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Specialists from Natives

Discussion in 'Civ4Col - We The People' started by ConjurerDragon, Mar 10, 2020.

  1. ConjurerDragon

    ConjurerDragon Warlord Supporter

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    With the 3 ways to learn ingame (learning-by-doing and a percentage chance to improve your status, schooling or learning from Natives) I find the learning by Natives method to be a bit unbalanced.

    Schools need to be built and pupils maintained in them so that way costs building capacity and food and some time,
    learning-by-doing takes much longer due to the low chance, but costs only the difference between having a specialist and the unit actually doing the job.

    Learning from Natives in my games seems to be completely free, with guaranteed success (at least I do not remember to have ever had an Indentured Servant/Free Colonist drop out of the village and fail).
    Which is worse, it seems not to be limited. In my current game I had the luck to have a village with Fisherman specialists (at the coast near my own colony) and I carried a dozen Indentured Servants there.
    12 Indentured Servants asking to stay in the level 1 village - no problem, all were welcome and the villiage stayed level 1...

    I suggest to (if that is possible) to:
    - add a low chance that Indentured Servants may drop out of the village, e.g. by "accidentally insulting the Natives due to their lack of manners" (after all Petty Criminals are not allowed at all into the Villages and villages can temporarily boycott you from trading when you nag them too much about bartering);
    - either have a hard limit on how many colonists can live with the Natives in one village (e.g. "village level 1 = maximum of 1 colonist living with the natives) or have the colonists that live with Natives be actually used by the Natives during their stay (e.g. making that village a temporary level 2 village - or in my extreme example from village 1 to village 13...) so that not only the colonsits learn the specialty but the Natives have an advantage of their stay too and are able to harvest/hunt more,
    - have all native units you can get be unable to learn from Natives: Most native units (e.g. native slaves, native mercenaries) are already unable to learn from Natives but "Converted Natives" you get from missions will appear in one turn in the vilage from which you just converted them - and right in the next turn you can send them back into their own village to become a specialist - which contradicts everything historical about the spanish missions and reduces "Converted Natives" to "Converted Natives for a day" because you can turn them into specialists immediately (if their village has a needed specialty, if not a few days longer).
    All natives units you get under your control should be unable to learn from Natives, because by joning you and the christian faith they have turned their back on their ancestral ways and are striving to join your colony and get schooled or worked to become educated.
     
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2020
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  2. raystuttgart

    raystuttgart Civ4Col Modder

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    There is one major difference between those 3 methods of "Training / Education":
    The limitation of professions available to be trained.

    There are several other differences as well.
    (Flexibility/Versatility, Costs, travel distance, ...)

    Living with Natives: it is limitted to only specific "Native Expertises" and not all might be available in Native Villages around you.
    --> If those are available though, it is definitely the best / most efficient training method to use. (Fast and no additional costs.)
    --> However the "Living with Natives" is blocked for some Units (e.g. Criminals and Slaves)
    --> Also you will have a travel distance to the Native Village and back.
    --> While your Colnists is living there he does not produce Yields (like he would with "Learning by Doing").

    School System: it is limitted to only those "Expertises" that you already have in the City.
    --> For "low Education Experts" this might be considered because you will not have the "Worker" woring on Plot, but in School. (I personally prefer LbD.)
    --> For "medium Education Experts" this is usually still a good method to use. (I consider it better than LbD.)
    --> For "high Education Experts" this is usually the best method to use. (I consider it much better than LbD.)

    "Learning by doing": it works for everything (even while doing outdoor profession) but it is slow and not 100% deterministic.
    --> It is basically your only choice for specific Units (e.g. Petty Criminals and Slaves - which first need to become free though)
    --> This is usually the best choice for simple "Plot workers". (I consider it the best alternative, because it also produces Yields in the meantime)
    --> It can be used for "medium and high Education Experts" as well, if really wanted. (But it simply takes too long for them.)

    ----------

    There is absolutely no question, that for "Native Expertises", the "Living with Natives" is the best System to use.
    But it is simply limitted to only these Native Expertises and not all of them might be available near you in Native Villages.

    The other 2 Systems have advantages too though. They are especially more versatile.

    School System: It is usually the best system for Building Workers - "medium and high Education".
    (It does have costs but is fast and reliable but of course, you need to have these Experts in your City.)

    "Learning by Doing": It is the only system for e.g. Petty Criminals and Slaves and usually the best system for "low Education" (because no costs).
    (It works for everything if no better alternative is availabe. It does not have any costs, but it is slow and relatively unpredictable.)

    ----------

    "Converted Natives" are actually really versatile (small bonus on all Plot Professiosn) and are thus ideally suited
    to use "LbD" to become an Expert (of Plot Professions) which you might need in a City but is not already available nearby in a Native Village.

    Especially with the new balancing we will publish with Release 2.7.3

    ----------

    Summary:

    It is not that easy to really compare these 3 Systems considering "value".
    All of them have advantages and disadvantages but if you understand them correctly there is always a "best choice" considering the current game situation.

    ----------

    @ConjurerDragon

    We already had this here in TAC / RaR and had lots of community complaints because of it:
    (That is why it was reverted again to current rules. It is a simply XML setting though.)

    Preventing "Converted Natives" to be trained in Native Villages. :c5unhappy:
    (Some people liked it, many casual players hated it.)

    There is one aspect I do like in your suggestion though:

    Only allow one Expert at a time to be trained in a Native Village. :c5happy:
    (I would make this a "Human only" rule though, because I would not want to mess with AI for this small chage.)

    The rest is too much effort for too little benefit. :dunno:
    - Indentured Servants accidently insutling Natives when living with them
    - Increasing Village Population (and thus giving work force to Natives) when a Colonist is living with them
     
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2020
  3. OzzyKP

    OzzyKP Emperor

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    I agree with Conjurer, it is too powerful. I support banning converted natives from learning from natives. I like the idea that sometimes your person would get killed and anger tribe. I support the one at a time change too.

    Some other ideas:
    - You have to pay the natives some money for them to train you.
    - The time to train escalates the more you train in a particular village.
    - There be some diplomatic penalty for training too much, or a temporary cool down period like when you can’t trade for a few turns after bartering too much.
     
  4. ConjurerDragon

    ConjurerDragon Warlord Supporter

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    Simple enough that I could edit it myself for my games? If so, how?
     
  5. raystuttgart

    raystuttgart Civ4Col Modder

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    Yes, of course. :)

    In Civ4UnitInfos.xml for UNIT_CONVERTED_NATIVE

    Change
    <iNativeLearnTime>6</iNativeLearnTime>
    to this:
    <iNativeLearnTime>-1</iNativeLearnTime>

    ----------

    One day, when I am really motivated and have the time, I should really give some guide for XML-modders.
    (Currently however, I am simply too busy - if I want to keep working on the mod as well.)

    ----------
    By the way:
    I am not sure if changing this setting for a running game (loading a save game) might cause issues.
    Please only change it before starting a new game.
     
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2020
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  6. XSamatan

    XSamatan Chieftain

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    Yes, please!
     
  7. ConjurerDragon

    ConjurerDragon Warlord Supporter

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    Which is not exactly what I meant. In my example it was a level 1 village with 12 Indentured Servants who could become Fisherman and which should be limited, e.g. to 1 "trainee" at a time in the sense of 1 trainee / village level.

    However if it is a levl 8 native city (e.g. one of the more advanced citybuilders like the Aztecs) then the city would be larger and could sustain more trainees than 1.
     
  8. raystuttgart

    raystuttgart Civ4Col Modder

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    It is very bad / difficult to visualize.
    It is also a bit more effort to implement.

    That is why I will most likely make it a "one trainee per village at a time" rule and nobody should complain. :dunno:
     
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2020
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  9. OzzyKP

    OzzyKP Emperor

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    Another idea is to tie it to the new trading post mechanic and require a trading post before the village willtrain someone.
     
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  10. Guynemer

    Guynemer King

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    Trading post or mission, I'd think.
     
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  11. ConjurerDragon

    ConjurerDragon Warlord Supporter

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    If just "first contact" would be the trigger to allow training, then usually a scout or even a ship that comes for trade are usually contacting native villages far before I have missionaries establishing permanent missions. And I would see no reason to prevent occasional trading without a trading post. Wasn’t that in the original Colonization that you could not trade with Natives with ships unless you made contact with them before?
     
  12. Nightinggale

    Nightinggale Deity

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    I'm not sure I won't complain. It might nerf native training a bit too much. What should happen if 3 free colonists try to train at the same time? Queue or should the train button vanish? What about the AI? (is it even using this feature?). If the AI should plan training units, then it will be very confused if being able to perform the start training action will toggle between allowed and disallowed.
     
  13. Atlas627

    Atlas627 Deity

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    The AI definitely uses Native Training, though I'm not sure if it does multiple at the same time/place. I think forcing the village to train only 1 at a time makes sense. After all, the progress bar only shows the status of the next unit to finish training. Sometimes I forget how many units are being trained!
     
  14. raystuttgart

    raystuttgart Civ4Col Modder

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    Maybe my post was badly formulated, because I meant this:
    "one trainee per village at a time" rule

    So you could of course train another Conlinstst in a village after the current one has finished.

    And no, I would not change anything else considering rules fof "Living with Natives".
    (This feature should stay relatively simple.)

    Yes, the display is really implemented already for a "one trainee per village at a time" rule. :yup:

    I even believe that was the originally intention for the screen design - trying to make it similar to "Original Col" - but the programmer later coding the logic most likely never player "Original Col".

    In fact I once heard the rumor that most of the programmers had never played Original Col - only the lead designer and a few others had.
    So basically they just coded what they were told without really knowing what the old fans would be expecting ...

    It really would not nerf it that much. :dunno:

    It would only prevent parallel training of several Colonists in a single village.
    And if you have many Native Villages around, you could still train many Colonists in them.

    Actually in "Original Col" the feature "Living with Natives" was much more limitted / nerfed. (Which I did not like though.)
    You could only train a colonist once a village ever. So after 1 Colonist had trained in the Village that Village did not allow further training ever.

    The button would simply be disabled / greyed out.
    And you would also get a message at mouse over the button, e.g. "Another Foreigner is already living with the Natives in this village.".

    As I already said, I would not change anything for AI.
    This would be a "Human only" rule.

    And yes, AI is using "Living with Natives".
    It however does not use it as extensively or exploitive as a Human player could.

    ----------

    Summary:

    I personally mainly consider this an improvement (balancing and UI) and removing a possible exploit (massively training Experts simultaneously in one single village). :dunno:
    The "Living with Natives" itself will still be really useful. It will still stay the most efficient way to get "Experts for New World Plants".

    But of course, if a team member does not like it, it will not be implemented. :thumbsup:
     
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2020
  15. XSamatan

    XSamatan Chieftain

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    Actually, this is one of my "house rules" :)

    It's not realistic, however I would suggest binding the living with Natives feature stronger with the relation to the tribe (maybe not for AI). I'm not sure at which level of hostile feelings you can't train any more, however for my that point comes too late.

    Regards
    XSamatan
     
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  16. devolution

    devolution Prince

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    We have bigger fish to fry ,so I don't see why we should use our limited resources to nerf a feature that works well. The AI is free to (ab)use this feature as well and it's on my list of stuff to improve anyway.
     
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2020
  17. raystuttgart

    raystuttgart Civ4Col Modder

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    Ok, I will leave it as it is. :thumbsup:
    (Of course I accept the opinion of team members.)

    But as I said, all I would have done is this:
    (effort would have been quite low)

    "one trainee per village at a time" rule
    (for "Human only" to prevent any side effects for AI)
     
  18. devolution

    devolution Prince

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    I would not make this a human only rule due to the game already being riddled with !isHuman() checks. The goal IMHO should be to have all AI cheats determined by the the handicap XML file only!
     
  19. raystuttgart

    raystuttgart Civ4Col Modder

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    Ideally it would not be "Human only", I agree with that. :thumbsup:
    Most likely though, the Human player would never notice it ingame.

    ---------

    The cases that AI would really train more than 1 Colonist per village are really rare.
    But it could theoretically happen.

    It would simply drastically reduce my effort because I would not need to check or adjust AI.
    It is also safer and less risky considering bugs.

    ---------

    We should not change general game mechanics rules by Handicap.
    It is either a general rule or it will not be a rule at all.

    The only thing that should be changed by Handicap are modifiers (including specific bonusses for AI).
    (Diplomacy Bonusses, Cost reductions, FoundingFatherPoint reductions, Speed to build Buildings, ...)

    A change in Handicap should never give AI a complete new game rule because that could also cause bugs and confusion.
    It should only give modifiers to existing game rules.

    But for me, it is ok, if AI generally plays by sligthly different rules, if Human players do not notice ingame.
    (It is simply sometimes better considering efforts, risks of bugs and performance.)

    I understand though, that you and other community members disagree with that. :thumbsup:
    I can only offer changes and features though, if my effort is reasonable and I am confident that I will not introduce unnecessary bugs. :dunno:

    ---------

    But as I said, I will leave it as it is. :thumbsup:
    I understand that the team does not like it.
     
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2020
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