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Initial thoughts

Discussion in 'Civ6 - General Discussions' started by cakes, Oct 20, 2016.

  1. PhilBowles

    PhilBowles Deity

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    Neither amenities nor housing is new - amenities is the same happiness system as Civ V, only the penalty for settling new cities and adverse empire-wide effects from overall unhappiness are gone (though it's shown at a local level, in essence happiness is still global - luxuries offset happiness 'points' until they're used up, rather than being restricted to a particular city). Housing is a straight import of the Civ IV health system.

    Right now my experience is that the game looks deep at a superficial level because it has a lot of options and there's something to do management-wise in most turns. But nearing the end of my first full playthrough I can't escape the feeling that you can more or less random-walk your way through and only settle on a strategy fairly late and still be successful at least up to Emperor. There's potential for depth here, but you can't really call the game deep if there are many options but you can win without a particular game plan.

    The game still gives a very solid framework to build on.
     
    Roald Amundsen, Jeckel and ThERat like this.
  2. LDiCesare

    LDiCesare Deity

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    Yes, it's useful but:
    1/ It has no icon and is not placed near the other info screens.
    2/ It has no keyboard shortcut!
    3/ Its expand/collapse options are silly. I want to see at a glance which of my 20 cities produces the most XXX. I can't because it gives details I don't need and I can't get the intermediate collapse level (you have civ or building but not city info).

    What's also painful is the way they show the Score window for instance:
    You have say 8 civs. Each of them has about 8 figures to show. That's 64 figures. Each is shown on a line and that doesn't fit the screen, so you scroll and can't compare things.
    If they had used an array instead of a list, we'd get a spreadsheet where everything would be clear at first glance. Just WHY didn't they do it?
    I think the interface issues link to the inability to zoom out: Everything is fine when you're playing the details, but if you want to have a view of your empire, the tools are bad.Which makes me think they never played the game as empire builders and explains why they came up with a piss poor ai too, as they don't seem to have any goalor know what they should be doing, and they make it hard on the player too through the ui.
     
  3. narmox

    narmox Emperor

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    Yes, this is a common trend in the whole interface. A lot of the info (a lot, not all, not most) that we are used to seeing is there, somewhere, but clunkier, less intuitive, not sortable, etc.
     
  4. Plus Ultra

    Plus Ultra Conquistador

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    Loving the game. Plenty of UI and balance issues, yes, some of them pretty severe, but even in its current state, a contender for best in the series.
     
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  5. glg

    glg Chieftain

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    Ok Finally decided to give this game another go today, and I feel really disappointed. The game progresses fine and the opening turns are nice even though most of the choices are obvious no brainers like why would i choose a policy that boosts my reckon units when the game is swarming with barbs? Then the problems start to emerge. All the leaders hate me for unknown reasons, even Saladdin which who i have minor negatives and huge pluses (also for unknown reasons btw) over many turns, his happy-meter does not improve an inch. I guess this is another bug. Civs declare war on me east and west but none are sending any troops at all and giving me really handsome peace negotiations and I'm not even threatening them at all. Down comes America at last with an army containing lots of units, but his moves are so pathetic and unmotivated that i manage to hold him back with just an archer, a spearman and city bombarment. Then after a few turns Peter declares war on me (BUT HEY WAIT...... I'M PETER!! I'M PLAYING RUSSIA! I'M DECLARING WAR ON MYSELF NOW????!??) no wait a second, it's just a picture of Peter they mixed it up, so who is declaring anyway? ROME!?!?!? ROME IS NOT EVEN IN THE GAME!!! So Rome, a civ i have not met declares war on me disguised as myself. I give up. Exits to DOS.

    So my initial thoughts are this: Why can't Firaxis be honest enough to tell their consumers that they are paying to be beta testers? I know it sounds like a brilliant business idea, to beta test the game for another year and release a polished game would mean loosing money i guess. I have better things to do with my life than being a beta tester for firaxis. Civ is a looooong game, and to play for 4-5-6 hours only to find the game is broken is NOT my kind of fun. Back in the days we got expansions to enhance games. Nowadays people seem fine with getting and paying for expansions that try to fix broken ones. I think this is a really bad trend. So Firaxis: Shame on you for not being honest about the state this game is in. You have wasted mine and a lot of peoples time with this. Next time be honest and release the game for what it is, a Beta version you have to pay to fix and help out finding the bugs.
     
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2016
    f1rpo likes this.
  6. stormtrooper412

    stormtrooper412 Peacemongering Turtlesaur

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    I have to say I'm not impressed. Incoherent mess inbound:

    1. The drop down improvement is silly. Having expendable builders insta build them is an interesting idea. It will also decrease the infamous "worker steal" strategy from civ5. But the animation is silly. Very silly.

    2. Warfare at least on Emperor is EZ because Archers and XBs are still quite OP and they can shred anything. City defenses are a minor setback, that's where you bring in the heavy hitters, a single Catapult with 2-3 Archers can tear down walls in 2 turns tops. Melee unit pillage seems random now, sometimes they heal, sometimes it's faith and sometimes culture they get, which is a BIG difference maker. The new promotion system is interesting, you have to be careful about how you promote units, although it would help if I knew the total XP and how much they need for new ones.

    3. With the build times sometimes quite goofy, it's definitely easier to make dirt cheap units and upgrade them once you hit the tech, preferably with the 50% discount, making early game warfare a much better option than setting additional cities. May not work on Immortal/Deity, but I'm yet to see it. That would also suggest your using international trade for speeding up stuff you don't really have. I think gold is definitely king in this game. Produce stuff cheaply, then upgrade it.

    4. Great people having different abilities is a good thing, I find it really fun. I haven't used all of them yet but obviously some will end up being much more useful than others.

    now on to the really bad bits:

    5. Diplomacy is non-existent. Everyone hates everyone and it's a big mess. Surprise wars are much more likely to happen than formal wars. Therefore Warmonger penalty isn't a factor since everyone hates everyone regardless. Luxuries go from "open borders" to 8gpt, depending on I don't know, probably relationship and the need for that particular thing.

    6. First 100 turns of every standard speed game seem to always be the same: bee line political philosophy, currency and apprentices and only then can your cities start to look like something. But even then you kind of have to plan it ahead.

    7. Over half of civics are relatively useless, I have unlocked my first Government and I don't think I've changed civics until I unlocked Monarchy which was waaaaay later. I set up my civics and didn't bother to change them.

    8. AI is completely weird. I was attacked by Teddy with a swarm of Horsemen (and ONLY Horsemen) which then proceeded to passively shuffle around my tiles while my ranged units picked them off from inside the walls. I suppose on Deity stuff will get hectic with the sheer amount of units you would need to be able to defend against.

    9. Leaders on blank backgrounds are absolutely stupid, it breaks the immersion and even though the (cartoony) art isn't THAT bad, I definitely feel it's a step back from 5.

    I'm likely to discover a lot more weird stuff as I play along
     
    DocRock likes this.
  7. LDiCesare

    LDiCesare Deity

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    Most civics are indeed worthless. I finished the game spamming globalisationwhile having around 10 other options available because none of them had anything going for it.
     
  8. Raider

    Raider Warlord

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    And reading this thread, it should be clear why it's a bad idea either pre-order or buy these games on release. Learned my lesson with Civ 5 vanilla, was very cautious with this Civ and requested refund before hitting the 2 hours played mark. Not wasting time or money on unfinished product.
     
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  9. ComradeDavo

    ComradeDavo Formerly God

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    I do generally really like the game however:

    - the AI needs to upgrade it's units
    - the AI needs to fight wars better...i.e. be more aggressive in attacking cities and pillaging improvements
    - player progression through tech needs to be slower....particularly industrial era and later techs should cost a lot more and have more requirements in terms of previous techs researched (I think it's way to easy to get Industrialization, for example)

    Fix these 3 things and i'll be very happy.
     
  10. DocRock

    DocRock Prince

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    I think this is basically spot on. While I do not hate the game and will certainly not refund it, the 94 metacritic shown for the first 5 days is just a joke. I would rate it around 75% max.

    But it's ok, I expected it to be that way. I will finish 3-4 games and then for a big patch to make the game playable.
     
  11. SammyKhalifa

    SammyKhalifa Deity

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    You're the one missing out then. It's a fun game that will only get better. I almost missed getting up to go to work this morning because I couldn't stop playing last night.
     
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  12. PhilBowles

    PhilBowles Deity

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    If you've got the game, you've got it. Unless you're waiting on sales to make a significant saving, it's essentially irrelevant when you buy in in a world of patches.
     
  13. nerovipusqc

    nerovipusqc Chieftain

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    Very good game, music,gameplay, graphics (wonders and cities are amazing, they feel more alive). There is some balance issues (what game doesn't), AI needs to improve...
     
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  14. narmox

    narmox Emperor

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    Ok actual initial thoughts after 2 days of playing, including playing until 6am.. ouch.. oops..

    1. One More Turn is still alive and well.
    2. There is a lot that we don't understand yet, which I think leads to a lot of frustration and posts about how things are broken. A lot of information that is hidden or not easy to access, which doesn't help the feeling of not knowing what is going on.
    3. I like the districts. I learned a lot from the LPs and am doing my best to place them strategically, and specializing my cities rather than trying to build everything everywhere. This helps somewhat with the science/production imbalance.
    4. I'm also trying to balance my science and culture more, so that they advance more on par with each other. Seems like a more satisfying experience that way.
    5. Trying to understand the AIs is possible, I don't think they are THAT broken in terms of diplomacy or agenda, just inscrutable or insufferable sometimes (CALM DOWN Monty I just hooked up a luxury but maybe I have another copy I can hook up also and trade with you? CALM DOWN Kongo I just founded my religion 20 seconds ago, I don't even have a missionary to spread it halfway around my landmass towards you...)
    6. Trying to understand how to balance things. My first game was.. Lucky. I outpaced everyone as Egypt, and was a very balanced Civ, not too many cities, and built a lot of wonders. My second game, I was just building my third musketman in 1290 AD, finishing off a stalemate war with Kongo with an Aztec army parked at my border, when Germany entered the Modern Era. OUCH. Obviously I didn't play to Russia's strengths very well...
    7. Observation: AI being worried about troops close to their borders pretty much means troops within sight, which means within 2 tiles of anywhere in their borders, standing there or moving around for X (no idea how many) turns. I think at that point you have 30 turns to remove them. Ignoring the request multiple times CAN lead to denouncing or wars, while promising to withdraw and not doing so can do the same too.
    8. I'm interested in playing more with the Casus Belli system. I'm sure the warmongering penalties aren't as broken as people say, it's just a matter of understanding what is going on. I'm sure there are some bugs too like the AI denouncing you for going to war with someone as a result of them asking you for the joint war... Hasn't happened to me but I've seen it in LPs.
    9. Lots and lots and lots of facets to play around with and discover and master. I'm loving it! Despite the bugs and imbalances, it's quite enjoyable.
     
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  15. PhilBowles

    PhilBowles Deity

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    Trying to understand them may be possible, but the point made in reviews that really hasn't panned out is that AI behaviour makes more intuitive sense. I never really understood the complaints about Civ V in this regard but I grasped the tripartite relation-based system readily and AI behaviour generally made sense. Other people evidently found it more difficult. With Civ VI, from what I've seen so far, the AIs behave basically identically - the agendas may affect what they shout at you about, but since they never do anything worse than denounce it doesn't much matter. But everyone in my game hates everyone with no clear reason - with the sole exception of a game-long alliance between me and Norway. Which itself makes no sense mechanically as I've never had a navy, contrary to Harald's agenda, and Harald has moaned about it from time to time, and on at least one of the rare occasions when he's contacted me asking for a deal I've refused him.

    Whether it can be understood with effort or not, Civ VI has not fulfilled its promise to be more transparent - especially as the diplomacy modifiers have gone back to being hidden, which caused so many complaints in Civ V vanilla that they were added in a patch.
     
  16. LDiCesare

    LDiCesare Deity

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    The diplo modifiers are visible when you have an embassy or something. They don't remain hidden very long. And anyway at the beginning, everyone just surprise wars everyone else for no reason.
     
  17. mitsho

    mitsho Deity

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    I haven’t been able to play much. I haven’t even finished the first game yet since well there is less time nowadays. But I am on my way to winning it (having to click a lot in the late game is a problem in this game as well). Still, I do need to lose a few comments. First, civ6 is remarkably ‘finished’ for a vanilla civ game, but the problems are numerous and just point to them not having enough time and money to polish it. I would name four points:

    The problems show themselves mostly in the 1) User Interface: non-sortable trade lists, no building queue, not being clear which tile is the next at border expansion, few tooltips and lots of game systems non-explained (see culture victory or how to create national parks). There’s even already mods for this….

    Some 2) Balancement is necessary, but this is obvious for a new game. F.e. there’s few reasons to be coastal, but easy solutions (a building like the water mill for rivers + adjacency bonuses farther over water + harbors don’t increase district limit in coastal cities + buildings improve water*). Religion is another example, as it’s hard to defend against such a victory attempt. Faith would maybe need other valves, f.e. buying tiles in cities or stationary defense sinks.

    What’s the bigger problem for me with Religion is 3) micromanagement. The flood waves of missionaries make my game lag, hinder movement and feel unrealistic. Doubling the strengths and costs of those units would be a first step. Another micromanagement hell is diplomacy (and has been for all civ games) where it is mostly linked to UI. Looking for the best deal to sell resource X should be easy and the reasons behind the stance of the AI against you needs to be understandable. Constant pop-ups to remind you of x and a pile of rumors about barb-camps & built granaries all need to be addressed.

    Lastly, 4) diversification. Districts seem fresh and all, but somehow I feel they reduce choice. Cities have similar builds and once you decided on a district, you will build the buildings inside them. And those are quite similar to each other, adding more of the same yield, but better than the building before. Buildings should have different impacts and there should be more choices in the slots (like stable against barracks). There could also be more distinct policy cards or whatever. Also Ancient vs Medieval vs Renaissance Walls is well … meh from a historian’s perspective. And Railroads! And Temple+Monastery, not Shrine+Temple... :)

    I also miss deserts being considered as harsh terrain, my mod in civ5 had that. But I will stay with the vanilla game for the moment until mods are stable and I have some achievements :).
     
  18. Banners

    Banners Chieftain

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    Spent a few late nights, early mornings and lunch-breaks(!) completing my first game as India and, if nothing else, that 'one more turn' feeling was definitely there. Whilst, as most people are saying, there are lots of issues, I am confident they will be fixed in the near future when you consider how much Civ V improved over time.

    I guess my main criticism would be about the lack of clarity ie. my lack of understanding of the game's rules. I was very excited about getting Civ VI so avoided all the previews and videos etc., so maybe that's the issue. But there seemed to be a lot of things where I just didn't get how they worked, and where there didn't seem to be any instructions—culture and tourism for example. It all felt very opaque—sometimes the numbers just didn't seem to add up. That's doesn't make the new ideas a bad thing—if they could be communicated better that should make things much more enjoyable. Furthermore, a lot of time was spent looking for things that were in Civ V—city connections, gold/science production, cargo ships, happiness, ideologies etc. So once I get my head around the changes, I guess things should be better in that way too.

    A lot's been said in terms of the UI (lack of contrast on the map, missing shortcuts etc), so I won't mention them again. But the poor edge scrolling was a pain, and the way the mouse wheel doesn't zoom precisely where you're pointing was particularly annoying. At first I was worried I was missing important info which popped up, but the notifications ultimately seemed unnecessarily spammy—do I really need to know when another Civ has made a trade route? It would be good to map the units' colours to the leader's portraits at the top, as sometimes I didn't know who to click on. I'm not sure I liked the boosts—a lot of times they were happening accidentally, and Science seemed less 'vital' than before. I'm kind of mixed about the art style. Overall, I guess it's good to be different, and there are some beautiful touches such as the waves on the cliffs.

    Similarly, the AI has been talked about a lot—it was certainly weird attacking Kongo with a fleet of bombers when all he had were a couple of club-weilding Warriors—so I won't repeat all that. However, what I would say is that it must have been difficult to code the AI if the game's rules were being altered and experimented with all the time during development. Now we have the vanilla release, that draws 'a line in the sand', where certain concepts that must have been quite fluid as the devs rushed to release, are now somewhat firmer, patches notwithstanding of course (none of us know the pressures from shareholders, management etc. that the devs must have been under, nor how often or significantly things changed as deadlines loomed ominously—how could you do the AI if you didn't have the rulebook?)

    Essentially, whilst the game was engrossing, it wasn't compelling or immersive. As it is now, the AI's behaviour meant I was questioning things, rather than reacting to them within the actual game and trying to adapt my play appropriately. Thus, without any believable influence from the other Civs, it all got a bit mechanical and—dare I say it—boring. As others have said, the balance and pacing aren't quite there (but again I'm optimistic that'll be sorted), and I confess I've only done one full play-through on one map with one Civ—so, my experience is pretty limited. But, in conclusion my initial thoughts are these...

    I liked it and enjoyed it overall. I'm grateful we have a Civ VI, that it is a 'pure' PC game, and that it hasn't been messed with in the same kind of way that happened to the once-mighty Sim City. It looks great by and large, and Firaxis have tried to do a lot of things where I think you can see what they're aiming for, and the degree of quality they're aspiring towards. Compared to my memories of how buggy and underwhelming Civ V was, I think the new game is a much better start, a great platform—one which I hope (and believe) will be built on to deliver the magnificent Civ VI game which at the moment seems to be so tantalisingly just out of reach.
     
  19. PhilBowles

    PhilBowles Deity

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    So, my game ended abruptly and, bizarrely, with no indication who won until I clicked One More Turn and checked the victory screens. It turns out I hadn't been paying attention to the science tab, just the main summary, and 'who's winning' on the science tab doesn't seem based on any more than science output. So, as the bubble wasn't filling up, I was assuming the Aztecs were sitting on their hands while it turned out they actually completed all the stages of the Space Race (apparently it's newsworthy when a crossbowman clears a barbarian camp in 1940 or earns a promotion, but going to the moon or Mars doesn't make the papers). Congrats to the AI for winning, I suppose, but it still feels wrong that I should come as close as I did to winning on Emperor on my first playthrough with an unfamiliar game - in the past I've started my Civ sessions with a new game at Prince before graduating up the ranks.

    Some sad AI behaviour came to light with Satellites - Russia sitting on a heap of unused Great Artists and Writers, and an entire continent unoccupied save for city states and one Indian city - and the city-states weren't hemming anyone in.

    On the one hand losing gives me hope that the game's less superficial than it looked during my playthrough and some degree of fine-tuning strategies earlier is demanded - but on the other it seems unlikely the depth is presently sufficient.
     
  20. Jeckel

    Jeckel Great Reverend

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    We started installing a couple mods to fix the abysmal UI. Definitely a plus for Civ that this is possible, though less of one than it was a few years ago since being moddable is becoming a standard for games.

    Again, as with so many parts of this game, it falls apart pretty quickly. Namely, we're getting sick and tired of having to start a new game every time we want to try a new mod. If a mod doesn't do something at map generation, then there is no good reason that it can't be added midgame. And even if it does do something at map gen, so what, the mod should still be addable midgame and you just don't get the generation time stuff. If the choice is between not adding mods and starting a new game every time.. well... that isn't a choice at all and instead I choose to add this as one more item on the list of reasons I'm not inclined to buy my own copy of the game yet and am becoming more and more likely to recommend that other people do the same.

    We're going to give the game a couple more chances, but if more of these pointless annoyances keep popping up, that will be it and it will loss my sale and my buddy will join me on the side of not purchasing any Civ games until well after launch when drastically cut sales make it worthwhile. Firaxis lost my trust with Civ 5 and I'm watching Civ 6 do the exact same thing to my friend. They really need to kick it up a notch and maybe get the supposed patches dropping sooner rather than later.
     
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