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The Final Analysis?

Discussion in 'Civ5 - General Discussions' started by Brau, Dec 26, 2010.

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  1. snaktime

    snaktime Chieftain

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    I agree with most of Sulla's points, although I don't agree with blaming 1UPT. I think a decently balanced game could have included that.

    But I think he actually fails to emphasize two additional problems with the game that are just as serious as those he mentions:

    1) The problem with global happiness is not just that it doesn't work as a game mechanism to actually limit expansion. It is that the mechanism makes no sense. Civ is not a role playing game, but even so part of the "fun" is actually feeling like you're building an empire. The decisions need to make sense. Global happiness makes no sense as a feature of empires. They should just call it "expansion penalty" because it is a pure game mechanic that corresponds in no way to what is actually happening. "my happiness is minus one, ergo build happiness building number two." Succeeding becomes a function of pure math. If I'm friends with Singapore, they will deliver food to every city in my empire! What the hell? All of these mechanisms are meaningless and the stupidity would be a problem even if there was balance.

    2) So many of the options the game provides are boring because the options have no effect on success. This is a balance problem for sure but it's bigger than that. A huge part of the fun in Civs past is picking that perfect city site. Here all terrain bonuses are pointless and thus the entire map is unfun. 90% of the bonuses and wonders are basically pointless. The game therefore gives very few meaningful choices. Sulla kind of gets at this but doesn't actually go far enough in explaining the unbelievable depth and breadth of the balance problems.

    And finally there is no reason 1UPT should explain the terribleness of the AI. Has anyone here played Dominions 3? That game was developed by like 3 people and the complexity required of its AI dwarfs what is needed in Civ IMO, and the AI in that game is eons past Civ. It's a total embarassment.
     
  2. JohnnyW

    JohnnyW Gave up on this game

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    It's impossible to debate someone who doesn't understand what words mean. Chess literally has 0 randomness involved. Wherever you got that idea from, discard it.

    Civilization 5's AI is objectively very poor relative to the average player skill and the AI of comparable video games. Your argument is that this is only "opinion" is ridiculous and I'm growing increasingly frustrated that you continue to argue an obviously incorrect view.
     
  3. aziantuntija

    aziantuntija Prince

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    I bet i know a whole lot of words in Finnish than what you do;). Also, if chess really has 0 randomness, then how is this possible:

    I will give you a free advice: Read these posts more carefully. Just for the curioucity, in exactly where did i say that civ5's bad AI is just an opinion? Quote would be great.
     
  4. Atwork

    Atwork Immortal

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    Honestly Aziantuntija, I don't think you want people reading your posts more carefully because a careful reading will only reveal more flaws in your reasoning and your lack of clarity on the meaning of the words you use to make such flawed arguments.

    In chess, if a player chooses to make one of two moves based on his conclusion that both possible moves are equally good, this does not describe a random event. Possibly the player used a random process by which he analyzed his possible moves, but even that process could not have been completely random because the player's options are limited by the predictable and determined rules of chess.

    When it comes to CIV, there are elements of randomness since the AI bases certain combat decisions on a weighing of the probability of certain outcomes. It evaluates the probable outcome given a roll of the dice. The outcome of a roll of the dice is a random event, but there is a probability of each possible outcome. It is that probability that the AI bases its decisions on.

    So, if I throw a 10-sided dice, there is a random chance that any number 1 to 10 will show. But there is a 10% chance that 5 will show. There is a 50% chance that the dice will land on a number 5 or less. And so on and so on.
     
  5. Celevin

    Celevin King

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    There is no randomness in chess. Decision making is never random. What you're looking for is "there is a chance a player will act like this or act like that", which is not actually random. This is true even if both players perceive the one having a 50% chance of performing either action.

    Chess also has nothing to do with Civ5 at all, as Civ5 1upt has random factors (combat rolls, AI preferences), non-complete information, and a lot of odd relationships between its 1upt model and the rest of the game.


    Let me clear up what the difference between "complete" and "perfect" is in game theory. Imagine a game where both players wrote what their decision was on a card, then laid the card down. They both reveal what their decision is at the same time. Every other bit of information is known, and there are no dice rolls. Since the players don't know each other's decisions, it is not a perfect information game. Since all information *except* the players' choices which they can't revoke is known, it is a complete information game. This game would be a perfect information game if player A played first, then player B played second.

    Civ5 is not a complete information game because players may move pieces or build stuff behind a fog of war without the other player realizing. If Civ5 didn't hide any information from any player (like fog of war, and city building) and had no random numbers, it would have complete information. In fact, in this case it would have complete information!


    We're trying to help you understand. If english isn't your strongest language, that's OK, but you need to accept that some words have multiple meanings depending on the context. Our context is games and probability.
     
  6. aziantuntija

    aziantuntija Prince

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    @Atwork,@ Celevin If that is what you guys think, then can you possibly give me the answer to this: If chess player is faced with a situation that he has two possible moves wich he weights to be equally good. Then based on what he makes his decision on wich move he should make?

    Listen, you don’t need to write an essay, just answer to my question because that’s all im asking for.

    Also Celevin, where did I compare chess to a civ5?


    Interesting. This raises a question: Why are you explaining this? Have i claimed something else?

    Yes I was wrong because i got mixed with words, im not afraid to admit that. Could you possibly show me some other flaw in my reasoning?
     
  7. Celevin

    Celevin King

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    Alright, I tried. I'm out.
     
  8. aziantuntija

    aziantuntija Prince

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    Im sure you will get far with this kind of attitude.

    I just asked a question in my last post, why do you want to quit to that? You took the time to post so you might as well have answered to my question.
     
  9. ButSam

    ButSam King

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    Decent, but I completely disagree that 1upt caused it all. To me civ5 is awesome despite its flaws b/c of 1upt and hex-map. I don't see how global happiness was a forced decision b/c of 1upt. I don't see how imbalanced civs was a forced decision b/c of 1upt. Etc. Vastly overstated point! Can anyone disprove me? How did 1upt force those decisions?!
     
  10. aziantuntija

    aziantuntija Prince

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    @Celevin, @Atwork You guys know Howard Lederer? He is a professional poker player who for long time (before getting into poker) played chess and wanted to become a professional chess player.

    Listen very carefully what this intelligent player thinks about chess, he says it right at the very beginning of this video. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BEwE4kEeBPM

    "Part of sort of a pure skill game like chess and its nearly pure skill game i contend there is some change in the game but not much.."
     
  11. planetfall

    planetfall Emperor

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    Wow, super looonnnnggggg thread. The analysis at the beginning was very interesting. My take on this:

    1- Jon Shafer was a great Civ3/Civ4 player, but he loved conquest more than playing as a builder. That philosophy is carried over in Civ5 reviews.

    2- 1upt limitation required more careful game design than anticipated. For the chess nuts, the worst case is at the beginning of the game when 50% of the board is covered. As the game proceeds, then movement options grow. Other great hex board games have a ton of open space, but they usually allow stacking. Without stacking, then there has to be a hard limit on the maximum number of units by any civ and in the game total.

    3- Civ5 does not seem to allow the option of two civs,i.e. human and Indian, fighting the quiet war and furiously striving to be the top scientific power.

    4- Civ3 and Civ4 are long long games and doubling the play time in Civ5 decreases fun factor.

    Agree with the initial analysis: even with full abillity to change the simple values by xml editing, without becoming a programmer, there's no light at the end of the tunnel. The game play won't be fixed by a patch; however it might be by a re-written and re-scoped civ6.
     
  12. DLL

    DLL Chieftain

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    It seems I'm not alone in this regard. ;)

    I could not agree more.

    I felt the same excitement for Civ 5 when it came out, and then found myself wondering why at first it wasn't holding my interest. I think a lot of new and interesting ideas and elements were introduced, but overall the game still felt unfinished.

    I loved - absolutely loved - that my elite units with a 99.9% chance of victory (in Civ 4) would not be one-shot killed from fluke losses that came up much more often than I ever would have imagined. I liked the way some of the art looked, at least the way farms blended into each other. I still like what they were trying with the change in roads, though I could have gone with Sulla's suggestion, too. I liked the addition of policies, though I still wondered why they couldn't have kept the flexible civics feature from Civ 4 as well at least in some small form. I liked the addition of city states, and I liked a lot of the ideas they were trying to add. I was so happy and pumped when I got my hands on Civ 5, I thought I'd be playing it constantly.

    I like the idea of the tactical elements that they were adding to the game. I wanted it. It should only ever be one of many elements to a Civ game, but just like I want better AI, better diplomacy, and better many other things, why not try to make combat more fun?

    I was stunned when I learned right away that they wanted to add the tactical elements to the main map, though. You mentioned the Total War series. Good choice and an excellent example... In my post I mentioned Master of Orion 2; a very old game that was turn based both at the strategic and tactical levels. Despite being such an old game when I came across it way back, my wife and I played it a lot. Too bad about Master Orion 3 (a huge let down with few comparable flops that I can think of). My point of agreement is that there have been games that have successfully implemented such a system, both very new and very old, and that's what I wish they would have done.

    I guess they had a reason for their choice to have the tactical element on the main map—perhaps to do everything in one place? Still...

    Despite the traffic jams, despite the scale being way off, despite me wishing that they had gone with a 2-level strategic/tactical design choice, I've still enjoyed the combat some in the early game and would probably still play it if that were the only problem.

    Sadly it's not... The state of diplomacy, the AI in general, and a combination of various things that amount to a big yet vague "something missing" leaves me disinterested for now.

    I'm likewise a fan of the series all the way back to Civ 1. I like some of the things they attempted but they've lost my interest with this one. I'll bitterly keep an open mind about new patches and expansions, I suppose... I'll be much more hesitant to spend my money, much less pre-order like I did. I also feel tired of trying to tell people that the game I wanted to like so much has "potential".
     
  13. Atwork

    Atwork Immortal

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    Aziantuntija, no one is trying to be mean. I think we're being really patient. It may be an issue of language barrier, but I simply don't think you're gonna get the explanation you need by continuing this form of engagement.

    Suffice it to say that you should drop this subject. Don't be offended, but just let it go. I suggest looking to a study of basic statistics, in your native language, to gain clarity and to obtain the answers you seek.


    Me too. This stale discussion is hijacking the thread.
     
  14. Crimso

    Crimso ...aaaaaagh!

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    I can point to a few things:
    1. The tile yields are really low and there are penalties for everything, which makes for very few exciting decisions or moments. Every moment that should be great is tempered in some way.
    2. There is a serious lack of immersion.
    3. It's the fifth game is the series. After doing this for twenty years maybe we've just had enough.

    To the guy who's arguing about chess: You win!
     
  15. Bezhukov

    Bezhukov Deity

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    The problems identified by Sullla, and further elucidated throughout this thread, bear a remarkable resemblance to some of the past struggles of the Magic: The Gathering card game as chronicled by that game's lead designer and insightful game theorist, Mark Rosewater. Magic really turned the corner a couple years back and is now knocking it out of the park with both their established fan base and new gamers.

    If Firaxis is looking for someone to cure what ails it, Rosewater (and a designer there named Mark Globus) are your men.
     
  16. JohnnyW

    JohnnyW Gave up on this game

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    He "contends" there is "chance" in the game. He doesn't expand on this, so this quote is a red herring. Chance can mean something other than randomness, and I assume he means outside factors such as fatigue play a role in chess, not that chess is random.

    edit: he even says he believes that computers will eventually solve chess. How can you solve something that is random??

    And let me do you a big favor:

    Now examine closely what random means. Now tell me what is random about chess. You cannot, but I'm sure you will try; or perhaps you will claim that it's just your "opinion" that there is randomness in chess and that we cannot disprove your "opinion." Or perhaps you will come up with another excuse as to why you cannot prove your position, or deflect from why you have been incorrect, as you've done numerous times in this thread already.

    I will make it even simpler for you:
    Prove these two assertions you've put forth:

    1: Civilization tactical AI is not objectively incompetent.
    2: There is randomness in chess.
     
  17. Horizons

    Horizons Needing fed again!

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  18. Morgrad

    Morgrad Attack Rodent

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    I guess my biggest problem with CiV is that it's boring.

    In C-IV, winning or losing, I'm one-more-turning myself to death. I'd actually get bored as soon as I knew I was going to win and would quit, but would re-play immediately to have more fun. Getting to the win/lose point was great fun!

    Ci-V is just... dull. The AI is stupid, the diplomacy is baffling to the point of absurdity, the combat is pointless, and the build-times of anything relevant is painfully long. I went from Epic C-IV to wondering why crap takes so long on Standard Ci-V. I feel that my decisions (if they're anything other than "build units and attack") are meaningless.

    I can forgive nearly any number of flaws in a game, but being boring is not one of them. Ci-V is a yawn-fest. I'm going back to C-IV, and will be giddy when I first boot it up.

    Too bad, really. I'd been looking forward to it for months -- but I got it as a Christmas present, so I guess I got what I paid for. :D
     
  19. JLoZeppeli

    JLoZeppeli Prince

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    I can't understand why your are going on with this crusade on chess. You are wrong, as pratically every one told you on the board, but you continue with your statement out of contest (and i speak as a regional chess winner in my country)... I'm more sure now of the type of audience Firaxis hits with this game....
     
  20. aziantuntija

    aziantuntija Prince

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    @JohnnyW,@Atwork,@Celevin,@JLoZeppeli This chess thing wasnt really my point at the beginning so that really doesnt have anything (or at least very little) to do with civ5, but it just expanded and came the burning point of things somehow, perhaps because there are some people who just refuse to look at things from different perspective.

    Found this from quickly searching the web:

    “If chess isn't random, then neither are dice. After all, the dice roll and land according to rather straightforward laws of physics. If you don't know the number that results, then in your perception only there is chance involved. Chess is the same way. Unless you know all the possible results of all possible moves, there is chance involved.”

    Also you you guys might want to read this:

    http://www.wizards.com/magic/magazine/article.aspx?x=mtg/daily/mm/37&page=2

    You can search more from the internet if you please, type something like “Randomness in chess”.

    If you guys want to continue just blindly repeat that there is zero randomness in chess then go to some other site to do that.

    I rest my case.
     
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