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Caveman 2 Cosmos (ideas/discussions thread)

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Caveman 2 Cosmos' started by strategyonly, Sep 3, 2010.

  1. JosEPh_II

    JosEPh_II TBS WarLord

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    As of last week my Civics rebalancing had only made it thru most of the Classical Era with some Gov't and Finance categories going a bit further. It was just this past week that I made some adjustments to Gov't Civic in Eras beyond Medieval! And I had only barely touched Any of Pepper2000's Civics in the 5 added Later eras from his mod mod. It take much game play to get a feel for the Civics

    The 1st 2 or 3 Civics in most categories by rule have to be ladderish. To build foundations for the mid to later Civics to come. Especially with the Number of Civics we have factoring as well. Sorry that bothers you. But When to change IS a Big Decision! It is not a trifle.

    I also am striving for interconnectedness between several categories. This too takes time and testing.

    No matter Who balances Civics there will Always Be Dissenters. So the one doing it must have a thick skin. ;) Trivia note, Every Modder that attempted to balance Civics, with the exception of StrategyOnly, eventually gave up and left the forum. Think about that for a moment.

    I am open to suggestions, but don't get upset if I do not implement them right away or at all. But I do consider and try them When I get constructive suggestions. Being down right rude over it though will get you "ignored". Not saying you are or even have ever been Faustmouse. But there have been several others that were/still are. I do not converse with them any more.

    Finally I know I've been slow at this Civics rebalance. But to be fair I have had my work interrupted by major changes Multiple times that made the versions I was going to put up canceled or bad.

    By the way nice to see you posting again. :)
     
  2. Thunderbrd

    Thunderbrd C2C War Dog

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    I would agree with that comment. Also a willingness to try to work with feedback if you can see how you can - but yes, you're GOING to get criticism no matter what, just like I have with the traits, and sometimes you have to just know your plan and reasoning and stick with it unless it's really compelling feedback to demand a change. I try to defend my designs and the rationale and if they can argue me around that rationale still, there may yet be something I'm still needing to see that I might've overlooked. I hear 'em out anyhow. But yeah, this is a tough thing, knowing when to bend and when to hold firm.
     
  3. Maltazard

    Maltazard Chieftain

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    I've wanted to point out one or another thing regarding civics so many times since coming across C2C, but I've refrained both because it's still a work in progress and because I think it's best to trust who's dealing with it rather than add chaos with a barrage of minor suggestions like "make civic X do Y instead of Z".

    Though, one thing that bothers me in general about civics, is the purely "incremental" aspect that a lof of civics have. I think the best example of which is language civics. While I understand the idea of linguistic improvements leading ultimately to higher tech/commerce/cultural outputs, the way that works now, by just granting an immediate flat bonus, removes any strategical weight. You might as well just give the flat tech/commerce/culture increase on reaching the corresponding technology and remove the language civic tab entirely (this will also help the issue with AIs not switching to better language tech as soon as it is unlocked). Perhaps there should be a bonus number of trade routes and/or trade routes output bonus, as well as an espionage malus from more advanced language civics (i.e. it's harder to keep secrets when using an universal language). So you might want to stick to a more primitive language to gain a strategic advantage - while losing on commerce and, of course, the diplomatic relation bonus which is a nice touch already in place.

    Previously you were discussing the possibility of using inflation to curb excess gold in late game, and there are several civics that give a flat inflation rate - perhaps this is worth keeping in mind to avoid conflicts or expand the strategic value of economic civics by giving a more direct control over inflation with some civics.

    Also I think that once the game enters space and time travel, those civics should be clearly superior to anything before them - but until then there should be some merit and some usability to older civics, at least in some categories.
    Lastly... I don't like the massive amounts of distance and number of cities maintenance modifiers that most civics carry. It feels like a very artificial way of limiting expansion. I understand why it's there, though some civics carrying a massive penalty in this regard are unjustly penalized when compared to their alternatives. The abstract aspect of governance and the strategic value of some civics is lost to an artificial limiter that is there only to contain expansion for balance reasons. Perhaps there could be other ways to limit player expansion. Freeing civics from this balancing task might also allow to flourish the strategic aspect they have even more.
     
  4. JosEPh_II

    JosEPh_II TBS WarLord

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    @Maltazard , Thank you for the input.

    Inflation was all but removed from the Mod awhile back. Too many complaints about it increasing to the point of no return. So another modder shackled it to combat that issue.

    And almost all early Civics will have to have an incremental aspect. Just the nature of history and man's "development".

    When I 1st started on Civics the Dist and Numcity maint modifiers were even higher on most early Civics and maintained even on mid era Civics. When I initially changed the early ones I had minor and major objections from many, even from the Modding Team.

    The late eras are/were pepper2000's take on the Old Civic system that The Author of C2C, and back then, the lead building designer HydromancerX wanted. And their collective system was very incremental, With the steps being done by a 5% increment system, Or a 10% increment. pepper2000 used this system because he would take an early Civic and extrapolate where in the increment range his New Era Civics should correspondingly be for his late Era Modmod. The same Modmod that was incorporated to expand the end game eras for this Mod. That is why many of his Civics had up to 50% increases which where OP.

    We have also went thru Massive coding changes wee the underlying Tags have been changed as well by New Mathematical formulas or New Tag hierarchies (what is base tag and then which tags build in order of importance to the New System heirarchy).

    I have also started to use Tags that were set aside long long ago that have been in the Mod since it's inception, ie like iHomeArea and iOtherArea both maint modifiers that complement the Dist and NumCity Maint modifiers.

    Truth be told though IF I had my way all Civic Categories would have a reduced number of Civics in each one. I also personally think we have Too many Categories. BUT...reducing the Civics is Not a part of the Mod's overall design. So I Do Not go there.

    When I took over it was to clean up the errors made by the main man when he became ill. It evolved from there. On top of that the mod during that time has went thru some very serious coding and design changes. Each one significantly altering the Civic work being done. In several instances were the interworking of the individual Civics with other Categories had to be rethought out. Hence the almost 3 years to get where it is today. Evolution of the Civics is a slow process and radical changes usually meet radical responses, sometimes even from Team members.

    Again I do appreciate the feed back and I keep such feedback to see if and how it may be implemented into the Civic structure. If a certain aspect is repeated by several posters (basic same idea) then more weight is given to that idea.
     
  5. Maltazard

    Maltazard Chieftain

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    Thank you for explaining how many things have come to be as they are now. There is so much history behind C2C's development. Over a decade of development (that's a lot!), multiple directors, and the changes coming from new code implementations add up even more complexity. I've seen how you've had to work around these changes when they happen, and they happen quite often with the high pace of development you guys have had since v38 or so. With all that, you can't theory-craft an abstract civic table on paper based on political science alone and impress that directly onto the game, like one might be tempted to, it has to be an organic hands on approach that also handles game balance and other more gamey things.

    These were some thoughts that I've had for a long time, some more like general ideas regarding C2C (like regarding language evolution being implemented through a civic), than concrete feedback points for the current civics, really. But then, as a player, ultimately I'll just do that: play with what's on the (civic) table, and have lots of fun. Keep it up though, because we're still all here playing years on, which speaks louder than any criticism :lol:
     
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  6. lobosan

    lobosan Warlord

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    Hear! Hear!
     
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  7. Thunderbrd

    Thunderbrd C2C War Dog

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    It IS a way of limiting expansion but I think it's the right way to do it. From Civ I onward, improved forms of government were necessary for larger nations because figuring out how to manage an empire is a much more difficult challenge than managing a tribe or village and comes with a ton of difficulties in keeping everything organized and unified, culturally and economically and politically so that it doesn't shatter. Added costs in doing so are a big part of this and only more advanced forms of government can minimize those costs. So yes, a way of limiting expansion, but a fairly RL reflection of it aside from the happiness limitations for num cities and rev's way of addressing it. As a core first method of making expansion difficult, this has always been CivIV's primary approach to combating infinite expansion game play as the only valid strategy. And it was the first in the Civ line of games to actually find a solution this way - all before it failed and led to a purely hyperexpansion strategy being valid.
     
  8. Blazenclaw

    Blazenclaw eccentric eclectic

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    And just to add to this, the lesson seems to have been forgotten; Civs 5 and 6 both strongly reward hyperexpansion as well; not as much as civ3 and before, but still >.>
     
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  9. Faustmouse

    Faustmouse Deity

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    Yes, and I can see that this is a major problem. People tend to make buildings, civs, etc much stronger, if they personally feel that this is "right". It's a big challange to be objective and see the positive aspects of things that you consider "wrong"

    Thank you so much! The Map stuff and the domestic advisor are totally awesome! :)
    I strongly disagree with the building part. This is not automation, this is just another filter. You can filter buildings that are not constructable, so why can't I generate a costum filter for buildings that I normally don't want to build in most cities, to remove the clutter?

    Don't take my inputs as commands, like "change this NOW!", they are just observations and recommendations / food for thoughts.
    Factories, for example, could get a few extra hammers (like 3-5) and I think that would make me want to build them. This alone will skyrocket Pollution.
    The Energy Property would be another, quite interesting concept, if it will be implemented at one point.

    Don't worry, I just give you some feedback. I know this is a hard topic... When to change is a strategic layer for sure, but what civic to pick is a whole other layer, that should not be ignored. One sidenote, as I've seen you were talking about anarchy times, I think right now they are too long to justify changing civics just in preperation for a war. I pretty much only change them when I have a golden age. And, as Maltazard mentioned it, I don't think that maintenance for cities is a huge restricting factor. The hunhappieness with the option is often a bigger factor. I remember that during my world map game, I had situations were both the maintenance and the happyieness were the limiting factor, so I think they are about as spot-on as crime is for the first 4-5 Eras :)
     
  10. VCrakeV

    VCrakeV Prince

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    Has anyone else noticed the AI reaching Sedentary Lifestyle really early? My Immortal games before were fine; they usually hit Ancient era by 12000BC at the earliest, but now its 20000BC-40000BC. I tried upscale research, but then we were all behind the calendar. Should/could we just abandon the calendar? It does seem rather odd to use a calendar specific to our history of civilization in a game rife with variations from history.
     
  11. Toffer90

    Toffer90 C2C Modder

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    I've long wanted to remove the calendar altogether as it is mostly a disturbance both to the player and to the modders trying in futility to make it less disturbing.
     
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  12. JosEPh_II

    JosEPh_II TBS WarLord

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    It's because the calendar was made too "generic". And the AI on upper levels higher than Prince will almost always beat you to Sed Life and Ancient era. The Mod has evolved some since v38.

    Adjusting the Calendar is not that hard. Especially if based off of # of Turns ratio to Number of Tech in each Era.

    EDIT: But as Toffer90 is saying don't get hung up on Dates. Wasting your time worrying over it.
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2020
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  13. Yudishtira

    Yudishtira Spiritual/Creative

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    Apart from the fact that at least one player (me) strongly objects to the calendar removal, this is a 'canary' that is useful for detecting balance issues. Your suggestion would hide it rather than being informed by it.

    I agree that the calendar can only be 'calibrated' for one difficulty level (eg. Monarch being C2C's equivalent of Noble). On higher difficulties, faster era progress is to be expected. I also understand and agree with the efforts to make difficulty levels more difficult, and that this will likely cause faster AI teching than 'before' on the 'same' difficulty rank. I still think reports of Sed Life being reached at 40000 should be welcomed, and remedied if it's a regular occurrence below Nightmare diff. 20000BC at Immortal might just be 'the new normal';):dunno:.
     
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  14. Blazenclaw

    Blazenclaw eccentric eclectic

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    Here's a very incomplete list of other things that also directly or indirectly impact the rate at which tech is acquired, besides difficulty level:
    • Resource density of world generator / Luck of draw in resources that player starts with
    • Luck of draw in animal variety that spawns near player start, or player start in general
    • Hide and seek option (more animals earlier)
    • Aggro animals option
    • Animals spawn in territory option
    • Goody huts option
    • Increased tech cost option
    • Increased building cost option
    • Map size (has impacts on civic cost, etc) and type
    • Barbarian world option
    • Neanderthal cities option
    • Raging barbarians option
    • Tech diffusion option
    • Win for Losing option
    • Developing leaders option
    • Start with or without traits option
    • One-tile city option
    • Realistic city expansion option
    Really, almost all options do, these are just a handful off the top of my head that have impacts in prehistoric and potentially drastically so, let alone compounding effects down the tree. Granted one could argue to balance it for an arbitrary set of options (none checked?), but any one of these would then throw that out of whack, not to mention effects that aren't based on options e.g. inherent randomness or mapscript or world size.

    The calendar as is, and correct me if I'm wrong I haven't looked into the code for it closely, is basically a glorified turn timer; any information retrieved from it is not dissimilar from # of turns passed, modified by era of most advanced civ (I think, may be wrong). In that regard it may be helpful yes to see if one era happens to whiz by at 50% the turns of another era, but that's A) not actually easily discernable from the number itself past prehistoric, and B) more a question of snowballing, isn't it? I mean, if an era takes less time than another... so what? Obviously extreme cases could be adjusted say by adjusting tech costs for that and/or future eras, but ultimately it shouldn't really matter so much if it's equivalent for all players. The balance issue would be indicating that a player who reaches this era (that goes by quickly) is likely better rewarded than a player who reaches it later, as there would be a larger tech-value gap between them than in an era that went by slowly - and even then that assumes eras have equal number of techs, which is decidedly not the case.

    One other option regarding the calender is to overhaul it to make it a function of how far, say, the "average competitive team" (? weight by pop percent of world maybe?) is through the tech tree (looking at most expensive tech, not just era gate), with smart bounding conditions imposed at each lifestyle tech. But then, some argue it's not properly giving the weight to a game in which tech is 'slow' and you end up reaching Industrial in 2020, or 'fast' and reaching it in 1600; it'll always be enforced to happen around 1830, which for some I'd imagine is a strong negative.

    Personally I'd be ok with a dynamic gated timer, but.... your mileage may vary. It's far easier to just remove it, than program that and/or constantly update it try and make it reasonable, as pretty much everyone has a different experience playing c2c.

    Just my..... eh, let's call it 3 cents. A bit wordier version of what Toffer said in one sentence :crazyeye:
     
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2020
  15. Yudishtira

    Yudishtira Spiritual/Creative

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    Wordier but no more valid. Default values for options obviously must be assumed for balancing. Options cause balance issues in a dozen or more ways other than this one.
     
  16. Blazenclaw

    Blazenclaw eccentric eclectic

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    If you think there's nothing valid in what I wrote, I rather doubt a calendar "balancing" scheme is possible that will satisfy even your own interests, let alone anyone else's.
     
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2020
  17. Toffer90

    Toffer90 C2C Modder

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    Not at all, turn number does exactly the same job at informing about progression speed.
    Turn number equals date in that regard, the two are always connected 100% without deviation.
    Knowing turn number, gamespeed (total turns), and starting era (turn offset) always allow one to extrapolate the expected percentage progression towards reaching the end game.
    Knowing the date however doesn't do that job without first converting it to the turn number it actually represent.
     
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2020
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  18. strategyonly

    strategyonly C2C Supreme Commander

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    did u'll place a time limit on Conquest's or did i check a wrong box?? upper right corner. .
     

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  19. Toffer90

    Toffer90 C2C Modder

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    Looks like time victory is active in your game. I know the Mastery victory also activates the time victory, don't think conquest does it though.
     
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  20. strategyonly

    strategyonly C2C Supreme Commander

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    Looked around , anyplace i can turn that off??
     

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