Forums  /  Left 4 Dead series  /  Left 4 Dead 2  /  AI Kicking rules

Currently there isn't any rule set for whether you can kick the AI in solo and coop runs,

Just to bring awareness on kicking bots you can do this in solo runs (official servers included) and local hosted / user owned (rcon commands) servers for coop.

L4D 1 runs currently don't kick bots and kill them at the start of each map (difficulty votes used). I personally would like to keep this for consistency over the series.

However I would like other runners to post on their thought and what they would like rules wise for the AI. This is to ensure I don't just set rules to suit me.


I think kicking bots should be banned. I don't know how to explain it but I feel that it's too cheap... Instead of working with the problem of the bots you are literally just getting rid of the problem.

So I agree that only difficulty votes should be use able in terms of getting rid of the bots


I'm fine with either outcome of this "poll", but I'd like to say what I think anyway.

In my opinion, not allowing the players to kick the bots would go against the "spirit" of any% running and anything related to it - said spirit being completion of a game or its part at the fastest possible pace, while not using any internal cheats or external hacks.

Kicking the bots shouldn't be considered a cheat, since kicking is a built-in element of the game. You do need a command to do it, but it is not protected by the sv_cheats command - so by definition it is not a cheat. Same as anything you would do with the developer console or without it - calling a vote can be done in the Esc menu as well as by typing "callvote mapchange" in console, just like even the most basic actions like pressing Space equals typing "+jump" into the console.

Leaving the bots in play, in its most basic form equals going through the game with three cannonballs chained to your leg. If anything, they slow down the player. When they're not staying several metres behind, they take forever to actually take action in helping a downed player.
And about the "cheapness" of it - getting rid of them could actually screw the player over at times (since you obviously cannot progress if all players in play are downed or dead, and if you get downed with all bots kicked, you're going to be forced back to chapter beginning).

TL;DR: It's not a cheat by the game's definition; kicking them instead of killing would potentially speed up the progression.

dareka00dareka00 likes this. 

I also understand both sides and would be totally okay with either of the outcomes.

But in my opinion kicking the bots shouldn't be a part of speedruns. The fact that it is possible to abuse it by simply finishing a map and then kicking the bots just doesn't feel right in my opinion. And i think you can't compare kicking them to things like jumping and map changes because while jumping and voting are basic features you can use by pressing the key for them you actually need to use the console command to kick them i believe.


I'm a bit on both sides of it. It's an very interesting topic that could use more discussion.

We can just add a separate category for the time being. Atleast I think that's the smartest thing to do until we have a bigger community and more inputs on this.

I can't really think of a better way to solve this lmao


Originally posted by DevilsToastAnd i think you can't compare kicking them to things like jumping and map changes because while jumping and voting are basic features you can use by pressing the key for them you actually need to use the console command to kick them i believe.

I kinda have to disagree on this part. You can just do "bind <key> [kick Rochelle; kick Ellis; kick Coach]" and make it work just like any other keybind. Similarly, you can also unbind specific keys, if you won't need to (for example) turn right for some insane reason :V


Now that I've seen other peoples thoughts on this I want to give more details on my views on Kicking AI.

I think it shouldn't be included into speed runs mainly due to it being a console command that isn't easily accessible to a user without the use of scripts or the developers console.

The voting script that is available within the resources would be borderline of this, however the reason I'm OK with it is that you can still vote to change difficulty/level via the menu provided by the game.

However this isn't available for kicking bots as it is a server command rather than a user command (movement, shooting, weapon switching, voting, etc. is what I believe are user commands).

Another view point is that you could just use 'sv_cheats' to enable 'noclip' via the developers console. Therefore we need to draw a line somewhere and I believe going with the expression 'Can the user access this setting without use of developers console' would be the best way to achieve this.

But this is my thought. I'm glad people are discussing this 😃.


Originally posted by DevilsToastconsole command to kick them

That's all that needs to be said to get a no from me.


As an update I'm gonna implement a 'no kicking bots' rule onto all runs for L4D2.

This is mainly due to more people saying it should be banned versus it being allowed.

Feel free to keep discussing as I am still willing to change this if a good enough argument arises.

Please note a couple of runs under the solo Main campaigns runs include kicking bots, these runs were submitted before this change so I am leaving them up.
None are WR's and could still be improved without the need to kick bots via console.

Adam_akAdam_ak likes this. 

As an experienced speedrunner, I can say that disallowing the use of the console to kick bots is a stupid idea. The goal of any% is to complete the objective as fast as possible using what the game gives you. This means that any cheat code or hack would not be allowed unless the community fully agrees with it.

However, the use of the 'kick' command can be fully utilized without enabling cheats. If the game doesn't consider this a cheat, I don't either. What about people saying that large skips or glitches shouldn't be allowed because it's "cheating"? Using the kick command is just making use of what the game has given you (which by default, it does not allow cheats, but does allow kicking).

My full opinion as well as many others.


So the plan is right now that there will be variables for Kicking and Not Kicking bots. Submit your run as Kicked if you kicked them at any point in the run. If you didn't kick them at any point in the run leave it as with bots. This is my Solution for people who are divided on whether or not you should kick or leave bots. I know there are a couple different opinions and like I mentioned earlier I'm on both sides of the opinion.

Anyone who has a better idea please go ahead and comment.


This comment has been redacted by the moderator team because it contained offensive slurs.


Pretty sure the AI director's behaviour is affected by kicking bots instead of killing them at the start of a map. There's also the fact that kicking bots is a gameplay-altering command that's simply not available in the game other than via console access (much like director_report; director_stop; z_spawn tank; give health; etc). If kicking bots is allowed, what would be the logic behind not allowing other console-only commands, such as the aforementioned?

Imo, console commands should be limited to starting demo recordings and rebinding keys.


The thing is, killing bots at the start of the map is essentially not worth it in a solo run, since it requires a vote to switch to Expert, and after each vote you're on a cooldown of 2 minutes before you can cast another vote - in this case, a vote to change the difficulty back to Easy. Basically means you get fucked over unless you manage to run through the map on Expert for two minutes - which is just not worth it, considering the risk.

Console access isn't really something restricted from use with a thousand locks and barriers, it's a simple on/off switch in the keyboard options menu.

Right now we're all thinking of bots as of game entities, while at the core they're basically a stand-in for real players - which you can kick with options provided to you. Yes, kicking the bots probably does influence the Director's choices, but so does playing with less human players than a fully stacked team of four.
That's what I set as my argument against the other commands. Directly influencing the Director or outright disabling him, changing the Infected' stats, healing yourself instantly - these commands are literally a direct interference into the game's ruleset/code/whatever is the proper term. Absence of bots isn't as much of an interference (if you really want to classify it as one) - to me, it basically equals playing with less players in your team.

I propose the following - restrict console commands to only allow demo recording, rebinding keys (as mentioned above) and kicking bots. Blatantly cheating your way through the game with noclipping or disabling enemy AI is not speedrunning.


You can change difficulties with no cooldown on earlier versions of the game, which is what Deln and I have been doing in our runs, however killing teammates on most of the maps is way too risky for a single-segment run.

a_moustachea_moustache, DelnDeln and 3 others like this. 

Just because a console command is possible without cheats on doesn't mean it's not a cheat... it's really up to the community to judge each command that are in the gray zone (that's what SDA does as well). Also the kick command can be used to remove special infected from the game including tanks, not just bots or players.


Disabling enemy/Survivors AI is not speedrunning.

  [user deleted]

Is killing bots allowed?
In the beginning?


yes it is but only by shooting, not through commands


Its necesary to kill the bots in the solo category?