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culture expands borders on alien world?

Discussion in 'CivBE - General Discussions' started by Sal, Sep 2, 2014.

  1. Sal

    Sal Warlord

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    Culture expanding borders in Civ 5 made sense, as your cultural influence spread to the inhabitants of the surrounding countryside and drew more land in.

    In BE though what does tile aquisition through culture mean? You are not presumably converting local aliens to your civ, so why do you need a thriving arts scene to grab that farming resource just outside your border?

    Wouldn't simply purchasing tiles with energy make more sense?
     
  2. KayAU

    KayAU King

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    I have been thinking about this lately as well, and it worries me a bit. I really want BE to be good, but things like this makes me fear that what we are getting might be closer in quality to Civ4: Colonization. While Civ4 was great, and Colonization was great, the combination was a bit of a disappointment. And as seems to be the case with BE, they did that thing where they just imported game mechanics from Civilization which didn't quite fit in.

    Example: In Civilization you can convert production to culture once you reach a certain level of development. This kind of makes sense, as I can imagine production redirected to the entertainment industry, movie theatres, and so on. However, in Colonization, the concept of production is far more specific. That is why it seemed very odd to me that you could convert production to, for example, exploration points. The idea of having different categories of founding fathers was a good one, in my opinion, but being able to get any type of points just by having a lot of carpenters kind of ruined it.

    I am cautiously optimistic with regards to BE, but when I read interviews with the developers, it does look more like "Civ 5 in space" than a spiritual successor to SMAC. And while I really like both "Civ" 5 and "space", there is still a chance they will not put them together in a way I like.

    Kay
     
  3. Skorpios

    Skorpios Chieftain

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    For me, in CivBE culture represents the strength of your colonists' spirit. When you use energy you are buying homesteads and other infrastructure so that your colonists move out into the world. With a strong culture they are inspired to do this off their own bat. The Prosperity virtue that gives a discount for border expansion is called Pioneer Spirit as an example of this.
     
  4. CaptainPatch

    CaptainPatch Lifelong gamer

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    In my opinion, after Civ 4 and all it's expansion, Civ 5 seemed rather "flat", ho-hum. Even adding Gods & Kings didn't spice it enough. It wasn't until Brave New World that it really felt like a game of substance. [Then I added mods like crazy and then it was like "Wow!"]

    From what I've seen from Firaxis, they like to take shortcuts by carrying over mechanics from a predecessor, thinking it will work adequately with all of the new elements being added. Which usually does NOT work smoothly. (Like the Civ 4 and Colonization merger.) After a flood of complaints, they try to cobble together an expansion -- which doesn't quite smooth over the rough spots. Then they get serious and do some major overhauls and re-integrations and out comes that second expansion. And finally, we get the game that we should have gotten in the first place.

    I hope that won't be the case here, but I will nonetheless hope for the best.
     
  5. Krajzen

    Krajzen Deity

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    Kinda too abstract and far - fetched for me... I mean, you could as well say that the higher culture is, the slower is borders expansion because cultured and civilized people wanna sit in city with all this culture instead of colonizing new harsh environments :p

    By the way, when I think about it now, this could be fascinating mechanic... New outposts grow quickly, old slower without additional infrastructure... I like it. Exactly opposite to what we have seen in Civ5 :D
     
  6. Skorpios

    Skorpios Chieftain

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    I'm not sure what you mean by 'too abstract and far-fetched'. All of the Civilization games revolve around the simulation and abstraction of social, political and economical forces that drive the expansion of... well... civilization.

    As exploring and exploiting this new world is the whole point of the Seeding expeditions (and the game of course) why is defining culture as something like 'pioneer spirit' so far-fetched?

    As you said yourself, as cities and cultures become more civilized border expansion does slow in as far as the 'cost' (either culture or energy) for gaining influence over tiles increases the farther they are from the city. Gaining influence over the closest tiles to a new outpost is relatively cheap and fast.
     
  7. Catalytic

    Catalytic Chieftain

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    I think my main issue with it is that it's a clear copy of traditional Civ 5 mechanics. I would like to see them innovate, rather than try to manhandle an old idea to fit a new game. Some cultures are adventuresome and thrill-seeking. Others are not. Both Chinese and Japanese have a strong isolationist theme in their history. The US had a variation on that isolation up until WWI when it came to interacting with Europe. √Člodie, in the current canon refers to culture in a much more traditional, art-focused way. While she's busy devoting her attention away from exploration to her artistic pursuits, should she really be represented with faster growing borders? It just seems backwards that the inward focused factions would get faster border growth while the outward focused military factions would get slower border growth solely because of an odd mechanic.

    I've always thought land/territory should be land held by population and by military presence. When you don't have those, or you've got two groups with both in the same area, territorial borders on maps are much more... fluid. For example, see Kashmir, Eastern Ukraine right now, or the so-called Islamic State which has established both population and military presence within a sovereign state's borders - only the two sovereign states being robbed of their land are incapable of holding the land with military of their own.

    Maybe this is an issue where gameplay trumps realism though...
     
  8. GenEngineer

    GenEngineer Prince

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    If it ain't broke, don't fix it. Also, see the general backlash last time they made massive changes (*cough*1 unit per tile*cough*).
     
  9. Lord Shadow

    Lord Shadow General

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    It's Sid's maxim: a sequel is 1/3 new, 1/3 improved and 1/3 the same.

    If you don't want culture to have an impact on borders and remove such effect, say, making expansion dependent on population, then how do you address that new imbalance? Suddenly culture is merely a means to get Virtues, while food becomes over-important because it now controls not only population growth, but also border expansion. It's not so easy to tweak such fundamental mechanics.
     
  10. NASAROG

    NASAROG Prince

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    Then they should call it something else.
     
  11. KrikkitTwo

    KrikkitTwo Immortal

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    Its not easy but they could have...

    Tile acquisition could have been based on improvements.
    Or you can work any improved tile that is in range and Not in someone else's culture. (culture still expands, but only into/adjacent to worked tiles)

    They made the barriers for working the terrain too low, ie being able to build farms out in the open, instead of domes as the starting necessity.
    The fact that you can collect food from the native life means they really minimized the differences between this and another civ game.

    Essentially they kept a lot of the basic economy the same.. that could have made a lot more work, but it could have been a lot more interesting.
     
  12. Sal

    Sal Warlord

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    I get what people are saying about the 1/3 1/3 1/3 rule and how you cannot just change it a bit without overturning the game - I was actually just wondering if culture should be in the 1/3 that got cut out and replaced with something else.

    No doubt culture will change in the far future, but I am not sure it will drive linear progress for the better like it did (or could be seen to have done) through ancient and modern history.

    Why would having a nicely displayed old Earth relic in your capital result in getting a bonus to your science output like gaining science from defeated aliens? Why would it help your borders expand regardless of whether you can protect them?

    We can find reasons of course but they will all be workarounds, not nice fits.

    I think they could have safely ditched culture in favour of a new mechanic. Virtues could be earned through achievements that are relevant to the paths, like military victories for might, or new buildings for climbing industry.
     
  13. proftc

    proftc Chieftain

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    This could be a simple solution...
    We went from Gold to Energy
    Maybe Culture becomes... Influence, or Control, or... I don't what else.

    There's nothing wrong with the core mechanic, we are completely rebuilding mankind, so yes, we'd have to remake the 'culture'.
    It is a bit difficult to map that to border growth in the 'survivalist' style early game,
    but as you really get going, it still makes sense that cultural pressure could expand
    the zone of influence.
     
  14. NASAROG

    NASAROG Prince

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    The question is, at least for me, does heavy cultural pressure equate to city flipping?
     
  15. mabalogna

    mabalogna Warlord

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    First of all, cultural borders have been apart of Civ games since Civ 3 and were also apart of SMAC.

    Cultural borders dictate the territory that your faction considers to be under their hegemony and authority, as well as the dominant accepted culture of the populous who resides within that territory. In order for another faction to claim that territory, they would have to declare war, and assimilate the local inhabitants to a new hegemony.

    Culture is a VERY general term used to describe the intangible accepted normative practices of a society as a whole. You cannot 'produce' culture as a commodity, but commodities can sometimes represent a culture (e.g. consumer culture), or be a product of a the dominant culture (e.g. Art, Music, Poetry, etc.).

    Being "cultured" basically just refers to someone who is educated; but they are educated within the accepted culture that they live in because what they study is related to what is accepted within their culture. For instance, in North America a student is going to be educated in a Euro-centric curriculum, while a Chinese student will be educated in a completely different curriculum; in both cases either students would be considered 'cultured' or 'enlightened' because they are educated within what is accepted in their culture.

    Within the constraints of a rather abstract game like Civilization I see no problem with the simple ways that culture is being approached.
     
  16. s0nny80y

    s0nny80y Emperor

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    I remember this question asked a while ago and Firaxis had confirmed it.
     
  17. NASAROG

    NASAROG Prince

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    Ohhhhh, nice. I still wouldn't call it culture. Call it influence or something. Culture is so old earth....
     
  18. GenEngineer

    GenEngineer Prince

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    In that case, it would not be the virtue system; it would be something else entirely. Part of the point behind the virtues is that you can specialize your society using the same base resource. On the same train of thought, we could say they could get rid of production as a mechanic entirely; why should having a mine make it faster to produce a soldier? It should be based on the how 'warlike' your society is and the size of your population to determine how long it takes to make a soldier.

    But that's ugly, isn't it? The virtue system allows them to lump paths that follow a similar purpose together, and allows them to key more stuff off of it (Franco-Iberia's unique ability, for example, would be an ugly mess if the virtues were all split up, as would the synergy bonuses). As for keying them all of of culture, they could come up with some separate metric to use, but if culture fits even remotely, why not use it? For both ease of developer, and instant recognition of consumers, its easiest to not change it.
     
  19. KrikkitTwo

    KrikkitTwo Immortal

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    Spies can flip cities.
    They never said culture flips cities or even helps them flip
     
  20. Sal

    Sal Warlord

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    It was just a suggestion really to show how the culture stat could be abolished. I don't mind a good mechanic gameplay wise but it is like they have not thought about it and just ported it straight across. It just doesn't make any sense or seem to mean anything tangible. I understand gameplay has priority, but I want it to feel like it has some meaning other than collecting numbers
     

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