Authority Deep Dive Round 2

axatin

Warlord
Joined
Jul 24, 2022
Messages
114
I also think the garrison bonus makes little sense for Authority. Surely, defence is the last thing it needs for that tree. It would make more sense for anyone taking tradition to have bonuses for garrisoned troops in its cities.
Yes, a garrison bonus doesn't make much sense for Authority. But for tradition is would have little effect as tradition players have few cities. In my opinion, it would fit best to Fealty, as that is the tree already focusing on city defense in wide play.

In the pantheon thread, there was a discussion about culture and policies that has got me thinking:
The standard build order for a new city is Monument followed by Shrine. [...] [Nerfing the culture bonus of Ancestor Worship is] problematic, culture is king, especially in teh early game. Early culture is so valuable because early policies are very strong and formulative, and also because my production is so low. High science isn't that useful yet, because I have a dozen things I can't build due to production shortages. But culture tends to give me immediate bonuses with no work required, basically giving me "magic hammers" during that key early game. Giving that up is a MAJOR sacrifice.
If culture is so much more important than everything else that it's basically a no-brainer to focus on it in the early game, then that's an indicator of a more general balance problem. There should always be different options to choose from. So, instead of just talking about buffs to Authority as the weakest of the three trees, it would be better to also discuss nerfing Tradition/Progress. That being said, I completely agree that there are problems with Authority that should be addressed (it's too unreliable, it encourages gamey behavior), but without buffing it too much.

Authority's identity is war, if its not warring....well then Progress is just superior....and frankly should be as the peaceful wide tree, its literally doing its job.
That's correct of course. But the issue here is that currently, progress is not a peaceful wide tree, it's just a wide tree. When playing Authority, you need to be constantly at war. Progress, on the other hand, gives you passive bonuses all the time. Playing wide is the only requirement for Progress to work, other than that you can do whatever you want. And that's one of the reasons why Progress can be a comparable or even better choice than Authority for wide conquest play.

To sharpen the distinction between the two trees and the playstyles they should encourage, what about for example giving the happiness bonuses from Progress->Equality only if the player is not at war?
 

Amask

Oogala Boogala
Joined
Feb 7, 2002
Messages
844
Location
Toronto
There could be bonuses that aren't tied to war, but to other hostile actions.
- building a city in someone's face
- claiming tiles with your city that are within 3 tiles of another player's city

If there are tensions with your neighbors, that gives your population something to get angry about and unite against, instead of getting angry at you.
What would that translate into in game terms?
Only thing that makes sense in terms of flavour is happiness and production, but that's what not authority needs more of.
Maybe someone more creative than me can run with this and find a way to make this give science/culture for some reason.

We could also give bonuses to actions that would make a chauvinistic population happy.
- having a highly experience unit parked in a city. The more promotions, the higher the benefit. Fewer than 4 promotion give no benefits.
- simply having a large army. You could get some bonus for every position above median that you are in army ranking. Biggest army? Big bonus. 2nd biggest? Smaller. Average? Nothing.
 

ma_kuh

Prince
Joined
Sep 13, 2022
Messages
340
What if Authority did something with Laborers? Made them sort of like Great General/Admiral specialists or something. Could be a key mechanic (multiple policies go into the gimmick) or just a unique trait (feeds into Citadels which claim territory which feeds Yields-On-Border-Growth [would need to make it trigger on non-natural growth]).

Currently Laborers are: +1:c5production: -2:c5food:.
So something like: +2:c5production: +1:c5greatperson: Great General Points to Laborers. (Great Admiral for coastal cities)
Or: Cities with a garrison generate +1:c5gold:, :c5science:, :c5culture: for each Laborer in the city.

AI probably doesn't know how to opt into Laborers, or maybe it does?
 

Stalker0

Baller Magnus
Joined
Dec 31, 2005
Messages
9,564
One idea as a part of one policy:

Newly founded and conquered cities gain +3 happiness for 25 turns (game speed scaling).

The idea is that this helps Authority overcome the happiness problems of early conquest and allows them to actually expand wider than progress and tradition give the same amount of happiness.
 

Stalker0

Baller Magnus
Joined
Dec 31, 2005
Messages
9,564
Opener: +25% combat bonus versus barbarians, reveal barbarian camps. +1 prod per city. Gain culture when killing units and clearing barbarian camps.
Scaler: +1 prod per city.
Imperium (1st left policy): Cities gain 20 gold and production when expanding borders, era scale. Gain 40 science and culture and founding or conquering cities, scaling based on era and population.
Tribute (2nd left policy): Gain a free settler. Killing a military unit generates science based on the strength of the unit. Gain 25% of tribute from city states as culture.
Dominance (1st right policy): The barracks generates +1 happiness and +2 culture. Unit supply from population increases by 10%.
Militarism (2nd right policy): Melee units heal for 15 after killing a military unit. -15% to Unit Maintenance, -50% to road maintenance.
Honor (3rd right policy): +10% CS, free unit every 10 pop, -25% to war weariness.
Finisher:
Border expand bonuses doubled. Can purchase mercenaries. Can Purchase Great Generals with Faith.

Coming back to this idea. I changed the free settler back to the 3rd policy, I like the idea that natural expanding can get the science/culture bonus earlier but an early settler that early was probably a bit too much. In general, I don't think this is the BEST longterm solution for Authority, but I think it is an easy change that is a solid improvement with very little code change required. Ultimately we are using the same tools authority has, we are just enhancing the economic engine components early. This would give authority a boost without fundamentally changing its identity.

Ultimately I think there are a lot of opinions about authority and what would be best about it (I obviously have many myself), but this could be the best compromise, simple, easy, no identity changes.
 
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ma_kuh

Prince
Joined
Sep 13, 2022
Messages
340
First off, I like this version. I especially like border yields on a first-tier policy. I wonder though, do you think delaying the melee-heal will be too significant for keeping the ball rolling when trying to clear multiple barb camps around the continent?
 

Rekk

Emperor
Joined
Dec 9, 2017
Messages
1,998
Opener: +25% combat bonus versus barbarians, reveal barbarian camps. +1 prod per city. Gain culture when killing units and clearing barbarian camps.
Imperium (1st left policy): Cities gain 20 gold and production when expanding borders, era scale. Gain 40 science and culture and founding or conquering cities, scaling based on era and population.
Tribute (2nd left policy): Gain a free settler. Killing a military unit generates science based on the strength of the unit. Gain 25% of tribute from city states as culture.
Dominance (1st right policy): The barracks generates +1 happiness and +2 culture. Unit supply from population increases by 10%.
Militarism (2nd right policy): Melee units heal for 15 after killing a military unit. -15% to Unit Maintenance, -50% to road maintenance.
Honor (3rd right policy): +10% CS, free unit every 10 pop, -25% to war weariness.
Finisher:
Border expand bonuses doubled. Can purchase mercenaries

Coming back to this idea. I changed the free settler back to the 3rd policy, I like the idea that natural expanding can get the science/culture bonus earlier but an early settler that early was probably a bit too much. In general, I don't think this is the BEST longterm solution for Authority, but I think it is an easy change that is a solid improvement with very little code change required. Ultimately we are using the same tools authority has, we are just enhancing the economic engine components early. This would give authority a boost without fundamentally changing its identity.

Ultimately I think there are a lot of opinions about authority and what would be best about it (I obviously have many myself), but this could be the best compromise, simple, easy, no identity changes.
What's the Scaler? Does the Finisher still get purchasable GGs?
 

alchx

Warlord
Joined
Nov 29, 2016
Messages
216
I think 'Gain 25% of tribute from city states as culture' should be in Imperium (1st left policy). The player receives the second policy on turns 17-25, at which time he has 3-4 warriors who can start a raid on neighboring city-states, but which still need to be reached through hills, forests and rivers. Tribute from 2-3 CC and some savings allow you to almost immediately buy a worker and start working on a resource such as horses or iron.

If the tribute from CC is in Tribute (2nd left policy), then the player will be severely limited to 45-50 turns in gold. Meanwhile, the soldiers must accompany the free settler and clear the place for the future city from the barbarians, ensure the safety of the worker and prevent the robbery of their territory.

-----
Dominance (1st right policy): The barracks generates +1 happiness and +2 culture. Unit supply from population increases by 10%.
Militarism (2nd right policy): Melee units heal for 15 after killing a military unit. -15% to Unit Maintenance, -50% to road maintenance.

Healing during the fight will come too late, which will make it very difficult to try to capture even CC. And the early passive culture from the barracks will greatly speed up the discovery of new policies. I think it's better to swap them.
 

Siddorm

Chieftain
Joined
Mar 4, 2018
Messages
85
I believe that Authority has too much military emphasis. Here is a suggestion to reduce this military emphasis, whilst making Authority a little more similar to Tradition and Progress:
  • swap Militarism (Authority) with Equality (Progress), and
  • swap Dominance (Authority) with Sovereignty (Tradition).
 

Rekk

Emperor
Joined
Dec 9, 2017
Messages
1,998
I believe that Authority has too much military emphasis. Here is a suggestion to reduce this military emphasis, whilst making Authority a little more similar to Tradition and Progress:
  • swap Militarism (Authority) with Equality (Progress), and
  • swap Dominance (Authority) with Sovereignty (Tradition).
Could you write what the policies do? It's hard to remember off the top of my head, and you're talking about 4 of them.
 

rkkn

Warlord
Joined
May 28, 2019
Messages
188
Could you write what the policies do? It's hard to remember off the top of my head, and you're talking about 4 of them.

Militarism - garrison bonus and maintenance reduction
Equality - +happiness and -unhappiness
Sovereignty - artist slot and omega huge border growth
Dominance - heal/science on kill and supply scaling

Anyway I am definitely against the second swap. Sovereignty's giga border growth and the yields on border expand being in the same tree would be too strong.

A few parts are nice, though. Like the garrison bonus should be in one of the other two trees (tradition imo).
 

glaivemaster

Prince
Joined
Apr 9, 2008
Messages
499
Location
Leeds, United Kingdom
My biggest problem with Authority is that it gives you rewards for winning wars, but doesn't really give you much help to actually do so. I think there are 2 policies which do help, but not much: heal on kill and +10% combat strength.

Heal on kill is pretty nice, but again mostly when you already have an advantage. A bigger army with better teched units can push more aggressively thanks to this ability. If you're on par, you're probably not in a place to be killing units and getting away with it, even with +15hp.

+10% combat strength is obviously just good, but comes so late in the tree that you've probably lost your edge by the time you get there. By this point Tradition and Progress have long left you in the dust and if you need to conquer to catch up, good luck!

I don't have any solidly defined improvements, but my feeling is that Authority shouldn't just be focused on what happens when it wins wars, it should be focused on how to win wars. That means either giving it more abilities to help it do so, or more rewards for setting up the infrastructure that it wants to set up anyway. Putting the boost on barracks instead of garrisons is a good start - it rewards you for setting up the infrastructure that you wanted anyway.
 

pineappledan

Deity
Joined
Aug 9, 2017
Messages
8,241
Location
Alberta, Canada
Opener: +25% combat bonus versus barbarians, reveal barbarian camps. +1 prod per city. Gain culture when killing units and clearing barbarian camps.
Scaler: +1 prod per city.
Imperium (1st left policy): Cities gain 20 gold and production when expanding borders, era scale. Gain 40 science and culture and founding or conquering cities, scaling based on era and population.
Tribute (2nd left policy): Gain a free settler. Killing a military unit generates science based on the strength of the unit. Gain 25% of tribute from city states as culture.
Dominance (1st right policy): The barracks generates +1 happiness and +2 culture. Unit supply from population increases by 10%.
Militarism (2nd right policy): Melee units heal for 15 after killing a military unit. -15% to Unit Maintenance, -50% to road maintenance.
Honor (3rd right policy): +10% CS, free unit every 10 pop, -25% to war weariness.
Finisher:
Border expand bonuses doubled. Can purchase mercenaries. Can Purchase Great Generals with Faith.
You're missing that the tribute culture is doubled at the finisher as well, unless you intend to remove that from the tree.

Don't see the value of anything other than swapping the tribute culture and the yields on settle/conquest. That's the 1 change I consider an actual quality of life improvement.
I don't agree that the right side policies need to be touched; I especially don't like how this moves all of the science in the tree onto the 2 left policies.

If the garrison bonus is going to go away it has to go somewhere else. Getting rid of a unique mechanic and replacing it with the umpteenth building bonus is a deal breaker. I don't care if it's a "boring bonus", you're replacing it with something even more inert.
 

Stalker0

Baller Magnus
Joined
Dec 31, 2005
Messages
9,564
You're missing that the tribute culture is doubled at the finisher as well, unless you intend to remove that from the tree.

Don't see the value of anything other than swapping the tribute culture and the yields on settle/conquest. That's the 1 change I consider an actual quality of life improvement.
I don't agree that the right side policies need to be touched; I especially don't like how this moves all of the science in the tree onto the 2 left policies.

If the garrison bonus is going to go away it has to go somewhere else. Getting rid of a unique mechanic and replacing it with the umpteenth building bonus is a deal breaker. I don't care if it's a "boring bonus", you're replacing it with something even more inert.
Fair enough on the tribute culture, yeah goal was for teh finisher to remain untouched.

The science is moved into the left side so it comes online earlier. Right now people complain that the authority just can't keep up in science, and after playing several authority runs in a row just to see how it does, I have to agree. Your feeling ok after you take a few cities....then your next opponent is coming online with knights and your barely even close, and suddenly your realize that those cities you take don't mean a damn. This isn't meant to be QoL improvements, this is actually meant to increase the power of the tree by moving economic benefits earlier.

On the garrison bonus, sure happy to see it moved somewhere else, I think its a good mechanic, just not for authority.
 

ma_kuh

Prince
Joined
Sep 13, 2022
Messages
340
I agree with keeping the science triggers in separate paths. Moving the conquest/settling science and culture ahead will also help speed up follow-up policies, even with the settler still one policy deeper. You can then make the choice of going Tribute + Dominance to rush both science options, or go for the settler after Tribute.
 

pineappledan

Deity
Joined
Aug 9, 2017
Messages
8,241
Location
Alberta, Canada
The science is moved into the left side so it comes online earlier. Right now people complain that the authority just can't keep up in science, and after playing several authority runs in a row just to see how it does, I have to agree. Your feeling ok after you take a few cities....then your next opponent is coming online with knights and your barely even close, and suddenly your realize that those cities you take don't mean a damn. This isn't meant to be QoL improvements, this is actually meant to increase the power of the tree by moving economic benefits earlier.
If you keep the right side as is, but change the left side by moving the :c5science: on settle/conquest forward, you can get the :c5science:on kills exactly as fast. People can pick 1st left and 1st right, but now they have that as an option, instead of nesting it behind a 1st-tier policy. Its just as quick to get the science and less prescriptive if you leave the right side alone.

Moving the :c5science: on settle/conquest forward already makes the tree tech earlier/faster than it currently does. Regardless, I don't even agree that the goal should be tech parity with the other trees, so complaining that the other trees can outtech you is a false premise as far as I'm concerned.
 
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Stalker0

Baller Magnus
Joined
Dec 31, 2005
Messages
9,564
If you keep the right side as is, but change the left side by moving the :c5science: on settle/conquest forward, you can get the :c5science:on kills exactly as fast. People can pick 1st left and 1st right, but now they have that as an option, instead of nesting it behind a 1st-tier policy. Its just as quick to get the science and less prescriptive if you leave the right side alone.
Assuming 2nd left is still teh free settler, I'm always going to go that route, as that free settler is going to net me both a new city (which expansion is one of the major points of the tree) and more science/culture/prod/gold through the settling bonuses and that initial border expand bonus. 1st left then 1st right is not the optimal path to me.
 

ma_kuh

Prince
Joined
Sep 13, 2022
Messages
340
I think it's the perfect distribution though because if you're going for settler expansions and CS tributing, you're probably looking to at least be a little more conservative on your warring. You want to give your new cities a chance to start paying off; you want to be building buildings, not units.

If you don't have the space to make use of the extra settler, or plan to conquer some CS instead of tribute them, then picking up the melee-heal and science from kills is the natural choice. I think it's some nice flexibility, at least in theory.

I agree with you, I probably aim for the second settler most of the time as well, but I'm also not really missing the science on kill at that stage of the game. I'd want to try it this way first before assuming the science needs to be perfectly steamlined.
 
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