[C3C] Does Anyone Know What Happens When You Give Military Units a Pop Cost?

B-29_Bomber

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I'm currently working on a "Colonization" style map (if you want to see my specific inspiration check out Bonecanoe86's very old (like 12 years old) series on a map he made.) and I am considering introducing a Pop cost to military units.

In theory I could see this as an absolute win! With this change I see individual military units becoming much more valuable. They basically represent a certain number (the exact number would vary based on unit type) of productive pops becoming unproductive military units. The trade off is, do you want a strong military or a strong economy (or something in the middle). I'm also considering making it possible for military units to rejoin cities. Here's the exact Pop numbers I'm considering (these are hardly final numbers, BTW):

Infantry Units: 1 Pops.
Cavalry Units: 2 Pops.
Artillery Units: 3 Pops.
Ancient Era Sea Units: 1 Pops.
Medieval Era Sea Units: 2 Pops.
Industrial Era Sea Units: 3 Pops.
Modern Era Sea Units 3 Pops.
Armor Units (like tanks in Industrial and Modern ages): 4 Pops.
Air Units: 4 Pops.
Missile Units: 4 Pops.
Nukes: 8 Pops. Nukes are a big frigging deal and should be treated as such.

Again: NOT FINAL NUMBERS!

I just want to make sure that there isn't any sort of unintended consequences (particularly negative) for such a balance change for the AI. This isn't a core aspect of the scenario so if it's not workable (or workable, just not by me) I simply won't include it.

I'm considering making a thread for this scenario specifically (semi-soonish) and if I do I'll link it here.
 
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Predator145

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Messages
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I'm currently working on a "Colonization" style map (if you want to see my specific inspiration check out Bonecanoe86's very old (like 12 years old) series on a map he made.) and I am considering introducing a Pop cost to military units.

In theory I could see this as an absolute win! With this change I see individual military units becoming much more valuable. They basically represent a certain number (the exact number would vary based on unit type) of productive pops becoming unproductive military units. The trade off is, do you want a strong military or a strong economy (or something in the middle). I'm also considering making it possible for military units to rejoin cities. Here's the exact Pop numbers I'm considering (these are hardly final numbers, BTW):

Infantry Units: 1 Pops.
Cavalry Units: 2 Pops.
Artillery Units: 3 Pops.
Armor Units (like tanks in Industrial and Modern ages): 4 Pops.
Air Units: 4 Pops.
Missile Units: 4 Pops.
Nukes: 8 Pops. Nukes are a big frigging deal and should be treated as such.

Again: NOT FINAL NUMBERS!

I just want to make sure that there isn't any sort of unintended consequences (particularly negative) for such a balance change for the AI. This isn't a core aspect of the scenario so if it's not workable (or workable, just not by me) I simply won't include it.

I'm considering making a thread for this scenario specifically (semi-soonish) and if I do I'll link it here.

You would need to have the required pop to be able to train the unit like a settler. If a pop requiring unit is capturable and gets captured (like a settler) it will result in the number of "captured unit" in the setting. So in stock game, that unit is the "worker". A settler has no combat values and HP and costs 2 pop. If a settler gets captured it will result in 2 slave workers.
 

B-29_Bomber

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You would need to have the required pop to be able to train the unit like a settler. If a pop requiring unit is capturable and gets captured (like a settler) it will result in the number of "captured unit" in the setting. So in stock game, that unit is the "worker". A settler has no combat values and HP and costs 2 pop. If a settler gets captured it will result in 2 slave workers.
But are there any other issues with military units costing Pops?
 

Predator145

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But are there any other issues with military units costing Pops?
No game mechanics issues I could think of. The AI will be able to use it. But how well it will perform vs the human is another story. Note that the AI can't rejoin cities even if you give them that ability because units given the AI strat flag Offense and Defense will never perform such actions.
 

B-29_Bomber

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No game mechanics issues I could think of. The AI will be able to use it. But how well it will perform vs the human is another story. Note that the AI can't rejoin cities even if you give them that ability because units given the AI strat flag Offense and Defense will never perform such actions.
Thank you! I will probably hold off adding this to my scenario until I get it to a semi-playable state.

Also, just posted the link to the dedicated thread! It also has a Pre-Alpha version of the scenario in it! Basically Pre-Alpha is just all the work I got done up until yesterday. Think of it more like an Alpha 0.

I'm currently working on Alpha 1, which I'll post more about later today on that thread.
 

CorvusFortis

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If you want pop-cost units to be mass-produced, they will drain AI of population.Player will have huge advantage here, especially if there's a unit which human player can spam without pop cost and abuse it.

Good example is The Great War scenario - infantry units cost population, while artillery is free. Human player can spam artillery and destroy land units with it, while AI just keep building infantry, reducing own population and wasting it.
 

AnthonyBoscia

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Units that cost population will also cripple the AI during the expansion phase, as their incessant unit spam will drain population needed for settlers.
 

B-29_Bomber

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Messages
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If you want pop-cost units to be mass-produced, they will drain AI of population.Player will have huge advantage here, especially if there's a unit which human player can spam without pop cost and abuse it.

Good example is The Great War scenario - infantry units cost population, while artillery is free. Human player can spam artillery and destroy land units with it, while AI just keep building infantry, reducing own population and wasting it.

Well luckily that won't be a problem. All military units will cost Pop so the human player won't have the advantage in that regard at least.

Units that cost population will also cripple the AI during the expansion phase, as their incessant unit spam will drain population needed for settlers.

Well, in the Old World in my scenario all civs start with cities, terrain developments (bare minimum roads connecting all cities), city buildings, Pops in those cities, and fully expanded cultural borders. There's no real land to expand into in the Old World. They also start with substantive militaries as well. Hell, at start these civs can't even build settlers.

The expansion phase doesn't begin until civs research Navigation (which unlocks Ocean travel access and settler building. Also, there are plenty of civs that lack access to the World Ocean and are thus landlocked and at a disadvantage (and some of them aren't even all that powerful). So if a human player wants to give the AI a leg up somewhat, they could start as one of those civs.

Either way, I intend to create two versions of the scenario: One with and one without Mil Unit Pop Cost. Just to see how both play out.
 

timerover51

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I have modified the World War 2 War in the Pacific scenario to have population costs for units, along with changing combat values. The Battleship is the strongest naval surface unit in the game, and has a population cost of 8. The Japanese AI appears to be building them exclusively in seacoast cities, and is rapidly draining the population of those cities. The other AI appear to be doing the same thing. The result is the Japanese ships being sunk, while I have the US submarines sinking the transports, that do not appear to be replaced.

The AI will build the strongest combat unit possible regardless of the population cost, even while draining the cities of producing citizens.
 
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Ozymandias

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I have modified the World War 2 War in the Pacific scenario to have population costs for units, along with changing combat values. The Battleship is the strongest naval surface unit in the game, and has a population cost of 8. The Japanese AI appears to be building them exclusively in seacoast cities, and is rapidly draining the population of those cities. The other AI appear to be doing the same thing. The result is the Japanese ships being sunk, while I have the US submarines sinking the transports, that do not appear to be replaced.

The AI will build the strongest combat unit possible regardless of the population cost, even while draining the cities of producing citizens.
... Which is why I, long ago ( :old: ), used to call the "A.I." the, "Artificial Idiot."

:D
 

timerover51

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... Which is why I, long ago ( :old: ), used to call the "A.I." the, "Artificial Idiot."

:D
That definitely applies in my modified WW2 in the Pacific scenario. I have watched as the AI uses three battleships, costing 8 population each, to escort one transport carrying ONE, repeat ONE, unit to attack my forces. I had one 10HP Japanese light tank unit attack a 104HP US Marine Army in a town, defense boost of 50 per cent. That is so totally idiotic. Note, the light tank did not last long. With the battleships costing so much population, the coast cities are basically undefended to a strong attack. Tokyo had all of two defenders, which the AI promptly sent out to attack my invasion army. That was very short and sweet. The two Flak units did not last long either defending the capital.
 

Civinator

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This is why in my eyes it is the best method, to limit the number of "superheavy units" in the game to be gained only by autoproduction.
 

Alekseyev_

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Another option with Flintlock's C3X is to limit the production availability of a unit to a small wonder. This will still allow you to affect/control the production rate at a certain level, but it will eventually remain capped at that one city's production output. For example, in a scenario, I limited the production of a special forces unit (with many flags that would make the AI addicted to producing this unit) to the city that contains the intelligence agency. This also means that you won't get any free units and instead of producing something else, will have to dedicate much of this city's production to the desired unit.

I also noticed how a city improvement that produces a local resource required for some advanced units will cause more variety on the battlefield, as some cities will not have this and instead build more basic units (which are still competetive to a certain degree). Of course, eventually, you might put it into every city, but that might not be economical nor desirable due to the time/resource investment. The same effect can be achieved with the functionality in the first paragraph, I just chose the local resource option for better (and automatic) civilopedia visibility.
 
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