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Limiting Exploration

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Exploration in the Civ Games is too unrealistic, and this is a bad thing. In the standard Civ model, it's very likely you can only meet 1-3 players in your starting position. However, if 'every tile has people', that raises the faction number to interact with to dozens, hundreds, or even thousands (depending on how many tiles there are). Since interacting with communities from the geographical range of France to the Urals would be an immense task, the idea would be to limit the amount of exploration one can do. The farthest your polity's borders stretch sets a limit measured in tiles of how your units can move. Beyond that limit, you lose sight and control of your units until they wander back in the limit. The limit is lowered by having more people in the unit, a consistent supply chain, and poor communications technology. It is heightened by better communications technology and less people in the unit.

Also the map beyond your Unit Travel Limit gets distorted over time.

This also helps prevent stupid military invasions. Without 'every tile has people', this would have to be toned down somewhat.
 
As to irrealism, on the time scale of civilization where early turns are centuries and decades, realism is hardly a relevant question, and the complaint is not applicable to the nature of the game.

But if we must be concerned by it, we can note that your units have time to transit back and forth between their current location and your cities several times over (in fact in earlier turns their children and grandchildren have time too), carrying message and new. The commonly mentioned idea that this kind of world knowledge would not be possible prior to modern mapmaking has been debunked before on these forums, many times : modern mapmaking, while more efficient, is simply not a condition of preserving geographic knowledge, and even oral tradition has shown the ability to preserve geographic knowledge of vast territories. It's not a perfectly detailed satellite map, but that more a matter of ability to present the knowledge in a certain manner than an ability to actually preserve the knowledge. Hyper-realistic details were, for most of history, simply not important information to preserve (until navigation beyond the sight of land became common), compared to a general idea of landmark and routes to be encountered between point A and B. The complaint of irrealism is no more or less founded than against anything else in Civ.

The claim of this irrealism being a bad thing is entirely founded on the idea that "every tile has people" is a desirable outcome for the game, and I do not accept that premise. Civilization's heart and soul is as a 4X game: that means the four pillars of the game are exploration, expansion (ie, expanding your empires by founding new cities), exploitation and extermination. The proposal to put inhabitants on every tile that can be negotiated with would significantly hamper, as you've just outlined, two of these four pillars (which happen to be my favorite), and for what? For the so-called realism of a filled world? Thanks, but no thanks. Moreover, having every tile be its own faction as you just suggested literally involve thousands of factions in the game even on relatively small maps. Even if those factions are limited in their ability to do anything, and interact only with the major playable factions, that still grossly increase the number of possible interactions on every turn of the game, and the attending gameplay calculations. More powerful computers can likely handle it, but is this really a worthwhile use of that increased power? I would not tend to think so.

A more populated map (and more flexibility for the factions that do exist - the current goody huts, barbarians and minor civs - is a desirable goal, but "every tile has people" is an excessive overreaction to the current emptiness of the map, one that may be suited to the call of realism, but that is not a good option in matters of gameplay.

As I do not concur with you on the problem, I find the solution an entirely unnecessary limitation on gameplay that would harm what I enjoy about the game without bringing any benefit I have the slightest interest in.
 
As to irrealism, on the time scale of civilization where early turns are centuries and decades, realism is hardly a relevant question, and the complaint is not applicable to the nature of the game.

But if we must be concerned by it, we can note that your units have time to transit back and forth between their current location and your cities several times over (in fact in earlier turns their children and grandchildren have time too), carrying message and new. The commonly mentioned idea that this kind of world knowledge would not be possible prior to modern mapmaking has been debunked before on these forums, many times : modern mapmaking, while more efficient, is simply not a condition of preserving geographic knowledge, and even oral tradition has shown the ability to preserve geographic knowledge of vast territories. It's not a perfectly detailed satellite map, but that more a matter of ability to present the knowledge in a certain manner than an ability to actually preserve the knowledge. Hyper-realistic details were, for most of history, simply not important information to preserve (until navigation beyond the sight of land became common), compared to a general idea of landmark and routes to be encountered between point A and B. The complaint of irrealism is no more or less founded than against anything else in Civ.

The claim of this irrealism being a bad thing is entirely founded on the idea that "every tile has people" is a desirable outcome for the game, and I do not accept that premise. Civilization's heart and soul is as a 4X game: that means the four pillars of the game are exploration, expansion (ie, expanding your empires by founding new cities), exploitation and extermination. The proposal to put inhabitants on every tile that can be negotiated with would significantly hamper, as you've just outlined, two of these four pillars (which happen to be my favorite), and for what? For the so-called realism of a filled world? Thanks, but no thanks. Moreover, having every tile be its own faction as you just suggested literally involve thousands of factions in the game even on relatively small maps. Even if those factions are limited in their ability to do anything, and interact only with the major playable factions, that still grossly increase the number of possible interactions on every turn of the game, and the attending gameplay calculations. More powerful computers can likely handle it, but is this really a worthwhile use of that increased power? I would not tend to think so.

A more populated map (and more flexibility for the factions that do exist - the current goody huts, barbarians and minor civs - is a desirable goal, but "every tile has people" is an excessive overreaction to the current emptiness of the map, one that may be suited to the call of realism, but that is not a good option in matters of gameplay.

As I do not concur with you on the problem, I find the solution an entirely unnecessary limitation on gameplay that would harm what I enjoy about the game without bringing any benefit I have the slightest interest in.
this is a lot of words for 'i am st00pid poopo and disagree'

Joke aside, I agree. I should add that my complaint with irrealism comes from the irrealism (supposedly) making the game world feel 'empty' and 'too developed' at the same time.
 
You put effort into your idea and post, I should put effort into disagreeing with it, as tempting as it often is to condemn.

As to "too developed", we're in a "you can only have two out of three" situation : On-map gameplay (most of the game, and especially city growth, takes place directly on the map), Conflict-centered maps (smaller maps that force civs to compete for land from the early game), and a slower development of the world.I'd rather we do away with conflict-centric maps, but the devs in their infinite wisdom are really married to that one, constantly cutting down on map sizes to try to max out how badly civilizations are forced at each other's throats ; and I agree with them that on-map gameplay is the way to go - the less of the game happens on separate screens, the better.

Making the world feel less empty is a wortwhile pursuit, but I think "every tile has people" is massively overcompensating for that. Turning barbarians and goody huts into more interactable factions, and perhaps somewhat increasing their frequency (but not much), should be more than enough to be a reasonable outcome. And in terms of interaction, given that a number of these minor civilizations would not be expected to last very long, this should not cause a need to limit exploration.
 
Just a little comment or two.

First, on the 'fill every tile' I would point out that no matter how you slice it, a tile represents a variable amount of territory. With 1UPT, it represents anything from about 200 paces (the range of a self-bow) to a kilometer or less (the width of the central area of an ancient city) to X kilometers of open terrain. That last is the important one, because without anything like a city built on it that is the tile that folks want to 'fill' with people.

But it's already filled.

The average village or camp covers much less than a single kilometer. Even add a few fields or a pasture for nomad horses and it's still less than a kilometer. There's plenty of room for everybody - at least in the early game.

To ring in history (no,no, four times, no!!!) yet again, in most cases when 'civilized' folks moved in, the 'less civilized' (i.e., in this instance, Non City Building) folks simply moved out. It was a lot easier than fighting, and (in game terms) there was always room in the next tile or two.

So, there is no need to explicitly 'fill' any tile with people: they are already there, and who they are will probably change long before you complete the Ancient/Classical/Medieval or even Renaissance turn, so any label or definition you tried to put on them would be like trying to label a single fish in a salmon stream during migration - possible, but not really very useful.

Second, I completely agree that what the game needs is better representation of those concentrations of 'other people' that ARE important and can interact with the Civ-sized groups on the map. That includes, IMHO, making the 'goodie huts' more permanent (stay on the map in some form after you contact them) and 'Barbarians' much more flexible: the eternally-hostile shtick got old about two versions of Civ ago, and it doesn't help the new Millennia game at all, either.
 
However, if 'every tile has people', that raises the faction number to interact with to dozens, hundreds, or even thousands (depending on how many tiles there are). Since interacting with communities from the geographical range of France to the Urals would be an immense task, the idea would be to limit the amount of exploration one can do.

But if we must be concerned by it, we can note that your units have time to transit back and forth between their current location and your cities several times over (in fact in earlier turns their children and grandchildren have time too), carrying message and new.

First, on the 'fill every tile' I would point out that no matter how you slice it, a tile represents a variable amount of territory. With 1UPT, it represents anything from about 200 paces (the range of a self-bow) to a kilometer or less (the width of the central area of an ancient city) to X kilometers of open terrain. That last is the important one, because without anything like a city built on it that is the tile that folks want to 'fill' with people.
To elucidate the flaw in the TS's view, this a map of the World in 2000 BC, with colouration by broad governing/social structure/substistence type, which gives a good idea of varying population densities and settlements.

World_in_2000_BC.svg.png
 
I think a key point to have "goody hunt/barbarian outpost" is to implement them as neutral and movable. Allowing players to exploit them the way we wanted though our interaction with them. One of the points already made is that have too many of them would limite the exploration and expansion aspect of the game, so this would turn a possible nuisance into an advantage.
 
Just a little comment or two.

First, on the 'fill every tile' I would point out that no matter how you slice it, a tile represents a variable amount of territory. With 1UPT, it represents anything from about 200 paces (the range of a self-bow) to a kilometer or less (the width of the central area of an ancient city) to X kilometers of open terrain. That last is the important one, because without anything like a city built on it that is the tile that folks want to 'fill' with people.

But it's already filled.

The average village or camp covers much less than a single kilometer. Even add a few fields or a pasture for nomad horses and it's still less than a kilometer. There's plenty of room for everybody - at least in the early game.

To ring in history (no,no, four times, no!!!) yet again, in most cases when 'civilized' folks moved in, the 'less civilized' (i.e., in this instance, Non City Building) folks simply moved out. It was a lot easier than fighting, and (in game terms) there was always room in the next tile or two.

So, there is no need to explicitly 'fill' any tile with people: they are already there, and who they are will probably change long before you complete the Ancient/Classical/Medieval or even Renaissance turn, so any label or definition you tried to put on them would be like trying to label a single fish in a salmon stream during migration - possible, but not really very useful.

Second, I completely agree that what the game needs is better representation of those concentrations of 'other people' that ARE important and can interact with the Civ-sized groups on the map. That includes, IMHO, making the 'goodie huts' more permanent (stay on the map in some form after you contact them) and 'Barbarians' much more flexible: the eternally-hostile shtick got old about two versions of Civ ago, and it doesn't help the new Millennia game at all, either.
1. I can't really remember that one Civ6 hex is a size of what military organization level? if it is too big for one company, i'm not sure if it is equals a size of, brigade or regiment ?
2. Does this mean that there should be a system to tame and assimiliate 'barbarians' without fighting and conquerings ? (and what is a mechanism for this? active or passive?)
 
Next time on CivFanatics... Limiting... Extermination...
The war system is so complex it takes years to even begin to figure out how it works. This complexity is matched with equal parts depth, meaning you can be doing everything right and still lose due to a feature you never knew about.
 
To elucidate the flaw in the TS's view, this a map of the World in 2000 BC, with colouration by broad governing/social structure/substistence type, which gives a good idea of varying population densities and settlements.

View attachment 688593
although the execution is lacking, the idea behind it was to make a sliding scale between barbarian tribes and goodie huts and player/non player civilizations. so, the difference between a tribal village (goodie hut) and one of your cities is a matter of degree, very little in terms of kind.

of course in a civ game there would still have to be main players.
 
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The more dynamics you have in any game, the better.

In this case, that means the current Rigid Distinctions of Non-Civ entities on the map: Barbarians Always Hostile, Goodie Huts Always Ephemeral, and City States that all start/appear in 4000 BCE (except in Barbarian Clans, which was a tiny step towards A Better Way) is one of the areas that Civ VII should try something better.

Like, a 3-tier system of political entities: Settlements, City States, playable Civs

Settlements - which comprise both 'Barbarian' camps and Goodie Huts - all the same Settlement Graphic (at first), but some are hostile, some are friendly, some are neutral. Scouts can negotiate with them (with a strictly limited set of options) to turn Hostile into Neutral or Friendly, (and, of course, Other People's Scouts can try to urn them Hostile towards you) and Friendly can gift you with all kinds of Good Things. Even, possibly, join your Civ as a 'town' or tile or more population.

And if a Settlement is left alone long enough, it might, under some specific in-game conditions, turn into a City State. For that matter, if a Civ gets into enough trouble (Dark Ages with prejudice) one or more of its cities might break off and not just become Free Cities, but new City States.

The point being that what you see all over the map at the start should not define the game: you might start and end with the same Civs, but the number, location, and type of Settlements should change and the number and types of City States, so that you should have to be always alert to What's New? as the game progresses.
 
The more dynamics you have in any game, the better.

Sorry what? This is sorely mistaken; sometimes a game's simplicity leads to better gameplay... not everything needs to be complicated.
For example, you could argue that the "always aggressive Barbarians" are easier to understand for beginners, they serve a constant threat to early game expansion (as opposed to the possibility of peace-out the Barbarians, which would remove that), and they are more convenient to handle than the would-be alternatives (imagine having to juggle your relationship with all the different Civs, city states and now also Barbarians and Goodie Hut Tribesmen).

While it's easy to glance at a system and name a hundred ways to make it better by making it more realistic and interesting, you do need to give the game designers some credit, you can't just fill everything with hundreds of dynamics, or the game will get incredibly confusing, sometimes not always for the better.
Not saying that is the case here, but this line of thinking is just terribly mistaken.
 
Thanks for sharing, @GeneralZIft ! Reading across the general forums for Civ6, I see so many folks for whom Civ6 is their first game in the franchise. I expect that many will be introduced to Civ7 as their first Civ game. The base systems for each of the 4 X's need to be simple enough to get the player wanting, "just one more turn."

Back in Civ3, a goody hut had multiple outcomes: a map (meh), some gold, a tech (yes!), a settler (YES!!) or a trio of angry barb warriors (no!). I would support goody huts being more mixed. I would even support a game mode (optional) where small settlements are more variable. Given that it would involve more complex coding, I would even be willing to pay for it as DLC.
 
Sorry what? This is sorely mistaken; sometimes a game's simplicity leads to better gameplay... not everything needs to be complicated.
For example, you could argue that the "always aggressive Barbarians" are easier to understand for beginners, they serve a constant threat to early game expansion (as opposed to the possibility of peace-out the Barbarians, which would remove that), and they are more convenient to handle than the would-be alternatives (imagine having to juggle your relationship with all the different Civs, city states and now also Barbarians and Goodie Hut Tribesmen).

While it's easy to glance at a system and name a hundred ways to make it better by making it more realistic and interesting, you do need to give the game designers some credit, you can't just fill everything with hundreds of dynamics, or the game will get incredibly confusing, sometimes not always for the better.
Not saying that is the case here, but this line of thinking is just terribly mistaken.
Not sorely mistaken to me, obviously. But I see your point.

Go, Checkers, Chess are all relatively simple games (it has been said that you can learn the rules to Go in 5 minutes and then spend 50 years learning how to play it well) that have endured for centuries - but in each of them, you have an extremely simple, geometric map and only one opponent (Fun Fact: Chess started out as a 4-person game of 2 2-person teams: that's why each side still has 2 knights, 2 bishops, 2 rooks). The simplicity is 'built in' so to speak.

But there is no reason to build in equal simplicity in Civ - or any other computer game where the computer can/should do the drudge work for you.

And I would argue right back that 'having to negotiate' with aggressive barbarians is less of a chore than having to constantly defend against them - witness numerous posts on these forums over the years of how much of the early game winds up revolving around the Barbarians rather than the other Civilizations. Aggressiveness in Barbarians would not be eliminated, only made an Option rather than a Certainty, and an Option that you had some (emphasis: Some) effect on.

And the Option of being able to trade or buy Resources from Settlements would go a long, long way towards reducing the Resource Rage Quit that occurs so often when you roll up a map with no Horses, Iron, Aluminum, Oil or other 'necessary' Resource, nearby so Dynamic Settlements instead of the current rigid Barbarian/emphemeral Goodie Hut would help to alleviate that problem, too. - And note, 'alleviate', not 'solve' - you would still have to work to turn the Settlement Friendly to trade with it if it didn't start out Friendly, and any opposing Civs might well be working equally hard to turn it Hostile to you.

At the very least, after 20+ years of Eternally Hostile Barbarians and ephemeral Goodie Huts, some alternative needs to be explored. We know the aggravations attendant on the current system: we may hypothesize the good or bad effects of an alternative, but we won't know until we try it.

Full Disclosure: in the past year of so, when I have played Civ VI, I always play with Barbarian Clans and a Mod that turns Free Cities into City States. The results aren't everything I would like, but it produces a much more enjoyable game (for me) in which I have the Option to hire mercenaries from the barbarians (and I freely admit, 'mercenaries' frequently comprise half my army by the end of the Classical Era in most games) or buy them off and cannot be sure which City States are in the game from beginning to end.
 
Not sorely mistaken to me, obviously. But I see your point.

Go, Checkers, Chess are all relatively simple games (it has been said that you can learn the rules to Go in 5 minutes and then spend 50 years learning how to play it well) that have endured for centuries - but in each of them, you have an extremely simple, geometric map and only one opponent (Fun Fact: Chess started out as a 4-person game of 2 2-person teams: that's why each side still has 2 knights, 2 bishops, 2 rooks). The simplicity is 'built in' so to speak.

But there is no reason to build in equal simplicity in Civ - or any other computer game where the computer can/should do the drudge work for you.

And I would argue right back that 'having to negotiate' with aggressive barbarians is less of a chore than having to constantly defend against them - witness numerous posts on these forums over the years of how much of the early game winds up revolving around the Barbarians rather than the other Civilizations. Aggressiveness in Barbarians would not be eliminated, only made an Option rather than a Certainty, and an Option that you had some (emphasis: Some) effect on.

And the Option of being able to trade or buy Resources from Settlements would go a long, long way towards reducing the Resource Rage Quit that occurs so often when you roll up a map with no Horses, Iron, Aluminum, Oil or other 'necessary' Resource, nearby so Dynamic Settlements instead of the current rigid Barbarian/emphemeral Goodie Hut would help to alleviate that problem, too. - And note, 'alleviate', not 'solve' - you would still have to work to turn the Settlement Friendly to trade with it if it didn't start out Friendly, and any opposing Civs might well be working equally hard to turn it Hostile to you.

At the very least, after 20+ years of Eternally Hostile Barbarians and ephemeral Goodie Huts, some alternative needs to be explored. We know the aggravations attendant on the current system: we may hypothesize the good or bad effects of an alternative, but we won't know until we try it.

Full Disclosure: in the past year of so, when I have played Civ VI, I always play with Barbarian Clans and a Mod that turns Free Cities into City States. The results aren't everything I would like, but it produces a much more enjoyable game (for me) in which I have the Option to hire mercenaries from the barbarians (and I freely admit, 'mercenaries' frequently comprise half my army by the end of the Classical Era in most games) or buy them off and cannot be sure which City States are in the game from beginning to end.

Yes, and to some extent I agree. Just cautious that;
1. Added complexity isn't always the best since
2. Having to negotiate with Barbarians all the time might be tedious (really depends on execution, hence caution)
3. Blurring the lines between generic Barbarians and City-States to the point where they're basically the same thing and you have to contend with dozens of "independent peoples" can
4. Lead to oversaturation for player options and player chores (having to handle City State quests and Envoys, now imagine handling Barbarian friendliness levels or some other mechanic)

I will concede that:
1. It would be cool to "remotely" gain resources from outside your empire, through Barbarian camps or Goodie Huts, somehow
2. It has been quite a while since any significant change to this system, so a little overdue.
3. Fireaxis was probably been testing the waters with that Barbarian Clans game mode.

Anyway - as I will digress: my point is that even if a system is simple, complexity isn't always the best idea, and I'm only saying that because I like to think that beginners need to be able to play this game :)
 
Yes, and to some extent I agree. Just cautious that;
1. Added complexity isn't always the best since
2. Having to negotiate with Barbarians all the time might be tedious (really depends on execution, hence caution)
3. Blurring the lines between generic Barbarians and City-States to the point where they're basically the same thing and you have to contend with dozens of "independent peoples" can
4. Lead to oversaturation for player options and player chores (having to handle City State quests and Envoys, now imagine handling Barbarian friendliness levels or some other mechanic)

I will concede that:
1. It would be cool to "remotely" gain resources from outside your empire, through Barbarian camps or Goodie Huts, somehow
2. It has been quite a while since any significant change to this system, so a little overdue.
3. Fireaxis was probably been testing the waters with that Barbarian Clans game mode.
:)
You have hit on exactly the points that have to be very carefully considered in changing any Civ game system.

1. Completely agree, complexity for the sake of complexity is Bad Design. Period. But more options for Gamer Decisions that have real consequences is not necessarily bad, as long as that fine line between Making Decisions and Being Overwhelmed by Options is not crossed.

3. Barbarians and City States would never be the same thing in-game (although, a Barbarian City State in addition to the current Religious, Military, Economic types, etc would be an intriguing addition . . .). City States should always be in a 'separate tier' from Settlements, with more options for interactions of trade, religion, politics, etc. As an example, you could hire 1 mercenary unit from a Settlement, you could hire an entire Army from a City State (similar to how Barbarian Clans works now)

4. IF the worry is that a more dynamic and complex system may overwhelm starting players (and I agree, this is a real concern: a too-steep learning curve simply causes many players to not even start up the curve) then parts of it could be made 'toggleable' as part of setting the Difficulty Level of the game. Play on the lowest levels of difficulty, and all Settlements, for instance, become strictly Passive: 'Barbarians' will attack if you come close, but not spawn hordes to come after you, or you could turn Settlements off entirely and only interact with City States. As an aside, I think the game needs more Difficulty Options than merely how many Bonuses the AI gets against you.

And I sincerely hope that Barbarian Clans was a 'toe in the water' for some fundamental changes in the Barbarian/Goodie Hut system they've used since the last century: it's one of the most fundamental systems in the game, present from start to near finish of any game, and until Barbarian Clans there hasn't really been much change in its functionality since Civ 3.
 
Yes, and to some extent I agree. Just cautious that;
1. Added complexity isn't always the best since
2. Having to negotiate with Barbarians all the time might be tedious (really depends on execution, hence caution)
3. Blurring the lines between generic Barbarians and City-States to the point where they're basically the same thing and you have to contend with dozens of "independent peoples" can
4. Lead to oversaturation for player options and player chores (having to handle City State quests and Envoys, now imagine handling Barbarian friendliness levels or some other mechanic)

I will concede that:
1. It would be cool to "remotely" gain resources from outside your empire, through Barbarian camps or Goodie Huts, somehow
2. It has been quite a while since any significant change to this system, so a little overdue.
3. Fireaxis was probably been testing the waters with that Barbarian Clans game mode.

Anyway - as I will digress: my point is that even if a system is simple, complexity isn't always the best idea, and I'm only saying that because I like to think that beginners need to be able to play this game :)
I will say that the Barbarians Clan mode was made because changes to barbarians were highly requested by the fanbase.

Friendly "barbarians" in my view would be no different than the current goody huts that we have now, so I don't see personally see it being any more complex than that.
 
I will say that the Barbarians Clan mode was made because changes to barbarians were highly requested by the fanbase.

Friendly "barbarians" in my view would be no different than the current goody huts that we have now, so I don't see personally see it being any more complex than that.
The biggest change to 'Goodie Huts" would be keeping them on the map after contact, most of the time. If they gave you a Worker/Builder or Settler or Population Point in your nearest city, they would disappear, the assumption being that the eager inhabitants of the Settlement migrated to the Bright Lights of urbanism. The rest of the time they would remain on the map, potential Trading Partners if they happen to have access to a Resource or are even manufacturing something you need - after all, the Maikop Culture (non-urban) of the Caucasus was providing bronze tools and weapons to the Middle Eastern 'civilized' states in the early Bronze Age, and may have been the conduit for introducing the chariot to them from its Central Asian origin.
 
The biggest change to 'Goodie Huts" would be keeping them on the map after contact, most of the time. If they gave you a Worker/Builder or Settler or Population Point in your nearest city, they would disappear, the assumption being that the eager inhabitants of the Settlement migrated to the Bright Lights of urbanism. The rest of the time they would remain on the map, potential Trading Partners if they happen to have access to a Resource or are even manufacturing something you need - after all, the Maikop Culture (non-urban) of the Caucasus was providing bronze tools and weapons to the Middle Eastern 'civilized' states in the early Bronze Age, and may have been the conduit for introducing the chariot to them from its Central Asian origin.
Yes, I meant bonus-wise they would be similar. Also being friendlier right off the bat would make their progress towards becoming city-states easier.
 
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