I'll be looking and discussing the VCs in CivBE (and the other Civs to a lesser extent) in the thread. The lens through which I will look will be vis a vis the so-called German board games. Civ isn't just a board game, but in terms of the VCs, it can certainly cull a thing or two from the excellent designs coming out in the board game space. A lot of posters think that the Affinities for the VCs are too low. I disagree. I think they're about right. The problem with the VCs isn't that they come too fast. The problem with every VC right now, and many VCs in the Civ franchise in general, is that they're too non-interactive. In board game parlance, this is essentially similar to parallel Solitaire. It can be nice, but playing Solitaire beside each other kind of undermines the entire point of playing together. I don't think the Affinity score for each VC is too high because I do not see building each of the Planetary Wonders as end-game. These events should be early end-game or even mid-game. When a faction builds a Wonder (which would be broadcast via notification to every Civ), is when the shenanigans start. Everything prior to that is just a prelude. Here are a few ideas for how the VCs can be more interactive: 1. Each alien killed by any faction planetwide, game-long adds 1 turn to any attempt at Transcendence Victory. In MP, you can short-circuit another player's race to victory by slaughtering alien units, making it harder for them to achieve Transcendence. 2. Add Destroy Building (not Wonder) to Espionage Activity. This allows players to not only affect each other's city improvements, but also to kill Mind Stems and sabotage XenoSanctuaries. A Transcendence player on the race to the win will have great incentive to call her agents home to defend her stuff. 3. AI: Add "Please stop killing aliens" to options. 1 Favor minimum necessary to request. 4. Favors no longer purchasable. The AI must ask you for Favors. You cannot actively sell anything to curry Favors from the AI. This change is to change Favors from just another currency to a big event - the AI really, really needed you, and you came through. That's worth something special. 5. Each Earthling Settled by any Purity faction adds +100 Strength to the amount needed to win Emancipation. Earthlings won't sacrifice their "weaknesses" in the face of immediate salvation. 6. Add "Please stop Settling Earthlings" to diplomacy options. 1 Favor minimum necessary to request. Requires Emancipation Gate built. 7. Increased AI hostility from Supremacy-Affinity-AI for Settling Earthlings. 8. Earthling Settlements may be attacked and destroyed directly. Lost Settlements do not count towards the 20 Settled Earthlings necessary for victory. The thinking here, of course, is that each of the Affinity-specific VCs are essentially Builder VCs. They are sufficiently different already, but the lack of interactivity means that they all expose Civ's main weakness. Let's be honest here. We're essentially playing Progress Quest. The more layers are in between Progress Quest and us, the better Civ becomes. Science VCs in nearly all the Civs, Culture in IV, somewhat Culture in V, Economic VC in SMAC - they're all Progress Quest, fairly nakedly. That's one of the reasons why they're weak. Adding a solid layer of interactivity and conflict between the factions is a way to make that more entertaining. Right now, the odd thing is that the Builder VCs are mainly contested with Military, which is weird. You don't need to instigate war to interfere with another person's race to VC. Settlers of Catan shows this very well. 7 Wonders, Agricola, Puerto Rico - we have a lot of things to show us how interactivity and conflict can be built into a builder game without necessitating the use of the military layer (though you can always use that). Most of the things I spitballed here are meant to be simple to understand, add, and implement; the better for it to be patched in. In addition, most of these add conflict, but do not add partnership. It is, to my mind, entirely appropriate for Purity factions to aid each other to reach VC faster, even as Supremacy factions collude to prevent Exodus. Feel free to post your own ideas in the spirit of the thread. Specifically - let's not just add Affinity Requirements to pad the game. Let's add something super-entertaining!