[TOT] Weird bug(?) with terrain shields in Rules.txt

Discussion in 'Civ2 - Technical Support' started by Etzel, Sep 22, 2021.

  1. Etzel

    Etzel Chieftain

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2015
    Messages:
    6
    Ehy guys! I can't believe I notice this only now, after so many years of playing this game, but you have to play scenarios or messing with the rules to notice it.

    The thing is that every terrain in the 3rd position in the rules.txt file get their base shield production totally voided, it doesn't matter which value you put there in the rules.txt. It correctly show the rules value in the Civilopedia, but if you check it inside a city you see that you get no shields from there.

    Now, if you play the Original game you'll never notice it, because that spot is taken by Grassland which already gives 0 production. Even in other scenarios, like Extended or Fantasy, that spot is given to terrain with 0 basic production, so everything works as intended. It seems that spot is hardcoded to work this way.

    But on most maps in the Scifi scenario (all but Funestis) that spot is taken by terrains that should give shields: so it says in the Rules files (and confirmed by Civilopedia descriptions which talk about "getting material out of it"). This is why I think is a bug (at least for the scifi game): without those shields those terrains get very underpowered in comparison to the rest of the map and it's clearly a problem since they're intended to be a very basic and frequent terrain.

    Have you ever noticed it? Is it a known bug?
    Would it be possible to overcome and fix it or maybe patch it (I see the community here is very active and I make use of the TOTPP)?
     
  2. Knighttime

    Knighttime Warlord

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2002
    Messages:
    267
    The third terrain slot does indeed have some unique rules, but I don't consider this to be a bug since it's clearly intentional on the part of the original game designers -- original meaning vanilla, Fantastic Worlds, and MGE editions.

    The situation is that the number of shields specified for this slot in Rules.txt (whether 1, 2, or more) is only valid on about half of the tiles on the map. These are referred to as "Grassland (Shield)" in the base game civilopedia, and will be overlayed with an image appearing on the right side of Terrain1.bmp (the one below pollution). On those tiles, the expected quantity of shields will be produced just as specified for this terrain type. But on the other half of the map tiles, this terrain loses all shield production as you noticed. If you go into cheat mode and change every tile within a city's radius to Grassland (or whatever you've name that third slot) you should be able to see what I mean.

    This terrain type also doesn't use resource specials like all the other types (entries provided in that portion of the terrain specifications in Rules.txt, corresponding to the third terrain slot, won't be used).

    Scenario designers certainly do have to be careful with what terrain type and stats they assign to this slot. I would hope that the TOT designers who built the Fantasy and SciFi games understood these rules and that their design decisions take them into account! But I guess I can't guarantee that.

    TOTPP doesn't have a patch that would "fix" this, but it does provide support for more terrain slots (a total of 16 instead of 11). So theoretically it would be possible to set up a map or scenario so that it never used the third slot at all, and utilized one of the 5 new slots in its place. All of those new slots have standard shield and resource behavior.
     
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2021
  3. Etzel

    Etzel Chieftain

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2015
    Messages:
    6
    Unfortunately the SciFi game seems to be not so well designed, or at least it does look a bit rushed, because this is just the most frustrating thing between many others: a tech that doesn't provide anything nor leads to anything, terrains mislabeled or which doesn't look as they should, techs that seem to be swapped, and so on...

    I think you're on point. It does look as whoever designed this specific scenario didn't understand these hardcoded rules and didn't test the game to check it worked as intended. It's like they worked on the main editable files: rules, events and so on, but completely ignored some deeper mechanics of the game and of those files themselves. You can notice it most on silly things like the wonders not getting listed in the right order (like, in the original game, having a Modern Wonder listed as Ancient) and the secondary effect of some specific technology not taken into account.

    It's a shame, because the lore and the setting of this scenario is absolutely amazing and the way it developes and reveal itself through the game is something I've never experienced in any other scenario/campaign in any Civ game or similar TBS.

    I see now why I've never played it so much. Every once in a while I forget about all these things and try it again, but get frustrated by all these bugs and mistakes.
     
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2021

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