Strategic Resources (and potential additions for Civ VII)

Leyrann

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Another thought, on the topic of mounts: What do you think about the idea of region specific "mounts" as different strategic resources? We've already had Horses and Elephants in some of the previous games, and Camels have also made an appearance in Civ5, although not as an actual resource. Are there other examples of animals being used as mounts in combat historically?

None that spring to mind for me. New World animals were not fit for domestication, neither were zebras, and as far as I'm aware big cats like tigers are strictly confined to the realm of fiction, no matter how awesome.

We as humanity didn't actually domesticate all that many species, it's like a few dozen in total and that's if you include rabbits and bees and the like.

I do know it's technically possible to ride cows, and that they can even jump higher than horses if properly trained, but I'm not aware of any society actually using them to ride, certainly not for combat.
 

bene_legionary

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Another thought, on the topic of mounts: What do you think about the idea of region specific "mounts" as different strategic resources? We've already had Horses and Elephants in some of the previous games, and Camels have also made an appearance in Civ5, although not as an actual resource. Are there other examples of animals being used as mounts in combat historically?

Looking on wikipedia, there hasn't been any other animals used as mounts practically. Moose were trained by the Swedes and the Soviets once but they weren't very good at it.

Cavalry units using horses should have horse upkeep, because losing horses in battle means that you need more of them. Horses were commonly used as draft animals and something like a policy card or a special action could allow a unit to spend horses in return for more movement points, or use horses as upkeep to increase their movement points.

I'm thinking that the distinction between horse cavalry units and elephant cavalry units is really Euro-centric (and East-asian centric, too). But there's no good solution to this problem, so we're going to have to go with it.

Commodities sound interesting. I wonder why you can't make cheese from cows or truffle oil from truffles or things like that for export. Monopolies and Corporations was supposed to be like that but I haven't played it because of how broken it sounds. Maybe sending a trade route and selecting a resource to trade (instead of the yields from buildings and districts) would give the yields to the destination city. I remember reading an article where one of the designers had thought about it but didn't develop the idea enough. This mechanic could be better with commodities being derived from basic resources, then again you need to consider resources like wood -> paper and others. And micromanagement, stockpiling, generally massive changes to the game that need constant revision. It's something for another thread or game.
 

Leyrann

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Monopolies and Corporations was supposed to be like that but I haven't played it because of how broken it sounds.

Except for the ridiculous tourism bonus from monopolies (which I suspect can be modded pretty easily, though I haven't looked into it yet) it's pretty balanced.
 
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But I'm a greedy person, and I want more. I think the most obvious candidate is copper, which could serve as a bridge towards iron later on like in Civ IV, and maybe a mechanic where copper can be used to make bronze for specific purposes? In fact, perhaps a similar thing could be extended to several other resources as well. Another one would be ivory, which could serve as a luxury/strategic resource double like in Civ IV, where it's used for the War Elephant unit. I really liked that bit of flavor.
I've mentioned it on several threads but I'd like for each resource, well at least each luxury resource, to have their own unique bonus if you own a corporation for them. For example the ivory corporation would allow you to build a War Elephant unit. I think the idea of corporations with unique bonuses could be added to strategic resources as well.

About strategic resources what are the chances that certain buildings in order to build them require a certain stockpile of resources? I at least think this would fit historically such as a watermill would require a certain amount of stone and wood (have woods). Maybe add in clay as a resource that unlocks visibility with pottery in order to build a granary etc.
 
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But I'm a greedy person, and I want more. I think the most obvious candidate is copper, which could serve as a bridge towards iron later on like in Civ IV, and maybe a mechanic where copper can be used to make bronze for specific purposes? In fact, perhaps a similar thing could be extended to several other resources as well. Another one would be ivory, which could serve as a luxury/strategic resource double like in Civ IV, where it's used for the War Elephant unit. I really liked that bit of flavor.

Another thought, on the topic of mounts: What do you think about the idea of region specific "mounts" as different strategic resources? We've already had Horses and Elephants in some of the previous games, and Camels have also made an appearance in Civ5, although not as an actual resource. Are there other examples of animals being used as mounts in combat historically?

It could be that resources for units are become generic. Cavalry need 'mounts', Swordsmen need metal, Frigates need explosives, etc. You then could make a choice of turning your Ivory into mounts or a luxury, your copper into metal or production, etc. A iron or horse resource would produce a lot more metal or mounts but fewer luxuries. A swordsman take 10 metal, a knight take 50 mounts and 50 metal. A battleship takes 1000 metal so you need to build a smelter in your industrial zone which increases the rate of conversion from iron to metal.
 
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None that spring to mind for me. New World animals were not fit for domestication, neither were zebras, and as far as I'm aware big cats like tigers are strictly confined to the realm of fiction, no matter how awesome.

We as humanity didn't actually domesticate all that many species, it's like a few dozen in total and that's if you include rabbits and bees and the like.

I do know it's technically possible to ride cows, and that they can even jump higher than horses if properly trained, but I'm not aware of any society actually using them to ride, certainly not for combat.

Humans originally had several different breeds of equines to choose from, including at least 4 distinct different breeds of horses which were mostly hunted for food originally (before about 4000 BCE)
The key change appears now (horses and their domestication is a ferociously debated subject among the scientific community that are interested in that sort of thing) to have been keeping the meat animals around near where humans were - sort of 'semi-domestication', and then intentionally or not, breeding for docility and ability to bear weight on their backs. Those traits have been tracked to two specific genes and were so useful that DNA studies have shown that technically there are no 'wild' horses left in the world: all are descended from or interbred with the 'domestic' genes established between about 4800 - 4200 BCE.
- And riding horses came somewhat later. Again, precise dates are much debated, but between about 4300 and 3700 BCE evidence for riding steadily mounts until it is now accepted that among herding peoples with access to horses, riding was general by the last date all over central Asia and eastern Europe.

Adding to the general debate, donkeys and mules were also both ridden and used as draft animals - the earliest 'war carts' in Mesopotamia were donkey or mule-drawn, since the horse wasn't introduced from the north until after the first carts are depicted in their artwork. Zebras, although related to horses, apparently have no genes at all for docility and so have never been successfully 'tamed' for riding.

On the other hand, in addition to elephants where available, the camel has been used as a military and civilian draft animal since at least 2200 BCE (Oxus Civilization, Bactrian camels as draft animals by that date) and as a military mount since at least Classical times (even the Roman Imperial Army had camel-mounted units, patrolling the desert frontier in North Africa and Egypt).

The other 'military animal' worth considering is the Reindeer or caribou. They are not suitable for riding, but have been used as draft animals by arctic/tundra/taiga natives in Asia for at least 3000 years and were used as winter draft animals as late as World War Two - both the German and Soviet armies organized 'reindeer' supply columns to move supplies in the winters north of Leningrad (St Petersburg) from 1942 to 1944.
 

Linklite

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I'm not a big fan of how oil is used for maintenance in modern era and how limiting that can be. Do we really want to expand that mechanic?
 

reddishrecue

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I'm not sure about the crude oil but was thinking about natural gas which can help global warming in later eras of civ 7. More anti oil units could give civilizations without oil a defending chance particularly if they have good technology.
 

Leyrann

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Leugi's Monopoly++ mod allows you to change the threshold at which the monopoly bonuses trigger. It's 60% by default. I set mine to 80%.

But does it change the tourism bonus? I don't have a big issue with the monopoly threshold - also it's often not too hard to get a 100% monopoly. Rather, my issue is that if you have just one monopoly, you can get something crazy like 150% bonus tourism. Like researching computers AND environmentalism 3 times over.

I'm not a big fan of how oil is used for maintenance in modern era and how limiting that can be. Do we really want to expand that mechanic?

Imo, the bigger issues with oil in civ 6 are both it's rarity (very often, you don't have any oil because all of it is off the coast of tiny islands or in snow, and if you're the first to reach the tech then by definition you can't trade for it) and it's location in the tech tree. It is revealed in the same column of the tech tree that also has the first units that requires oil (Biplane, which is also relevant for era score, and Infantry), and the majority of the oil isn't actually available yet at that point, requiring the atomic-era Refining tech that comes after units like the Tank.

In addition, it's also in the other leaf of the tech tree from Flight, and while you can have long discussions on whether more interconnections in the tech tree should be introduced in the first place, as it stands you either prioritize bottom and don't have Biplanes or Infantry, or prioritize top and don't have the resource for Biplanes and Infantry revealed.

I'm not sure about the crude oil but was thinking about natural gas which can help global warming in later eras of civ 7. More anti oil units could give civilizations without oil a defending chance particularly if they have good technology.

That's a good one. There are several locations in the world that are far richer in gas or oil than the other anyway - the North Sea for example has comparatively significantly more gas than oil. Perhaps if you lack one you can use the other as something of a stop-gap.

And indeed, gas power isn't as polluting as coal power (or, I think, oil power, though idk how many power plants actually run on oil).
 

reddishrecue

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That's a good one. There are several locations in the world that are far richer in gas or oil than the other anyway - the North Sea for example has comparatively significantly more gas than oil. Perhaps if you lack one you can use the other as something of a stop-gap.

And indeed, gas power isn't as polluting as coal power (or, I think, oil power, though idk how many power plants actually run on oil).
The issue with natural gas is that it is more expensive because it is cleaner than traditional crude oil which helps out environmental policies. Oil power however, will power more cheaper but it causes more pollution with less expenses.
 
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. . . And indeed, gas power isn't as polluting as coal power (or, I think, oil power, though idk how many power plants actually run on oil).

Can't speak to world-wide patterns, but this came up in regard to the USA in another Forum, and in fact Coal still provides (as of 2015) over half the US power supply, and Natural Gas and Oil-fired plants have never been more than a tiny fraction - even nuclear plants provide more electricity by a wide margin.
The 'cleanest' fixed power plants were hydroelectric (and, Fun Fact, a hydro plant at Niagrah Falls was the first one built in the USA to provide electric power to industry and residences) but more controversy is developing around them now because they massively change the water flow in the rivers where they are built, and that in turn massively effects erosion, potential irrigation, and habitat for Important Critters like salmon (That debate, in fact, started up here in the Pacific Northwest almost as soon as they started damming the Columbia River for irrigation and power, because there were treaties with the Native Tribes that said they would not mess with the salmon runs)
 

CoconutTank

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At least in Civ6, it always seems so strange to me that coal and niter have so little impact on the rest of the game, relative to what they contributed to in human history. Maybe it's just my play style, but I rarely ever get more than one Coal Power Plant (mostly just to fulfill the Refining eureka), and there are only two units that make use of Coal, which are naval units at that! Niter seems to be even more limited!

I wouldn't mind seeing more strategic resources, but some of the ones we have now need to be expanded a bit more. IMO Cuirassiers should probably require Niter instead of Iron, as an example.
 
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At least in Civ6, it always seems so strange to me that coal and niter have so little impact on the rest of the game, relative to what they contributed to in human history. Maybe it's just my play style, but I rarely ever get more than one Coal Power Plant (mostly just to fulfill the Refining eureka), and there are only two units that make use of Coal, which are naval units at that! Niter seems to be even more limited!

I wouldn't mind seeing more strategic resources, but some of the ones we have now need to be expanded a bit more. IMO Cuirassiers should probably require Niter instead of Iron, as an example.

Cuirassiers and other Heavy Cavalry were discouraged from using firearms - famously, John Churchill only issued 3 bullets to his heavy cavalry, and then only to protect their horses while they were camped, but not to be used in battle, since that meant they tended to slow down to fire instead of hitting the enemy at full gallop or charge and using the weight of horse and rider to smash him. The limiting resource on Cuirassiers was large, expensive-to-feed Horses that could carry the weight of big men wearing armor. I think Humankind showed the way in this by requiring differing amounts of Horses and other resources per unit based on the critical nature of the resource. Using the Civ VI system as an example, Cuirassiers might require 30 Horses/unit instead of 20, and in addition require 1 Horse per turn for Maintenance representing the cost of replacing injured, sick, or wounded/killed horses in battle.

Nitre (Potassium Nitrate and other Nitrates, specifically) was also used for fertilizer until the Haber Process made it possible to manufacture nitrates as needed.
Coal was first used in the Medieval Era to heat homes in cities. In fact, any city should require some kind of Heat Source as an Amenity (and get a Big Minus for not having such a source available) representing all the cooking, heating, manufacturing processes requiring heat in every Post-Neolithic City.
That would mean using to Wood, Coal, Oil, Wind, Hydro, Nuclear power sources not only for Factories, but also for Amenities to the city. In addition, Coal was required to make Industrial quantities of Iron and Steel in the Industrial Era and later, as well as to maintain units like Ironclads and (early - pre-1916) Battleships. Steam railroads also burned coal by the 1000s of tons until Oil became their required resource for operation starting in the 1930s.

There are, in fact, a lot of on-going processes that could require Coal or Oil in addition to military units: advanced Roads are no better than dirt tracks without Oil, Railroads require some kind of power to function (Coal, Oil, or Electric), as does Mass Transit in cities, all Factories, modern Deep or Open-Pit Mining Operations, and modern Agriculture. Power is, in fact, a continuous Maintenance Requirement to make any post-Industrial Era ecnomic/production system work, but inckuding it in the game could get very messy, and would have to be carefully thought out.
 
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There are, in fact, a lot of on-going processes that could require Coal or Oil in addition to military units: advanced Roads are no better than dirt tracks without Oil, Railroads require some kind of power to function (Coal, Oil, or Electric), as does Mass Transit in cities, all Factories, modern Deep or Open-Pit Mining Operations, and modern Agriculture. Power is, in fact, a continuous Maintenance Requirement to make any post-Industrial Era ecnomic/production system work, but inckuding it in the game could get very messy, and would have to be carefully thought out.
Coal indeed is needed to build railroads in the game. Unfortunately railroads in Civ 6 don't amount to much other than the most advanced form of roads, and only buildable by military engineers, so that also is never used much in the game.
 

aieeegrunt

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Coal indeed is needed to build railroads in the game. Unfortunately railroads in Civ 6 don't amount to much other than the most advanced form of roads, and only buildable by military engineers, so that also is never used much in the game.

I’ve never built them, because the micro involved is so ridiculous

Who thought this was a good idea?
 
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Coal indeed is needed to build railroads in the game. Unfortunately railroads in Civ 6 don't amount to much other than the most advanced form of roads, and only buildable by military engineers, so that also is never used much in the game.

If we want to get pedantic (What, moi?) the required Resource for Railroads should be Money in vast quantities. It was the required amounts for building railroads that really drove the growth of financial markets and exchanges in the mid-19th century that was the financial equivalent and part of the Industrial Revolution. You could legitimately say that you cannot build a railroad unless you have at least one functioning Stock Market.

As to what Unit can build a railroad, while military engineers were certainly involved in every country (West Point, the US military academy, trained its graduates extensively as military and civil engineers, so almost every major railroad in the USA was either surveyed or built under their supervision), the construction was done by specialized 'navvys' or work crews, and their expertise was in such demand that British crews were exported to build railroads all over Asia, Africa and South America.
That points to a potential specialized 'Railroad Builder' Unit, possibly a form of Military Engineer or only buildable at a ratio of one for each Military Engineer you've already built.
Then each tile of railroad would require not only Steel, but also a certain quantity of Gold/Money and a specialized Unit to construct.

The other side of those extra requirements to get Railroads would be Game Changing Results from railroads, which haven't been in the game so far.
Things like:
* All cities connected by railroad share Resources: the Food required by the population in one city can come from any City Radius in the group. Some percentage of the Production and Science Points generated by all the cities is shared among them as well, so that your raw new city on the frontier gets Production bonuses from the Factories, Workshops, Mills, or Resources in cities 30 tiles away as long as you have a working Railroad between them.
* All Amenities are now shared among all the cities: a Wonder in one city also extends most of its benefits to the other cities, because people can travel to visit and be influenced by the Wonder in a matter of days or hours, not weeks or months.
* All Population Points in all the connected cities can shift instantly from one city to the other: build a new Factory in one city, and Specialists/Workers can come from any of the cities to 'staff' it.
* Movement of any Unit between any points on a connected Railroad is Instant, requiring at most a single Movement Point to Load and/or Unload.

Add even a few of those effects, and the massive change in human activity produced IRL by the railroads would start to be reflected in t he game, and building railroads would assume the importance it should have.
 
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If we want to get pedantic (What, moi?) the required Resource for Railroads should be Money in vast quantities. It was the required amounts for building railroads that really drove the growth of financial markets and exchanges in the mid-19th century that was the financial equivalent and part of the Industrial Revolution. You could legitimately say that you cannot build a railroad unless you have at least one functioning Stock Market.
I'd be up for giving the Stock Markets in game any function other than just produce more gold. :mischief:

* Movement of any Unit between any points on a connected Railroad is Instant, requiring at most a single Movement Point to Load and/or Unload.
I thought about this, but I also thought this would be redundant considering you can do that with Aerodromes and Airports . Of course I guess you would still need instant movement over bodies of water, which is where that could come from.
And I doubt we're going to be able to build a "chunnel" in a game anytime soon. :lol:
 
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