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New Beta Version - Feb. 9th (2-9)

Discussion in 'Community Patch Project' started by Gazebo, Feb 10, 2020.

  1. Hippie_Peace_man

    Hippie_Peace_man Chieftain

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    A point system seems gimmicky and boring. I don't want to feel like I'm playing a board game, I want it to feel like real diplomacy. For example, what I do is raise taxes while the vassals are doing well financially and lower them when they are doing poorly financially. I sometimes go as far as give them gifts if they are doing very poor (vassals will still be "guarded" with me, though, no matter how generous I am with them). It might be better to have something more interactive like that, wherein raising taxes while they are financially well-off doesn't affect how content they are as much as if you raise it while they are worse off and cutting it while they are doing poorly financially is more rewarding than if you did it while they were doing well financially. Perhaps that's already how it works.
     
  2. Omen of Peace

    Omen of Peace Prince

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    No! We asked for the removal of the worker because it favoured certain starts (farmland) vs others (forest/jungle) - and it was almost a downside in the latter case, a gold sink of 1 gp/turn until they got tree-cutting tech (assuming they had a plantation luxury and not a camp one).
    That point still stands - let's not revert that change.

    Same for the removal of AI growth bonus: I still think it's justified because it makes it easier to balance per-pop rewards.
    I think those are the two main AI nerfs that took place in the last year?

    It seems to me that the drop in difficulty came with the change to Settlers (min. 4 pop + lose 1 pop). Before the change, I would get forward-settled quite regularly on Immortal, and the AI would quite clearly spit out settlers much faster than I could. Nowadays I expand at roughly the same rate as them.

    So perhaps the AI does need a little boost right at the start (before the A/B/C-based instant yields kick in) to give it a leg up on humans, but let's proceed carefully. Perhaps start with just +10 F/P/G and +5 C/S when founding the capital on Immortal (and +50% that for Deity)? It may seem very small, but they'll get to pop 2 faster (hence pop 3/4), get their shrine slightly faster, etc...
    Keeping in mind that IIRC AI used to have almost insta-Shrines at some point (thanks to an instant prod bonus) and it was pulled out because it distorted the religious game.
    For the rest, raising A/B/C should do the trick.
     
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2020
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  3. SuperNoobCamper

    SuperNoobCamper Prince

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    -It's not a hyperbole or an exaggeration at all, in my experience the hassle of managing & baby sitting a crumbling empire and the soft backstabs gold theft, advanced spy actions, WC proposal against you they are capable of and will do is not worth it unless you are going for a diplo victory.
    -Seriously, vassals create armies ? :) i'd rather use their cites as a citadel to station my own units it and it would do a much better job at defending against other AI attacks than relying on them to create a couple of units ..... also not being able to enter their cities or use it as a road is a big deal.
    -Trade routes yields late game are a joke to be completely honest, ITR with nationalization maybe too strong ? is the way to go all the time.
    -Military levy is a nice bonus making vassals slightly better but again is 2-3 units every era worth it ?
    -Happiness boost is pretty much the only bonus that makes a vassal worth keeping IMO.
    -You don't get monopoly bonuses from vassals unlike puppets and if you go on a conquest spree you are almost always getting imperialism that boosts both puppet yields to 40% and monopoly bonuses which are pretty big boost if you went wide enough.
    -Tourism bonus ? You don't need to be influential with a puppet city ... elimination and puppeting = one less civ needed for a cultural victory.
     
  4. Recursive

    Recursive Emperor

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    Alternatively, I could adjust the diplo AI logic to make them more likely to revolt, particularly if mistreated. Not sure there's a need for a radical change, and if other civs could steal my vassals after 50 turns by trading with them, I'd never create vassals - I'd just wipe everyone out.
     
  5. SuperNoobCamper

    SuperNoobCamper Prince

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    I like this approach :lol::lol:
     
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  6. tothePAIN

    tothePAIN King

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    I concur with noobcamper. Vassals are decent but they also are annoying with their soft backstab actions. Most of the time, given the changes to the happiness system, where it's per city, their cities are more valuable to me as puppets than as my vassal's cities. With Imperialism, I get 40%f the yields from a puppet city. With a vassal, only 20%... they cost money, cause other civs to declare war on me more often.
     
  7. civplayer33

    civplayer33 King

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    Have you tried spreading your Religion to them? Religion is by far the greatest factor in the Vassal's contentedness; sometimes I would even use a Great Prophet and heaps of Missionaries for this, because, while it's certainly a great investment, it also provides a great benefit (both to contentedness, which is also an opinion modifier, and to the normal "we share the same religion" modifier that you get); doing that as well as making sure we always have a TR between us (boosts contentedness), never using the Demand function with them (reduces contentedness) and keeping my trade modifier high (sometimes requires giving gifts), not pushing taxes up too much, as well as generally trying to be nice often allows me to have them display a friendly approach, though not always.
    I don't think it's a radical change at all...we're not throwing something away, but simply adding another option, and I've argued that the willingness on the part of the Vassal to accept this sort of deal should strongly correlate with his contentedness...so it's not like your vassal would jump on the first opportunity; it can also be made such that the trade deal is impossible while the Vassal is Content.
    The problem with simply making revolts more likely is that those revolts aren't really meaningful in a lot of cases...you will just crush them and then either revassalize or wipe them out. With the liberation war mechanism, which would simply be a new trade option, like the Voluntary Vassalage option, you, as the Master, would now have to fight a much more significant enemy, while at the same time not having to conquer your former Vassal at all...just win the war against the larger opponent with a decent Warscore and the Vassal will be automatically recapitulated to you, which means you have another 50 turns of assured peace with him "for free"...which gives you time to either milk him dry with taxes, or, this time, actually make an effort to please him so he doesn't accept such offers again.
    Not really a fair comparison to count the Imperialism bonus while ignoring the +25% bonus from Iron Fist, which ends up being a bigger boost; them getting other Civs to declare on you simply depends on your behavior and it's pretty easy to change that and the money thing is simply false, as I already pointed out...Puppets costs massive amounts of money while Vassals give you money way before you get to the maximum tax rate.

    Actually it is hyperbole, and you're giving me more to refute now, which is quite tiresome, but here we go...who said you need to manage their empire? If their Cities get captured then so what? You don't like Vassals anyway so why would you care? Spy actions and WC proposals can easily be avoided if you simply make a slight effort to be nice to your Vassal, which overall is still far less effort than managing Puppets, where you have to make sure the improvements, defense and road/railroad networks are sensical; plus you typically need at least one annexed City per 5 or so Puppets for better management of the area, which means even more micromanaging...this is why I'm calling hyperbole: the idea that a Vassal is more micromanaging effort than some Puppets and an annexed City or two is simply false.
    As I already pointed out, someone else capturing your Vassals' Cities does not increase their Warscore with you, so it doesn't even matter that much if this happens, unlike if those Cities were your Puppets, in which case you'd be in big trouble if the bulk of your army is currently fighting on the other side of the planet...with a Vassal you now at least have time where the opponent is busy capturing his Cities without increasing his Warscore toward you. Also, you can use their Roads and Railroads as if they were your own and you can even build Roads and Railroads in their territory to go around their Cities. And yes, they do create armies; I didn't say they create the best army in the world, but their armies are by definition infinitely better than a bunch of Puppet's armies because Puppets have no armies.
    This is ridiculous...if you think there is only one viable late game strategy then go post in the balance forum but don't try to drag this issue into it. I can get 500+ GPT from ITRs late game without even doing anything to boost this...with some effort this value can be doubled or more; hardly nothing...which is why the statement "they're a joke" is just more hyperbole.
    If it's not worth it why is it a nice bonus? I advocate for removing this anyway.
    lol...not even going to engage with this argument...see above and below.
    As I stated already above, counting the Imperialism bonus without counting the Iron Fist bonus is not a fair comparison, as the latter actually ends up boosting you more. Yes, you don't get additional Monopolies if you suck at waging war; if you're clever, however, you will take your future Vassal's Cities such that you get the Monopoly by conquering the right Cities...for some reason I manage to do this almost every time and I'm not even the best player.
    You also don't get any Growth bonus or Gold from TRs to Puppets. The Tourism bonus, combined with the bonus from the Diplomat that you automatically get and the Open Borders that you can now easily negotiate and keep and many other things, like easy TR etc. etc. is what makes it a walk in the park to Influence that Civ without any special effort whatsoever, so this doesn't impede your CV attempt at all, but actually makes it easier, because you now have a closeby and safe target for your ITRs that yield lots of Gold, Growth bonus and Tourism Insta-yields, which are distributed to all Civs.
     
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  8. Recursive

    Recursive Emperor

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    Capitulation is, in most cases, an alternative to wiping out the civilization entirely. In order for this to be useful, you need to know with sufficient certainty that your vassal is not going to randomly turn on you and go to war, cutting off all your trade routes and deals with them (particularly if you're sanctioned).

    If the benefits of vassalization are not consistently controllable (other civs being able to steal them away by trading with them is not controllable) then most players would choose to eliminate the vassal entirely.

    Making content vassals unable to rebel creates a loophole for human vassals (which do not use a vassal treatment system).

    Furthermore, a system like this requires the AI to be programmed to make suboptimal decisions based on vassal treatment level, because logically most capitulated vassals would want independence regardless of treatment, unless they'd be wiped out. I have a personal distaste for this kind of thing when it isn't used to lower game difficulty, but aside from that I think it would be a frustrating mechanic as you proposed it, because people would get annoyed if other civs could swoop in and take their vassals if they weren't content every time 50 turns went by.

    Also, a human player could exploit this by switching your AI vassal and then never making peace.

    If they become a voluntary vassal of the other civ they can then leave after 10 turns and gain independence, so what you're proposing is essentially a third type of vassal (not truly belonging to either civ) with a significant amount of new code.
     
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2020
  9. Recursive

    Recursive Emperor

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    I can understand the desire to make vassal revolts more interesting and I think it could be fun to allow other civs to support a rebellion, but they can do this already by providing gold and resources or attacking the master while a revolt is in progress.

    If a vassal revolts, they could perhaps try to become a voluntary vassal of another civ. I think a mechanic like that would work better; honestly, being able to push around your vassals and demand things from them is part of the fun, and the hostile spy/WC actions and potential diplomatic repercussions are sufficient punishment for mistreating them. If mistreatment allows other civs to steal your vassals I don't think most people would find that fun, not to mention it would be a lot of work to implement and goes against Putmalk's original intent.
     
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  10. civplayer33

    civplayer33 King

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    I disagree with pretty much everything in that statement: firstly, the Vassal provides many benefits, which can be enough justification for "getting" him even without sufficient certainty that he's going to turn on you; secondly, even with how it works now you don't have that certainty, since he can, in fact, turn on you once he fulfills the conditions; if we implement the impossibility on Content status then you can create your sufficient certainty as well. Thirdly, if you're sanctioned and have no Vassals then you can only trade with City States (unless that is disallowed as well), which are much further apart and therefore even more dangerous to trade with...only with Vassals can you have a trading partner with "sufficient certainty". Fourth, it's not true that the alternative to vassalization is wiping a Civ out in most cases, even after reaching a Warscore of 100, particularly if you're playing Autocracy and thus get a bonus to your Warscore accumulation; I have managed to vassalize a Civ after capturing only one of their Cities, for example, while wiping them out would have taken a lot more effort so without a vassalage system I would have simply peaced out...often times you want to end the war and sometimes you actually have to, because someone else is attacking you, so you don't even have the time and resources to finish off the first Civ, because you need to bring your forces to the new enemy; here you would certainly vassalize even if wiping them out was the intention and you don't like the vassalage system. In fact, most wars where I win with a large Warscore are wars where I don't have any interest in wiping the Civ from the map, which would even be true if I couldn't vassalize them; for me a very successful war is one where I got what I wanted (e.g. strategic location, resource, vassalage, capital, holy city etc.), significantly weakened my opponent and did it with conquering as little as possible.
    Wrong, as I already laid out above.
    Humans also don't use the approach system or opinion system, yet we make it work. Furthermore, human vassalage is awfully rare. Lastly, the human still has the ability to decide if he wants to accept another Civ's "liberation war" offer, which will include an evaluation of how he's been treated by his Master and how powerful the offering Civ is (doesn't make sense to accept if you'll just lose the war and have to be revassalized for a minimum 50 turns again), which is, after all, what the AI would do. I personally don't care too much about Content status making liberation wars impossible or not, as long as it makes it far less likely, but given the rarity of humans being vassalized to AI at all, I'd say let's not die on this hill when trying to make humans be exactly like AI in their choices...after all, you concede in your diplomacy thread that it can make sense to deviate from this (admirable) goal in some cases.
    Apart from the repeated hyperbole of "Civs swooping in to take your Vassals every 50 turns", which I've addressed above, the current system is actually far worse in this regard, because the AI, unlike the human, can't make deals with other players to prepare for the "Great Liberation" after the conditions are met. If I was a human and had to submit for vassalage with an AI, I would absolutely make a deal with another human (or AI if I can) to engage in temporary vassalage with them (if that's what they want in exchange) on the same turn that I declare independence if he will help me kick my old master's butt. The AI doesn't know how to do that, because it can't pre-agree on future deals and can't plan ahead this well, so this deal system is likely more AI-friendly from the (anthropomorphized) perspective of the Vassal AI, because it at least gains a powerful ally to make sure the liberation attempt doesn't just end in a pointless, suicidal rebellion with the world watching, but has an actual powerful ally to help it.
    No, what I propose, as I have stated before, is a new kind of trade deal, which would be very similar to the existing "Voluntary Vassalage" deal; the resulting Voluntary Vassalage would just be a normal Voluntary Vassalage, so there is no third type of vassalage involved here. If @Gazebo likes this idea but doesn't have time for implementation I could even take a look at implementing it myself, since it's really similar to the Voluntary Vassalage deal anyway.
    It's not just about making them more interesting but also about making them less OP for warmongers, which they currently are; I simply want to "nerf" Vassals in a more interesting way. I think the fact that I and many others haven't seen revolts in a long time is a good testament that this would be an area where things could be improved.
    Except the AI doesn't do that...it theoretically can, btw., as Voluntary Vassalge is already an existing feature, but this would require the AI to be extremely lucky, as it can't "feel out the waters" beforehand and just has to hope that a closeby AI wants war with their old master anyway and has been preparing for it just in the last turns...my proposal eliminates this problem because it implicitly coordinates the two AIs, especially with regards to the bigger, deal-offering AI. Regarding the second point...I've already addressed that, but a quick summary: in my experience it's definitely possible to have your vassals take the friendly approach, which means they often won't spy on you at all (at least until the game is close to be concluded) or if they do you can successfully ask them to stop; if you push them around, on the other hand, they will eventually be able to demand freedom anyway, so all my proposal would do is introduce some more risk before that point; why only "some more risk"? Because getting 25 Warscore as a warmonger isn't usually that hard against the AI and neither is keeping your Vassal Content. Moreover, it's simply completely unrealistic that the Vassal would just sit there and take your mistreatment for centuries if there are Civs willing to aid him free himself...ending it all in a possible pointless rebellion a millennium later is just sad. I have no problem with players going the more "sadistic" route and torturing their Vassals (though I typically don't) but if they do then there should be more risk to it; the main motivation for all of this, however, is to apply a bit of a nerf warmongering in a more interesting manner.
     
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  11. Kim Dong Un

    Kim Dong Un The One & Unly Supporter

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    I'm not on my pc to post screens yet, but shortly after vassalizing Babylon, he informed me that China (who was my first vassal) was plotting against me despite me treating her well. Good to see that the AI was at least thinking about it. Vassal behavior was actually solid overall. As another poster mentioned, I often treat them kindly with gifts to help them get back on their feet initially, but I usually set taxes after a while and my behavior towards them generally differs based on my relationships with them previously.
     
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2020
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  12. Kim Dong Un

    Kim Dong Un The One & Unly Supporter

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    Heathcliff has brought diplo a long way over the past several months, and I think we should continue to observe, report, and allow him to refine all the changes; let's let the dust settle a bit before we kick up more storms.

    Vassal behavior and mechanics can be addressed in the future, but for now I think we should keep it simple be removing the happiness and military levy.
     
  13. Cokolwiek

    Cokolwiek Prince

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    I do not want to once again be the contrary vote, especially since many of you have better experience in playing vox populi but while I think vassalage is in need of a nerf I do not think it is too strong right now. It is pretty historical and I would much rather see little bonuses, more of a flavour than than powerful game bonuses from vassalage.
    First of all happiness from vassals - maybe it shouldn't stay the same exact mechanism but I understand the concept behind it. Gaining a vassal is a major score to your civilization, its mythology, its national pride - population is proud about its achievements and civilizational superiority. It gains economic and political expansion and domination, with of all vassal's resources, maybe slave labour, at least colonial status - population gains opportunities to travel and do business there. It is also strategically important as buffer between your enemies and your core lands - population may feel safer, especially military will be happy about increasing operational maneuverability and strategic depth. Furthermore, this may be the strongest case, if you role-play brutal empire, which authority warmongering basically is, your population may be demanding further slaves, territories, spoils, your businesses may demand securing cheap resources deposits. Both in econemical (your fiscal and economic system may depend on conquests) and cultural (society demands wars and destroying lesser nations). Some population hapiness should be reflected in succesful conquest and vassalizations.
    We have tons of historical examples: Roman Republic slowly turned into militaristic madness, its whole economic and social system rooted in and stabilized by enslavement from conquest, its gradual political vassalizations of Greek states, its brutal, genocidal hatred against Carthage (the third Punic war is commonly regarded as the first deliberate genocide in western history). There is no falsehood in Augustus being a warmongering, cold-hearted AI. Rome was extremely bigoted, ethnocentric culture.
    France after war of 1871 became obsessed about Alsace-Lotharinge and aggression against unified Germany as it was rightfully fearing its potential.
    Napoleon need to secure French strategic interest in continental blockade pushing him to gradually conquer and opress whole Europe, finalized in his well-known military disaster in Russia and Spain revolts.
    Britain, France, and most of the western nations during 19th century and their imperialism when corporations and societes demanded rescources and cultural dominance over large swaths of the world, completely disregarding native population and their cultures and well-being.
    Don't let me even start about what Germany did during WWII. And you don't even need to include with Holocaust (6 milion civilian deaths), which was more hidden from general citizenry and cowardly killing far from the front lines. Most of Wehrmacht willfully participated in war crimes before Holocaust started during 1941 Einsatzgruppen actions (around one million mostly civilian murders) and circa 2 and a half million starved Soviet prisoners of war.
    Look up Commisars Order and Hunger Plan or generally clean whermacht myth to find out yourself. And this is not bloody ancient era, it is civilized Europe some 70 years ago.

    The second thing is military levy: I would gladly take away more powerful bonuses from vassalage like yields and let military levy stay. It is profoundly historical and its less of a bonus than yields.
    Roman Republic in third and fourth century, 75% to 50% of its economic strength and personnel in the legions through allies in Italy, many strategic resources (which silver, iron ore and grain from were in classical era) from vassals in Iberia, Galia, Sicily.
    Holy Roman Empire and most early to medieval kingdoms were not centralized states, but rather collection of vassals, from which central authority collected economical tribute to sustain themselves and military levy.
    Napoleon's army was composed in 1812 in half by levies from Batavian Republic (vassalized Netherlands), Helvetian Confederacy (vassalized Switzerland), puppets in Italy, Rhine Confederation (vassalized western Germany), and puppeted Poland as Duchy of Warsaw.
    Germany controlled Romanian and Hungarian armies on the eastern front, Italy, Slovakia, and even neutral-though-friendly towards Nazi regime Spain sent divisions.
    I think it would create great synergy if we nerf conquering, leaving mostly puppets for conquered lands (that should not provide you any military capacity, or very little) and leave only your native land, one or two annexed cities, militaristic cs, levy from vassals, and levy from authority a source of military units. It would be, yeah, that is one of my favourite words, historical, without sacrificing balance and fun, and in fact achieving grater challenge and more dynamic play to warmongers.

    To those who still have vassals on guarded: you are doing something wrong. Initially they should be guarded. I don't collect any taxes from them, but I also don't send trade routes, I don't convert them to my religion, and I do demand some garbage technology from the route I ignore like archeology. And after 50 or 100 turns of vassalage they become friends. You fight common enemy, you sometimes protect them, and they grow to realize that because they are tied to your economic sphere your advancement is to their benefit. I gladly let them have luxuries I have several copies of and some crucial military technology for free. It is nothing for you, it is a lot for them. Anyway concious diplomacy pays off.

    If anyone is interested, I played a deity, standard, standard, continents while giving every AI (not every player, myself not included) both a free worker and a free settler.
    I also handpicked civs which I consider the most powerful as AI in vp: Arabia, Mexico, Mongolia, Assyria, China, don't exactly remember others. I was Indonesia.
    Tldr: the times of menacing, hyper quickly developing vanilla Deity was back.
    Game was 200% percent more dynamic than usually. I felt pressure again. Mexico was in medieval while many other nations and me were still in ancient. China had 17 pop Beijing when Assur was 6, and was besting me by 10 techs. Diplomacy felt beautifully alive as we were very close and I felt obligated to send strategics I couldn't use myself and gold feed my ally Arabia, who had capital 4 tiles from my city and was carrying the bulk of fighting against Genghis and Assurbanipal.
    Nearly every nation was at war for the third time by classical. I made two big mistakes and was forced to concede to joint assault of Assyria and Mongolia which I forward settled. Both settler and worker may be too much but it certainly brought that every-decision-matters and think-or-they-will-just-crush-you vibe.
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2020
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  14. Cokolwiek

    Cokolwiek Prince

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    I don't get it. Sorry, I am not native English speaker. Do you mean mass crucifitions of naked prisoners at public display?
     
  15. ryanmusante

    ryanmusante Regular Supporter

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    No, the display of phallic symbols. Fascinus, fascinum.
     
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  16. Bryan317

    Bryan317 Warlord

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    ...I've been drinking too much tonight lol. I'm sure a Google search of Rome displaying Male genitals everywhere will answer this one for you. And if you actually look like your picture I'm extraordinarily embarrassed LMAO. I was about to delete the post but you had already quoted it. Haha
     
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  17. Cokolwiek

    Cokolwiek Prince

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    Well, as a devotee of k-pop, which is more moderate culturally, or chaste (to the point of absurd), so to speak, I can say that any look on western advertising, music videos and performances and generally proliferation of sexual promiscuity and pornography, prove we are not so behind ancient Romans. I do not consider it wrong in itself though.

    Back to vp:
    I agree that nerfing warmongering or vassals through revolts is a bad idea, it is tedious, predictable and is basically free experience for the player.
    How about some your own troops rebelling? It is painful because you loose a real assets, which you have to replace. Giving them first strike also would hurt as you could lose further troops. It would also have another dropback as you wouldn't be viewed as so stable and strong dut to internal rebellions and falling supply cap which could affect AI decision making like DoWing you while you are weakening. It would add a challenge to managing a wide empire gained through blood and iron.
    Military consipracy against a weak ruler I think would be quite fitting theme for a inherently kraterocratic regime as a response to failure at war or not keeping happiness high enough. All those divide and rule countermeasures, separatists conflicts and local rebellions fit it.
    Can it be done through coding?
     
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  18. Gizmoman

    Gizmoman Chieftain

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    Am I alone in experiencing the AI as unreasonably hostile? I will admit that I haven't been around here for a long time but I remember that there used to be ways to maintain friendships with the AI. Nowadays I'm at best constantly at war with 2 AI while the rest are either denouncing me or just not liking me and at worst at war with every AI in the game. Yes, maybe an AI offers peace every once in a blue moon, but then it's either replaced by another war declaration or just re-enters the war when the peace treaty is over.
     
  19. JamesNinelives

    JamesNinelives Emperor

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    I understand better now, thanks. Yes, I agree!
    Indeed.
    Oh damn, that may be the worst case that I've seen! XD
    Granted I've never had that much money before lol.
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2020
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  20. JamesNinelives

    JamesNinelives Emperor

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    It seems like most of us (sorry SuperNoobCamper) can perhaps agree on a minor/moderate nerf to vassals without it affecting gameplay too much?
    For which I am eternally grateful. Being forward settled effectively means I have to be a warmonger if I want to compete. Not that I don't enjoy a good war now and then but having to do that at the start of the game is pretty annoying, and often leads to them hating me for the rest of the game.

    Granted I have no issue going down a difficulty. I would much prefer if the AI numerical bonuses were increased though - that way they would be more competitive in areas other than land-grabbing.
    Not something I've experienced personally. Do the relationships modifiers give you any clue about why they don't like you? Have you taken other people's cities?
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2020

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