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[Tuning] Policies: Imperalism

Discussion in 'General Balance' started by Stalker0, Jul 23, 2016.

  1. Stalker0

    Stalker0 Baller Magnus

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    In terms of VP polices, I think the policies for the most part are very solid, a huge improvement over Vanilla. That said, I think there are still some adjustments that can be made for final balance.

    This thread will look at the Imperialism tree.

    As a whole, the tree seems to be designed for warfare, especially navy heavy play. That said, its a bit of a grab bag tree right now.

    One key note comparing this tree to Rationalism or Industry...is that there is no happiness bonus anywhere in the tree. Both of the other trees provide either direct happiness (Industry's closer) or help to manage happiness (Rationalism huge reduction in religious tension).

    Imperalism brings neither of that to the table and considering expanding warfare often needs happiness, I think this is its key weakness.

    Lets look closer:

    1) Opener: A solid opener, Ive taken it on occasion even not going heavy imperialism just to augment my naval combat.

    2) Exploration: This one is a strange policy. The capital reveal can be nice but its commonly wasted by the time you get it at this point in the game (I think that could be moved to the opener, its just a little flavor add, its never why you pick the policy).

    The Great Admiral is fine, if nothing to get a free pair of luxuries. The +1 GG movement is mostly fluff.

    The meat of this policy is the +2 movement for embarked units, which is a solid benefit if your playing a water heavy map.

    I think there are two ways to go with this policy:

    a) Leave it as is, but make it a side niche policy. Aka remove it from being a prereq to other policies. It then becomes a policy to pick up for certain playstyles, but not a core aspect of the tree.

    b) If we want to add happiness to the tree, you could add the benefit (double the happiness bonus for finding Natural Wonders). That adds a happiness component and fits the theme of "exploration".

    If you do that, you can remove the GA and the GG movement and the finding captials. It becomes a nice solid policy and doesn't need all of that fluff.

    3) Martial Law: Another grab bag policy. The reduction to unit upgrade costs is the meat of the policy; almost anyone can benefit from that.

    The production bonuses for occupied and puppets is always strange to me, especially the occupied status because its weird to reward a status you ultimately don't want. You want to put a courthouse in that city and make it yours. For puppets, maybe I could see that for you warmongers out there.

    Ultimately this policy isn't bad per say, it just feels like a prereq to get to the "good stuff" in the tree.


    4) Exploitation: Now we get to the fun of the tree! This is a great policy, it breathes new life into farms at a time when growth starts to become less important. Ultimately I think the upgrade of units in allied city states would be better for Martial Law (since that policy deals with reducing upgrade costs). The +1 f/p to farms stands on its own just fine.

    5) Military Tradition: Another decent policy. The meat is the science and culture bonus, making already good buidlings (barracks and armory especially) its great buildings. The GG and GA speed increase is nice, but more of a secondary benefit. This would actually be a fine place to provide those free GA units.

    6) Civilizing Mission: A pure warmongering tree. The free factory is certaintly nice, and the free gold helps to get the new city underway. I think instead of the free garrisons, it would be good to put a small reduction in unit maintenance instead Authority has such a policy as well, but I personally don't think its bad to have it in each tree, its more chance to get it, and of course if you get both its even better!

    7) Closer: Depending on your cities, this may actually be the strongest of the 3 closers. The +1 s/p per water tile is HUGE! It can actually generate more base science than rationalism on the right map. Very good, which is great because closing the tree often starts competing with ideologies (especially autocracy).


    So overall there are some gems in this tree but it feels like you really have to work to earn them, and the theme of the tree could use some work.

    So here is my take at an adjusted Imperalism Tree.

    Imperalism (Stalker0 V1.1).

    Edit: Including the plantation bonus on explotation, was an oversight that it was removed.

    Opener: +1 movement/sight for Navy. +5% military. All capitals are revealed.

    Martial Law: -25% to unit upgrades, and can upgrade in allied city state territory. +25% production bonus to puppets/+33% to occupied cities.

    Exploration: +2 movement to embarked units. Gain double the happiness bonus from finding Natural Wonders.

    Exploitation: (Only has Martial Law as a prereq). +1 f/p to Farms and Plantations.

    Military Tradition: (Only has Exploration as a prereq). +3 science/+1 culture to barracks, armory, military academy. Receive a free GG and GA.

    Civilizing Mission: Receive a free factory and gold when conquering a city. -15% unit maintenance.

    Closer: As is.
     
  2. phantomaxl1207

    phantomaxl1207 King

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    Exploitation also gives Yields to Plantations.

    So since you didn't change much, I take it that it reinforces just how good of a Tree Imperialism is.
     
  3. tompliss

    tompliss Warlord

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    If there is only one thing to do about this tree, I'd say that it's a simple one :
    reword the Martial Law text so that it doesn't seem to imply that uppet/opccupied city will produce more than normal cities. Write it more about "negating the puppet/occupied production malus" than giving a bonus.
     
  4. tu_79

    tu_79 Deity

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    1. The ability to reveal capitals, I think should be moved to the Statecraft tree, perhaps as a finisher. As a warmonger I am not very interested in where the capitals are, but how to reach them. And I need a better map, so I am exploring it nonetheless. But for a Statecraft player, knowing where every capital is, would allow to begin WC a little sooner, specially if he/she couldn't make contact with civs in another continent.

    2. I am quite pleased with the policy that grants free garrison maintenance, and I think it should remain as is. Reducing overall maintenance is not the same thing. Free garrison encourages to keep garrisons, which in a big empire means that you'll always have troops to cover your back and/or deal with CS barbs invasions.

    3. Increased production in occupied cities means that the courthouse gets built sooner. BTW, if your happiness is quite good, you can delay courthouses. For puppeted cities means that you can assimilate new cities faster. If, for balancing reasons, you feel like it should be stronger, I won't oppose, but I think domination is quite easy as it is now.

    4. If we remove the exploration 'reveal capitals' ability for the above reasons, it could be changed to do something to improve explorers in combat, granting more sight or more speed, or even increasing their CS. So it keeps thematic, may help to reveal the rest of the map and you'll get to use another unit in battle.

    5. Free GG and GA means little when you battle often. Even without abilities to get more GG, I use to have more than I need (unless there's an undesired clash of citadels). The extra movement is not so bad, it allows the GG to move faster from the city it is raised to the front (arriving two turns sooner makes a big difference), and it allows to keep the pace with other moving units.

    6. Again, because nearly all the map is already explored, the extra bonus on happiness for NW means little. I find that my happiness comes already from my garrisoned units and the temples, but if I needed more happines, I'd add golden age points on kill (although I believe it overlaps with some unique units). Another source of happines could be +1 happiness from worked forts and citadels, but perhaps that's too strong.
     
  5. Stalker0

    Stalker0 Baller Magnus

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    I had intended it to work retroactively, so that all natural wonder happiness was doubled That's roughly a +7 happiness on an explored map, not peanuts, and I think comparable to what you get from industry or rationalism.
     
  6. tu_79

    tu_79 Deity

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    Ok, that's certainly better. I'd ask before if that is feasible. The rest points still stand, :)
     
  7. mikes61293

    mikes61293 Warlord

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    I like the new proposed tree. I'm not 100% sold on the unit maintenance reduction of civilizing mission. It may be too powerful and doesn't really fit the military occupation theme.
     
  8. Stalker0

    Stalker0 Baller Magnus

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    Most of the feedback so far is neutral to me, I have no issues with keeping those as they currently stand. So this version is a little closer to the original.

    Imperalism (Stalker0 V1.2).

    Opener: +1 movement/sight for Navy. +5% military. All capitals are revealed.

    Martial Law: -25% to unit upgrades, and can upgrade in allied city state territory. +25% production bonus to puppets/+33% to occupied cities.

    Exploration: +2 movement to embarked units. All future and previous happiness bonus for finding natural wonders is doubled.

    Exploitation: (Only has Martial Law as a prereq). +1 f/p to Farms and Plantations.

    Military Tradition: (Only has Exploration as a prereq). +3 science/+1 culture to barracks, armory, military academy. Gain 33% bonus to Great General and Admiral generation.

    Civilizing Mission: Receive a free factory and gold when conquering a city. Garrison units have no gold maintenance.

    Closer: As is.
     
  9. Horvath Broncos

    Horvath Broncos Warlord

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    I think this is very good suggestion. I really never pick imperialism because it just doesn't compare to the other policies.
     
  10. tu_79

    tu_79 Deity

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    Yeah, that's solid. Hope it is balanced too.

    A note on GA. Usually I have more GG than I can use, but at least they can be spent in citadels.
    Right now GAs have the 2 lux mission, that is a one shot ability, it's passive ability that increases CS for naval in a 2 range, and a bulbing ability that heals every naval unit in range (that I rarely, if ever, use).
    If GAs are to become more common, I'd like a better bulbing ability and a shorter range for its passive, so players with more GAs can make a difference. A good bulbing ability that I'd use is to increase CS and range to all friendly naval units in 2 tiles for 1-3 turns. And a good passive ability with shorter range could be to let adjacent units heal (as if they were in friendly territory).
     
  11. Funak

    Funak Deity

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    First of all, I don't think Gazebo wants to change the structure of the tree (changing pre-reqs) I suggested that multiple times for the tradition tree and it got completely shot down every time.

    Second, don't take this the wrong way, but is this really necessarily? Is there actually a problem with the existing Imperialism tree (other than the capital reveal that is probably going to be just as useless here as it is in the current tree, I mean embassies exist)
     
  12. Stalker0

    Stalker0 Baller Magnus

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    To the first part, Tradition at least has a fairly common theme throughout its policies, so the funnel shape works decently well. But some trees has more separate tracks, and in those cases I think adjusting the prereqs make sense. Imperalism I think falls into this category.

    To the second party, that's why this is tuning and not rebuilding:) I think the policies are mostly fine at this point, this is more about refinement. That's why I started this series of posts, to make those last refinements for final balance.

    In a nutshell, I identified a few general issues in the tree.

    1) No happiness generator in this tree compared to its siblings.
    2) The prereqs are overly harsh. The tree tends to have 2 themes within it, but instead of letting you choose one, the other or both, you are forced to take both because of the prereqs.
    3) Exploration policy as a whole is a very strange policy, a weird grabbag of things.


    None of this issues are killer, but I think they can be adjusted.
     
  13. Funak

    Funak Deity

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    If I'm not mistaken Imperialism have the exact same policy-layout as Aesthetics(and upside down statecraft) and no one is really complaining about those layouts. Tradition is super-boring because there are absolutely no choices, it's just 2-1-3-4-5, you can choose to rush something or save something for later (options that are definitely present in the Imperialism tree (if it does look the same as Aesthetics).

    1. Don't necessarily think happiness generator is mandatory, I mean there is no happiness in Rationalism, unless you really suck at spreading your religion I guess. And the Happiness from Industry is locked in the finisher, which, in games where you actually need happiness (wide games), aren't going to unlock before ideologies anyways.

    2. I'm not sure if I understand what you mean by two themes.
    I don't really see any policies in that tree which isn't tailored toward military expansion. I mean except maybe the Farming policy (exploitation?) but who doesn't like farms?

    3. Other than the "reveal capitals" part, which I've personally asked to remove multiple times because I think it's completely pointless, I don't exactly see any weirdness in Exploration.
     
  14. tu_79

    tu_79 Deity

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    Will it be possible to move Reveal capitals effect to Statecraft finisher?
     
  15. hokath

    hokath King

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    That's an interesting idea. Good synergy with espionage.
     
  16. Funak

    Funak Deity

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    Just as pointless at that point as it is in the Imperialism opener imho.
     
  17. tu_79

    tu_79 Deity

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    Ok, a little sooner then. But not too early or diplo will become too easy.
     
  18. Stalker0

    Stalker0 Baller Magnus

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    Funny enough, I always do 2-1-3-5-4 in Tradition, and just save my GP once I have 4 to get the culture bonus for expending them. To your point, I have no issue with adjusting the prereqs a bit on Tradition as well if there is a call for it. Imperalism does have the same structure as Aesthetics, and yes I hate that structure too:)

    I actually like for a tree to have some of its core juicy stuff at level 2 (right after the opener). I think this encourages some tree cherry picking, which I think actually greatly increases the variety of gameplay. There is loads of incentive to finish a tree, but if you have just enough to consider cherry picking around, a lot more possibilities open up.

    Free Thought is basically a happiness generator, or at least an unhappiness remover. The extra science and culture basically annihilate illiteracy and boredom (and increase it for other civs....like those going imperialism), and the religious removal I find does knock out a decent amount of unhappiness, not an incredible amount, but when you add it all up its a decent amount.

    You have a water theme (greater naval movement, free GA, faster embarked unit movement, and a huge bonus to coastal cities in the closer), a military expansion theme (all the things you mentioned), and....exploitation, which is a weird part of the tree, but its so awesome I'm glad its there!
     
  19. Funak

    Funak Deity

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    4 gives you +2 culture per city (with monuments, which you probably should have at this point) and also access to another cultural specialist, I don't really see a good reason to delay that in favor of 5. But to each their own I guess.

    That's like saying Military tradition reduces illiteracy and boredom (for the yields it adds to barracks and armories) and civilizing mission reducing Crime because you can afford to garrison.

    Adding happiness and reducing unhappiness are two completely different things especially when it comes to unhappiness that you can easily eliminate without it. Same reason I wouldn't count Free Trade (in Industry) as happiness gain.



    I don't see naval military expansion as being a separate thing from other military expansion.

    I can agree that Exploitation seems a little at odds with the finisher, but unless you're playing a map with really small islands you're probably going to build farms and plantations.
     
  20. Stalker0

    Stalker0 Baller Magnus

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    If what you are saying is true, than the description in Tradition is wrong. It strongly implies the bonus on 4 is for the capital, not every city. If it is every city than Tradition is cooler than I thought.

    Your note about civilizing mission is silly, I can garrison or not to reduce happiness, the policy doesn't give me anything around that. You can make the point that military tradition does give science and culture to fight unhappiness, but I would say free thought is stronger.

    And you can argue illiteracy and boredom are fairly easy to eliminate but poverty tends to remain a strong one long in the game, free trade is a definite unhappiness reducer.
     

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