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Rise and Stagnation of Civilization (Earth18Civs BtS, not RFC)

Discussion in 'Civ4 - PBEM Games' started by Imp. Knoedel, Feb 5, 2015.

  1. Imp. Knoedel

    Imp. Knoedel Properly Paranoid Proletarian

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    Game has started!

    Good evening everyone, now that the semester is over it is time for me to start another PBEM. So I've been thinking, civilizations with earlier Unique Units and Unique Buildings usually perform better than those with later UUs and UBs due to snowballing, how could we remedy that and let civs with late uniques shine even in an Ancient starting era game? Thus I got the idea for this game.

    We will play on a Earth18Civs map with some modifications (resources and starting units moved around, everybody starts with at least one warrior and worker etc.), since we probably won't get 18 players (though that would certainly be nice) we'll have a mix of AI and human controlled civilizations. Sounds pretty straight forward, doesn't it? However, there is one teeny tiny small little house rule that should make the name of this game clear:

    Once a civilization is beyond the era in which its Unique Unit or Unique Building (only the later one counts) is unlocked, the research slider has to remain at 0% for the rest of the game and you may not ever build Research, leaving Specialists and Espionage as your sole providers of Science. So for example France has to shut down research upon having researched the first Industrial era tech as both its UU and UB are in the Renaissance, Mali has to stop in the Medieval era as its UB is in the Classical era while its UU is irrelevant as it's earlier, Japan can go all the way into the Modern era, and poor Inca will remain in the stone age forever if a player is masochistic enough to pick them. :lol:

    Unfortunately we can't force the AIs to comply with this house rule, but I hope we can at least get more than half of all civs human controlled so this shouldn't be too much of an issue. Obviously we'll play without Tech Trading as that would defeat the whole purpose of this game if civs that are supposed to stagnate and fall behind could just buy techs with gold. As a matter of fact I even considered prohibiting tech stealing and employing scientists, but decided against it because I don't want the game to become too restrictive.

    I'm open for any other suggestions with regards to victories and settings, but please don't tell me I have to go remove every single goody hut. :(

    I will pick my civ last and reserve myself the right to assign civs according to skill level of players to prevent Tigranes from picking Japan and winning Domination before 1.000 AD. :lol:

    No backsies now, I started the game as such:

    EarthEvolution2 Mapscript

    Imperator Knoedel - Victoria of England, Stagnation Era: Industrial
    Nighthawk419 - Pericles of Greece, Stagnation Era: Medieval
    sinimusta - Ramesses II of Egypt, Stagnation Era: Classical
    ReallyEvilMuff - Louis XIV, Stagnation Era: Industrial
    grogburg - Qin Shi Huang of China, Stagnation Era: Renaissance
    Luthor_Saxburg - Gandhi of India, Stagnation Era: Industrial
    PatriotNorwood - Suryavarman II of Khmer, Stagnation Era: Medieval
    Zacar - Montezuma of Aztec, Stagnation Era: Medieval

    10 AIs:
    Native America
    Inca
    Portugal
    Mali
    Zululand
    Holy Rome
    Russia
    Babylon
    Mongolia
    Japan

    Noble Difficulty for everyone

    Huge
    Temperate
    Medium
    Ancient
    Normal
    No
    Preset
    Preset
    On

    City Flipping after Conquest
    No Technology Trading
    No Tribal Villages
    No Random Events

    All Victories

    House Rules:
    No City Gifting outside of Peace Treaties
    Must infiltrate a human controlled civ with a Great Spy before being allowed to change their civics and/or State Religion with espionage
    Once a player has reached their designated Stagnation era they may no longer build Research and must lower their Research slider to 0% immediately and leave it there for the rest of the game.

    I also gave every AI controlled civ the Archery Technology, and every player no matter if human controlled or not receives an additional warrior, archer and worker along with their regular starting units.
     
  2. sinimusta

    sinimusta el capitano

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    I'm interested. I'd like restricted leaders here since it's a real world map, but what about letting player decide which of the leaders they want if the civ has multiple choices? In some cases I'd like to get a different leader that this scenario has as the default.

    Still thinking about civ choice, maybe Germany or Egypt. What civs are allowed to me :mischief:?
     
  3. Nighthawk419

    Nighthawk419 Deity

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    I'm in. Not sure on my civ yet though, I will need to do some research on that.

    sinimusta I don't think you have the option to change civ's leaders in the Earth18civs scenario.

    Is it possible to use the Next War mod to get more futuristic era techs while still doing Earth18civs? That would be cool because the AI would truly become a threat as the humans stagnate...
     
  4. Zacar

    Zacar Warlord

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    I'm interested. Haven't played PBEMs before, so there may be some unexpected technicalities that are new to me. It's probably a bit different to what I'm used to, even as you have left settings undefined for now (I prefer closer to marathon than to quick - but I'll leave that to others). Perhaps I'll die in a few turns to barbs from a hut, but oh well. :D

    edit: I have thought about this a bit:

    Is there a specific reason why you suggest this scenario instead of a random map? That would allow more convenient leader choices and less work on your part in case goody huts are off.

    I assume bulbing a tech is also forbidden after the stagnation point? But searching a goody hut and receiving a tech would still be OK?
     
  5. Luthor_Saxburg

    Luthor_Saxburg Vassal of Civilization

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    Knoedel had an interesting idea! Probably a bit unfair for the early Civ's but it's an interesting idea...

    Bulbing? Care to explain?



    Settings proposal
    Speed: even tough in SP I like Marathon, in MPP I prefer faster speeds as we do one turn at a time.
    Barbarians: Raging!
    Barb huts: ON please
    Events: ON please
     
  6. sinimusta

    sinimusta el capitano

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    I'm against raging barbs, they screw some civs way harder than others in this map. I feel that civs like Mali or Inca already have difficult enough setup.

    Vote for normal speed.

    What difficulty? High enough that the AI civs actually matter? Will you give AIs some starting bonuses?

    Edit: I'm against banning bulbs, if I'm running those specialists, I want to use them for good stuff.
     
  7. Zacar

    Zacar Warlord

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    Bulbing, as in researching a tech with a Great Person. But now that I look at the original proposal, it doesn't mention this manner of research at all.

    Settings proposal:
    Speed: Slowest that you folk deem sensible
    Barbarians: Normal
    Huts: Off or On
    Events: Off
    Difficulty: Intuitively Noble to make things even, unless barbs are a problem, in which case I'd say no barbarians.. (tbh what makes preset difficulties messy is that they partially change the rules for humans and partially deal with AIs only)

    I'll play regardless of small details, as long as we stay in default BtS or such familiar territory. Does BtS mean no mods or does it mean some non gameplay-altering mod?

    By the way, are there any implicit house rules that should be followed even though they are not mentioned?
     
  8. Nighthawk419

    Nighthawk419 Deity

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    The typical speed for PBEM's is normal speed, not quick. I was discussing this idea with Knoedel before he posted this and my understanding is it would be normal speed. Epic or Marathon with a PBEM is brutal.

    I believe he said this scenario because the idea is to have it be similar to the RFC mod, without actually being RFC. A little historicity is nice, especially since most civs will stagnate right after their historical "peak" which is when the UU and UB's are centered around. Its meant to be a twist on a historical-type of game, while being different than some of the others we are currently playing around here.

    That being said - for sake of simplicity I think we should leave goody huts on. They really aren't all that big a deal anyway.

    Bulbing is when you use a great person to learn techs.

    I'd agree with your point on barbs. Hell, some civs are screwed enough as it is just with AI's who will continue into the future.

    I would just say noble or prince AI difficulty. The point is to challenge yourself with the limitations - if noble AI's are too easy for you, then pick a civ where you will be forced to drop your tech slider to 0% in the medieval age while the AI doesn't, and see how you do... Also, its a multiplayer game. The challenge is against the other humans, the AI is just there for color.

    I agree with you on bulbing - I think thats fine. Science slider must be set to 0% and can't build science... otherwise everything else is fine. Effectively its forcing everyone to run a specialist economy, and you will definitely get slowed down after your civs "peak" either way. There has to be SOME way of advancing, even if its extremely difficult.
     
  9. Nighthawk419

    Nighthawk419 Deity

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    Typically PBEM's won't work if you have any mods loaded at all. You'll get the assets have been modified error. It will force everyone to be using no mods.

    As far as I'm aware there's no other implicit house rules in PBEMs. Just play your turn as quickly as you can when you get it and don't be incredibly slow. Otherwise if the game mechanics allow it, go for it. With the exception of the written house rule.
     
  10. Zacar

    Zacar Warlord

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    Thanks for the replies Nighthawk. I'm OK with or without bulbing.

    I'll go and pick the Aztecs, unless my skill level (=complete mystery) prevents that.

    GMT+2
     
  11. Nighthawk419

    Nighthawk419 Deity

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    I'm going to take Greece
     
  12. Luthor_Saxburg

    Luthor_Saxburg Vassal of Civilization

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    Do not be a liar! :p

    You might not even think about it but off course that there are certain implicit rules that we all expect (even though different people expect different things). But it is a bit of "common sense": respect other players, not ruin the game for others just because you are having a tandrum, avoid breaking the "spirit" of the law, etc, etc.

    One implicit rule (that would fit under 'respect') is that you are willing to play this game through even if you start to lose. Off course thing happen in life and sometimes we drop out, but nothing is worse than a player that acts irresponsible and when the sh*t starts to hit the fan... dissappears without even saying anything. So I would say 'yes, there are quite a few implicit rules' if you think about it.

    Thanks for explaining the bulbing! :goodjob: I think it should fit fine with this purpose.

    There are a couple of rule that I would propose to implement:
    - to not allow the spy action of "changing Civics". It is surprisingly cheap and it can be too powerfull in certain conditions.
    - to not allow giving cities to AI just for the purpose of avoiding it falling to another human. For me this should falls under the 'respect' rule above but it has happened to me so I would prefer to have this explicit rule.
     
  13. sinimusta

    sinimusta el capitano

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    I just thought when you suggested Next War that AI should be buffed to actually get to that tech level. I'm fine with prince.


    And I have made my decision: Egypt.
     
  14. Luthor_Saxburg

    Luthor_Saxburg Vassal of Civilization

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    Japan seems like a strong choice.

    But I will take... Korea? Never played with them before.
     
  15. Imp. Knoedel

    Imp. Knoedel Properly Paranoid Proletarian

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    The leaders and civs are all already in place, just download the save file I attached in this post if you want to take a look. Everyone starts with a Settler, a Warrior, a Worker and either another Warrior or a Scout depending on the starting tech. I made sure that if everyone settles in place every good tile (that is riverside or with a resource) will be able to be worked by a city by moving around some resources and starting locations. This is especially important for tightly cramped Europe. I also made sure that everyone is able to build their Unique Unit.

    If you absolutely positively insist on choosing a leader or civ that isn't on the map I suppose I could still change the scenario but I would really prefer not to.

    Hm, I think that is possible, but I doubt there will any AIs still be alive at that point, if we even get that far.

    Believe me, you don't want to play a PBEM on Marathon speed. Personally I'm torn between Normal and Epic for this one.

    As a matter of fact I let Nighthawk talk me into it when I discussed this idea with him in private. If the majority really wants to we could play on a random map instead, but I spent minutes and minutes researching and fixing the map. D:
    Also I think the more convenient leader choices are a reason against a random map, as then everyone would just pick civs with the latest possible Uniques, thus ruining the whole point of this game.

    Good call, I forgot about bulbing. I'm not really sure about whether or not to allow that, so I'll listen to the majority about this.

    Goody Huts are fine too, as getting a tech from them is the exception rather than the rule.

    I'm not sure if Raging Barbs is such a good idea. The Europeans except for Russia and maybe Greece won't get any whatsoever anyway so this will only make the game for the rest of the world much harder, and Europe is already OP.

    Oh yes, Inca is definitely only for masochists. I would not recommend anyone playing them, especially with our house rule in place.

    I'd be for Noble, no extra boni for AIs.

    It means BtS. Then again, come to think of it, has anyone ever played a PBEM with the BUG or BULL mod? I assume with a Custom Assets installation you wouldn't get anything from it in Multiplayer and if installed as a separate mod either everyone would have to play with it or nobody.

    Well they work if everyone has the same mod loaded.

    Actually there some, like no reloads except maybe for misclicks.

    I don't know your skill level, so I'll just have to trust your judgment on this. No research past the Classical Age for you then.

    It's nice that you are thoughtful enough to mention your timezone, but that doesn't help me if I don't know what time of the day you'll likely play your turn on.
    This goes for everyone btw. The only one of you I can reliably place is Nighthawk because I know his daily routine. Hell I can't even reliably place myself because it's completely random everyday when I'm awake and when asleep, and I have no idea what my schedule for the next semester is gonna look like yet.

    Hm, I'll have to look up what era the Odeon is in.

    Hm, I don't really want to put up artificial restrictions, but you are right in that changing civics with espionage is way too cheap. I don't want to remove it for good but agree that we need to restrict it somehow. Maybe you have to infiltrate the civ in question with a Great Spy to be able to do that? Open for suggestions here.

    When has this happened for you? Can I have a link and a more detailed explanation please?

    I'm not actually sure if we can change the difficulty in a scenario, I'll have to take a look.

    Are you really a bad enough dude to live without research past the Ancient Age?

    It sure does, I'd say it is the most likely civ to win unless Mongolia and China work together from the very beginning to contain them, so if any human gets them it should be a newbie without much experience.
    ...
    Or I could pick Japan and ensure my victory from turn 1. :lol:

    Korea isn't in this scenario.
     
  16. Luthor_Saxburg

    Luthor_Saxburg Vassal of Civilization

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    Speed: If we are starting from stratch then anything slower than 'Normal' is too slow for me.

    Raging Barbs - I understand. Maybe Raging Barbs can be ON if we go for a random map? But Barbs will be ON, yes?

    You can change the difficult level of each Civ. I would propose a difficult level of 'Chieftain' for the AI Civs.

    If Korea and Khmer are out... can I choose Ghandi's India?

    Now the story... once upon a time I was gladly and peacefully attacking Tigranes and I was almost almost conquering one of his cities... when I was about to conquer the city, the creative player decides to give the city to an AI neutral Civ just for denial purposes! I was very frustrated and must say that this kind of actions (even if not in an explicit written rule) goes against the 'spirit' of the rules, IMHO.
    More than having a written rule, I would like to have an implicit understanding that these kind of things should not be allowed.

    .
     
  17. sinimusta

    sinimusta el capitano

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    Well, either I'm bad or will do badly, we'll see. :lol: But the Egyptian challenge interests me. I'd rather take Ramses but if it's too much trouble, cre isn't too bad either.

    Btw, if it's just a random map, I'm not interested.

    I don't think Japan is the most likely winner here. They're safe and can tech for long sure, but safety has a price. It's a good spot for new player though. But Japan still needs to expand well and build up a strong economy to get to use their free teching. And the leader doesn't help you with that too much.
     
  18. Imp. Knoedel

    Imp. Knoedel Properly Paranoid Proletarian

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    I did give everyone a worker and an additional warrior so the start shouldn't be too bad.

    Barbs will definitely be on, yes, I don't see why they shouldn't.

    You sure about that?

    I was under the impression that Asoka was the leader in this scenario, but I could be wrong.

    Couldn't you just have conquered the city off the AI?
     
  19. Luthor_Saxburg

    Luthor_Saxburg Vassal of Civilization

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    It's my proposal.

    Asoka is the leader in the file you've sent, but could you change it?

    I was at peace with the AI. I could have made a DoW on the AI and conquer the city, yes. BUT it would force me to have another war, whilst giving cities away just for denial purposes does not seem correct for me. But you are the GameMaster. Would you say that this kind of things should be allowed within this game?
     
  20. Imp. Knoedel

    Imp. Knoedel Properly Paranoid Proletarian

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    I'll wait for more opinions on this.

    I could probably, but I'd have to look up how. Is it really such a big deal? Asoka allows ridiculous flexibility with civics, more so than any other leader in the game.

    Hmmmmm, how would you have reacted if instead of an AI he had given that city to a human player? Should that be allowed?
    How about the following house rule: You may not trade cities while you are at war outside of peace treaties.
     

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