Beyond Earth - a flawed, underrated gem

Guide-on

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If you think about it, it makes sense. We have gunboats now and we have not developed space travel yet. Light infantry units weight much less than armored units, and the atmosphere may not be good for the ICE that tanks need. What the game needs is better late round aliens. This should come through the quest feature. If you tame the aliens in the quest some will escape and inject their genes into the environment. You will get a note the the AI have done so if you go Purity.
 
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Guide-on

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The Power tree has a virtue that if you capture an outpost, you can make it your outpost (instead of it being destroyed). It should be if you capture a station you get to turn it into an outpost. I think that was probably what the developers originally intended, but changed for reasons unknown to me. The AI is always attacking the stations as if they could capture them.
 

vorlon_mi

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Any thoughts on colonists turned outposts prior to settlement?
This game is one of the only -- maybe the only -- one in the franchise where a settler/colonist does not immediately form a city. It's an interesting decision by the designers, and opens up options like the virtue to take over an outpost, or an agreement where outposts can defend themselves. I can't say I'm a big fan, but I don't hate it either.

Regarding AI attacking stations -- I always assumed that the AI was either following a quest, or the AI knew that I had a trade route with the station and was trying to damage my colony without openly declaring war.
 

Guide-on

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One of the major problems is that you only need 12 affinity to build the victory wonder. This makes it easy to find an "ideal" path to victory. If you had to research most of the web to get an affinity wonder victory, there would be multiple ways to research the web, and multiple strategies to win. I have read somewhere on this forum that the AI would never reach level 18 on the lower levels.

I would suggest that since the AI does not concentrate on one affinity, it should require everyone to research multiple affinities or techs that require the same thing. For example, if you had to have 16 in you primary and 12 each in the other 2, then the AI might reach that. Another way would be to require certain buildings that would be spread out, and would require certain techs, also spread out to build. The AI would only have to get to 16 and 12/12 on easy levels and 15 10/10 on hard.
 

legalizefreedom

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One of the major problems is that you only need 12 affinity to build the victory wonder. This makes it easy to find an "ideal" path to victory. If you had to research most of the web to get an affinity wonder victory, there would be multiple ways to research the web, and multiple strategies to win. I have read somewhere on this forum that the AI would never reach level 18 on the lower levels.

I would suggest that since the AI does not concentrate on one affinity, it should require everyone to research multiple affinities or techs that require the same thing. For example, if you had to have 16 in you primary and 12 each in the other 2, then the AI might reach that. Another way would be to require certain buildings that would be spread out, and would require certain techs, also spread out to build. The AI would only have to get to 16 and 12/12 on easy levels and 15 10/10 on hard.

Agreed. 16 sounds like a good number for a victory wonder. I'm guessing they didn't want the ending to drag, so I can respect that.

However, and I've advocated for this here in other threads, the choices you make for units should be exclusive. Once you make a choice for an affinity unit the other equal units of the other affinities should not be available to build. I'd at least like to make it an option if not a hard rule. That's how you make affinities mean something more than just more bonuses.
 

Protok St

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However, and I've advocated for this here in other threads, the choices you make for units should be exclusive. Once you make a choice for an affinity unit the other equal units of the other affinities should not be available to build. I'd at least like to make it an option if not a hard rule. That's how you make affinities mean something more than just more bonuses.
I could agree with that.
What about the affinity level bonuses? If 1 of 3 affinities is selected, then bonuses from other affinities are not added. What about this?
 

legalizefreedom

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I could agree with that.
What about the affinity level bonuses? If 1 of 3 affinities is selected, then bonuses from other affinities are not added. What about this?

I'm okay with those as is since they are generally related to the affinities. Not that they couldn't be improved. :mischief:
 

Guide-on

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There is a mod that makes getting affinity levels in multiple affinities very difficult. I don't like to use it, I gave the name of it on another thread. How about level 17 in one affinity or 13/13 in two or 10 in all? That way you have a choice depending on the situation, and there would be many ways to win. Going for contact should be like 12 in all three, but if you discover a piece from an expedition, you only need 12 in two.
 

vorlon_mi

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I could agree with that.
What about the affinity level bonuses? If 1 of 3 affinities is selected, then bonuses from other affinities are not added. What about this?

Seemed like one of the developer's intents for Rising Tide was to allow hybrid affinities. What's the attraction for walking that back?

I thought I remembered that one must achieve 15 to build the affinity wonder, not 12. I've only been able to max out the affinity at 18. Is that consistent with your experience?
 

Protok St

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Seemed like one of the developer's intents for Rising Tide was to allow hybrid affinities. What's the attraction for walking that back?
Probably the same attraction as for that:
Once you make a choice for an affinity unit the other equal units of the other affinities should not be available to build.
As you can see I made a sub question to this "intent".
In my mind I could suppose hybrids as a separate affinities ways.

I thought I remembered that one must achieve 15 to build the affinity wonder, not 12. I've only been able to max out the affinity at 18. Is that consistent with your experience?
Sorry, but I don't understand this question.
 

vorlon_mi

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In an earlier post, @Guide-on wrote that a player only needed to achieve level 12 in an affinity to build the game-winning wonder (gate or mind flower). That's not what I remember; I play with the Rising Tide expansion (BERT) and I remember needed to get to affinity 15 to build the wonder after researching the required techs. I wanted to check that I'm remembering correctly.
If the required level is truly 12, then I can alter my playstyle to build sooner.
If the required level is already 15, then I don't see a big difference between 15 and a proposed increase to 16.

Both @Protok St and @legalizefreedom seem to be arguing for more distinct, mutually exclusive affinities. As I read the intent of the developers in their release notes, they intended for more hybrid affinities with the Rising Tide expansion, to give players more choices, not fewer. I'm curious why you two want to change the game *back* to the prior behavior. What about having mutually exclusive affinities is more attractive, more fun, for you?
 

legalizefreedom

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In an earlier post, @Guide-on wrote that a player only needed to achieve level 12 in an affinity to build the game-winning wonder (gate or mind flower). That's not what I remember; I play with the Rising Tide expansion (BERT) and I remember needed to get to affinity 15 to build the wonder after researching the required techs. I wanted to check that I'm remembering correctly.
If the required level is truly 12, then I can alter my playstyle to build sooner.
If the required level is already 15, then I don't see a big difference between 15 and a proposed increase to 16.

Both @Protok St and @legalizefreedom seem to be arguing for more distinct, mutually exclusive affinities. As I read the intent of the developers in their release notes, they intended for more hybrid affinities with the Rising Tide expansion, to give players more choices, not fewer. I'm curious why you two want to change the game *back* to the prior behavior. What about having mutually exclusive affinities is more attractive, more fun, for you?

Yes, I think that threw my thinking off too. 15 is the affinity requirement. It should be a bit higher on paper, but there's the argument that the game is won or lost by that point anyway, so go ahead and end it. And I generally agree with that.
But there is a bunch more affinity on the web. You could raise the max to 20 and have the wonder level be 18.

Hybrid affinities are why I make that suggestion. The issue is you level all affinities up naturally and can then build any unit in the game which makes the choice of affinity less meaningful. You never really have to make a choice. You just have to wait a bit longer to get the units from the other affinities. You can always have all units so what choice have you made?
It's not changing it back, it's accounting for the changes they made. Right now, you probably always just take the first upgrade that becomes available to you (and a lot of times these are the hybrid options because they have lower requirements). Why? Because you'll get the other units later anyway. There's not much point in holding out for a pure affinity. All the choices are good. Let's require the player to make them.
 

Guide-on

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I'm sorry about stating affinity 12 instead of 15. (What is the emoji for embarrassed?) I always use a mod that makes it 18. I like 4X; not 3X build a VC wonder. Exterminate should be the primary option, with affinity as a change. That said, I would like to have hybrid affinity victories.

If there are any modders listening, I would also like there to be affinity navel units.
 

Protok St

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Both @Protok St and @legalizefreedom seem to be arguing for more distinct, mutually exclusive affinities. As I read the intent of the developers in their release notes, they intended for more hybrid affinities with the Rising Tide expansion, to give players more choices, not fewer. I'm curious why you two want to change the game *back* to the prior behavior. What about having mutually exclusive affinities is more attractive, more fun, for you?
@legalizefreedom said better than I could:
The issue is you level all affinities up naturally and can then build any unit in the game which makes the choice of affinity less meaningful. You never really have to make a choice. You just have to wait a bit longer to get the units from the other affinities. You can always have all units so what choice have you made?
It's not changing it back, it's accounting for the changes they made.
*** All the choices are good. Let's require the player to make them.

But I can show it from another perspective.
For me The Affinity is a way to choose the ideology of the society, it's goals and future.
But if regardless of the choice we get the same bonuses and the same units, then what is the choice?
We have a bunch of bonuses and units and can access them any time, no matter what future society we want to construct. It doesn't matter what color the bonuses are colored and how many categories they are divided into.

In my personal understanding, if there are 3 competing ideologies and the society chooses to move in the direction of one of them, then members of the society naturally refuse to use the methods (bonuses, units) of other ideologies. This is the meaning of choice.

If talk about hybrid affinities, then for me these are 3 separate ideologies with own bonuses and units. 3 + 3 = 6 variants to choose from.
 

vorlon_mi

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Hybrid affinities are why I make that suggestion. The issue is you level all affinities up naturally and can then build any unit in the game which makes the choice of affinity less meaningful. You never really have to make a choice. You just have to wait a bit longer to get the units from the other affinities. You can always have all units so what choice have you made?
It's not changing it back, it's accounting for the changes they made. Right now, you probably always just take the first upgrade that becomes available to you (and a lot of times these are the hybrid options because they have lower requirements). Why? Because you'll get the other units later anyway. There's not much point in holding out for a pure affinity. All the choices are good. Let's require the player to make them.

I haven't been playing as long as you have, but the bold section has not been my experience. For the first 3 levels, yes, I agree. Somewhere around turn 50, I usually decide what affinity VC that I intend to pursue.
- If I have enough land available, so that I could easily settle groups of Earthlings and build magrails, I go for Purity. If it's more of an archipelago map, with my cities on smaller islands and aquatic cities, I avoid Purity
- If I have an excellent science rate, so that I could get all 3 final techs, I go for Harmony. It's one of my favorites, in my avatar
- Otherwise, I go for Supremacy

Once I've made that decision, I choose techs to get me the affinity I want. My games have been something like 15, 6, 4 in the other affinities; or 15, 7, 7. My goal is to reach level 15, build the manufactories, and research the final tech about the same turn.
Only occasionally do I need to mount an invasion to destroy an AI beacon being built.

If I'm going for Domination, that's part of my planning from turn 0. My choice of sponsor, my choice of loadout, my choice of planet.

It would be a fun challenge to get all the affinities to level 15. I'm more focused on trying to get the achievements for all the virtue synergy bonuses. My habit (or is it a crutch) is to take nearly all the virtues in Prosperity so that my Health stays green through turns 100-200. By turn 175 or so, I've built enough buildings and taken enough virtues that I'm permanently healthy.
 

legalizefreedom

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I haven't been playing as long as you have, but the bold section has not been my experience. For the first 3 levels, yes, I agree. Somewhere around turn 50, I usually decide what affinity VC that I intend to pursue.
- If I have enough land available, so that I could easily settle groups of Earthlings and build magrails, I go for Purity. If it's more of an archipelago map, with my cities on smaller islands and aquatic cities, I avoid Purity
- If I have an excellent science rate, so that I could get all 3 final techs, I go for Harmony. It's one of my favorites, in my avatar
- Otherwise, I go for Supremacy

Once I've made that decision, I choose techs to get me the affinity I want. My games have been something like 15, 6, 4 in the other affinities; or 15, 7, 7. My goal is to reach level 15, build the manufactories, and research the final tech about the same turn.
Only occasionally do I need to mount an invasion to destroy an AI beacon being built.

If I'm going for Domination, that's part of my planning from turn 0. My choice of sponsor, my choice of loadout, my choice of planet.

It would be a fun challenge to get all the affinities to level 15. I'm more focused on trying to get the achievements for all the virtue synergy bonuses. My habit (or is it a crutch) is to take nearly all the virtues in Prosperity so that my Health stays green through turns 100-200. By turn 175 or so, I've built enough buildings and taken enough virtues that I'm permanently healthy.

I can appreciate that. There are many ways to play. I always enjoy hearing about how others like to play.

What I mean is there are techs you want regardless of what affinity you're going for (and I want all the techs :D), so all affinities eventually make it up near your prime affinity. Most of my games end up with all three maxed, but I don't rush. I play it out. On the highest difficulty, the AI rushes me a bit too much, so I generally play on Soyuz.

I'm big on variety, so I keep track of all the options on a spreadsheet (civ, affinity, biome, hybrid options I choose, victory type) and choose different combinations each time. I understand some people like to do it spontaneously and that's cool too. I do that when multiple options are open, then after the game, log what happens to make sure I don't do the same things over and over. However, I do set the loadouts to random every time. I do it for civ also when there are several options left on the table.

@vorlon_mi
I could definitely get behind an option to restrict bonuses as well, but some balancing would probably need to happen to make it smooth. Maybe not though. Maybe it would be cool to just do without what you weren't about. I can see that adding variety also. But I wouldn't want that to be the only way to play. Same with the unit suggestion. They are doing game modes now, so we can think of these as a couple of game modes.
 
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vorlon_mi

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I love the idea of keeping track of which options I have played in a spreadsheet. When I was (am) going through Civ 3 trying to play all the civilizations, I used a spreadsheet also.

My rush to victory comes from playing other games in the franchise. In Civ 3 -- and especially Civ 4 -- one must work to achieve victory before the AI does. If I don't build the UN in Civ3, I could lose to an AI achieving a diplomatic victory. The AI in Civ4 will aggressively expand and attack the human player if I don't stay on top of things.

The Civ 5 AI is somewhat aggressive, though I haven't played enough Civ 6 to form an opinion.

I continue to be surprised at the AI in BERT. In a recent game, Samatar had both parts of the Signal, but waited 20 turns to begin the "Decode Signal" project. And then built other wonders in his capital, that were NOT the Beacon. He didn't start *constructing* the Beacon (let alone powering it up and waiting for connection) until I had begun pushing units through my Emancipation Gate. Seems like the AI drive down to the 5 yard line, and then stall.
 

Imaus

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I wish there was one more expansion to fill the alien world more. More native alien units. A few new human post-landfall factions - Separatists, weird niche groups, stuff like that. More tech to extend the game with more applicable in-universe applications. The satellite stuff was interesting but I never used it much as by then I was almost done with the game. The Hybrid factions were great, we needed more stuff like that.
 

legalizefreedom

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I continue to be surprised at the AI in BERT. In a recent game, Samatar had both parts of the Signal, but waited 20 turns to begin the "Decode Signal" project. And then built other wonders in his capital, that were NOT the Beacon. He didn't start *constructing* the Beacon (let alone powering it up and waiting for connection) until I had begun pushing units through my Emancipation Gate. Seems like the AI drive down to the 5 yard line, and then stall.

I'm sure it's not intentional, but I like to see the AI priorities as: Survive, Thrive, Win. In that order. Just because they can Win doesn't mean it's their highest priority. If they have a good opportunity to Thrive a bit, they will, esp if no one else is making a push for victory,
Some say the AI is bad because of this, but I see it as more realistic. Similar to Trade and Diplomacy. It kind of forces you to be real without all the janking of the AI you do in the main games.

@Imaus
Absolutely, I've told anyone that would listen... This game wasn't finished. It's pretty clear. I would agree with your ideas. There are several clear examples of units that weren't filled in. The world gave up on this game and it is a shame.
The thing that is really missing from the satellite game is the ability to move them. Esp the attack satellites. They are good for an attack or two and then they are useless most times. They could be much more relevant if you could move them one hex per turn.
 
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