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Imperialism With Lua

Discussion in 'Civ2 - Scenario League' started by Prof. Garfield, Nov 10, 2018.

  1. Broken_Erika

    Broken_Erika Nothing

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    Maybe some Jeune École (“Young school”) naval units/techs?(actually doable w/torpedo and naval shell units thanks to Lua)
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jeune_École

    i.e. torpedo cruisers and various small naval units with low health(compared to armored cruisers and pre-dreadnoughts) that can fire nav.shells and torpedos.
    Not to mention that torpedo boats can actually be useful thus making destroyers useful.
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2019
  2. Prof. Garfield

    Prof. Garfield Chieftain Supporter

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    While it may be necessary to revise all combat in Imperialism, I think it will be particularly important to revise amphibious warfare.

    In the current game, marines are way too powerful. Since they ignore walls, they are often the best unit to make an attack (unless you have heavy artillery), and they can be brought in and withdrawn by ship. This means that coastal towns are very vulnerable to an attack by powerful units which, if they survive, can be easily taken away from the combat zone. Amphibious units should either be weaker than other units, be much more expensive, or limited in the number that are made available. They should probably also have their ignore walls ability removed, and the building of walls on 1 square islands disabled.

    Battleships are also very powerful against land units, and can usually defeat one or two even against a coastal fortress, so they function as very mobile artillery. For particularly tough enemies, soften them up with marines, to minimize the chance that the expensive battleship will be killed. Cruisers have the same balance issue, but to a lesser degree. They are also extremely good at picking off lots of weakened units that would otherwise require several ground still in place to defeat. You can have a situation where, say, 6 defenders defeat 6 of 7 attacking ground units (which should save the city for a turn), but a warship is brought in to defeat all the weakened units and allow the 7th ground unit to take the city.

    There are a couple options that I see. First is to significantly reduce the combat values of ships so that they can fight each other, but ground units don't risk very much. The second is to limit the number of attacks a warship can make in a turn, so it can't simply wipe out half a dozen weak defenders. Third is, with lua, to give an attack bonus to other units with the warship, rather than have the warship itself make the attack. Old school Colonization has a "bombard" bonus against cities during the war of independence if a Man of War is near a city being assaulted.
     
  3. McMonkey

    McMonkey ----Evertonian---- SLeague Staff

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    I was musing about ways to keep the game in balance. This is a proto-idea that will need a lot of developing. Basically, there would be a load of cities created, possibly on a second map, which would house some of the important wonders of the world. These could then be swapped between players depending on certain criteria using Lua.

    For example, Sun Tzu would be given to the weakest military nation (in terms of unit totals) if Lua can check all Civs totals & trigger an event to change ownership of the city. I have no idea if this is possible.

    Other wonders that could be useful are Pyramids for the smallest population Civ, Hoover Dam, Adam Smiths, SETI etc...

    The idea being that the weakest nations are organically boosted up to allow them to keep pace with the stronger nations.
     
  4. McMonkey

    McMonkey ----Evertonian---- SLeague Staff

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    Removing the ability to incrementally rush build would be ideal as this can be the most time-consuming aspect of the game alongside moving merchant shipping. This would result in less units overall and increase the importance of building up industry.

    Another idea would be for colonial cities to produce raw material units once certain improvements are in place. These would then need to be shipped back to industrialised cities to help boost production. This would make fighting over colonial possessions more important and may encourage more bush wars as the game goes along.

    I think some kind of war penalty in terms of cash would be a good idea. This would put a time limit on how long nations could engage in a bush war before one or both sides have to quit & build up their reserves again.
     
  5. Prof. Garfield

    Prof. Garfield Chieftain Supporter

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    That's a good idea. I'm pretty sure we can just move wonders around using lua (wonder.city can bet set) rather than changing ownership of some extra cities. It is also fairly easy to count up the units of each civ, and not too much work to differentiate between military and non-military units (at the worst case, we have to specify if military or not in a table).

    There could be a slight problem in that a lot of wonders are more valuable for large civs than for small ones, but "catch up" mechanics are something to think carefully about. I was thinking something along the lines of schools and universities have a chance each turn of giving a technology that is owned by another civ, with increased probability if more civs own it. Perhaps weight the probability based on the total number of cities, so small civs with lots of educational infrastructure can catch up, while larger civs that have more schools total, but less schools as a percentage, don't get as much of a bonus.

    Or, since we can play around with production availability, maybe cities with universities can build things requiring technologies that the civ doesn't currently have, as long as someone else has the technology.

    I only discovered this recently, but you can use keyboard shortcuts 'c' and 'b' in a city to change and buy production (and the arrow keys to cycle between cities). The point still stands, however. One thing that would do is make a building bonus that put a few shields in the box after production quite valuable, since you can't just rush a cheap building and then switch to the actually desired object.

    I was thinking of a system where most units would use up supplies while engaged in combat, and would disappear after engaging in a battle without supplies on square (or, maybe, have some lesser penalty than complete annihilation). This might be logistically intensive, but it would limit the size of armies away from industrial centres (I think it is true that armies were much smaller in the colonies). And in a truly massive war, it would strain the economy even more.
     
  6. Prof. Garfield

    Prof. Garfield Chieftain Supporter

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    I'm thinking it might make sense to start the game in 1884, just after the Berlin Conference, and go on to about 1920. Much of Africa wasn't really conquered until then anyway.

    At 6 month turns, this would be about 72 turns, at 8 month turns, this would be about 54, which is a much more realistic length to expect a PBEM to last. With turns lasting less than a year, there can be seasons (assuming my seasons in lua idea will work by shifting everything between maps). 8 month turns would give a "winter" turn every third turn, so seasons wouldn't exactly line up with years, but I don't think that would be a huge issue. This would also match the time it took for most of the world to be conquered in the current Imperialism game.

    Having "winter" every few turns could add some strategic depth. For one thing, we could block some of the northern ports with ice, putting pressure on Russia to get warm water ports.

    With turns representing 8 months, the 1 turn mobilization rule might not make much sense. However, without it, sneak attacks are too powerful. My idea is to have a literal mobilization system. A country's military force is in two forms: the "active" military and the "reserves." The active military are the units always available, and in the event of war, these can be attacked with right away. Mobilizing brings up the reserves, who either can't attack on the turn they are mobilized, or can't be moved at all. Being mobilized will have some sort of penalty so that you don't just stay mobilized all the time.

    Each player will have mobilization options, which will include mobilizing at the same time another country does. So, if Germany wants to attack France, it can do so immediately with its active forces, but France will defend with both active forces and reserves, assuming that France's mobilization options include mobilizing whenever Germany does so.

    For the case where Germany attacks with active forces without mobilizing reserves, we simply say that if a French city with a "reservist muster point" is attacked, the reserves are called up for free, or something similar. Colonies wouldn't have such "muster points" so colonial skirmishes could still happen.
     
  7. JPetroski

    JPetroski Chieftain

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    For mobilization, why not use a 2nd map, similar to what @tootall_2012 did in Napoleon? Here's how I'd envision it to work:

    -units cost 3x as much as now;
    -building a unit creates 2 other units on a "reserves" map, but these can't reach a transport site as the path is blocked somehow.
    -On the main map, a key press brings up a dialogue box which asks "shall we mobilize our forces?" Selecting "yes" unblock the path on the reserves map and units can move towards their muster point.
    -All other players (or perhaps ones with a certain tech or spy level) get a warning that the first player has mobilized. They too can choose to do this, or can simply launch an attack to try and capture the muster points before the first player can call his reserves.
    -Each turn, the units on the main map are counted and have a cost associated with them. Leaving the majority of your forces on the main map thus is expensive.
    -Any unit can be "demobilized" with a key press/dialogue box. Depending on where it is in the world, it teleports to the beginning of a path on the reserve map.
     
  8. Prof. Garfield

    Prof. Garfield Chieftain Supporter

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    Well, an 8 month per turn system has 3 seasons (northern hemisphere winter, southern hemisphere winter, and spring/fall), so one map per season still leaves a fourth map to be used. So, a "reserves" map is possible.

    I'm not sure why a reserves map is preferable to just creating units at the time of mobilization (and maybe reducing city population to account for workers away from the economy), and storing the relevant information in a table (and make it available in a report). I suppose it would include the total army size in the units count, which could be useful, and will also let us know if we're running up on the maximum number of units before the war turn actually happens.

    Disrupting or preempting a mobilization seems much more in line with World War II than World War I. My (possibly mistaken) understanding of WWI mobilization was that once someone started mobilizing, everyone had to quickly follow suit to avoid a situation where one side had a huge mobilized army and the other side didn't, but that mobilization (and movement) wasn't so quick as to give a decisive advantage to the side that mobilized first. Hence, I would argue that once one power chooses to mobilize, its neighbours should automatically be mobilized, too. That can be done just as easily with a "reserves map" as with direct unit creation, so the choice doesn't matter too much there.

    I would be hesitant to allow too much of the army to be demobilized. To have an effective reservist system, young men have to spend some in the military before they become reservists. To implement this in Civ II without too much difficulty, there could be a maximum ratio of reservists to active units. If there are too few active units, reservists gradually disappear.

    A player could choose the typical length of service in his army, for simplicity either "short" or "long". If military service is for a short period of time, each active unit can "support" more reservists, but units will have veteran status removed (since the experienced troops don't stay in the army for very long). Long service policy allows active units to gain and retain veteran status, but allows for fewer reservists. "Elite" and "specialist" unit types might always be considered long service, giving some granularity to the system. Colonial units might not support any reservists at all, but be long service.

    If a player (e.g. United States) has the population for a large army, but an insignificant reservist system, they will be delayed in getting their army to the field, but a mobilization will make that delay smaller than it otherwise would be.
     
  9. JPetroski

    JPetroski Chieftain

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    I don't understand why you would use a different map per season?
     
  10. Prof. Garfield

    Prof. Garfield Chieftain Supporter

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    I propose that idea here:

    https://forums.civfanatics.com/threads/lua-scripting-possibilities.627220/page-9#post-15234033

    The basic idea is that the terrain values (production, defence bonus, move cost) can't be changed via event, but these things can be different on different maps. Hence, just move all units, cities, etc. to a different map for a different season. A few relatively simple for loops should take care of most of the work.

    For a world map, it might make sense to simply change the terrain on the map to reflect winter versus summer. However, rivers are sometimes (but not always, based on some stuff I did for another project--I didn't investigate the issue) removed when changing terrain type, so it might not be possible to do that.
     
  11. Patine

    Patine Warlord

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    I must admit that all these different proposed maps and their planned purposes sounds superfluous and mechanically distracting to me in a scenario like Imperialism II.
     
  12. Prof. Garfield

    Prof. Garfield Chieftain Supporter

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    My seasons scheme, if it works as I expect it to, will, at any given time, have everything on a single map (units, cities, etc.) and the game will have two other completely empty maps. Since an active unit will bring you to the correct map, it should be pretty seamless to the player. The other two maps would simply give you an easy way to see what the terrain will look like after a season change.

    It may be that seasons really shouldn't be a part of Imperialism, and there are probably good arguments for that. The advantage I immediately see to seasons is that wars get slowed down every couple turns, and cold water ports are less useful. I suppose these ideas mostly modify the Russian situation.

    A reservists map might be a little distracting. A simple solution is simply to have the reservists stationed in the city, but with 0 attack, 0 movement until a mobilization is conducted.
     

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