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Has 1UPT Completely Destroyed this Franchise?

Discussion in 'Civ6 - General Discussions' started by CD7, Jan 13, 2017.

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  1. Art Morte

    Art Morte Prince

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    Well said, I agree.

    I simply dislike the idea of unlimited unit stacking, because it feels unrealistic. I want my strategy games to at least be somewhat realistic and believable in the way things work.
     
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  2. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam Top Logic

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    Unless one side grossly underbuilt, stack combat was about initiative and unit positioning, not stack sizes.

    Poor civ 4 strategy should not be used as the baseline for civ 4 strategy, any more than making sure you build no less than 10 melee ships in every game of civ 6 should be considered a baseline activity on Pangaea.

    Aside from putting civilians AND religious units on each their own layers, lack of stacking isn't the primary reason the game is so slow with regards to unit micro nor is it the reason the game is less tactically challenging.

    Said position can't be rational unless it is self-consistent. There is no way you can say that, play civ 6 for what it is, and be self-consistent.

    "My perception of what feels realistic" =/= realistic, and there is no reason near-infinite stacking can be seen as "less plausible" than many baseline game mechanics that are currently implemented. Arbitrary/irrational realism arguments are vexing red herrings :(.

    Actually no, the average standard of "acceptable" set by the market sinking like a ship isn't cute. It sucks and the doormat market has an influence on the quality of products available. Firaxis needs competition sorely, nearly as badly as EA does with Madden.
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2017
  3. SupremacyKing2

    SupremacyKing2 Deity

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    So what would be so terrible with letting the player group say 4-5 units together and moving them as one? Why does it have to be strictly 1UPT?
     
  4. c4c6

    c4c6 Prince

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    You make this statement and I will defend your right to do so as far as I can. Just I don't understand, why you are quoting my text for this purpose. So I suppose, you failed to perceive what I tried to express in context to the quote I used. Sorry, please excuse my poor abilities to express myself. I will try my best not to be quoted by you again.
     
  5. Unconquered Sun

    Unconquered Sun Emperor

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    I have no idea what you are talking about.

    I remember all the tactical planning that went into a CIV war v the AI, and all the corrections I had to do after first contact and luck going this or that way.

    And pitboss multiplayer? I remember single turns where entire fronts collapsed to planned offensives of superb tactics, each unit out of dozens doing something significant, using 'engineering corps' to build roads to connect your previous lines to the advancing border as cities fell, minor things like the roaded/unroaded status of a single tile being decisive, using Great Artists to burst a key opening in the borders, recon, air force, naval landings all serving a purpose.

    Civ 6? Go read my report on my very first game - straight on deity. Unit type - just one. Promotion path - just one. Tactic: just place them where's room. End result: crushing win over the AIs. Such deep tactics.
     
  6. gettingfat

    gettingfat Emperor

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    To be frank, I actually like 1UPT to some extent. We all know that a veteran human player will beat the so called AI on equal footing whether it is SOD or 1UPT because humans will eventually find all sorts of loopholes to exploit. However, I personally believe most casual players are just like me, in fact won't actively exploit those little loopholes and just want a DECENT AI to get a 1UPT-based game to at least fun and challenging. As shown in some mods done for Civ 5 this is perfectly achievable. Unfortunately the devs clearly Christmas-rushed the game and totally boobooed.

    The devs honestly don't even need to totally upgrade the AIs, at least provide the customers who pay 59.99 some quick fixes to make the game a bit more challenging, and less time-consuming and annoying. There are actually a few things they can do:

    1. Allow multiple clicking of units for grouping to form a limited stack of say up to 5 units, and call it "marching formation". This stack cannot attack or pillage, and suffers substantial penalty in defense and moderate collateral damages when attacked (like an marching army getting ambushed in real wars), so the players will only use it in safe environment and need to unstack for battles, city seiging or pillaging. These limited stacks will be automatically on alert mode when marching so they won't blindly run into an obvious enemy or barb. The slowest moving unit decides the movement rate of the formation.
    2. With limited stacking, I just hope they reinstall ocean transport vessels for crossing oceans and limit the land units to only the coastal tiles (i.e. cannot enter ocean regardless of technology and cannot attack when they swim, and suffers severe penalties when attacked by naval units when they are swimming). The stack on transport can be unloaded directly to the land if empty or at coastal tiles (so give you room to unstack them and prevent severe damage). This will give naval units life again and make much more exciting amphibious invasion.
    3. Put religious and civilian units on other layers.
    4. Can pass a friendly or neutral unit/formation and can share tile with them for only 1 turn. The unit who originally occupies this tile can stay but the one who enters this tile has to leave in the next turn.
    5. AI military units need to be MUCH more aggressive. The aggressiveness may even vary for different civs (e.g. Japanese don't retreat at all even turning red to fully take advantage of their trait, and Indians retreat once health below 50%, etc) to give different civs some flavor. No retreat possible when defending the last 3 cities or capital. The highest priority in the attack is when killing enemy unit is possible. City will not produce any civilian unit and stop the existing build when more than certain number of enemies inside the city border.
    6. Except a few highly religious civs, put lower emphasis on the religious aspect. Even on a different layer, a carpet of missionaries or even worse inquisitors is still silly and annoying.
    7. Please upgrade the art of the map. The hill tiles in the fog are just so hard to differentiate from the plains.
     
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  7. Victoria

    Victoria Regina Supporter

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    How about if we can stack 3 of the same military unit in a tile, maybe with a seige engine and a general?
    That would be stacking and not 1 UPT but keep stacks at an acceptable level.
     
  8. SupremacyKing2

    SupremacyKing2 Deity

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    I am talking about how Firaxis itself said that 1UPT was about adding tactics. The general perception was that tactics were lacking in civ4 because you'd stack all your units together and just smash the enemy stack. Players did not need to think about where to place their ranged units or where to place their melee units since they would just stack them together. The whole idea of 1UPT was that by forcing 1 unit per tile, it forced players to think about where they should place their units. As a result, players needed to adopt tactics such as placing ranged units behind melee units, a tactic that was irelevant in civ4. I am not saying that it worked out that way, but that was the idea behind the switch to 1UPT. Obviously, as players have since discovered, 1UPT did not quite add the brilliant tactical combat that Firaxis hoped it would.
     
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  9. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam Top Logic

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    In this case, it is probably my representation of my point in response that is lacking. In essence, the fact that a large % of people still buy this game & enjoy it in spite of its current state creates a clear market incentive to not bother deviating from status quo. Firaxis has a poor history of going above that expectation over the past decade, so I have a shared disappointment in Firaxis and in the history-based TBS strategy game market for accepting the product at its current level of quality.

    To illustrate my point, imagine a scenario where your internet cut out for 20 minutes out of every hour. Which 20 minutes is random. You are upset with this, but 70-80% of the consumers on your internet plan (which you can't switch since it's the only option where you live) actually state they're happy with the service as-is! As a result, you are part of a "vocal minority" and your internet will continue right on cutting out every 20 minutes. Meanwhile, those happy with their 40 minutes will point out how cute it is that some people say they will move over the internet issue.

    Now picture that in the above scenario, you can get no time cut out in many other areas. That is the state of civ 6 UI/time between decisions vs other games, and the % time lost is similar.

    Many people blame 1 UPT for this, but 1 UPT is not the true cause. It marginally contributes, at best, and it isn't the reason the game has declined.

    I remember reading your Charlie BOTM and struggling quite a bit to get anywhere near your in-game progress rate. As I get bored of micro too quickly, I never got to that level, though I eventually was able to at least beat standard settings deity in civ 4.

    Little did I know that the end of my time regularly playing civ 4 would be the last time I'd struggle to win on deity in civ to this point. In civ 6? Make 6-10 units (more later to combine and keep promotions!), make a passing effort against losing them, kind of vaguely prioritize the best districts as you go and you're going to win if you're doing even basic heuristics that are kind of good.

    It's painful that players who never knew about the removed tactical considerations act like we actually have more now rather than less :(. Even if we remove the fact that you can basic melee the AI to death forever, the total # of potential things you can do now is less than before, due to how roads, promotions, collateral, resources, ZoC, and city defenses work.

    I'll throw down a gauntlet. I would argue against that this was a serious implementation consideration in the switch to 1 UPT or its retention in civ 6. And even if the developers were my debate opponent, I would win.

    Why? Because if tactics was really, truly a point of emphasis, one does not reduce the total number of meaningful considerations in a civ vs civ war, not deliberately and not without realizing that it was done. Maybe that idea was in Shafer's mind at some point, but it was rapidly dropped if you look at how patches/new additions have been added since civ 4. U Sun didn't even cover all the ways unit position could work for or against you in civ 4...
     
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2017
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  10. Biz_

    Biz_ Prince

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    i'm not saying i want RNG back

    i'm saying that the civ5/civ6 unit system is not just a change from stacking to 1UPT.
    it also messed up the pacing.

    a 1v1 battle between 2 units in civ5/civ6 can last a dozen turns with the gradual chip damage, healing, and retreating instead of a fight-to-the-death

    in older civs, these battles would actually conclude in a single turn with very few exceptions (retreat mechanics)
     
  11. gettingfat

    gettingfat Emperor

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    I actually think if the devs really wants a pure form of 1UPT because it introduces more tactics in the battles, it's perfectly OK. Combined arms in the same stack may introduce new issues and I bet the AI can't handle it.

    I don't mind spending time on playing a game, just make me feel entertained and worthy of my time. That's why I suggested marching formation style limited stacks only used for simplifying the tedious long march before and between battles, and for loading and packing onto transports for crossing the oceans. This may save players like me who are not interested at all on directing a dozen of units for 10+ turns to slowly cross a hilly area, allows more efficient use of the roads (some units no longer get pushed out of the road, which is unrealistic). It is also instrumental in reviving the true naval battles. Seeing a carpet of "naked" land units swimming across Atlantic ocean on the earth map is just too comical.
     
  12. ThunderLizard2

    ThunderLizard2 Warlord

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    The lead Civ V dev, Jon Shafer, has recanted on 1 UPT over 4 years ago, along with other Civ V decisions. 1 UPT was a well meaning but wrong headed. Hopefully, his At The Gates will correct the errors introduced into the Civ franchise.

    http://www.pcgamer.com/jon-shafer-c...-civ-v-explains-how-at-the-gates-will-differ/
     
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  13. JosEPh_II

    JosEPh_II TBS WarLord

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    To the OP,

    For me yes.

    All the rest of the "lunacy" for pandering to iphone and browser gamers just adds to it. Strategy and Tactics has been thrown out the Firaxis' window with it's last 3 products; CiV, BE, and Civ VI.

    @ThunderLizard2 ,
    One can only hope so. Shafer did much damage.
     
  14. Duuk

    Duuk Doom-Sayer Supporter

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    Can I just pop in here and agree with the crowd that thinks CTP2 had the best army mechanism of any civ game? 1 "unit" per tile, but a "unit" could be a combined army of up to 12 units, and each unit had strengths and weaknesses and each STACK fought until there was a winner. No Stack of Doom because you had to include a few siege weapons, a few flankers, some archers, and some front-line melee-type units.
     
  15. rschissler

    rschissler King

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    I've always wondered why that had no impact on Civ 6 designers.
     
  16. gettingfat

    gettingfat Emperor

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    Simple, because civ 5 sells well.

    Nowadays, the majority of the bigger companies are run by those "big picture guys", aka top college lawyers, mba, or some rich second generation, which means that they know very little about the technical specifics and all they care is the profit figure.
     
  17. SupremacyKing2

    SupremacyKing2 Deity

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    I know Firaxis seems to really love 1UPT but I really hope that the dev team that works on civ7 takes a long hard look at it. I think the civ franchise deserves something fresh.
     
  18. Gub

    Gub Chieftain

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    @SupremacyKing2, I doubt that the devs are overly attached to any mechanic. As designer its their job to figure out what works and what isn't within the project set limits. Mind you, some CIV mechanics which by now considered as core by many, took few iterations to polish.

    This seems plausible and certainly much more grounded than most ideas I seen in this thread. I seen similar suggestion, so [if it wasn't done before] it might be best to start a thread in ideas and suggestions to see if people can poke holes in it and improve.
     
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2017
  19. sherbz

    sherbz Emperor

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    I have to say that I disagree that there was zero strategy in stacks. There was arguably much more than build 3 archers and a couple of speamen and that’s your defence sorted. Every unit in Civ 4 had a hard counter apart from muskets and airships (and even they had counters later in the tree). Knights/horse/elephants were countered by spears and pikes. Swordsmen countered by axes. Macemen countered by crossbowmen. The composition of your stack would have a significant effect on both its defensive value and also its offensive value. Field the wrong units against an opposing stack and prepare to lose. It was often the case that a simple upgrade by your enemy would kill off the chance of an invasion. A prime example being Quechua rush (a warrior). As soon as your opponent teched bronze working and built even 1 or 2 axemen, that’s it, your invasion was over.


    Furthermore, if you were next to a warmonger who was much bigger than you were and would field a vastly (numerically) superior stack to you, a very good defensive stack was to have purely horseman/knights and a handful of catapults. Give your horse both flanking promotions and they would have roughly a 40-50% chance of retreat rather than die. If they retreat, they would damage the opposing stacks siege units. Have enough successful withdrawals, and your enemy loses all their siege. Then burn your catapults and mop up the rest. The net result was that your opponent lost all their army, and you lost about 30%.


    These are, in my opinion at least, far more interesting and strategic choices than 1UPT has ever brought to the table. It would have made much more sense to try and devlop this system rather than bin it in favour of what has proven to be a fairly uninteresting and ill thought out design choice.
     
  20. Olleus

    Olleus Deity

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    The paper-rock-scissors approach never really worked. When everything is in a stack, the best possible defender was always picked. In practice this meant that the optimum stack was 90% axemen/macemen/etc... Collateral damage was meant to stop this by hurting everything in stack. This failed because it only affected the first 5-15 units in the stack, which encouraged even more mega stacks. AND, it gave the advantage entirely to the attacked. Civ4 was the only Civ game I played MP a lot of; most of those games were trying to double-move stacks of axemen+catapults to attack first. Wasn't fun and certainly wasn't tactical. There were cases when different tactics were required but these are few and far between - primarily because it is impossible to change your army composition without rebuilding everything form scratch. The Nash equilibrium was simply catapults + axes, deviations from it were high risk and low reward.

    A better way of doing it IMO is to have stacks of limited size and the battle between two stacks is resolved holistically. That is, it is an entire army attacking another entire army, rather than a sequence of unit-unit combats. That allows for real tactics in stack composition and stack positioning. I'd argue that a limited number of stacks would improve things further. And if you want more player involvement in the "tactical" sides of war (we can argue if that is a good thing or not separately) then you can let the player assign permanent promotions and temporary tactics which affect the holistic stack-stack battle.
     
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