What can Firaxis learn?

Discussion in 'Civ6 - General Discussions' started by ZimZum514, Sep 14, 2021 at 10:03 AM.

  1. ZimZum514

    ZimZum514 Chieftain

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2017
    Messages:
    38
    Now that Civ VI is at the end of life, attention turns to Civ VII. The entries have all been financial successes and Firaxis seems to be doing well, so I have no doubt there will be a Civ VII at some point in the future. The question is, what will they learn? Not only from the success and failure of features in past Civilization entries, but also games like Humankind, Old World, Crusader Kings, etc. What do you think is a must-have addition or improvement? For me, I would like to see more dynamic and interesting diplomacy. I want alliances to mean more. I want to know that even if I am leading toward a victory, the rest of the field could gang up and try to stop me. Obviously, better battle AI is a major plus as well.
     
  2. Pistol90

    Pistol90 Prince

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2017
    Messages:
    308
    Gender:
    Male
    City spreading and districts is nice mechanic, but it looks ugly and feels somehow unrealistic ... it needs to change boot as gameplay mechanic and visually (just improve it, not remove).

    Combat needs to evolve to something similar to Humankind.

    Religion/Religious victory needs total overhaul.

    Economy needs to change in order to have impact on other empires not just your own.
     
  3. SaboteurINT

    SaboteurINT Chieftain

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2018
    Messages:
    37
    Gender:
    Male
    They shall learn to hire Quality assurance Specialists.
     
  4. Dotsworthy

    Dotsworthy Warlord

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2019
    Messages:
    115
    Gender:
    Male
    I think from a graphics standpoint, they will probably move towards a more realistic style similar to Humankind, as the reception of the visual style of VI is pretty divided.

    Given the NFP and the surveying of fans regarding DLC, I'm thinking they will try a different form of dlc for the next iteration perhaps moving away from expansion packs. The NFP felt a little bit like a series of crusader kings style dlc.

    Diplomacy was a massive miss for me in this game, and agendas were a failure. I want to see AI be a little more active like V, and alliances harder to earn and keep over the course of a game.

    The use of the map for districts and wonders were a great addition though and it should be pushed further, maybe even housing needing to be placed on a map as opposed to tile improvements etc.
     
  5. Vandlys

    Vandlys King

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2017
    Messages:
    632
    Location:
    New Atlantis
    Stick to what you promise. If you promise a working world builder before launch, make sure it's there before the end of the game's life cycle =.=

    Also, release files so modders can work on your came. I really think Civ V has a longer lifespan than VI because of the mods, even though I have put more hours in VI in total.

    And something I barely hear anyone speak about, Civ VI always felt a bit cluttered to me because of dimensions. Units, wonders, and districts are huge in comparison to the rest, and with the improvements from R&F and GS the map looks like a circus at the end of the game. Humankind is much easier on the eyes in that regard. Why not make the pyramids smaller, and add more fluff around it? Same goes for all districts in my opinion and other improvements in my opinion.

    If I had the time to learn, or the skills at hand, and it were possible in the mod scene, I would start making the entire game to scale. : P
     
  6. Boris Gudenuf

    Boris Gudenuf Deity

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2012
    Messages:
    4,043
    Location:
    north of Steilacoom, WA
    The biggest single thing has nothing to do with what they put in any game.

    It is simply: Communicate With Your Fan Base.

    Because thousands of heads are better than a dozen heads when it comes to finding flaws, advantages, 'must-haves' and What Were You Thinking? elements in your game design.
     
  7. aieeegrunt

    aieeegrunt King

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2021
    Messages:
    693
    Gender:
    Male
    Infortunatly what they probably learned is they can shovel out a bug ridden mess with broken mechanics and make bank
     
  8. Victoria

    Victoria Regina Supporter

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2011
    Messages:
    11,721
    30 years of doing this. I think they have the knowledge if anyone does.
    A lot of decisions are along profit margins despite what people may hope.
    Profit margins are based on wide appeal
    I am sure as a fan base we will be listened to a bit but interaction?
     
    nzcamel and Zegangani like this.
  9. EpicWestern

    EpicWestern Warlord

    Joined:
    May 6, 2015
    Messages:
    258
    Might make a longer post at some point since I've put in a gazillion hours of civ6 and have found a lot of improvement possibilities, but for now, one thing I feel that would make Civ (and pretty much any 4x game) a lot better would be to have some sort of campaign or at least challenge system that lasts from game to game. For example, you might have a "variety challenge" where you have to get each victory condition once over the course of five games with a different civ. You could also have the game reward points based on total turns taken (effectively giving you a speedrunning system), but where your winrate also matters so you can't just reroll bad starts (it would count as a loss).
     
  10. Zaarin

    Zaarin Diplomatic Attaché to Londo Mollari

    Joined:
    May 14, 2016
    Messages:
    9,427
    Location:
    Babylon 5
    ...Humankind's style isn't realistic. This confirms my suspicion that chiefly what people dislike about Civ6 is the color palette, not the style. Personally I don't think Civ7 will attempt a realistic style. Civ5 was ugly as sin, and realism isn't "in" anymore (which I think is a good thing; realism is the absolute laziest style choice possible). I think Civ7 will try a different style, and I also think it will have a toned down (though hopefully still vibrant) color palette. I personally think it will go for a painterly look as that's quite chic at the moment (on the indie front, see Draugen; on the AAA front, see AoE4).

    If you mean story events, sure, but 4X games are really about emergent storytelling, not a traditional narrative structure.
     
  11. kaspergm

    kaspergm Deity

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2012
    Messages:
    5,256
    First off, without wanting to trash Humankind, I have to say that playing Humankind has shown me how great a game Civ6 is, for all its flaws. So what Civ should try to do is draw inspiration from both itself and Humankind and learn from both games' mistakes.

    My personal pointers would be:
    • Humankind introduced the idea of changing cultures over time. While I don't think the radical shifts (Khmer turns into Dutch turns into Brazilians turns into Soviet) makes sense in civ, I like the idea that you can pick your affinity for each era and tweak the way your civilizations evolves between different playthroughs of the same civ. Can something similar be incorporated in Civ (i.e. picking different branches within a "culture set", for instance English, Celts, Scots, Americans, Canadians form one group? That's just a loose thought.)?
    • Districts are great, but district sprawling based on map features made cities look incoherent. Follow Humankind path of making (urban) districts need to spread from city center.
    • District adjacencies and flat yields played far too big a role in Civ6 compared to specialist yields.
    • Talking about yields, I would personally like a rework about how map yields work in Civ 6. I think unimproved lands should give very low yields, and these yields should be replaced when an improvement is placed. So a mind should give the same yield (say: 3 production at start) no matter whether it's placed on a grassland hill, a plains hill, or a desert hill. Likewise a farm should yield food - and only food - so placing a farm should overwrite any production value from the original terrain. Certain features like fresh water and bonus resources could add on top of these base yields, as can adjacencies (carpets of farms - yay!) and tech development.
    • There is room for rethinking how city placement interferes with map. Humankind imo. didn't get it perfectly right with map regions, but the idea that a major (urban) city can link other (rural) regions to it is worth exploring. The City Lights mod project tried to do this to a certain extent within what frame Civ6 system allowed modding to work. A hybrid between Humankind linking-system and City Lights city-specialization system would be interesting.
    • More ways to claim territories than just by founding cities: Again, I don't think Humankind system is perfect, but the idea that you can claim land by placing an outpost - or could be constructing a fort in Civ terms - both seems historically accurate (afaik.) and like something that could open up for interesting gameplay.
    • Which also links to: More uses for culture. Civ6 tried with a culture tree similar to the tech tree, and I'm not sure that was the best solution. Whether one keeps it or not, the fact that you need to boost your culture to spread your civilization seems good and worth exploring.
    • Which also links to: Is the wonder race system ready to be put to rest? I'm not sure myself. I have long thought about how it would be if wonders were something you "bought" instead of raced for, and Humankind did basically that, and I'm not sure it makes the game more fun. But maybe some other ideas could be fueled into this area? Certainly, shy away from nonsense like "Great lighthouse needs to be placed adjacent to a lighthouse".
    • Eurekas and inspirations were an interesting idea, but feels very static and turns into a fixed set of more or less artificial chores you always try to do to boost your progress. Maybe something more dynamic and random, like each time you do certain things related to science/culture/gold/production/combat/religion it has a chance to boost your progress towards next tech related to this area. Also learning from neighbors should be more significant.
    • Policy cards and governments: I really didn't like this system at all. It feels very board-gamey in the bad way (artificial), it's tedious, it can be abused, and it's poorly balanced on top - I seem to used the same dozen of cards in all games. I liked the civ5 system much (much) better, and a fleshed out version of that where you choose a subset of policies from a broader pool (like it was with ideologies) would be fantastic.
    • Combat system: Can we work out something better than just 1UPT? After two games sticking to this, maybe it's time to try to shake the bottle. I know Humankind system is not universally popular, but maybe there are other options?
    • Please let us decide where roads go. Having roads tied so intimately to traders you could not choose path for is really annoying.
    • I like the core of the religion system (adding beliefs, etc.), but it needed some tuning already after Civ5: We need the concept of declaring a state religion added, and we need options to reform (not in the civ5 sense, but in the sense of actually making an alternative and competing version of) or even become leader of another civ's religion if you don't found one yourself.
    • Try to keep the fantasy stuff to a minimum. If it was apostles fighting with lightning that opened that door, then maybe the religious system was not the best anyway. And yes, I remember people shouting for a religious victory back in the days of Civ5.
    • And in extension of the above: Maybe the idea of separate "victory conditions" needs a re-work? I like Humankind's approach of giving a score based in different aspects of the game each era.
    • Civ6 never managed to make post-industrial era interesting. Corporations sort of was a nice try without really achieving the goal, which ties into:
    • The modular approach may have been worth trying but was mostly a failure. I'm not saying there *can't* be elements of the game that can be toggled on/off, but in terms of core game features, in order to be a success, the need to be fully fleshed out and integrated in the game which seem incompatible with the modular approach.
    • Make the game moddable, and release the code so modders can tweak it. You can't make one game that pleases all players, but with sufficient modding freedom, everybody can get a chance to play the game the way the want.
    And then, just to mention some things that Civ6 did really well:
    • The unique Great Persons were the best of the series.
    • The unique City States were the best of the series (but please make us say "no thanx" to a quest we don't like to get a new one next era).
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2021 at 3:41 PM
  12. Zaarin

    Zaarin Diplomatic Attaché to Londo Mollari

    Joined:
    May 14, 2016
    Messages:
    9,427
    Location:
    Babylon 5
    I think developing new abilities in an RPG-style "talent tree" could be interesting, but I don't like the idea of changing cultures in the Civ model (even though I actually really like it in HK, arbitrary though it is). There are just too many civs whose only logical progressions are completely dissonant and were the result of conquest. E.g., do Native Americans become the United States or Aztecs become Mexico? Ew. Does Sumer become Babylon become Arabs become Iraq? Again, ew. Few civs have the kind of millennia-spanning development options open to, say, Persia and China (and even then, Persia was dominated by Turks for most of the Middle Ages, and China has its own conquest dynasties like the Jin, Yuan, and Qing). Civ's everlasting civilizations may be one kind of fiction--but that's because real civilizations don't last 6,000 years--but it's a more palatable fiction than assuming your alternate history must follow real history, e.g., Mesoamerica inevitably being conquered by Spain and Mesopotamia inevitably being conquered by Arabia (and on which note I hate the hints of this already in Civ6 such as modern Aztec civilians having Spanish names or modern Sumerian civilians having Arab names).

    tl;dr: Yes to RPG-style talent trees, no to progressing cultures in Civ.

    This is one option. The other is to make the devs' intention that districts are smaller urban centers more visually obvious (and for heaven's sake make them look civ-appropriate: no more Greek amphitheaters in my Cree city, please!).

    Yes!

    Again, yes. This goes back to the thing I harp on: Civ6's systems do not meaningfully interact with each other; Civ7 needs to address that shortcoming.

    I'll be honest: as frustrating as it can be sometimes, I like Civ's wonder race better than HK's wonder purchasing.

    I love the policy cards, but I think the system needs an overhaul to be more interesting and varied and to make different governments feel more meaningfully different. (I will say the NFP patch that revised governments did a good job of making different governments more appealing in different situations; I've found myself picking different governments since that patch than my usual Classical Republic > Merchant Republic > Democracy. But Civ7 needs to do way more in terms of government diversity.)

    I have mixed feelings on this. I appreciate not having to micromanage roads, which was often tedious in Civ5, and I even more appreciate that Civ6 makes international roads a thing. However, the automatic pathing system can make stupid choices.

    100% this. The more modular the game, the less integrated the features. That's a serious problem.
     
    Krajzen and 8housesofelixir like this.
  13. kaspergm

    kaspergm Deity

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2012
    Messages:
    5,256
    Yeah, I actually agree with your objections, and there's no doubt that if they want to go down this way, it's gonna be a huge work to come up with a system that's meaningful for all civs.

    What I really don't want to see happen is something similar to the Golden/Normal/Dark age dedications of Civ6, where you have the choice between a few generic options. Well that in itself would not be so bad if perhaps there were a few more to select from, but Civ6's era system ended up being a huge fail because: a) Monumentality is perversely good to an extend that it literally defines the entire game, and b) you can chain several Monumentality dedications in the same game, which is just stupid. Aside from the obvious rebalancing of Monumentality - which is critically overdue - it would be a huge improvement on the Civ6 system if you could only pick each dedication once in a game. Then at least you'd have to think twice if you get an early Golden Age if it would actually be worth it *not* to take Monumentality (yet) in the hope that you get a Golden Age a bit later where your faith economy might be more strong.
     
    Zaarin likes this.
  14. Boris Gudenuf

    Boris Gudenuf Deity

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2012
    Messages:
    4,043
    Location:
    north of Steilacoom, WA
    The current Dark/Golden Age system needs a serious and thorough rework. I think they tried to make it too accessible to the casual player, so that GoldenAges are just too common - you can, in fact, stay in one for several thousand years without stretching, which makes the term meaningless. Golden Ages should be really, really rare - but 'normal' Ages should not be very bad at all, and Dark Ages, while historically they were accompanied by the breakdown of central authority, demise of long-distance trade, and general contraction of growth by most metrics did NOT mean the destruction of a Civilization other than the political control part of it. That means 'Rise and Fall' could be built into the game without making the average player despair and give up. Yes, your Han or Roman Empire has collapsed into individual City States (or their in-game equivalent) but the majority of them still follow your Culture/Religion/(insert Game Mechanic here) and you can rebuild into a Tang/Song Dynasty China, a Holy Roman Empire, or Something Entirely New and Different, within an Age, while still developing Technology and other advances with almost no pause at all.

    Which brings up the Era/Uniques progression. I think the Civ version of 'changing cultures' has to be changing the Unique attributes of the Culture while keeping the expensive Leaders and (most of) the unique Civilization-specific graphics. And the 'new' Unique attributes you can adopt should be of two types: Civ-specific as much as possible, so that your Civ can grow progressively more like its historical self if you desire, but also more random or generic Attributes that your Civ might adopt because of the in-game situation which it confronts. To strait-jacket every Civ into its historical attributes when the game map, opponents and in-game actions will virtually never give the historical requirements for them is both boring and Fantasy.
    On the other hand, an England in a semi-tropical wetland environment might well develop their own version of Barays, and a Khmer Civ located on an island surrounded by trading partners should have the option of becoming a major Naval Power - but with, say, generic Naval Trade Uniques, not England's specific ones - that in a given game 'England' might never have cause to develop.
     
  15. Xur

    Xur Prince

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2016
    Messages:
    448
    30% new, 30% civ4, 10% civ5, 10% civ3, 10% hoi4 and 10% ck3.

    AI > Gameplay > Immersion > Singleplayer > >>>>>>>>>>Multiplayer
     
    Time Tested likes this.
  16. Ornen

    Ornen Warlord

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2006
    Messages:
    270
    My guess is that for launch Civ 7, they trim back some systems, including some of: stability, golden/dark ages, weather phenomena, Civ 6's (imo not very good) diplomacy systems, etc.

    I also think the separate science/culture trees feels like a one-off kinda deal, though I think it's more likely than not they will keep some version of the core idea that tech progression isn't strictly tied to science beakers (eureka system does the same thing). My ideal here would be something like a unified 'advancement' tree with advances that can be powered by different currencies, which could come from science and culture yields, but could also come from other fronts like battles and developing your cities. An advance like rocketry could be unlocked via beakers and/or battles; an advance like civil service could be unlocked via culture and/or developing your cities.

    But the most meaningful changes will come from the new game's design philosophy. Civ 5's biggest change was switching combat from thick stacks of units to more involved, strategic (and also micro-intensive) battles; Civ 6's biggest change was to apply that level of micro to city design through the districts system. This also pushed the game in a more micro-direction, in service of their design philosophy of 'make Civ more like a board game'

    Personally, I would love to see a little shift back into the macro direction. I can take it or leave it with districts (counting tiles to maximize the AOE of industrial districts is not my idea of grand strategy), as long as they fix diplomacy. Even after multiple attempts, the version they came up with in GS is still lacking in alliances that work as alliances, instead letting them serve to increase the point yield of the game's myriad currencies. Where in real life you have alliance structures (like the Grand Entente or the Axis) that naturally lock themselves into world wars, there's no functional equivalent in Civ 6, which is why the endgame is a lot of boring counting up yields and waiting for it to be over (compared to the actual 20th century, which was tumultuous to say the least)

    Oh, that's one more thing -- please simplify the game's currencies. Even as someone who can win a culture victory on Deity, I understand maybe 50% of the math behind culture wins. Culture, domestic, and foreign tourism are superfluous, just pick one and stick with it. Turn 'amenities' back into the more immediately sensible 'happiness', forget about diplomatic points and tile appeal for a minute, and bring our focus back to core yields like food, production, money, science, and culture. So much of the complexity in Civ 6 trends towards micromanagement and mechanically 'solvable' puzzles like museum theming () instead of more interesting dynamics like international alliances and wars.
     
  17. Time Tested

    Time Tested Warlord

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2020
    Messages:
    115
    I played Civ 4 recently for the first time in a while and I believe this was the case, at least with some improvements. Felt like much more of a trade-off overall when deciding how to improve your tiles. I think trade-offs make for more interesting gameplay in general.

    I generally agree, and there could be room for variety too. Immersion-wise, it's kind of cool that traders have a mind of their own, but would be nice if you could "bribe" them to take a specific route.

    We also really needed a "build railroad to" function for railroads.

    I think the most annoying thing about religious victory is that it's not possible for everyone to get it. It would be better if you could somehow become the leader of an existing religion (e.g. by spreading it more than the founder). I think there also needs to be more incentive to spread religion even if you are not going for a religious victory.

    The quests themselves are pretty dumb. Why does a religious city state want me to build an Ironclad, or "trigger a Eureka"? It totally breaks immersion.
     
    Zaarin likes this.
  18. Aristos

    Aristos Lightseeker

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2001
    Messages:
    3,842
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Deep inside...
    And who taught them?

    That is where I become a little pessimistic for the future of the franchise, because if the audience does not change... well...
     
    glider1 and aieeegrunt like this.
  19. Hans Lemurson

    Hans Lemurson Prince

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2006
    Messages:
    473
    Location:
    Silicon Valley
    There are two very different questions here:
    • What do we think Firaxis should learn?
    • What do we think Firaxis will learn?
    I think that Civ7 will take the same sorts of lessons from Civ6, that 6 did from 5: It's fun to add new features onto an old system without rethinking broken mechanics.
     
    uhu, Kjimmet, aieeegrunt and 2 others like this.
  20. HorseHead

    HorseHead Guest

    Unfortunately I very much agree.:wallbash:
     
    Hellenism Salesman likes this.

Share This Page