the effect of affinities

3of5

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In all the information we have encountered today, there is one thing that strikes me as odd: we have come to known the ways that affinity has a strong, even defining influence on the military part of the game, shaping how a faction would play in a conflict situation. But we have until now not encountered one way how affinity would shape society.

I know how Civ5 sees itself as a tactical simulator looking outward rather than a nation-simulation looking inwards into the nations inner workings, but both the expansions somehow mitigated that. We also know that devs have put considerable thought into an overhauled virtue system (even though it will probably be static). It's just strange that while military needs would drive a faction to specialize into one affinity (because of the big leaps in military power only on the main affinity upgrades (secondary affinity levels don't seem to grant unit strength and additional traits), that does not seem to affect the inner workings of the faction at all.

It stands to reason that persuing an affinity as pronounced as supremacy or harmony would have a decisive effect on wealth and scientific progress, but lead to high societal stratification (not everyone would be able to afford the augments neccessary to improve his income). Granted those are highly speculative and there is no point in arguing how exactly it would affect societies, but there is no doubt that it would. A Harmony society would be fundamentally different from a Purity society on almost every level.

That could be achieved by adopting an additional spec option, like with units, on say every second affinity level (and allow secondary affinities to grant traits too), or by affinities locking out incompatible virtues from the virtue tree or the affinity points distribution even skewering virtue cost. Lets say by selecting supremacy you'd be given a rebate on some virtues affecting wealth generation, science or offensive military, but virtues that enhance production an growth would become more expensive. That would a supremacy faction not prohibit from developing a strong production base, but it would reflect that it would need a lot more effort to achieve that. This societal steering should with time become stronger than the starting factions bonuses, reflecting the gradual evolution of societies. It would also give more depth to specs persuing more than one affinity ("roleplaying" the tech tree).
 

Kolbeg

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There are some many awesome and interesting things that could be done withing the current Affinities and Virtues system. I just really hope that they will realize the potential for building interesting societies with these mechanics, and not just combat applications.

Making these features would greatly enhance replay-ability I would think. And I do not think that these social need much graphical work, its mostly just interesting picks and then the imagination does the rest.

For me building a civilization with certain characteristics is the center of the game, military and combat is just a tool for realizing that goal. I don´t want to become socialist only to be able to support more military units or a free marketeer so I can buy more units.

I know how Civ5 sees itself as a tactical simulator looking outward rather than a nation-simulation looking inwards into the nations inner workings, but both the expansions somehow mitigated that.
I think this is a good analysis of Civ5, and perhaps the best to get good sales.

I´m just hoping for a bit more emphasis on society and the difference of competing ideologies, be it politics, economics or values - not just in the difference of how combat units look and work.

I guess I need a bit more immersion with the Faction that I´m playing, a stronger role-play perhaps.
 

KrikkitTwo

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I think a lot can be done by having Affinities influence buildings and tile improvements.

So that a Supremacy Knowledge Prosperity civ going for Contact plays differently then a Harmony Knowledge Prosperity civ going for Contact.

It would als be interesting if some virtues had different effects for different affinities.

Basically we have only seen the combat part so far... the 'civilian' features will get revealed later (since they are less interesting to show/see...and also less straightforward to design)
 

Freedom Geek

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It stands to reason that persuing an affinity as pronounced as supremacy or harmony would have a decisive effect on wealth and scientific progress, but lead to high societal stratification (not everyone would be able to afford the augments neccessary to improve his income).

Or you have a little bit of socialism and have the government pay for the augmentations (potentially justified by the fact that, if they help you do your job better, it's an investment in the economy).

Granted those are highly speculative and there is no point in arguing how exactly it would affect societies, but there is no doubt that it would. A Harmony society would be fundamentally different from a Purity society on almost every level.

That could be achieved by adopting an additional spec option, like with units, on say every second affinity level (and allow secondary affinities to grant traits too), or by affinities locking out incompatible virtues from the virtue tree or the affinity points distribution even skewering virtue cost.

What do you mean by "incompatible virtues"? Unless they're basically repeating the core values of these affinities in the virtue trees (eg a "bioconservatism" virtue, a "transhumanism" virtue, a "technoprogressivism" virtue) I don't see how that would make sense. Socialism for instance would look very different under Supremacy and Purity but both would work (for examples look at the Federation from Star Trek for Purity socialism and the Titanian Commonwealth from Eclipse Phase for Supremacy socialism).

Lets say by selecting supremacy you'd be given a rebate on some virtues affecting wealth generation, science or offensive military, but virtues that enhance production an growth would become more expensive. That would a supremacy faction not prohibit from developing a strong production base, but it would reflect that it would need a lot more effort to achieve that.

That seems like a massive oversimplification. What about, say, molecular assembler technology? Supremacy would be the virtue most suited to this technology in my opinion and yet it's all about massively increasing production.

This societal steering should with time become stronger than the starting factions bonuses, reflecting the gradual evolution of societies. It would also give more depth to specs persuing more than one affinity ("roleplaying" the tech tree).


I'm not opposed to the idea of your affinities being affected by your virtues and vice-versa but I can't say I approve of this approach - it seems needlessly limiting, arbitrary and over simplistic.

I think it would be better if affinities were "flavored" by your virtues (Purity under one set of virtues is the Imperium of Man and under another they're the Federation from Star Trek) and Vice-Versa (the aforementioned Titanian Commonwealth has a socialist policy called "A body for every mind" which would seem absurd to a Purity socialist state) rather than associating particular virtues with particular affinities.
 

Kolbeg

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Basically we have only seen the combat part so far... the 'civilian' features will get revealed later (since they are less interesting to show/see...and also less straightforward to design)

I do hope that you are right. And that its just not b/c the 'civilian' features are simply not present. :sad:
 

SupremacyKing

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According to that one preview, it seems like the unit upgrades only happen at levels 1,4 and 9. So there are plenty of affinity levels left for civilian bonuses. So, there is a good chance that some of the affinity levels will give you bonuses to buildings or tile improvements.
 

KrikkitTwo

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According to that one preview, it seems like the unit upgrades only happen at levels 1,4 and 9. So there are plenty of affinity levels left for civilian bonuses. So, there is a good chance that some of the affinity levels will give you bonuses to buildings or tile improvements.

Infantry is 1,4,9
Tanks arre 1,5,9
I'm guessing its spread out
 

Arkangelus

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One preview video seemed to show the existence of what looked like supremacy tile improvements, plus there are obvious differences in purity/harmony farming. So that will have quite an obvious effect on things outwith military.
 

VictoryLass

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I do wonder where the line is that separates a Purity faction's use of robotics and a Supremacy faction's use of robotics? Would the Purity faction have some sort of prerequisite that would benefit them in another area? It seems to me there would have to be a stop in the technology tree, but I can't tell where it would be from the information I have seen.
 

KrikkitTwo

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I do wonder where the line is that separates a Purity faction's use of robotics and a Supremacy faction's use of robotics? Would the Purity faction have some sort of prerequisite that would benefit them in another area? It seems to me there would have to be a stop in the technology tree, but I can't tell where it would be from the information I have seen.

Purity would not put robots in their brains.
Or use robots instead of their brains
 

Lancor

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I do wonder where the line is that separates a Purity faction's use of robotics and a Supremacy faction's use of robotics? Would the Purity faction have some sort of prerequisite that would benefit them in another area? It seems to me there would have to be a stop in the technology tree, but I can't tell where it would be from the information I have seen.

Purity just shies away from altering their own bodies too much and perhaps AIs. But they use robots and other machines the same way as Supremacy.
 

3of5

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Supremacy also puts brains in robots... since we all know that a mind is a terrible thing to waste. [sarcasm] Really its all about brains and robots [/sarcasm]

@VictoryLass: all 3 of the affinites focus on how to deal with an alien planet on which there are threats to human existence looming behind every corner. Aliens, unbreathable air, unstable geology (lava canyons), toxic/corrosive flora (miasma)... They would probably use everything that helps them to survive and not really dwell much on ideological red lines. But ultimately they would be set on mutually exclusive ways. If you terraform the planet to make it more habitable you threaten the habitat of those who genetically altered their biochemical makeup to actually prosper with the alien flora and fauna. As a purity faction you might not like your neighbors spreading miasma all over your fields spoiling your crops and those alien lovers uprooting the treefarms you need terraform those miasma producing stripes of land just behind your borders. Supremacy might additionally to their seemingly warlike ways have other ways to inadvertently threaten the existance of those other factions (through toxic pollution, or excessive energy demand). There might come a point where the existence of the other affinitys might seriously hinder your development or even threaten your own existence. Also set far enough on a certain path you'd just have no need for some techs. If you can sustain most bodily functions through the input of synthetic carbohydrates, you would not need to improve farming, if you already terraformed all the land around your bases, why would you need to make your body more tolerant to miasma (maybe reverting other more situationally beneficial genetic mods?). While at some point it might become a question of ideology, it would surely not be at the beginning. Especcially prolonged conflict with a faction of another affinity would bring along ideological divides.

If you want so know how this historical dynamic can come to be just look at how socialist policies have been proven to be quite beneficial in europe in conjunction with a free market and democratic system, but how after almost 50 years of cold war even 25 years after its end (yes, it has been that long), it suffices to denote someone as socialist (not even communist) in the US to seriously erode his credibility and locking the US in a state of corporate driven hypercapitalism, even Adam Smith would probably vehemently oppose.
 

SupremacyKing

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Purity just shies away from altering their own bodies too much and perhaps AIs. But they use robots and other machines the same way as Supremacy.

True they will use robots and machines for some things but I also Purity as not being afraid to get their hands dirty in a war. I see Purity as like the mobile infantry in Starships troopers, willing to send in human soldiers with the big guns and duke it out up close and nasty with the enemy. Whereas I think Supremacy would be much more hands off. They would keep their soldiers much further from the front lines whenever possible and rely much more heavily on drones, AI robots etc to do the front line fighting.
 
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