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[Development Thread]WW1 Mod: Blood and Iron

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Creation & Customization' started by snafusmith, Jan 13, 2008.

  1. snafusmith

    snafusmith Unit Maker

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    Blood and Iron is a full modification to BTS 3.19 focusing on World War I.

    The initial version of the mod will focus on WW1 as it unfolded in Europe. The main scenario will include all of Europe - focusing on the fight Germany had to deal with against Britain, France, and Russia. As the mod progresses, additional scenarios will be released focusing on each front, including but not limited to, the Western front, Eastern front, the Balkans, and the Middle-East.

    Arms-Trading:
    In order to make things interesting, Blood and Iron will try to focus more on diplomacy and events than just pure combat. Only the major players (Britain, France, Germany, Austria-Hungary, Russia, Italy, and the United States) will be able to build every unit. The minor nations (Belgium, Netherlands, Serbia, Bulgaria, Ottoman Empire, etc) will only be able to build what they can buy from the others.

    A new resource, 'Designs' will be available to the major players, and enables anyone who has them to build the unit. For example, in order to build a Nieuport fighter, you need to have the 'French Designs' resource.

    Naval Combat:
    Control of the seas is important in Blood and Iron. Resources at home will not always be available, and if your ally is across the seas, you need to maintain that connection.

    Naval mines will be a big part of how you control your trade routes. They'll be critical to keeping enemy ships away from your harbors and trade routes, as well as denying important passages to your enemies. You'll also have to protect your fleets from these invisible floating death traps. Don't go charging blindly across the seas, you might be in more trouble than you can handle.

    Progress:
    So far so good. The basics for the mod are in place, and it's mostly a matter of filling in the blanks.

    Units:
    XML: 80%
    Artwork: 80% (80% minimum required for release)
    Tech Tree: 95%

    Civs/Leaders: 75%
    Civics: 50%
    SDK: 100%



    The mod is expected to be released sometime in mid-April 2009. The initial version will include new units, SDK changes, civics upgrades, new religions, and a Europe 1914 scenario.


    -Smitty
     
  2. snafusmith

    snafusmith Unit Maker

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    Some new units that will be present in Blood and Iron:

    Railroad Gun:

    Railroad guns have a devastating effect when bombarding units and can shoot very long distances. Their major drawbacks are their cost and restricted movement.

    Big Bertha:


    Instrumental in breaking through heavily fortified portions of Belgium, the 42cm M-Gerat howitzer is a very effective heavy artillery piece available to the German Empire.

    Rolls-Royce Armored Car

    Armored cars are very useful on developed land and can strike at great distances. However, they cannot cross trenches or areas without roads or railroads.

    Torpedo Boat

    Torpedo boats are very effective coastal defense vessels. Fleets hoping to near an enemies coastline should bring plenty of destroyers.
     
  3. snafusmith

    snafusmith Unit Maker

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    Land:
    -Infantry
    -Heavy Machinegun (w/ Repeating Mechanisms): Defensive bonus
    -Storm Trooper (w/ Infiltration Tactics): Bonus vs. trenches
    -Cavalry
    -Armored Car (w/ Mechanized Warfare)
    -Tank (w/ Tracked Vehicles)
    -Light Tank (w/ Mobile Warfare)
    -Field Gun (w/ Quick Firing Artillery)
    -Heavy Artillery (w/ Field Fortifications)
    -Rail Gun (w/ Artillery Spotting)
    -Spotting Balloon

    Air:
    -Airship
    -Early Recon (i.e., Bleriot XI, Rumpler Taube)
    -Late Recon (i.e., RAF R.E.8)
    -Early Fighter (i.e. Fokker E3)
    -Mid Fighter (i.e. Nieuport 17, Albatros D.3)
    -Late Fighter (Fokker DVII, Sopwith Camel)
    -Special Fighter (Fokker Dr1, RAF S.E.5)
    -Light Bomber (Airco DH.4, AEG G.IV, Caproni Ca.3)
    -Heavy Bomber (Handley Page Type O, Gotha G.IV, Caudron G.4, Ilya Muromets)
    -Seaplane (Short Type 184, Lohner L)

    Sea:
    -Transport
    -Minesweeper
    -Torpedo Boat
    -Destroyer
    -Armored Cruiser
    -Battle Cruiser
    -Pre-Dreadnought
    -Dreadnought
    -Dreadnoght Battleship
    -Seaplane Tender
    -Aircraft Carrier

    Please keep in mind that the goal of the mod is not to have every type of unit ever made in the mod - but to have just enough to do a good job of representing the different technologies that emerged over the course of the war. Units included are also there because they add something substantial to the gameplay.

    Also, units like the 'Storm Trooper' aren't just an infantry model, but a composite of several different units in a formation - in this case, storm stroopers include light (portable) machinegunners, flamethrowers, grenadiers, standard infantrymen, etc.

    The difference between pre-war units, and mid-later units will not be done through new classes (except where appropriate). In the case of infantry, by changing the era limits, infantrymen change uniforms depending on how far advanced you are. If you haven't researched Trench Warfare, you're men won't wear helmets. To make up for the improvement in safety, a promotion is given to them. In general, I think this keeps things a little cleaner.
     
  4. primordial stew

    primordial stew Emperor

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    How are you going to handle the merchant marine?

    I've never seen anything in civ4 that modeled this at all. Maybe it's a SDK task to add something like "merchant intercept" and "merchant escort" sliders. "merchant intercept" represents raiders and submarines. The more you commit, the fewer resources your target gets, and you get some small resource gain from the ships captured. And the higher % the Germans give yields a higher chance the Americans will enter the war :)
     
  5. seZereth

    seZereth FfH´s art monk(ey)

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    awesome smitty :)

    while visiting the war museum in london, i thought about creating a WW1 mod too ;)
    If you need some cool Infantry stuff, just send me a pm, I´d be happy to create some cool models for you in between (cant do animations though...).
    Furthermore I really hope to see the regiments and formations implemented, as it was a time of massive field battles ;)

    good luck.
     
  6. Dale

    Dale Deity

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    Awesome! Good to see! :)
     
  7. woodelf

    woodelf Bard

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    This looks to be incredible smitty. Your WIP shots are breathtaking.
     
  8. RPG

    RPG King

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    Arms trading, blueprints, naval mines! This sounds challenging! I look forward to it.

    How are trenches going to be represented? As an improvement?
     
  9. woodelf

    woodelf Bard

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    How well are units going to heal in this mod? Will there be non-complete kills where the wounded might continue to lose hp instead of healing if they aren't either moved to allied territoy or at least have an open supply route to a friendly base?

    Will the seasons and attrition be included?

    What about quantitative resources and then quantitative commodities built from these resources? Basically just because you have access to iron, oil, ect shouldn't mean you can crank out a new tank in every city. There needs to be a way to control this. Controlling more of each strategic resource should be a bonus. Maybe having 3 iron means building certain units is x% faster? This way it's a positive correlation instead of negative.
     
  10. RPG

    RPG King

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    I think population should be controlled some how since millions were conscripted.

    Maybe a have a city not grow while you create certain units like infantry. (Just like vanilla civ does with workers & settlers.)
     
  11. seZereth

    seZereth FfH´s art monk(ey)

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    I wanted to suggest this, as it brings another dimension to trading also, but you have to check with AI if it can make use of it or not.
    but I am all for it!!!
     
  12. Shqype

    Shqype Shqyptar

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  13. Ball Lightning

    Ball Lightning www.sporedum.net

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  14. snafusmith

    snafusmith Unit Maker

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    Thanks guys, here are some answers:

    Trenches:
    What I'd like to do with trenches is make them a standard improvement, similar to forts (without the naval/air unit capability). They would be buildable by infantry-style units (footsoldiers, in other words, not mechanized units). The only main difference would be that they would get stronger the longer a unit is fortified on them. I know this will take some SDK/python work, but I'd like to see it implemented. Graphically, I'd also like them to join together like roads (visually, there would not be any movement bonus) to form long chains. I've worked out HOW to do the graphics in the XML, just not how to get it to work in game. Right now routes can be joined together, but not improvements. Another SDK/python challenge.

    Seasons:
    This has been tried in different mods before, with different degrees of success. It would be awesome to include in the game, but only if it could be demonstrated that it worked effectively. Part of my goal is to make the game playable - that means turn-times that are livable. More than 1 min between turns on an average computer is out of the question for me. There are a lot of great mods out there that just take to long to play.

    Attrition/Growth:
    City growth will be limited during the mod. Most of the focus will be on building units and advancing your tech, so each scenario will include nearly all of the buildings you require already there. That said, I like the idea of taking some growth away from the city to support certain kinds of units. How that would all ballance out, I don't know. Everything also should be understood by the AI, so this would only be if that could be done.

    Unit Kills:
    One thing I never liked about Civ4 was the way units always die - there's never any retreating. In real battle an entire unit (battalion, regiment, whatever) is rarely completely wiped out. In basic terms I plan to give each unit some retreat bonus. More mobile units will retreat more than footsoldiers, and ultimately retreat would be based on some basic factors:

    Experience: Well trained or experienced troops are better at retreating than fresh troops from your supply depot. If your troop is hopelessly outclassed or out numbered, it'll retreat more orderly and have a better chance of coming through the battle whole.
    Damage: The more damaged our troops are, the more difficult time they will have retreating.

    Here are some more WIP shots to wet your appitite:


    French Charron Armored Car


    German Erhardt Armored Car

    If you have any suggestions, or want to help out, please let me know! There's room for anyone who wants to join in.

    -Smitty
     
  15. asioasioasio

    asioasioasio Fallout Scrubber

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    Amazing - great mod of great war will arrise :)
    This idea with blueprints resources is brilliant :)

    Those units are awsome :)

    Of course i would help as much as i can :)
     
  16. Seven05

    Seven05 Warmonger

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    If you can work that out I'd love to hear about it :)

    Unfortunately the SDK doesn't contain any of the graphical elements of the game engine, just the rules really. Although in theory if you don't mind trenches that are represented by small sections with intermixed sections of barbed wire, craters, etc you should be able to cheat the LSystem into making them look connected. You could also hack into the Great Wall if all else fails. If you impliment them as a 'feature' you can build improvements on top of them like bunkers, supply depots, field hospitals, etc.

    The trick here is to not try to change the entire map at once. You can also 'que' up several terrain changes before updating it which helps with performance. I guess this would depends on the length of time a turn will represent, if it's a month you're probably out of luck but if a turn represents a week you should be able to spread out the changes over time.

    I'm quite pre-occupied with my own mod but I can certainly offer some assisstance with the SDK, it's the least I could do in exchange for all of the units you've uploaded for me to use in my mod :)
     
  17. Dale

    Dale Deity

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    Same for me. I'm doing my mods, but if you need SDK help let me know. My thanks for all the WW2 units in RtW. :)
     
  18. snafusmith

    snafusmith Unit Maker

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    Thanks Dale & Seven05! I'll probably take you up on your offer sooner or later...

    Ok, so if it's not in the SDK, how do I get an improvement to not use the art style of an improvement - what I mean is, how do I make an improvement defined as a feature for it's art files? The walls from the Afterworld mod/scenario are similar to what I'm looking for - they're a feature in that mod, and they connect to eachother automatically. I can graphically make the trenches, but if I use similar XML then the trenches would show up as a feature, not an improvement.

    Maybe I just don't know enough about XML ... after all, I'm just a trumped up unit maker :D
     
  19. Seven05

    Seven05 Warmonger

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    There is really no difference between features and improvements aside from the obvious (but that can be changed in the SDK). They are, more or less, just different layers of objects to apply to the world. The advantage of features, in this case, is that you have XML values in both the units and promotions to control who benefits from attacking or defending a tile with a feature on it while improvements (such as a fort) can only add a static defense bonus. So you could have infantry units that receive a +100% defense modifier in trenches while tanks receive no defense modifier but get a +100% attack modifier instead. The biggest difference would probably be how they're created and how you wanted to handle that. You could have them created automagically in the same tiles as fortified units, only allow them on tiles adjacent to the border, remove them if they're unoccupied (random disappearance chance maybe?), or build them programatically in tiles that have a required improvement or any combination of these (or more) rules. It's really pretty easy to control features in either Python (blech! Slow... bad Python, bad! ) or the SDK :)

    The biggest concern for the 'feature vs. improvement' descision for you will be what do you want trenches to coexist with? If you want it possible to have trenches & trees (or floodplains) in the same tile you need to make them as an improvement otherwise making them as a feature will be fine.
     
  20. Dale

    Dale Deity

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    I would be inclined to do them as a feature. Yes, you'll lose the ability to co-exist with jungle/forest/oasis/ice/fallout/floodplains, but then trenches destroyed whatever was in the area (forests cut down for the wood, etc). It's a believable replacement.

    And features are easy to connect to adjacent tiles like you want. :) The only other logical way is to use a route.

    Having them as improvements is doable, but you'd have to define an improvement for each connection direction, as well as monitor each plot with a trench for required changes. Messy!
     

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