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Sea Colonies

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Creation & Customization' started by primem0ver, Jun 16, 2006.

  1. primem0ver

    primem0ver Emperor

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    Ok... I just signed up for this forum because I am sick of waiting for this feature. My favorite civ game is still Call To Power II but it is seriously outdated. The main reason for this is because I love sea colonies...I think they make game play significantly more interesting and imaginative in the modern era, especially when you can build networks of transportation systems that span the globe, including over seas and so far have refused to purchase a civ game until they include it. I played Civ III and it was ok... but it was not impressive enough for me to purchase it without this feature (and Most CTP II fanatics at the Apolyton website agree with me, partly because its moddability was very limited compared to CTP II).

    Well Civ IV looks REALLY nice and moddable but it doesn't seem to have sea colonies either (I have not purchased the game yet) and so I am wondering with all the modding ability that seems to be part of Civ IV, (and the newly released SDK) if this is a possibility?

    Is this a feature that could be added and what would be the best way to go about it? I'm sure scripting will be necessary (to make the AI capable of building sea colonies and transporation tubes). Would modding make that possible or is this something the that would be best done with the SDK (I am fluent in C++ so that is not necessarily an issue... however I would prefer not to spend months behind a computer figuring out the original source code to accomplish this).
     
  2. Osymandias

    Osymandias Grand King of Apes

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    i know that in the german community they're working on ocean-colonies. they managed to add a settler-boat and to settle on water-tiles through the effect that on the tile where you build your city a land-tile pops up. it isn't the same as in the ctp-series, but hey, it's a start :D i'm also a fan of ctp1/2 and really awaiting the final release of this mod.

    here's the link: German Ocean-Colonies WIP
     
  3. erikg88

    erikg88 Warlord

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    It seems to me that the last time this was brought up, somebody said it'd be very difficult to teach to the AI.

    Maybe I'm misremembering, though.
     
  4. TheLopez

    TheLopez Deity

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    Using the SDK it shouldn't be too hard. All you have to do is remove the check for ocean/coast plots when moving a water settler. Or better yet, reverse the condition for water settlers, only ocean/coast plots are valid.
     
  5. Gerikes

    Gerikes User of Run-on Sentences.

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    I'm assuming that should read "shouldn't", based on the context of the next few statements... :D
     
  6. TheLopez

    TheLopez Deity

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    I don't know what you are talking about :mischief:
     
  7. Craig_Sutter

    Craig_Sutter Deity

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    If you don't want actual cities on water, it would be easy to add a tile improvement, sea colony, similar to an off-sea drilling rig. Perhaps it could be an upgrade from fishing boat on ocean food resources.
     
  8. Dryhad

    Dryhad Prince

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    Sea Cottage/Hamlet/Village/Town perhaps? Maybe that's a little boring. I do like the idea of colonising the oceans though, it was something I liked about Alpha Centauri.
     
  9. Judge Dee

    Judge Dee District Magistrate

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    The snag is that it doesn't really fit within the core Civ umbrella of representing things that humanity has achieved thus far. Possibly for a sci-fi mod (isn't there one going that is basically a recreation of SMAC?).

    The second obstacle I see is that ocean / sea tiles are, frankly, kinda sucky. Even if you rig it that a sea colony starts with a lighthouse, they can basically feed themselves, but have no production. Whales & oil are the only options that they would have to generate any hammers. Of course, that could be taken care of with further modding I suppose, giving each tile a starting rate of 2 food 1 hammer 1 commerce or something, but then that doesn't feel right either ...
     
  10. primem0ver

    primem0ver Emperor

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    Thanks for the ideas guys:

    Ok... if Civ is supposed to be completely historical I can understand why they do not include it. But the whole space side of Civ 4... does it go beyond our current technology? I suppose that is why I like CTP2, it explores the past and the future. So, yes, I suppose a "science fiction" mod would be the most appropriate mod to add this to if Civ always concentrates on just the past. With this possiblity I may invest in Civ4.

    Regarding the "sea cottage/settler" idea: It's not a "floating" city... it's an underwater city created by a "sea engineer" (a machine that builds the superstructure/dome whatever. The tech in CTP2 is something like ultrapressure machines... the ability to build things that withstand the pressure of the surrounding water at a fair depth. With that capability, under-sea cities become possible.

    At first it doesn't sound too hard: a simple check for ocean tiles. But here is where it gets a bit challenging:

    Tile improvements would also be necessary to get troops and stuff there (a ocean equivelant to a road: subway tubes) as well as mining facilities. That is where the value of sea-colonies lies in CTP2 since the ocean floor is rich in minerals. In CTP2 underwater volcanic vents and mid-ocean ridges would be the richest mining spots on the map. Unfortunately those do not exist on Civ maps (do they?) so that would also have to be changed. Would that be best done with source code or python script?

    One may also be able to do this (the sea floor map) completely with tile improvements (which might work better historically anyway). The problem in CTP2 is that the ocean floor is immediately see-able once you set out to sea. Historically, the sea floor was not visible until the development of sonar in the early 1900's. So maybe a tech that could "see" the sea floor could make "permanent" tile improvements as a "sonar boat" passes within a certain range over tiles based on a pre-determined sea floor structure. Is this possible with Civ 4's modding ability? If so, then this is probably the best approach since the sea floor should not be visible without the appropriate tech anyway.

    Are the graphics done with 2-d sprites or with 3-d objects?

    P.S. what percentage of the posters here are modders versus people looking for or suggesting mods?
     
  11. Osymandias

    Osymandias Grand King of Apes

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    @Judge Dee: perhaps therefor a "underwater-mountain-range" could be modded where a "underwater-mining-complex" could be built at with the same effects as it's counterparts on land.

    also if we can get out how to mod in a new route-type, perhaps a "underwater-maglev-tunnel" would be possible. i read in a science-mag some month ago that there are some plannings for such a trans-atlantic-tunnel which can't be realized yet. but in more or less remote future.

    /edit: woo....i needed at least 20mins to write this....
     
  12. Dryhad

    Dryhad Prince

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    We may not have actually done this yet, but it doesn't mean we don't have the ability to. I think there's just very little point (which is kind of represented by the second part of your post).
     
  13. Gerikes

    Gerikes User of Run-on Sentences.

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    http://www.poseidonresorts.com/

    It may not be a city, but it's a start :D

    But you're right about the cities probably having a tough time doing things once built.
     
  14. primem0ver

    primem0ver Emperor

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    Perhaps this comes from my lack of understanding of the model used by the civ series. The CTP series uses production, food, and money/gold values for each (kind of) tile and sea tiles do have production value. I would assume this is comparable as shown below. If I am wrong though, then I can see how this would create problems.

    production = hammer
    food = food
    commerce = money/gold

    If sea tiles in civ have a 0 production/hammer values, I can see where this would be a problem. In CTP regular sea tiles have a base production value of 5 (I think), rift tiles have a base value of 10 and volcanoes have a base value of 20 (CTP uses multiples of 5).

    To me, this does "feel" right if one assumes that the production "hammer" is coming from the ocean floor versus the top. It would be hard to have production on a floating city... but one on the floor (provided the area is liveable due to available tech) would probably be very productive.

    I think my suggestion above about upgrading the values on the sea floor with the introduction of sonar tech would solve the problem in a logical way. That is of course if I understand the Civ model correctly
     
  15. Dubmetender

    Dubmetender Dub's the way of the life

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    Actually, i work on a mod, based on Call to Power II ideas...

    and i've got some submarines cities, tunnels and sea improvement...

    you can mp me, if you want my files (actually, it's just a work version, but soon, it will be terminate (in one month i think) or you wait until i finish the mod...
     
  16. A Silly Goose

    A Silly Goose Goose of Silliness

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    Obviously, if you're going to have sea colonies, you're going to want to create new ocean tiles that yield food, production, and commerce, similar to on land. Terrain features could include ridges, trenches, thermal vents, undersea volcanoes, etc., and sufficient food could be garnered through fisheries.

    You could also have two different depths of ocean floor, so that you can only build in shallower waters at first, and then expand to the real deep parts of the ocean after perfecting the appropriate branch of the tech tree. It'd basically function just like the coast-to-ocean transition that's already in the game.

    Naturally, sea colonies would need alternative versions of many existing city improvements, as well: aqueducts could be replaced with desalination plants, and walls would need to be replaced with... something.

    Also, undersea tunnels would rock, and aren't very far-fetched. They could hook up to land-based maglevs.
     
  17. primem0ver

    primem0ver Emperor

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    It's looking more and more possible. Thanks guys. I will probably be purchasing Civ4 shortly... but I may wait 'till I'm done teaching summer school so I am not too distracted!

    BTW dementer... Its great you are already working on one. Maybe we could work together. I still think CTP's shortcoming is that it shows the sea floor way to early in the game. So using "tile improvements" to "show" new sea floor tile features later in the game (once the tech is discovered) may be the way to go. It would be nice to add some other SF features as well

    Matthew
     
  18. primem0ver

    primem0ver Emperor

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    A silly goose: those are some great ideas I hadn't thought of (desalinization plants etc...) and oops... I called dubmetender dementer. oh well. Those and my ideas put together would make this a very interesting addition IMO.

    I would need to learn more about that coast to ocean transition.
     
  19. Padmewan

    Padmewan King

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    Building sea colonies in SMAC was neat conceptually, primarily for that first moment when you discover foils and ask yourself... hey, can I put a colony pod on that thing?... but it turns out to be useless even in a game where it was intended. A fortiori in Civ4...

    If you think there ought to be rich underwater mining resources, the easiest way I could imagine it is with bonuses that appear only when you discover a certain tech. Until then, the ocean tiles are pretty much worthless.

    Underwater tubes and all that sounds really, really hard. You need to rethink the entire concept of domains -- somehow the tube turns a water domain into land domain, but it's also still water domain...? What happens if a battleship enters a tile with enemy tanks moving through the tube???

    Probably better to abstract that idea and create something akin to an airport.

    Anyway, even from a realism POV, I don't see any near-future point where moving objects through underwater tubes will be faster/safer/cheaper than above water.
     
  20. Dubmetender

    Dubmetender Dub's the way of the life

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    for my mod, i use "sea tunnels" (don't have the good .nif, i use railroad), but the domain_land unit can use the tunnels to move into water, and the boat can move on the same tile, can attack the units in tunnel...
    We are two for working on the mod, and i don't do the c++ development, so i can't explane how it work (sorry for basic language)

    the tunnel is a new road type, and it's be configurable for speed move, like road or railroad...
     

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