Discussion in 'Civ - Ideas & Suggestions' started by Siptah, May 29, 2017.
This (and DudewiththeFood's post above) is indeed more or less what I was thinking of.
To continue with Boris's point, it's completely absurd to know Social Media without even knowing how to harness electricity, yet is perfectly possible in Civ VI!
Yes, technology is a synonym for "applied science." In fact, according to the Dewey Decimal System, books pertaining to science is in the 500s, while books pertaining to technology is in the 600s.
Discovering gunpowder has significant effects in world history; gunpowder can be used for guns, cannons, or bombs. It also made instant militias more common, as it takes much less time for a random farmhand to learn how to use a musket than how to learn to use a crossbow.
Likewise, discovering High-Density Transistors could lead to Computers, which could lead to Internet. Internet could be branched off to Social Media (culture, tourism, and diplomacy boost), E-Commerce (gold and amenity boost), and Wikis (science and tourism boost).
I personally don't have a problem with eras and tech trees because it allows game creators to control when you get to certain things. What i don't like is that yo can beeline down a certain path and ignore almost the entire tree case in point you can completely skip the medieval era by going down the sailing path. I fix this with mods but still i think be lining in this game is wore than in civ 5 because of how great people work.
There are a bunch of different ideas in this thread about what the modern era is supposed to represent. Based on some information present in comments in the game files, it looks like firaxis was assuming the modern era should start around ~1880. There are a number of features of this time period that can distinguish it from the earlier industrial era. The industrial revolution was a major shift in the production and agricultural practices of nations. Pre-industrial nations usually have about 90% of the population involved in Agriculture in some way- either growing, herding, transporting or selling food. This was necessary to sustain the population. Industrialization saw many technologies that increased this productivity such that a post-industrial nation has about 50% of the population involved in agriculture. This represents a 500% increase in the urban populations of these areas. The industrial era was a transitional period though. Because of large influxes of people into cities, new jobs and types of work became available in factories. As steam engines are developed, transport and manufacturing possibilities increase exponentially. New materials and tools are developed for building infrastructure. Because of the industrial revolution, iron bridges are built for the first time and it's used as a structural component in buildings.
The modern era is the world that is created by the advances of the industrial era: it is different in that cities have grown much larger, there is public education, iron and steel buildings that are much taller than could be seen in previous eras. Gas lamps are beginning to be replaced by lightbulbs as electricity is discovered. Advances in medicine (ex Louis Pasteur) lead to better ways to innoculate against diseases.
An analogy is that the industrial revolution is puberty and the modern era is adulthood.
Beyond that though, I think the modern era c. 1880 would be much more familiar to people today than 100 years earlier, for example take a look at men's fashion in 1780 versus 1880:
Spoiler 1779 France :
Spoiler 1880's :
These two images are 100 years apart and today is ~145 years after the second image yet I think modern fashion today has much more in common with 1880's fashion than the 1880's does with the 1780's. I think this also means that the 1880s is culturally more similar to the current day than it was to the 1780's.
Many people in the West still wear hats today even, albeit not in a formal way as before. For example, baseball caps are even popular in countries where baseball isn't popular (even many cricket players began adopting baseball caps).
Specifically, the collection of technologies that changed everything about human society was the application of artificial power to Everything people did. Water power, animal power, and wind power had been harnessed for centuries, but it was all limited: water only falls so fast, wind only blows so hard, and there is an Upper Limit beyond which it is more destructive than helpful (no one ever tried to use a windmill in a Hurricane, or a waterwheel in a Tsunami!). Steam Power was unlimited, because you could keep improving the technology and build bigger, more powerful steam engines and apply them both to stationary power and mobile power: factory machinery and railroads. These changed everything about how people lived and perceived the world.
First, the railroad made it possible to do almost anything, anywhere. Want a city in the desert? Use the railroad to bring in materials, people and food from Anywhere Else the railroad runs, and the piping to bring in water. The only limit is where the railroad runs. In game terms, every city connected by a railroad now has a City Radius that extends the length of the railroad. In a nutshell, before the railroad no human being had ever gone faster than 40 miles and hour unless he was falling off a cliff - after railroads, Anyone with the price of a ticket could go further, faster than any King of Kings before the railroad.
Second, the steam-powered factory allowed not only massive increase in productivity, but also required massive concentrations of people to tend the machines, and this was possible because the railroad could feed them wherever you decided to put the factory. Result: the majority of people within a few generations were living in greater (urban) concentrations rather than next to the food sources. In addition, people's daily personal schedules changed. Since before Homo Erectus, the day was the daylight. With the requirements of the machinery-driven industry and the consequent development of artificial light, that definition changed. People's lives no longer ran according to seasons, planting, harvesting or husbandry, they ran according to the Time Clock (No coincidence that the first clocks and watches in the 17th [pre-Industrial] century had no Minute Hands - there was no requirement to be that precise. After Steam Powered Industry started in, Minute Hands and Second Sweeps became common, because the interlocking workings of machines require precision)
As a result of the cascading changes started by the application of the steam engine, people's jobs, schedules, and lives all changed. As a consequence of great concentrations of people being more susceptible to epidemic diseases (always true: ancient Rome averaged an epidemic every 10 - 15 years) medicine went looking for Remedies, produced Germ Theory and Anticsepsis, and in every industrializing nation the population surged in numbers - and flocked to the cities.
All the changes since then have just been More Of The Same: more power (electrical, internal combustion, nuclear), more speed, more precision. The same watches that had to develop second hands in the Industrial Era now track individual heart beats, but the Massive Change was from tracking days and seasons to tracking Minutes.
Or, the Industrial Era is Puberty, with all its massive changes in your personal perceptions, wants and needs, and the Modern Era is Adultery, when you think you can satisfy all the wants, needs, and desires all at once...
As in other Eras, the Industrial Era starts at different times in different Civilizations, because it starts whenever that Civ starts using Artificial Power. Historically, this started with steam engines, but some 'third world' nations in the 20th and 21st centuries have gone straight from Animal/Wind/Water power to Internal Combustion and even more advanced power sources.
Two points I want to make, though:
1. The Industrial Era is probably second only to the discovery of Fire or Tools in the changes it made to how humans live. IF you must have Eras, it is absolutely necessary to include some form of the Industrial Era.
2. The Industrial Era was Massively Disruptive. People do not like to change everything about the way they live. Result: Luddites, the Liberal Revolutions of 1830 and 1848, Karl Marx, and reactionary Fundamentalism of all kinds - people pining for the Good Old Days, which weren't. Hobbes' observation that a person's life was 'nasty, brutish, and short' is Pre-Industrial Era, and not inaccurate for 90+% of the population then.
That means, in Game Terms, the discovery and application of Steam Power should be followed by Factories, a change in the definition of City Radius, huge population increases, and recurring Unhappiness unless specific Social/Civic Policies are adopted: the extreme capitalism that came in with Factories always led to great increases in wealth and productivity, and greater concentration of wealth in fewer hands - those that controlled the Factories. That in turn has always led to either Revolution or Reform. The Industrial Era changes both Technologies and Civics requirements, and the game should reflect that.
The industrial revolution was a greater increase in wealth for everybody. The greatest increase came to the lower classes. The middle class went from a small sliver of the population made up of skilled laborers and various merchants to the majority of the population as you need a whole bunch of new jobs in an industrial society that you really didn't need before. Wealth concentration really didn't change much basically going from landed nobility to the factory owners but with the lower classes lives improving greatly.
Working in a early industrial factory sucked, working non-mechanized subsistence farming sucks a whole lot more.
I would argue that the wealth increase for the lower classes would be more the modern era. First the industrial era came, with all it's machinery, factories and harsh working conditions, and then people got fed up with said harsh working conditions and demanded better pay and everything and then wealth increased all across the board.
'Capitalism", as represented by the capital-intensive 'Infrastructure' of Factories and Railroads, has two basic characteristics:
1. It is the greatest Wealth Producing system ever devised by the fertile mind of man.
2. It is the Worst Wealth Distribution system ever devised by the mind of man, in its purest form.
Therefore, as I stated in the earlier Post, the Factory Revolution produces immense wealth, concentrated in fewer hands, until either you get (demanded) Reform/redistribution of the wealth, or you get violent Revolution which smashes a lot of the wealth and redistributes whatever is left - although usually not in the way the people starting the revolution intended...
I think it would make a much more intriguing game if the gamer had to deal with these historical realities: the interaction between increasing Unhappiness as the factories/Industrialization change every aspect of personal life, and the Civics/Social Policies that represent the Progressive/"New Deal" (USA) or Social Democracy(European) policies that 'reined in' rampant capitalism and redistributed some of the Wealth.
Or, the Gamer being The Supreme Omniscience of his Civ, you could opt for a complete Totalitarian System that stamps everything nice and flat. - As long as the game reflects that a Totalitarian system of either the Left or the Right persuasion is wretchedly inefficient at producing Wealth compared to Free Market Capitalism. Dictatorial systems may be able to Direct what wealth and production they have more efficiently, but their entire system is less efficient. I refer you to the Russian Communist system, which could direct immense percentages of their (relatively) shrinking percentage of the World Wealth into their Space Program and military, until they found out that even spending a much tinier fraction of their Wealth on the same things, the Capitalist West could outspend/outcompete them. - and don't get me started on the economic Abomination that was Nazi Germany's economy! Even with massive amounts of slave labor and near-starvation rationing they managed to produce a military that largely De-modernized from 1941 to 1945. Other systems just don't compete with Capitalism, but the accurate Perils of Capitalism and the defects/advantages of the other systems have to be accurately reflected in the Game.
To paraphrase Churchill, it is the worst system ever devised for distributing wealth except for all the other systems. Remember, wealth isn't your pay check. It is what your paycheck can buy. The industrial revolution took things that took weeks to days to produce and made them in hours or minutes. Supply went up and so did demand because now more people could actually afford many new things because the cost to produce fell off a cliff and so did prices.
Also, FDR was a horrible horrible president whose economic policies did nothing but extend the depression.
Didn't Churchill say that about democracy, not capitalism?
I don't know where you got that idea, but I'm going to believe the experts:
he's ranked in the top 3 by every single list.
Not just that, but rankings by pro-market organizations even gave FDR a high rank.
George Washington is highly ranked, not just because he's the first president and that he's brilliant, but also because he's not affiliated with any political party, which means that he is highly regarded by Americans regardless of political affiliation.
The linked post above also showed that, at least among historians, differences in ranking depending on party were very small, agreeing nearly 100% on both the top 10 and the bottom 7.
Historians like figures that are 'men of action' who resided over crisis, even if the crisis was of their own making, over those who were quietly competent and managed to nip problems in the bud before they became a crisis. The former are much more interesting than the latter even if one would wish to live more under the latter than the former.
Internment of citizens and theft of citizens property already make FDR bottom 10 in my book. Add in his horrible and quite fascist economic polices, creation of the cult of the president, and driving the final nail in the coffin of federalism and you have a president who should be loathed rather than celebrated. That is all I am going to say on that to not turn this thread into a bunch of political rants.
You are correct in that Industrial Capitalism reduced the price of factory-made goods dramatically. So much so that the game almost needs a special mechanism for the first Civilizations that build Textile Factories, to represent the vast amount of wealth from Cheap Cloth or Cheap Clothing that the Civ can rake in. On the other hand, you are incorrect to suppose that the advent of Factories was a 'Rising Tide that raised all boats' - it raised a whole new class of non-aristocratic Wealthy (factory owners) which had to be accommodated by the Ruling Class one way or the other, and it led to a rise in the percentage of people that could call themselves 'middle class', BUT the factory worker's wages were not sufficient for other than bare subsistence and their living and working conditions were abominable - not only somewhat in comparison to pre-industrial conditions, but absolutely in comparison to everyone else in the society around them. This had to change, and every single country that developed as a result of Rampant Capitalism also had a 'Reform' of some kind and a real threat of Revolution that led to the reform. Bismarck was nobody's idea of a Progressive or Socialist, but he pioneered the Social Democratic reforms in Germany because the alternative was possible revolution as in 1830 and 1848, only this time Economic Revolution instead of Political.
Another aspect of Capitalism that the game may or may not include are the results of Irrational Exuberance. The terms have changed, but every X number of years (less than 20) there is a Panic, Recession, Correction, or Depression. They are all the same: people get to thinking that the entire Capital Mobility system ('stock market') is a Free Lunch, and it ain't. The problem with representing this in game terms is that they occur for much of the game within just a few turns - too few to really react to them in Civ terms.
My point remains: when in the game you can start building Factories, it has a profound effect on Civics and Policy as well as Production, and the effects are both positive and negative. Furthermore, to choose any system other than Democratic Capitalism, like Fascism or Communism (by whatever titles the game uses) means you also accept very real liabilities in Production and Wealth generation - trading them for 'advantages' in Population Management.
As an aside, and another thing that game designers don't seem to understand, Fascism does not give any advantages in Military, other than a willingness to shoot more of your own troops than a Democracy would dare to. If Fascism by and of itself was a Military Multiplier, we'd be studying the military achievements of Italy, Romania and Hungary in WWII!
Literally the Inspiration(Eureka) for Class Struggle in Civ6 which unlocks Communism.
That's interesting. "Renaissance Era" in this game really is Renaissance, Baroque, Enlightenment periods all in one and that bugged me as well.
Interesting, and another game thought of that 14 years ahead of our time.
Rise of Nations, released in 2003, has historical periods progressing this way:
To argue that Industrial starts at 1870s you have a strong point, but I would still argue that Industrial Era is still supposed to be 1800s given the techs and civics they decided to explore. Nationalism and Colonialism became massively popular (not just in Europe but in the entire world) during the 19th Century. Cannon technology (Ballistics) and military science drastically improved during this period. Steam-powered locomotives and rifled guns made their first appearance then. Hygiene became an important concept in Medicine as explored by Sanitation tech.
As followed by Modern Era which would be very late 19th Century into both of the World Wars.
For UK it was the last days of the Victorian Era, for 'Murica it was the last days of Wild West, for China it was the last days of the Emperor, after WW1 Ottoman and Austro-Hungarian Empires were not to be seen, a lot of the 19th Century customs died out by this period. On the other hand, Scientific Revolution(early 20th Century), diverse artistic movements (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/20th-century_art) and a lot of other inventions that makes a world "Modern" appeared in this era.
You have touched on the real problem with 'Eras' as a game system: they have to be defined by specific Technologies and Civics, because hard and fast historical dates for them vary from country to country, and I would argue that many countries skipped some Eras almost completely.
For instance, "Medieval" and "Renaissance" Eras are almost entirely European, and evidence for them elsewhere is spotty at best.
Many countries in the 19th century never went through the Industrial Era at all, but instead went through a "Colonial" Era and after that (post WWII), went straight through the Industrial and Modern Eras within a couple of decades to the Information Era.
And, arguably, any geographically large country is usually in several Eras at once: look at the differences between northeastern and southern USA in the early 19th century, or rural and industrial China today: officially, both Civs in the Industrial or Information Eras with parts of the Civ 'enjoying' applied technology (and Civics) more characteristic of the Medieval or 'Renaissance' Eras.
In game terms, how do you define and represent that?
This isn't even acknowledging the fact that historians really don't believe that Medieval was an era but more like a historical process wherein states are reformed slowly after governmental and population collapse. We only have so much historical information on Europe and Japan because they happened relatively recently but there is all sorts of evidence that it was a repeating cycle of complex state -> collapse -> feudal states -> complex state. The Egyptian intermediate periods would be good examples of medieval periods for example.
Separate names with a comma.