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[GS] Add ‘Wheat’ as a strategic ressource

Discussion in 'Civ - Ideas & Suggestions' started by Deggial, Dec 17, 2018.

  1. Deggial

    Deggial Emperor

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    This post is about utilizing the next expansion’s game mechanics a little bit further and possibly making the game more balanced by doing so.

    What, if the current bonus ressource ‘Wheat’ would become a “semi” strategic ressource and gain its own stockpile in the top bar?
    This ressource would not be needed to build units, but to only to maintain them.

    The reason for this proposal:
    - Cavalry units (and especially knights) are the strongest units in the game. A game mechanic that limits their numbers might be worthwhile. Furthermore, knights won’t need iron any more but relay on the even more available horse ressource. (Balance changes in the ressource distribution and yields notwithstanding.)
    - Modern cavalry units feature a limiting mechanic as they need oil to not only build them, but also to fuel them and hence have a “running cost”. Furthermore, oil has a civilian use (electric power) as well. This not only limits their availbale numbers and acts as a balance tool, but also is an interesting game mechanic.
    - Why not also introduce a “fuel” mechanic for cavalty units before tanks?

    The proposal in detail:

    a) Wheat and pre-modern cavalry units.
    - All horse-dependant units before tanks (whether they actually need horses to be built or not is irrelevant) should require ‘wheat’ to be maintained.
    - Light cavalry units will consume -1, heavy cavalry units -2 ‘wheat’ ressources from the stockpile. (Even higher numbers could be neccesary for a good balance. Maybe -2 and -3.)
    - Wheat is an abundant ressource. A stockpile increase of +1 increase per turn and ressource tile should be enough.
    - The maximal stockpile could be increased by building ‘granaries’. This is mostly an immersion-based reason, as granaries are probably build in all cities anyway. If this is too boring or not restrictive enough or too inconsistent, encampments could work as storages for wheat as well.

    b) Wheat and disasters
    In order to introduce a civilian use of this ressource, ‘wheat’ stockpiles could be used in another of the new game feature: disasters - namely droughts.
    - If a drought hits a city, -1 wheat per citizen and turn would be consumed from the stockpile. As long as there is wheat left, no starvation would happen in the city.
    - This would create the choice: Should I use all the available wheat harverst to maintain my mobile army, or should I gather a large stockpile in order to secure the wellbeing of my civilians in the case of a disaster?
    - If the drought strikes a city with multiple wheat tiles, their contribution to the wheat stockpile will stop for the duration of the drought and until they are repaired afterwards, possibly leading to negative stockpile growth. This would also impact the decision how many cavalry units are safely maintainable.

    Unfortunately, we are way too close to the launch date to implement (and internaly test) such an impactful game mechanic.
    But just in general ... what do you guys think about this proposal?
    Would you like it?
    Would it mitigate the domination of cavalry units and help to balance army composition at all?
     
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2018
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  2. pgm123

    pgm123 Emperor

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    Why wheat and not corn or rice? Or barley? Wheat isn't typically fed to horses.
     
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  3. Deggial

    Deggial Emperor

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    First of all: Thank you for saving this thread from the "Zero Reply Embarrassment". :D
    It really didn't fly well ... (I wonder why, by the way. Is the proposal so bad? Or boring? Or too long to read?)

    Anyway, back to the topic and your question:
    Wheat is at least in the game and as close to oat as we can get. It can be taken as generalized grain (and therefore could represent barley as well).
    In contrast to rice it is grown under "dry" conditions (instead of watered fields that improve swamp tiles).

    Corn isn't in the game either and rice even further away from horse food.
     
  4. Stringer1313

    Stringer1313 Emperor

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    I think I'd simplify this just to have all special units from any era require a per-turn maintenance cost just as tanks do. So all horse units require 1 horse per turn just like all tanks require 1 oil per turn.
     
  5. Deggial

    Deggial Emperor

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    I wouldn't be against this simplification.
    Horses die or just age and have to be replaced constantly, after all.

    The one thing this doesn't add though (beside the stronger immersion of constant feeding = fuel consumption) is the opportunity to interlink a civil aspect (the famin protection) and the created conflict of interests.
     
  6. pgm123

    pgm123 Emperor

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    You could just have them take food maintenance. That was done in Civ IV with one of the government policies.

    I do wish they replaced wheat with "grains." You could keep rice different because most rice is grown differently, but wheat, barley, corn, millet, etc. are on dry, cultivated land.
     
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  7. Stringer1313

    Stringer1313 Emperor

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    Good point. I'm digging the food idea (maybe not use wheat or rice or whatever, but just food generally).
     
  8. Trav'ling Canuck

    Trav'ling Canuck Deity

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    I would love to see population growth be based on the general health of the city, with a lack of food simply a negative modifier to that growth, rather than the core driver of population growth. The introduction of "housing" was an interesting step in this regard, but you could go further.

    Having "food" then be the resource that you need to maintain military units in the field and government directed work forces ("Workers" or "Builders"), with a negative modifier to population growth if use too much for these purposes, could be a very interesting approach.
     
  9. Deggial

    Deggial Emperor

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    Wouldn't "food" be a unnecessary complication, though?

    "Food" obviously does exist all over the place as tile yields.
    However, it doesn't exist as "concrete" ressource.

    I tried to keep my suggestion as simple and consistent as possible.
    'Wheat" does already exist as a ressource.
    It should be (relatively) easy to treat it in the same way as iron, horses and all the other strategic ressources: add a symbol in the top bar and track the trend (increaing, stable, decreasing).
    No fundamentally new mechanic would have to be coded, no brand new rule explained to the player.
    It just would be an expansion of the already existing.
     
  10. leif erikson

    leif erikson Game of the Month Fanatic Administrator Supporter GOTM Staff

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  11. NukeAJS

    NukeAJS King

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    I think this is unnecessary as these mechanics are basically in the game or will be in the game.

    Knights will require iron as their upkeep. Not enough iron will result in weaker units. Having two resources seems unnecessary.

    For civilian uses -- This already exists in the game. All surplus food causes city growth. If there's food loss, it causes depopulation (you can use your imagination and imagine that it's emigration or death from starvation). In other words, your food surplus IS your stockpile. A city that eats as much as it produces has zero surplus. If said city were hit by a drought, it would fall into a food loss and result in starvation or emigration. If a city had a healthy surplus (say +6), and got hit by a drought, it might go to +1 or +2, maybe even 0, but would recover once the farms were put back up.
     
  12. Deggial

    Deggial Emperor

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    Can you provide a link to this?
    I don't think that iron will have any relevance in the the unit's upkeep. Horses will be needed to build it under [GS]. Iron is relevant only in the game's current version, but not in the future as far as I know.
    If what I claim is true, there will be no unit upkeep at all (other than gold, of course).

    This is quite obvious.
    What you describe is related to the basic food yields of all tiles around the city. Of course those will change during a drought.
    What I was suggesting in the OP was a mechanic that is related to a stockpile of one concrete resource (= 'wheat'). A stockpile that is relevant for both military and civilian use and therefore creates a conflict of interest - an interesting decision.
     
  13. Zaarin

    Zaarin Chief Medical Officer, DS9

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    No, we've seen in the live streams that knights require Iron. They should require Iron and Horses, strictly speaking...
     
  14. Deggial

    Deggial Emperor

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    Ah okay. Thank you for the correction.
    My last information was that Firaxis switched/unified the production requirement for all cavalry units to horses. (Or was this temporarily true and they switched it back?)

    Is there, however, also an iron upkeep? As far as I know (and I could be wrong again), Ed said there is no constant maintenance for early units. This is, what the suggestion wants to change for these powerful units. (And I want to change it in a more interesting way than just by the use of the military-only strategic resource ‘iron’)
    If I would be indeed wrong though and there is in fact a per turn iron upkeep, the case could be closed. A rwo resource upkeep wouldn’t make any sense, obviously. But I honestly don’t think I am wrong here ...
     
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  15. Zaarin

    Zaarin Chief Medical Officer, DS9

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    That is correct, so far as we know. I wouldn't mind if there were: armor gets broken or rusted, horses die or wear out. The reason historically kings didn't field massive armies of knights is that knights cost a fortune to maintain, making it more cost-effective to field some knights but mostly hastily drafted peasants with pointy sticks...
     
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  16. Deggial

    Deggial Emperor

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    Thank you for the confirmation, Zaarin.

    Well then.
    Iron or horse upkeep would be acceptable too, of course.
    Easier to program anyway (as the code is basically already in the game) and therefore with a real chance to make it into the game - and insofar better than my initial suggestion. ;)

    I still would love this relation to other (non-military) game mechanics, but stuff it ... :D
     
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  17. Bechhold

    Bechhold King

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    They just need to go back to how Civ IV trade worked. All commodities were subject to trade.
     
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  18. Phrozen

    Phrozen King

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    and mercenaries. Some of those peasants became professional soldiers and of course laws were passed requiring a certain amount of peasants to own arms and practice with them. There was no disarmed populace in Europe like there was in the East.
     
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  19. Aussie_Lurker

    Aussie_Lurker Deity

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    Rather than making wheat a Strategic Resource, I'd rather see all bonus resources (sheep, cows, wheat, corn, barley, stone, copper etc) become trade-able resources that each grant empire wide benefits based on how many copies of the resource you have-either locally or via trade. Most food resources would grant Housing (aka health) & food, whilst cows & sheep might also grant bonus production. Stone & Copper would probably produce Empire-wide production & gold. Other bonus resources might generate production, food, housing, culture or gold, empire-wide.

    They had something like this, for food resources, back in Civ4......& I think it is high time it returns-& gets expanded upon-in Gathering Storm.
     
  20. The googles do nothing

    The googles do nothing King

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    How would you separate what is used locally and what is traded, and what would be the difference in benifits? I like this idea but i'm not sure what the in-game choice you would be making is? Perhaps you have two different improvement for tiles one for production and one for trade.

    To piggyback on your idea I would like to see civ's be able to specialize in a resource. I proposed in another thread that the first civ to get two of a luxury would specialize that and get 4 amenities and other civ's would then only get one. You could then trade for the specialized 4 amenity resource. I think these too mechanics would really work with the idea of wheat and rice as trade-able commodities.
     

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