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Possible new civilization game: make our own!

Steph

Multi Many Tasks man
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A lot of you probably already know it, but I've been working for sometimes on making may own strategy game, using an engine that I've called SGF (StrateGames Factory).

I've put that on hold for 3 months while I was working on the expanded editor, and I was still hoping that we could one day get the source code of Civilization III.

But this seems extreamly unlikely...

So starting next week I will start again working on SGF.

After some reflexion, I think I may have bit too ambitious with my initial project, and it may be interesting to redefine the project, making the design together in this forum.

This thread will be for some public discussion about it, and I've planned to have more detailed discussion in a private forum, with the posters who will be the most interested by the project. Some may already know where to look, I'll start posting there tomorrow.

For the moment, I mostly need to rewrite a clear design of the game. So far I have lot of ideas, but they lack some detailing and structuring.
 
Oh, I'm all over this!*

So, SGF is the game framework that developed out of SSS, correct? And you're talking about using that to make a (more or less) clone of Civ3 to meet the needs of the community? This is something that I've always wanted to see done, though I didn't think it would ever happen. I've been studying this project a bit lately, being a native Java speaker myself. It's little more than a BIQ viewer at the moment but the idea is there.
When you say "rewrite a clear design of the game" do you mean at a software level, or a high-level summary of requirements/goals/"changes"?

*as a contributor at least, probably not a developer (remember how that turned out last time :p Although, I do have a lot more experience and free time now than I did back then. I'll see how things go.)
 
SSS was more a trial and error run to learn and see what I could do.

Then I started again (especially after I lost of large number of files due to a virus), and I tried to make it more as a framework, and based on XNA to have better performances. Now, we a 1900x1200 map, and a few hundreds unit sprites on screen, I still have more than 100 FPS on my old coomputer.

I wasn't really sure of what to do witht he framework, as in theory it could be used for different kind of turn based strategy game.

For the moment it's a kind of empty shell, with a graphical engine, and architecture for objects.

It needs some flesh.

My own expanded editor is probably doing far more than the BIQ viewer you have linked, but it cannot lead somewhere, as there's no chance we get the source code of the game.

We could perhaps make a clone of Civilization III, and try to fix a few things. But it means that
a) We will still be blocked by some of the design flaws in the game.
b) We would probably have a lot of copyright issues. And I don't think we can hope 2k games would show much flexibility here.

So I prefer to make a new game, where we can do what we want. It won't be much more work than redoing CivIII, as we would have to make everything from scratch anyway.

And what I would like to do first, is make a new design with a team of skilled and motivated C&C posters.

I don't want to go to the software level, but I want something as detailed as possible, from a modder/player point of view.

What is the scale/scope of the game? What are the rules. What will modding allows? How will modding be done?

And I want something that can actually be done, so we'll have to make some compromises, as it's not possible to implement all the ideas. Question of time, but also because some would contradict each others.

Help for programmers will be welcome, but later, once the design is finalized and we know what we'll do.

Help for artist is welcome to, mostly to make "test" graphics. They need to much the constraint, and good enough for testing/demo, but they don't need to be perfectyet.
 
My ability to commit time fluctuates, as you know better than anyone. But I will closely follow this thread & contribute what I can.

Same here. I will definitely be willing to give advice from a modder/player's poin of view, though.
 
Just like a comment, I would leave the 2D engine so owners of slow computers like me could keep playing a improve strategy game that has the graphic level of CIV III. Not so much time ago, there were a tread that discusses the changes that the modders and user would like to see in Civ III (like Great People, GPP points, moddable railroad movement, bonuses againts certain units, etc) so i would start there.
 
We could perhaps make a clone of Civilization III, and try to fix a few things. But it means that
a) We will still be blocked by some of the design flaws in the game.
b) We would probably have a lot of copyright issues. And I don't think we can hope 2k games would show much flexibility here.

This is where research helps out tremendously: http://www.copyright.gov/ Basically 2k would have the literal programming, the 1's and 0's in their specific order, copyrighted... so if you wanted to write a new program that behaved like civ 3 it would be a kin to writing a book in the same style of another book... also it is possible that they would have the images copyrighted also so I would avoid using their original works of art... I fully support a super improved "clone" of civ 3 (I use clone very lightly here because if you build it yourself it wouldn't be a clone... it would be unique and special). :goodjob: I hope that helped some.... I am unsure if this would really apply fully in this situation, but "http://www.copyright.gov/fls/fl108.html"
 
If I could contribute to this, I would love to. I can't do much beyond building models of various objects. My skill is improving with each model that I build and I feel like the Koreans in the sense that if you can't find it, then show me a picture of it and I will make it for you.

I really just want to see the combat a bit more detailed, have things like supply lines, ammo and weapon type, and be able to use the terrain for more than just defense bonuses. I would also like rivers to take on a bigger role than before and use oceans for more than just a place to have a navy.
 
Well, as I've said, I don't like the idea of cloning Civ III or similar - Civ III has been done. It would be much better to have a more original game. I really liked all the ideas that were in the original plans for SSS and I'd like to see a game along those lines. Ideas from "how could Civ III be improved" threads might be fine later on, but I don't think it would be a good idea to let those drive the initial development of the game.
 
it would be a kin to writing a book in the same style of another book...
Unless you are a highly skilled attorney versed both in international contract law & this type of intellectual property law who is committing his services it's probably wiser not to advise us to enter the same type of situation that Apple & Microsoft fought over for years. Follow Steph's suggestion.
 
There have been many suggestions for new civ games or expansions, what fans are expecting. But when you guys are gonna build entirely new game, i would suggest to change the tile based terrain and movement system to something similar to Heroes of Might and Magic series. I don't know if that is doable or if you guys even like this idea, but it's just my idea that would offer more variety of different movement length in turn, penalties and bonuses, maneuverability (minimum turning radius for ships and plains) etc. I don't know if you understood the idea behind it. In other basic structures it would be more similar to Civ. And one of the few things that i liked in Civ 4.. the experience gained unit bonuses would be good too.. i think.
Fiction or not.. most important is actually work with AI i guess.
 
One of the single greatest things that I wish was in Civ III is unit type modifiers, like spears +50% def versus mounted units. That kind of ability to specialize units would take Civ to another level of complexity, even beyond rock-paper-scissors strategy. I pledge to help in any way I can, and in a few semesters I might even be able to help with coding.
 
Does any of you guys play Paradox games?
I played Victoria a lot last time an I think there could be some things that would work in a civ-style Game too.
e.g. I like the way victoria handles the population and government and of course the event-system that allows historical scenarios.
 
Two things ... make sure terrain is not limited. This cripples expanding the game into near space and beyond. Would almost want to see a cell based structure that can be selected and blows up to say the max available in c3 today (definable of course so those with processing issues can adjust). Tech should be limited only by the scope of the game not some artificial construct .. if I want to go from 4000BC to 4000AD should be able to build the tech tree and surrounding game space accordingly.
Also look at what is happening with CtP2 where the source code has been released to the community. I still play this today after all the work done there but it is a very small group advancing this game .. lots of potential but would grow dramatically if folks turned to it (unabashed plug, I like the game as in many cases now better then Civ3).

Hope this goes to completion cause the SSS was better looking then Civ3 ... another plug .. sorry.
 
Steph, I know you are a skilled code/programme writer, however I have also been told that coding AI is borderline impossible, this is my biggest concern for this project. Is it possible to create new AI for the game?
 
Steph, I know you are a skilled code/programme writer, however I have also been told that coding AI is borderline impossible, this is my biggest concern for this project. Is it possible to create new AI for the game?
If programming AI was impossible, we would have only human-human games...

The difficulty is to make a smart AI. I agree it would be the most difficult part, and it can come only later, when the game mechanism have been defined and we know what to do.

But it should be doable.
 
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