(2-06a) Counterproposal: Rome Rework

KlHannibal2

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A simpler alternative I see is something along these lines:
  • UA no longer retains UB/UNW in conquered cities.
  • UA's 4 tiles on conquest is replaced by a +1 citadel tile acquisition radius (just like Lebensraum).
  • Coliseum no longer gives :c5greatperson: Great Admiral nor :c5goldenage: Golden Age Points, but gives more :c5greatperson: Great General points and also grants it on city conquest.
This reduces the similarity with Shoshone's UA and sets a synergy between Rome uniques. This gives Rome something distinct from the playstyle of other militaristic civs: carving considerable parts of enemy territory, paving the way to their cities, and putting the Legion's ability to build roads and forts to good (offensive) use.

I can put this as a counterproposal if others see enough merit in it.
+1 citadel tile acquisition radius is way too strong IMO. Even more so with increased general points. There is a Zulu series on youtube by Milae where he uses Lebensraum citadels on Russia. He had 10 or so generals. Then he moved in his army peacefully. In a SINGLE TURN, he took out all russian cities. This is an extreme case, but even with 2 or 3 generals, Rome could take out an AI in the mid game with little resistance.
 
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Legen

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+1 citadel tile acquisition radius is way too strong IMO. Even more so with increased general points.
You got the idea of the playstyle. Of course, +1 tile acquisition radius is extreme for illustrative purposes. The concept is that Rome would have a special benefit from placing citadels. The final benefit would likely be something like one of the following:
  • Citadels claim one or two additional random tiles.
  • Citadels grant a (much smaller) combat bonus to nearby allied units, just like the Moai.
  • Citadels can be placed on a tile adjacent to your borders that is owned by another civilization, just as you can in vanilla.
  • Citadels increase the healing of nearby units.
The exact benefit is up to discussion.
 
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AndreyK

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You got the idea of the playstyle. Of course, +1 tile acquisition radius is extreme for illustrative purposes. The concept is that Rome would have a special benefit from placing citadels. The final benefit would likely be something like one of the following:
  • Citadels claim one or two additional random tiles.
  • Citadels grant a (much smaller) combat bonus to nearby allied units, just like the Moai.
  • Citadels can be placed on a tile adjacent to your borders, just as it is in vanilla, instead of only inside.
  • Citadels increase the healing of nearby units.
The exact benefit is up to discussion.
Citadels can be placed on a tile adjacent to your borders right now in VP.
 

Legen

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Citadels can be placed on a tile adjacent to your borders right now in VP.
If unonwed, yes.

You can't place a citadel on tiles owned by other civilizations in VP, but you can in vanilla. I'll edit to clarify this in particular.
 

Hinin

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pineappledan

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Rome does not have big bonuses to kill units like other warmongers, I find retention of defensive buildings useful and thematic.
Yes it does. That's what its UB's main bonus is, and with a mechanic that is a carbon copy of Greece's.
Incidentally, Greece's yields on kill is focused on gaining tiles, with global BGPs on kills. So there's more overlap with Rome, who gets free tiles on conquest.
The colosseum adds to the mentioned siege theme by giving more generals.
Greece also has a bonus to GGeneral generation. Hoplites generate 2x the GGPs from combat.
The more I look at these two civs the more they bleed together in my mind. Greece and Rome both have bonuses towards GGenerals and tile expansion from wars. Their melee UUs and yields-on-kills UBs have similar timings and bonuses.
The main difference between the two is Greece has a permanent combat bonus in his UA, and has a full backup strategy with his diplo focus; all Rome has is a %:c5production: modifier.
I don't find the mechanic that interesting outside of the context of Rome and prefer to keep the current building production bonus for older buildings.
Probably because it's not a very interesting mechanic, but I digress.
Civilizing Mission (Imperialism policy)
Conquered cities retain all buildings. Puppeted cities and cities with a Courthouse gain +10% :c5production:Production towards buildings, with an additional +10%:c5production: Production per Era difference between your current Era and the building's Era.
I never proposed removing the building production modifier, just the instant :c5gold: on conquest. We have lots of yields on conquest bonuses, even a belief that also gives :c5gold: on conquest.
As for the villa, I like the food bonus for the capital but I don't like the farm spam you need to max it. What is the use if farms if you play wide / warmonger? Any I think the villa would be much weaker than the colosseum.
Looking at it more, I think the villa is weak too. I'm going to edit OP with a buff to it.

Bear in mind that the goal is to make Rome more unique and fun to play, and not necessarily to make him stronger. Also, the proposal would move more power onto the UA, which is currently trash.
My main issue however is the fact that the new UA and new UI serve to shoehorn Rome into fealty by removing any viability or potential synergy with statecraft and artistry.
This is an interesting perspective that I hadn't considered much before proposing.
One thing to consider is that the 2:c5food: in the capital from the UI, which requires 2nd ring and land around that to get adjacencies, means that the UI makes for a pretty interesting wide Tradition strategy. You potentially have a lot of free :c5food: coming into the capital that lets you work more specialists, and if you can force annex a military city-state, that shores up Tradition's weakness on units with a drip feed of :c5production:-free units. This is a good base for an Artistry play. If the Colosseum is replaced, you lose the :c5goldenage:GAPs from the kit, but you gain :c5production::c5gold::c5culture: on tiles, the 3 yields that golden age's augment. The UI's yields on tiles is great for Artistry, so I disagree that Rome has no Medieval options.
 
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gwennog

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I tend to agree with @KlHannibal2 's proposals even if my favorite version would be that of @Hinin 's Rome Rework.
I think what could be added to the legions is the construction of a Castrum, as proposed by Hinin but which I would transform as follows:
Can be built in neutral or hostile zone, claim adjacent tiles which are lost when it is destroyed.

In any case, as a modder, I confess, I agree to eliminate the part of the UA which keeps the special buildings (why not just keep them in the form of their buildingclass, maybe). VP is a mod anyway, making life easier for modders is part of the essence of a mod.
 

KlHannibal2

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Greece also has a bonus to GGeneral generation. Hoplites generate 2x the GGPs from combat.
The more I look at these two civs the more they bleed together in my mind, except Greece has a backup diplo focus, and Rome just has a %:c5production: modifier
True. Looking at both civs, I see way more synergy and overarching theme for extra generals / citadels with Rome than with Greece. With the extra land from citadels, Rome can build up forts and roads with legions, then stand fortified in the forts using pilum.
It resembles the roman focus on logistics and fortifying army camps on the move. And epic sieges like Alesia and Jerusalem.
If one of these civs should lose the "more generals" bonus, I would choose Greece.
I would love to see this offensive fortification theme retained, and strenghtend by keeping the legion's promotions.
 

pineappledan

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Made a counterproposal for just removing the UB stealing.

The congress votes are multi-vote so what's the harm. At minimum it will help gauge reception to just that 1 ability.
 

Zakuzelo

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You know, I should probably talk about why I don't like the proposed UA instead of just negging it.

The idea seems to be that you bully some city states into joining the empire, then use their units to either facilitate an early rush and get the warmonger ball rolling while supplementing your Legions. That latter part resonates with me, because the need for medics and/or cavalry to support your Legions (and 3&4UC Ballistias) is something I feel a lot. Conceptually it's not a bad idea.
But in practice I don't think it'd work. City states at this point in the game aren't going to have many, if any, archers and horsemen. They'll mostly just have spearmen, and that sucks. Spearmen don't compliment Legions at all and are really unsatisfying to use for any civ with a swordsman UU or civ going for early swordsman warfare. Plus it means your unit supply will be filled with those spears. What then? Delete them? That feels even worse.
I like the further Greece parallels and really like still getting the benefits of the annexed CS (friend or ally rewards, by the way?), but past that it seems like a tool to get free mediocre cities and free armies of mediocre units. That doesn't really say "Rome" to me, history be damned.
 
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KlHannibal2

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You know, I should probably talk about why I don't like the proposed UA instead of just negging it.

The idea seems to be that you bully some city states into joining the empire, then use their units to either facilitate an early rush and get the warmonger ball rolling while supplementing your Legions. That latter part resonates with me, because that need for medics or cavalry to support your Legions (and 3&4UC Ballistias) is one I feel a lot. Conceptually it's not a bad idea.
But in practice I don't think it'd work. City states at this point in the game aren't going to have many, if any, archers and horsemen. They'll mostly just have spearmen, and that sucks. Spearmen don't compliment Legions at all and are really unsatisfying to use for any civ with a swordsman UU or civ going for early swordsman warfare. Plus it means your unit supply will be filled with those spears. What then? Delete them? That feels even worse.
I like the further Greece parallels and really like still getting the benefits of the annexed CS (friend or ally rewards, by the way?), but past that it seems like a tool to get free mediocre cities and free armies of mediocre units. That doesn't really say "Rome" to me, history be damned.
I fully agree.
Thematically, this ability would fit the Huns IMO. And the Huns' cavalry could be supported by cheap meat-shields from city states along with captured units.
 

pineappledan

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If you don’t want their units you can conquer the CS normally and farm XP off them. That also would give the option of puppeting, and you would still get the per turn friends bonus from the conquered CS.
That doesn't really say "Rome" to me, history be damned.
Just saying the quiet part out loud now.

No one will agree on what Rome should do in-game, because people have hundreds of Roman history factoids in their heads that are often disconnected, mutually-conflicting, and filtered through pop culture. At the end of the day the history doesn't matter much, because Roman history is vast enough that you can make it play any tune you like. I've given my requisite dump of Roman history factoids for why this kit portrays something worthwhile about the Romans, but debating the historicity and "feel" beyond that will bear no fruit.
 
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ma_kuh

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Throwing this out there mostly as a thought experiment, what if Rome's UA was to gain a UA for entering Classical Era, based on the tech you use to get there (only happens as you enter Classical; additional techs don't unlock the other options)? In theory you could fit a lot of the conflicting ideas for what Rome "is" into this type of framework.

If you think Rome was a warmonger that swept up all its neighbors, Iron Working unlocks Annexation tribute.
If you think Rome was a great builder, Masonry unlocks building-capture and fast-building. (Still doesn't capture unique buildings, I see this as a technical fix that's pretty much mandatory.)
If you think Rome was a trading powerhouse, Sailing unlocks bonuses for caravans and cargo ships.
... You get the idea.

This approach captures the essence that Rome is remembered for any number of accomplishments, depending on what you focus on. It sort of parallels Byzantium as well, which I think is thematic. Byzantium makes a unique religion with combinations no one else can choose; Rome picks how it wants to present as unique based on the tech it chooses.

Anyway, I know it's probably a lot of work, so I'm not saying this is a "good" idea, but all the discussion on how best to represent the myriad facets of the Romans got me thinking, and this is where I went with it.
 
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Zakuzelo

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If you don’t want their units you can conquer the CS normally and farm XP off them. That also would give the option of puppeting, and you would still get the per turn friends bonus from the conquered CS.
If you don't want the benefits of the UA you can just not use the UA? That's a terrible argument. If you're not forcibly annexing a CS then it'd be debatably better to keep the current UA so as not to burn half it's buildings when you capture it.
Also, if it's just friendship bonuses, then wouldn't that disqualify the auxiliaries from CSs aspect you mentioned earlier? Correct me if I'm wrong, but friendly military CSs typically give you the most advanced unit they can based on your techs and resources, as Rome that's typically going to me vanilla swordsmen, not archers or cavalry.
Just saying the quiet part out loud now.

No one will agree on what Rome should do in-game, because people have hundreds of Roman history factoids in their heads that are often disconnected, mutually-conflicting, and filtered through pop culture. At the end of the day the history doesn't matter much, because Roman history is vast enough that you can make it play any tune you like. I've given my requisite dump of Roman history factoids for why this kit portrays something worthwhile about the Romans, but debating the historicity and "feel" beyond that will bear no fruit.
Historical accuracy is the least important aspect of my argument against this proposed UA. The entire rest of that post is about why it wouldn't work in terms of gameplay.
That said, I don't think I'm out of line to say that people click Rome to use Legions, not generic spearmen.
 

pineappledan

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If you don't want the benefits of the UA you can just not use the UA? That's a terrible argument. If you're not forcibly annexing a CS then it'd be debatably better to keep the current UA so as not to burn half it's buildings when you capture it.
Also, if it's just friendship bonuses, then wouldn't that disqualify the auxiliaries from CSs aspect you mentioned earlier? Correct me if I'm wrong, but friendly military CSs typically give you the most advanced unit they can based on your techs and resources, as Rome that's typically going to me vanilla swordsmen, not archers or cavalry.
re-read the proposed UA in the OP.
 

Laz0r

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This is an interesting perspective that I hadn't considered much before proposing.
One thing to consider is that the 2:c5food: in the capital from the UI, which requires 2nd ring and land around that to get adjacencies, means that the UI makes for a pretty interesting wide Tradition strategy. You potentially have a lot of free :c5food: coming into the capital that lets you work more specialists, and if you can force annex a military city-state, that shores up Tradition's weakness on units with a drip feed of :c5production:-free units. This is a good base for an Artistry play. If the Colosseum is replaced, you lose the :c5goldenage:GAPs from the kit, but you gain :c5production::c5gold::c5culture: on tiles, the 3 yields that golden age's augment. The UI's yields on tiles is great for Artistry, so I disagree that Rome has no Medieval options.
I was overzealous in my first post, you are right that the UI gives good justification for artistry (even without tradition as the first picked). I still don't think it's worth sacrificing the colosseum though as the villa (appears) to benefit Rome in a much less pragmatic fashion than the early production, golden age points, and increased unit cap/citadels/luxuries did, and it would be the loss of one of the most interesting UB's.

For what it's worth though the synergies you listed are unique and make for a fun reason for one to challenge themselves with warmonger tradition, something that is very sparsely explored outside of mod mod civilizations like Prussia, Israel, and the Timurids (and hopefully one day with some proper tradition buffs and authority nerfs, will become actually viable and not just a self imposed challenge on all but the smallest of maps.)

At the very least the colosseum should be preserved as a mod-mod alteration of Rome as it would be a great shame to see it go even if the villa is, in hindsight, also interesting to use. Not that I'd have much problem copy and pasting it from older VP versions into post-rework Rome personally, but others might.
 
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axatin

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Okay, I think I can sponsor the Pax Romana part and the changes to civilizing mission and the shoshone UI. I can't implement the new improvement, though.
 
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