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Starting as a Tribe

Discussion in 'Gedemon's Civilization, a total overhaul project' started by Gedemon, Jul 12, 2017.

  1. Gedemon

    Gedemon Modder Moderator

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    Not directly related but the discussion about disbanding units reminds me that I have some gameplay mechanisms for units that I'd like to share

    First, since some time (ie civ5 time) I'm pondering some change to the helicopter units to make it less of a land unit and more of an air unit.

    - Helicopter could "rebase"
    - Helicopter should move like a land unit, being able to capture and attack other units, but at the end of the turn (or after using all moves) they should return to their current "base"
    - AA units should use "opportunity fire" against helicopter (need DLL)
    - Helicopter should be able to hover over water during their turn (and could be based on specific ships) (may not be possible even with DLL source)

    Now I think that the second point (returning to a specific plot at end of turn) is already possible on the code side, and could have multiple usage (like slow down a bit expension in early game, maybe useful with historical spawn dates)

    - Early "tribe" unit (settler with small combat value, one movement point and no ability to build city) linked to a early scout unit (4 movement points but teleported back to the tribe unit at the end of the turn)
    - Early militia units, teleported back to a city after x turns or when loosing their supply line

    About unit losing a fight with low morale, disbanding is a possibility, with parts of the components (personnel, materiel, equipment,...) returned to the closest city, or even the unit itself at some additional cost in health/components

    Edit: about the "tribe start", you'll get research point dependind on the food resources near the tribe unit, then the ability to create a city when sailing, trapping or agriculture has been discovered.
     
  2. Laurentinum

    Laurentinum Chieftain

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    So essentially a melee unit, but with a range of more than 1? Don't units which can move after attacking do the same thing?

    I guess you can apply attrition damage to Helicopters which end their turn outside a city, same with the early militia and "tribe".

    Edit: About the tribe and nomadic mechanic, is Rising Tide aquatic city-style movement possible?
     
  3. Gedemon

    Gedemon Modder Moderator

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    No "range", but 8 or more movement points for the Helicopter and no terrain cost.

    Attrition would penalize the AI a lot as I have no way to override its units control (to move them back near their cities)

    Kind of the same problem I have with healing naval units in harbors (cities) without supply lines: when the AI will know that it can buit and use a navy (hopefully in some patch to come), it will be penalized a lot if I do not switch to a supply line mechanism like land units (which still penalize it, but less)


    I haven't played with BE or its extension, what's the mechanism?
     
  4. Laurentinum

    Laurentinum Chieftain

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    Basically, in Beyond Earth: Rising Tide, cities could be founded on water tiles and then be moved around. It appeared in the production list as "Move City", and required several turns to move one tile at the time.


    (Skip to 01:00)

    I highly doubt that VI's engine will allow it, but if it is possible, we now have a way to add proper nomadic cities to the game.
     
  5. Gedemon

    Gedemon Modder Moderator

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    Yes, no easy way to do it, same for a tribe unit able to build something for example, maybe not impossible but too much work for my available modding time.

    But collecting and converting resources should be possible at the unit level.
     
  6. dunkleosteus

    dunkleosteus Lieutenant Commander

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    I think we may be jumping ahead of ourselves a bit. Nomadic cities aren't really cities. Nomadic people do not move as a joint body of thousands of people. Fishing and trapping/hunting are not sustainable ways of founding a city, ie there are very few examples of villages/towns established without agriculture, exceptions being some very early sites at jericho (10k years ago, but no more than 1000 people) and catal hayuk in Turkey (7000 BC I think? and 4000 people) which shows no signs of agriculture but large bone dumps from hunting. Catal hayuk is considered an exception rather than a good example. Notable about Catal Hayuk is that there is no evidence of government or hierarchy: some buildings are larger than others but all buildings were houses- no structures existed that could be considered administrative or commercial buildings.

    Basically, hunting and gathering is the economic structure that predated civilization and settling a city or village without the ability to farm is impossible. The upper limit of the population of a pre-agriculture town is the population you begin the game with (3500) so, I would strongly recommend against letting civs settle with any tech other than agriculture.

    On the point of nomadic peoples, they were very dispersed and were not able to have self-sufficient economies: they rely on other people for support in resource management (nomadic people cannot operate mines or metalsmelting due to the large time requirement involved). Although Civ has always featured nomadic civilizations, if we choose to actually represent them as nomads, we would have to take many of the basic needs of a city away from them.
     
  7. dunkleosteus

    dunkleosteus Lieutenant Commander

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    If the game begins pre-agriculture, (something I too have thought about since Civ 5 times), I had a few ideas back then. May not mesh with your plans, but I'll put it out there: since early people were hunter-gatherers, I thought it would be interesting to start with 2 (although if you want a tribe unit, 3) units. A hunter, a gatherer and a tribe. The hunter has stone spears and combat ability. The gatherer has weak combat but better movement.

    These two types of unit are used to gather resources (for the tribe, I guess). When fortified on top of a viable resource, each type of unit can accumulate food or other goods for the tribe. Gatherers can accumulate food from wheat, rice, and food-type plantation resources (citrus for example). Hunters can gather from deer, cattle, horses, etc. Any animal resource.

    As food is generated for the tribe, the tribe can grow. To discover agriculture, you need a combination of culture (or something else) and people (which increases as you get food). Because the culture component isn't generated by every type of resource, it is also possible to spend your tribe's people to make more hunters or gatherers. This may also be important if a nearby civ or city state decides to attack you instead of being peaceful (for example if you find a very valuable tile, they may try to take it from you).

    edit: Maybe when you settle your city, your gatherers become something like a builder with a single charge and the hunters become scouts or something. If you rush to found your city first, you don't start with as many units. If you make more units, you delay founding your first city.

    If you want to force units to stay near the tribe, you can put a limit on how far from the tribe your units can gather from and I've always thought it would be interesting if only the tribe could reveal tiles (ie gatherers and hunters would have fog of war adjacent to them if they left sight of the tribe)

    Another possibility (although some people may find this controversial, though I believe it's historically accurate) that in hunter-gatherer societies, men were usually hunters and women were gatherers. This is because hunting is more physically demanding and dangerous- it requires a lot of movement and often stealth as well. Gathering is much more sedentary- even though you sometimes had to move to new areas if you exhausted your resources, a lot of the time it only required people to search loosely through the forest or grasslands. Tasks like this are much more social, make it easy for pregnant women and women with small children or babies and is much less dangerous. The danger aspect is very important for these early tribes: women are the most important factor in the prosperity of the tribe. If 10% of the women in a tribe die, the tribe will have 10% fewer babies for years, probably taking a decade or more to recover. If 10% of the men die, you could conceivably still maintain the same birthrate.

    I remember an article I read somewhere that claimed that genetic evidence indicates that people have 12 times as many female ancestors as male ancestors. If men had a very high mortality rate, this would make sense that few men fathered many children.

    If this is what you decide to do, it would mean your gatherers would be the tribe itself, and if you lost it, you would lose. Does sort of make the idea of making new gatherers impossible however.

    Regardless, I want to communicate that at this time in history, there were only hunters and gatherers. There was no "tribe" aside from that- everyone was responsible for feeding themselves. Before agriculture there werent any other professions.

    If this is the case, you get rid of the tribe completely and allow any two units you have come together to generate a new unit. When you found a city, you need to bring all of your units together and their combined population starts the city. Extra hunters or gathers might upgrade to scouts or builders at this point.
     
  8. Gedemon

    Gedemon Modder Moderator

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    Thanks, good points about Agriculture over Hunting and all units being the "tribe". What about coastal cities ? Were they possible before Agriculture ?

    I'd like one of the unit to have the ability to "store"/convert a small amount of resources and to have the attribute "population" that would represent the tribe size.

    We can't have mechanisms that require movement coding for AI unit (unless someone manage to unlock it before the DLL source is available), so having a separate population/stock attribute for each unit then merge them back is not really possible. And if all units have those attributes, it would look like controlling multiple "tribes", wouldn't it ?

    In my idea, the "tribe" unit has that role of central place, and the "scout" represent the gatherer/hunters parties looking for food in the near area, but still being a part of the "tribe" with a return to it at the end of each turn.

    Maybe we could have a "settlement"/"Encampment"/pre-settler unit, and hunter/gatherer as one or two units. Two units (three with the "central" unit) with different characteristics may be better for gameplay but raise the problem of coding the ability to make a choice if we allow units creation before cities.

    Or as you propose, the gatherer is the "central" unit, that makes a lot of sense.

    About distance, a "soft" limit bring again the problem of AI controlled units, that's why I propose a mandatory return to the central unit (or x turn. I'd like to limit the zone in which the whole tribe could move during that phase, maybe by continent or a radius around the starting plot (by putting invisible mountains at the limit of the zone) to maintain "true" (or at least "regional") starting location on corresponding maps.

    I'm unsure about the possibility to code units with a vision of their tiles only, but if it is I'm fine with testing it.

    Another important discussion : what to do during that phase, how long, for which effects ?

    Some thoughts :

    • What to do ?
      • finding a perfect spot for the first city
      • collecting resources to "growth" or "spawn" new units
      • progressing in early techs by our actions (finding/collecting resources, fighting, ...)
      • fighting other ("barbarians" or player) nearby tribes to steal their food/resources/population
    • how long ?
      • a fixed number of turn ? 5 ? 10 ? more ? less ? then "Agriculture" is discovered and every player can settle a city
      • until researching "Agriculture", which could take a different amount of turns depending on our actions
    • which effects ?
      • bigger population or more units when settling the first city
      • advancement in researching some techs
      • a specific civilization "trait" depending of the actions during the pre-agriculture phase
    edit: about nomadic civilization even after agriculture, that's a possibility, but with separate units spawning rules that would make them AI only (unless coding a whole new UI for the human players, something I can't do by myself, too much work)
     
  9. dunkleosteus

    dunkleosteus Lieutenant Commander

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    We're not sure exactly how early simple boats were developed, but it's possible coastal hunter-gatherers practiced fishing in some way. They deffinitey took advantage of sea-resources such as shellfish and seaweed that was available on the beach or within swimming distance of it.


    Moderator Action: All posts above, this one included, have been copied and some may have been edited to fit the topic, but the original (unedited) posts are still available in the main thread - Gedemon
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 27, 2017
  10. Boris Gudenuf

    Boris Gudenuf Warlord

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    There is indirect evidence of extremely early boating/rafting skills: Crete, an island, shows evidence of human settlement going back 30,000 years. More specifically, there is evidence for both settlement and off-shore fishing around the Aegean Islands going back to 7000 BCE (approximately). I would suggest that 'Boating' (not Sailing, for which the earliest depictions date to about 2000 BCE) could be a very early Technology, but only if you have a Purpose: islands visible off-shore with resources on them, or Seafood in abundance that cannot be accessed directly from shore.

    Also, don't forget the ability to access food resources from large rivers and lakes. A number of early village sites have been excavated/investigated around lakes in what is now Switzerland and the British Isles, and the (hunter-gathering) Native American tribes of the Pacific Northwest harvested seafood ranging from whales off-shore (in dug-out canoes as big as Triremes!) to salmon on the Columbia River, to shellfish at the seashore, using a variety of very sophisticated harpooning/netting/trapping techniques.

    In another example, the tribes of Northeastern America (New England) often had two villages or settlements: one inland for winter and hunting, one at the seashore for fishing/shellfish gathering in the summer - only those crazy Europeans (with, of course an entirely different set of 'technologies') tried to live at the New England coast during a North Atlantic winter!
     
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  11. JonnyH13

    JonnyH13 Chieftain

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    Have you thought of pushing the start date back to Prehistory like the older Civ 4 mods such as Rise of Mankind or Caveman2cosmos? With how the resource capture from enemy units works, you can easily create a hunting gathering system with it. Just have early Barbarians be animals and find a way to either make their spawning map based instead of camp based or simply rename the camps to something else for that age. Also pushing back the start date allows for more diversified civilizations which could go well with dynamic nation selection as mentioned in the other thread.
     
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  12. Killzerslaul

    Killzerslaul Chieftain

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    this isn't a good feature imo. its just kind of a minigame that doesn't have a meaningful relationship with the real meat of the game's mechanics and historical theme.
     
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  13. Boris Gudenuf

    Boris Gudenuf Warlord

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    There were also a couple of 'Prehistory' Mods for Civ V, which I played a little bit of.

    I've been of mixed feelings about pushing the Start Date back.

    On the one hand, there are a lot of In-Game Technologies that date back before 4000 BCE, sometimes long before: Agriculture, Animal Husbandry/Domestication, Boating, Pottery, to name a few. Hunting/Military weapons like the throwing spear, atlatl, bow, and weighted club also date back long before 4000 BCE for a variety of potential 'Pre-Game' Units.

    On the other hand, the game is Civilization, which By Definition implies City Building, and you can count the number of cities known to be founded before 4000 BCE with fingers left over. You can count the number of 'Cities' with Any evidence of Specialization or Heirarchy as opposed to being merely a concentration of separate families, with enough fingers left over to play guitar...

    So, as mentioned by Killzerslauf, most of this Early Game is really going to be a sort of Pre-Game Exploration, without even the ability to identify, let alone Exploit, many of the Resources.

    I think now that we can get the same effects using two new Start Mechanisms:

    1. Allow, as I've posted elsewhere, a variety of Starting Technologies based on Starting Location plus Choice. For example, if you have a Starting Position on the coast or within 2 tiles of the coast, you have a possible Starting Choice of Boating - which will give you access to coastal resources like Fish or Shellfish as well as coastal transport of some units. If your Starting Position is mostly Desert, Plains or Tundra, your Starting Tech choice should include Animal Husbandry (or its equivalent) because early Farming/Agriculture is strictly a marginal proposition in those terrains, without Irrigation or other 'additional' Technologies. This would allow the Results of a lot of the Pre-Game without grinding through a bunch of turns wandering around the map.
    2. Increase the Starting Radius of vision, or allow Selective Vision into the Fog area. By Selective Vision I mean something like Mountains and Coastlines and Major Rivers should be features that will be known from a distance even if you haven't visited them yourselves lately. The idea that a people could start as nomads in 4000 BCE not knowing that they are on an island, or that the coast of an Ocean is 4 tiles to their west, is simply ridiculous.
    The Start Position, then, would include not only the known immediate vicinity of your people, but also indications of Major Terrain Features within, say, a 5 - 8 tile radius without any of the details out that far, like the fact that there is a Barbarian Camp on the coast or where specific Resources are located - save that for In Game Exploration...
     
  14. Knasp

    Knasp Chieftain

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    The pre-historic part can be optional. The default choice could still be Ancient era or whatever people prefer. But I like the idea of starting techs (4000 BC) being somewhat determined by starting location (features, terrain in the vicinity).

    The problem with "revealed" terrain and exploration in general, in my mind, is that you record perfect information about places that you've only visited once (before map making). I would love to see the Fog hiding details and even distort details (if possible). Also, when people have been more or less sedentary for some generations they're likely to forget the grander continental landscape. Stories about foreign lands will be remembered and told, but you'd also have excessive exaggerations and distortions.

    Finally, I think a prehistoric start can be quite interesting but it needs to be kept short, without excessive techs, even if it's a marathon game. Also it should be kept quite dynamic and intuitive.
     
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2017
  15. Boris Gudenuf

    Boris Gudenuf Warlord

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    You pretty much have to assume that whenever you start, your 'tribe'/Settler just wandered into the area from Somewhere Else. Otherwise, you have to account for the fact that they've been wandering around your Start Position for some time without learning anything, which has been pretty much the 'standard' Civ Position since Civ I and makes as little sense now as it did then. The problem with 'random errors' in the knowledge of the surrounding area is that some knowledge is more useful than others, so it isn't really Random: not knowing that there is a solid line of mountains 5 tiles that away is not nearly as important as knowing that there is a Barbarian Camp spawning Horsemen and Horse Archers 4 tiles in the other direction, or a coastline nearby teeming with Fish.

    In fact, some terrain features are simply impossible not to know about. Oceans and Mountains, large multi-tile lakes are just hard to miss, especially since any river or stream that you are following in the neighborhood will either flow out of or into one or the other - built-in roadmaps to them, you might say. On the other hand, the location of game, animals, fishing spots, sources of useful Resources may be hard to find, and any locals may not be willing to share them with you. I suggest that the presence of a Coastline or Mountain tile within X tiles' distance (X depending on the size of the map) should be Accurate, but the existence of Forests, Resources, Camps and such should all be about half missing, at least.

    With a very few historical exceptions most of such an Era will be semi-nomadic Hunter-Gathering. Your ability to settle down and start building a 'city' will pretty much depend on what incredibly favorable Terrain/Resource combination you stumble on. To make it really work, you either have to have a wildly improbably number of such sites on the map, or the game has to have a viable (at least in the Ancient/Classical Era-equivalents) alternative to settled City Building: the Nomad/Pastoral Culture that has been talked about a lot in various threads on these Forums back in Civ V days. Considering that groups as different as the Huns, Scythians, Native Americans in the Pacific Northwest, Central Plains, and Northeastern Woodlands, and virtually all Celtic groups outside of Gaul/southern Germany until the mid-Classical Era, all had very complex and distinctive and formidable (in their time and place) military power, but none of them built 'cities' in any accepted sense, that provision is long, long overdue in the game.
     
  16. gaborpesti

    gaborpesti Chieftain

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    I am not sure whether I agree with you: Nomadic tribes do not migrate fast (on foot) and in absence of writing their ability to capture history, therefore geography they personally have not visited is absymal as well. So the size of known region in vanilla civ seems legit. Do not forget how many year a turn translates into 4000 BC
     

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