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Bye for now, Civ 6 - It was nice getting to know you

Discussion in 'Civ6 - General Discussions' started by SCBrain, Nov 26, 2016.

  1. Drakarska

    Drakarska Epic Dadness

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    It's essentially the same thing. Using your example of pigs and 6 grass hills, I would probably spec that city as my HE/GG, especially if any of those hills popped a strat rez. If nothing else came out of the cities BFC, then yes, I would prioritize ENG's and prod based buildings just so I could have an additional prod city to assist in pumping out units/wonders. Hmnn, disagree with the 2nd part of your statement, as any additional food resource in a cities BFC is always a plus, whether for trade/growth, or health purposes. As for lack of cottages, hybrid economy is always better, and not every city needs to have any cottages. You'll want cottage placement priority along rivers or fresh water sources anyway.
     
  2. Drakarska

    Drakarska Epic Dadness

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    No kidding. Try a giant map at marathon speed during the REN era for a civic change. See how bad that hurts :(
     
  3. PhilBowles

    PhilBowles Deity

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    It's not that it 'fails' at being a strategy game, it's that it offers little of interest when the choice is as blatantly obvious as it is in Civ IV. It's less a question of getting better results by making choices that support one another than of getting no results if you don't. It's a bit like playing a chess game with 'Show Hint' as an option at every turn. Of course the game as a whole isn't that simplistic - this is in reference mainly to the core buildings, things like Wonders and a few buildings that provide multiple bonuses make it something of an oversimplification to boil the game down to this. But the point of focusing on that specific element was to try and explain one of the areas where I feel it failed.

    I'm talking specifically about the way Civ IV's building system was designed, and possibly I wasn't clear about that. The precise details of a given city location are irrelevant to whether you stack +X% culture buildings in cities producing culture or do the same for science buildings or production buildings - the location just defines which building chain you'll focus on.

    It's a bad thing if you want to think of cities as actual cities in a civilisation rather than production centres for resource X in a game; the point I made here was one about character. Birmingham is an industrial city - that doesn't imply it doesn't have libraries or indeed a university.

    Obviously Civ games are minimally realistic, but there's a definite middle ground between Civ IV's overtly gamey mechanics (one reason I could never stand that game's addition of Great People or unit promotions to the series, though I've grudgingly accepted I've lost that battle over subsequent iterations of the game) and a simulation. One of the things that has always puzzled me is that Civ IV, possibly the most mechanically explicitly "game-focused" entry in the series - at least prior to BNW - is often cited as being the one that feels most rather than least like leading a civilisation.

    I'd prefer overall to go back to basics and identify the core parts of the 'Civilization' name we want the game's cities to represent. Such things as Great People Farms really don't qualify - they reflect nothing that has ever existed in reality, even as an abstraction. Agricultural centres whose function is to support the remainder of the empire don't really exist (not a Civ IV issue - they haven't really existed since Civ I, the only iteration prior to Civ V where food could be traded). Trade routes in the recent game approximate something similar, but their bland handling in Civ VI and the fact that in both Civ V and Civ VI all domestic trade routes give a fixed food bonus regardless of a city's own food output or specialisation don't incentivise making 'food cities' for any reason other than boosting population growth.

    I think this is a comprehension issue as multiple people understood what I was driving at - the point that the fact that forests nominally affected health did not guide your strategic choices regarding when to remove them. If forests didn't have any association with health at all, there would have been no point even mentioning them in a discussion of health. The point was simply that the only real impact of terrain management on health is that health rewarded what you were going to do anyway (keeping forests to remove later, removing jungle, improving resources).

    At least one and I think multiple people came out in support of this very point, so I'm not sure what you're driving at.

    That's not quite correctly characterising my point - what I said was that the local micromanagement elements of health added little strategy, and nothing reiterating how the mechanics work has offered a real counterargument to that point. On the contrary a lot of people have emphasised all the global ways in which health is managed, which only supports my point.

    Yes, I'm opposed in principle to cluttering a game with systems that represent X for no better reason than that X can be represented. Game design should start from the basic premise of asking what the overall game represents, and should ensure that those systems fundamentally serve the goal of providing the player with a variety of tools with which to win the game - which ultimately is the point of playing it. A game should not start from the point - as Civ IV seemed to, and as BNW later did with its tourism and ideology systems - of saying "We want health in this game - how do we implement it?"

    The names and concepts are all fundamentally window dressing - we can call essentially the same system health in one game or housing in another, and hey presto they're representing two somewhat different things. We can set a game with identical or near-identical mechanics on Earth and give the factions historical names and we're looking at a historical game, or we can put it on Alpha Centauri with invented factions and have a sci-fi colonisation game. If you want a health system, just name one of the existing mechanics in a thematically appropriate way if you can't find a new one that adds depth instead of clutter.

    Slavery's almost the perfect example of my point above. It was a mechanically interesting, strategically useful game tool that justified its place in the game on that basis ... but was saddled with an unfortunately anachronistic name that conjured up Hollywood images of pharaohs whipping slaves to death to build pyramids rather than reflecting the way slavery ever worked in reality, at least at the sort of scales and time periods it was intended to represent. The mechanic was welcome but it could have done with a less immersion-breaking name - and could have been given one without any cost to gameplay.
     
  4. MyOtherName

    MyOtherName Emperor

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    If I were to use the analogy, it looks more like you're criticizing chess because the only way to capture pieces in chess is by the obvious mechanism of moving your piece onto theirs. (excepting en passant)

    The strategy of the game is not in figuring out what game mechanic allows you to capture the piece -- it's in knowing when you want to capture pieces and maneuvering the game into a position where it's useful to do so.


    If your point is "I don't like the role playing aspects of Civ 4", then I don't care; I know some people look for that, but I'm not one of them. And you should make that clearer; IMO you sound like you're saying "I don't like the gameplay of Civ 4 as a strategy game", and I bet most of the past few pages would have gone differently if your intent was more clear.
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2016
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  5. Tatran

    Tatran Deity

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    Why are you wasting your time on this guy? He came with the same crap (bashing civ4) when civ5 was released.
    If he's too blind to see why civ4 is clearly the godlike game and civ5 was not and probably civ6 also not, then that's his problem.
    Even the older civ iterations + smac were godlike games, because it had macromanagement. (sliders, high council, trade system, grouping your units, no meaningless micromanagement, no 1 upt, the player knows what's going on in the game, empire size, etc.)
    A godlike ruler doesn't care about peanuts, tedious repetitive actions or other useless info spamming every turn.
    With some drastic changes civ6 can become a godlike game as the first 4 iterations (civ5 is lost), if not it will be a disappointment forever and will probably mean the end of the whole series.
     
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  6. Drakarska

    Drakarska Epic Dadness

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    Because he is entitled to his opinion Tat's, just like everyone else on these boards. Most of his arguments are well laid out, but colored by his own personal opinion, and some contradict the point he is trying to make. I am merely seeking clarity as to why he see's the last 3 Civ iterations in the manner he does, especially where BTS is being used in comparison to BNW and Civ 6. Not to mention his viewpoint concerning the aspect of strategy games.
     
  7. PhilBowles

    PhilBowles Deity

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    That seems a considerably poorer analogy because knowing when/whether you want to build a +X% building of type A in a city producing resource type A is not a decision that is ever going to vary with strategic context - you aren't going to decide your production city needs a library in one situation and not in another

    City placement is closer, but that's a separate issue and I think some of the confusion here is because people are conflating the two, perhaps because they're used to seeing them as linked. The issue I'm trying to describe with the building system is that it amounts for the most part to make-work once you have already made the strategic choice - it's just a matter of teching up to the next tier, RTS-style.

    You don't even need to resort to analogy - the exact system was used in Rome 2 pre-Emperor Edition and, stripped of any decisions about city placement (which don't apply in Total War games) or any ability to customise via Wonders etc., it was widely recognised and widely decried for its strategically simplistic, cut-and-paste approach to building provinces.

    I'm responding to multiple points in a single post, some about gameplay and some in response to comments about the game's 'character'. A superficial tendency for people here to see everything in binary terms is something I've noticed (see Tatran's post below) that doesn't aid discussion.

    Civ IV had problems as a strategy game, and aside from the actual strategic issues was mechanically clunky almost across the board - that doesn't mean I didn't like its gameplay overall. Unfortunately comments like Tatran's, as much as they sound like over-the-top parodies of Civ IV fanboys, actually appear to be genuinely held opinions that won't brook even mild disagreement with the party line.

    It doesn't follow that because X was generally a good strategy game, every system was of deep strategic relevance - and the point Tatran mischaracterises now is indeed much the same as the one that was mischaracterised in Civ V: Civ V was a mechanically more elegant game whose systems were more directly functional with less extraneous clutter like health. Unfortunately the fundamental gameplay wasn't as strong, and while its intent was noble in offering strategic choices between such approaches as 'wide vs. tall', it was too heavy-handed with them - as with Civ IV's building choices, the choices along each path were too stereotyped and binary.

    I'm presuming from context you mean 'godlike game' to refer to the scale of management (as in a god sim)?

    And yet Civ IV was crammed with exactly this sort of city-scale micromanagement where other entries weren't to the same degree - that's precisely the point I've made about systems like health, micromanaging cities' population points etc. I'm afraid I'm not quite seeing the point being made here, since from your tone it doesn't seem you're intending to support what I've been saying.

    As for units, 1UPT can result in tediously repetitive unit movement - but not tediously repetitive unit production from build queues that regularly needed refreshing or changing to build a different unit type, as with older games. The Civ series as a whole would benefit from ditching the idea of fine-scale unit types and just creating generic army units, but the major part of the fan base wants more and more detail, more and more minor distinctions between units, and unique units. No way of handling that demand is going to be light on micromanagement. Similarly a true godsim approach wouldn't have the ruler caring about building granaries or libraries or deciding where to make basic improvements in the landscape, but Civ has never really been a "godlike game" in the way you appear to mean. That's the preserve of Paradoxesque 'grand strategy games'.

    Since you're using 'godlike' to refer to game scale rather than quality, why is a version of the game that isn't "godlike" necessarily a disappointment? Civ is first and foremost a computerised board game - Avalon Hill's Civilization inspired its design and Civ I had a little more than Axis and Allies level of detail. It had a shorter rulebook than half of Fantasy Flight's catalogue. The further Civ has moved from that and cluttered its systems the less it's felt like Civ to me, with Civ IV the most drastic departure. Its heritage, ultimately, is games whose only sense of making your cities and units feel as though they belong to the same empire is the colour of the pieces (as indeed was the case in Civ I - sometimes I still miss the coloured square unit and city markers).

    I haven't been drawing any direct comparisons between recent Civ iterations other than specific mechanics that are inherited or otherwise comparable across versions. I don't even subscribe to the idea that there's the equivalence between Civ V and Civ VI, exclusive of Civ IV, that you seem to (except, again, in terms of certain shared mechanics) save in a comment above summaring one of my earlier arguments from a different thread.
     
  8. MyOtherName

    MyOtherName Emperor

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    Some reasons a production city might want a library:
    • To run scientists to deal with a pre-alphabet economic crash. (or post-alphabet in vanilla, whether wanting to run scientists or building research)
    • The city has picked up enough commerce from tiles and trade routes to make it worthwhile
    • To give cultural pressure
    • As a prerequisite for a university, to meet the Oxford requirements
    • The city is working all of its good production tiles and still has surplus food to run specialists
    • The city is working all of its good production tiles and still had surplus food so you built cottages
    • You built cottages because you have enough hammers that you get better results if some production cities don't have a single-minded focus
    • You built cottages because you're transitioning from a hammer heavy early game to a long term economic development

    Also, reasons not to build a library in a commerce city:
    • You need to build a granary, for growth
    • Forge first will make your overall development faster
    • You're better off working more cottages than hammer tiles
    • You'll get a better return by building buildings to break a health/happiness cap to work more cottages
    • Military more important
    • Low slider
    (P.S. whether or not you capture pieces in chess is by moving your piece onto theirs doesn't change with strategic context)
     
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2016
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  9. ThERat

    ThERat Deity

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    Thought this thread was about bye to civ6. It seems to be a civ4 versus civ5/6 thread. We had that discussions plenty times.
     
  10. Ricci

    Ricci Prince

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    It`s more like: "What the heck is the Phil character trying to prove?!!! Thread"


    Ja! .. Civ V & VI are barely mentioned at this point. Phil`s relentlessly very elaborated answers, conclusions and ideas not matching the actual gameplay in it`s whole (mainly due to false premises I came to grasp) appear to have taken over the OP or/and any other sub thread that could have risen.
     
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2016
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  11. PhilBowles

    PhilBowles Deity

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    That's why I've stopped responding - it began only with simple observations about issues with very specific systems in Civ IV emerging from the Civ VI commentary - and later a discussion of subjective issues of 'character' - and I'm not interested in the Civ IV obsessives pursuing me across unrelated threads because they take umbrage at the notion that there might be any flaws in the design of even a good game, or that raising those might be relevant in the context of Civ VI (the fear apparently being that if it's relevant to Civ VI to mention something Civ IV could have done better, Civ VI must be a better game - which is of course complete nonsense).

    Due more, on my reading, to the apparent fact that people want me to be saying something I'm not, and if I won't oblige they'll just stereotype me as having said it anyway. My comments weren't about "the gameplay as a whole", as I made clear on multiple occasions. I've been characterized as "bashing Civ IV" as though problems with the health system were the entirety of gameplay, and of drawing comparisons across the "last three iterations" with the clear implication that I'm apparently finding Civ IV lacking overall in comparison (I don't. I've pointed out on other threads that Civ IV is probably the best of the three games, albeit perhaps not by as much as many of its fans believe - while Civ VI is pretty much undeniably the worst at this stage. My post-patch experience suggests Civ VI has improved to the point where it appears it has potential rather than being Beyond Earth 2, but that's not very high praise).

    Other people have stopped mentioning Civ VI, but my major contributions to this thread have been critiquing - mainly more negatively than not - Civ VI's systems - witness one post where I went into (requested) detail on the implementation of housing and amenities in Civ VI. The response to that post, aside from a "thanks for the comments on Civ VI", was an extended treatise exclusively focused on side issues I'd mentioned with Civ IV. I think you may need to look elsewhere if you're trying to find someone to blame for derailing the thread.
     
  12. PhilBowles

    PhilBowles Deity

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    All fair enough - though I think more a flaw at my end in that I chose an especially poor analogy (a basic resource boost building - for the game's most important resource, no less - that also has a cultural boost) than with my point as a whole. A bank in a production city might be a better example. But as has been pointed out, this is somewhat more of a distraction from the point of this thread than had been intended.
     
  13. PhilBowles

    PhilBowles Deity

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    I do like the visual impact, but I don't think terrain matters as much as it ought to. Too many of the adjacency bonuses overlap - from what I can tell (and the continued lack of a tooltip showing adjacency bonus types is an irritant) you build campuses when surrounded by enough mountains or rainforests (which is basically what you do with science cities in Civ V due to science boosts from observatories and jungle) and industrial districts in the places you'd build production buildings in any other Civ game. Otherwise you build pretty much whatever you want, as the other districts offer bonuses for the same basic types of terrain.

    Given a result that seems to match almost exactly what you'd build in Civ V anyway, at this point the district system seems something of a missed opportunity - just a way of slowing early production.

    I particularly dislike this, actually. Religion as a set of bonuses that help you towards your end game, as in Civ V or Civ IV, and potentially to disrupt a religiously-focused opponent in Civ V and Civ VI, is a good addition and not intrusive - you can take advantage of it or not as suits your strategy.

    But the religious combat system is rather absurd, and while it seems uncommon that any AI can actually realistically reach a religious victory (as in almost all sessions there will be multiple AIs spamming religion at one another), having to care about a game system you otherwise don't need to interact with for no other reason that it might randomly win an opponent the game feels like very poor design. It's trying to force you to care about something because that thing isn't well-integrated into the core game; tourism has the same problem.

    You have to be the first person I've heard say this. There was at least one thread asking how culture victory worked and expressing puzzlement at random culture wins out of nowhere. It still seems very obscure how the numbers of international tourists shown on the cultural victory screen are generated (domestic tourists appear to be a direct product of culture, but it takes detective work to find this out and since - unlike BNW - there's no way of identifying your total accumulated culture over time it's not clear how numbers of domestic tourists relate to cultural output).

    My problem with the tourism system above all - aside from not having much liked it in BNW once the novelty wore off, and still disliking the name - is that tourism has exactly no game meaning. It's just a victory counter, like score. In BNW it at least interacted with the trade and ideology systems (greater cultural pressure gave greater trade rewards).

    I generally like this for the sake of completeness, but I'd rather have leaders who are accurately portrayed rather than variety for the sake of variety. Catherine de Medici in particular, it's been pointed out by many people, really ought to be Cardinal Richelieu - who would be a very good French leader choice but happens not to hit the female leader quota.

    I haven't made as much use of it as I probably should have.

    I don't know whether I like this or not. Having workers produced without costing population took getting used to in Civ V. Spamming the map doesn't really have much of a cost, and with the Civ IV health system reintroduced not having a way to cut population actually limits your options for managing housing.

    On balance I like this, but improvements turn out to be more important than you might think from the fact that your tiles have to compete for districts and Wonders as well. Three charges per builder seems low in the early game when you might not be able to afford to create a new builder per city, while the bonuses to numbers of charges are too late in the civics tree to be relevant (as you've either improved all your land or builders take almost no time to produce by that point). That may just be a case of my not optimising production to hit a new builder every time I hit 3 extra pop, however there are going to be cases where you want to improve a tile you aren't using. It can also be frustrating if you have to make new builders to repair improvements (unless you keep one around on one charge for this sole purpose).

    I wonder whether the BE system (exploration rovers run out of charges, but don't vanish when they're used up and can replenish them) would work well in Civ VI.

    I dislike this because it removes a major part of the decision-making regarding trade and doesn't reward specialising a trade city as in BNW.

    I strongly dislike the loss of the specialist system - unfortunately both Civ IV and Civ V redefined specialists as existing almost purely for GP points rather than for their resource boosts, and now that district buildings fill that role specialists don't serve a purpose. I've never much cared for the Great People system since it was introduced, but ironically I actually play GP-heavy strategies in Civ VI and one of my complaints about the AI is that it appears unable to do so given how strong this seems to be. I'll nearly always take the Divine Spark pantheon, for instance, and I prioritise an early campus for the GS points. GP strategies in Civ VI mostly seem to revolve around building to a faith strategy with or without a religion.

    Great Prophets specifically are also very awkwardly handled in the new system, as most holy site buildings come too late to make relevant GP points and holy site GP points themselves become completely irrelevant once you either have a religion or run out of prophets.

    It's counter to the Civ V approach at least, but nothing in Civ VI rewards going tall and the district system is fundamentally inimical to doing so as it stands, since going tall reduces the number of duplicate districts you can produce. I can sympathise to a degree - it was an interesting idea for Civ V to play with the tall vs. wide dichotomy, but as it turned out, tall just doesn't work well with Civ's basic mechanics: if you don't have many cities, you simply don't have very much to do.

    The intent actually appears to be to push them - since you get them now or they're gone. I think the system has potential but it's pretty horribly balanced. It's bewildering that Great Admirals made it into Civ VI given how limited and unpopular they were in Civ V. All prophets, (most) merchants and cultural GPs do the same thing as one another so there's no incentive to choose between them just to get a Great Work or a luxury with a different name The system works well with engineers and scientists though there are evident balance issues (+1 appeal to a few tiles or a space race boost?) - hopefully they can diversify a bit more with the other types over time. Mary Anning is perhaps the most interesting example of the system's potential for linking GPs to strategic choices - I had one game where I played for cultural dominance and she was a must-have I actively fought for, and another where I ignored archaeology and passed her (the space race GPs are in a similar position, but are far too strong if you are going for science victory especially as any AIs not doing so won't compete for them).

    In this Civ VI is actually reverting to type - this is the basic game progression of all Civ games pre-Civ V, which didn't really favour 'tall' as an option (save in the specific case of chasing cultural victory). Unfortunately it's not evident that Civ VI has any of the depth to make that approach interesting - it really seems to just want to address common complaints with Civ V levelled by players of the older games without really understanding why those worked well.
     
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  14. Tatran

    Tatran Deity

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    Guess who was responsible for derailing it?

    Back to civ 6. Bye for now or bye forever?
    The more I think about it, the more I'm convinced Firaxis can't make a decent AI for this game.
     
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  15. ThERat

    ThERat Deity

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    Tatran, I think with 1upt Firaxis has made a huge mistake as it exposed their inability to make a decent AI for the game they designed. Commercial success will tell them this is the way to go, but I guess I am done with Firaxis and civilization. If they can't even design a game which would enable the AI to pose at least some level of challenge, we will either have to go back to previous iterations of the game or move on.
     
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  16. Sobornost

    Sobornost Chieftain

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    The game we're having the most fun with at our house right now is AoE 2, a 17 year old game with 17 year old graphics and 17 year old mechanics. But the AI can wipe the floor with us (and does in maybe 1/3 of games - most of the rest are a satisfying struggle to win that keeps you on your toes).

    From what I'm reading Civ 6 sounds like Sims right now. Build cool stuff, do crazy things, throttle a neighbor for the fun of it, nuke Gandhi (lulz). Competitive gameplay... not so much. It's like taking the chessboard since your opponent can't play for the life of him, and creatively stacking the chess pieces as high as you can. I guess that's making lemonade out of a lemon?

    I sincerely hope you guys can make a game that your AI's can play, or make an AI that can play your game.
     
  17. Jabulani

    Jabulani Warlord

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    Of course I agree but they failed in the beta, they failed in vanilla and they kept on failing for three patches.

    Of course civ vi is buried, that is the way devs wanted to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the most beautiful game of history, thx devs and no further DLC will ever move the situation from the desperate one they already gifted us multiple times.
     

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