Bots are really bad at shooting down skulls, they seem to be hobbled by the same limiter that stops them from shooting specials. In theory bots have perfect godlike accuracy that lets them aimbot special from across the map, but to keep that from becoming “OP” (even though many players are capable of the same thing) bots have a cooldown before they can shoot specials to force the player to take up more of the slack. That’s why bots often stand around like drooling morons while a disabler is busy killing you right in front of them.
Skulls just make that problem even worse because they can’t be melee’d effectively and come in large packs. If there are no other enemies around the bots can shoot them all down, maybe. But in any other situation they fall flat because they completely ignore them and are then killed by whatever they are trying to fight at the time. Another bot problem that makes skull levels unplayable is their pathfinding. There are many locations where not just one but all three bots can get stuck. And this is a “hard” stuck where they can’t tell that they are stuck and will only teleport to the player if they move very far away. What often happens is I take my eye off the bots for just FIVE seconds when skulls spawn and all attack me at the same time because the bots are stuck on a waist high ledge and won’t drop down.
In order to fix these problems you just have to implement the same solutions we’ve been wanting for years now. Bots need to be more willing to use their ranged weapons in general, especially when they have >50% ammo reserved and nothing better to do. Having a cooldown is generally okay, but the cooldown should be made shorter to account for special number/power creep and bots MUST shoot specials that approach within with a certain distance or that are already attacking a party member. There is no excuse for sitting idle while people are dying, only the very worse of human players would do something so stupid. As well ranged enemies should be targeted with the highest priority because bots tend to ignore incoming skulls/disabling flies until it’s too late and they still, STILL completely and utterly refuse to shoot ungor archers even years after the WoM launch.
Solving the ranged weapon issues can likely be handled just by tweaking internal variables. Bots have artificial limits on their shooting ability because without them they would be godlike. You just have to loosen those limits a bit to let the boots keep up with gameplay that has sped up and expanded over the years. If you’re not willing to put in the effort yourself then at least allow one of the few remaining modders to handle this in your stead.
I know investing effort into improving bots isn’t a big money making item. But it’s something you should handle sooner rather than later because eventually VT2 will be like VT1 and bots will be the only viable way to play the game on a daily basis. We have already reached the point where quickplay matches don’t always fill up at the start and bots must be used for part of the mission where they can easily do dumb stuff and drag you down. Plus we have Darktide cresting the horizon and that will drain the playerbase even more.