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Soren Johnson's Old World

Discussion in 'Old World' started by Casworon, Apr 14, 2020.

  1. steveg700

    steveg700 Deity

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    Well, la de da.

    It may be kind of sad, but it's also quite sane and reasonable for people do get bothered when they invest time to plan and form decisions, and then those efforts are dashed by either a random event, missing information, or simply the difficulty in navigating the UI. It's early-access game, so such things happen. If there's nothing to learn from, no mistake discovered in postmortem, then it's Lucy jerking away the football. That kind of surprise loses its charm quickly.
     
  2. Elhoim

    Elhoim Iron Tower Studio Dev

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    When culture reaches a new threshold, and also placing an specialist on tile "culture bombs" the surrounding ones.

    There's "production", but separated in 3: Growth is for settlers/workers/etc, shields are for military units, civics is for projects and specialists. Build barracks and ranges to increase the rate at which you create units. Wonder build time is fixed, but with a builder leader you can stack workers to cut years by half.
     
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  3. DaviddesJ

    DaviddesJ Deity

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    OK, but I want my plans to be thwarted by random events and missing information. So we can't both be satisfied.
     
  4. steveg700

    steveg700 Deity

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    Are we supposed to be discussing a game of strategy? If so, a desire for strategy to be rendered moot by random events and obtuse design seems a non sequitur. Non sequiturs don't merit satisfaction. Games can be challenging and even random in ways that dovetail with strategic decision-making.

    I figured it was something like that, but even when I settle a city with a military faction, it still takes forever to put out a single unit. Of course, barracks may not come a player's way for a while.

    Of course, much of that is also contingent on drawing forestry in a timely fashion. I've found myself running workers around chopping trees like mad and praying for them to regrow faster. Probably need to see a reduction in the wood cost for basic tiles like farms and mines.
     
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  5. DaviddesJ

    DaviddesJ Deity

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    Random events and limited information don't make strategy moot. Strategy is all the more important, interesting, and challenging when you have to take into account the possibility of random events, hidden information, and unpredictable developments.
     
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  6. Abegweit

    Abegweit Anarchist trader

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    A citizen or a hamlet will culture-bomb the tiles around it.
     
  7. steveg700

    steveg700 Deity

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    Good to know. So, in theory, I should culture-bombing the northwestern portion of this city because there are three citizens clustered there? Thing is, they've been there at it for a while, so it can't really be a culture "bomb" per se.
    upload_2020-5-14_21-25-27.png


    Anyone know what the Vassalage law does? -50% "unit consumption" means what, they don't use up as much wood and metal when you build them? (Doesn't seem to align conceptually with vassalism)
     
    Last edited: May 14, 2020
  8. Stringer1313

    Stringer1313 Emperor

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    I'm not sure about that the debate is over whether we like random events or not. I think it's more about: 1) are the consequences for the random event disproportionate? Like every turn has lots of random events about family members etc but very few are game breaking like suddenly losing your entire army that you spend dozens of turns building, and losing a city. I think the other issue is: 2) does the random event make sense conceptually? Like families demanding you declare war on someone b/c they have a different ideology makes sense. Having an enemy wipe your entire army out in one turn by teleporting troops jumping from the shadows doesn't make conceptual sense (of course not everything has to be 100% realistic but it has to have some basis in reality). And I think maybe 3) is it fun or not fun to respond to the random event? For me, it's fun to figure out how to deal with random family drama or other events from a role playing sense and picking choices that have small but significant changes on game play, and the choices are sometimes hard. However, it is not fun to build 100 troops surrounding each one of your cities in preparation for Teleportation Invasion out of nowhere. The "choice" is not interesting. Granted you do have to decide between guns and butter generally but i think the teleportation greatly skews the stakes.
     
  9. SammyKhalifa

    SammyKhalifa Deity

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    So last night I had a dream where my parents kept trying to hook me up with these people from other countries . . .
     
  10. Shadowhal

    Shadowhal Warlord

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    Armies surprising their opponent and coming seemingly out of nowhere isn't fully ahistorical. Some of the very history-savvy members may refine, but certainly the Mongols placed an emphasis on fast warfare (ok, different time period, but maybe Scythians too). Napoleon often used very fast movement to startle enemies.

    Of course, it needs to work in the context of the game and be fun. I can see this being potentially quite frustrating. Maybe units get automatically fatigued, once they have attacked (subject to promotions negating this)? Maybe enemies get a free "hit" if you disengage from melee combat a la AoW 3? Maybe there are a few subtle things to make hit and run less easy while still maintaining high army movement - at a (orders) cost.
     
  11. Roald Amundsen

    Roald Amundsen Warlord

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    I always like it best when I'm losing strategy games. If I win I usually get bored. If I feel like I'm winning I often just quit ans start over. That is one of the reasons why always loved (and still love) Civ IV. Every time I click the "End of Turn" button I fear the sound of trumpets and a Stack of Doom landing on my shores. I mean, that Trumpet of Doom is probably my favorite gaming feature ever. Even though Old World has no Doomstacks I still fear a sudden war with units rushing into my territory from afar to wreak havoc. It's tense and it's keeping me on my toes!

    Btw. nice to see you here DaviddesJ! I know you from alot of forums I've been lurking on over at BGG (Tta and Mage Knight comes to mind). Seems like we share a lot of gaming tastes. Hope you like Old World!
     
  12. Elhoim

    Elhoim Iron Tower Studio Dev

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    Just click on the plus sign, the city will start working on a specialist, once it done, culture bomb.

    Units have a per turn consumption, that's what's lowered, not the upfront cost.
     
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  13. steveg700

    steveg700 Deity

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    Well, basically, the word "random" is used to indicate that what's happening isn't bound by cause-and-effect. I don't think I need to explain to most of us here how the degree of cause-and-effect differentiates a game of strategy from a game of luck.

    The most egregious example is watching your entire family line be wiped out by a succession of illnesses, drownings, and riding accidents. Was this fantastically bad luck? Or is there some bug that leads to death waves?

    Or perhaps this is the result of some cause-and-effect mechanism that the player isn't informed of. I can discern that attaching personalities to units as generals is not without risks--and indeed, the realization of risk seems to be more-or-less inevitable over time, as grievous injuries can happen from minor skirmishes or even a year with no combat at all. Being in the field bears inherent risks, then the player knows they should put their rising stars in peril and keep them doing something relatively safe. That's a strategic decision. If I send my favorite son out into battle to provide bonuses and he gets killed, that's on me for pushing my luck.

    Now, is there something happening behind the scenes to influence when a child drowns in his pool or falls off her pony? Perhaps having families upset with you leads to such poor care for your children. Perhaps it's assassination from a rival empire? There's no information. When there's no information, it seems random.

    Playing a strategy game where you expend time and opportunities to carefully mold characters into great leaders only to get a pop-up telling you they slipped on a bar of soap and dashed their skulls while getting out of the tub is not going to go over well with most players. Some people may welcome inanity, and it takes all kinds, including the inane ones, but in the realm of 4X most players want discernible cause and effect.

    To boil it down to whether or not someone enjoys losing is too facile. Most players are fine with losing if that loss can be attributed in some fashion to decisions made more than random numbers generated.

    The issue with teleportation wars is a separate matter as I would hope other nations' opinion of the player drive wars to occur more than random number generators. Clearly, though, orders alone are not enough to control rampant unit output. I look at my neighbors and they have far more improvements like barracks, quarries, and lumber mills than I could amassed in such a time frame. Or would have wanted to, really. If it just becomes a "Roman virus" type of game where the AI's are playing solely a game of expansion, then I could see losing interest rapidly. I am trying to pursue diplomacy, but takes hundreds of civics to do just about anything of significance with diplomacy or laws.
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2020
  14. steveg700

    steveg700 Deity

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    Oh, there's a plus sign to click. How'd you figure all this stuff out? Must help to have good eyesight.

    One thing about The Old World and many other games of its ilk does that nobody complains about except me is that they use extremely small fonts with no options for dialing it up. The font size in Old World must be something like a 5 or 6 point font. If someone were to post on this forum in this size, they'd draw negative feedback. If you got an email in that format, you wouldn't enjoy reading it. But we accept games that have to be played for hours in squint mode. I have poorer eyesight than most, but still it cannot go no noticed by myself alone.

    Visual accessibility is one major strength of Civ Vi.
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2020
  15. DaviddesJ

    DaviddesJ Deity

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    You don't need to explain it because it's not true. Having to account for the possibility of random events reqiures MORE strategy than if you don't.
     
  16. steveg700

    steveg700 Deity

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    First, you're referencing tactics, not strategy. Strategy is your forward-thinking plan, tactics are how you pivot in the short-term. Strategy is best-suited to focus on the tangible and quantifiable, with only a minimal diversion of resources to all the things that have a small chance of happening. It is self-defeating to plan for every possibility because the player could have been planning for something with far greater chance of certainty.

    I think it safe to say roulette is regarded as a less strategic game than blackjack, and blackjack less so than chess. And that is all because of the player's ability to successfully plan his moves in advance.

    Secondly, if you can realistically plan for something random, it's not all that random, and note that it's not what folks are going to take issue with in The Old World. In a card game, you have to plan for certain cards showing up in another player's hands. But that's not something truly random, which is why you can get tossed out of a casino for counting cards. No, random in the context that many are referring to here is the chance that a cyborg gorilla will crash through the skylight and slice off your hands with its laser-banana.

    There's a difference between suddenly tossed a curveball (challenging) or being spread into a grainy paste by a boulder (demoralizing). If a game is going to pelt you with a thousand things each with a minute chance of happening, no one of them should be that boulder, and the confluence of random events that can shatter an empire should be infrequent enough to be amusing anomalies.

    As I said, the differential is a matter of degrees, not all-or-nothing.
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2020
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  17. Casualty of war

    Casualty of war Prince

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    @DaviddesJ, wow, you are going to love when we play chess and I snatch your Rook off the table. Not capture, just yoink! I'm sure you have a strategy prepared.

    Hey, people like different types of games for different reasons. If it's an intentional design, groovy. I'll probably play something else. If it's a work in progress, here's my feedback and suggestions on rectifying it.

    And it's likely my gameplay will have to adapt too. I play Old World much differently than when I started, relinquishing strategies specific to other games that weren't applicable here. There are many events that have an option to score free Scouts; maybe I'm not building enough or utilizing them properly. I would definitely build more if they could be used to secure a cleared Barbarian Camp, but currently they can't. Scouts have no combat value and are just speedbumps, but maybe a line of speedbumps followed by an army of Archers can annihilate the enemy. But the speed you can replace troops makes it so that if you lose a substantial amount with little cost to the enemy, you are headed for the dustbin of history. It's rare in my experience for the enemy to let you peace out and they will snowball into an avalanche. I've had some success bribing someone else into the war. I've been playing my exploratory games on The Noble; maybe I have to take it down a notch.

    I can win most fair fights. I can even win fights where I'm disadvantaged and my enemy is playing by the same rules (I will spot you a Rook) but I don't much care for games where I'm playing by one set of rules and my enemies are playing by another. Right now the AI civilizations, not so much the Barbs, have a vantage on approach that appears to let them unerringly blitzkrieg your troops from out of the fog and it might as well be a meteor strike. Has anyone found a way to defend against this? Or implement this as a tactic they can use? Am I neglecting my borders by not posting a unit every 3 hexes as a wall of zone of control? Should I be filling the open fields with Forts?

    I've seen others have had this experience but has anyone stumbled on a solution that resembles fun.
     
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  18. steveg700

    steveg700 Deity

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    I am currently making great effort to maintain peace with neighbors, Carthage and Babylonia. I have to, because as I have said I have not been as succesful at spamming 50 tiles of forest with lumbermills and another couple dozen tiles with barracks, and then somehow maintain a ginormous army. Then again, my mistakes may well be that I should have focused on improvements before units. There is a lot for me to adapt to for sure, so I can't be too hard on the game, especially since it's in alpha. I initially had a low opinion, but I'm having more fun as time passes...and not playing a game where my dynasty is wiped out by RNG.

    I'm not quite grocking yet the value of diplomats and chancellors. I think you spend several hundred in civics to designate a personality with one of these roles, then you sit around waiting to accrue several hundred more civics in order assign them to another civ, tribe, or family within your own empire. I think at that point they go away for a while and come back with an event that will afford the opportunity for improving their opinion of you.

    I hope that's how it works anyway. I don't want to find out that the events that improve relations only appear through the whims of fate and are not connected to my assignments.

    I think Soren Johnson still has a fairly old-school mentality about 4X, that it is about Roman-style viral expansion. So, the need to prepare for inevitable invasion may be here to stay. One thing to bear in mind is that orders were intended to be a constraining factor for ginormous armies, so as it turning out not be all that restrictive, we may see some more restrictions. Hopefully, not a hard cap on units, but also not something as flimsy as Civ Vi's increased maintenance costs.

    The thing that is really tough to adjust to is that A) melee units seem to suffer no damage from attacking, and B) units from tribes and barbarians seem to be able to attack without adjacency. Maybe raiders are ranged units, or they can attack and teleport back.
     
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  19. DaviddesJ

    DaviddesJ Deity

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    Backgammon has more strategy than chess. If you want to distinguish between strategy and tactics, then chess is more tactical.

    That's completely wrong. You can realistically plan for random outcomes in backgammon even though the dice rolls are truly random.

    If you were an actual historical nation then you actually would have people get sick and die, or neighboring nations become hostile and attack you, for no predictable reason. Those are good elements of a historical strategy game like this one.

    Whether there's "too much" randomness or unpredictability in Old World, I don't know yet. Haven't played the current version enough. But it's definitely good to have quite a bit.
     
  20. Casualty of war

    Casualty of war Prince

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    Every city build category has, essentially, a Workshop. I've discovered that Forums pay back huge dividends, as that means you can get your Archives and Libraries up quickly, run a quick Festival if need be.

    I need to get Garrisons up quicker, because I'm wasting talent that could be a Governor. Wood is so scarce and precious that I think everyone beelines Forestry as best as the cards will allow.

    I've had other cultures up into the 400's and as Furious as -1000. It does have an effect. I've played a bit with Diplomats too, and it seemed like I was getting Events more frequently specific to that culture but I don't know for sure. I have not gotten to mess with Spymasters yet.

    There is so much I love about Old World. Ok, the game where Prince Puppy Strangler turned into an amazing king was a bit disturbing but otherwise.... :)
     
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