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Instant vs Static Yield

Discussion in 'General Balance' started by Stalker0, Jan 30, 2018.

  1. Stalker0

    Stalker0 Baller Magnus

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    Just took a look at some of my recent games.

    What I noticed was that in general, instant yields make up 1/3-1/2 the total bonus for most of the core yields (science, culture, gold). For GAP you can often get 5x as much from instant yields, and for tourism you often get 10x-15x from instant vs static.

    I was curious what people's thoughts were on this balance?

    I personally would rather their be less instant yields overall but its not a key issue for me...with maybe the exception of tourism. The problem with tourism is the tourism interface will constantly showing you as failing in tourism, where realistically you are booming because your instant yields are so high. This can be confusing for newer players in my opinion.

    So throwing this one out there to see if its actually a problem for anyone.
     
  2. ElliotS

    ElliotS Warmonger

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    I think the end result is balanced, so changing anything is a bad idea this late in development.
     
  3. Rekk

    Rekk Emperor

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    Agreed with tourism. The interface is pointless unless it can take instant yields into account. If Stalker's observations are the norm, then static yields are also not worth considering in decision-making processes, and the entire system is opaque for the ability to gauge your progress.
     
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2018
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  4. tu_79

    tu_79 Deity

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    I thought UI was updated to account for those instant yields. Guess it was not updated for tourism.
     
  5. Rekk

    Rekk Emperor

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    The updated UI is in a separate section of the top-bar. It doesn't interact with any of the other UI elements. It's a useful tool to have; with science or culture, you take an extra step of comparing your static yield/turn with the averaged instant yield then mentally altering the "turns to next tech/policy" by a rough fraction based on the ratio.

    With tourism, the UI could be telling you that your influence with other civs is falling, when you are actually making huge leaps forward. You need to recalculate everything from scratch, especially the civ dependent bonuses, and even then it won't be accurate, because your opponent's shiwn culture per turn doesn't take into account their instant yields either.

    With other yields only making up a small portion of their total, looking at an incorrect "turns till next _" isn't a big deal if you don't want to pull out your own pen and paper, but with tourism making up such a huge fraction, it's a different story.
     
  6. Grabbl

    Grabbl Prince

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    1) The mechanism of instant yields, and that it makes up a great portion of yields especially for tourism is good, I think. It's a really strong point of VP that if shifts tourism to a more active playstyle by giving the major portion by instant yields.

    2) The UI could be improved, but I'm not sure how. For me, the additional instant yield average is enough, but I suppose it would be good to be able to see "corrected" numbers of turns remaining to reach certain goals (e.g. next social policy, influent status). But I don't know how to do it without making the interface more clunky and thus even less beginner-friendly. So, at the moment I would say that the system works well and I can't think of a better alternative. Perhaps a tooltip for the tourism overview like "Don't take the tendencies literally, they don't include instant yields from historic events etc." to make it clear to beginners? I think that advanced players are usually aware of how to interpret these values and estimate "true yield output including instant yields. p
     
  7. tu_79

    tu_79 Deity

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    I don't see a strong reason. Current values are shown, modifiers are shown, so yo can see the tourism in this turn. I think the trend can be tweaked to show how things have changed in the last ten or twelve turns and it won't stop the perfectionist players from knowing what's going on. It may be more useful to new players to know whether they are advancing towards the next influence level.
     
  8. Gidoza

    Gidoza Emperor

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    I like the idea of instant yields, but I find the current system too much. It's nice to know what I'm getting very plainly from a tile, a kill (which is a normal instant yield), or a specialist, and I think in some ideal world that's all there would be. But in the real world, having proportions that favor static yields much more heavily seems more sane to me.

    What if "instant" yields were changed into temporary static yields?
     
  9. Gazebo

    Gazebo Lord of the Community Patch Supporter

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    Nope, nope, 1000x nope. System is fine.

    G
     
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  10. Questdog

    Questdog Prince

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    All the Instant Yields are one thing I do not like about this mod....
     
  11. Gazebo

    Gazebo Lord of the Community Patch Supporter

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    Let me explain, as I don't like to seem arbitrary.

    The biggest issues with recurring (per turn yields) are

    a.) they snowball like mad if you don't manage them (as +1 culture is worth so much more on turn 0 than turn 200).
    b.) they're a 'set it and forget it RONCO' mechanism. There's limited player interaction.
    c.) there's limited feedback from player action/interaction after the yield is set.

    To be honest, static yields are, in my opinion, profoundly boring and unexciting, and I'd remove them all in lieu of everything being active-yield based if I could. Filling up buckets for the sake of doing so is as old as civ gameplay-wise, but that doesn't make it a good system.

    G
     
  12. Stalker0

    Stalker0 Baller Magnus

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    G, I want to counter your points here. The problem with B is...there are so many instant yields in the game that they fall into the same trap. Sure maybe once in a while I'm working to maximum an instant yield, but in general I play my game and they just flood the right side of the screen. This is an area where less is more. If instant yields are rarer and require more focused player action than I play them special and try to maximize them. But right now, they are as much in the background as the static yields.

    Point C, this is actually a UI issue at the moment...and I'd say its the exact opposite of what you described. Right now, I can tell EXACTLY how my actions affect static yields. I build x building, yields go up. I switched to a specialist, Y yield goes down. Its clean and precise...that is true feedback. On the other hand, instant yields are slippery and loose. They come and go, and UI doesn't bring them to the forefront as much as it does for static yields. The average yields menu in EUI is a huge thing...honestly I actually didn't discover it until a few months ago. But there is still a looseness to the UI. When it says you have 10 turns to a tech....that is a lie. It will probably be 7 with all of the instants you get. The UI doesn't give direct feedback for the player, it gives them a wag.

    Its why I noted tourism especially. You get used the science and culture bars, and learning to shave a few turns off. But the tourism interface is just a bold face lie. Its actually quite difficult to tell how much progress if any you are making in tourism since the huge majority of the yields is hidden from you.

    But as I noted, most of this is less the fundamentals of the system and more how its presented in the UI. When teh happiness system was first introduced, I considered it unusuable because there was 0 feedback to the player. Once the UI showed the yields and the breakdown of unhappiness it became worthwhile. Instant yields I feel falls in a similar boat.
     
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  13. Gazebo

    Gazebo Lord of the Community Patch Supporter

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    To note, C. was not a UI point, it was developer-speak for input-oriented gameplay. Clicking 'build castle' is hardly a skill but timing WLTKD + GA + border growth yields is.
    B. Again, I can only do so much with the Civ UI. The Top Panel averages model is about as effective as I can get without rewriting the awful notification banner (which I won't do).

    Re: Tourism, that's actually something I can fix by making the game check against your instant yields in addition to your yields per turn for tourism (versus their culture per turn + instant yield culture).

    G
     
  14. Deadstarre

    Deadstarre Expert

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    knowing when to click 'build castle' (or anything else) is the basically the most important skill there is in this game... and, excluding combat, where the majority of critical thinking occurs.
     
  15. Stalker0

    Stalker0 Baller Magnus

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    Sure I might try to do that at somepoint in the game, but most of the time its "get border growth, get yield". I mean I try to work a timing to get my castles online just as the fealty bump kicks in. Too soon, and I lose yields from something else I could have built. Or building aqueducts right before dropping a WLTKD. Players can still do tricks and optimize with "simple buildings".

    More yields that are ubiquitous and really don't drive player decisions....pretty much all of the progress instant yields or all of the yields for burning Great People. There is no thought there, you just do them and move on. I would argue the university falls into that as well. Sure once in a while I might try to time something, but normally I just grow my cities and "oh yeah I get science".

    That said, I do think there are good and fun instant yields that promote player decision. I love the circus, I think its a highly strategic building. The bump for council of elders, great to time with a wonder build. Generally the ones with a set shelf life in the game I think are the true strategic ones. Otherwise its just yields yields yields through the game.


    But...all of that said, I know we are way late in the game to seriously talk about reeingeering instant yields, I really wouldn't want to. If a few UI tweaks like you described can make them clearer in the game, I think that's plenty.
     
  16. zeofig

    zeofig Chieftain

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    I like the instant yields. I find that maximising border/pop yields and similar things is one of the most fun parts of the game, and there are a lot of cool synergies which aren't totally obvious. It also gives the player a way to compete with the AI on a level other than tactics, since the AI can't possibly be that good at maximising these trickier yields and exploiting synergies.
     
  17. Gazebo

    Gazebo Lord of the Community Patch Supporter

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    I think we’ll just have to agree to disagree on instant yields.

    And yeah, the SS Yields sailed a long time ago.
     
  18. Amask

    Amask Oogala Boogala

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    The fact that tourism trend does not take into account instant yields is an issue because it directly modifies ideological pressure, no?

    I'm going for a cultural win with France right now, and I have only been "rising" for a few turns here and there, when in reality I'm influential with 7/9 civs.
     
  19. Grabbl

    Grabbl Prince

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    That was intended when changing how ideological pressure works, however. Like that, continuous tourism still gets a larger impact on something (namely unhappiness from ideological pressure to others).
     
  20. Gidoza

    Gidoza Emperor

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    Actually, it's the other way around. What's at issue here is how much you want to micromanage - yeah, you can certainly be anal about timing about all of your various abilities, yields, and so on, to maximize efficiency if you peek around at everything every turn and tune everything perfectly to maximalize all your possibilities. Will you do better? Yes. Is it worth it? No. Civ 5 takes enough processing time already - I hardly need to be dragging myself around my entire empire to make one silly tweak after another, and call that "Skill." We all have that skill, we're just not willing to invest in it because it's stupid to do so.

    This is besides the fact that - while more yields are indeed better - based on number of cities, yields required for tech, or a social policy, increase by certain percents, and thus two players can have exactly the same yields that are having entirely different effects. Now I suppose I could go and fetch a calculator and do the math and see what my real yields are modified by my city numbers or whatever - again, that's more work I'm not interested in doing when I'm playing a game, but more to the point I don't feel the yields when a whole pile of numbers are being thrown at my in my capital because those numbers are dependent on other numbers that aren't always immediately available to me. It's not that I can't access them, figure them out, and so on, it's that I don't care for this level of investment in a game (against an AI no less - perhaps against a human player, but even then I'd say a better design is in order - see Battle for Wesnoth for good PvP strategy that is as simple as it gets but plenty strategic, though it has its flaws of course), and furthermore, and most importantly: micromanagement is not skill, it's just time investment. Actual skill is open to the realization that the game is more than about mere math and that there are non-calculable things going on. Once you can't nail down a number, then skill starts getting involved.
     

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