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What CIV could learn from SETTLERS OF CATAN and VICTORY POINTS

Discussion in 'Civ - Ideas & Suggestions' started by El Caballerion, Sep 19, 2013.

  1. El Caballerion

    El Caballerion King

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    Ok.

    Is it safe to say that most people here have played the board game (also available on iPhone) SETTLERS OF CATAN? It's a game about colonizing a small hexagonal island and harvesting its resources. Sounds dull, but is actually the most amazing thing ever...

    It just made me think about something... I have always found early/mid game CIV to be absolutely engrossing, but I always play it as a sandbox with no concrete goal in mind. I'm content to build and grow my empire in whatever fun ways I can, but always feel rushed by the end and its need to capitalize on ONE victory condition.

    Catan is a great game because all the player needs is to have 10 victory points, which range from several different conditions. I have played games where player A appears to win, by having 9 visible victory points on the board, only to have player B (with only 6 visible points) totally whoop ass by unleashing strategies in his turn giving him 4 points.

    Civ doesn't have this, but it should. IMHO, a CIV should be considered a winner for several reasons, and these reasons could appear as possibilities as the game goes on. For instance, CIV can start with absolutely no victory condition in mind, but these victory conditions appear as the game develops (perhaps pulled from over 100 different conditions). Then, the player must accumulate victory points, allowing them to let the game tailor their victory condition.

    SOME IDEAS (each worth one victory point and randomly appear as conditions as the game progresses):

    • RELIGIOUS CONQUEST: Spread your religion to all cities in Continent A. Victory Point must be regained if a single city gets re-converted
    • LIBERATOR: Liberate 2 dead civs. Victory Point must be regained if single city gets re-taken over
    • DEVASTATOR: Raze 10 cities. Victory Point is forever lost if one of your cities is ever razed.
    • DIPLOMAT: Have 5 of your resolutions be passed in the WC.
    • ONE-WORLD ORDER: Destroy all followers of (either) FREEDOM/ORDER/AUTOCRACY.
    • WONDERFUL: Have a single city with 10 wonders.
    • UN PEACEKEEPERS: Give at least 20 units to warring city states.

    Again, these are just simplistic examples, but what I think is key is that the player wont know which conditions become available until the game unfolds. Ideally, there would be above 100 different conditions, and these would be expanded every time there's a new DLC. It would help to make the game more organic and less about playing in a specific style from turn 1.

    Thoughts?
     
  2. Civmike

    Civmike Chieftain

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    In a way, civ is already a big Longest Road/Largest Army competition, except instead of getting a point you just win. In the ideal game of civ, one player completes one of the victory conditions just as another is about to, or only after years of beating back attempts by the others. Doesn't often work out that way for me, but I've had some pretty lopsided and awful games of Catan too.

    As for your specific suggestion, it feels a little arbitrary to randomly throw in point quests as the game progresses. I do like the idea of rewarding specific in-game goals, but I want some control, and don't the steam achievements already do this?
     
  3. bison21

    bison21 Warlord

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    I would actually argue that the Settlers of Catan does not nearly have the breadth of civ because of the victory points system. I have also played the card game version of it for several years; but it just evolves into min-maxing via very simple strategies, and in my view the biggest weakness are the dice: the same reason one should always pick Diplomacy over Risk.

    The 9 points-on turn-then lose isn't as exiting as it sounds. Many of these points are attributed in the same fashion the Scramble-for-Africa scenario is based on. The point wanders to whoever fulfills the condition by the highest points (economic might, military might, roads etc).
     
  4. TheBlackHole

    TheBlackHole Chieftain

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    The game already has "victory points" -- just disable every victory condition except Time. Your score is made up of many components -- population, land, technology, social policies, wonders, and a few others. Those factors pretty broadly encompass the "greatness of your civilization" and makes no judgments on how you attained those things. If you want that feeling of scoring points however you choose to get them, then just do a Time victory and aim to be #1 when the end of time hits. (Or if you want it more Catan-like, just setup your own personal victory condition of "first to ____ points" wins.)
     
  5. Uberfrog

    Uberfrog Deity

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    The OP's ideas seem to me an interesting new spin on a game of civ. While I don't think a Civilization game will go for that type of rule, I think that (if it's possible) the Catan-like victory point system would make an excellent mod.
     
  6. Sprenk

    Sprenk Prince

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    Maybe the reverse is true? Maybe Catan can be improved by making it more like CiV? I for one would love to be able to improve the Catan desert hex with Petra. . . . :mischief:
     
  7. headcase

    headcase Limit 1 Facepalm Per Turn

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    As an alternative to this idea, I'd find it interesting to award extra diplomats (and take them away) instead of victory points for those things, and then make diplo victory require more delegates. This would make diplo more of an "all-around" victory, requiring to acquisition of "victory points", completing quests for CSs, and of course good finances, also for CSs. Plus it's generally agreed to be far too easy currently so that would help fix it.
     
  8. zukenft

    zukenft Xx420NoWondeRHon0rStaRtxX

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    most scenarios in civ5 already have a form of victory points. maybe if we make a mod so the victory points system could be put into the standard game?
     
  9. Cicerosaurus

    Cicerosaurus Emperor

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    Sorry- never heard of it. That is my contribution :)
     
  10. CivCube

    CivCube Feelin' defiant.

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    Terra Mystica seems to be a straight translation of Civ 5 in boardgame form.
     
  11. El Caballerion

    El Caballerion King

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    Another reason I bring this up is because in real life, our ancestors weren't trying to get a domination victory or a science victory lol. They were merely trying to live and accomplish whatever their historic condition gave them. CIV should also be about ADAPTING to each epoch, and not just trying to reach some goal 6 thousand years after founding Athens.
     
  12. El Caballerion

    El Caballerion King

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    Again, I will also say that the victory conditions in CIV are my least favorite aspect of the game because I don't play CIV to 'win'. I play to enjoy the ride.
     
  13. Jaybe

    Jaybe civus fanaticus Supporter

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    For a 'play to enjoy the ride' type victory, I would prefer to keep civ's current victory conditions, but victory isn't determined until TIME victory turn: see how many victory conditions you can obtain.

    And then do it at Marathon speed, of course; :)
    on a large or huge map, just to have more fun.
     
  14. Dralix

    Dralix Killer of threads

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    Our ancestors weren't playing a game.

    Seems like this is the solution:

     
  15. Lochlann

    Lochlann Warlord

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    Yeah, I totally agree, and this is why I dislike playing "to win", and focus more on sandbox-style play, global beautification, etc., usually on lower levels where you don't have to focus on a specific VC or strategy to stay in the game. I almost exclusively play Huge/Marathon/Prince (or King).

    However, Dralix nails it: since this is a game, there must be victory, and thus the process of attempting to achieve that victory must at some point diverge from the true organic process of growing a civ. That's just unavoidable, and changing how "victory" is defined merely kicks the can down the road. You and I seem to have similar views on what is fun with the game; speaking for myself, no matter how long I have prolonged the game (usually via disabling all VCs except Domination and Science and making sure that I can nix other civs' space races), no matter how much I adhere to a real-world approach instead of a VC strategy, there is no avoiding the disappointment at finally winning. It's artificial, contrived; there is no "winning" in real life, Charlie Sheen rants aside. But that's just unavoidable. It's a game, and thus there is victory, and that fact lies at the end of every possible road.

    Now, discounting all that, I do like the idea of more flexible combination victory conditions. With some modifications. It may only be kicking the can down the road, but hey, more road is good. :) I think the various ways of earning VPs should all be enabled, and transparent, from the beginning of the game, rather than springing up randomly as the game progresses. If the VPs can come from any part of the game, it's unnecessary to enable them via pop-up condition quests.

    Like, if I know that my 100 VPs (say) can come from ANYTHING I do--spreading my religion, amassing culture, researching tech, conquering cities, allying with CSes, exploring the world, building Wonders, earning SPs, accruing population ("tall"), founding cities ("wide"), collecting artifacts, producing Great Works, terraforming the land; just, anything and everything that can be done in the game--then my approach to the game will be exactly the kind of sandbox thing you're talking about. No beelining for a particular kind of victory, no need to sacrifice real-life empire-growing decisions in order to match some contrived VC strategy; just empire-building, with the knowledge that any progress made in any aspect of gameplay is contributing to victory. If anything, having victory conditions pop up randomly hurts this, as it is possible that some of the conditions won't come up in a given game, which returns you to the core problem: that some of the things you do in the game will wind up not helping you to victory.

    I gotta say, though, that TheBlackHole also nails it: this kind of sandbox play is already available via the Time victory. A player's score derives from all aspects of gameplay (right?), and thus players' scores at the end of a Time victory can be seen as VPs. I personally dislike Time victories, and I prefer the approach I described above for maximum road-lengthening, but it's hard to argue with the observation that the game's score wraps up and presents most of what you're talking about.
     
  16. katfish

    katfish Warlord

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    SETTLERS OF SATAN?:satan:
     
  17. Greizer85

    Greizer85 Emperor

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    Not enough slaves or lava... Bad starting spot. I'd play that! :devil::goodjob:

    Iirc, there is already a mod to this effect. It was called something like 'Mastery Victory'. Or was it for Civ IV? Just search the Steam database for it, or the forums. They'll never make this official, since we 'role-players' seem to be in the minority. I'm always sad when my games end. 6,000 years of unique history down the drain and not even a lousy Victory movie to show for it... Ugh. :sad:
     
  18. HeraldtheGreat

    HeraldtheGreat King

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    There was a similar idea for an old Civ VI suggestion, methinks.
     
  19. teqofc

    teqofc Warlord

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    I beg to differ. I know this is opening a can of worms but my European ancestors were all about domination and science in the Americas. Send settlers to lands already occupied by natives... yea that's gonna end well :) The early English settlers didn't even know how to plant crops so they strong-armed the Powhatan for food and relations went downhill from there. Bring more experienced settlers and establish manufactories, multiply your population, take over native lands, advance technology... yep that sums up this game as in life sadly.

    One of my first G&K games I played Hiawatha and my neighbor was America. Within about 40 turns they DoW me. I just shook my head and said "wow, talk about historically accurate" :)
     
  20. Lochlann

    Lochlann Warlord

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    But the point is that your (our) ancestors weren't trying to WIN at anything. They were trying to Dominate, certainly, and we're always on a quest for Science, etc., but not for the purpose of winning a game with arbitrarily defined rules. It's not like the European colonists were thinking to themselves "okay, gotta cap Onondaga, then it's just 3 more capitals to take", or "grr, almost Influential with the Aztecs, c'mon where's that Great Musician...", etc.

    In other words, civilizations Dominate for the sake of immediate gain, or out of fear or ignorance, not because it advances the civ along some cosmic leaderboard. That's the distinction that the OP is talking about: since this is a game, the players unavoidably make decisions and set goals based on the rules of the game, not necessarily based on real-life priorities. Games function best when the rules of the game simulate those real-life priorities, create the illusion of real-life decision-making, but this must inevitably fall apart at some point, because it is a game.
     

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