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Corrupt Cops


Rhoda
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For quite a while now I've been interested in the police in this game and how they seem to have this bias towards whether or not they want to give you a wanted star. I'm not much of a coder so I don't know the in-and-out behind the values but it seems sometimes you can get away with killing somebody in front of a policeman's eyes and then other times you'll get a star from stealing a car in the middle of nowhere. I'd like to think it's a case of turning a blind eye. I've only really been paying attention to it recently because I'm on a grind to reach maximum respect before carrying on with the story and I've noticed I can take the face off a drug dealer with a shotgun without so much as a sniff, but if I steal a fresh NRG-500 from the car park out of sight I'll be slapped with attention, and it'll take ages for the star to vanish.

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universetwisters
8 minutes ago, Rhoda said:

... I can take the face off a drug dealer with a shotgun without so much as a sniff...

 

"something something gangbangers killing eachother makes my job easier" - Tenpenny probably

 

As far as that NRG example goes, I think it's somewhere in the code to where if a car is stolen from X location it'll guarantee a wanted level. I know it's there in IV, it'd be a surprise if it wasn't in SA.

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25 minutes ago, universetwisters said:

I think it's somewhere in the code to where if a car is stolen from X location it'll guarantee a wanted level.

Very highly unlikely it exists in SA. But there is a "player owns this vehicle" flag for some parked vehicles (such as Sweet's Greenwood) stealing which never results in a wanted level.

 

I think the cops' FOV doesn't heed the Z (up-down) coordinate scale, like a handful of area-checking stuff in the game's code, and thus they have a 2D FOV that only checks side-to-side and back and forth. I believe there was a cop in the street below the car park when the OP took that NRG, hence he got a wanted level.

Edited by H-G
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Cutter De Blanc

I was under the impression that each "crime" you commit raises a hidden number value, that different crimes have different values, and once you reach a certain value you get a wanted star and the number will go back down over time or if you collect one of them floating stars. I remember reading that a long time ago, dunno if its true

Edited by Cutter De Blanc
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CynicalMexican

Yeah, I mean, it's a Renderware era game. The AI is naturally not as complex because the engine isn't that great.

 

Plus, the AI in GTA SA can be notoriously glitchy lol. All kinds of strange ass sh*t happens. 

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I know for certain that you can kill a lot of enemy gang members and it'll take longer to get a wanted level. I believe the same applies to drug dealers. Even then, it take a lot longer to get 2 stars, than you would be killing normal peds.

 

In the past, i've been told about a hidden "chaos meter" of sorts for raising wanted level but i have no knowledge of how the programming for it works altogther anyway. I do know that vehicles that you haven't entered before are a clear red flag for a wanted level if a cop is around. There is exception for some vehicles though, as was mentioned above.

Edited by Robin3sk
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A couple other wanted-level mysteries:

  • If CJ jacks the Maverick at the SF airport while he has a high wanted level (4-star exploration) the Hydra won't pursue for a short time (about a minute, iirc). My impression was there is something special about that location. There doesn't appear to be anything special about the Mavericks. 
  • @Krawk argued that there were "Hidden Bribes" in San Andreas. Not pickup bribes in the traditional sense, but areas of the map that would cause a wanted level decrease more quickly than expected. I have no observations to support or refute his hypothesis.
  • Casual observations suggest that some areas of the map are always within police view, mainly cities. But I never tried to confirm that there are not actually some cops somewhere nearby. 

There aren't all that many car generators in SA with the Player Owned property:

  • 8-Track rewards - MonsterA and Hotring
  • Dirt Track reward - BF Injection
  • Whetstone safehouse - Sanchez, Walton, Tractor
  • Sweet and Ryder cars - Greenwood, Picador
  • East LS Alley - BMX
  • Wang's Autos - Uranus, Elegy, Sultan, Savanna, Stratum
  • Unlocked Girlfriend Cars (50%) - Hustler, MonsterB, Police Ranger, Bandito, Romero, Club
  • Boat and Bike School rewards - Marquis, Squalo, Jetmax, Freeway, FCR-900, NRG-500

The hidden "chaos meter" in San Andreas wasn't so hidden in Vice City, where it was referred to as Media Attention Level. It's a value that increases as chaos is created, and constantly counts down when the player is not in view of the police (in a police vehicle? in an aircraft? in a city?). The higher the level the quicker it counts down, so eventually it becomes impossible to cause enough chaos to raise it any higher. As the chaos/media level crosses various thresholds, wanted stars are added or removed.

 

There was at least one mission that highlighted media attention, a Highest Media Attention Level stat to run up, and a cheat to enable display of the current attention level. My favorite strategies for a high attention level was driving a Rhino by constantly firing backward, and once infinite ammo and fast reload was unlocked, constantly firing rockets until the meter couldn't go any higher and then blasting a pile of vehicles to top it off.

 

At one point I revisited GTA III and ran some tests on the chaos level using a cleo script. I'm not having any luck finding notes on my investigation and don't even remember why I ran the tests, I usually stick with SA. However, the investigation greatly informed my understanding of the GTA3 era wanted system. It was easy to test how various activities increased the chaos level, and by remaining in view of a cop I could hold the wanted level constant and measure the chaos value of each activity.


If someone was really motivated to investigate SA's chaos and wanted level system in more detail, draft a report, maybe make a video, I could try to workup a cleo script to help measure and display the relevant hidden information. It shouldn't be too hard to adapt my coords hud script to do the job, but I'm too burned out on this game to play test anything beyond making sure the script does it's job properly.

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On 6/3/2021 at 7:13 PM, Rhoda said:

you can get away with killing somebody in front of a policeman's eyes

 

If your respect is high yeah but there is a "Distance Factor" here which trigger an attention or not.. For example i can easily takeout ballas after provoking a gang war when the cop is opposite side of road..  

 

On 6/3/2021 at 7:13 PM, Rhoda said:

other times you'll get a star from stealing a car in the middle of nowhere

 

Apart from SA i was playing SWAT4 and SWAT, Suspects could see each other from a "Pinhole" (And swat guys were somehow keep aiming their weapons to suspects even the suspects were out of sight ) 😀 i think cops were seeing your actions from a distance or pinhole 😀

 

On 6/3/2021 at 7:13 PM, Rhoda said:

I can take the face off a drug dealer with a shotgun without so much as a sniff

 

It is not only a drug dealer but also gangstas as well..

 

On 6/3/2021 at 7:13 PM, Rhoda said:

it'll take ages for the star to vanish

 

It is all about RESPECT my friend 😀

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I would love to see a deeper exploration as to how the wanted level is determined in this game because I've never really given much of a thought. As said, sometimes a star can stick and I am aware that a star will either take longer to fade or refuse to disappear completely if you're in a police vehicle. Sometimes leaving the area as quickly as possible will cause the star to vanish in seconds, as I've found when I've popped a couple of dealers and immediately hopped on my bike to find another area. I'm interested in what people are saying about the axis of vision and how the actual sight of the police officers is handled but I will admit in the decade and a half of playing this game I probably understand the wanted level system the least because it feels so arbitrary at times, and I'm certain that isn't the case.

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2 hours ago, Rhoda said:

As said, sometimes a star can stick and I am aware that a star will either take longer to fade or refuse to disappear completely if you're in a police vehicle.

It's to do with the accumulation of points, as @Cutter De Blanc said.

 

There was a good explanation about how it works on these forums, but essentially there are conditions that increase and decrease your current wanted rating, and as soon as you hit a certain value the stars go up or down.

 

I'm not aware of any other wanted level formulae, the explanations given at a time seemed to have satisfied me the way it was presented.

Edited by Lioshenka
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The documentation of Wanted Level on GTAMods Wiki has a great breakdown of the chaos points. It seems incomplete though. I think something else happens at very high chaos levels that lets it count down faster, and in view of the cops. Otherwise it'd just keep increasing forever, and I definitely hit a max level in Vice City where it was counting down as fast as I could cause more chaos.

 

Another chaos factor, there's a wanted level multiplier that will often reduce the sensitivity of crime during some missions. For example, after each vigilante level the multiplier is reduced by a small amount. At very high vigilante levels it becomes impossible to gain a wanted level by causing chaos. Interesting, the multiplier is set to -1.0 when CJ is suppose to kill the valet in 555 We Tip. Normally the value is between 0.0 and 1.0. 

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11 hours ago, OrionSR said:

The documentation of Wanted Level on GTAMods Wiki has a great breakdown of the chaos points. It seems incomplete though. I think something else happens at very high chaos levels that lets it count down faster, and in view of the cops. Otherwise it'd just keep increasing forever, and I definitely hit a max level in Vice City where it was counting down as fast as I could cause more chaos.

 

Another chaos factor, there's a wanted level multiplier that will often reduce the sensitivity of crime during some missions. For example, after each vigilante level the multiplier is reduced by a small amount. At very high vigilante levels it becomes impossible to gain a wanted level by causing chaos. Interesting, the multiplier is set to -1.0 when CJ is suppose to kill the valet in 555 We Tip. Normally the value is between 0.0 and 1.0. 

 

If you happen to destroy 12 hydras at the same time, you get an instant 6 star wanted level. Since you get 400 points for each aircraft destroyed. :D

 

 

 

Maybe just being in the countryside and losing chaos points comes from less police and being further away from them. 

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SA Chaos Toolkit (mirror)


I put together a set of cleo scripts to help players observe many of the hidden variables behind the wanted level system in San Andreas. SA is a lot different that what's been reported for III and Vice City, but I haven't made enough observations to draw too many solid conclusions. I'll discuss what I learn in future posts, for now I'll concentrate on the toolkit.
 

One important difference though, SA doesn't do point doubling when cops are near. Instead it does point reduction (* .333) for crimes against gangs, dealers and criminals. These reductions are reflected in the points displayed by the tools. Count on SA awarding an automatic wanted level when crimes are committed when cops are near, plus the points for the crime.

 

Readme.txt:

Chaos Toolkit for GTA San Andreas

 

Four cleo scripts to display some of the hidden variables behind 
the wanted level system in San Andreas.


ChaosHud - a topline bar that displays:

  • Cops in pursuit/max pursuit
  • Max cop cars in pursuit
  • Chance of a roadblock
  • Current weather region
  • (in 0:Country or 4:Desert the chaos counts down quicker, and at high levels)
  • Crime point multiplier - reduced by some missions
  • (decimal portions of the result are rounded down)
  • Total chaos points/max chaos points
  • Chaos range for current wanted level
  • Wanted level/max wanted level (stars)


ChaosSplash - displays crimes committed and points earned
This script has two modes of operation, each triggered by the following cheat string:

  •  "VERBOSE" - displays crime type, crime example, +points earned/base points for crime
  •  "BRIEF" (default) - displays crime type + points earned. Hides crimes worth 0 points

ChaosSplash should correctly adjust the base points with the following multipliers

  • General chaos/wanted level multiplier (sensitivity to crime) * varies by mission
  • Crimes against gangs, dealers and criminals, * 0.333
  • Crimes during a rampage (untested) * 0.3
  • Chaos points == max chaos points * 0.0


ChaosRange - displays the number of police within 4 specific distances above the game hud

  • < 14m, police within this radius will notice all crimes committed
  • < 18m, police within this radius will prevent chaos from counting down
  • (18m also appears to be range where the cops stop and start shooting)
  • < 30m, police will notice explosions from ground vehicles - 'Criminal'
  • < 60m, police notice explosive weapons and the destruction of aircraft - 'Federal'


ChaosPing - typing "PING" will trigger this testing tool that will:

  • briefly display a sphere a each radius distance
  • offers notes on the significance of each range
  • counts the police at each range

The main purpose is to offer a visual display of each radius
Note: the largest sphere doesn't always display well. It helps to look down a little.

 

 

All Crimes, Charges, and triggering event (needs work)

  • Crime01: Unlawful Discharge - use a weapon
  • Crime02: Assault - attack any ped
  • Crime03: Resisting Arrest - fight with police
  • Crime04: Bodily Harm - weapon damage any ped
  • Crime05: Assault of an Officer - weapon damage on cop
  • Crime06: Grand Theft Auto - steal a car
  • Crime07: Crime 7 - unused redlight
  • Crime08: Reckless Endangerment - cop evasive dive
  • Crime09: Reckless Driving - police evasive dive
  • Crime10: Vehicular Homicide - runover a civilian
  • Crime11: Capitol Homicide - runover police
  • Crime12: Federal Helicide - destroy a helicopter
  • Crime13: Arson - burn a pedestrian
  • Crime14: Capitol Arson - burn police
  • Crime15: Vehicle Arson - burn a vehicle
  • Crime16: Federal Aerocide - destroy a plane
  • Crime17: Federal Explosives - use explosive weapon
  • Crime18: Assassination - stealth kill a civilian
  • Crime19: Crime 19 -  unused crime
  • Crime20: Criminal Autocide - destroy a ground vehicle
  • Crime21: Malicious Mischief - fight a vehicle
  • Crime22: Threaten an Officer - aim weapon at police
Edited by OrionSR
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8 hours ago, OrionSR said:

I put together a set of cleo scripts to help players observe many of the hidden variables behind the wanted level system in San Andreas.

 

I wish you could create a "New Realtime Status Monitor" with asi extention like real time fat/muscle increase/decrease and skills also 😃 

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LeatherJacketSoldier
On 6/4/2021 at 6:43 PM, OrionSR said:

@Krawk argued that there were "Hidden Bribes" in San Andreas. Not pickup bribes in the traditional sense, but areas of the map that would cause a wanted level decrease more quickly than expected. I have no observations to support or refute his hypothesis.

Yeah, they are in the boundaries of isolated areas like the route south of Verdant Meadows. Enter those areas, and one star will vanish. I always do this in Vigilante (not Brown Thunder) missions, when I have 2 or 3 stars. But this works even for 6 stars, I assure you.

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1 hour ago, LeatherJacketSoldier said:

Yeah, they [hidden bribes] are in the boundaries of isolated areas like the route south of Verdant Meadows.

Can you provide specific coordinates? Does the Chaos Toolkit provide any information on why the stars are decreasing?

 

1 hour ago, LeatherJacketSoldier said:

I always do this in Vigilante

That's unexpected. Initial observations suggest the chaos points don't decrease while driving a police vehicle or aircraft.

 

2 hours ago, ArmanCan said:

I wish you could create a...

Let's try to avoid too much emphasis on the new modding tools, the moderators a liable to crank at me for posting them in this forums. These tools are supposed to enhance observations of the SA wanted level system, the central theme of this topic.

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LeatherJacketSoldier
3 minutes ago, OrionSR said:

Can you provide specific coordinates? Does the Chaos Toolkit provide any information on why the stars are decreasing?

No, I'm speaking of personal experience, I didn't use your tool.

 

4 minutes ago, OrionSR said:

That's unexpected. Initial observations suggest the chaos points don't decrease while driving a police vehicle or aircraft.

It's possible to lose stars over time while in an aircraft. However, it ain't when driving a law enforcement vehicle, even while at one star (this including the Hunter and the Hydra). I was amazed the first time I lost a star that way when doing the Vigilante mission, until then I thought those specific stars were lost over time like the rest. Then I realized the limits of such deserted areas force one star to dissapear, no matter if police is seeing you (or even chasing you) or if you're driving a law enforcement vehicle. I don't have enough time to go check it out with the tool (I've got 3 exams between this week and the next one), but if someone who reads this topic has time, I suggest him/her trying with areas such as the isolated desert routes (I remember one star disappeared when climbing a mountain there, but I was on a Mesa), and the dirt roads in Back O' Beyond.

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3 hours ago, LeatherJacketSoldier said:

but if someone who reads this topic has time, I suggest him/her trying with areas such as the isolated desert routes (I remember one star disappeared when climbing a mountain there, but I was on a Mesa), and the dirt roads in Back O' Beyond.

 

I cannot say officially and it depends on the RESPECT but yeah "Hidden Bribes" exists.. For example when i was escaping from cops (Four Stars and there was a barrier between LV and LS) i  did a clean/pacifist run, managed to jump over the freeway ledge (MONTGOMERY INTERSECTION) with bike, and i  suddenly lost my one star under the intersection.. I took the police bribe under this intersection and there were only two stars left. Than i rode my bike between Palomino Creek path (espace route where you rode police bike at "Small Town Bank" mission) and freeway and i lost one star again.. After that it was piece of cake to go anywhere 🙂

 

4 hours ago, OrionSR said:

Let's try to avoid too much emphasis on the new modding tools, the moderators a liable to crank at me for posting them in this forums. These tools are supposed to enhance observations of the SA wanted level system, the central theme of this topic.

Sorry about my blunt and dumb saying.. 🙂

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Wanted Level Notes: The wanted level documentation on GTAMods is more complete than I expected, but significant observations are hidden on the Talk page and not fully incorporated into the wiki. Key details are hidden in a paste bin file linked on the Talk page. Also, the documentation is very VC/III centric; it's hard to tell which comments apply to which game. Not all comments seem to apply to SA. 

 

This wanted level table adds are few fields in addition to the minimum chaos level required to trigger each wanted level (stars). Not shown is the chaos level set when the wanted level is adjusted (set directly by the game, or reduced by collecting a bribe) - the new chaos level will be the minimum Chaos Level +20. So, 1 star = 70, 2 stars = 200; these values might appear in summaries of chaos combos.

Stars               1     2     3     4     5     6
Chaos Level        50   180   550  1200  2400  4600
Max Chaos         115   365   875  1800  3500  6900
Max Pursuit Cops    1     3     4     6     8    10
Max Pursuit Cars    1     2     2     2     3     3
Roadblock Chance    0     0    12    18    24    30

 

Crime Cool-Down (10 seconds): This was mentioned on the Talk(Discussion) page but not well defined. The ChaosSplash script makes observations a lot easier. The 10 second cool-down seems to apply to a specific crime against a specific target. There are only 16 crime slots; it looks like additional crimes can't be reported if all slots are currently in cool-down.

 

Parole (fyi): The "parole" data in the wanted level structure is associated with the blinking stars after using a pay'n'spray. I figured there was no point in displaying this information as time for parole and previous wanted level is communicated by the blinking stars anyway. The only info missing is the previous chaos level that's restored if police are alerted.

 

Automatic Wanted Levels: There are lots of ways that CJ can earn a wanted level that is independent of the chaos system. any of which could be described as automatic stars. I want to discuss a specific type of automatic wanted level (crimes near cops), so I feel the need to define them all a little better. For many of these tests the chaos multiplier is set to 0.0, so no points can be earned from crimes.

  • Military Zones (5 stars): As defined by cull zones
  • Restricted Islands (4 stars): Hard coded coordinates
  • Scripted: Missions, armed in police station, entering impound without police vehicle, cleo scripts.
  • Proximity: Crimes and other events near police.

 

Proximity stars might also need sub categories. There seems to be special rules for colliding with a police car in a way that will trigger a wanted level. I'm not sure that those rules apply to bumping a police car while on parole. Alarmed cars might also need special clarification. The problem is, there are events that can trigger an automatic wanted level increase that don't report as crimes.

 

Usually when a crime is committed near police the automatic chaos points are added first, and then the crime points are added to the total. I suspect the rule is to increase the wanted level if the crime alone isn't enough to do it anyway, but in the end the first crime is usually Unlawful Discharge +0, so the auto-star kicks in then.

 

Most of the crimes I've tested can auto-raise the wanted level to 1, but not higher. Then I found an exception, satchel charges. Tossing a satchel results in a 25 point federal explosives charge, but detonating doesn't trigger it's own crime. However, if police are near and CJ already has a 1 star wanted level then the detonation can raise the wanted level to 2 stars, but not higher.

 

Added:

 

On 6/3/2021 at 10:47 AM, H-G said:

I think the cops' FOV doesn't heed the Z (up-down) coordinate scale, like a handful of area-checking stuff in the game's code, and thus they have a 2D FOV that only checks side-to-side and back and forth. I believe there was a cop in the street below the car park when the OP took that NRG, hence he got a wanted level.

I was able to test this hypothesis by hovering over a cop with a jetpack. The function I'm using to detect police range should be the same as what is used to check cop range for crimes. The distance reported includes Z distance. Firing a weapon only resulted in a wanted level when the distance was within 14m. So, the idea is certainly valid as I've seen lots of Z issues Rockstar's 3D era games, but didn't hold up when tested.

 

Huh! Car bombs don't seem to register any kind of crime beyond the secondary damage they cause. My test save has all three bomb type garages; all seem to produce the same null result.

 

Some comments in the wiki do not apply to SA; I can't independently test what actually works in VC and III at this time.

In San Andreas:

  • chaos counts down by 2 (even at high levels) when the current weather region is Desert (4, Bone County) or Country (0). The wiki doesn't mention country.
  • crime 1, unlawful discharge of a weapon, does not trigger when throwing a projectile or revving a chainsaw. This crime seems to be limited to using ammo.
  • crimes 2 and 4, assault and deadly weapon, apply to all peds, civilians and cops, but not vehicles. SA has a new charge for attacking vehicles. Attacks with deadly weapons will also score the general assault.
  • crimes 10 and 11, vehicular homicide and capitol homicide, do not require killing the pedestrian; sometimes they survive. I think I scored this one while driving over a vehicle.
  • Misc, any heli, any plane, any explosive except car bombs. 

 

Multiple Charges from a Single Crime: It could be that multiple charges are part of wanted level balancing for SA and doesn't apply to VC and III. VC and III did point doubling, SA does not. Again, this is something I can't test at this time. An example based on shooting an unaware cop (who doesn't notice CJ aiming at him).

 

Example: Shoot a cop from greater than 14 meters

  • Discharge +0
  • Assault +5
  • Deadly Weapon +30
  • Assault of an Officer +80
  • = 115, 1 star

 

Attacking a cop from within 14 meters

  • Discharge +0
  • 1 star = 70
  • Assault +5
  • Deadly Weapon +30
  • Assault of an Officer +80
  • Threatening an Officer +2
  • = 187, 2 stars

 

Threatening (targeting) is a bit odd. Cops don't seem to notice they're being aim at until they walk within 14 meters, and don't notice if they're being targeted from behind until after they've been shot. The wanted level is applied first, and then +2 for the threat; not sure what to think about that just yet.

 

Edited by OrionSR
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I've noticed that,if it doesn't happen in front of a cop,CJ can kill two NPCs in short time without getting a wanted level,but killing a third one gives him 1 star even if there's no cops around,so I'm guessing it's programmed somehow.Haven't tried to see how many vehicles he can steal (or commit other crimes) before getting a wanted level.

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I've  been actually thinking of this quite a lot i've been playing, for example you barely touched a police car and then get 1 star, it seems that they just don't know that accidents exists, lmao

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On 6/30/2021 at 10:35 PM, saturnz said:

I've  been actually thinking of this quite a lot i've been playing, for example you barely touched a police car and then get 1 star, it seems that they just don't know that accidents exists, lmao

Cop slowly inches forward, hits you with the force of a feather falling on the ground, 1 star wanted level :D

 

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 6/14/2021 at 7:11 PM, OrionSR said:

Let's try to avoid too much emphasis on the new modding tools, the moderators a liable to crank at me for posting them in this forums. These tools are supposed to enhance observations of the SA wanted level system, the central theme of this topic.

It is impossible to argue that these scripts are game modifications, but they do not create changes in the gameplay, but only show the current status of some variables so that the player can get a quick report on the surrounding situation instead of drawing erroneous conclusions about it in the event of a game bug or accidental coincidence of circumstances. From this, I constantly use the player's current coordinates checker to know where I am relative to the center of the map.

Thank you so much for the work done

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