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History Rewritten (Original Thread)

Discussion in '[MAC+WIN] Civ4 - History Rewritten' started by Xyth, Feb 9, 2010.

  1. Howard Mahler

    Howard Mahler Since Civ 1

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    Quote:
    PHILOSOPHICAL: +100% GPP, double School, +2 culture/specialist
    TRADITIONAL: +5 happy Palace, +1 specialist/Wonder, +25% production for buildings in capital
    Quote:


    That looks bad to me.
    Philosophical is already strong enough.

    The +25% production bonus for buildings already in a capital comes from CivRev I think or is it Civ V.
    It is very strong, and scales up the bigger your empire. The bigger you get the more powerful it is.
    It is basically equivalent to organized religion, except you there is no requirement you have your state religion in each city, does not apply in your capital, does not require you to get the appropriate tech, etc.
    I would suggest it is almost strong enough to be a trait by itself.
     
  2. Xyth

    Xyth History Rewritten

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    That would work. It doesn't feel right though, it's one of the Great General promotions. Sorry but I still prefer to go with the passive movement boost for now.

    All the traits are being strengthened apart from those that were already the strongest: Expansive, Industrious, Humane. Philosophical does need a small boost to keep up; I'm willing to lower it to +1 culture per specialist though, just in case.

    It's from Civ5, the Roman's special ability. Mathematically it provides a smaller benefit than the Industrious trait already does so I think it will be okay. Easy to adjust the percentage if it's not. It is similar to Organized Religion but that affects Wonders (both World and National) and this trait won't.
     
  3. Azoth

    Azoth Inscrutable

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    And now for something completely different.
    I've mentioned a number of times that I'd like to update the civics in HR. But I've also said that the existing civics are very well balanced. So what am I playing at?

    Well, I'd like to update the default starting civics. Why? For three reasons:
    1. It would be more fun that way. When you look at the civics screen at the start of the game, you see six blank columns: the default civics do nothing, even though they soon start charging upkeep! That's just not very interesting. HR may have extra civic slots and an entirely new civics column, but the default civics represent one big missed opportunity.
    2. It would add flavour. Many societies were organized along tribal lines, with no formal religion, no standing army, and no codified laws for long periods of time. These systems should not be dismissed out of hand as irrelevant. As Simon Jester said, we should ask ourselves how we can use the civics to model different cultures at different points in their history.
    3. It would improve gameplay. I wanted the default civics to provide meaningful benefits whose impact would fade over the first 100 turns so that players would appreciate them but be prepared to switch at the earliest opportunity. So I looked for holes in the early game: spots where the game mechanics could be better. Despotism and Barbarism are still purely flavour civics but the rest are designed to fix minor early game issues.

    Here they are:

    Despotism
    Suggested: halved unhappiness duration from slaving and drafting
    Issue Fixed: None.
    Comments: Even Despotism should be good for something. I can't imagine many players choosing this over Monarchy, though it does leave open options other than a mad rush to Property. You could head to Masonry (Tactical leaders could switch to Conscription) and slave or draft units for a super early game rush. Later on, in the face of a massive invasion, your government could collapse to Despotism, the better to slave and draft multiple units on consecutive turns, hoping to avoid defeat at any cost.

    Barbarism
    Suggested: no unhappiness from civics
    Issue Fixed: None.
    Comments: The Visigoths who sacked Rome didn't care that they were attacking the Eternal City, the light of the Western World. They weren't paid to think thoughts like that. Barbarism would negate the unhappiness from Equal Rights and Emancipation. Once again, this civic would have few uses. If you spent the game conquering while another civilization progressed far into the tech tree, you could revert to Barbarism and continue pillaging. Still, this would be another mostly flavour option.

    Tribalism
    Suggested: free Sentry promotion on Recon, Mounted, and Naval units
    Issue Fixed: Scouts are a poor early build choice. Buying maps is preferable to exploration.
    Comments: Hurray, free Sentry promotions. But, seriously, Scouts are very weak at the moment. At Strength 1, they barely survive Lion attacks, and are routinely killed by Bears and Tigers. Once barbarian Warriors and Archers arrive, Scouts aren't worth the hammers it takes to build them. Free Sentry promotions won't make them any stronger, but it will help them avoid enemy units in the first place. And since you won't be staying in Tribalism for long, it just might make sense to build a Scout before your first Worker. (On a related note, map trading should probably be moved to later in the tech tree. Players should explore the map themselves instead of letting an AI do it for them. Having a complete, accurate map of your starting continent in 1000 BC is also a little strange.)

    Reciprocity
    Suggested: +2 gold from Palace
    Issue Fixed: Random events hit hard when you have one city and no gold.
    Comments: Reciprocity would slowly add gold to your treasury, which you could use to mitigate the effects of forest fires, slave revolts, or vermin in the granary early in the game. Think of it as a 3000 BC disaster relief fund. Once you settled your second city, the gold would be lost to maintenance costs. Until then, you would be somewhat protected from the worst of the random events.

    Militia
    Suggested: no unhappiness from empty garrison
    Issue Fixed: Barbarians must be engaged in the field to prevent pillaging.
    Comments: Oftentimes, you want to attack the barbarians roaming through your territory but your units can't leave a city because the people would "worry about their safety." That's what militias are for! Later in the game, you might have enough military to spare, but in the early years your units should be stationed where they would do the most good: at the borders, at critical improvements, and alongside workers.

    Paganism
    Suggested: no health penalty from jungles and flood plains
    Issue Fixed: Some starting points are buried in jungles or floodplains.
    Comments: Every once in a while, your capital city will be unhealthy at size 2 because of surrounding jungles or flood plains. Earth maps are especially bad: civilizations in tropical climates (Aztec, Maya, Mali, Tamil, Khmer, Thai, etc.) often can't grow at all. These empires can rely on Paganism until they get some resources connected.
     
  4. Keinpferd

    Keinpferd King

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    On top of the list cavalry, cuirassiers and grenadiers. If a "Russian" player goes straight for Military Science, I believe, neglecting other Techs, an early 19th century Russian cuirassier will be riding along late medieval troops, while the default European cuirassier art is more like the early, let's say, 16th century cuirassier and the dissonance easier to bear. – Or the German grenadier's unit art is mid to late 19th century, but can be available long before, looking especially anachronistic. But as I said, on Normal speed, you have inevitably troops from all kinds of ages at the same time. If the unit art would magically update itself (Civ in the year 2025), in relation to the research points you've invested towards the next military Tech, I'd be happy with that…

    In HR, I could imagine one layer between Baroque musketmen and Victorian-Industrial riflemen with Napoleonic looks. But I'm not sure, if this will also add to gameplay. There should be an ability other than one strength point less ore more. Maybe a line infantry that can shoot ranged volleys, Hussards that ignore terrain costs like horse archers, and some in-between-stage of cannon, better than bombard but not as powerful as the cannon as is now… Just a thought, and actually only making sense for Epic or Marathon speed.

    Ranged weapons: Once, the AI attacked and knew how to use ranged weapons. In the second case, though, I attacked, and the AI withdrew all their ranged weapons from the city under attack to keep them safe in the next secure city. Is it possible, that the AI values their bombards wrongly, especially when defending (and not getting the idea of reducing the incoming stack)? My armies have seen only two wars so far, so, if anyone has noticed the same…
     
  5. architekton

    architekton Chieftain

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    Well, I've finally managed to play a few "half games", generally calling it quits at around 1850. It's a very tough mod to play compared to vanilla BtS, even at Warlord level, unless I'm doing something very wrong (quite possible!). For example, I have yet to see galleons appear before the early 1800s in any of the games played - even the AI civs didn't have any. This seems a bit odd, to say the least.

    The other problem I'm encountering is the tech tree - basically, it seems as if you have to pretty much research everything on "the left" in order to reach a specific tech since everything is completely interrelated. In the basic game you seem to be able to skip over some of the more minor techs if you need to reach a specific tech rather quickly.

    Last remark - can someone explain how religions are being founded by the AI civs after only a few dozen turns? At least, that's what it subjectively seems like! I'm going to have to make a note of when the first one appears and see.

    (I'm enjoying the experience so don't worry on that score!)
     
  6. Xyth

    Xyth History Rewritten

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    I'd like to make the starting civics interesting as well. However, the big problem is that there is much less flexibility when designing civics compared to traits. With traits the AI doesn't need to know about the bonuses, they just receive them and adjust their strategy accordingly. But with civics the AI needs to calculate the value of the bonuses and make a decision when to switch into or out of a civic.

    With only one exception (the upgrade discount of Conscription), all the civics in HR use only the standard BTS array of possible bonuses. The AI is coded to recognize and evaluate these but it cannot do this with anything extra that I might add via python scripting. In some cases it is possible to write code that helps the AI deal with these new additions (this is used for Inquisition AI for example) but the caveat is that doing so is not easy to write and can slow down turn times dramatically. It works for Inquisitions because inquisitions only happen occasionally and aren't part of the AI's main decision making process. Civics however, are evaluated several times every turn, for every AI player. All your suggestions would require considerable scripting (some beyond my skill).

    However, as these are starting civics it's possible that bonuses could be added without the AI needing to understand them. The issue with this is that the AI would never choose to switch back to these traits even if it was the best option because as far as the AI decision making is concerned these civics appear to have no bonuses at all. The player thus gets an advantage over the AI unless the 'invisible' bonuses are small enough to never be better than any civic in the category.

    The alternative of course is to give these civics standardly available options - basically make them variations of bonuses that other civics already have. Anyway, it's a good concept and I'm willing to discuss it further after 0.9.4 is done.

    Until Realism Invictus came along, Cuirassier and Grenadier art were the hardest to find for most civs. That's why there's such a wide array of different eras for these units in HR. I can possibly address that to a certain degree with some of the RI art.

    Ultimately though I'm not aiming for strict accuracy like RI does (they can only achieve it by effectively having most units as UUs), I instead focus more on theme. In other words, I'll choose unit art that is a century or two 'out' if it's better quality and/or has complementary appearance to other units in its grouping. Grenadier and Cannon art sometimes end up in the wrong grouping due to limited availability.

    It's been a fair while since I've reviewed unit art for most civs so hopefully I can make a start on that process in 0.9.5. I'll see what I can do about tech requirements too.

    That would be cool but finding such units for non-European civs would be a daunting/impossible task and that's a factor I don't wish to dismiss.

    Ranged combat needs a lot of work, there are quite a few problems with it. I'd hoped to address it in 0.9.4 but its looking more and more like a task for 0.9.5 now.

    That does sound a bit odd on Warlord difficulty. What mapsize and gamespeed are you playing?

    Yep, I've deliberately cut down on the amount of 'beelining' you can do when researching techs, at least across eras. One thing to note is that I've had Tech Brokering switched off by default for a long time now but this isn't necessary since the new tech tree was introduced. I'll be changing this in 0.9.4 but in the meantime you may want to switch it back on yourself (it's one of the Custom Game options) if you feel research is moving too slowly in your games.

    Civs that begin with Ritual are able to build Cemeteries straight away and on top of this Spiritual leaders can build them twice as fast as other leaders. There is also a 'quirk' in 0.9.3 that causes almost all AI civs to place a Priest specialist before doing much else. In 0.9.4 certain civs/leaders will still be able to found a religion noticeably faster than others but there will be a lot more variety of specialist placement meaning that many won't strive to found a religion until later.

    I'm glad you're enjoying it and please don't hesitate to let me know about any further suggestions or questions you may have :)
     
  7. Xyth

    Xyth History Rewritten

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    I'm currently working on coding and testing all the new trait features which will probably take a few days. While I'm doing that I'd welcome some suggestions for existing leaders to go Traditional. My interpretation of the trait is that, thematically, it's kind of a hybrid between Creative and Protective: preserving one's way of life, honoring the past and encouraging uniformity.

    At this stage I'll probably only change 2-4 leaders so that I can make more considered shuffles when/if I add new leaders later. Let me know if you think there are any obvious candidates.
     
  8. architekton

    architekton Chieftain

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    Epic, huge.

    You wrote:
    Somebody else wrote:
    These two statements seem at odds with each other. Is Keinpferd talking about something not yet implemented?

    Thanks for the clarification re religions - I'm going to have to rethink a couple of earlier strategy ideas!
     
  9. Xyth

    Xyth History Rewritten

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    He's commenting on my choice of unit art. In this case I've apparently used a 19th century style cuirassier for the Russians but the cuirassier unit in HR becomes available in the Renaissance.

    That part of the tree (top 2 rows, Renaissance through Industrial) does need to be improved though.
     
  10. Cadbro

    Cadbro Chieftain

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    Ummmm... just a few things:
    1. When I want resources from people, quite often they suggest a trade where they just give it to me... is that meant to happen?
    2. The Polynesian UU seems a bit unfair to me- if the polynesians can go out finding the world is round and colonising everywhere, everyone else is at a disadvantage.
    3. The Caravel appears with cannon before gunpowder and generally really early. It doesn't really fit with flavour and I think it appears a little early in game terms.
     
  11. Xyth

    Xyth History Rewritten

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    No, it's a bug in 0.9.3. I didn't realize that the AI relied on the happiness or health a resource gives to determine their category. This will be fixed in 0.9.4 which will hopefully be finished in about a week.

    I have these issues on my todo list, though I don't have any finalized solutions yet. I had originally planned to introduce a 3rd type of ocean terrain (Coast, Ocean, Deep Ocean) but this didn't work out. That's why some of these units are placed where they are. The waka was going to be able to cross Ocean but not Deep Ocean for example.

    One idea I'm toying with is splitting the Caravel role into two different units: a classical version and a medieval version. I definitely want the Caravel to be available before gunpowder so I hope at the very least to change its combat animations to arrows and possibly rename it.

    I'm probably not going to get enough time to address this properly in 0.9.4 but the Navigation tech (which unlocks the Caravel) will take noticeably longer to get due to Shipbuilding also requiring Construction, and Astronomy also requiring Mathematics. I'll add these issues to my priority list for 0.9.5 though, thanks for the reminder and feedback.
     
  12. Azoth

    Azoth Inscrutable

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    Though I didn't propose them with the AI in mind, I feel like my suggestions for the starting civics qualify as "small enough to never be better than any [other] civic in the category." In fact, some of them would literally provide no benefit to the AI: the AI always garrisons its cities, so it would never need the Milita bonus; and on the higher difficulty levels, the AI starts with extra scouts, so the free Sentry promotion from Tribalism would be unnecessary. Paganism is probably the only civic for which extra code would be useful; the AI would be at no disadvantage if it ignored the other starting civics. In any case, I'm happy to discuss this in more detail later.

    After a brief survey of the current leader list, my top picks are Gilgamesh, Djoser, Montezuma, and Boudicca. The first two are not well suited to the Progressive trait; as monument builders and champions of dynasties, Traditional seems a better fit. The second two are likewise best described as Traditional instead of Spiritual; in resisting foreign domination, they were defending traditional ways of life as opposed to specific spiritual beliefs or ideologies. Since Gilgamesh and Boudicca cannot both be Protective/Traditional, I would assign Boudicca Charismatic/Traditional.
    Will you be accepting requests for new leaders or civilizations?
     
  13. Xyth

    Xyth History Rewritten

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    Yep, once 0.9.4 is out please feel free to bring the topic up again. Implementing the traits are going slower than I hoped, I hit a tricky technical problem with a few of them. I am currently asking some experts for advice on how to solve it.

    Progressive used to be all about scientific advancement but now that it's added the government aspect I agree that some of those choices no longer work. Traditional makes a good alternative for both Spiritual and Creative in some cases I think. Thanks for these suggestions.

    Possibly. It depends primarily on what artwork is available for units and leaders though I also have some criteria about the type of civ that would fit in. At this stage I'm not sure when I might start adding new civs or leaders but let me know what you'd like to see.
     
  14. Cem

    Cem Chieftain

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    I've just downloaded the mod on my mac. When i try to load the mod i get an error message

    "GFC Error: failed to initialize the primary control theme"

    And then the game crashes as soon as I click OK.

    Any help would be great!

    Edit: Never mind I've seen your post to the same question on pg 37 of this thread.
     
  15. Simon_Jester

    Simon_Jester Prince

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    On Caravels, I'd vote for leaving the non-gunpowder Caravel unit named "Caravel," since historically they were entering development very early in the gunpowder era, and were too small to mount significant cannon in any case (about 20 meters long, for a typical example like the Niña).

    Incidentally, their lack of carrying capacity is also the reason justifying their lack of unit transport ability.

    The gunpowder-equipped version of the caravel you mention, Xyth... what, exactly, would its capabilities and uses be? There's not much point in introducing dedicated ocean-going warships until you get to the heavy Age of Sail warships, the galleon and the frigate.

    You might want to dispense with that unit concept entirely. Though I'd like to hear an explanation of what it would be for, exactly...
     
  16. Xyth

    Xyth History Rewritten

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    Actually it would be two pre-gunpowder units: one which is basically the current Caravel and one which is available earlier.

    You might want to dispense with that unit concept entirely. Though I'd like to hear an explanation of what it would be for, exactly...[/QUOTE]

    It all started with the concept of having 3 ocean types: Coast, Ocean and Deep Ocean. One would be able to traverse Coast and Ocean and the other could traverse Deep Ocean too. That never became anything more than a concept though (due to technical challenges) and there are no solid details whatsoever. I may have another look at the idea in 0.9.5 and decide whether I want to try it again or scrap it completely.
     
  17. ripple01

    ripple01 Emperor

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    A suggestion to balance the Polynesians would be to have the UU have a %chance to sink in Ocean water, similar to Civ3. Probably wouldn't be too hard to code in Python.
     
  18. Simon_Jester

    Simon_Jester Prince

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    Yes, but you might run into the same problem of the AI stupidly sinking their ships without good reason. The ship has a risk of sinking, but the AI doesn't know that.

    I'm not sure I like the three-tier ocean thing. Depending on the specific choice of map, having ships that can sail "ocean but not deep ocean" can be either very very helpful (archipelago maps, where clusters of islands may be connected by narrow channels of ocean) or completely useless (continental maps, where every continent is separated from every other by 10-20 squares of sea), so all being able to sail on "ocean" squares gets you is the ability to sail slightly farther out from the shoreline and see a few more squares of featureless, impassable ocean than you would otherwise.

    Assuming the concept isn't implemented in the near future (and there'd probably be a fair amount of effort going into the map generator to make it work)... I'm not sure I understand your proposal, Xyth. At the moment, for 'pre-gunpowder' ships we have:

    -Galley (S2, carries 2, coastal)
    -Trireme (S2, carries 0, +50% vs galleys, coastal)
    -Caravel (S3, carries 0, oceanic)*
    -Galleass (S4, coastal)**

    *Yes, I know, caravels can carry spies, bear with me
    **OK, Galleasses are, I think, gunpowder dependent, but in an important sense they're part of the 'early' navy that's dominated by coastal ship classes, as opposed to the Galleon/Frigate period in which your navy becomes dominated by units with oceanic range.

    What, exactly, do you want to change this to? What role would the new ship class fill? Where's the valuable niche for an intercontinental oceanic explorer ship other than the caravel? What historical type of ship does it correspond to?

    Bear in mind that before the Ming treasure fleets and the European Age of Sail, virtually all seriously powerful warships were coastal galley-type units. There's no logical niche for a powerful oceanic ship prior to galleons/frigates; arguably caravels should be no stronger than galleys or triremes in combat.
     
  19. Xyth

    Xyth History Rewritten

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    This is indeed the problem with implementing a sinking risk. I don't believe I could code the AI to understand this without the SDK.

    The idea was that deep ocean would be used to define 'old worlds' and 'new worlds'. Normal ocean would be used everywhere else as usual.

    It's not a proposal, it's just an old idea that didn't work then and probably won't now either. It did lead to a couple design choices such as the Waka that I've neglected to adjust since though. When I go to fix these I'll reconsider the concept but there are probably plenty of other options that are more elegant.

    No idea, I haven't really given it any serious thought for months.

    There are a lot of historical ships that aren't Galley-like but have been around a lot longer than the Caravel. Dhow and Junk for example. I agree that there probably isn't an immediately obvious role for a new ship class but it irks me that the Caravel class is the 'catch-all' for well over a millenium of ship design. It's more about that than whether it can cross oceans or not.

    So yeah, no plan of any sort yet other than a desire to eventually do something about it.
     
  20. Simon_Jester

    Simon_Jester Prince

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    Well, most of those ship classes were basically 'coastal;' few societies developed the navigation techniques for long oceanic voyages in sailing ships.

    You might create an early dedicated 'sail transport' unit, appearing some time in the late classical or early medieval era. Say... Strength 1 Speed 3, carries two units? I advocate the low strength because galleys and other oared ships did dominate naval warfare right up into and through the beginning of the gunpowder era, almost everywhere naval wars were fought. The new unit would outperform the galley in speed, and that +1 speed would be a significant bonus for many roles, but it would be vulnerable in a fight.

    Then again, you might just plan make the 'sail transport' (whatever you want to call it) a Strength 2 Speed 3 coastal unit that carries two units, and have it effectively replace the galley- though in that case I'd recommend having either the galleass become available simultaneously, or extending the trireme's bonus to affect the new ship.

    Thing is, it doesn't make a lot of sense to make the ship able to cross deep ocean, because the ability to do that hinged on techniques few civilizations truly mastered. Sea voyages were preferentially coastal for a long time, throughout most of the world, as far as I know; the exceptional civilizations might better be given an "early caravel" as a unique unit or something.
     

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