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What would you want changed with the religion system?

Discussion in 'Civ5 - General Discussions' started by Alexander Boney, Mar 18, 2013.

  1. Rhavanna

    Rhavanna Chieftain

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    Alright, I'm pretty anti-religion myself, but to imply that religion was somehow responsible for the dark ages or any major technological hinderances is downright silly from a historical perspective. Major instances of religious beliefs threatening scientific progress are in my opinion more prevalent in recent history than in ancient. It's not until roughly the 20th centuries that we actually start to see religion pressure affecting widespread scientific *education*. Prior to that, sure the peasants might be convinced by the church that the Earth is stationary, but they were hardly the ones making scientific discoveries anyway.

    And as others have stated, religion groups and orders played a huge role in the preservation of knowledge throughout history as well. Islamic scholars and libraries kept droves of information and texts while Europe fell into disarray following the collapse of Rome. During the dark ages, monks and monastic libraries preserved and copied thousands of books, and for centuries in Europe it was often only the clergy who would be literate. We would have lost way more knowledge than we did without these functions.

    As to the game though, I agree that the religious system could use some tweaks. Desert folklore is widely considered completely broken, and other pantheon perks and picks are stronger than others.

    What I really miss from civ4 though, (and this might run contrary to what others feel) is religious war and alliances. Spawn next to Isabella? You'd better adopt her religion or expect a very angry Spain for the next 5000 years! Other leaders might not care nearly as much. Share religion, and you gained a huge diplomacy bonus with those civs. It was actually really fun having two or more religions grow to prominence, and cause massive multi-civ wars. It made conflicts somewhat predictable, and very fun/engaging because they often involved many parties. War in civ5 too often feels like: Civ A attacks player because "that's why", Civ B attacks Civ A out of opportunity, and so on.

    Much of this has to do with the diplomacy system in general, but religion could really improve this. In civ4, if boudy and I had been friends since the ancient era, shared a religion, fought in wars together, traded, etc etc, then I know I can *count* on her. Hell, she'll even give me stuff if I ask. In civ5, we could have been BFFs from day 1, traded, fought, etc, and she'd still randomly stab me in the ass given the opportunity, and wouldn't even THINK of offering charity. Religion in civ4 really served to cement those alliances.

    And then later in the game, (when people would start adopting free religion in civ4) and religion becomes less important, then those diplo modifiers can wear out and die off.

    Would be nice to see the various beliefs get balanced out a bit though. A lot of them are imo simply underestimated, or terrain-specific, but others are simply always better or worse than some. I think the spread system should also be seriously overhauled. I feel that religious pressure should be affected by population, (or actual followers more likely) and not simply on a per-city basis. A 30 pop city should not be religiously overwhelmed by 3 pop 1 cities. It's just silly.

    Oh! And regarding religion spread, they really need to buff up your options to dissuading foriegn missionaries! In civ4, if you adopted Theocracy, non-state religions could not spread in your cities. In civ5 we had the "ask nicely to please not spread your religion" option... but the AI can just blatantly ignore that, and there's no follow up request of "No, seriously, we will shoot your prophet on sight" without just straight up declaring war T_T;

    Moderator Action: Edited to remove language that is not family friendly but does not change the meaning.
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  2. Eagle Pursuit

    Eagle Pursuit Scir-Gerefa

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    I don't think we will see much in the way of religion changes other than maybe MotG Pantheon.

    IF they changed something, I'd like to see Inquisitors actually be able to catch missionaries and Great Prophets without starting a war. Then you would be able to pick between killing them for a diplomatic hit or expelling them from your borders. And perhaps the sender would get an amount of Faith reimbursed if the unit is killed depending on if it was a missionary or a Prophet and how many uses they had left. Their martyrdom inspired the believers back home or something.
     
  3. Alexander Boney

    Alexander Boney Chieftain

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    Thanks guys. Here's something more for you to argue about:
    3:) The Rationalism tree might reduce religious bonuses?
    Considering the fact that one policy is called Secularism, perhaps adoption of Rationalism slowly reduces religious effects? This does seem like a detriment though, so maybe give Rationalism a bigger bonus might help?
     
  4. kingchris20

    kingchris20 Wisdom Seeker

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    I think after you have warned another civ, or another civ has warned you not to spread religion to your/their cities, you should be able to capture/kill the offenders with no automatic war.

    If that unit happens to be in your/their territory
     
  5. GenjiKhan

    GenjiKhan Emperor

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    One of the things I'd like to see in this expansion is the division of the follower belief slots into 2 branches:

    - The first branch,that have 2 slots,are composed of follower beliefs that do not require religious majority in order to work . They are attached to the number of the followers of said religion . Its name would still be Follower belief;
    - The second branch,which only have 1 slot,works like follower beliefs,except it requires religious majority in order to work . Its name can be Consensus belief;

    The Consensus belief of a religion is not decided by the religion founder . To get this one,the player must adopt Theocracy .
     
  6. Granty555

    Granty555 Chieftain

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    Talking King level and up here.

    I find the pantheons are pretty good - I often take a wide range of these depending on initial map, what civ I'm playing, what VC I'm going to try and go for (and yes DF is too strong, I would personally probably give it the same tile requirements as Petra).

    However, the founder/follower beliefs.....Every time I found my religion I look through them all, try and weigh up the pros and cons and then always pick one of the top 2 (+1 happiness/+2 gold per city) and almost always Pagodas. All the others just don't seem anywhere near as good to me (feel free to correct my misconceptions!).

    So in my mind I'd like more versatility with the actual religious beliefs. Perhaps some with strong bonuses but downsides to them as well?
     
  7. codepoet

    codepoet Commander of Cubicle 42

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    I agree completely. I do the same with pantheons (though the trade route science bonus one I pick more often than the others). But once I start a religion, exactly the same each time (happiness or gold bonus), then a building (preference of pagoda then cathedral [happiness]), then either the one that makes it spread further or faster.
    So more variety would be interesting... to me this means more powerful effects, but at the same time more specialized/circumstantial (so the existing ones that are too useful in too many situations need to be modified). There's a mod I love that adds a ton of religion beliefs to choose from, but I had to stop using it because it seemed to be related to unexpected crashes.
     
  8. Liex

    Liex King

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    I really don't like how religions expands. When you (or the AI) are using prophets and missionaries, it's just too volatile, but its natural expansion is somewhat slow and unclear. So I'd like to see:

    1. Less situations where a city's religion keep changing as if there's no tomorrow.
    2. A faster natural conversion in some situations. Eg.: If two cities are connected by a road, the religious pressure between them should be stronger. (It seems that trade routes will do something like this)
    3. A better interface for Religion, namely a Religion overlay in the strategical map. This would make religious expansion more clear.
     
  9. kingchris20

    kingchris20 Wisdom Seeker

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    Yeah, I wonder how hard it would be to do a "heatmap" overlay (much the same as the hex/resources overlay that you can tick/untick) that shows darker color as most pressure down to a lighter color as the pressure fades......
     
  10. The QC

    The QC Quietly Confident

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    I know the feeling, I had it myself and, for the longest time, I only played with the beliefs that give religious buildings. In fact, my combo was always almost the same, involving the pantheon with bonus growth (can't remember the name now), Tithe and some religious buildings.

    After reading some interesting forum threads, I decided to experiment more with religion and found many more ways to play. Pantheons are especially well designed to be situational, but the others also provide more interesting options than you'd think.

    The belief that allows you to buy units with faith, for instance, is an insane game changer. If you have a good faith engine, you'll never have to produce units and will always gave a strong army. Once you reach the Industrial era and you can't buy units with faith any more, you can switch to buying great people with it, so it remains useful (very useful). Of course, this belief should not be used in conjunction with any other belief that requires you to spend faith (so, no religious buildings).

    The beliefs that give you military bonuses around converted cities are also quite interesting and effective.

    There are many combinations and things that you can do, you if you set out to try new things. I'm glad that I eventually did that and I highly recommend it.
     
  11. Matthew.

    Matthew. Deity

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    I find the system to be much more dynamic than that. For example if I am playing a domination game as Japan, I am going to pick the +100 gold on conversion. I'm not going to be prioritizing temples or attempting to bring missionaries along with my military, nor am I going to have a lot of extra faith to keep many cities under my religion. I will take the 400+ gold up front. If I get lucky and it does manage to spread out to an empire who hasn't founded a religion yet, that is a lot of early gold to get my war machine up and running. It won't pay out as much in the long game if I were Maya and converting the whole world to the One True Faith, but for a conquering Japan with little interest in diverting resources to faith, it works.

    That case can be made for many of the traits. Pagodas are indeed good, but much less so if you aren't playing a faith-based Civ or near a faith natural wonder (or exploiting desert folklore, but that breaks the religion system anyway, so moot point). Quite often I'd rather take the +1 :c5happy: on shrines or +2 :c5happy: on temples. It is quicker and easier than trying to get pagodas up in every city.
     
  12. Imalich

    Imalich Warlord

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    I also like to buy a faith generating pantheons and beliefs, alongside the kicker that make great prophets cheaper and a full piety policy tree. Holy Sites all around...
    It makes up for an incredible late game "great person buying machine".

    Combining cheaper missionaries and the science related beliefs is also cool. But alas, tithe, growth, desert folklore, religious buildings and faster religious expansion are all way ahead of the others in most scenarios.
     
  13. GreenRoomGames

    GreenRoomGames Chieftain

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    There's a slight chance that I will completely mess up the quoting system as I have never used it before. Sorry if I do...

    Before I go on I want to say that I agree wholeheartedly that in Civ religion should not exclude science.

    Be warned this is the long version. ;)

    We needed religion in the ancient era to tell us why water fell from the sky. We know why water falls from the sky in the modern era. Religion in olden times meant a lack of curiosity towards some things in order to focus on matters of practicality. It also specialized in shielding itself from criticism. Science is very curious and it likes criticizing things. This gives birth to a long and interesting rivalry we still argue over today.

    Today those same countries that once were under the Islamic golden age are now punishing girls for the crime of literacy. Religion served them quite well in the ancient era but not so well in the modern.

    Moderator Action: Changed some words while not changing meaning. This is a family friendly site, please keep this in mind when you post.
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    And as for Tenochitlanians I believe that they painted children blue and sacrificed them to summon rain. They also never discovered the wheel. Seriously, they literally, did not discover the wheel. I have no words. They were incredibly remedial in terms of technology and understanding of reality.

    And the church found this progress blasphemous when it contradicted it's teachings.

    Okay, that's not entirely fair. The Galileo thing was a really isolated incident. The church did help to spawn things like the printing press and some of modern chemistry.

    But Catholicism also works to deny things like evolution and stem cell research. Think of how much more effectively we could have been working on selectively breeding crops and animals had religion given the green light.

    I would say that the entire Gaza strip fiasco is entirely religious. The Jewish people want to purge the mosques of Islam from their holy-land so that their Messiah will appear. The Palestines are obviously miffed about their lands being taken, but they are also bound by the Quran to never give up Muslim land.

    The global war on terror is also fueled on seeking and destroying small radical religious groups that think that the western world contradicts their beliefs. The highly religious conflict in Ireland between Protestants and Catholics was also very destructive and was almost entirely religious.

    Religion is fine in a secularist society for promoting basic order, charity and culture, but if a church grows to strong in government (if it adopts piety), then the government may decide to hold back progress that contradicts their beliefs. I think that this is the main reason that Piety and Rationalism are incompatible in-game.

    There are many famous clashes in education and policy between belief and knowledge so I can understand why Firaxis designed the social policies the way they did. I also think that making religion specialization and technology specialization mutually exclusive was a highly political move. I think that there is certainly historical merit for doing this but I would still have them undo it for the sake of political correctness.

    There are some other changes I would make to the religion system too...

    The ability to add a persistent tech flavor to your religion would be nice. If you adopt "God of the Sea" then Sailing, compass etc. are cheaper. Just overall cleverer/more fun beliefs that have a larger impact on the game and allow for more specialization for the VCs.

    I think that you could make some improvements to the holy city mechanics as well. If you capture a holy city and/or completely destroy a founder why can't you take their founder beliefs? It might be a little OP to have two religions but taking out a founder is often very difficult as these Civs are generally the ones with their acts together.

    The Civs with benefits toward faith production like Celtic and Ethiopian get a religion almost right off the bat. On the higher difficulties if one of these Civs spawn in the human player nearly always screwed out of a religion. Byzantine is fine because you just get a higher reward, but it's not any easier to get to the reward than any other civ. Civs can get good religion-related benefits without increasing their early game faith.

    As for atheistic benefits you could always adopt messenger of the gods, interfaith dialogue and rename your religion Atheism. Playing pretend is fun.:)
     
  14. whyidie

    whyidie Emperor

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    The crux of the problem. Its not that science and religion cannot, have not, or will not exist at the same time. Its that the very nature of most religions has a tendency to impede scientific curiosity and discovery. Hard to quantify, but to hold up examples of scientific progress being made while religious rule was prominent is a logical fallacy and misses the point.

    Since I agreed with you before I'll agree with you again on the idea of no mutual exclusion. If I want to have a culture or religion that promotes scientific thought, I should be able to create that with my religious and policy beliefs. Using the founder and pantheon beliefs I can create a religion that would be conducive to a scientific civilization. Making the piety and rationalism social policies mutually exclusive limits my ability to do this.
     
  15. Birdjaguar

    Birdjaguar Hanafubuki Retired Moderator Supporter

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    Moderator Action: If you want to discuss current events in religion or politics, you will find ample opportunities in our Off topic forums.
     
  16. Kwami

    Kwami Emperor

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    While the idea of a religion that promotes scientific thought is interesting, it's also almost nonsensical. You could redefine "religion" to make the idea work, but I don't really see the point in doing so. We already have things like "ideology" to fill that role.

    Anyway, the Piety tree is available in the early eras of the game when "science" didn't really exist. Rationalism comes much later, suggesting an enlightenment and a move away from superstition. The split is there to make this clear.

    As I wrote previously, my problem with the split is that it's an all-at-once thing. Civilizations don't instantly change in that way. I'd prefer to see each a smoother transition that suggested the waning influence of the church. For each Rationalism policy you adapt, you must give up one Piety policy. Wouldn't that be more fun?
     
  17. whyidie

    whyidie Emperor

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    Ha! True, its not terribly "realistic".

    Yes, I could go for something along those lines. Which probably leaves me at the conclusion that all things considered, I'm fairly happy with how they've implemented religion :)
     
  18. seancolorado

    seancolorado Deity

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    Agreed. It would not be so ridiculous, however, to say that religion has hindered social development (e.g. having political decisions based off of faith)

    Not sure how you would implement that in the game though
     
  19. _hero_

    _hero_ King

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    I just want to see some of the options buffed/changed to be closer in value to others.
     
  20. kaspergm

    kaspergm Deity

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    Actually, the +2 Gold/city is the plain worse of the three Gold-generating founders. Unless you play extreme ICS, Tithe will generate significantly more Gold in the long run, and if you want fast gold early, go for the +100 Gold on conversion (which is the one I pick, and which I think people undervalue a lot).

    However, my 5 cents on what should be changed:

    1) Prophets should spawn whenever you hit threshold. The chance thing is just plain stupid. It's an extremely easy fix for those who play with mods, though.

    2) I'm not even sure if I like the automatic spawning of great prophets. Often I don't even want the prophet to spawn but want to save the faith for something else - I can see the automatic spawning as a balancing thing, but it's not really helping the player. Particularly not because Great Mosque Of Djenne is not working properly, so your Great Prophets don't get the extra charge when they spawn automatically but only when you buy them, so often I'll find myself stalling until Industrial, using the faith on something else if there is something else to buy, saving those GP.

    3) Some beliefs need serious rebalancing. +1 Culture from Shrines, lol? Desert Folklore needs to lose the faith from Flood Plains. Several founder beliefs (World Church, Papal Primacy, Pilgrimage) and most of the Enhancer beliefs (anything but Itinerant Preachers, Religious Texts and perhaps Holy Order/Messiah) plain suck.

    4) Inquisitors should be slightly cheaper (similar to Monasteries). And I'm not too fond of the Great Prophets ignore open-border agreements rule without any attrition, perhaps give them a lower attrition (-100?).
     

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