Discussion in 'Civ6 - General Discussions' started by AtlantisAuthor, Aug 19, 2019.
I'd agree with this, but I'd also add that it's no better or worse than Civ6's.
I think Civ VI is a bit better than EL in diplomacy because the AI will often do literally no interacting until it decides "well, we've been at cold war for 80 turns and I haven't even tried to do anything about it, so here's an army and a war declaration". Civ VI AI feels like it is actually interacting with you even if it can be a nuisance.
Belatedly, religious proselytism as part of cultural expansion is a non-implementation, and I'm not sure to what extent it's more accurate than any other approach. America's "cultural imperialism" of exporting movies, Starbucks and McDonald's does not spread Christianity nor produce any sort of religious conversion.
Evangelization has worked differently through the ages, and I'm not sure there's a single method that'll apply to every situation. Spanish evangelization of Native American tribes has nothing to do with how religion (or beliefs) spreads nowadays, and religion's relationship with the culture of a given civilization has always been fluid.
There's also a difference between state-driven evangelization and that done by private organizations (i.e. Latter Day Saints) in a later era. Separation of church and state has not removed the influence of religion in politics but has shifted it to a different, discreet (arguably still lesser) level. And it's not a homogeneous global effect since we're still talking about hundreds of societies in which religion plays differing roles.
So overall, what's the alternative? Civ implements a more traditional, clashing method, and it's suitable for the periods in which you're actually bothering about religion. Later in the game, other aspects gain greater focus.
As an aside Amplitude's original 4x - Endless Space is being offered free on Humble Bundle for the next 1d 19 hrs as of this writing.
Cool - It's a very good game. I like their style.
Endless Legend is one of those games that, after you've played it to death, you can go back to for awhile every year or so.
for those interested endless space is apparently for free at humblebundle today.
Difference in difficulty levels or factions perhaps? I've never had the AI DoW me in EL or ES2. On the other hand, I try to sign peace treaties as soon as the AI will accept them (which is part of why those crazy isolationist trees annoy me ).
Name me one major religion that's not an imperial cult that was founded by a state. The closest I can think of is Egyptian polytheism, which was a syncretization of various local Egyptian religions by the early pharaohs--but even that only sort of counts since the basic cults existed before Scorpion or Narmer or Menes. Islam and Judaism arguably worked the other way wherein a religion founded a state, but even they are not inseparably bound to a state (indeed Judaism has been stateless for 2,500 years and done just fine). Meanwhile Zoroastrianism, Christianity, Hinduism, Buddhism, Taoism, Confucianism, Shinto--none of them were founded under the auspices of states, all of them have spread with disregard to state boundaries (NB Christianity spread certainly as far as China and possibly as far as Japan even while it was being on-and-off persecuted in Rome, Persia, and China), and all of them have had mixed relationships with government authorities (more to the point virtually all of them have been both sponsored by and persecuted by various states at various points in their histories). Also note that religions are often far more influential outside of their founding civilization (viz. Buddhism in East Asia or Christianity in Europe and the New World or, historically, Manichaeism in Central Asia), which is absolutely not represented by Civ6.
Said it before, will keep repeating it ad nauseam: Religion is something that happens to a Civ, not something a Civ makes happen. It is an Unnatural Disaster or an Internal Set of Barbarians that you have to react to just as you would an exploding Volcano within your borders, not something you can start, build, and use against your enemies without consequences.
I'm not sure what's your point. One could say the same thing about culture. If we treat religion the same way as culture, as I've said, it's a non-implementation.
So the problem is that Civ handles religion as the founding civilization's personal, controllable influence, as if every founder were the Vatican (even though religion founded the Vatican and not the other way round)? It's an approach, perhaps one mostly suited to the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. But again, what's the alternative other than doing away with it entirely and assume it to be part of culture?
If religion is merely treated as a random event and factor which moves around the game world with little possible player effect or use, that's... well, that's not very interactive.
We also have to consider that practically everything in Civilization is made state-run, down to every aspect of research and city planning. There is absolutely no private sector at any point, no aspect of a civ outside the immortal god-ruler's reach. Religion only follows the line of everything else.
On the contrary, as I mentioned above, there are several things in Civ that are not under Player Control, but are subject to Player Reaction:
Barbarians, Natural Disasters, as I mentioned, and also the Geography of the specific game you are playing - which City States, if any, are nearby? Which Civs? How much Influence, in the form of Trade Routes or Trades, do any of them have with you?
I maintain that its reacting to those Uncontrolled elements and 'solving' the problems they create that makes for an interesting game. IF the entire game is 'state run' as you maintain, then it's like playing Solitaire - and cheating.
I maintain that those 'uncontrolled' elements above are the better model for Religion: something that Happens To your Civ instead of being caused, maintained, and spread by your Civ. BUT something to which you have a set of adequate or barely adequate responses for. If you can repair damage from a Volcano, there should also be a way of alleviating problems caused by a Religion. Religion might even be one of your 'tools' for solving other problems:
"Barbarians are Attacking! - We'll convert 'em' to Jainism; after that they won't hurt a fly."
And there will be problems caused by Religion. You could write a history of Civilization based entirely on the problems caused by Religion and the failures of various states to handle them. That, for me at least, would be a better game than a Fantasy Game in which you can make up a religion, put together a collection of desired traits for the religion, and then hurl it at your opponents like a Guided Missal (sorry, couldn't resist)
No. What I maintain is that everything pertaining to a civ is state-run. There are no parts of a civ which run themselves and act independently from the player, who embodies the entirety of the government with absolute power.
The vast majority of 4X games work like this: the only exceptions I can think of are Distant Worlds and the Victoria games.
Obviously the game world is not player-controlled. If such were the case, you might've accidentally wandered into the World Editor.
I suppose treating religion as an independent force which can be swayed and used by the major powers in various ways is a valid approach. I don't know if necessarily better, but different and worthy of exploration.
All this talk made me try CiVI again. Same old problem... there is NOT ENOUGH PRODUCTION ON THE MAP to be able to build decent cities. I'm in a city that's had five 'charges' from builders, has a silver mine, and yet IT TAKES 29 TURNS TO BUILD A CATAPULT.
I've said this before but I'm done. There are too many games I'd rather play where you can actually BUILD THINGS and it won't take forever to do it.
Humankind, I'm ready to go whenever you are.
Want for CivIV workers to cut down every tree for hammers intensifies.
I dunno how cutting down this 6,000 year old forest somehow helps me crank out another Modern Armor BUT LETS GO!
Having it develop organically and be something your empire reacts to--whether adopting it, tolerating it, or persecuting it. Which then has ramifications: cf. how Persia initially persecuted Christians because they thought they were "Roman spies," then harbored Eastern Christians because Rome had adopted Western Christianity. "State sponsored religions" is not even an accurate depiction of the Middle Ages, where secular kings were very often at variance with the Holy See (viz. the Investiture Conflict or the Babylonian Captivity of the Papacy). Even theocracies have complex and not altogether cozy relationships with religion. Civ6's approach is simplistic, historically inaccurate, and in general a pop culture view of how religion worked even in the Middle Ages.
No, it would unequivocally be better.
I wouldn't say historical accuracy is Civilization's forte, and as I've said, there's other major ahistorically state-run aspects under the same design vision, which as a whole ignores the work and impact of the private citizen almost entirely.
But if someone could boil down the complexities of religion to an alternative yet simple enough format for this kind of game, it'd be interesting to see.
It's certainly not Civ6's.
Really I think Civ6's biggest problems in regards to religion are that 1) religion is a zero sum game in more ways than one and 2) religion has negligible impact on diplomacy (a very minor bonus for sharing a religion, a small malus from Philip and a couple others specifically for not sharing religion). The first could be solved by making beliefs non-mutually exclusive, make religion spread more aggressively via passive means (making multi-religion empires more likely among other effects), and just nixing the religious victory altogether. The second could be solved by allowing empires to declare a state religion (which shouldn't have to be the majority religion in the civ!) and increasing the effect sharing or not sharing a religion has on other civilization. In particular, trying to purge a religion from your territory should really upset civs that have that religion as their state religion (this was, for example, the motivation for the First Crusade, at least ostensibly). Likewise, declaring a religious war should earn favor with civs that share your religion and bring the ire of civs that share religion with your target. (In general, not just religiously, Civ6 could really use more motivations to create diplomatic blocs.)
Cutting religious victory and increasing passive spread would also help with another problem: historically there have been a lot of religions but only a few have become major religions worldwide (e.g., Christianity and Islam together account for 2/3 of the world's population). By increasing religious spread and having state religions, this would both increase the number of religions that could be founded while also making it likelier that just a few will come to dominate wide swathes of the world, especially under the consideration that diplomatic pressure will encourage civs to adopt the state religions of their allies or powerful neighbors.
As long as we are in this subject, I always thought that the Religions system in Civ IV was, for some aspects, way better than Civ V or VI.
For people that don't know or remember, all religions (seven: Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Confucianism, Taoism, Buddhism and Hinduism) were exactly the same: they give only bonuses to culture and happiness. They were founded not by a prophet but when you were the first to discover a certain tech (polytheism for Hinduism, meditation for Buddhism, etc). If you had a large scientific advance, you could be the one that found all religions. You could also choose which religion would be your State religion (because religion had a lot more diplomatic consequences, especially with Saladin or Isabelle) even if only one of your 40 cities were converted to this. Of course, cities where your State religion was dominant had a happiness bonus, but you could built special buildings of each religion (churches, synagogues, pagodas...) in each city as long as you had at least one follower.
This system was (kind of) organic: religions popped up, you were not really controlling them (you could train missionaries, of course, to spread it the most), holy cities could all be in your empire (when you discovered the tech, you didn't chose where the religion popped) and, with Liberalism, you could even chose to adopt Freedom of Religion.
It was waaaay better... except for the fact that each religion was the same.
I love the Civs V&VI system of customizable religion. It give flavor, it give depht, in a complete unrealistic way, but it's funnier and more interrestant.
The problem with religion (in Civ VI) is to join the two principles: that each religion has a very specific and unique flavour (like Pantheons, that are more something that "happen" and you don't really control anymore) with the fact that it happened organically.
What could be done is that you allow a number of available Great Prophets equal to the number of AI (12 max). Each civ can earn multiple Great Prophets and, thus, found multiple religions (of course, you'll have to find a way to prevent players to just hoard all Great Prophets and allow only one religion in the world... maybe when a Great Prophet is earned, a religion is automatically founded in the most populous city with a Holy Site in your empire that is not yet a Holy City (if all cities are holy, then just make a city double holy)). Each religion you found, you can choose its tenets and beliefs (as normal). You can have a decision (somewhere) that allows you to chose your state religion. The Religion Victory would not be to make the religion you founded the most important but the owner of the holy city of the predominant religion would win when enough cities would have been converted. This way could work but I'm not even sure.
But for Humankind, since there will not be a religious victory per se, they can handle Religion in a more organic way rather than the Imperial Cult thingy we have in Civ because they prefered to put Religion as one of the victories. So I hope Amplitude will deal the religion issue right (and, IMO, it's not complicated: if you see it ala Civ V, like a culture/happiness producer that have diplomatic influence about neighbor and something you have to deal with rather than control, it will be for me rather good)
You know what annoys me in religion system in civ6? Everything.
I mean, everything from immersive point of view. It is fun to design your own religion but government of an empire "designing" new faith for pragmatic purposes is so completely not-how-religions-work, at least if you are not 15 year old internet atheist...
So in my free time I have designed new system to make it closer to reality while still being fun.
RELIGION SYSTEM FOR CIV7
Religions are not designed by imperial governments, they appear in the world as global events around historical dates and every empire can chose one of five gradual attitudes towards them: Persecution, Disapproval, Tolerance, Patronage and State Religion. You can have only one State Religion at time (and switching between them is painful, and very painful the worse attitude towards them). You can also have at most two other religions with positive support at Patronage (three if you have no State Religion).
(The worse is your Attitude the less of that religion will spawn in your territory - from almost zero at Persecution to instant conversion of capital at State Religion. So it's not 'random'. You choose what religion do you get in your empire and what degree.
The downside of this system is unrealistic appearance of religions in faraway parts in the world in the same time (even across oceans) but this would be necessary solution anyway because otherwise it's be unfair if entire continents would be unable to adopt religions due to unlucky spawn in one particular physical location.)
There are eight Global Religions: Zoroastrianism, Hinduism, Judaism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Taoism, Christianity and Islam. They appear around IRL founding dates.
Every religion has its own strong advantages and disadvantages which support certain playstyle. For example
Hinduism is very flexible and tolerant, capable of assimilaing other religions and conductive to science but enforces you to use special caste system mechanic which has quite limiting effects on pops and limits your ability to reassign them.
Reformations and schisms happen dynamically (although Christianity and Islam actually have among disadvantages inbuilt enormous tendency to schisms, so seeing Catholic vs Orthodox and Sunni vs Shia is very likely).
There is no religious victory because it's damn stupid idea. Religions provide mechanical changes and impact diplomacy based on your set attitude to other religions (once you set it its hard to change it but its doable).
If you don't want to take one of eight default religions you also have an option of transforming your default blank pantheon (which has no bonuses or penalties) into organized religion. The upside is you can choose some bonuses; the downside is they are not as strong and gamechanging and major religions have additional relations penalty with 'savages' which don't have one of great eight.
There are no physical religious units on the map (I have a feeling most people got tired of this concept in civ6).
That religion system is really good! I just have some suggestions to had:
First, I'm not fan of the random system. Don't get me wrong: it's perfect for smaller events (ala Civ IV) or for environmental disasters (where it's a one-time thing that have not to much consequences for the rest of the game), but for something as important and restricted as religions, it might not be the good thing. Suppose you are a civ or a leader who have religion focus (and there will be: Spain or India, for example), you won't want to be awarded a random religion with bad bonuses (or bonuses not suited to what you're planning) or worse: having all the religions spawning in one place at the other side of the world and not be able to enjoy benefits of a religion until late game.
What could happen is that you could treat religions like wonders: it's like a race to see which one will be the first to let it spawn here. For example, Hinduism will appear in the first city to atteign a population of 10 (or 6, or whatever), simulating the fact that it appears in a fertile, populous region ; Islam could appear in the first city to have trade routes with 4 differents empires (going to or from) ; Christianity could appear when a non-judaist empire conquer his first Judaist city ; and so one. It could be linked to the bonuses, to reality, and it would be more intelligent that just spawning randomly. It might defeat the purpose of "religions just appear womewhere in the world", but religions never appears in the world like that ; there was always some circumstances that make it appear.
With this system, you should (and must) be allowed to too have a civic, or a government, or something, that allows you to adopt Freedom of Religion: religions in your cities can only be in Tolerance, and you can have one in Patronage (simulating secular countries that still have some sort of "state" religion, like UK where you're basically free to worship whatever you want but the queen is still the head of the Anglican Church).
Happiness (or amenities) should be linked to the religion system: in each city, you gain 1 amenity for each follower of the State Religion, 1 for 2 followers of Patronage religions, -1 per 2 followers of Disapproval and -2 for Discriminate.
And diplomacy should be linked too: in Middle Ages and Renaissance era, they should be large maluses/bonuses for different/same religion, but those maluses/bonuses should decrease when you advance in History, replaced by the maluses/bonuses of different/similar government.
But we're making plans on the comet: we all hope for an extansion for civ VI, and we will have to wait a certain amount of time before Firaxis really see Humankind as a threat, then beginning to design it, develop it and finally deliver it.
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