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Improving Naval Units

Discussion in 'Civ4 - General Discussions' started by cobains disease, Nov 6, 2006.

  1. cobains disease

    cobains disease Chieftain

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    Yeah I know this has been brought up before, but i have a few sugestions that may help.

    One thing is trade. For every overseas trade route there should be a trade ship representing the trade between the two cities. To avoid micromanageing commerce The trade ships would be automaticly/instantly built in the city. Their speed would be 3 in the age of sail, but get faster after the discovery of combustion. There would be enough for one trade route so that one would arrive in port per turn. Example: Hamburg is trading wth New York. New York is 3 spaces away, so there would be 1 trade ship. Hamburg also trades with St. Petersburg which is 6 spaces away, so there would be 2 trade ships. During wartime these ships could be pillaged accoring to whatever the value of that trade route is.
    In addition there should be pirates and privateer units added to the game. privateers could be used to attack a foreign civs trade while they are at peace. they would be cheap and fast ships. However you would only be able to control them for a short period of time before they begin to attack everybodys trade.


    More Naval Units should be added to the game. The man of War and the sloop for the age of sail, And The cruiser and nuclear submarine for the Industrial/modern periods.



    Sea resources should not have to be in a nations culture borders to be accesed.


    A civilation should be able to sell some of its excess food to other civs. This transaction could be represented in the same trade ships used for trade routes. This way a civ can attempt to starve another civ into submission, like the way germany did to great britain in WWII.



    Naval units should be able to bombard land improvements.
    Also they should be able to attack land units in a similiar way that fighters do.
     
  2. terentius

    terentius Fortes Fortuna Adiuvat

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    Sounds similar to the system used in Call to Power, where each civ's trade routes were overlaid across the map.

    I'd like to see an ability like the one used in Rise of Nations: let settlers auto-convert into a dug-out canoe to help colonise overseas without having to research ships first. Give them a really awful movement rate to compensate (say, 1 per turn).

    All sailing ships should have transport capability.

    Ironclads should be a USA special unit.

    Have the choice of upgrading a sailing ship to a destroyer or an ocean liner (not the tiny little Normandy landing transport! Leave that for the auto-convert ability).

    Other thoughts:

    Battleships->Missile Cruisers->Stealth Cruisers?

    Submarines->Missile Subs->Magneto-hydrodynamic 'Stealth' sub? (yeah, yeah, 'Red October'!)

    Ocean Liners->Carriers (aircraft/land units)
    Instead of a battleship's 'bombardment', Carriers have 'airstrike', which has longer range, but can be defended against by anti-air improvements. Carrier line-of-sight should be greater too.

    Let ships blockade ports (a the British Royal Navy did in the 18th/19th centuries).

    Let ships carry out a diplomatic function (eg turning barbarian islands into new cities, or at least trading with them).

    Allow ships to patrol trade routes (as in a 'convoy' system); one ship per resource traded (that's just my arbitary suggestion).

    Allow ships to travel up rivers (maybe give that ability to just a few nations?).

    New tiles: straights (allows land and sea units to cross, more easily representing Gibraltar, Bosporus, Malacca etc)

    Give water tiles a 'current' feature, to model the flow of ocean currents and trade winds (combine the two; modelling them separately may be too complex), giving a movement bonus to sailing ships that move in the same direction. Feature doesn't affect industrial-era vessels.

    New improvement: Canal (same ability as straights; think Panama, Suez etc; generates money).

    Units:

    Outriggers, Catamarans, Trimarans, Galleys, Caravels, Ships-of-the-Line,
    Dhows, Junks, Xebecs for different cultures?

    Waka war canoe (Polynesian/Maori special unit?)
    Longboat (Viking special unit?)
    Bireme/Trireme (Roman Special unit?)
    Dromon (Greek/Byzantine special unit?)
    Carrack (Portuguese special unit?)
    Galleon (Spanish special unit?)
    Galleas (Venetian special unit?)
    Fluyt (Dutch special unit?)
    Treasure Ship (Chinese special unit?)
    First-rater (English/British special unit?)
    Ironclad (USA special unit?)

    Wonders/Achievements:
    Great Lighthouse
    Zheng He's voyages
    Magellan's Voyages
    Captain Cook's Voyages
    Lief Eriksson
    Kon Tiki
    Dreadnought
    Undersea telegraph cables
    Coaling stations
    Greenwich meridian
    Naval academy
     
  3. cobains disease

    cobains disease Chieftain

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    i like the canal idea, civs could charge other civs for use of the canal. Or open borders agreements could be split into categorys: Open trade agreements, Right of Passage agreements, etc. If a civ owns a vital canal then they could charge added money if they want to open a "right of passage agreement"
     
  4. Tristan daCunha

    Tristan daCunha Pacifist Aggressive

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    If I remember correctly, both could be done in Civ3. I've found myself many times wishing to do either while playing Civ4.
     
  5. boneys26

    boneys26 BTS Play session tester

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    I like the idea's you have alot. if i could add one sea improvment it would be "mines" (ones that blow up) so you had some defence against them dam subs dropping spies off on your land without having to go to war to kill it off
     
  6. Julian Delphiki

    Julian Delphiki Anton's key

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    Why would Ironclad be USA special unit? Because they basically used it first on war? First (modern) Ironclad was developed by the French while Brits were quick to follow. Other nations had and used them too (Japan, Spain etc.).
     
  7. terentius

    terentius Fortes Fortuna Adiuvat

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    The French and Brit approach was to have ironclad sailing ships. The US Civil war introduced ships closer to what we would think of as modern warships, more fully protected by armour. That was my thinking, anyway.
     
  8. kristopherb

    kristopherb Protective/Charismatic

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    how about the koeran version(kombuston)or something
     
  9. terentius

    terentius Fortes Fortuna Adiuvat

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    Does anyone else think that Civ games (1-4) are too biased towards continental games? There's very little incentive to colonise overseas unless you run out of land on a continent. I'd like to see more in the way of British/Spanish/Portuguese/Dutch/Viking/Polynesian/Japanese colonisation of islands and overseas colonies...
     
  10. kettyo

    kettyo Seeker of Reality

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    But if i remember correctly the Civ3 AI was terribly unable to use field bombardment at all (but some shore defense by artillery) therefore i think programmers dropped the whole idea for Civ4.
    It could be too difficult for that level of AI to implement the field bombardment logics.
    I accept they left it out.

    The only possible solution may be to make sea units act like land units in terms of combat like in Civ1 where they can attack shore units directly just like a land attack (they would need heavy retread possibility then if implemented in Civ4).
    Though it may needed too much modification and balancing to do so.
     
  11. kettyo

    kettyo Seeker of Reality

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    The forbidden palace could be used for colonization.
    Though you'll need a whole lot of ships to mount a successful sea invasion on an adequately defended overseas civ.
    It's not worthless to do so i think also to get overseas vassals (cool)
     
  12. witten

    witten dot matrix cavalry

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    the canal idea sounds nice. also it could be a tile improvement(as well as city improvement), so that you don't have to always build a city on hotspot. automatic multi-turn paths of naval unit would be different according to whether i have contract with canal owner or not.
     
  13. cobains disease

    cobains disease Chieftain

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    I actually think that the continents maps dont even look realistic. When i play on continents the "continents look like square blobs with a little water in between; also the way the "distance from capital" maintenance cost are this sort of discourages overseas colonys by weak natons. Perhaps when a colony is created it could have a "viceroys mansion" to reduce costs. however this could only be on overseas terriory not linked culturaly to the capital.
     
  14. Thedrin

    Thedrin Deity

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    Alter the way city connectedness works. Currently two cities are connected if there is a road or river between them, they are both on the coast and have sailing, they both have astronomy or some combination of these elements. Keep thsese conditions and add a new one. Two cities are only connected if a link between them is not obscured by the fog of war. Assume that civs with open borders 'share' visible tiles - this does not mean that you will know everything going on in the lands of the civs you have an open borders agreement with - it means that the ability for your cities to be connected to other cities is affected by the tiles visible to said civs.

    Consequence: No overseas trade routes exist unless the civ stations 'protective' military ships along ocean routes between continents.

    Make a further change. The amount of commerce any trade route generates is proportional to the ratio of the shortest link between the two cities that you have access to and the shortest link between the two cities that exists. When the game engine calculates the distances allow it to treat ocean squares as being faster than coastal squares which are faster than roads and rivers. This new concept of distance does not change other distance concepts used in the game such as maintenance distance and [importantly] distance already used for calculating trade route incomes - these established distance values will remain the same.

    Consequences: The position of your ships used for generating income affects the amount of income generated. In war time there could be battles for military control of the best water ways. Cities built as canals can indirectly generate lots of revenue - building a city where the Suez canal is will give you access to lots more trade route commerce than stationing ships around Africa would.

    Add in two further ideas. The first is shipping plunder. Closing off a civs access route (by destroying a ship or ships) will give a large boost to your treasury, possibly proportional to the per turn commerce the other civ was making from the trade route. Add in privateer units (for various military vessels - triremes, frigates and submarines).

    Consequence: Piracy. There will be a double economic benefit to attacking shipping lanes - the one time gold boost for closing the route and the damage done to your opponents economy. Privateers can act like spies. You can damage an opponents shipping lanes without causing war (unless you get caught - a percentage chance should be included if a ship is defeated).

    Other notes:

    One shipping lane to each other large continent - a route across the ocean guarded by your ships (or the ships of a civ with which you have open borders) - can be very profitable. But further lanes may not be. Creating shipping lanes requires building military units, each of which will (usually) cost maintenance. A shipping lane will only be valuable so long as the commerce it generates is greater than the unit maintenance required to create it.

    In times of peace there is little to no micromanagement. A route is created by stationing ships. No further work need be done.

    For pangaea maps shipping lanes can still be useful since ocean squares can be treated as a shorter route than land squares.
     
  15. witten

    witten dot matrix cavalry

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    I also found continents maps artificial and unlike, even worse than in Civ3. Why don't you try "fractal" setting? It gives uneven distribution of land mass and some interesting connection and arrangement of continents or islands. I'm always playing in fractal map.
     
  16. cobains disease

    cobains disease Chieftain

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    This is an intersting way of doing it, but the only thing is that trade routes are being operated by milatary ships, which is not the true purpose of naval vessels. also the naval combat that would ensue would seem more of an individual ship on ship sort of thing (unless you would be willing to reserve a large portion of your economy for a super large navy).

    My idea is that trade routes would be operated the smae way they are now only they can be visibly pillaged. because trade would be more profitable and in need of more protection larger navys would need to be built for their protection. (See top of thread for details)
     
  17. Thedrin

    Thedrin Deity

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    I was under the impression that the most pressing reason for a navies existence was to protect foreign trade from the navies of other nations. In this idea overseas trade is not operated by military vessels, it is protected by military vessels. Trade would still take place automatically - you just need protection in place to allow the unseen merchant vessels to make their way in safety.

    It means less micromanagement which is a plus. 2 disadvantages:

    1) I run the game at lowest graphics-everything. I really don't want units that aren't being operated by a human or AI player taking up my computer's time, especially since large navies will also be needed on top of that for protection. My idea reduces the additional units to just the navies, no merchant marine units.

    2) You're advocating larger navies as a means of protecting trade, which is the same as my idea. But in your idea if you don't want to build a navy - meaning no overseas trade routes - you're allowing other civs to come in and take free plunder. In my idea other civs have to win naval supremacy to benefit from another civs overseas trade routes.
     
  18. Agarwaen

    Agarwaen King

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    ironclads were important in Brazil's navy in the War of the Triple Alliance (1864-70)
     
  19. cobains disease

    cobains disease Chieftain

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    What I meant by merchant vessels wasnt what you infered
    In my ideaTrade routes wouldnt be created by building merchant vessels.
    Instead trade routes would be represented by merchant vessels. The "merchant ships" would be built automaticaly when a trade route is established. The merchant ships wouldnt cost anyhthing in maintenence, really they are more like a moving improvement rather than a unit. (Kind of like if you zoom in on a city you can see the boats in the water tiles that the city is working).

    You also siad that in your idea you would have to have a navy in order to have overseas trade. This didnt happen in history. In the early part of its history the United states was big in trade but had a very small navy. Because of this other nations such as the barbary states, great britain, and france would bully America on the high seas. On top of that America didnt want a large navy nor could we afford it. In the end we ended up building one out of common sense.
     
  20. Thedrin

    Thedrin Deity

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    I know and took account of this.

    I will not go into the details of naval history since that will go off topic - the topic is how to improve the role of naval units in the game. While it's nice to have historical accuracy, not everything should have a historical implementation due to balance issues. In the case of your idea, not building a navy will put a civ at a double disadvantage - very little overseas trade (it will be plundered) and free gold/commerce for its opponenets. This seems to be unbalanced to me. What I've proposed - a deliberately rough approximation of what actually took place - only puts navyless civs at a single disadvantage and allows them to overcome it through diplomacy (open borders).
     

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