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Is the Civ Series telling a wrong (hi)story?

Discussion in 'Civ6 - General Discussions' started by historix69, Feb 27, 2018.

  1. Boris Gudenuf

    Boris Gudenuf Warlord

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    - Or the increasing acidification of the oceans, depletion of ozone layer, increasing energy in the weather systems, rising ocean/sea levels due to melting of the Greenland and Antarctica ice packs...

    The old song summed it up neatly:

    "The Polar Ice Cap is slowly melting
    In a hundred years, we'll all be dead, I guess
    And if that hasn't floored us
    There's a Planet heading toward us
    We're going to be an Interstellar Mess!
    Chorus:
    Oh, we're Doomed, Doomed, Doomed
    Yes, We're Doomed, Doomed, Doomed
    We're Doomed to disappear without a Trace!
    We're Doomed, Doomed, Doomed,
    Yes, We're Doomed, Doomed, Doomed,
    We're Doomed to be the last of the Human Race!
     
  2. God of Kings

    God of Kings Ruler of all heads of state

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    Back in 1996, when Pokémon was first made, nobody ever predicted that in 2016, one could walk around aimlessly staring at a pocket-sized computer searching for virtual monsters that pop up in certain real world locations.

    A century from now, many would believe that the late 20th century and the early 21st century were a dangerous time for motorists.
     
  3. Boris Gudenuf

    Boris Gudenuf Warlord

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    Or the number of real monsters that could pop up in virtually any location, with assault rifles or discriminatory legislation in schools, theaters, coffee shops or capitals...
     
    rattatatouille and God of Kings like this.
  4. Ferocitus

    Ferocitus Warlord

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    My engineer friends use the term magic thinking to refer to that hope
    expressed by non-engies that technology can and will fix any problem.

    Plastic-eating bacteria are already around. Among many other problems are
    scaling production up to a level that can handle the amount of plastic in the
    oceans now, and the "inertia", whereby there will be more even if we stopped
    plastic production totally.

    And, as you point out, there are unforeseen consequences. One that many people
    forget is that when bacteria and viruses die, they don't always decay into
    benign products like water and CO2. After consuming plastics, PCBs, Dieldrin,
    and what not, there could be all manner of chemicals that were not thought of
    as by-products when bio-engineers released their bugs into the world's water
    supplies.

    Yep, we're doomed. The Paris Accord was a reasonable attempt at reducing the
    expected global temperature rise, but you aren't going to easily stop those like
    VW CEO's from circumventing the regs to maintain share prices.
    Sigh: so many filthy capitalists, so few walls.

    Maybe Civ should have a new bonus for walls when you have Communism and
    you are fighting against Civs with Capitalism and Stock Markets. :)
     
  5. Boris Gudenuf

    Boris Gudenuf Warlord

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    My father was an (electrical) engineer, and his favorite saying was to the effect that Technology doesn't solve problems, it just changes them into Different Ones.

    Eliot Pattison, in his Post-Apocalyptic novel Ashes of the Earth postulated that after technology caused the population and civilization to crash, the survivors would not trust any technology that they couldn't see working. Consequently, a generation after The Event, they are using sailing vessels and steam engines - 19th century 'tech' that doesn't hide surprises in microchips and chemical reactions.

    Perhaps, then, a DLC of Extended Civ VI in which you start with a map full of ruined cities, a few small settlements and No Technology allowed past the Industrial Era.
    And, of course, terrain and Resources entirely different from what we would normally have at the start of the game, since most of our domesticated animals would be hard put to survive without us and we've exterminated most of the other large creatures. The Bonus Resources might be all in the ruins of the cities, plus whatever starts to fill the ecological niches left outside of them.

    My bet is on raccoons and coyotes - they've already extended their ranges throughout the USA by adapting to survive and thrive in suburbia: I'm sure they'd do equally well without suburbia or suburbanites...
     
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  6. Ferocitus

    Ferocitus Warlord

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    Faint echoes of the first scifi book I ever read - A Canticle for Leibowitz.

    If they lose knowledge of marine science and fluid dynamics, they might
    start believing in underwater creatures that slow their vessels when they
    enter waters with density gradients due to temperature or salinity.

    I see your raccoons, and raise you rats and ferrets. Things that can fit through
    sluicegates and get into the underground sewers, aka the vermin superhighway!
     
  7. historix69

    historix69 Chieftain

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    In Civ1 there was Pollution from population and production. Too much pollution resulted in polluted tiles with reduced yields and finally Global Warming with effects on terrain like plains turning to desert or coastal tiles turning to swamps. Starting into Industrial Revolution in Civ1 was dangerous when done wrong.

    While nobody liked cleaning pollution, the feature now is somehow missing. Housing in Civ6 is more like a white-washed pollution and (afaik) does not include pollution from production at all.

    In a modern version of Pollution, the accumulated Pollution could be a debuff for the city which reduces all yields by % until dealt with, e.g. by buying/building a recycling plant or sewers or replacing the coal plant with a more clean type of enegy source.
     
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2018
    PeterChu likes this.
  8. Ferocitus

    Ferocitus Warlord

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    I remember that.
    There are any number of possible variations, some easy to implement, others far
    more difficult. Rivers downstream from industrial plants or mines could become
    less productive, resources could be be exhausted over time, etc. But then the
    game would start to resemble Sim Earth, which I seem to recall was out around
    the same time as Civ 1 or 2.
     
  9. historix69

    historix69 Chieftain

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    SimEarth was published in 1990 : https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SimEarth
    I think I played it once or twice.
    If you would remove all features of SimEarth from Civ, Civ would be dead. (Both games share concepts like worldmap, terrain, climate, cities, population, ...)
    Civ1 to some part resembled SimEarth, but also other games like the boardgame Civ and the strategy game Empire.

    Reaching the industrial age, building factories and let population grow and then experience heavy pollution is a historic experience. I don't know why it should be omitted. It is the reason to research things like public transport, sanitation, recycling, clean energy, etc.

    Look at London's history for example :
     
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2018
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  10. God of Kings

    God of Kings Ruler of all heads of state

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    Too bad Extraordinary Avarice purchased Maxis and killed it.

    It would be great if there were a true spiritual successor of SimEarth.
     
  11. Olleus

    Olleus Warlord

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    Pollution in some form would be a good game mechanic.

    But global warming would not. That's because any mechanic which is paradox-of-the-commons-like doesn't work in a game which is about different players competition against each other. Why should I build fewer factories (hurting myself) just to reduce global warming, when that hurts everyone equally. It didn't work in Civ4, and I don't see how it *could* be made to work.

    I'd be all up for some system of buildings giving negative amenities. Let factories stack again, BUT, let them give -1 amenity to all cities in range too.
     
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  12. historix69

    historix69 Chieftain

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  13. Gedemon

    Gedemon Modder Moderator

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    What about simply applying negative amenities to the civilization(s) with the biggest pollution values after (and if) global warming effects start to be applied on the map ?
     
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  14. historix69

    historix69 Chieftain

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    Besides negative happiness and negative rating for tiles I would apply a negative modifier on Food, Production, Gold Income.
    The pollution effect could spread and stack similar to loyalty with its Range of 9 tiles with decreasing effect. So smaller cities would suffer from polution by bigger cities nearby.

    Example :
    The pollution mechanic should have factors to build up and reduce pollution :
    A natural refresh rate might be based on surrounding terrain with natural (green), unused and unworked tiles like forests and rivers.
    The refresh rate would reduce accumulated polution every turn.
    Pollution would be caused by population, production (shields), certain buildings and technologies and could be modified (reduced) by other buildings and technologies as in Civ1.
    The pollution produced by a city would spread to surrounding cities adding to their local pollution with its effect decreased by range. (similar to loyalty)
    If pollution per turn exceeds refresh rate, pollution is accumulated. The more pollution is accumulated, the higher the negative modifier for the city.
    (Special Buildings in a city would allow to reduce pollution from population and production in a city, but would not affect pollution from other cities.)
     
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  15. Karpius

    Karpius Chieftain

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    My knee jerk reaction would be to agree about applying negative amenities based on Industrial Zone growth. However, on the flip side, many of those amenities do not happen without urbanization. Reviewing the game mechanics as they are now from a historical perspective, things like the workshop and factory drew the populations to the cities for jobs with which they could purchase said amenities. One cannot ride that fancy ferris wheel at the water park without cash. I think it is the sort of paradox that balances itself out as far as the game is concerned.

    Global warming, in my opinion, is a situation best avoided in the game unless it is introduced at the very beginning to represent the true time scale of how long it has been occurring. Likewise, I feel that most natural disasters (earthquakes, hurricanes) are best left out because of their rather isolated effects compared to the scale of the game. Plagues, however, affected large swaths of populations and territory and could last for years. A plague might be triggered by the first meeting of two civs, exposing one or both to something neither has an immunity for. The disease might then spread along established trade routes or even proximity of cities.
     
  16. historix69

    historix69 Chieftain

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    I mentioned Global Warming above as a feature in Civ1.

    Climate on Earth is not constant. There was always a change of warmer and colder times. Random events like a meteor striking earth or a vulcan eruption may influence climate as well as plants and animals and humans with their machines or a nuclear war (winter).

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Climate
     
  17. Karpius

    Karpius Chieftain

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    Or a shift in the Earth's axis
    ....or a change in the magnetic poles
    ....a change in solar activity
    ....a sudden deep sea release of methane gas

    Lots of stuff going on with the Earth that we have no control over.
     
  18. Olleus

    Olleus Warlord

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    But what's the reasoning behind that? From either an immersion or gameplay perspective.

    I can believe the citizens of Birmingham are unhappy about pollution in Birmingham, but how does that depend on pollution in Glasgow or Detroit?
     
  19. Gedemon

    Gedemon Modder Moderator

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    We're talking of a hypothetical global warming mechanism in the game, you've just written that you don't want a mechanism that will hurts everyone equally, so I've proposed an adaptation where the global effect hurts every one, but not equally: on top of the global warming effect, whatever that would be, the civilizations with the biggest pollution values (however that's calculated) would be globally affected by negative amenities.

    That's the gameplay part.

    For the immersion part, I see it that way: "we are now underwater, ok, like everyone else... but it's the decisions of our government to put factories everywhere that are the cause of it ? revolution !"

    And diplomatic penalties could be also added.

    And all that doesn't prevent local/regional negative amenities from the pollution itself.
     
  20. Olleus

    Olleus Warlord

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    I see what you mean.

    Not sure I agree that it's interesting game play to have (all or part of) the amenity affect of factories kicking in via global warming (even uneven global warming) rather than directly through building the factory. What's the interesting decision that it poses the player? How does it affect strategy?

    Is it the time delay factor? The risk of a big loss (ie, having a city flooded) compared to the certainty of a small amenity penalty? If its those, then you could have pollution have some chance of killing a pop every turn, or destroying a farm/fishing point, or even destroying a food resource nearby. To me, those all seem like better options than going via a world wide mechanism where the link between cause and effect feels, or even is, very weak.

    I'm also not convinced by the immersive explanation you gave. People dont think like that, especially about a phenomenon which is so invisible and feels random. In my books, one of the key advantages of having immersive mechanism in strategy games is to let the intuition of the player guide him into what are probably good choices. Building a factory that causes local pollution which makes people angry does that. Building a factory which causes global pollution which 150 years later causes flooding all around the world (because other people are doing it to) which makes my own citizens angry at me doesn't do that for me.


    Honestly, I think there's more than enough to do to make local pollution damaging. It's also more relevant to a game that spans as much history as civilization. Roman over-farming and deforestation of north Africa leading to desertification is an example that springs to mind. Global warming would only really kick in in the last 50 turns of a game, which are simply not significant enough to be interesting IMO.
     

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