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[RD] What is your wishlist for Civ VII to have?

Played a ton of CivDOS and still play Civ III, played a little SMAC, and dabbled in Civ 4. Never played V, BE, or VI, basically because of Steam + 1 UPT (plus, for a game that's supposed to be about grand global strategy, the city-districting in VI looked daft to me; if I want to play a city-builder, I'll choose one that does it properly)...

But if we're dreaming, I'd love to be able to play a Civ which fixes the minor-but-unmoddable irritations I have with CivIII, without turning into the pointless-unit-promotion-complexity that is CivIV-warfare, or the AI-incompetence-with-1-UPT that (apparently) plagues the later versions.

If Barbs can potentially persist into the late game, they should evolve over time, with their unit-types lagging a little behind the tech-leaders — this happened in CivDOS (where software limitations prevented both the human and the AI from completely carpeting the map with towns, so Barbs could continue to spawn into the space-age), but not unmodded CivIII (where the entire map will inevitably be 100% inhabited long before the end of the Medieval era — or only little later on modded Huge+ maps).

Units should have maintenance-costs related to their complexity/shield-cost (and/or distance from the capital), rather than the current government(/civics) chosen — and if they require resources to build, they should also require those resources to repair (Lost your Oil-supply? Too bad, not only can you no longer build Tanks, the ones you already built are now going to grind to a halt!).

If transport-boats are to be included, transport-capacities should (also) be measured in terms of shield-weights, rather than absolute numbers of units (in both CivDOS and CivIII, a Galley can transport 2 Warriors [=20 shields in Civ3] — or 2 Tanks [=200 shields]!)

Trading-reputation should not get permanently broken by factors almost completely beyond the player's control (e.g. a Barbarian momentarily blocking a trade-route, or the AI losing its only Harbour and cutting all its overseas trade-routes!). Deliberately breaking a deal should incur reputational damage, sure, but (eventual) redemption should be allowed.

A more dynamic map would be cool, which included elements like prevailing ocean currents (which could affect naval movement path-lengths, or probability of sinking), or terrain which altered over sufficiently long time-scales, with fallow tiles getting wilder and/or exploited tiles degrading (CivIII has 'pollution' and 'global warming' mechanics which degrade tiles in the industrial/modern era, and resources which get randomly 'exhausted', but that's about it).

I do really like the idea of hexes over square/isometric tiles, but I'd also love to see (at last!) a pseudospherical globe, based on an icosahedral frame with each face subdivided into equilateral triangles (for unit pathfinding; varying the number of subdivisions per face would allow for different-sized globes), i.e. a gameboard which would be mostly hexes, but would require pentagons — maybe of non-Settle-able Mountain/Ocean terrain? — to induce 'curvature' at the icosahedral vertices.
Speaking of Civ V, I am quite unhappy with the user interface. I do not have it open at the moment, but why does it take so many clicks to do simple stuff? Further, I would prefer to move units using keyboard controls rather than the mouse. Perhaps we ought to be able to use either. In the same way, the Victorian looking design with fancy gold frames is OK when you get used to it. It would be little trouble to have an option for a cleaner, less cluttered look too.

As for gameplay, that is complex. Even a small change can impact balance and so on. That said, if City A builds a worker (or whatever) it ought to get a discount if it builds a worker again next turn. In this way a player would be rewarded for having cities specialize in building certain units.
Fundamentally, a return to the Civ I -> Civ IV type of design, where empire building ("playing wide" as some call it) is not punished like in Civ V, where you can have multiple units per tile, and where the AI is good enough that you can actually be worried at times. Semi-realistic graphics would also be a plus; while superficial, whenever I think "maybe I'll try Civ VI", I see the leader graphics and am reminded of how it deviates from the Civ games that got me into the series.

Beyond those basics, a more involved diplomatic system would be great, and is something I have become used to with Paradox titles. And... basically just polishing the areas of Civ III/IV that were lacking. Being able to build bigger empires if you have the computer resources (no MAFs). Stardock-style AI that is smarter on higher difficulties and takes advantage of multiple core systems.

I'm hesitant to suggest too many more changes because IMO, Civ III/IV were largely on the right track, just limited by engine/computing power limitations of their times. Civ V tried too many new things that might have sounded good on paper, but took the series away from its strengths, and Civ VI tried some new things (e.g. districts) from other 4X games (*cough* Endless Legend *cough*) that were interesting on paper, but mostly kept what didn't work well in V. I'd rather have a conservative, back-to-the-drawing-board of Civ IV approach than a "let's try a whole bunch of new things and hope it comes together" approach. Instead of the 1/3 new stuff axiom that Firaxis has, add 10% new stuff and just make the old stuff really awesome.

(Background: Played tons of Civ III, lots of Civ IV, 50-100 hours of Civ V but didn't like it, picked up Civ VI free on EGS last year and liked it more than V in one partial game, but not enough to buy any xpacks. Also played Beyond Earth on a free weekend, found is less irksome than V but with many of the same flaws, and didn't see a lot of replay potential)
A feature that lets you play a randomly assigned Civ, but lets you check off any of the civs that you don't want to be in the random-generation mix.

In another thread, I floated the idea of a new victory condition. You would have the option of playing your civ sustainably. Probably the way it would work is for every tech, it would take you 50% longer to earn it because you also have to develop the mechanisms for keeping it sustainable. So you fall way behind everyone in tech, and that makes you vulnerable to attack, of course. But if you do manage to live sustainably for some number of consecutive turns (large number, 250 or so), you win.
A feature that lets you play a randomly assigned Civ, but lets you check off any of the civs that you don't want to be in the random-generation mix.
I could be wrong, but I thought Civ VI had customisable leader pools. I might be mixing it up with something else though.

(this isn't to say "play Civ VI", more that just it's possibly a solved problem)
I picked up VI but never got into it, so maybe I didn't explore far enough to see that it had that option. So, yeah, just keep that feature, then.

Another thing I'd like is to be able to myself write the names of geographic features on the map, and have my labels 1) not clutter up any of the game information and 2) grow and shrink appropriately with the zoom. So for instance, if there are several tiles of mountains, I can label that as a mountain range (with the text angled to follow the arc of the involved tiles). I can write my name in a spot of my own choosing and a size of my own choosing. But those things are relative to the totality of tiles that I designate as belonging to that geographic feature, and so the label shrinks or grows as I zoom in or out.

At present I just do this in Paint with screenshots of my maps.
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I would like to have a basic science tree, which is shared by all civs in contact with each other. It would mostly enable techs and maybe some global features.

Most of the useful stuff would be unlocked by techs which each civ would need to research individually. A strong scientific civ could get an advantage by developing the best longswords, but once gunpowder is known to the world, a weaker civ could catch up by getting access to basic muskets.

It would solve the issue of runaway civs being much more advanced and avoid unrealistic spearmen vs tanks battles
Break up the India civ
Pastoralist societies modeled differently. I dunno how that’d be implemented. It’d take thought.

I would think they’d have a mobile city that has population and works terrain, but faces disadvantages. Maybe they wouldn’t be able to improve tiles, or they’re limited to pasture improvements(though they’d be buildable off of resources, at lower yields)
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