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Are we heading in the right direction with G&K?

Discussion in 'Civ5 - General Discussions' started by ggalindo001, Apr 9, 2012.

  1. ggalindo001

    ggalindo001 Warlord

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    After watching the demo yesterday, I noted the obvious, but yet I haven't come across many who have also said the obvious "outloud".....so here goes.

    The transition from Civ IV to Civ V gave many the impression, including me, that the producers were looking to simplify the game, and make it less complex, appeal to the masses, etc. This was not a welcomed step by me and many other hard-core Civvers, and in the end, probably didn't achieve the goals set forth. I recall soon after Schaefer left that the community was wondering if that would be the last of Civ V.

    Enter G&K and specifically the video yesterday. Judging from the video, and the other discussions around G&K -- it seems as tho we are moving back into a more complex, appealing more to the hard core Civvers type of game. Certainly not all the way there, but the pendulum is swinging back. This is welcomed and a relief.

    I was speaking to a friend of mine last night (both Civvers way back to the original civ) and we both believe that this is likely the first of two expansion packs. This one is obviously focused on the early game (religion), renaissance area and going into the industrial age (espionage), and introducing concepts back to make the game have a more strategic feel to it (esp. the way city state relations could work). This is very similar to what Warlords did for Civ IV -- expand out the mid-game offering, introduce new complex concepts, and leave us wanting even more. We are speculating that a second expansion pack could focus on the industrial/modern era, and possibly an expansion into the post-modern era.

    After watching the video, there are two areas that I still am in the "I'll believe it when I see it" mode -- one is AI.

    I'm not expecting some super stellar AI -- but the AI is so poor in Civ V, it can only really improve. However, with all of the new options, choices, etc., will the AI just simply be more at a disadvantage and more predictable, or will they really be able to manage all of the new strategic choices into a harmonized strategy. A tangent to this is around the "playing to win at all costs" mentality of the AI vs. previous Civ games where the AI was more balanced. I would like to think that my 5700 years of continual peace with my neighbour isn't going to be all of a sudden backstabbed because they sense advantage. I like that religion and later government will help drive alliances and relations.

    The second is specifically around city states. The concept of one ally per city state is not very realistic. In the 'real world', many smaller nations had strong agreements and alliances with multiple major powers. So, we will have to live with that limitation -- however, I'm looking forward to seeing the proposed implementation of city states and the ability to really change the game from a strategic standpoint. Right now, the system is horribly broken with alliances being handed to the highest bidder.

    I do like where they are headed with religion and espionage -- looks to be very customizable based on style of play and game situation. It would be nice if they took a similar fresh approach to looking at the economic and technology systems when contemplating another expansion -- on the technology side in particular. One peeve of mine is that there are certain techs that you always beeline for - it would be nice to implement something that shook that up a bit. I don't know what it could be....
     
  2. fat_tonle

    fat_tonle Prince

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    Just too early to say... we have to wait until all expansions and DLCs are released and the game is patched to completion. Then let the modders do their thing... ;)

    But until then, I don't think much will change. It SHOULD be more immersive, more complex, more sophisticated, more strategic, more detailed, but that is simply because of the added content and nothing more.

    I don't believe for a second the AI will make drastic improvements in combats and tactics. If you so choose to play on higher difficulties, the AI will simply get multipliers to overcompensate. That is how it has always been. There are limitations to what an AI can do in a single player game.

    I would just make multiplayer as seamless and as accessible as possible for people who still complain about that, and tweak the AI in every way from here to Sunday until we get something acceptable. Something that understands basic concepts and makes sensible decisions. We might get that. We might not get that. Right now I still think Civ IV AI is way better for the respective game and I don't see that changing with G & K.
     
  3. ggalindo001

    ggalindo001 Warlord

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    I agree -- Civ IV AI (esp. after the modders got a hold of it) was far more comprehensive and challenging than Civ V is (and may ever be). I do wish the DLL source is released at some point soon after release because I think that we will see a similar dramatic improvement in the AI from the community.

    I do think there is a piece of this that is changing/evolving -- I don't think this is an expansion of 'more is better' but rather an attempt by developers/producers in trying to upgrade the mechanics of the underlying systems to also be more complex or more strategic.
     
  4. bpower

    bpower Chieftain

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    Yeah, I dont think anyone is expecting the AI to start outwitting us with feigned retreats and ambushes, we just want it to stop doing patently stupid things like attacking piece-meal, leaving GGs or ranged units exposed and missing clear opportunities for punishing mistakes from the player.
     
  5. nokmirt

    nokmirt Emperor

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    On this we will have to wait for some real gameplay to see. All I know is that the devs know the AI is a huge issue in CiV. What they have done to fix it is anyones guess, but they need to improve it.
     
  6. fat_tonle

    fat_tonle Prince

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    Worst is when two AI's declare war on you and then declare war on each other like two turns later while you still have a formidable army... :confused:

    I still don't expect that to change. The AI has some dumb mathematical formula and if the % sways too far this way or that way, it will do as such, regardless of whether the decision makes no sense in the grand scheme of things.

    Ie) Lemme declare war on you now because you are human and your army is weak and I covet lands, regardless if you are a sensible ally that can perhaps threaten my rivals later on or help me in some other way.

    The AI will BS you more often than not if you pull slightly ahead. Be it through denouncing, canceling RA's through a DOW, anything to set you back, without regard of the consequences to itself for the rest game. Then, should it fail, it will beg for forgiveness but give you nothing in return, yet give into all the demands of a higher ranked civ, so another civ can pull even further ahead of you and widen the gap between the human and cpu controlled players.

    That is the only way the AI can compensate to beat you. Have a HUGE bias against the human player diplomatically, on top of the multipliers, while collaborating with one another. The problem being the AI doesn't collaborate well with one another because they undermine one another and are far more detrimental than they are beneficial to each other, and this lets the human player back into the game even at the highest difficulties.

    I think if you had a simple change where the AI is less likely to warmonger one another and more likely to forge viable allies with other AI's as opposed to human players, the AI would seem more challenging. The game probably already does that at higher difficulties, but you still can't have random denouncements and unprovoked aggression that leads to no one's benefit sans the human player. You cut that stuff out and make the AI's more passive to one another, while tweaking combat, you can get a quite difficult game that is near impossible to defeat on diety. Even though it isn't perfect, it is the best solution right now.
     
  7. Atwork

    Atwork Immortal

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    To me, it sounds like the biggest change here is that alliances won't be handed out to the highest bidder anymore.

    The devs have consciously de-emphasized the spending of money as a means of gaining favor with CSs. Instead, players will have to take certain actions or bring about certain results in order to gain favor with CSs. As the devs have said, the quest system has been revamped.

    So, instead of buying favor--players will compete for favor. Possibly several civs will set out to gain favor with a CS--but only one will actually obtain the favor. This results in a system that creates and enflames rivalries. This will better achieve the designers' goal of having CSs push the action forward--really forcing players to make important and potentially costly political/economic/diplomatic/military/etc. decisions.

    From the few details that have been released, the system sounds like a vast improvement. But, I reserve my judgment until I know more--or better yet, until I've played the expansion.
     
  8. Human Crouton

    Human Crouton Prince

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    I never understood why anybody thought that Civ 5 was aiming to be simpler than the previous versions. The only thing missing from Civ 5 vanilla that was in Civ 4 vanilla was religion.

    I love what I'm seeing with the expansion, but I am also in the "Wait and see" camp on AI and city-states. I'm sure they will both improve, but who knows by how much?

    As long as city-states can't just be bought outright, it will improve dramatically. Because right now, if one of my allied city-states gets conquered, I just buy another one instead of worrying about starting a war with another major civ. That change may make the player feel that city-states are as important as the computer seems to think they are.

    I don't expect much difference in the way the AI performs combat, but I really hope it changes the way it chooses its battles. I hate playing games where I seem to the only civ noticing Persia taking over my entire continent, and all of the other civs on my continent just keep fighting each other, or building more culture buildings even as tanks are on their border.

    Really, if they just made the AI smarter about what's going on, it wouldn't have to perform as well because strength in stupid AI numbers would at least cause some balance.
     
  9. snipperrabbit!!

    snipperrabbit!! Deity

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    The next question is : "Where is the wall ?"
     
  10. WeaselSlapper

    WeaselSlapper Prince

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    To the OP. My guess is that they won't put out another Expansion because all the DLC has taken the place of the second expansion. If you look at the timing of this expansion all it's coming out about the same time as BTS came out for 4.

    Honestly I don't understand why so many people don't like that the AI plays to win. If you play MP it's the same concept. It just means that it will be harder to win. I do think the AI needs to do a better job of ganging up on a run away civ (even if that civ is me) to keep the games competitive longer.

    I personally don't like that if I get to be the largest civ in the game by mid game, I'm pretty much guaranteed to win.
     
  11. apocalypse105

    apocalypse105 Deity

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    I t hinx so yeah I have seen a lot of improvement in diplomacy.

    The removal of the " you are winning the game" modifier I allready a sign that it is going to the right direction


    However nothing is certain
     
  12. Atwork

    Atwork Immortal

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    Because the AI's version of "playing to win" often means 'playing stupidly.' For example, the predictable backstabbing against superior opponents resulting in isolation from those the AI ought to be cooperating with.

    Simply put, too often the AI disregards the fact that cooperation, stability, relationship building, and group coordination is a viable strategy for achieving ultimate victory, if coupled with opportunism.

    The AI should be opportunistic, which is a separate consideration from a surprise war. Surprise war may be the means of exploiting an opportunity to achieve a certain beneficial outcome, but surprise war is not a beneficial outcome in itself. The AI does not understand this.


    Rightly so. Diplomacy was pretty much bonkers at release--but, it has been steadily improving over time. Diplomacy still needs improvement though, w/ more depth, nuiance, and options. I'd like to see the UN buffed, amongst other things. But overall, I do think GnK will offer very significant improvement. And as an aside, the mod infoaddicts really helps w/ diplomacy.
     
  13. apocalypse105

    apocalypse105 Deity

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    I totaly don't mind the AI acting like a human player and actualy tries to beat you

    The reason Why I don't like it is the way it is implented in the game .
    If they are making the AI to win the game and act like a human player why do they add diplomatic options like making a declaration of friendship and denounciations and other diplomatic modifier .


    They are giving the player the bad impression because you thinx you have diplomatic options but you don't because the AI isn't programmed to do it.


    And thats why people hate the AI is basicly beeing in the middle
    it play to win but it olso conducts diplomacy

    And that doesn't work well
     
  14. PhilBowles

    PhilBowles Deity

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    I like a lot of the ideas and improvements in principle, but I think they may either misunderstand what some of the people clamouring for "more complexity" wanted or, more cynically, that they're deliberately re-adding "detail for the sake of detail" mechanics to make the game seem more complex than it was, which I feel was a failing of other recent Civ incarnations. In particular, the pantheon beliefs, follower effects and the rest of the religious trappings outside the diplomatic arena don't seem a necessary addition or something anyone was asking for.
     
  15. nokmirt

    nokmirt Emperor

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    What I am glad about upcoming in the expansion is the fact that diplomacy has the chance not to break down over the whole game. Diplomacy can now go in whole new unseen directions depending on several factors. There is an actual chance for friendship, at least for the first half or last half of the game, maybe even the whole game. This kind of thing is missing in the current game. Also, the change to city states with their quest system, along with war weariness will make things much more interesting.

    The following two factors will change diplomacy for the better.

    1. Civs with like religions and influence have a better chance of getting along with each other.

    2. In the late game civs with the same ideology are likely to get along.
     
  16. Txurce

    Txurce Deity

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    Firaxis said that there were a lot of requests for religion.
     
  17. PhilBowles

    PhilBowles Deity

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    Agreed that they'll likely change diplomacy for the better - and I'm interested in the effects embassies will have, and whatever modifiers are associated with espionage and intelligence trading. But as I've noted before the situations you mention are far from "missing" in the current game, they're just difficult to establish and maintain.

    For religion, yes. But check the types of comments here about what people wanted from religion - the key thing is a mechanic that can spread between civs to affect diplomatic relations. No one's pining for the fact that you no longer need a religion to build temples, for instance, and not many for the loss of gold-farming shrines (except for one of my friends) - it's exactly this sort of peripheral "have a religion and gain game benefits everyone else lacks" mechanic that caused trouble with religion in Civ 4, and it's that that they've gone overboard with in Gods & Kings from what we've seen so far. Quite apart from the negative (to my mind) effect it has on flavour to add the active participation of gods into a Civ game - I'm not sure I'm sold on Civ: Age of Mythology.
     
  18. Txurce

    Txurce Deity

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    I have hopes that the Civ 5 system will be more satisfying than that of Civ 4, but we won't be able to say much more until we play G&K.

    I found it interesting (and understandable) that you interpret the pantheon effects as indicative of gods' active participation. I view them as a symbiotic effect where surplus generates belief, and belief improves performance. Maybe looking at it my way will help you like it more!
     
  19. PhilBowles

    PhilBowles Deity

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    That's what I'd have hoped for, but the way it's done makes that difficult to credit. It's the same thing that gave us a Temple of Artemis effect that improves fertility and archery, which I can just about accept as a flavourful one-off. Now we have a whole raft of godly effects. However much you may want to believe in faith healing, it doesn't actually work, and it certainly doesn't make anyone's soldiers superior field medics. Nor does carrying out fertility rites improve harvests.
     
  20. Txurce

    Txurce Deity

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    Unfortunately, I think you're mostly right on this.
     

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