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Tribute is Broken

Discussion in 'Civ5 - General Discussions' started by Helmling, Jan 23, 2014.

  1. Helmling

    Helmling Philosopher King

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    One thing that I think is still broken is how the whole tribute/protection system works.

    I pledge my protection to a CS.

    Then, century after century, Japan or Babylon or whoever, mistreats and demands tribute from my CS ally.

    I take a minor diplomatic hit when I "stick up for them" with words alone, but I never, ever have to actually put money where my mouth is--much less actually fight with the civ that took tribute.

    Now, that's broken enough. This system is a cool idea, but it needs teeth. There should be consequences. What's even worse, my protection doesn't actually give my CS allies any spine. They keep giving in, even though I can wipe the floor with the country threatening them.

    Civs that demand tribute should have to back it up with force (or lose credibility with city states for future demands) and civs that offer protection should have to actually do something to keep their influence.

    Don'tcha think?
     
  2. GoStu

    GoStu King

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    Yes. I think the value of protection should simply scale with military strength, and a city-state being protected by someone with a bigger military should almost never give in. At the same time, bullying a protected city-state should force the defender to act: perhaps a forced gift of a Unit of your choosing. (Forcing into war is a bit extreme).

    It's stupid how the AI mass pledges every CS it sees. E.G:

    "Hi there, Jerusalem! I'm Ahmad al-Mansour, leader of the largely irrelevant Moroccan empire. I will protect you from any harm... from halfway around the world, using my tiny and pathetically obsolete military. You can also take comfort that should you be mistreated anyway and driven to poverty and bankruptcy, I will use the most powerful weapon in my arsenal: a good, firm denouncing to let the bully know what they did was wrong."
     
  3. Santa Maria

    Santa Maria Warlord

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    yeah the system requires more thought. to gain influence not for pledge but for actually hepling. hard to do so dont know
     
  4. TheMarshmallowBear

    TheMarshmallowBear Benelovent Chieftain of the BearKingdom

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    Not sure if that's part of Communitas but doesn't Pledging to Protect increase the thereshold to be able to actually bully?
     
  5. phillipwyllie

    phillipwyllie Wannabe Deity

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    By 30 points(I think). Which in the scale of things is poor, especially against an autocratic bully who's unlocked gunboat diplomacy.
     
  6. bcaiko

    bcaiko Emperor

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    Yeah, there have been many discussions on this topic ever since the Pledge system was introduced. It's safe to say that most folks here agree with you that the Pledges lack teeth and you're free to pledge to every City-State in the game with impudence. The devs haven't addressed this issue except to make Pledges a practically meaningless +5 influence.

    Pledges should mean more. Repeatedly bullied City-States should demand actual action from you. And your number of pledges should be limited, IMHO - perhaps by the size of your military. How can a Civ pledge to protect every city-state on the continent when it has a one-archer military?

    I'm pretty sure a pledge of protection is -10 and an ally is an extra -20.
     
  7. tide15

    tide15 Warlord

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    That's the thing. I have a coastal CS locked tight on three sides with my border. I've pledged protection I've gifted units I've rigged the elections...and I get a message from them that they just had their treasury plundered by a rival civ and then a message from said civ that HAH!! what are you going to do about it. Well I gave my CS 5000 gold to get them back on their feet and promptly went to war and annexed eight cities from the offender.
    It seems old habits die hard. Some time after the treaty the CS gives into the same civ again.
    Well the CS came real close to becoming a Puppet and seeing that I needed aluminum at that point and the offending civ had some fat mines for the taking I went to war again.
    I think it could be said Tribute needs to be fixed.
     
  8. Barghaest

    Barghaest King

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    Yeah, pledge strength should be a scaled down bonus based on the sum of your military strength and military near CS... maybe 20% so if you have 75 overall and 25 near CS you give -20 to their resistance... and if the bonus would be less than -10, you can't make a Pledge.

    Also, on the second or third time someone bullies the CS, your dialogue options should be reduced to "abandon pledge" or "declare war" much the same way repeatedly catching spies reduces your options to DoW or forgive.
     
  9. KrikkitTwo

    KrikkitTwo Immortal

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    What I would suggest.

    Pledge to Protect +15 to resting point
    and
    You must denounce any bully/tribute taker (or break the pledge for a -50 influence)

    (and any potential bully/tribute taker is warned of all civs that are pledging to protect the CS)
    Nearby Units from Pledge to protect civs could also increase the bullying difficulty (and some policy in honor could make your units better at bullying AND preventing bullying.. and possibly give you a greater tribute yield)
     
  10. Callonia

    Callonia Deity

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    Plus that isn't all. AI civs can extract tributes from city states they are at war against :D
     
  11. Beaver79

    Beaver79 Warlord

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    As long as that policy in Patronage gives +20 influence to all city state resting points; you can't make pledge to protect more than 5. The game was broken when all you had to do was take that social policy and pledge to protect everyone and then be auto friendly with every CS.

    If they removed that policy or revamped it, they could do so much more with pledges.
     
  12. GoStu

    GoStu King

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    I'd take the solution in the opposite direction: the +5 to resting point is meaningless in most situations. I'd make the following changes:

    - Pledge to protect now decays influence loss (so it's meaningless to pledge to a city-state that's meh about you, or even hostile, but valuable to protect an ally).

    - The degree of protection from tribute demands scales up with military strength. (It should not, however, become nigh impossible to demand tribute unless the defender massively out-weighs everyone else).

    - When a protected city-state is bullied, the protector gets the following options:

    1)Abandon city state, costing 30 influence and increasing decay rate of influence temporarily. Other pledges you've made become less effective at protecting other city-states. May not pledge to protect anyone else for duration of debuff.

    2) Pay back all the Gold taken.

    3) Gift a Unit to help protect city state in the future.

    4) Immediately declare war on the aggressor.

    This way, protecting a city state is valuable, but if you overcommit to it you're vulnerable to being extorted, and worst case likely losing an ally for your betrayal.
     
  13. reddishrecue

    reddishrecue Deity

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    Bullying cses is so vanilla. We all thought that bullying was fixed. How little did we know.
    Ai seems so op for some reason when it comes to victory and Dows. I attempted a diplomatic victory with Maria and I had passed the military tax proposal in the world Congress and ai still ends up with better military (I was the last guy in military demographics). Not only that but ai also ends up with better gnp and fails my diplomatic victory.
     
  14. Helmling

    Helmling Philosopher King

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    Ah, but what if even friendship came with consequences? Must denounce a bully or lose the friendship? Must declare war or lose the alliance? And maybe both have penalties with other CS since you didn't stand up for another?
     
  15. Beaver79

    Beaver79 Warlord

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    If it hurt your relations with other nations than sure. Like you get a minor backstab penalty for not protecting your pledges.

    On a larger map with 16+ CS? +20 resting point plus +10 per pledge was pretty OP. I don't think I've ever had a game where more than 3 of my CS got bullied. When it was +10 per pledge I just felt like I had to go into Patronage to get that policy.

    I really liked Gostu's suggestion of making a pledge either decay your influence less and maybe even gaining more influence over time with them.
     
  16. KrikkitTwo

    KrikkitTwo Immortal

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    It was broken because Pledge didn't COST you anything. (significant)

    If Pledging to Protect every CS forced you to denounce all the major civs, I think that would be a fair trade off
    (you are friends with ALL CS and ONLY CS)

    You would need to make sure that bullying a CS for tribute was worthwhile (as a way to beef up the Honor Policy)
     

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