"Merlin" Scenario Engine (MSE)


Aug 27, 2016
Dallas, TX
"Merlin" is the project name for a Scenario Management Engine (SME) that adjusts Civ5 performance and behavior, altering the game so that it performs like it was designed to fight a 50-100 turn war/deathmatch, instead of building a civ that goes from stones to stars over 6000 years.

It really isn't a scenario, per se, but rather a tool that serves as the foundation to quickly create a brand-new scenario that will test a human player in ways that scenarios built that use normal Civ5 behavior simply can't.

This Merlin Scenario Engine (MSE) will be a highly-portable library of tools that allows a person with even limited modding skills to construct a playable scenario that will better focus on war goals rather than tech or culture or tourism. You would be able to copy the mod to your own computer, open it in ModBuddy, change the ModID, then make just a few changes and the result would be a top-quality scenario where the Ai puts up a very good fight.

Additionally, I'm developing an Excel worksheet that has several tabs to collect data. A non-computer person could fill out these data into the Worksheet, so that I could quickly implement that person's vision for the new scenario. There are several tabs, asking questions about playable civs, diplomacy, maps, etc. These data are needed to construct a meaningful, immersive scenario.

Basic structure of the SME is completed, and the first playable scenario is being developed using MSE. Each new scenario will cause a bump in the SME version number, since I expect the MSE will never really be a completed project - evolving/improving with each new scenario.


Key Features of the "Merlin" Scenario Engine: Merlin provides many processes as part of its design. It seeks to improve AI civ performance so they put up a more challenging gaming experience. It uses several different processes to provide these features:

Scenario Initialization
  • Scenario Options: Merlin offers scenarios many different options, which can easily be included in the scenario.
  • Civ5 Options: Merlin has the ability to change normal Civ5 game options as desired. These can aslo easily be included in the scenario
  • Diplomacy: sets up diplomatic relationships between major and minor civs as defined by the scenario
  • City Management: changes production in all cities to something militarily relevant – either to units or military buildings. Saves players from spending a lot of time on the first turn setting city production. Merlin’s choices can easily be changed if desired, but that is at the player’s discretion.
  • Major civ handicaps are defined. Not all civs in a scenario are equal. Some are more efficient, some are in disarray. The relative performance potential is defined by a “handicap” system for each civ. It’s also possible to adjust these handicaps if that civ is being played by a human player (generally in a downward direction, so they’ll receive less bonuses from Merlin).
  • Merlin has the ability to change the strategic resource availability on the scenario map – to make it richer or poorer or completely random, based on the scenario design.
  • Merlin can also set up any religions needed by the scenario, including assigning beliefs, holy cities, etc.

“Road to War”
  • Diplomacy: performs necessary declarations of friendships, denouncements, city state relationship adjustments, etc. – as the game prepares for the main war event.
  • Since a scenario usually doesn’t start at 4,000 B.C. some free gold, culture, and science are provided to all civs at scenario start, so players can structure their civs according to the playstyles and tastes – as if they’d been in charge of the civ for centuries. The amounts of this “free stuff” is adjustable for each civ, and human players can be awarded different amounts if desired.
  • Free strategic resources, free buildings, and specific techs can also be awarded at this time.
  • Merlin uses a scenario-defined process to award free units to civs early in the game, before the main war starts. The numbers of these units depend on the civ handicaps defined by the scenario, and adjusts for human players (usually lower).
  • This “initial mobilization” is based on formulae, and are somewhat randomized. It is also possible to spawn specific units in specific numbers at specific places on the scenario side of Merlin.

Special Turn Requirements – Things that happen only once per turn ( on player zero's turn - the human player who set up the game - even if they're no long in the game).
  • Once per turn, Merlin performs several bookkeeping tasks to keep the scenario performing to design.
  • It checks to see if any of the “standard” victory conditions provided by Merlin have been met. It also checks to see if any scenario-specific victory conditions have been satisfied. If it finds this to be the case, it will declare victory for the winning civ and end the main war.
  • Many, but not all, of Merlin’s functions don’t continue into “just one more turn” time.
  • Merlin also checks to see if the main war should be starting on this game turn. If it is, then Merlin will declare the necessary wars, and adjust all diplomatic relationships as defined by the scenario.
  • Those initial “bonuses” described in the “Road to War” section can be awarded on any game turn before the main war starts, depending on scenario requirements. If they are set to be awarded after game turn 0 (the game’s “true start”) then Merlin checks to see if this is the proper game turn, then awards those bonuses if so.
  • After the scenario has been won, and Merlin declares victory, it forces a “King’s Peace” on all civs. All wars are ended and units begin making their way to friendly territory. For the next 6 turns, no wars are possible. However, after those 6 turns have passed, Merlin removes the “perma peace” restriction, and wars can be started and stopped according to normal Civ5 rules. Think of it as the start of a new Cold War.
  • Every few turns, Merlin will “bless” a single civ with a particular event (q.v.). It’s at this point of the turn execution that Merlin decides which civ will be the “lucky” one to experience this event. Most of them are fairly benign, but there are a few that can do some serious damage – and usually at the worst possible time!

Routine Turn Management – Things that happen every turn for every major civ:
  • Once Merlin performs that once-per-turn tasks, it focuses on tasks that it must perform every turn for all major civs. It determines many of the data it will require to perform these tasks then collects those data. It determines if the active civ has too many units out of supply, and other things it will need later.
  • If the active civ is the “lucky” one mentioned earlier, Merlin will determine which event that civ will experience. It then implements those effects and informs the player about the results.
  • Merlin offers various “routine events” every 6 turns or so. These can be a “savings bond” event that provides extra gold. It could be a free Great Person, or “industrial espionage” which yields progress towards discovering your currently researched tech. It can also spawn “home guard” units near some of your cities if the main war is still going on. If the “local revolutions” option is selected, it’s also possible a city might revolt and join the enemy if the war is going very badly (usually defined by a lost original capital city and most of the original cities lost as well).
  • If there are any specific requirements relating to religion, it is at this time Merlin will perform those functions – as defined on the scenario side. As religion is so closely tied to the particular scenario, there’s not much Merlin can do without using the scenario side to complete it.
  • Merlin then checks to see if any other “scenario custom” diplomatic events are required for that turn. These can be things like “Civ A declares war on Civ B” or “Force a ceasefire” etc. These events are on the scenario side as well.
  • Campaign Management: this is one of Merlin’s core functions. This is the part of the library that determines what cities will be attacked next by AI civs. It is part of a plan defined in the scenario. This prevents AI civs from letting units wander pointlessly across the map. There are several nuances relating to campaign management (what campaign should be chosen? How long has it been going on? Is it successful? Should it be abandoned and a new campaign chosen? Etc.) It’s enough to remember that this part of Merlin decides the military focus for the AI civ through campaign management functionality.
  • Reinforcements: Merlin periodically gives free units every few turns (defined by the scenario). This is to make up for the fact that most cities on scenario maps are shells and haven’t been in existence for centuries. They also won’t have the right mix of buildings that would suit the civ player’s normal style. So, a few free units helps provide forces that normally couldn’t get trained in the short time-frame of a scenario. Of course, AI civs get different amounts, based on their handicaps, and human players can and should get less.
  • At this point, Merlin looks to the scenario side to see if there are any special unit spawn requirements for that game turn. And if so, spawns the units.
  • Movement Directives: This is the other side of the coin from Campaign Management. That earlier section determines what the objective city is for military operations, this part of Merlin actually orders various units towards that city to attack it. There are many factors that go into decided what units get these orders, but it is usually a large box somewhere near that objective city.
  • Scenarios can define a list of "core" cities for each civ - a civ's own cities it must possess before any offensive campaigns can commence. If any core cities have been conquered, Merlin will direct forces towards those cities to liberate them.
  • If there are any scenario-specific movement directives for this turn, ones not related to Campaign Management, Merlin will implement those as well.
  • If any civs are at peace, Merlin will occasionally attempt to involve them in the main war – and look for civs that have diplomatic problems with this war-shirking civ. It will then occasionally force a declaration of war on the civ by other civs that don’t like them. This helps prevent the “step back and let everyone else destroy themselves first” strategy. If a war is forced on a civ, their enemies will receive a nice tranche of free units near their borders to cause immediate trouble.
  • At this point of turn management, Merlin tries to assist AI civs, to perform tasks they should be doing, but often neglect. If any units can be upgrade, Merlin will upgrade them (but it will charge the correct amount of gold to do so). It will also look at what the active (AI) civ’s cities are producing. If it’s not militarily related, it will change the production to something that is (usually units, but sometimes military buildings). So, no Zoos will be constructed while fighting an existential war. If the AI civ is hoarding a lot of gold, Merlin will use that gold to buy units and/or military buildings.
  • Merlin will take a quick look to see if any puppet cities aren’t producing anything. If their build queues are empty, Merlin will change that to convert production into gold.
  • Every few turns, Merlin will conduct an evaluation of the current Campaign. If it determines it has gone on too long without success, it will select a new Campaign, based on various criteria.
  • Every few turns, Merlin will look at a civ’s cities to ensure the “city focus” is set to “Production” – so it’s producing as many hammers per turn as possible. And to make sure it’s not focusing on “Growth” or some other nonsense.
  • Merlin performs these functions for ever major civ every turn until a victory condition is declared.

Victory Conditions -- What ends the game?
  • There are several ways to define victory – depending on the scenario. Here are some:
  • Scenario that has a defined number of turns. Once the final turn is reached, Merlin will look at the “scenario score” and declare a winner. The scenario score is generally a percentage of “current population vs. original population.” So, if a civ has 10 cities with 10 population each, they start with 100 population. If during the game, they conquer a few cities and on the final turn have a population of 130, then their score will be 130. If they lose a few cities and their population is only 75, then their score will be 75. The civ with the highest score will be declared the winner.
  • Complete Kill: this game will continue until all a civ’s cities are conquered and every last unit is killed. If a civ has 2 enemies, then both will need to be defeated this way.
  • Capture capital. If a civ captures all its enemies capital cities, it automatically wins.
  • Capture all cities. If a civ captures all its enemy cities, but there are still units left, it will win.
  • Subjugation. A little complicated, but basically does a civ own the enemy’s original cities so that they now rule over what was 67% of the enemy population at game start.
  • Scenario Specific Victory. Whatever the scenario needs to define victory and can be coded is put here.

Events: These are the wild-card things that can happen at any point in history. The catastrophic events only happen once per game (except for storms at sea). Other events happen a few times per game, but not always to the same civ:
  • Catastrophic events: Black Death, Maunder Minimum, Storms at Sea, Supervolcano
  • Negative events: drop in city state relations, droughts, earthquakes, great fires, floods, evil opens, plagues, rebellions, treasury raids, wandering monsters
  • Positive events: boost in city state relations, free promotions, free resources, great harvests, free great people, a jubilee, a free tech award, a grand tournament.
  • Some events are a response to in-game events: If enabled by the scenario, when a city is lost, a small number of “partisan” units will spawn around it. Which means it gets harder to hold cities, and the old “only use destroyers and no army” types of invasions won’t work any more.
Other Features:
  • Merlin allows for scenario-defined unit naming convention that will rename units as defined by the scenario, to help improve the immersive qualities of the scenario
  • Fog of War: Merlin allows you to adjust the game's visibility features, so you can see more of what's going on in the game. While, this may not be historically accurate at all times, it is sometimes fun to see what other civs are doing. There's a convenient popup reached through the "Additional Information" menu button. You can easily adjust the settings to seeing everything on land tiles, everything on sea tiles (except subs), or seeing everything everywhere. Once the map is revealed, it cannot be "un-revealed." However, if you haven't saved the game you can reload a previous version to revert to the old rules of visibility.


Scenario Development Using the "Merlin" Scenario Engine:
- Merlin is a nickname for a large library of database changes and LUA code (similar to python/C# that Civ5 uses to perform many of its function) that are designed to modify the game engine's normal function. The goal is to force AI civs to act like they're in a fight for their lives over the next 20 "years" and not focus on a tourism victory 4000 years from now.
- Merlin consists of 2 basic parts: the "core" SME, which shouldn't be altered once it's locked down. And the "scenario" part of the mod. This is the section that contains all the changes required to bring a scenario to life. The way it interacts with the core SME is defined and controlled. This helps greatly improve the reusability of Merlin, while also improving game stability.
- So, to create a new scenario, you would need to complete a design of what it would look like: when does it take place? Who is involved? What are the circumstances around it that decide who wins? And so on. There is a spreadsheet available to help collect these data which will greatly speed up new scenario requests. At first it can look overwhelming, but a slow review of the tabs should be manageable for most experienced players.
- When the scenario design is completed, bringing that content into the "scenario" part of Merlin is a straightforward job of database updates and customized LUA code. Using existing examples of Merlin scenarios will save a great deal of time, especially if the functionality is similar to existing scenarios.

A key point to remember: a scenario isn't a Civ5 game anymore. The Civ5 game engine tries to guide a civ from stone tools to the stars. It makes a lot of decisions based on economics, culture, diplomacy, technology, tourism, etc. Scenarios contain far fewer game turns to accomplish things, and are generally concerned with moving an army from point A to point B and kill everything there. This requires torturing Civ5's normal game processes, and some of the tools available to do this are coarse and don't work as well as anyone would like. So, SME will conduct this abuse, doing the best it can, but the results won't perfect. I'm aiming for a "good enough" outcome where the AI puts up a fight that looks like it could have been done by a rational, thinking human player.

MSE Roles:
- Scenario Designer: This is anyone who wants a new scenario, and is willing to complete the Scenario Design Worksheet (q.v.). They will populated this worksheet as best they can, then submit it to the Scenario Developer. Computer skills (beyond basic Excel) are not needed to perform this role. Even deep Civ5 knowledge isn't required. But a certain grasp of history will help a great deal on providing the best possible data to the Developer, so he can create the best possible scenario.

- Scenario Developer: The MSE is constructed so that a person with even limited Civ5 modding skills could develop a deep, well-performing scenario from scratch. About the deepest skill required would be minimal familiarity with ModBuddy, and the ability to modify a few LUA scripts, and add some unique units to a mod. If you can do that much modding, you should be able to use SME quite easily. It is a library of tools you would use as a foundation to the new scenario/mod, and build scenario content on top of that foundation.

- Scenario Approver: As MSE will be a "branded" product, I will be the final approver of all scenarios under the SME brand. Obviously, the moddiquette being what it is, I can't prevent anyone from plagiarizing liberally from it (heck I do that a lot too), but I would ask in advance the people recognize and acknowledge SME in their mods if they're using it. It's more than vanity here, as I'm expecting a TON of errors, comments, suggestions to come out on SME scenarios, especially early on, and I'd like to collect this incredibly valuable feedback in one place, so I can use it to improve the evolving engine in the future.

Normally, especially early on, I expect that I will be both Developer and Approver on all MSE-derived products. As time goes on, and if this mod proves useful and popular, I wouldn't be shocked if other modders decided to take a stab at building new scenarios using MSE. At that point, the roles will alter slightly, but I'll still be happy to collaborate with any Developer using SME.

These posts (#1 - #24) are works in progress. I'll update them frequently as MSE develops.

As the discussion develops below, it's important to keep track of a couple of terms. When you see the term "scenario start" it is talking about what happens when you start the scenario for the first time ever (Game Turn 0, or what happens when you press the "Begin Your Journey" button that pops up at the bottom of your Dawn of Man screen). The term "game start" is more specific, and talks about that happens every time you begin your game (specifically loading a saved game, even if that happens on game turn 0).

I'm using discord as a daily collaboration tool. If you want to participate in the discussion, please join us there: https://discord.com/channels/361641784696373248/783755251088883722

OK, here we go.....
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Scenario Design Worksheet (SDW)

The SDW is an Excel worksheet any person (SME Designer) could use to provide the data required to build a scenario. It doesn't require technical expertise or deep Civ5 knowledge more than a more-than-novice player would have. This post will always contain the latest version of the SDW. Like the SME, it too will probably never be completed, because as they both mature, new and different ideas will emerge causing changes in how both of them operate. So, if you want to design a new scenario, be sure to download the latest version of the SDW here first.

There are 16 (and counting) tabs on the worksheet that ask about various areas that a scenario might include. These include posts 3-18 below. A Designer would open the SDW and begin answering questions each tab contains, to provide their "vision" for the scenario in a way the Developer could use to implement that vision. All areas that the Developer needs to fill in have a yellow background. Do not make any changes anywhere else, or they could be missed.

If you need to add rows or columns to the spreadsheet, feel free to do so. Just try to keep as much consistency with existing formats as possible, especially placing a yellow background on any data you input.

Not all tabs need be used. If your mod disables religion, then you can ignore the "Religions" tab altogether.

The columns of the worksheet have a lot of comments added. If you're unsure about what goes in to a particular cell, check to see if a comment is included in that column. It might be enough to help you complete the requirement.

Current version of the SDW:

(will be posted here shortly)
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SDW: Survey

The scenario survey is the first tab in the SDW. It provides space for a scenario designer to answer some basic questions about a scenario that are critical to help the scenario Developer properly implement the designers vision.

The data for the Survey are "top level" issues the provide the background for the mod, i.e. what year does it start? How many turns shall it run? What are the victory conditions? etc.

Fill in the data as best you can. Most of it are simple "Yes/No" questions (e.g. Disable barbrians? Disable research? Can cities be razed?, etc.). However, if there is an issue with any question, be sure to add your concerns to question #999 (at the bottom) called Comments/Suggestions).

Some of the issues about the survey:

1. Complete Kills. If a civ has lost all its cities, and the "Complete Kills" option is selected in the Survey tab, the civ's units will remain on the map until its last unit is killed. Most scenarios won't use complete kills, but if you think a civ would pull everyone in to retake the capital and put up a good fight for a few turns, you might want to keep it in.

For example, when Rome took Carthage at the end of the Third Punic War in 147 B.C., Carthage's army virtually disintegrated after the Battle of Nepheris. In a scenario of the Third Punic War, you might want to answer the "Complete Kills?" question with a "No."

However, in a scenario covering the Norman Invasion of Britain, you might want to keep "Complete Kills" as "Yes" to show how both Celtic and Saxon stubbornness made the Normans fight for domination on every tile of the map.



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SDW: Civilizations

This tab is used to set up who the playable civs and city states are. The Designer would answer basic questions about about the playable civ's names, leaders' names, unit units or buildings, etc. Not complicated stuff.

Some of the issues about completing the Major Civs table are these:

1. CIV HANDICAP. This is a critical piece of data. SME uses it to adjust bonuses, reinforcements, events, etc. It is centered around the concept that "the average civ in this game would have a CIV HANDICAP of 1.0"
For civs that don't need much help (think "free stuff from SME"), the number should be smaller. For example, if a civ should only get half as many reinforcements as average, this handicap would be 0.5 For civs who need a lot of help, the number might be 2.0 or higher.
Don't worry about which civ is a "human" player. Assume that any of the Civs in the "Major Civs" table could be a human player. You determine what a human player's CIV HANDICAP will be on the Survey tab (the "Human Player Handicap" question). SME will adjust the human player's handicap at game start.

2. Spawn Cities. These are cities SME will use to spawn free Air, Land, and Sea units. It is a city name this civ owns. SME will use this city to spawn these unit types in the specified city the entire game. If a civ loses that spawn city, SME will then attempt to use the capital for that unit type.

3. Starting Plot. This plot is a tile that serves as the "center of gravity" for that civ. In a normal game, the starting plot is the tile your first Settler unit spawns at. If a civ has no remaining cities (i.e. the "Complete Kills" option is set to "Yes") then its units remain on the map after its last city is lost. At that point, if SME wants to award Land or Sea units to this civ, it will use the Starting Plot tile as the location to spawn those units. SME will place them as closely to this place as possible, more or less within 6 tiles of the spot. SME will NOT award air units if a city has no cities - the game simply won't allow it.

The City States table is easier to complete, as city states have fewer data points that need defining. About the most challenging part of this table is deciding what icons to use for that city state, if the "Use color icons for City States?" question is answered "Yes."

The concept of Teams is a Civ5 construction. Basically, each major civ is on its own team. You only use a multi-civ team when you want two or more civs to share all techs, diplomacy, etc. They cannot declare war on each other and if one civ declares war, they all do. And if once civ makes peace a treaty is forced on all the rest. There are times in some scenarios you might want a multi-civ team, but in most cases each civ should have its own team.

If you have any comments, suggestions, or issues with this tab, then leave those in the table at the bottom of the tab. It's a great place to put any questions you might have or discuss any cells you couldn't answer.

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SDW: Diplomacy

This tab describes the diplomatic situation at the "scenario start."

This tab might look a bit confusing, but it's pretty simple. For the Major Civ table, you select one of the relationships described in cells B22 through B26 (a number from 1 to 5). Since all relationships in Civ5 are reciprocal, the worksheet automatically makes a corresponding entry for any civ you define.

The relationships between Major Civs and City States are simpler. There are basically three, listed in B45 - B47 (Ally, Neutral, War). Place any of these three relationships in the columns for all the city states the mod adds/uses.

The City States table is simpler. It only defines the relationships that all city states have with each other.

The Diplomacy Rules table is more art than science. The first two tables describe the diplomatic situation at scenario start. However, this table describes any unusual situations that might develop during the scenario. In a scenario with 5 Major Civs, and 9 City States, some examples of what these rules might be could look like these:

1. All city states remain neutral until game turn 10.
2. City State 1 thru City State 5 are at permanent war with City State 6 thru City State 9.
3. City State 1 is a permanent ally of Major Civ 1.
4. City State 1 is at permanent war with Major Civ 2.
5. On game turn 12, City State 1 becomes permanent ally of Major Civ 5

Only use one rule per cell. Place as much detail as possible, but also remember the tools that mod have to control diplomatic relationships are crude and not well-behaved during gameplay. The simpler the better!

The "War/Peace Schedule" table is your master plan for diplomacy in the scenario. When should the main war begin? Is it a perma war? When is the perma flag removed? Or not? Should any one (or more) civs make peace with any one (or more) civs? And so on.

These war and peace events are in addition to the "Main War Start" - which provides you the ability to stage-craft the diplomacy during the scenario.

If you have any comments, suggestions, or issues with this tab, then leave those in the table at the bottom of the tab. It's a great place to put any questions you might have or discuss any cells you couldn't answer.
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SDW: Maps

General Discussion: This is one of the trickier areas of building a scenario. Finding the right maps is NOT easy, but you will save a lot of time if you can find an existing map that can be customized to your scenario's needs.

There are a couple of good resources for finding maps. Searching on steam with the "Maps" tag checked will often get you off to a good start. Civfanatics also has some good maps lurking around (start looking here: https://forums.civfanatics.com/forums/civ5-custom-maps.401/)

Finding an existing map is BY FAR the preferred solution to building a scenario.

The map creating/editing tool is in the SDK and is called WorldBuilder. The current version is less capable than earlier ones. Previously you could create very large maps, but these cause so many problems with game stability, this was nerfed. IIRC, the size limit for new maps is 120 wide x 80 tall.

If is still possible to edit those larger maps, but only in limited ways.

WorldBuilder can also alter sizes of existing maps. It can "rescale" them - making them either larger or smaller but keeping (more or less) the same terrain, resources, cities, etc. Sometimes this leads to odd/unpredictable results, so should only be used if desperate.

Maps can also be trimmed and expanded (left/right, and top/bottom), but it is much easier to expand right and bottom (East and South) than the other 2 directions.

So, if you can find a map that's close, find a way to make it acceptable. In this situation the "good enough" principle applies.


Now, on to the Maps tab of the SDW.

The first table describes the "must have" cities for each civilization, including city states. If using an existing map that has a lot of cities on it, still complete this table fully - so the exact cities will be included. Add more columns if a civ needs more cities.

You only need put in what cities the scenario requires. The fewer the cities on the map, the better Civ5 runs. But you also want to include historically relevant cities to improve the immersive qualities of the scenario.

For each city, define the name, the size of the population, and any required building this city has, such as wonders. A map for a Hundred Years War scenario might include "Notre Dame" in Paris. Paris might also have Walls and a Castle, but some of the smaller French cities would have none of these.

There is a "Standard Buildings List" on this tab. Place a list of buildings all cities on the map must have. In that Hundred Years scenario, this list might include earlier Era buildings like Granary, Aqueducts, Markets, Monuments. If you include a "coastal only" building (e.g.) in this list, it will only be added to cities where it is legal for that building to exist. So, no Lighthouse for Paris, even if it's on the list.

For the "Religion" row, include the name of the majority religion for each city. This can be an existing Civ5 religion or one you add in the "Religions" tab of the SDW. Currently, SME doesn't allow for varied number of followers for different religions in a city. This might change later.

In the City States table add the same data as in the previous table. They will also use the "Standard Buildings List". Since City States needs all the help they can get, be a bit more generous with the buildings you add to them - to allow them to remain independent longer.

Remember the key point from post #1: A scenario isn't a Civ5 game anymore. There are a limited number of game turns, so you aren't trying to replicate a normal gaming experience in Civ5. You don't need a lot of Libraries, Shrines, Circuses, etc. So, add as few buildings as you possibly can. Civ5 will run better, and your Scenario Developer will appreciate it avoiding a lot of grunt work...

There is a table towards the bottom of the tab that you can paste links to any maps that are close to the map you want for the scenario. If only one link is included, that will be the main candidate for the scenario, depending on an analysis from the Scenario Developer. If you want to alter the map, include those suggestions in the columns to the left of the links.

If you have any comments, suggestions, or issues with this tab, then leave those in the table at the bottom of the tab. It's a great place to put any questions you might have or discuss any cells you couldn't answer.
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SDW: Campaigns/Courses of Action

This tab is really the heart and soul of SME. It contains the data it needs to determine how an AI civ will maneuver its forces to put up a challenging fight. While the code performing these activities is complicated, populating the tab on the worksheet is straightforward. Basically we're placing a list of cities in a sequence for SME to defend or attack.

Remember: SME will only apply any actions described in this tab for AI CIVS ONLY. The data must be included for all Major Civs, since a human may play any of them. But, during a human player's turn, these COAs, et al, will be ignored.

Core Cities: The first table is a list of "core cities." Core cities are the cities a civ prioritizes protecting. If they are under attack SME will send more units to it to help defend. The list is in priority order, meaning the city in K5 (Fr City 1) is more important to AI CIV1 then L5 (Fr City 2). So it will receive help first.

Normally you'd expect the capital to be the first city on the list, but in many cases it will be the city closest to where the enemy is expected to invade.

Not all a civ's cities on the map need appear in the Core Cities list. For cities not listed here, SME will ignore, but sometimes Civ5 game engine will move forces to protect unlisted cities if they are attacked. Use more columns if you need more than 10 core cities.

Campaigns / Courses of Action (COA): A COA is a "road map" on how a war is to be conducted offensively, and is the heart of the SME. Each COA represents a different "attack plan" - an alternative way of prosecuting the main war, by focusing on different cities or a different attack order for the same cities. These are provided so the AI civ will offer different gaming experiences during repeated plays of the same scenario.

SME will look at the first city in the list ("EnCity1"). If that belongs to this civ (i.e. it has been conquered) SME will look at the next city, and so on.

At scenario start, SME will select one of the COAs and the AI will use that list of cities to prosecute the scenario. There can be as many COAs as you want to define for a civ, but there should be at least 1. If a civ has no COAs defined, SME will not interfere with how Civ5 normally maneuvers units.

The number of COAs varies from civ to civ. A scenario might have 10 COAs for Civ1, but only 1 COA for Civ2, while Civ3 has none (they play defense the entire game). It depends on what the scenario needs.

How the COAs are used: SME will look at the list of cities in the order they're listed. Once it finds the first city on the list still owned be the enemy, it will direct a large part of the civ's military towards that city, in hopes to conquer it. SME checks every few turns and will sends new units towards the city until it has been conquered, or if one of the "core" cities listed above comes under attack. If a core city is attacked, the units moving towards the enemy city still continue moving toward it, but all new units/reinforcements will be directed toward the core city. The attack on the enemy city will continue without more support until the core city is safe.

So the order of the list is not a priority of cities to attack. It is the sequence of cities SME will direct units toward as the game progresses.

Once all cities on a given COA are conquered, SME will select another COA and start the process over again. If all COAs are used, then SME will stop directing units, and normal Civ5 behavior will return.

NOTE: you do not need to fill in all 10 cities. If only 4 are needed, list those 4. Scenarios are usually shorter than normal games so conquering 10 cities in a 50 turn game might not be possible. Also, if you need more than 10 cities, use additional columns.

A Rally Point is the name of your city where a civ gathers forces together BEFORE launching the attack on the first listed enemy city. If any "Initial Reinforcements" are spawned by SME (based on various criteria elsewhere in this worksheet), they will spawn at this rally point. Each COA has its own Rally Point, which may be used repeatedly.

How the COAs are selected: Generally speaking, SME will select a random COA for an AI civ to pursue about 67% of the time. The other 33% of the time, it will compute the most-appropriate COA, based on the civ's leader's personality (as defined in Civ5's Leader_Flavors database).

At Game Start, SME will "score" the COAs to determine which one is easiest (smallest amount of city defense), most lucrative (largest population total of all cities in the COA), and which COA is the most efficient (least amount of defense per point of population and shortest path between first and last cities).

So, a "risk averse" leader might select the "easiest" COA. An impatient leader might select the most efficient COA. A leader in love with gold might select the most lucrative. And so on.

Additionally, if a civ is making little to no progress in completing a COA (meaning it hasn't conquered a city on the list for a very long time), it is possible that SME will dump that COA and select a new one to see if it has more luck. What constitutes "little to no progress" is not yet defined, but will probably be something like "if a city on the COA hasn't been taken in (total game turns / 10) then select a new COA"

The NOTES in the title cells for the Campaigns table describe in more detail how these factors are used by SME.

If you have any comments, suggestions, or issues with this tab, then leave those in the table at the bottom of the tab. It's a great place to put any questions you might have or discuss any cells you couldn't answer.
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SDW: Events

There are two types of events: Game Events and Civ Events.

Game Events impact a certain area of the map, not a specific civ. All civs with cities, units, etc. in the impact box of the event can be affected. Game events tend to be of a negative nature. These should also be quite rare.

SME comes with a library of existing Game Events that can easily be added to any scenario. These include: Black Death (devastating plague over a large part of the map), Storms at Sea (damages/sinks ships and embarked units over a wide area), Supervolcano (damages terrain and units in a wide area, leaving much destruction to fix), Maunder Minimum (a series of bad harvests that reduce cities populations and damages units)

Other Game Events can be added to improve the playability and immersive qualities of the scenario. It's best to limit ambition when considering Game Events, as they can seriously disrupt careful war plans and introduce a lot of frustration if used to often or the impact is too severe.

Civ Events impact one civ only, no matter where their cities/units are located on the map. Like Game Events, SME also comes with a library of existing Game Events that can easily be added to any scenario. These include: Great Harvest (additional food in a certain area), A free Great Person appears, A Jubilee (an award of free gold, culture, faith and/or Golden Age progress), tech progress award (free research towards the currently researching tech), drought (a reduction of population/stored food for a given city), earthquake (destroys buildings), great fire (destroys buildings, reduces population, damages units), great flood for cities on a river or tsunami for coastal cities (similar to great fire), rebellion (certain units become barbarians), treasury raid (thieves steal gold from your treasury), Wandering Monster (a fantastical being invades your lands!), diplomatic success/failures with city states (raises or lowers diplomatic relationship with one ore more city states, depending on the scenario's definitions, e.g. a city state at permanent war with a civ won't see any improvements based on this event), Evil Omens (comets, etc.; lowers food/production/research/golden age progress)

New events of both types can be added, depending on the complexity and limited skill of the Scenario Developer. Describe any event you want added and I'll try to add it to the scenario. But, some things simply can't be done in Civ5, so if the new event is absolutely critical to the scenario, describe and alternative/approximate substitute if possible.

Also, events add a lot of "flavor" to the scenario and improve immersion, but too many can be a bore and frustration to many players. So, less is more but some is good.

If that makes any sense at all...
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SDW: Unique Units (UU)

These are units that only a specific Major Civ or City State can use. This is a common Civ5 occurrence. If there are any units you'd like to use from Civ5 describe them as well you can in the tables.

If you'd like to add a new, non-Civ5 unit as a UU, then try to find an analog from either Civ5 or a mod.

City States can also have UUs if you'd like. This can be quite helpful at times. For example, in later-Era games, where most units have a required resource, most city states won't have the required resource, so they will still field Privateer while everyone else has Battleships. So, if there's a later-scenario unit you'd like to see a specific city state have, add it to the list the unit as a new UU, but in the Special column say something like this: " Same stats as normal Battleship but does not require Oil"

If you have any comments, suggestions, or issues with this tab, then leave those in the table at the bottom of the tab. It's a great place to put any questions you might have or discuss any cells you couldn't answer.
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SDW: Reinforcements

Scenario Reinforcements Table: Since "normal" Civ5 procedures are too slow to properly mimic a wartime economy, these free units represent what would most-likely happen once a civ goes to total war. SME awards these units to Major Civs (even human civs, if the CIV HANDICAP isn't 0.0) periodically through the game. These represent a civilian population pressed into wartime service, so they won't be heavily promoted, at least early in the scenario.

Unless you specify reinforcements in the "Scenario Reinforcements" table, no free units will be spawned. If you do want to use this SME feature, you'll need to define it along the lines shown in the "Sample Reinforcements" rows.

All reinforcement events are impacted by any civ's relationship to human players. If a Major Civ is at war with a human opponent, then that civ receives an extra 50% of units. If that civ is an ally of a human player, then they receive half the original amount. If a "declaration of friendship" exists with a human player, they only receive 75%.

There are three types of reinforcements: Initial Mobilization, Recurring Reinforcements, and One-Time Reinforcements.

1. Initial Mobilization: At Scenario Start, this non-repeatable event will spawn up to the total amounts of units listed in the "Free Units" column. The actual amount of units is either fixed (If "Randomize Amount?" is set to "No", or variable with the max spawn amount as defined. There can only be one "Initial Mobilization" event in any scenario, and they apply to all Major Civs.

2. Recurring Reinforcements: As defined in the "Frequency" column, this tranche of free units awards in the exact same manner as Initial Reinforcements on every specified Game Turn. If the Frequency is 3, then this reinforcement event will occur on Game Turns 3, 6, 9, etc. until a victory is declared. There can only be one "Recurring Reinforcements" event in any scenario, and they apply to all Major Civs.

3. One-Time Reinforcements: These reinforcement events are different than the first two in that SME spawns only on the specified Game Turn, and follows the number of free units closely. If the number is 5 free Frigates, SME will spawn 5 free Frigates. "Randomize Amount?" still applies, though. These are not repeatable, so you will need a new entry for every single reinforcement event your scenario needs.

Note: CIV HANDICAP rules apply to Initial Mobilization and Recurring Reinforcements. So, if you say "Five free Swordsman units" in "Free Units" and a civ has a handicap of 2.0, they will get 10 free Swordsman units (or from 1 to 10 Swordsmen if "Randomize Amounts" is "Yes").

All reinforcements should be carefully thought out, so that the game doesn't become too unbalanced. The goal is to maintain a constant challenge to human players by bonusing AI civs throughout the scenario. So, be careful not to allow runaway armies if possible.

New Promotions Table: Occasionally, you might want to add a special capability that doesn't exist in Civ5. Generally, this might be a combination of existing promotions, e.g. +1 movement AND double attack. However, if you know of a promotion in another mod you'd like to use, place a link in the "Suggested Artwork" column to ease importing the promotion into the scenario.

If you'd like to devise a new type of promotion, describe what this capability should be in the table, including any information you can think of to make sure the promotion does what you need. There are limitations within Civ5, so not everything is possible.

If you have any comments, suggestions, or issues with this tab, then leave those in the table at the bottom of the tab. It's a great place to put any questions you might have or discuss any cells you couldn't answer.
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SDW: Unit Ranges

This table describes the types of units that SME should spawn both at Scenario Start and in the second half of the scenario. Since this can get involved, a sample table is included in the tab, to the right of the input table.

The "Starting Unit" table contains the unit name of what spawns in the first half. There are several "Combat Types" of units, as listed in column B. They should be self explanatory but the help tag shows some sample units of that Type in case it's confusing.

Put the name of the units in column C, then the closest existing Civ5 unit in column D. This will help make sure the stats of the starting unit mix properly with other Civ5 units in the scenario.

The same data is required for the "Finishing" part of the table. These are the units SME will spawn in the second half of the game. This is offered to demonstrate how countries long at war improve their units over time.

If your scenario doesn't need the "Finishing Best Unit" leave the cell values as "N/A" - in this case SME will award the Starting Best Units the entire scenario.

Remember the units defined here are the automatic awards via SME, as defined reinforcement events (Initial Mobilization and Recurring Reinforcements). If you want a different unit to spawn, that will have to be done using a One-Time Reinforcement event.

If you have any comments, suggestions, or issues with this tab, then leave those in the table at the bottom of the tab. It's a great place to put any questions you might have or discuss any cells you couldn't answer.
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SDW: Buildings

This tab allows you to add new buildings to the scenario. If added to the "New Scenario Buildings" then the new building will be available to all Major Civs and City States in the scenario. The Civ-Specific table is for buildings that only the specified civilization can build.

If you have specific icon in mind for the building, please include a link to where the artwork can be found.

As the economy is usually a non-priority in most scenarios, be judicious in adding new buildings. In most cases, they should only be added to improve immersion/civ flavoring. Wonders might be the exception to this rule, however.

If you have any comments, suggestions, or issues with this tab, then leave those in the table at the bottom of the tab. It's a great place to put any questions you might have or discuss any cells you couldn't answer.
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SDW: Techs

This part requires a bit of thought. Generally speaking, SME "expects" you to use the existing BNW tech tree, with the scenario starting at one point, and ending at another. For example, if we think of the tree as a spreadsheet, we'd think that "Agriculture" would reside in column 0, "Industrialization" would be in column 9, and "Future Tech" would be in column 17.

So, if you don't want to adjust the tech tree (and you should avoid it if at all possible, on this tab, you could define the "Scenario Start Column" as a number from 0 to 17 that lines up with the column you want to begin the game with. Same thing applies to the "Scenario Stop Column".

For a Hundred Years War scenario, you might want to start the scenario in the Medieval Era, so this means column 5. You might want to stop mid-way through the next Era (Renaissance), so the stop column would be 8.

For a Punic Wars scenario, it might run through the Classical + halfway though the Medieval Era, so start in column 3, end at 5.

If no new techs are added, SME will alter the tech tree slightly, making room in the middle of the column AFTER the defined "Scenario Stop Column" (specifically in row 5, same as Agriculture) to add the "Final, Repeating Tech". This is basically the Future Tech that civs will research after all other available techs are discovered.

The name of the Final, Repeating tech is up to the Scenario Designer, but if no name is given, SME will name this tech differently, depending on when the scenario ends. The following list shows the name SME uses based on which Era the "Scenario Stop Column" falls in.

Ancient -- Future Revelation
Classical -- Future Unearthing
Medieval -- Future Invention
Renaissance -- Renaissance Advancement
Industrial -- Industrial Progress
Modern -- Modern Advancement
Atomic -- Postmodern Progress
Information -- Future Progress

For reference, here is the standard BNW tech tree:


If you want to add techs to the scenario, you'll need to define those techs in the "New Techs" table. The key elements to watch out for are the "Prereq Techs" and "PostReq Techs" columns. The help tag has more information about how to complete this. Also, if you know of an icon that would be ideal for this technology, include a link to where it can be found.

The "Changes to Current Tech Tree" is used to make any adjustments to the existing tree the scenario needs. This includes changing the names of existing techs, or their location on the tech tree.

Be aware that moving a tech up are down a slot isn't complicated. But, anything more than this (left or right, several slots up or down) can turn into an impossible task. The relationships between techs is critical here, so be very careful about changing this.

If you have any comments, suggestions, or issues with this tab, then leave those in the table at the bottom of the tab. It's a great place to put any questions you might have or discuss any cells you couldn't answer.
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SDW: Religions

Religion is very bad for modding in Civ5. So much of the process is hard-coded and unable to change. Improperly set up religious features can easily render the game unstable, and crash. So, any new features of religion should hew closely to the existing religions in Civ5. Don't get very creative here, just build off what currently exists.

Generally speaking, since scenarios focus on a much shorter time-frame, the role of religion is greatly reduced. If possible, eliminate it entirely. If not, use existing religions as much as humanly possible.

However, it religion is essential to your scenario, SME allows creation of new religions, beliefs, and changes to existing religious features. If you want to create a new religion, fill out the "New Religions" table on this tab.

New Beliefs are more complicated as more data are required, but they also offer many possible bonuses that can enrich game play. The most common bonuses are listed in the various columns of the "New Beliefs" table. If adding new beliefs, please refer to this link and make sure any new bonus is quite similar to the ones featured here:

If you'd like to change anything about existing religious things in Civ5, use the "Adjustments" table to list them. Not much is possible, but some things can be changed.

Finally, in the past, I've used religions as a surrogate for political support. In my old Hundred Years War mod, I used 3 religions as a proxy for political support - either to the English, French, or HRE. Great Prophets became Ambassadors, Missionaries Emissaries, and Inquisitors became Provocateurs. They behaved normally, all in an attempt to change the political leanings of cities across the map. Changes like these would go into the Adjustments table.

If you have any comments, suggestions, or issues with this tab, then leave those in the table at the bottom of the tab. It's a great place to put any questions you might have or discuss any cells you couldn't answer.
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SDW: Policies

Civ5's Social Policies are powerful and varied. However, in most scenarios, the generation of culture is a very low priority. Therefore, policies shouldn't be earned very often, and in many scenarios all policies should be disabled.

If policies are critical to the scenario, it is possible to adjust existing ones or even add more. As with religions, it is recommended referring to existing policies and make the capability of any changed/new policy similar to the capabilities already existing. For reference:

The SDW allows requests to make adjustments to social policies if critical. But be aware that moving policies around the "Social Policies" popup is very limited. Significant changes to the layout require significant time and planning. It is far easier to simply disable a policy branch than make more than a change or two to any policy location. Changing the benefits to existing policies (even their names) is trivial.

So, decide how many, if any, social policies you'd want a Major Civ to receive during the expected run of a scenario. If the number is less than 5 or so, it would be best to disable almost every Social Policy branch (Tradition, Liberty, Honor, Piety, Patronage, Rationalism, Exploration, Commerce, and Aesthetics). Since scenarios generally focus on war, leaving the Honor branch available while disabling the rest should be the starting planning assumption. For a Crusades scenario, perhaps Piety and Honor would serve. And so on.

The "Free Policies at Stat" table allows you to award specific policies to specific/all civs at scenario start.

If you have any comments, suggestions, or issues with this tab, then leave those in the table at the bottom of the tab. It's a great place to put any questions you might have or discuss any cells you couldn't answer.
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SDW: Eras

To put it mildly, adding Eras to Civ5 is a true PITA. It can be done easily, programmatically, but getting the timing data (e.g. How fast can improvements be built? How long does constructing buildings take? How slow is research?) balanced can be unpleasant.

Unless it is scenario-breaking not to include a new Era, JUST SAY NO!

However, if you simply must include a new Era, it can be done, even if it will add a lot of time during your scenario testing to get the balance just right.

If adding a new Era in between two existing Eras makes this a bit easier, as you can simply select the mid-point data between the previous and following Era and generally be safe. Even adding at the front of the Tech Tree (pre-Agriculture) or end (moving Future Tech to the new Era) isn't too bad, as you can calculate a fairly useful number from the mid-point between the previous two Eras and add that to the old final Era's values and call it a day.

If you do not want to use this approach, you'll need to study up on 20 different calculations within Civ5 and come up with your own numbers. It is HIGHLY recommended you don't do this.

The Eras tab will let you enter data concerning any new Eras you want to add. It also has a location for you to make any recommendations to existing Eras. Again, changes to existing Eras should be minimized, if not avoided, but if needed it can be done fairly easily. You simply need to know what to ask for.

Say if you wanted research to progress at half the speed in the Medieval Era, that is possible. As is the time needed to complete a new building. And so on. The particulars won't be discussed here. But between google and asking around the forum you can generally find the possibilities of changes you can make to Eras.

If you have any comments, suggestions, or issues with this tab, then leave those in the table at the bottom of the tab. It's a great place to put any questions you might have or discuss any cells you couldn't answer.
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SDW: Victory Conditions (VC)

When SME starts, it disables all victory conditions. This is because it will manage declaring victory itself.

Campaigns/Courses of Action need to be designed around the scenario's VCs.

SME provides several victory conditions:
1. Complete Kill: A civ automatically wins the game if it conquers all it's enemy's cities AND kills all its units. An historical example where this would be use is Norman Conquest of Britain. In that scenario, you can easily see Saxons (and Celts!) fighting on to the last man.
2. Capture the Capital: A civ automatically wins the game if they capture their enemy's capital city. An historical example for this would be a Punic Wars scenario, since the Carthaginian army almost disappeared once the city was taken, with almost no response from the people.
3. Capture All Cities: A civ automatically wins the game if it conquers all their enemy's cities.
4. Subjugation: A civ automatically wins when they capture enough enemy cities so that 75% of that enemy's original population is under the new civ's rule.
5. Turn Limit: Plays the scenario a specified number of turns, and the civ with the highest game score wins.
6. Custom Victory: Victory is determined by conditions the Scenario Designer decides.

If you want to use any of the first 5 VCs, all you have to do is make the appropriate entries on the Survey tab. The VC tab isn't needed at all.

However, if you select VC 6 (Custom Victory), you'll need to describe what constitutes victory here. You can be as creative as you'd like, but every Major Civ needs access to a VC, a path to victory. VC's can be aimed at only one civ if desired, but it is better form to design a VC that all Major Civs can attempts to meet.

The "Custom Victory Conditions" table has several examples of what a custom VC would look like.

If you have any comments, suggestions, or issues with this tab, then leave those in the table at the bottom of the tab. It's a great place to put any questions you might have or discuss any cells you couldn't answer.
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SDW: Special Rules

This tab is the "catch all" for any changes you'd like to see so the scenario performs the way you'd like. It can be anything not covered elsewhere. If you want Settlers to be twice as expensive, make a note in the table. If you want units to appear at a different time in the Tech Tree, note it here.

Basically, any change you'd like to the way Civ5 normally runs, this is the place to make those suggestions. Use as many rows as you need.
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Future Projects/Scenarios (Merlin Versions ): Versioning of the SME will change with each new scenario. This is done to recognize it is a large, yet new mod, and significant changes, adjustments, fixes, etc., are expected all through it's life-cycle. It also helps coordinate code maintenance and new scenario development if more than one project is in the works at one time.

The current/planned versions of the SME (future scenarios) are:

V0.0 -- Basic SME mod (no scenario details included)

V1.0 -- "The Hundred Years War - The Rise of the Black Prince (1337 - 1356)" -- This 20 year scenario consists of 80 (quarterly) turns.
Steam Link: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=3077822814
Civfanatics Link: https://forums.civfanatics.com/thre...-1337-1356-ad-an-sman-merlin-scenario.686289/

This scenario has an accompanying Civ Pack (that includes the 7 playable civs from the scenario, as well as Scotland (David II), Portugal (Beatrice) and Navarre (Joan II)
Civfanatics Link: https://forums.civfanatics.com/resources/hundred-years-war-civ-pack-1337-1356.30994/

V2.0 -- "The Hundred Years War - Once More unto the Breach (1415 - 1454)" -- This 40 year scenario consists of 160 (quarterly) turns. The second mod exists primarily to test the "portability" of SME, to ensure it is properly designed to make creating new scenarios simple, which is its entire reason for existing. Careful timing records were kept to keep track of the amount of time the first, second, and subsequent Hundred Years War mods require to complete.
Steam Link: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=3099740977
Civfanatics Link: https://forums.civfanatics.com/resources/new-scenario-hundred-years-war-1415-1453-ad.31028/

This scenario has an accompanying Civ Pack (that includes the 5 playable civs from the scenario, as well as Kingdom of Aragon (Alfonso V), Kingdom of Naples (Queen Joanna II), Kingdom of Navarre (King Charles III), Ottoman Empire (Sultan Mehmed I), Kingdom of Scotland (King James I), Teutonic Order (Hochmeister Michael von Sternberg)
Steam Link: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=3099875066
Civfanatics Link: https://forums.civfanatics.com/resources/hundred-years-war-civ-pack-iv-1415-1453.31040/

V3.0 -- "The Second Punic War - Carthago Delenda Est! (218 - 199 B.C.)" -- This 20 year scenario consists of 80 (quarterly) turns, covering the Second Punic War, and the epic struggle between Rome (Scipio Africanus) and Carthage (Hanibal).
Steam Link: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=3126976116
Civfanatics Link: https://forums.civfanatics.com/resources/new-scenario-the-second-punic-war-219-200-bc.31141/

This scenario has an accompanying Civ Pack (that includes the 8 playable civs from the scenario)
Steam Link: https://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=3108724566
Civfanatics Link: https://forums.civfanatics.com/resources/second-punic-war-civ-pack.31051/

---------------------------------------- We are here ----------------------------------------

V4.0 -- "The First Crusade (1095 - 1100)" -- This 20 year scenario consists of 80 (quarterly) turns, covering the First Crusade, pitting the forces of Christendom against Muslim defenders throughout the Middle East.
Steam Link:
Civfanatics Link:

This scenario has an accompanying Civ Pack (that includes the 11-12 playable civs from the scenario)
Steam Link:
Civfanatics Link:

V5.0 -- "The Conquests of Alexander (332 - 323 B.C.)"

V6.0 -- "The Mongol Invasion of Japan (1274 - 1293 A.D.)"

V7.0 -- TBD

Note: After the First Crusade, the next scenario is not precise. Some other project may replace the ones listed here.


Future scenarios under consideration: (Scenario titles in italics have been completed. Many of these will be attempted, but perhaps not all. If you have any suggestions please let me know in the comments below)

These scenarios will use either the Ancient World at War (AWAW) or World at War (WAW) basic design (techs, units, etc). There will be exceptions, but generally speaking they will "play" about the same way.

Ancient World at War Projects:

Ancient Greece Project:
The Persian Invasions of Greece (at least 2)
The Trojan War
The Conquests of Alexander

Ancient Rome Project:
The Ascendancy of Rome (Med-wide war)
Punic Wars (1, 2, 3)
The Punic Wars: The Spanish Campaign
Caesar in Gaul
The Roman Conquest of Britain
Germania! Roman Conquest-ish of Germany

The Crusades Project:
The Crusades (2-3)
Reconquista of Spain

Medieval Wars Project:
The Dark Ages in Europe (Charlemagne?)
Mongol Ascendancy
Mongol Invasion of Europe
Mongol Invasion of Japan
The Italian Wars (François I, Henry VIII, Charles Quint)

Hundred Years War Project:
The Hundred Years War - Rise of the Black Prince (1347 - 1376)
The Hundred Years War - The French Ascendancy (1369 - 1388)
The Hundred Years War - The War of the Breton Succession (1341 - 1370)
The Hundred Years War - Once More unto the Breach (1415-1453)

Enlightenment Era Project:
American Revolutionary War
American Civil War


World at War Projects:

Belle Époque Era Project:
The Great Game (Africa? Asia?)

Great War Era Project:

WW2 Era Project:

The War in the Pacific
Allied Invasion of France
WW2 Scenario on Any Map
Operation Barbarossa (Eastern Front)
Operation Sealion (German Invasion of Britain)

Cold War Era Project:
Fulda Gap (USSR v NATO in Germany/France)
Arab-Israeli War (1967)
Korea (1950 - 1953)

Future Era Project:
First Contact (Humans v Aliens)
Taiwan Straights
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One problem I haven't started on is how to "brand" scenarios built using the SME.

For my WAW scenarios, it was pretty easy. This is cool:

The War to End all Wars [A World at War Scenario]

But this is not:

The Hundred Years War - The Rise of the Black Prince (1337 - 1356) [A Scenario Management Engine Scenario]

Since the scenario names are almost required to be longish, I'm interested in anyone's ideas about how to properly "brand" these new scenarios.

I don't think I'll try to use a single expression of cover art like WAW:

With only the letters in the top panel changing with each scenario. You want to be able to put an "attention getter" picture on this frame/brand, since that's what everyone will see when it pops up on Steam.

Also, the Art-Deco look of the WAW brand fit the time frame of that mod well. Since SME should be able to support scenarios throughout history, there probably won't be a "one size fits all" design to be found.

I'm most definitely NOT an artist, so I'm open to any suggestion on how to brand SME - both the look of the brand, as well as the naming conventions to use for different scenarios.



The following is a "work in progress" and subject to change.

SME will use a "nickname" in the future. It will be called: Merlin (I chose Merlin because I was thinking about a subtle mastermind who did all his work behind the scenes. Driving everything and everyone around him, even if they didn't know it. Just like SME!) - this may change

If "Merlin" sticks, then this will be the "logo" for Merlin (which will appear on all Scenario Cover Sheets that use Merlin):

So, the "cover art" for a scenario on the Hundred Years War (the early part, 1337-1356) might look like this:


The "logo" on the scenario name banner is the "custom icon" for the scenario. If a scenario doesn't have a custom icon, this won't appear. I'm not sure I'll keep it on the cover art, anyways. Looks a little busy, and weak.

The logo in the bottom left is the "Merlin" logo. When you see that, you know that the "Merlin Game Engine" (aka SME) is driving the scenario.

The logo on the bottom right is a "compatibility" logo. If you see the Ancient World at War logo (as pictured here), you know that the overall design of the mod (techs, units, relationships) follows AWAW design.

If you see the World at War (WAR) logo, like the one pictured below, you know the overall design follows WAW. It may not be 100% identical with WAW, but it will follow it closely.


If you see no logo or the picture below, you'll know the scenario follows normal Civ5 game design.


All branding information here is highly tentative at the moment. But, eventually SME, or Merlin or whatever, will need to be defined more fully, so that when a Civ5 player sees the logos, branding, cover art, etc., they will know the SME is in charge of providing a much better gaming experience than simple map-based scenarios.
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