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Leader Improvements

Discussion in 'Communitas Expansion Pack' started by Thalassicus, Dec 31, 2013.

  1. Thalassicus

    Thalassicus Bytes and Nibblers

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    These civs are the favorites of less than 1 in 10 people in year's Favorite Leaders polls:

    • Askia - Songhai
    • Hiawatha - Iroquois
    • Napoleon - France
    • Ramkhamhaeng - Siam
    • Suleiman - Ottomans
    • Attilla - Huns
    • Gajah - Indonesia
    • Haile - Ethiopia
    • Pachacuti - Incas
    • Pedro - Brazil

    How can we make these leaders more fun to play? You can see their abilities on the Leaders table.

    Askia was known for his powerful and well-trained militia. I'd like his 3 uniques to focus on that somehow.

    The Iroquois start with a powerful swordsman, and are stronger in forests and jungle. Perhaps the Longhouse is their weak point?

    Napoleon's unique ability seems like his weak point. How can we replace or improve it to make it more fun?

    I'm surprised to see Siam fare poorly. They did well in past polls. Their low ranking might be because I've never changed their effects, so perhaps their uniques feel bland or outdated compared to new exciting ideas we've come up with.

    Suleiman's low ranking is likely from the UA bug to a large extent. I don't think the "Barbary Port" idea worked out so well either. We could move that bonus to the ability, and re-instate the Sipahi.

    The Huns focus on early-game rushes. They are intended to be the only civ capable of large scale ancient-era conquest. They gather a barbarian army, smash enemy armies with it, then use their early siege unit to capture cities. Is it frustrating how the Horse Archer and Battering Ram are on opposite sides of the tech tree? This split makes it difficult to get both in time for early warfare. I feel that's a weak point of the civilization.

    Indonesia's unique building feels like their weak point. I never build it. A little faith from a very late and situational building doesn't seem very interesting. How can we make it more fun?

    Ethiopia's low rank is likely from the Stele bug. It should give 1 faith per population. The civ's designed as the best tall-empire religious nation. They get faith per pop, and receive a combat bonus against civs with more cities for military defense. Most other civilizations are more effective at religion as a "wide" empire instead of "tall," and that reversal makes Ethiopia unique. We could give Ethiopia better religious units to spread and defend against religion. Their UU is also a weak point. It comes very late, and is not especially interesting or powerful.

    I'm unsure why the Incas ranked poorly. Their uniques seem interesting. Perhaps they're just too weak? We could improve the Slingers.

    Brazil has no clear focus at the moment. They get gold, tourism, golden age, and military bonuses. I think they'd be more fun if their bonuses had more synergy. We could change their unique improvement to provide culture on jungles (instead of gold), which can be converted to tourism with late-game buildings. We could also replace their super late game UU with some earlier unit or bonus, or buff the UU to make it more game-changing when it does appear.

    ================

    Update: Here are some ideas for changes based on suggestions in this thread:
    • Askia - Songhai: ???
    • Hiawatha - Iroquois: +2 :c5production: Longhouses
    • Napoleon - France: unique unit that can also dig up Archeology sites (like the Conqustador's missionary ability), or possibly a unique Archeologist itself.
    • Ramkhamhaeng - Siam: farms also give 1 gold?
    • Suleiman - Ottomans: Replace Barbary Port with Sipahi, and return the Barbary bonus to the unique ability.
    • Attilla - Huns: conquered cities start with an Arena (replaces land maintenance bonus).
    • Gajah - Indonesia: ivilians start with Amphibious promotion (embarkation and bonus embarked strength).
    • Haile - Ethiopia: (bugfix) Stele gives 1 faith per population as intended.
    • Pachacuti - Incas: starts with Mining, stronger Slingers.
    • Pedro - Brazil: 50% longer Golden Ages?

    Other changes:
    • Aztecs: +1:c5food: +2:c5production: to Chinampa. (Artifical islands that don't need water might feel odd)
    • Morocco: Berber Cavalry move faster in deserts.
    • Portugal: Nau can cross oceans right away.
    • Russia: +1:c5culture: +1:c5production: Krepost.
    • Shoshone: +10% stronger Comanche Cavalry.
    • Sweden: (bugfix) their ability should no longer improve farms (an old concept).
     
  2. lockstep

    lockstep Prince

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    In the unmodded game, Brazilwood Camps also provide culture after reasearching Acoustics -- did the Communitas mod change this (besides replacing Acoustics with Architecture)? If yes, please revert to the unmodded game. If no, the camps could provide gold and culture from the start.
     
  3. Hreat

    Hreat Warlord

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    I find Brazil frustrating because they usually seem to have little or no jungle at their start, rendering the UTI useless, or you're in a jungle area where you will have no production tiles at all. the culture on Brazilwood and science on jungles kick in so late that I can be hopelessly behind by the time I get much use out of those bonuses. For the first half of the game when you're really competing with the AIs for the good expansion spots and key wonders, none of Brazil's UA/UU/UTI are helping you at all yet and a non-jungle start is the best way to compete, which seems backwards for a civ built around a UTI that can only be built on jungles (or you can restart 100 times until you get a starting area with both some jungle tiles and some production tiles, if you have the patience for that).

    Ethiopia is fine from a balance perspective. The UU is bland, but the UB and UA both work fine and provide reasonable bonuses, I'm just not sure how playing a passive/tall religion game is any fun. If they go for a tourism victory there's some synergy in that a late-game UU is helpful for killing that one AI with high resistance to influence, but I'd rather go Brazil for that type of a game as they're better at tourism and they have their own late-game UU with a tourism flavor. High faith generation on a tall empire means you spend a large proportion of your time managing missionaries, which is frustrating to me as you constantly have to reroute them to go around AI troops.

    All the Huns are good at is taking cities early, which the current versions of the happiness and warmonger mechanics highly discourage. The last time I played the Huns I conquered one neighbor by razing their second city (can't afford the unhappiness of occupying it) and occupying their capital. 4-5 AIs immediately DoWed me, insuring I would continue to rack up warmonger penalties and that I'd never be able to address my happiness problems by trading for luxuries. The penalties from taking just two cities basically lost the game for me. Haven't played them since.
     
  4. jwerano

    jwerano Wonderstacker

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    You forgot the Ottomans who also have a score of 0 so it should be 4 civs.

    Huns:
    Huns are an excellent civilization for early pillaging and for stealing workers and settlers. In my last huns game I warred 3 civs at once and managed to steal 5 workers/settlers with horse archers, pillaged all their tiles then camped units 3-4 tiles away from their city to steal more workers and settlers then intimidated the 2 city states on my continent for a grand total of 1000+ gold but after I produced 2 battering rams and almost took out the Celts capital I realized taking it would be a poor decision and I'd be much better off just producing my own settler. This really bothered me and I quit at that point. Huns would be better if city state conquest bonuses were reactivated.

    Ethiopia:
    I was unaware that the religion per population was working and believed the stele to still just give 1 faith per city. If it is working I will give them another try. Maybe others don't know yet as well. The UU is unremarkable.

    Brazil:
    Brazil is effective at getting a cultural victory I have no problem with them but I suppose hey are a bit boring. The UU comes too late. It might be good to spread the UU ability to all units, or all units during golden ages to reduce the gap between golden ages. I guess that could be interesting. Brazil would have the option to go to war during golden ages to get the golden age points but would have to balance that with not pissing civs off so much that they cant get open borders anymore to help their tourism victory.

    Ottomans:
    I don't play them because their UA still doesn't work. Please let me know if its been fixed. I see in the code that its supposed to give 5 gold per internal trade route but when I last played them I got nothing.
     
  5. mystikx21

    mystikx21 Deity

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    Is the Ottoman UA broken or is it an interface problem?

    Brazil's problem isn't the UU in my opinion, it's the early game fall-behind that Hreat describes. A jungle start will be bad unless the UI is useful sooner. A non-jungle start doesn't play much differently from anyone else and renders a unique ability useless.

    I think Ethiopia might be the passivity to the civ. It discourages both warfare and expansion beyond the already existing mechanics to discourage either. Warfare and expansion, to me at least, are fun to do as options in an empire game. This is distinguished from Venice in that Venice can still war and expand, it just does so in a very different way from other civs.

    Edit: I'd add that some of the problems with Ethiopia have more to do with changes to beliefs overall meaning you don't have much to do other than build missionaries. This is especially true with a tall civ that isn't conquering as even a building belief from piety isn't going to give you much to spend extra faith on. I'd also agree the UU is "meh."

    Huns I'd agree that CS bonuses would help a lot here. They'd also benefit from any adjusting to the warmonger penalties that can be done. Early rushes have a way of annoying everyone around such that they can become self-defeating. They're basically a "perpetually at war" civ, which limits the builder potential interest and runs into the discouragements the game offers for conquest and expansion in a frustrating way.
     
  6. jwerano

    jwerano Wonderstacker

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    I've just verified that the stele gives only 1 faith instead of faith per population and that the ottoman UA of gold per internal trade routes do not work.

    As for things to spend faith on I often pick Messiagh for 25% cheaper great prophets then stack holy sites. Even if you don't complete the piety tree just getting the one that gives +25% gold per temples and +3 gold on holy sites lets you have great faith producing tiles. Even better if you complete it for the +3 culture then use all your holy site faith to purchase great scientists or engineers in the late game. This has always seemed the most advantageous way to spend faith to me and it should work well with Ethiopia since they are very likely to have the first religion and even if they don't reach religion first with messiah they will still probably be the first to complete their religion and be able to pick reliquary for stacking more holy sites.
     
  7. mystikx21

    mystikx21 Deity

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    I'm not sure that having these actually working would greatly improve either civ, but I think the Ottoman's trade route one is more important to properly evaluate the civ.

    The Ethiopian one is is basically the yield of a wide empire's faith compressed to a smaller area with fewer cities. So the problem isn't unique to them is my point, it's just amplified a bit because they're usually going to be a bit smaller/taller. The spending on faith problem isn't the "late-game", where you can do faith buys of specialists. It's the middle game where you would ordinarily be buying (usually) pagodas and sometimes prophets or wasting faith on missionaries. I find spending faith to get more faith to be a little tedious as a mechanic. Ethiopia would be a little improved already if this problem were resolved for all civs.
     
  8. mystikx21

    mystikx21 Deity

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    jwerano, it looks like the most recent release on github addresses the Ottoman trait at least (out this morning).
     
  9. jwerano

    jwerano Wonderstacker

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    Thanks for that

    •"The Ottoman trait should work correctly now. It should create (5 + 2*era) gold in destination cities of internal trade routes by stacking a placeholder "Tribute" building in the target city."

    If this ability works as intended its very useful. I prefer internal trade routes in the early and mid game and I think this will transform many peoples perspective on the Ottomans.
     
  10. Myrion

    Myrion Chieftain

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    Brazil is overpowered if you know how to play the game. Brazilwood Camp is crap, I never use it - noone needs culture for the cultural victory, Pracinha is useless because by the time you can build them you have already won the game. I admit that I haven't played in the last 4 months or so, so I'm not up to date how feasible a CV is, but it seems that the AI builds more cities, meaning more culture meaning more tourism needed.
    If one really wants to improve Brazil, make the Brazilwood Camp buildable on forests and jungles and make it generate golden age points (direct happiness would be too powerful) or tourism. The UU has to move entirely because CV = peace. A really good synergy would be something that helps to keep the peace, but I can't think of anything that could be considered typically brazilian offhand.
     
  11. mystikx21

    mystikx21 Deity

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    That's a similar quantity to late-game ocean trade routes with rival nations, so yeah. That should get people's attention.
     
  12. Myrion

    Myrion Chieftain

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    Just played with Brazil:
    Archipelago, 6 Civs, 12 CS, King difficulty (5), Standard speed
    It took me 176 turns to win, that's the year 1160. In hindsight I could've won after ~150 turns, so I really don't get why people dislike Brazil...
     
  13. mystikx21

    mystikx21 Deity

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    The question isn't "is this civ balanced/overpowered" it was "is it fun to play".

    It might be boring to play with a civ that's very powerful (like playing a shooter in "god mode"), or boring to play a civ that has unique features that it never uses.
     
  14. Myrion

    Myrion Chieftain

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    Most Civs just make you better for a certain victory condition without changing your basic style of playing.

    Take Japan: wow, they fight better, have units that fight better and a building that lets them fight better. If you fight, you fight. With Japan you fight better.
    Take Babylon: Bowman irrelevant, Scientist slot in walls irrelevant - so you just have more academies, basically more science and nothing else.

    Many people love Babylon, when in fact it doesn't change your strategy that much.

    Brazil is very different from most other civs, mainly because you will only use a single city. You focus entirely on world wonders and you have to win the faith-race. Usually you need more cities for CV because you need the GW-slots and you might have to fight other civs to keep their CPT low. Brazil can compensate with an eternal carnival and has to balance it with smart foreign politics (1 city = very squishy).

    If you don't do war (and imo it's far more fun if you don't), you will hardly use any "special abilites, because so many are UU or XP-related stuff. With Brazil at least I have a UA I work for and I can benefit from.
     
  15. Hreat

    Hreat Warlord

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    As an aside, there are still some UAs that aren't documented on that spreadsheet or the ingame tooltips. Off the top of my head I know English ships get a +2 movement bonus, Greek troops don't cause CS trespassing penalties, Sweden's farms get +1 :c5production:... I have a notion there are others but I can't think of any more off the top of my head. Are these intended to be in the mod or accidentally left in from the base game?
     
  16. Ahriman

    Ahriman Tyrant

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    Sweden farm bonus is definitely unintended if its still in. England IMO should go back to the +2 movement bonus, the extra experience is a very weak ability.
     
  17. Babri

    Babri Emperor

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    How about adding a boost to Brazil's UA that you can improve jungles at double the rate. That would make them more bearable in the early turns & would have a good synergy with their UI.

    Sent from my HTC One V using Tapatalk
     
  18. jwerano

    jwerano Wonderstacker

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    Just started a game as Ottomans. The internal trade route gold is in fact working but the Prize ships promotion is not working. I built the Barbary port and and still did not receive the promotion on ships built afterwards. However the extra gold have improved ottomans immensely and as a player who values internal trade routes I like them greatly now.
     
  19. Thalassicus

    Thalassicus Bytes and Nibblers

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    I consider the low Ottoman votes due to bugs. I'm fixing those, so they should gain players, and I'm not too worried about them. I wasn't aware the Stele was bugged. I think I've fixed that now. There's too many leaders for me to thoroughly test nowadays so I rely on bug reports. :)


    @lockstep
    Brazilwood camps should still give culture at Acoustics.

    I agree. I feel bonuses that last a short time (like late buildings) must be much stronger than average, or they won't have the same influence as things in play longer, like an early unique building.

    @Hreat
    I agree Ethiopia's UUs is rather uninteresting. Can we make it more exciting, or should we replace it with a building?

    The Huns should be the civ capable of ancient city capture. I feel the Battering Ram is more unique than the Horse Archer (there's already many unique horse units), so we could replace the Horse Archer with some kind of early happiness bonus to assist city capture. Or we could just provide some happiness bonus in their trait as a direct buff.

    Mainly peaceful AIs should get angry at warmongers. I like to think some warlike leaders respect military might, so military leaders should try to join us if we prove our mettle in warfare, instead of hating us. These military leaders would ally with us for most of the game, then turn against us at the end. I wish Firaxis had done this. It's been very difficult to accomplish through mods... the best I've done is reduce the warmonger penalty with other warmongers. I think the game works best when 2 or more factions group up. It's less fun when all the AIs join hands. I try to guide things towards a hawks-vs-doves split.


    @Myrion
    I design the game to make average circumstances fun: standard size and speed Communitas maps with 5-8 cities. A one-city archipelago game is probably not average for most people. I suspect most people also want to use all 3 leader characteristics. Your strategy of only using 1 characteristic may be powerful, but probably not very fun for most people.

    @jwerano
    Citystate conquest bonuses should be active. I think I did that months ago.

    @Hreat
    Everything should match the spreadsheet and ability descriptions. The undocumented things you noted are bugs, which I fixed now.
     
  20. jwerano

    jwerano Wonderstacker

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    The bonuses are not working. I just conquered Lhasa 5 minutes ago in the classical and I received no faith at the moment of conquest or on the following turn.

    Horse Archer, especially the starting one allows the player to do things that other simply civilizations cannot, or not as well. In addition to being powerful it is the most mobile starting unit in the game and of the ancient era. Only the Egyptian war chariot also has 4 moves but the war chariot has the rough terrain movement handicap that makes it on average no better than a scout at exploration. It discovers more city states first, and can also intimidate them by itself. It is also the best unit in the game for stealing rivals civs workers and pillaging their tiles with its 12 strength for resisting the city attack and archer attack combo.

    It would be great if we could come up with a suitable alternative but the horse archer is incredibly useful and would be hard to beat. I guess im saying im not in favor of replacing it until we can get city state conquest bonuses working and seeing if that compensates for the issue. Or maybe we could just reduce the occupation happiness penalty for hun cities that don't have a courthouse by 50%.
     

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