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The Panopticon Wonder Discussion Thread

Discussion in 'Community Patch Project' started by pineappledan, May 1, 2018.

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Do you like the idea of the Panopticon being in VP?

  1. It's a great idea

    20 vote(s)
    25.3%
  2. It's fine

    9 vote(s)
    11.4%
  3. I don't care

    9 vote(s)
    11.4%
  4. I don't like it; I think the CV wonder should be something else

    29 vote(s)
    36.7%
  5. I don't like it; I think CV shouldn't even have a wonder

    12 vote(s)
    15.2%
  1. ashendashin

    ashendashin King

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    Somehow I mixed up your post with a sort of picture I made of this entire thread :sad:
    I dislike the abstract names for Freedom's version of a CV because you're the one that's knowingly applying it to the world.
    By that point your goal is to beat everyone else and the media platform itself is just that; a platform. Not even a symbol.
    Well we are going for a unique one for each ideology. Has to be somewhere along the tech tree though for the easy culture lock G went for. It's not like there's too much disparity in tech if you're doing well with policies by that point.
     
  2. Noob Fanboy

    Noob Fanboy Warlord

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    What do you guys think about the Wall Street for Freedom?
     
  3. ashendashin

    ashendashin King

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    Something to represent cultural domination in the economic world could work, yeah. It's been brought up and fits Freedom well.
     
  4. Noob Fanboy

    Noob Fanboy Warlord

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    Wall Street (Freedom), Palace of the People (Order), the Germany Project (autocracy). I like those three as CV wonders
     
    Tantro likes this.
  5. Mad Madigan

    Mad Madigan Prince

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    After reading through this whole thread (fun!) and thinking on it, I have to agree with G and others that there are pros and cons to having a CV wonder named as the "Panopticon". The biggest con being that it specifies exactly what sort of mechanics the "cultural victory" of the game would entail rather than leaving it more open-ended. So I agree that a good compromise would simply be to have the CV wonder named differently depending on your chosen Ideology.

    My suggestions:

    Freedom:
    • People are cringing at the very thought of having something like Disneyland or the Disney Corp being the theming for a CV wonder, but the reality is that corps like Disney really are close to smothering the whole world with their chosen culture. But since the name "Disney" is a no-go and having a literal theme park seems anticlimactic, how about we go with the silly utopian concept that ol' Walt dreamed up in the '60s: EPCOT? Although it's a theme park today, it was literally intended to be a showcase for Walt Disney's idea of a capitalist utopia. The name might not even be a branding issue as it is just an acronym for Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow, although this could be played with a bit. Perhaps call it PECOT instead?
    Order:
    • There have been several other suggestions for soviet/communist/socialist utopian city/building concepts that could fit here, and frankly I'm good with any of them. It would also be a nice mirror to the "capitalist utopia" that something like EPCOT would have represented.
    Autocracy:
    • I think this is where the Panopticon name should be used.
     
    ScooterDWiebels likes this.
  6. Noob Fanboy

    Noob Fanboy Warlord

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    Disney doesn't have a big influence in China - Japan culture. Meanwhile, Wall Street is the economical center of the world.
     
  7. a1nosugar

    a1nosugar Chieftain

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    I do think all of the wonders should get a different bonus to production. Otherwise just go with vague utopia project.

    The panopticon might get a %of Culture added to hammers

    Disnae world empire might benefit from incoming tourism

    Wall st might reward trade in some way.

    Other Suggestions
    Universal basic income - money amd city connections

    Marvel/dc universe - great people generation boosts production

    Vox populi - Requires hammers, some diplo, and salt from gazebos brow. Why not?
     
  8. tu_79

    tu_79 Deity

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    Linking to number of policies is a bad idea for two reasons. First, it would be auto win for Poland. Second, it doesn't address the problem of slower tech progress in easier difficulties.

    To get World Ideology enacted you don't do it yourself alone. Civs that want to win diplomatic victory will help you to enact it. You only need to switch your ideology if it does not match.
    Also, tall diplomatic is not that bad any longer.
     
  9. Tantro

    Tantro Chieftain

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    Can we please drop Disney Corp. as suggestion for freedom wonder. It is terrifying and ridicules at the same time. Also, Disney doesn't come close to having the same interconnectivity as Wall Street does as a representative of the open marked; a cornerstone of the "free world". It's perfect.
     
  10. Stalker0

    Stalker0 Baller Magnus

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    Another idea: call it the ideological union project. Again you can flavor how it works based on the ideology you have.

    My thing is this. CV right now has very generic flavor. The user gets to think about what the victory really means.

    When G put the wonder back, there was no notes about wanting to enforce flavor. It was purely a gameplay adjustment.

    And yet we are having this large debate because the new name has made many feel that s flavor is now enforced. Now you can argue if panopticon is good or bad sounding...but based on the reaction here it clears has connotations to some.

    So let’s not touch the flavor. Keep the wonder super generic, and allow people to continue as they have for a long time...flavorings their CV however they see fit
     
    pza and verybiased like this.
  11. tu_79

    tu_79 Deity

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    You know there can be only different flavours if the victory comes a while after the wonder is built. In current implementation (you build it, you won), it would not matter what the building does other than just winning.

    But if it were to be just a building that unlocked cultural victory, dependent on ideologies then yes, it could have flavours. I just prefer that the buildings are unlocked when a world congress proposal is enacted. I said World Ideology enacted, but it could be UN foundation as well.
     
  12. pineappledan

    pineappledan Deity

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    This continues to be a great conversation. Sounds like we should make a new poll for what people would want for the ideology wonders

    Here's a list of the wonders which have been (seriously) discussed. I am excluding Disneyland:

    Autocracy:
    Spoiler Germania - A scrapped building project by the Nazis to transform the political center of Berlin :

    Spoiler Panopticon - a means of coercing obedience to the state through mass surveillance :


    Order:
    Spoiler Palace of the Soviets - An abandoned Stalinist construction project, to be constructed on the rubble of a famous cathedral :

    Spoiler Social Credit System - A Chinese initiative of state mandated conformity in the populace. Score is determined on how pro-social and pro-communist a person is, and affects their ability to travel, get loans, and find work :


    Freedom:

    Spoiler Wall Street - the beating heart of American capitalism, and the world's largest financial center :

    Spoiler EPCOT - The 'City of Tomorrow', the brainchild of Walt Disney for a working city to act a blueprint for all future city planning and consumer product design :

    My vote goes to Palace of the Soviets, Germania and EPCOT, for these reasons:
    • None of the ones I picked were ever actually built. Having a real-world thing in the game might imply that one or more real-world nations has already won a CV
    • The 3 scrapped mega-projects are all at least 50 years old, so they are historical, not current. Civ is better-equipped to handle historical concepts
    • None are ideologically dangerous things. A city or a building can be a symbol for something, but is itself inert and benign. The panopticon and social credit are inherently malicious.
    • Adding Social credit, social media, mass surveillance is too political for my taste
    • Civ is not a good venue for educating people properly about such dangerous concepts, imo
      • Having people build tools of mass coercion as a victory condition feels wrong. Like you're forcing people to role-play as nazis in strangely insidious ways.
      • No one would seriously suggest a eugenics project as a world wonder, so why is this okay? I get that a lot of war and nasty stuff is implied under the hood with civ, but we've never had a "build a surveillance state" button before. It's tantamount to having a "keep the bloodline pure" victory condition, or a "kill the handicapped and homosexuals" button, so why are we allowing this crap? Why are we forcing players to role-play hideous violence on their own populace?

    Lastly, here are come points I'd like to counter w.r.t. the panopticon which I have seen here:
    Spoiler :
    "It could be a teaching moment to get people to learn more about the panopticon"

    Hopefully you all recognize how much I value Civ as a teaching tool by now, but on this point I would have to disagree. The panopticon is something civ is not designed to teach about, because it is more a philosophical concept than structure. Furthermore, it is by definition a negative, dangerous thing, and having it as a wonder mis-educates people into thinking that the panopticon is something that humanity wants/should have, not something we should be wary of and fighting against. This goes back to my argument against having Auschwitz-Birkenau as a world wonder. It's precisely the wrong context to teach people about this thing.

    "Foucault's ideas are old and he's dead now, he couldn't have predicted the internet, so the panopticon is not turning out how he imagined it."

    Within Foucault's life, security cameras became a thing. Furthermore, I don't see how technology making a dangerous idea more possible somehow makes it less dangerous. If anything, with the recent news about the NSA's activities, troll factories as a tool of manufacturing consent, and Facebook's selling out to metadata companies who gamed the recent American election, Foucault's theories are more important now than ever.

    "The Panopticon is not necessarily evil"

    Yes, it is. The panopticon is a tool of subjugation, that is its primary function. In order define a panopticon as morally grey, you would have to define coercion and enslavement as morally ambiguous concepts. No. No. No. A thousand times No.
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2018
    CppMaster, Rekk and Hinin like this.
  13. ashendashin

    ashendashin King

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    The arguments presented so far, as I see them, are not putting it in a positive light. Barely even grey. Can you deny that RL nations and corporations have been pushing information gathering on every last thing they can get away with? Media in every damn country has been built from the ground up to drive the population in certain directions, and governments haven't been shy from working with all those willing to sort loads of data. It's been defined as inevitable when something of such a scale is pushed through what's often government funded programs or at least closely tied to government. That it's so dangerous is exactly why it fits as the ultimate way to remove world powers through subversion, and no matter how you look at it, the entire purpose of a cultural victory is to remove all other powers and have the people follow your only way of life. The only identity anyone is capable of presenting is the one that allows your civilization to remove everyone else from the world stage.
     
  14. pineappledan

    pineappledan Deity

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    I don’t much care for your argument that since the world and it’s leaders are morally bankrupt, that it is okay to popularize and normalize the tools of they use to erode our basic freedoms. This goes beyond cynicism, it’s aiding and abetting totalitarianism and I want no part in it.

    Frankly, If we finish having this discussion and the panopticon is not either securely within totalitarianism and coded “evil nazi crap”, or removed entirely, then playing VP and recommending it to friends and family becomes a legit moral conundrum for me. Do I expose people I care about to media which is this cavalier with having people act out the very tools of their own subjugation?

    If we want the world to be better then we should start with imagining a world that is better.
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2018
  15. ashendashin

    ashendashin King

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    ...That is not my argument. My argument, at its base, is that the world is made up of many countries with their own interests, morals, laws, and individuals. You can remove some of this by enlightening people to a better lifestyle.
    However, believing that a simplistic utopian presentation is all there is to make the world remove its borders and power hungry dictators is stretching the games ideologies, at best.
     
  16. Gazebo

    Gazebo Lord of the Community Patch Supporter

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    It’s a game, though, not a philosophical platform.

    G
     
  17. Tantro

    Tantro Chieftain

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    Well, @ashendashin has a point. These events and developments are a reality or near-realities. Censoring them or their future implications to produce a moral safe space is not my cup of tea.

    Wake up, sheeple. :mischief:
     
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  18. ashendashin

    ashendashin King

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    Wow. Here I was thinking that the game was only a simple presentation of historical attempts at nation building which were rarely trying to achieve some sort of utopia in the first place.
     
  19. pineappledan

    pineappledan Deity

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    You've spent enough time discussing mechanics as message on this forum that I already know that you can't believe that. You've spent years of your life working on this mod, and are an educator and a father yourself. You have to have spent at least a little time thinking about the meaning and message you hope to create, and things you might try to avoid.

    I think this is something that is worth avoiding, especially if there are serviceable alternatives. At this point I have overplayed my hand, but I can assure you I am sincere when I say that any art carries meaning, whether we want it to or not. This mod absolutely is art, and it absolutely carries meaning.
    Hot damn, I can't believe you said that. Quoting it again just because I'm just so flabbergasted.

    If this is not a political/philosophical statement then why are you inserting a philosophical theory as a world wonder??? Was the panopticon added out of sheer thoughtlessness?

    What does this mechanic say? The panopticon is pure evil, something that was co-opted from a penal system as a means of eroding an entire population's human rights. And you have made it a World Wonder that Wins a Player the Game. How is that not political? How is that not pitch-black dystopianism?
    With the panopticon it ceases to be about historical things and becomes about current events. The US is struggling with the balance between privacy and safety as matters of personal freedom. In my own country, we are dealing with a government which has just recently defunded religious charities unless they profess to be pro-choice. This is why I made this discussion, because I have never seen VP take on something so controversial and political. I don't think this mod is equipped to deal with these concepts in an honest way, and so I think it would be best to steer CV wonder(s) back into pie-in-the-sky futurism, lest it inadvertently make a very political statement about current events.
    As I have said, the mechanics of civ don't allow the game to deal with this subject in a responsible way. I am not advocating for people to be ignorant, but I do fear that adding this concept into the game glorifies state oppression.
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2018
  20. civplayer33

    civplayer33 King

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    I'm one of the people who voted for "no CV wonder" so I'd like to chime in as well.

    Civ 5 is a game that resembles history and reality imperfectly in every way it tries; this is not surprising, since a more accurate portrayal of reality would push the complexity to levels impossible to achieve. Since much of the discussion here seems focused on semantics I wanted to point that out because I don't think that a discussion of morality is particularly useful in this context, especially since "immoral" actions are the bread and butter of gameplay anyway; when you decide to build a Barracks before a Granary you implicitly accept that some people might starve just so you have better soldiers; if you check the "do not grow" mark on a city you forcibly implement a two-child policy; if you invade a neighbor and annihilate his army to capture that city with all the nice resources you need, you killed and subjugated many people to serve your strategic needs; if you choose the "Lebensraum" tenet you implicitly declare the superiority of your "main race" followed by forced expulsion and basically enslavement of other peoples (this was the idea behind "Lebensraum": that Eastern Europe would become the farm lands for the Aryan master race)...I could go on and on with this. Gazebo succinctly summarized the point I'm trying to make here while I was writing this:
    Like someone else in this thread pointed out (too lazy to dig up the quote) the only victory that comes without messing with other civilizations is science victory...turtle up and build your space ship (and then prepare for war on the new planet as the other civs will be joining you shortly....Civ BE incoming ;) ). I don't see how culture victory could mean anything positive; if it is simply "having great ideas and art that will be discussed by others" then that is not victory at all (go ask the Greeks how victorious they feel these days...not trying to disparage the Greeks btw but I think it gets the point across). Culture victory has to mean "global cultural domination", which necessitates the suppression of all other (non-victorious) cultures against the wishes of billions of people.
    There is a problem with this concept, however, in that this type of "victory" realistically cannot be attained without (military) force. Hitler with his ideas of "Welthaupstadt Germania" was certainly intent on conquering the world (or at least very large parts of it) to allow for the spread of his "master race" and subjugate everyone else in order to make Berlin the capital of the world; the Soviet Union killed plenty of people and invaded plenty of countries who didn't want to accept their utopian vision of world wide socialist revolution and an important part of the West's "delivery" of "Freedom" to the world is the invasion of other countries. That these "schemes" don't really work even with military force can be perfectly well observed in the Middle East today; it is ridiculous IMO to think that any sort of "Culture Victory" is possible without military force and even with it the effect would be more akin to the already existing military domination victory (just a more thorough variant of it)....which brings me back to my original point: this is a game, not reality, and culture victory exists because we have fun when we play to attain it (or prevent it) and we need incentives to pursue tourism and culture in our civ. Personally, I would actually like it if there was no CV and instead the tourism and culture thing was simply expanded a bit to have more influence on diplomacy, espionage, trade, happiness, warfare etc. than it already has so that a strong culture and tourism simply make it easier to attain the other victory types (and harder for the weaker cultures) but this would require massive changes that are certainly beyond the scope at this point.

    So far for the "rant" part, on to the productive comment part:
    I agree that sudden, early CVs can be annoying and that sometimes one doesn't want to win by CV but is "forced to". The latter can be fixed by creating a national wonder that becomes available when the civ is influential with everyone, follows the world ideology and maybe a certain WC delegate percentage is reached; I like the idea of ideology specific wonders but I have spent too much time writing this comment already to elaborate much, especially since I also don't care much about the names ("Welthauptstadt Germania", "Palace of the Soviets" and "EPCOT" are my favourites, though). The former can be partly fixed (and maybe it already has) by adjusting tourism and having the tie-in to ideology and World Ideology. Overall I'd be fine with no wonder requirement as well, though, especially since someone as OCD as me can't just say "no" to building a wonder that would win me the game just to have another win screen; alas, there are other people who may like that kind of thing.
     

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