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CIV VII: 1UPT, Stack of Doom or Carpet of Doom. What's your prefs?

Which do you prefer seeing in Civ VII?

  • 1UPT and Carpet of Doom

    Votes: 35 29.9%
  • Stack of Doom

    Votes: 29 24.8%
  • None of the above - please describe

    Votes: 14 12.0%
  • 1UPT but back to Squared tiles and Isometric view

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Stack of Doom but Exagonal tiles and more modern 3D

    Votes: 11 9.4%
  • Halfway between - please describe

    Votes: 28 23.9%

  • Total voters
I really like 1UPT compared to old school doomstacks. But I would like to see changes to make 1UPT less restricting.
Third idea: hexagons within hexagons

A single hexagon can fit seven small hexagons inside it

View attachment 693453
I have thought about something similar, but with six triangles instead of seven hexes inside each hexagon.

Also a variant of this which is the "unlimited units, 6 attacks, 1 heal per tile (hexagon)". Here you could fill any number of units into any hex for purpose of organizing and moving your army. Each turn you can make up to six attacks from a tile, requiring up to six units in that tile. But here's the catch: each attack must be in a different direction. So for example, you can make an attack from tile A to tile B, and an attack from tile A to tile C, but not two attacks from tile A to tile B. If you want to make multiple attacks on tile B you have to spread out your units so that they surround tile B. This puts a limit on force concentration. Limiting the number of heals per tile also favors players who spread out their units. Number of heals could perhaps be upgradable over the course of the game.

The "issue" with the latter system is that it can only work well if the developers can make a good UI to go along with it.
I'm all for One Unit Per Tile (1UPT), but I also think that the Armies and Armadas mechanic should be improved greatly.

Merging multiple units *of the same type* should result in the merged unit being stronger than the sum of its parts, not weaker.
The reason to leave such units unstacked should be strategic positioning for sieges and such.

I'd also allow unit merging to come online earlier and allow for significantly more stacking in later Eras.

The below list explains how many units *of the same type* could be merged, in what Era the ability to merge them comes online, and what the resulting Stack is called:

1 Unit = Ancient = Squad
2 Units = Classical = Platoon
3 Units = Medieval = Troop
4 Units = Renaissance = Battalion
5 Units = Industrial = Brigade
6 Units = Modern = Division
7 Units = Atomic = Corps
IMO, I think the answer is basically "one unit type per tile". You get one melee unit, one cavalry unit, one siege unit, and one ranged unit per tile (plus one civilian unit, one religious unit, etc...). Obviously can be debate about which classes combine or not - range+siege together or not? Heavy+Light Cavalry? Melee+Anti-Cav? It will take some battle logic - do you attack the entire stack at once, or just one v one. But I think something like that would solve a large portion of the sliding tile puzzle, since each type of unit shouldn't have too many copies of them in the area.
But, and not to repeat myself ... but why? What would it solve to let us stack one of each unit type? How will that in any way add depth of choice to the game? :confused: All I see is it reducing the game to mindlessly producing these identical jack-of-all-trades-ministacks.
But, and not to repeat myself ... but why? What would it solve to let us stack one of each unit type? How will that in any way add depth of choice to the game? :confused: All I see is it reducing the game to mindlessly producing these identical jack-of-all-trades-ministacks.

It would solve part of the sliding piece puzzle, the "my pikeman is in the way so I can't move my catapult past them". I mean, not fully, because one catapult might be in the way of another, but I think for a large number of people, that's really the biggest annoyance of the carpet of doom.

But yeah, without any other changes at all, it would certainly lead to a potentially boring alternate strategy. You maybe end up with a "carpet of mini stacks of doom". Although in my suggestion you do still have some choices - do you want a horseman or a knight? swordsman or pikeman?

You'd need other parts of the system to shift to balance it out. Costs and support maintenance can change, or maybe you add in a form of supply lines, or even a case where a mini stack is worse than the sum of its parts. ie. maybe units get -5 "other unit on tile" combat penalty, so that you have a counter to protect your unit but there might be cases where you'd rather spread out.

But for me, in VI, I found that I tend to not have that much combined arms. It tended to a system where you have enough units surrounding your siege to keep them alive, but I would rarely, for example, build pikemen unless if I just didn't have resources for alternate units. Or it was easy to skip building mounted units because I could build siege/range/melee enough to fill the tiles so the advantage of mounted units didn't matter enough. If you design a system where it encourages you into a more balanced setup, that can change how you approach things. Like if your stacks are only 3/4 of the size of your neighbour because you lack horses and can't include mounted units in your stacks, suddenly that lack of resources has a potentially very serious consequence.
But, and not to repeat myself ... but why? What would it solve to let us stack one of each unit type? How will that in any way add depth of choice to the game? :confused: All I see is it reducing the game to mindlessly producing these identical jack-of-all-trades-ministacks.
Right, the meta would be to produce different unit types in a 1:1:1 ratio, anything else and you reduce your ability to concentrate force.
How about giving us a Civ 7 where we can choose either stack of doom or carpet of doom at the start of each game?
That would be two entirely different games. Supporting both would be a QA nightmare and probably end in both being badly implemented.
Hybrid, with some caveats:

"Form column" ability = units can stack, have greater movement points but less strength. (Say, 50% of their combined average, and zero modifiers). Better for just moving an army where you need it.

"Form line" = one unit per tile, with each having its maximum strength, maximum modifiers, yet also the least movement points. Better for combat. Basically as it is now in Civ 5&6.
Neither SOD nor 1UPT.

Stack of dooms were a monstrosity, 1UPT is a mess. One allows for concentration of offense (or defense) at completely ludicrous level that can bring the game to a grindy halt. The other absurdly limits movement by requiring constant maneuvering to keep your screens and protected units in the right position relative to each other, not to mention making the map feel incredibly small, and leaving poorly designed armies the only alternative.

What I favor is LUPT: limited units per tile. Where the limit is always high enough to allow a ranged/siege unit and a screen (escorting unit) to move together, in the same tile, with other units possibly being added as the game progress and technologies are unlocked. This could take the form of an expanded army system where the units in an army all move together, always, but act separately in combat, or it could just keep the units independent but allow limited stacking of units of different types in the same tile. Later technologies could also expand what units (and how many units) can be paired.

This would vastly reduce the number of tiles your army needs, and greatly facilitate movement, while avoiding massive armies still.
More than just the size of the stack, model command and control, logistics and supply with technologies and investments. Leaders etc. Now one thing that military units can do is fight a holding action which might be less appropriate for some units but it is part of both tactical and strategic operations. Recon in force. Hold at all costs.

Reactive defense certainly ought to appear. With or without simultaneous movement, units that have expended movement to get in position could be used to contest the movement into adjacent zones which could disrupt operations. Warfare is seldom a shooting contest but rather a dance of death with combatants who seize the initiative and act decisively reaping many rewards. We are not always going to have a new civilization iteration coming, let's just once not boil it down to simple for the sake of avoiding the possibility of designing a great game.

Not one unit per tile but many concepts per tile. Give us the beef.
Maybe the game should not force 1upt or stacks? Instead the game should have pros and cons to each and let the player choose if they want to stack units or not depending on the situation. After all, civ is a strategy game so why not give the player strategic choices to stack or unstack?

So here is what I propose:
- cities would have a maximum unit support limit based on population. When you reach the limit, the city could not build anymore units. This would prevent unit spam. The limit could be raised by growing pop and with techs or civics.
- allow up to 5 units to occupy the same tile at the end of the turn to prevent carpet of doom and "sliding tile puzzle" problem.
- allow the player to attach up to 5 units in the same tile to move together to make moving units easier and prevent stacks of doom.
- advantage of single unit: would be able to retreat from losing battle, would be invisible in forest and jungle tiles.
- advantage of stack: would get "combined arms" bonus (increased attack and defense strength). And each unit in stack would get to attack so you would get multiple attacks from same tile.
- disadvantage of stack: higher maintenance cost based on number of units in stack, move at speed of slowest unit, would suffer collateral damage from ranged attacks.
- Allow units to build trenches to gain defensive bonus.

I feel like these mechanics would give the player lots of interesting strategies. Single units would be great at guerilla warfare since they could hide in forests and jungles, hit and then retreat. Single units would give you more mobility and control over more territory. And you could spread single units out and build trenches for a solid defensive frontline like in WW1. But stacks would be great for when you want that bigger punch to pierce through the enemy lines or take a city. Stacks would also be a great way to move a larger military force long distance as you could move 5 units at a time along roads or rails. But you probably would not want all stacks all the time as they could be damaged a lot by collateral damage and stacks could not control a lot of territory. I feel like players would have interesting choices of when and where to spread units out or consolidate some units into a stack.
It could be modeled after real world military divisions.

So the base unit could be a company. Then you could combine them into battalions, brigades, groups and so on. Each era or civilization might have its own names for these units though.

Then the thing is, that maintaining large groups might just be too expensive for early empires but there wouldn’t be any programmed hard cap.
I recently picked up Endless Legend for free with a Steam giveaway. It had an interesting compromise. It allowed units to be stacked together, but this was limited by technology. You start out being able to stack four units (and a hero) into an army, so if you want to escort a settler, for example, stick it in one of those slots. As you age up, you get options to raise the cap to 6 and 8 as new combat roles are introduced. I like this solution because it preserves the strategic depth of making an army from the various unit types available and provides ease of navigating around the hex board with 1UPT rules, but it also acknowledges that as you get stronger, you want to be able to field stronger, more complex armies. One army isn't going to take a city, for example. You're going to need some additional units. That may mean another full army with hero. It may mean a reserve army that trails behind and refills your main one as units are lost. EL is a bit different in its combat. You do full battles with unit level control where you do control things with strict 1UPT just during the battle, so you don't lose that strategic depth either. I rather like this solution and think it's a definite improvement on how Civ 5 and 6 handled it.

The catch of course with this is that you have to take the time to play out the battle, move by move. Civ has the advantage of resolving the whole thing in one click, which is much better, especially if you're playing multiplayer with turn time limits. EL does have an auto-resolve feature which does simplify things, but most players are encouraged to avoid it because it often renders significantly worse outcomes than playing it out with proper strategy.
I had an idea of allowing doom stacks, but limiting them.

* Players can doom stack, but only one additional stack per unit per era (1 unit in Ancient, 2 during Classical, 3 during medieval, etc).
*Tied to Civics like corps and armies are in VI.
This is more or less what I would like to see. It reflects the concept of logistics. A military's ability to support a given size army depends on certain technological advancements. You could take this a step further and say that more than the stack limit is possible, but going over what your advancement level can support will cause attrition- your units in that hex will take a small amount of damage each turn that they spend stacked above the current limit. This makes historical sense and I think it would fix the issue of having units feel cluttered like they do in 1UPT and also fix the problem of having death stacks from the earlier civ games.

You could take it even further and have different terrains have modifiers that slightly increase or decrease this limit. Maybe troops moving through the desert can't be supported as well as they can in grassland due to lack of food and water, for example. Although I think that might be going a step too nuanced for what they typically want to do with the Civ genre.
we have not yet touched on great generals. how about tying the ability to add units to a stack to the great general. the later the era the general is the more units can be added, or have the great general be consumed to make a famous army which can add units?
we have not yet touched on great generals. how about tying the ability to add units to a stack to the great general. the later the era the general is the more units can be added, or have the great general be consumed to make a famous army which can add units?

Definitely. I think this would be great.
The 1UPT system is much easier to fix without implementing overly complicated rules for combat. All you would have to do is increase the cost and upkeep of a unit while also buffing the unit accordingly. The upkeep should also include food so it forces the player to make a strategic choice between growing your cities population and having a large army.
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