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[NFP] My review of the new Secret Societies game mode.

Discussion in 'Civ6 - General Discussions' started by AvianBritish, Jul 26, 2020.

  1. Starwars

    Starwars Warlord

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    I like the Secret Societies mode, I think I'll play with it quite a lot, but there are things about it that annoy me in terms of the design. And it just makes me doubt Firaxis' playtesting, even though Anton specifically said that SS was tested a lot in the livestream they did. Really? Then why doesn't the AI even use its army of Cultists against me? Seems like a pretty basic thing.
    And I don't understand why they would make Ley Lines a strategic resource type where you can't build on top of them. That alone makes me way less likely to go Hermetic Order.

    Voidsingers are very powerful and are also fun to use. It's the only one I've played with for an entire game so far and yeah... definitely super powerful. Owls of Minerva seem pretty good but haven't tried them that much.

    Haven't tried the Vampires at all.

    I like SS waaaay more than the Apocalypse mode. Even with some problems, it just feels like more thought went into this.
     
  2. Pfeffersack

    Pfeffersack Deity

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    Well, probably unless some special coding is done (which I would support for gameplay reasons here) the other alternatives would be a luxury ressource type (where you can't built on top, too) or a bonus ressource (which gets removed, when building on top)
     
  3. Datian

    Datian Warlord

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    People speak of Voidsingers with Russia but I think it's even more frightening with Mali.

    Let's build a city in absolute desert, hopeless and forlorn. One more city/holy site/suguba triangle, without even a river, run double adjacency for those districts and build a monument..
    Without the Voidsingers you'll get :
    - 20 faith (6 from city center, 7 from HS, doubled)
    - 6 gold (3 from suguba, doubled)
    - 2 culture

    With them you'll get :
    - 24 faith (+4 from the obelisk)
    - 10,8 gold (+4,8 from Voidsingers)
    - 4,8 science
    - 6,8 culture
    That's of course without the population itself, nor the district buildings, nor the trade route which you'll send abroad.

    And this costs you what, 200 faith to buy the settler ?
     
  4. Kwami

    Kwami Emperor

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    The AI often has Void Relics, so they must be doing something with Cultists. I guess they could just be losing them to war or disasters, though.

    I think that's intentional, though. You aren't supposed to build on the Ley Lines. They exist to collect bonus yields from Great People and to provide adjacency bonuses to your districts. Why would you want to build on that tile and destroy those bonuses?
     
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  5. UWHabs

    UWHabs Deity

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    I think the flaw with ley lines is that they're a little like geothermal fissures - they can give you some nice adjacency bonuses, but are like mountains in that you can't build on them. But as it stands now, ley lines are just kind of meh, and bordering on annoying, until the industrial era when they actually start giving you legit yields.

    I think the Hermetic order would be better balanced if all the ley lines bonuses happened to be in their atomic bonus. So basically, in the modern era, you see all these ley lines on the map that provide you large yields and bonuses to nearby districts.

    And then in the other eras, you would need to give them other bonuses, but it feels like there should be enough alchemical/magic type bonuses to science that you could give that would make sense. Ley lines are just too late to be the "main" bonus for the order.
     
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  6. Zaarin

    Zaarin Chief Medical Officer, DS9

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    I'm actually a little annoyed that some of the bonuses are locked behind the Atomic Era, because I have never seen the world era progress later than Modern--and even Modern is rare.
     
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  7. OmegaDestroyer

    OmegaDestroyer King

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    Of the Singers, Order, and Vampires, surprisingly enough, I enjoy the Vampires the most. While the singers have really powerful passives, I find the cultists tedious to use. The Order is finicky but can generate some great science yields.

    The vampires are ridiculous. I like how they start off weak and turn into absolute monsters later on.
     
  8. Pfeffersack

    Pfeffersack Deity

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    The only AI action I have seen with them is movement with the goal of clustering them around cities. Never seen them having used the inspire disloyalty ability after that. So the reason the relcis are handed out is that they sooner or later get destroyed, when the Voidsinger AIs went to war.
     
  9. Pietato

    Pietato Emperor

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    • Level 1 - Reveal the Ley Line resource on the map. Ley Lines give standard adjacency to all specialty districts.
    • Level 3 - For every Great Person earned, Ley Lines receive +1 yield equal to that Great Person's district type. Great Admirals and Great Generals earn +1 Science.
    This is the problem with the Hermetic Order. Their level 1 is absolute rubbish, and their powerful bonus comes too late. Should be major adjacency and give some yields at level 2.
     
  10. tzu

    tzu Chieftain

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    OTOH, their level 1 is absolute perfect. If you combine it with a "dummy" governor, which soaks up the 3 unutilized promotions, you have another small reason to be less unsatisfied with the challenge the game provides.
     
  11. Pietato

    Pietato Emperor

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    The AI can pick it...
     
  12. Deadly Dog

    Deadly Dog Warlord

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    I'm trying a Sanguine/Earth Goddess/Kupe with Apocalypse Mode as well. Vampires and Toa work really well together. Ocean travel is best. Learning the hard way how Vampire Castles work, a nice level 2 ability.

    The yields that get transferred to the capital are locked in when the castle is built, sadly, so some planning if you want to build one in your territory. Try to get the Marae up first, fertilize any woods/rainforest with Soothsayer, install Reyna with Forest Management first. My third castle should be in a twice-burned rainforest with Reyna, Marae, and a zoo. Sadly I missed Chichen Itza by an embarrassing 6 turns (second fire was unintentional and killed off half my pop), but I will have Cultural Heritage. I will screenshot that castle when I get it, maybe tonight.

    Edit: by then I may also be able to see if the Toa/Vampire debuffs stack.

    I did get an invitation to the Owls before I settled my first city. You can take Amani right away it seems. I held off to get Pingala on turn 10 when I settled.
     
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  13. Kibikus

    Kibikus Warlord

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    My early impressions of the secret societies and some ideas for balance:

    Voidsingers - seem quite powerful
    • Level 1 - reduce the faith to +3 (or even +2). It would still be a good early building. The slot should be for relics only.
    • Level 2 - with the faith reduction from L1, it might be OK. You could also reduce it by 5%.
    • Level 3 and 4 are probably OK. Could change Cultists to only get relics when they use all charges (instead of also when getting killed - creating a way to counter them).
    Owls of Minerva actually seem decent for now, I can't think of changes that are necessary yet.

    Hermetic Order needs a boost, especially early on.
    • Level 1 - I'm thinking something related to Great People, since they boost ley lines later on. Maybe +2 GPP/turn for adjacent districts, in addition to the standard adjacency. Also maybe some changes to the way ley lines spawn.
    • Level 2, 3 and 4 may be fine for now, I haven't tested the Level 4 project extensively though.
    Vampires - I'd like to see some more bonuses, maybe some yields, right now all you get is Vampires and Vampire Castles. Could be a combat bonus to barbs, could be something like culture from kills (I know Gorgo has it, but we've seen the precedent with Ethiopia and Voidsingers).
     
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2020
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  14. Breadsmith

    Breadsmith Warlord

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    Scythian Vampires are practically immortal due to the 30 heal on kills and bonus str against wounded units. They did struggle to keep up with thw cav though. And I didn't notice any bonuses from GG.
     
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  15. tzu

    tzu Chieftain

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    Depends on how you implement it. You can e.g. attach a modifier to the Secret Society as well as to a new Governor and so make it exclusive to Humans or AIs if you wish (set OwnerRequirementSetId of that specific entry into Modifiers to "PLAYER_IS_HUMAN").
     
  16. The Civs 6

    The Civs 6 Warlord

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    I'll take back what I was saying about the Voidsingers being indisputably the best. Sanguine pact is up there. Free 30 strength unit in Ancient age? That's huge. I still think the old gods monument + 20% is more impactful, but reasonable minds could disagree. The vampire castles are also neat, although not incredible.

    I still think the other two are undeniably worse than these. 1 economic policy in the ancient/classical age? That might be better than the others in turn 150, but from my experience econ. policy slots aren't really useful until you start getting those adjacency multipliers in the middle ages (I find you can cycle between the ones you need with minimal inefficiency before that). unpredictable adjacency bonuses (that I assume being "standard" are just +1?) there's no way that's close. And I don't need to tell anyone that early game bonuses are much more impactful.

    On a different point the Vampire castles really feel "Endless Legend"-y to me, and not in a bad way. Not to say they ripped them off or anything, but as I remember the cult faction in that game has a similar mechanic. Definitely a lot of fun. Very pleasantly surprised with how secret societies turned out overall. I could do without the Civilopedia entry that talks about vampires in culture though.
     
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  17. UWHabs

    UWHabs Deity

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    If you're talking about which one gives you the best bonus on turn 20, then yeah, an econ slot there is pretty useless (you get what? +2 gold from the trade route bonus). It does become pretty useful when you can slot in both the +50% settler policy and the +1 production per city, or later on when you can start running multiple of the district adjacency card slots. Whether it's more useful than the +4 faith per city with a monument, I don't know.
     
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  18. Pfeffersack

    Pfeffersack Deity

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    Don't forget that the extra economic slot can indirectly converted into another military one by picking a different goverment (Oligarchy instead of Republic or Autocracy instead of Oligarchy)
     
  19. Deadly Dog

    Deadly Dog Warlord

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    Don't count out the Sanguine Pact just yet. peaceful game, Kupe/Earth Goddess here's my first Castle in the Medieval when I didn't know what i was doing:
    Spoiler :

    Medieval Vampire Castle.jpg
    The castle was initially on neutral terriitory and the yield was established at that time, medieval era.


    Knowing better what to expect, I pulled this off for the industrial era:
    Spoiler :

    Gothic Vampire Castle.jpg

    Sadly I did not get Chichen Itza, nor was I able to ply the Earth Goddess bonus even with Reyna/Forest Management, so there's definitely room for improvement. So this yield is transferred to an otherwise lacklustre capital with now 3 vampire castles feeding it has 123 production with no IZ no encampment no Campus but Apadana Pyramids and Casa de This is How I Rule The World :smoke:

     
  20. tedhebert

    tedhebert Emperor

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    Tile yield porn:lol::goodjob:
     
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