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[GS] Do Governors need a rework?

Discussion in 'Civ6 - General Discussions' started by acluewithout, Jun 13, 2019.

  1. acluewithout

    acluewithout Deity

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    I’ve been trying for about a month to draft a good post on everything wrong with Governors. Witty. Insightful. References to Gilgabro and Hairy Harold of Hassock the Third.

    It keeps clocking in at about 3000 words.

    I give up. They just ... suck. Suck so much. Such a negative thing to say, I know. There are many things I really like about the game and I’m super excited about the next patch. But Governors really badly subtract from the game. If we get a third expansion, FXS please rework them entirely.

    I’ll just make a few points (extracted from my more massive thesis, and out through my patented crazy internet rant machine):
    • Look, the core mechanic is okay. Each Governor lets you build up one city really tall and specialise it. And that then gives you a tough but interesting decision (awesome), because you also want to move the governor around for loyalty and because some have abilities you can use across multiple cities situationally (magnus chop, liang UIs, victor defence). And you get that tension about whether to use governors to buff a city or spread them around at multiple levels - eg when you get titles (buff an existing governor or get another one), and when you move them (because they take time to establish).
    • Thing is, while the loyalty aspect works, particularly the way governors interact with cards and with some having extra loyalty, the buffing cities is terrible. I know I’ve said this a lot the past few weeks, but because you can only have one of each governor, you just end up with one of each type of specialist city and they’re all kinda samey. My God. I think I end up with a Pingala City every flipping game. Social Policies were never this rigid or samey.
    • Having the same seven faces every game, for every player, is awful. It just kills the roleplaying. You just can’t invest these guys with personality because they are so specific; and the worse they repeat every game. You know, I get really attached to promoted units and spies, because they have these individual names, their own little history, and they have these generic faces so I’m free to project personality into them (a bit like a blank faced montessori doll). But not the governors. Every game it’s that chipper hoi hoi Magnus and slightly racial stereotype Pingala.
    • Why oh why don’t we compete for Governors like we do great people? That just seems like a no-brained and would have for with the other GP mechanics so well.
    • Why aren’t they based on real historical characters? And why do I have to constantly get pulled out of the map everytime I upgrade them, into their silly repetitive screen? And really, why do I only have one Castellian, one Dipmlomat. I have this epic empire and I only ever have one diplomat???
    Look. I’m only posting this - hopefully for the last time - because I’m guessing FXS will be doubling down on a third expansion shortly. I really hope if they are, they do something about governors.

    There not so bad, so immersion breaking that I won’t play Civ VI. And there is the germ of a good idea, but the current implementation is too gimmicky and narrow / rigid and just doesn’t fit with the more rich and detailed mechanics the rest of the game has.

    Governors suck. Please reconsider them.

    Thoughts?
     
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2019
    civviefan likes this.
  2. Naeshar

    Naeshar Warlord

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    Oh another rant about governors. OK.

    All you pointed out is that the governors mechanically work quite well (buffs, loyalty, moving around), but it gets repetitive.

    I don't mind, it's another added layer of complexity in the game. You can either go the same direction or play different. Religious play needs different governors than culture play and different from science play. You choose. At the very end game only you can get all governors.
    They must be recognizable for counterplay. If you know what governor AI has in a city, you can decide your strategy. Victor in this city? Better wait for a spy to assassinate him or change target. Pingala in city? Pillage and loot the campus primarily. Moksha? Avoid religious combat here.
    I wonder why are the faces a problem. They were given faces because they act like your right hands in the cities, and fit into the cartoony look and must be easily identifiable. Can you imagine the same effect with emblems? My bet is the governors would be less immersive.

    They cannot be based on historical characters - must be available to every civ once. They are primarily governors, not Castellan or Diplomat. Diplomats are your envoys and lady-in-waitings :D. It's a game, finally. You can always handicap yourself by never assigning a governor :-D.

    I really disapprove governors as great people idea. That would induce uncertainty which one you get, and could miss out on Victor when you really need it in this particular game. How would one get governor upgrades then?

    As for repetitivity - what isn't? Pick one: leaders, civilizations, improvements, districts, wonders!, units, civics, technologies, inspirations and eurekas, city names...
     
  3. acluewithout

    acluewithout Deity

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    Well. Good to know people have a different view.

    To be clear, while I think the “governor / loyalty” mechanic works well, I don’t actually think the city specialisation mechanics works well at all. Because the Governors are so narrow, rigid and repetitive, they really add very little to that part of the game and they don’t really let you build up more than one or more cities.

    As city buffs or specialists, they really seem like just all the worst parts of the old Social Policy system.
     
  4. Caesar Augustus 27 BC

    Caesar Augustus 27 BC Chieftain

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    Governors got changes made to them in Gathering Storm that enhanced them and made them much better to use. I don't think they need a total revamp as a mechanic, they work differently from Great People for a reason.
     
  5. SxSnts9

    SxSnts9 Warlord

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    I personally think they should be removed from the game entirely. The buffs they provide are either OP or just completely useless. So you end up using the same governors in the same kind of cities with the same kind of strategy...in almost every game. Not my idea of fun or strategic thinking. Think about it...if they removed the governor mechanic entirely would you miss it at all in your games?

    They've had a lot of great hits in Civ VI, but it's time to cut losses on this miss. Either a COMPLETE reworking or a removal would be best at this point. Obviously this is just my opinion, but I'm interested to see others.
     
    acluewithout likes this.
  6. Scaramanga

    Scaramanga Brickhead

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    They would have to remove the loyalty mechanic with it. They're just an interesting way to manage your empire other than sending troops everywhere.
     
  7. SxSnts9

    SxSnts9 Warlord

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    Why would they have to remove Loyalty? They could easily replace the +8 loyalty for having a governor established with policy cards or government reforms or great people or (Here's a scary thought) just make the loyalty mechanic a bit more difficult to manage.

    Remember the +8 loyalty bit is just a side part of governors. If that's the only reason to keep them in the game I feel like that shows just how terrible the governor mechanic really is.
     
    acluewithout likes this.
  8. Scaramanga

    Scaramanga Brickhead

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    I think they're supposed be moved around on the map while they give loyalty so they represent something on the map. Great People would be the same way but they are really meant to be retired at some point and some do already give loyalty.
    Some civilizations depend on at least some kind of new mechanic to give them unique bonuses and that involves governors.
     
  9. iammaxhailme

    iammaxhailme Emperor

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    Not a rework but a rebalance there are too many governor promotions that I never use. Viktor is basically useless and I just use him as a loyalty bomb or to get the golden age point for hiring all governors. Moksha's pressure ability, from being hired (not a promotion) is useful, and his top level "buy districts with faith" is useful, but everything else is almost useless. Meanwhile I find myself taking Magnus + settlers are free as my first two governor titles in almost every game, and then pingala + two or three promotions as my next couple almost every game (occaisonally liang is in there for more builders).

    And while we're on the subject of Liang, I HATE HATE HATE shuffling her around to make fisheries and parks lategame. It's the most boring kind of micromanagement. Just have their promotion allow them to be built empire-wide, and just give the small bonus extra yield to the city where she resides
     
  10. Naeshar

    Naeshar Warlord

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    I'll repeat myself, you choose your governors. It's you making the same plays. You must also account for the AI, as they use them extensively as well - even if not optimally :D. (note, Victor is used by AI more than by human players)
    I do miss governors when I launch a vanilla game. (I miss age points and gov. plaza more).
    Calling for removal of a mechanic in live game is wrong. I agree it's a prime candidate for reconsidering in next game.

    I wanted to ask about mods. Is there already potential for new/adjusted governors? Any working mods around?
     
  11. Caprikel

    Caprikel Warlord

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    The shuffling them around part is what I like least about them. Having to wait 5 turns usually means I won't remember that I had something important to do in that city, since a lot of things happen in 5 turns.
     
  12. Victoria

    Victoria Regina Supporter

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    I think governors are a great concept. A ‘good’ governor could make a hell of a difference historically. Not so comfy on the approach but not as opposed as others, after all, you do not have to move them.
    They certainly should only make a local difference and it is their relative power that makes people shuffle them.
    Stop such power and they will not shuffle, then they are fairly useless and can be removed from the game.

    You could implement them in another way like giving each governor of a city random stats and they are stuck with that city and you can spend gold to get rid of them, even to get them in the first place, so +3 science -1 culture type stats.
    Less management but still utilising the functionality and different civs could get positive bonuses for different stats.

    Implementing this mechanic this way, intentionally or not, was for the immersive and the micro users, Firaxis choice. We will never be happy with everything in the game.

    Love the idea of English governors with + loyalty and gild but - science and culture. Brutal local rule!
     
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  13. UWHabs

    UWHabs Deity

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    I'd definitely agree that they need tweaks, but I think they work well mostly.

    I'd agree that more variety would be nice. I would love to see them handled like great people - even if you keep the "Categories", have it so that each new governor of a class has a unique initial ability, but the same tree afterwards. So maybe Magnus the Steward has +50% chopping, whereas Joaquim the Steward gives you +50% production on city centre buildings. That way, the order that they come up, and which ones are available to you when you hire them will vary, and you can't plan strategies around one being around. Plus it would let you double-up on a category if you want to go all in on financiers, for example.

    But other than that, and a little bit of rebalancing that's always needed, I think they work well. I would also say that there should be a larger benefit to promoting governors up the tree, since there's simply not enough bonuses to having a "T3" governor. Whether that be governors giving you like +2 loyalty per promotion instead of just a flat +8, or the base bonuses should be more like "+10% to chops per promotion" instead of just a flat +50%, I don't know. I do also think that more civs need to play with governors more. There should be a civ that lets you move governors without the 5 turn delay (or maybe just a 1 turn delay or something). More civs like Korea which give you bonuses for having governors in your cities. Maybe one civ could have a bonus like "when a governor is established in a city it cannot flip". I don't know - can figure out historical reasons for these. But would love to see a larger interaction with them and the rest of the game.
     
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  14. Dragabond

    Dragabond Warlord

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    Governors worked better in Endless Legend, primarily because they were the same hero types that could also be used in your armies. They leveled up and got promotions that you chose for them, that either made them better generals or better governors. Your decision to have them tromp through the muck with the grunts or planting them in a city to get fat and rich was only one choice you had to make. The pool that they were drawn from was the same for everybody, and the pool was quite large. Individual heroes could be similar, but always had some differences that made them unique(ish).

    The governors in Civ 6 aren't quite the same, obviously, since they can't also gallivant around the map killing things and earning experience. That said, Civ isn't setup the same way as EL. The way the governors were implemented works for the Civ 6 system. Which isn't to say that it can't be improved. Unique governors are clearly something that can be done (looking at you Ibrahim), and I agree that it would make the game more interesting if the selection of governors wasn't the same every time. It might be a lot to add on, I honestly have no idea. A unique set of governors for each culture type might be easier, and would still make more sense than what we have now.

    It can't just be balancing issues, since every Civ and leader already has their own unique abilities that they bring to the table. Governors just seem like a way to equalize some of that and put everybody back on the same path of homogenization. But if, say, not every governor had access to Fisheries, that would mean that civs with access to a governor with a fishery would have a (debatable) advantage. Which isn't necessarily a bad thing. (Personally I think fisheries, city parks and warrior monks should be just generally available rather than locked to a particular promotion/belief, but that's not the point here.)

    Generally I like the governors and have no complaints about them. But I like a lot of things that could be improved.
     
  15. Ziad

    Ziad Emperor

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    Governors are fine as a gameplay element. I'd like a mod that makes them more appropriate for your civilization though. Why is an Incan handling my Phoenician economy?
     
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  16. Scaramanga

    Scaramanga Brickhead

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    All I can recommend is using pins in the destination city and hopefully you'll remember. It is probably balanced to discourage moving them too much. I think Victor's 3 turn placement time and +5 garrison strength as well as the loyalty are underrated for securing a captured city.
     
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  17. acluewithout

    acluewithout Deity

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    I do mix up which governors I use in my games and do adapt to my terrain and situation. But even then, they are very repetitive. There are really only a handful of viable governor combinations (at least with the early titles). Governors end up feeling like policy cards with extra steps. And not even particularly good policy cards.

    The repetitive faces and screen that pulls you out of the game is just one more thing.
     
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  18. Arent11

    Arent11 King

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    That's my major gripe. You could have Isaac Newton as your science advisor, Napoleon as your general, Benjamin Franklin as your economic guy. The weird placeholder guys don't fit.
     
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  19. shmily_dana

    shmily_dana Warlord

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    I don't like having the same governors from everyone. The should at least have civilization-specific names and art. Maybe have at least one governor have an ability that helps their specific civilization. i.e for Germany a governor that buffs the Hansa in a city.
     
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  20. Scaramanga

    Scaramanga Brickhead

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    It would probably be confusing if you booted up a new game with a different civ and can't remember what the governors do because their genders and ethnicities are swapped even though they have the same promotions as the previous game.
     
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