Let's Vox Populi! (#3)

HorseshoeHermit

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The one big thing for me would be stability-being able to see a conclusion to the game(not necessarily a victory, moreso that everyone agrees that somebody won).
I don't know what you mean. People might leave, but, the game does say you win at the end.

I'd also really like to be able to choose which civ I play as-but I'm ok if most of us want to get a random assigned civ.
I think it's not a matter of random fairness, but stratified fairness. If people think that different civs are more powerful than others by quite a lot, we would do some kind of lottery within that tier.
But as I understand, the design goal is total balance and people perceive that to be generally true even if there's discussions of how to get closer to the goal, every update season. So yeah.... if they are balanced, then why not let us all pick? If it's about disallowing duplicates, I'm sure there's some kind of blind draft thing we can implement.

Can we have a video of this plz?
A video of the game, with mod, being played in synchronous multiplayer? I suppose one would go to the modpack subforum for a tech demo, for that. As mentioned, playing in multiplayer normal mode requires using a modpack for VP. The non-modularity is another reason I don't like it, as I do keep up with BNW games that I have to restore the environment for, in that case.
 

stii

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While the idea is to balance civs I think most people would agree there is a pretty big gap between good and bad civs. There is also the fact that the balance is for single players rather than multiplayers. Back when I used to play civ MP in a big group we did a fairly complicated system of picks and given how lnog this game could last it makes sense to to do something.

We used each player has a ban then each player is given 3 random civs to pick from.
 

DoodlesTheDragon

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I don't know what you mean. People might leave, but, the game does say you win at the end.

I think I used the wrong word-finality might have been better. Stability referred mainly to synchronous multiplayer-when I tried it it kept desyncing over and over until we just decided the save was broken(occasionally it would just break-we couldn't pass anymore turns) or unplayable. I've never managed to finish a synchronous multiplayer game. Haven't managed to get close. Then again, we always played on huge maps with 12 civs or more. That's why I really value stability in that case-can't finish the game otherwise.

If we're using hotseat, I don't think stability applies.

I'm also not certain, but we may get to a point where everyone agrees someone is fully dominant or is going to win. At that point, we should be able to vote to end the game there with an agreed upon victor rather than dragging it out to the actual victory screen. If you really would like to see a victory or defeat screen, you can just vote "no, game continues".

Essentially the biggest thing I'd like is for the game to actually reach a conclusion that isn't the game ending prematurely for some reason(glitches, everyone loses interest, etc.).

I'd like the ending of this game's story to be something like "...and then the world's great powers formally acknowledged and surrendered to the global dominance of both the Aztecs and their widespread religion, 'Spain Sucks'. The end."

Rather than "...and then somewhere around 1800 AD/CE, reality just ceased. The end."

But as I understand, the design goal is total balance and people perceive that to be generally true even if there's discussions of how to get closer to the goal, every update season.

While the idea is to balance civs I think most people would agree there is a pretty big gap between good and bad civs.

Seems there's disagreement on this. Guess we'll need to vote on a system down the line.

For my own 2 cents, randomization has the possibility that you roll the Dutch(people will be reluctant to trade luxuries with you), Venice(good luck protecting all those trade routes), and Germany(not as bad, but their UA is under scrutiny). Or some other combination of worse off multiplayer civs. Unlikely, but it could happen.

My suggestion is using stii's 1 free ban per player, then we discuss any other civs we consider too powerful before starting, and once we've all or mostly agreed upon who's too powerful, they get banned and the rest everyone is free to choose from.

Here's my civ preference if we go with allowing choices(8 civs in case 7 players want these more than me, assuming they aren't banned):

France>England>Russia>Austria>Ottomans>Sweden>China>Japan

So in that case if no one else wants France, I'm France.
 
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stii

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Your method seems perfectly fine, you want people to get the civ they want if possible. I wouldn't rank any of the civs you've picked as very top tier.

Venice is almost certainly unplayable in MP and Netherland is going to be very swingy, if no one trades their ability is bad but people on the other side of the map probably will take good trade deals and turbo charge them.
 

HorseshoeHermit

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To prove a point I may pick Nederlands.

Venice is indeed a joke. Trade routes aren't trade of anything, so the dozen of them are each an incredibly difficult to protect Civ feature that amounts to the -only- thing the Civ does, yup. And buying city states costs them the huge amount they could have made from their boosted trade mission... just to have a puppet within their Serenissima handicap. We would totally just not consider that in the random pool.

I was... out of date on people's opinions. I couldn't understand why people had ever talked about Venice being okay.

"Balanced for single player" is always a weird phrase. You mean, "balanced for your opponents physically not able to consider certain things that counter this." Well, Germany is in bad shape just working with pennies + generic civ until the Modern era, sure, but the other side, of really good warmongering for player elimination, I don't see it. I'm enthusiastic to see all the Frances and Americas really hash it out with intelligent opponents. Aztecs will be interesting with the two players able to calculate what is actually a good war on top of the War Score rebate they can get. A civ with a pure, universal bonus to combat strength, offsetting tactics, is Greece. But city states are hard to get alliances with now, it's not going to be oppressive with Hoplites before being able to do anything.
If we do use bans, I know the civ I would pick.


Probably, we'll use the Fruitydraft tool the NQ group does, and give people a handy choice after some bans. Venice is stripped outright. If no one in the game thinks more than 2 or 3 other civs are really super weak, then giving a choice of 4 civs picked randomly after 8 bans will be fine.

Sorry if the thread doesn't move to address something very fast. I'm occupied as weeks start until the hump. edit: I mean to like... mentally concentrate for doing a social/organization thing like this. Requires a certain sort of meticulousness that my mood cycles make harder for me.
 

DoodlesTheDragon

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Netherland is going to be very swingy, if no one trades their ability is bad but people on the other side of the map probably will take good trade deals and turbo charge them.

To prove a point I may pick Nederlands.

I guess there is another side of Dutch trade if The Power of Friendship(TM) doesn't work...

"Accept our delicious Truffles or die! You will be interested in a Trade Agreement with Holland!"

Sea Beggar Opium Wars ftw.


I wouldn't rank any of the civs you've picked as very top tier.

If we do use bans, I know the civ I would pick.

Anyone who is interested in banning one or more civs, please speak your concerns.

For the time being I don't want to ban any civ. At least not until I'm convinced a civ is too powerful for a Terra map.


Venice is stripped outright.

I feel like we should let one person choose Venice as a 5th option no matter what, just because it would be so hilariously embarrassing to everyone else if Venice somehow won the game.:lol::D:lol:

And if their game goes badly because they chose Venice, that's on them.

For Venice to win though, I think they would need at least a Trade Route Protection Agreement with 1 or more players.

In a civ6 game, I had an agreement with a Roman human player to protect their naval trade routes. In a 2 player game this just dooms the trade route user, but in an 8 player game, Venice could be assured of trade route safety, and the protector could be assured of cash flow from their wealthy friend.

This brings up the question of Alliances and Kingmakers: What should be allowed here?

A Kingmaker is someone who can't win themselves but can tip the tide for another to win. Ex. Russia cripples England in a war. England might decide to become a Kingmaker for Venice, helping them win the game while giving up on their own victory chances. Should that be allowed? It would certainly give incentive to be diplomatic with others and win their approval so that they might help you win the game later.
 

HorseshoeHermit

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While Civ series would be great if the Diplomatic Victory mechanics let you help yourself by helping another, that's not the game that Civ5 is. Throwing your game to boost another is unsporting, full stop. While you can't objectively tell that's what happened without the autopsy of post-game analysis, it's despicable, and I hope no one feels motivated to do it. I'm a little worried I'm even saying this.

If I wasn't interested in alliances and pacts of secrecy, though, I wouldn't be into diplomatic ffa games. It really all comes down to, you can't throw your game. Of course, you can just be bad and not know something you're doing is irrational, but the game needs you to care about, and try, to advance and win.

This setup is a contest. We're competitors. If people want to build a community AAR thing, they can make a different thread and address their ruleset. I'm setting up a game to find a winner of an enjoyed title (VP). Idealistically, making the first of a league of VP games.
You join because you care about winning, but also you care about the idea of playing to try to win (at least VP, if no other game), and value (=would have) iterations of games played together where everyone accepts everyone is trying to win. Just don't do anything that is counterproductive to that, which would include cheapening that victory, or taking actions in play that show you despise playing to win.
 

DoodlesTheDragon

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Yeah it would be very difficult to tell if someone actually did it. Hopefully it doesn't happen, although situations with 3 players left will be problematic. We'll have to cross that bridge when we come to it I guess.

Another question: Do we want to allow players to gift other players their units(can be toggled in one of the VP files)?

In a game long ago I gifted the (human)Americans some musketmen to help them fight off an Indonesian invasion. After the war America gifted them back. I got veteran troops, he got to live, but both of us still ended up having a Freedom vs Order(I was Russia) clash in the end game.

This could create some cool scenarios. Gifting a unique unit to one human so that another human fighting them can see it is basically making a statement to everyone that "yeah I'm not fighting, but I am involved in this war".

If your civ is especially good at producing units fast or with good XP, you could make yourself like an international arms market for other civs to buy weapons from. Ex. The Ottomans could sell Siege Weaponry for cheap since they can build them so darn fast, and get science for doing so.

This also boosts cultural players chances, since to get gifted units a civ needs to open their borders to their supplier.

If we do allow gifting units, and use 3/4 UCs mod, we probably should replace or modify the Ottoman Bombard since it's "only 2 builds" rule can be circumvented by gifting to other players.
 

HorseshoeHermit

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Is unit gifting really different from just joining the war? Defensively or offensively? It just means you aren't actually at war, and possibly no one will ever know you were doing it. And the other player pays the maintenance, so it's like, the ideal situation, if you're not worried about backstab.

The only thing that would be a balancing factor for it, is if sometimes there's a backstab. Relying on backstabbing to balance an option seems like the argument that concludes it shouldn't be allowed.

The idea of loaners is another thing. I mean, still not allowing unit gifts, but, the idea of trading by extending charity, or requesting help because it creates good will. It's not tough to tell apart from throwing, since no such gift should ruin you. And we would be talking about a timeline where those gifts aren't the sort that kingmakes; if it's late and that could be known, then of course don't gift things significant to winning any track. And all criticisms are put to rest if you do eventually get 'paid back', in something.
So we just need to tell gifts for good will, apart from boosting someone to ruin another.
Which leads us back to the main question, of teaming.

We need diplomacy to matter, and yet if players co-operate in battle they almost certainly would ruin any one other player. Then anyone who is winning is actually at the doorstep of losing, from players just trying to take that win. The eternal problem.
I keep saying "that's why the leader needs to get an alliance with someone else", but others may not see it that way.

We have to come up with something to play the game, before elaborating exactly our entire philosophies. That's the motive of the principle from my last post: "Play like you care about valuing that everyone is trying to win - letting people keep valuing it in iterating another game. Play like a win, by being possible, is what you would congratulate; is something you either did the best of everyone, or less."
 

DoodlesTheDragon

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Sounds like overall you're ok with it being used to a reasonable extent. That'll be two votes in favor at some point hopefully.

We have to come up with something to play the game, before elaborating exactly our entire philosophies

Yeah... I see I've been getting a bit ahead of this since you specified rules would be put on the shelves until format and what not was decided... so I'll stop for now.

Instead, here's a post which gives all my preferences in one spot. Maybe others could do the same to give you an idea of where we all stand.


Timezone - Same as you. Have roughly the same availability as well. 13:00-3:00 for us is 1:00PM to 3:00AM right?

Format preference - GMR

Session time - 21:00-1:00 would be a safe bet with me (could modify).

- Default planet? (climate, oceans, etc.) - Low Oceans, otherwise Default
- Game pace? (Normal, Quick?) - Normal
- Resources standard, legendary, or scarce? - Standard
- Handful of AIs in the mix? (Matching size if so) - Between 0 and 4(including 0 and 4)
- Time victory off or on? - Off
* How will we pick civs? - Free choice + 1 Ban choice per player + Discussion/vote for further bans

Preferred mods - Enhanced Naval Warfare for VP, 3rd/4th Unique Components

Enlightenment Era - Yea
 

HorseshoeHermit

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This week destroyed me and I am still burned out. I need to recover without feeling pressured to come back to this thread.

Please start talking amongst yourselves, because if I need to just lay down configs as settled to get participation, it's not going to happen while I'm still like this.
 

DoodlesTheDragon

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Hope you feel better soon Hermit.

Alright everyone else, what do you all feel about Enlightenment Era? Anyone wanna use it?

Anyone have their own mod they wanna suggest?
 

Rongute

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I'm pretty sure that as proposed for a GMR hotseat, it would not be using a modpack.

My preference for a first game at least would be Vox Populi as a base, without modmods such as Enlightenment Era or 3rd/4th Components. How well balanced are the Modmods?
 

DoodlesTheDragon

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That is a good question. I've never played a full game with either of them myself.

3rd/4th unique components has been getting updated regularly along with base Vox Populi (last update was Sept 21st, 2021). It is constantly getting discussion in terms of balance. It should be fairly well balanced by now-the oldest version I can find here was in July 2018 and that's version 34-but considering every civ gets different stuff, obviously there are going to be some who seem stronger than others. England can build Factories without coal, France gets Triplanes with Logistics, Japan gets a 3 Range Battleship are just a few examples of what this modmod does.

Enlightenment era (Vox Populi) doesn't have nearly as much of an active discussion on balance, and it was last updated July 2021. However unlike 3rd/4th components, everyone gets the same stuff, so the concern would be whether getting to or past Enlightenment Era first puts you too far ahead of the others. I'm sort of just assuming Hermit's played it and concluded it was balanced enough to suggest here, but maybe asking him would be the smarter choice.

Both of these mods add buildings, meaning yields will be higher than they otherwise would be... so maybe just one of these 2 mods would be better if we do use modmods.

For a synchronous game, yes I'd start with base VP, that form of multiplayer is already barely stable. For GMR? It should work as well as your average singleplayer. I'm torn, but I think I'm now leaning towards no modmods for the first game. Less things that could go wrong.
 

stii

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I think balancewise 3/4uc and Enlightenment era are probably fine but it would still be better to have things more basic. VP is already pretty complicated and MP adds an extra level to that already.

Default planet? (climate, oceans, etc.) - Default, low ocean is fine too though.
- Game pace? (Normal, Quick?) - Normal
- Resources standard, legendary, or scarce? - Standard. Maybe balanced to give everyone iron/horse but I don't think it is a huge issue.
- Handful of AIs in the mix? (Matching size if so) - probably not, balancing them to not be a push over or too hard for everyone seems tricky.
- Time victory off or on? - I can't see this ever mattering?
* How will we pick civs? - By group discussion ban anything that might be broken, then a pick order. I don't think anything is properly broken, if someone want to cripple themselves as Venice it is hard to stop them anyway.
 

STEPHEN HOFFMANN

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Food for thought. With this game taking many months if not over a year to play, how will you balance playing this and playing other games? New versions of VP will come out in the meantime. Is there an easy to way to load one config for the MP game but keep another for solo games played locally?
 
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