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[Xtended] New Civs (re)design

Discussion in 'Wildmana Modmod' started by esvath, Oct 9, 2016.

  1. MagisterCultuum

    MagisterCultuum Great Sage

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    You know I wasn't much of a fan of the idea of having any intelligent undead civilization, until Kael revealed that one such culture actually is canonically part of Erebus.

     
    esvath likes this.
  2. Gelscressor

    Gelscressor Chieftain

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    Although I do think it is an interesting idea to diversify the Aristarkh, I will also add that this does not necessarily require a large lore rewrite IMO. It makes sense for other (evil) intelligent undead to align themselves with a vampire civilization; if only due to them having much more in common with vampires than mortals. For that matter, compared to most other intelligent undead in fantasy, vampires traditionally have a fairly easy time accumulating numbers. They can simply create their own spawn! In comparison, each would-be lich needs to perform a complicated, dangerous ritual to turn into a lich; and the path of a potential death knight is anything but predictable. This is also why vampires are (for instance) in Dungeons and Dragons a lot more common than liches and death knights (and mummies too, for that matter!).

    And speaking of liches, a lich could be a good choice for a potential third leader (hardly a priority, though; just thinking ahead in the long run!).
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2016
  3. Calavente

    Calavente Richard's voice

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    I would disagree on Lore.

    in FFH, vampires are NOT undead... they are sould-drinkers, drinking the soul-force/lifeforce of the living. but they themselves are living.

    conversly, Aristarkh or Scions are undead : they died once.

    /regards
     
  4. Bolaji

    Bolaji Chieftain

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    For Aristarkh:
    Units like Shades (Sidar) - can be bought for souls and used like GP (may be weaker or very expencive)
    1) compensate lack of population in cities and slow progress in science and culture.
    2)Aristarkh will be more agressive because need more souls.
     
  5. Linvega

    Linvega Chieftain

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    Since the discussion died down, I have something new for everyone now :D

    I recently started modding xtended and I made some relatively simple changes to the Aos Si to make the leaders really feel different to each other and to make the winter court viable. The changes:

    -Larincsindhe is now phil/enlightened. This allows him to flexibly jump from winter court to summer court. Phil makes the winter court very strong since without the need for food you can employ a lot of specialists. However, without a way to grow, Larincsindhe still needs to regularly switch back to the summer court, but doesn't get punished for doing so thanks to enlightened.

    -Cairn is now char/hunt. Hunter is a new trait I made specifically for him that gives a slight fighting buff to recon units and more importantly allows you to capture slaves for 50 mana which can be sacrificed for another 50 mana (the cost is still up for revision, but 100 mana for one pop seems good so far) to increase the population of a city by one. This uniquely allows Cairn to permanently stay in the winter court civic and gives him general some unique play(basically mana takes the role of food for him, and you need to aggressively capture slaves a lot if you want decently sized cities). it also gives him some interesting synergy with the slavery tech; While the slavery civic is unappealing for him, being able to get slaves without the need to pay mana is worth a lot to him. Char is also half a military trait, has decent synergy with winter court and just seemed more fitting to a faerie than aggressive.
    Overall, together with the winter court changes, this makes Cairn a very frightening military leader, without being too bad in the economic department(while his normal kit imo makes him very one-dimensional).

    -Crom stays the same as usual. He is very good while simply playing summer court and I want him to stay that way.

    -Winter court:
    -no extra maintenance
    -no extra military
    -no extra production: extra maintenance is very punishing so it had to go, while extra military and extra production seemed actually unnecessary/over the top, together with the other changes
    -fishing boats +2 hammers +2 gold: Originally I wanted to give just +1 hammer +1 gold for ALL water tiles, but after playtesting I'm actually fine with this. This still makes being at the coast uniquely appealing if you want to be in winter court a lot, while the summer court prefers inland.
    -winter faerie race gets no -15% strength penalty: It just seemed weird to me that the summer faerie race was actually stronger than the winter faerie race since it gives extra healing. Now the winter faerie race is actually stronger in fighting, but still lacks the extra healing.

    Water Magic:
    -Riches of the Sea now adds Ressources instead of gold.
    -Gravity moved to water magic instead of nature

    Both these changes imo were necessary to make water magic a bit more appealing in comparison to nature magic, which imo still is significantly stronger than everything else especially for faeries, but not by such a huge margin anymore. Being able to create land also just fits water magic civs infinitely better than nature magic civs because it allows you to fix bad coastlines, which are otherwise quite punishing for water-based civs.

    Todo:- I still think about adding some kind of damaging/weakening aura to the winter court realm instead of the fighting "buff". But the winter court is unique enough right now, so it's imo not necessary.
    - Mind magic is still pretty odd for the faeries and even less useful than water, but on the other hand, Larincsindhe is very strong in terms of traits now anyway.
    - I'm also still not sure if Cairn should have phil instead of Larincsidhe since he's the "winter court guy". On the other hand, without phil Larincsidhe doesn't have much reason to change into the winter court except in war times, so giving phil to Larincsidhe instead seems like the better way to handle things.

    Please discuss these changes. On Calaventes remark, I also realized that the different court civics are the "core mechanic" of the faeries, so I tried to focus on that instead of bringing in new stuff like winter/summer cities. I playtested these changes quite a bit and to me they seem to accomplish what I want. I also really like that unexpectedly, empyrean is now also a viable religion choice for faeries that aren't crom, because liberty + winter court is great.
     
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2016
  6. esvath

    esvath Apprentice of Erebus

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    RE: Aos Si
    Oh, those are exciting changes, especially the Hunter trait. Does Hunter trait allow a spell to create Slave?

    Also, do you think Cairn should start with Winter Civic? If he starts with Summer then how about the Slave mechanism? Can he put slaves into summer cities for extra growth?

    If the mod is pure xml, you can release the files as a module. If the community likes it and you are OK, I will include your changes to the Aos Si in next version of Xtended.

    RE: Gravity
    I'll take a look at the schools.
     
  7. Linvega

    Linvega Chieftain

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    No, the hunter trait gives recon units the hunter promotion, which allows them to cast "Abduct" for 50 mana, which gives them the "Abduction" promotion for a single turn which allows the unit to capture a slave with 100% success chance if it wins in combat that turn. It sounds more complicated than it is ;). The slave can then use the "Winterfeast" ability for 50 mana if it's in a friendly city to increase the pop by one. I think this fits with lore, too, since faeries are known for abducting humans, and even having human cattle(see the text of crom for example).

    The spells also need python, but I made that modular, too (sephi made a thread about how that works).

    Adding it to xtended would be great, thanks! But for now, I mainly posted it to find out whether the other players here like the changes or have some remarks how I can make them better.
     
  8. esvath

    esvath Apprentice of Erebus

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    Ah I see. I assume Winterfeast for Slave use python requirement to check leader's trait? Otherwise that will make all Slaves in every civs can cast Winterfeast. :D

    Personally, I think Abduct should cost no mana, just let Hunter trait gives promotion(s) to recon units, giving them chance to get Slaves. Then Winterfeast cost 100 mana. Thus Cairn can hoard lots of slaves and use them for various needs. He can build his empire based on Slave economy. Also, less spells/python = AI more capable of using the mechanism.
     
  9. Linvega

    Linvega Chieftain

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    Yeah, I'm also thinking about how to divide the mana cost. Having half/half is nice because it allows easier mana management, and it makes the slavery guild a bit more appealing if you don't need to pay everything on using the feast. But the AI having an easier time is a good argument.
    So far I made Winterfeast Aos Si-exclusive. So Crom and Larincsidhe can in principle also use it, which I actually like because it gives options, but Cairn still profits the most from it by far. Unlike Cairn they would need to take slavery, so it would take quite a bit of an investment in comparison. And Crom doesn't really profit from the ability anyway, you usually have enough food in the summer court.
     
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2016
  10. Linvega

    Linvega Chieftain

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    It really seems like this subforum suddenly died out :(
    Anyway, I now tried the change you mentioned - recon units now get slaves with a static 40% chance(percentage is of course up for revision,that's just the value I used) and the Winterfeast ability costs 80 mana(slightly less expensive to make up for the fact that you have to pay it all at once instead of being able to split it up how it fits you).It plays nicely, too, and the AI should be better at handling it.
    Also, two other things I noticed are extremely annoying in the winter court:
    1. You can't build cottages even though they're the favorite improvement of the faeries and one of the few improvements that are actually quite good in winter court
    2. You can't build cities inside your borders anymore since you don't have food anywhere anymore.
    I've added a spell to create a cottage for 40 mana to the slaves which also sacrifices the slave and I'm thinking about adding a spell for creating a city, too(maybe 200 mana?). Both are of course only castable inside your borders, so you can't just use the slaves instead of settlers in general. What do you think about this?
     
  11. Jojo_Fr

    Jojo_Fr Prince

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    I disagree with this new mechanism idea of enslaving to have pop.

    It already exist : Mane's Infernal. It's hard to practice in early game unless you can exploit and abuse the barbarian lairs. It's a very evil mechanism. It does not feat with evil feys.

    Suggestions off simplier mechanism :

    - Force each 20 turns auto change from summer court to winter court, then vice versa. It's a bi season civ right ? So do it like it.
    - Taking Eternal Court suppress definitively this forced feature.
    - It will force the player to be more organised (planify 20 turns of growth, then no growth at all for 20 turns).
    - They will be able to build summer/winter court, but only in 20 turns (so it needs an advanced productive city).
    - The A.I will have no problem to manage this.
    - You can remove the Philosopher trait (which does not feat at all with this fey civ I think) and put an Arcane or any other good trait.
     
  12. Calavente

    Calavente Richard's voice

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    thanks Linvega for your mod ideas.
    the slavery aspect is interesting : the FFH version of changelings !!

    it made me think of a few for Winter Court.
    - Winter court is by definition the exampe of "stagnation" (maybe even more than Illians...) So: why would you need maintenance for? maybe, instead of "no increased maintenance"... you could go with "no maintenance" (or reduced maintenance)?
    - another tibit would be to give increased xp gain for units during winter or lower xp for leveling up (their are more evil / more focused on combat... they get more levels during their winter-period)
    - is WinterFeast limited for use during Winter-civic or not ?
    - Can the Winterfairies have a UU for slaves where the slaves can "teleport" to the capital ? (in lore, aos-si have a strange relationship with space-time ; and it would allow those faraway winter-fairies to get the slaves back easily instead of having to escort them back.
     
  13. esvath

    esvath Apprentice of Erebus

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    Eh, that's natural for a modmodmod of a game tens of years old :D Also, some players are interested in playing, not participating in the discussion. I reckon the latest mod has been downloaded hundreds of time, but there are (at most?) ten of us here :p

    Building cottage in Snow is tricky. I might allow Cottage in Snow but that will make the Illians even more powerful than it is now. Spell for slave building Cottage is good but if that's using python, I am afraid the AI either won't know or will always cast it.

    On can not build cities in Snow, I actually am fine with that. That will give incentive for players to use Summer Court.

    Because the mechanism is already present in Manes, it is easier for the AI. It means Sephi has somewhat taught the AI how to use Mane and Mane-like mechanism, thus they can do well with it.
    About flavour, Aos Si is rather wicked in my opinion, thus changing their Good leader to Neutral.

    Actually, forcing AI to change civics is bad. They will have hard time to prepare. It's better to give the AI a guide toward certain civic (using Flavour and AI Weight, or maybe python code) and let them adopt the civic according to their needs.

    I agree with everything that Calavente has said and want to put emphasis on this.
    Giving a promotion which allow Slaves to cast Escape (like Amurites' Chanter) is doable and will help them to secure their newly gained slave.

    Further thought on the WhiteFeast spell:
    • Do you use a python requirement which check the city's happiness and food income? Otherwise, the AI will bloated their cities and when they return to Summer, their cities might shrink due to unhappiness and starvation.
     
  14. Linvega

    Linvega Chieftain

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    In the early game, you'll be summer court no matter what, usually until the first 1-4 cities hit their pop ceiling, depending on circumstances. The difference between Cairn and Larincsidhe is just that Cairn can afterwards stay indefinitely in winter court while Larincsidhe needs to change back again to grow. So as Cairn in early game you will grow as normal and stock up on slaves & mana, until you can afford to use them to "feed" your cities. At least in my experience, the main bottleneck early on is mana, not the slaves, because 80 mana is a pretty hefty price early on. Meanwhile, killing some barbarians is something you should do either way, especially with a military-focused leader.

    Abducting humans is also a key trait of both classic faerie lore as well as part of ffh faerie lore, and I already disliked that it was almost non-existent in terms of gameplay aside from the fetch so far.

    I like the general idea of forced bi season for Larincsidhe, but I dislike equalizing all the three leaders that way. My design goals are viability & variability, so having one "summer court guy", one "winter court guy" and one "both courts" guy seems like the natural choice. Though on the other hand, one could argue that being able to change is the more engaging mechanic since when to change is a very meaningful decision to make. Maybe a fourth guy who has strong traits, but to balance it off needs to go through forced seasons?
     
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2016
  15. Linvega

    Linvega Chieftain

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    - Yeah, I'm also thinking about taking away the reduced maintenance from summer court and putting it into the winter court instead. Though in any case the modifier shouldn't be too high because the winter court is actually pretty decent as Larincsidhe/Cairn
    - A simple fighting buff already accomplishes that pretty decently and if I'd change anything about that, then I'd prefer some cool aura effect instead like you mentioned before
    -In my current implementation it's always usable, but I want to make it winter-only. Though I wouldn't use it in summer court because the city would either grow anyway or starve back to normal size anyway, so there's that.
    -That's a great idea! I don't know how to implement this, but Esvath should be able to do that.

    The spell uses python only for the requirements, but not for the creation of the cottages, that's done in xml.


    Okay, that's fair. It's uncommon enough, not being able to build cottages was more annoying to me.

    Being able to grow cities even though they'd be unhealthy without fallow imo is a perk of winter court and should stay, at least for Cairn. You have to keep in mind that if you make a food requirement, then Cairn will basically have both disadvantages at once - you effectively have to pay mana AND food, not just one of the two. Though Larincsidhe will want to keep the cities healthy, that's true. However, making a happiness requirement sounds good, I'll do that.

    Edit:
    Sorry I missed that remark(that's why I sometimes prefer a second post instead of editing the old post...)
    No, as said, Cairn will need to play in summer court at first, too. If we want for Cairn to be able to play winter court right of the bat, then he imo definitely needs some additional perks, like starting with slightly bigger cities (size 2 or 3) or something like that. And at least I personally don't mind it because you'll still play in winter court for the majority of your playthrough anyway.
     
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2016
  16. esvath

    esvath Apprentice of Erebus

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    Is this about Slave having teleporting ability?

    There are several ways of doing it, the easiest way imho is using onUnitCreated in CvEventManager.py to put a promotion to the newly created slave, if the owner has certain civic/trait/whatever. You can create a new promotion or just use Amurites' Chanter promotion.
    The drawback of this is, the Slave has to cast teleport on the next turn, thus there is still a small chance of losing the slave.

    The other way is copying Manes mechanic: using onUnitKilled and modify Custom Functions to give you slave in a random city you own. More work in python but the "teleporting" is done instantly.
     
  17. Calavente

    Calavente Richard's voice

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    • :) you are right... too much bonus in winter is not necessary
    • that too... the aura would be the best. (maybe it's possible to mimic the poison aura mechanics of "poison master class" ? it works well, and just changing the damage from poison to cold might do the trick.
    • to make it winter-only, a "simple" way would be to allow the spell only on ice/tundra tiles. IIRC the city-plot is almost immediatly changed into ice/tundra ; and even in actual tundra, you wouldn't be able to use it in Summer as Summer cities forces the terrain into grassland/wetland.
    • for teleporting slaves ? my way would be to create a slave UU for Aos-Si, which is born with the same ability as "the Chanter" UU. However, I'm not sure if of the mechanics for slave creation. would that slave-UU be called at all time? or only at random ? Esvath's solution would be more fail-proof IMO.
    I noticed a point : re-Improvements;
    due to switching from grassland to ice, and then to eternal lands, I'm not sure about the availability of the improvements. (not couting windmills/waterthingy/watermill)

    pasture and tradepost need plains (tundra): they will be forbidden to get those. unless there is a pasture ressource. (and they can't use the get-pasture-ressource of FoL or GM).

    winery and quarry might be unavailable on grass/ice.
     
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2016
  18. Linvega

    Linvega Chieftain

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    Okay thanks, I'll try that!

    -I'll look at the poison master class, though I'd also like an aura effect for the realm/for your cities instead of for the units
    -Making the spell castable only on Ice Terrain is a good idea, I'll do that.
    -Imo it's fine if you can't build all the other improvements, you mostly want cottages and specialists in winter court
     
  19. esvath

    esvath Apprentice of Erebus

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    There are several ways of making aura effect for cities:

    1) Use hostile global enchantment
    • Make a global enchantment which grant promotion XYZ to enemy units.
    • Put a pyeffect (forgot the exact tag but it should be in CIV4PromotionInfosSchema.xml) to call a python function.
    • Damage the affected units through python.
    • The plus side: AI fully understand this and will cast the GE whenever it has enough mana (AI still prioritise Summons though...).
    • The drawback (?): this will affect *all* hostile units in *regardless* of their position. Thus not an aura exclusive to your realm and will scale its powerfulness with increasing number of wars you are fighting.
    2) Use onCityTurn / onBeginTurn
    • I forgot which one of those python function, but you can look for Citadel of Light in CvEventManager.py and place yours in this same function.
    • You need to make a building, then use the building to trigger the python effect like Citadel of Light above.
    • The plus side: it will works as a "city aura" and you can play with it as you wish.
    • The drawback: I don't think AI will understand this completely.
      • You need to give the building a yield/commerce benefit to entice AI to build it but even then, AI will only weight the yield/commerce, not the python effects;
      • OR, you can use onCityBuild or onPlayerTurn to automatically grant the building to any AI cities with Winter Civic or something like that.
    3) Use onPlayerTurn
    • Whenever Aos si's turn, check for hostile units and damage them. You can check python code for Barnaxus, iirc.
    • This will make a realm-wide aura, without AI needs to understand it. However, I don't think hostile AI will understand what damage them, so this might lead to AI units try to heal themselves inside Aos si's territory and constantly get damaged.
    • Another drawback: large territory or huge number of units or the combination of both might slow late game.
     
  20. Linvega

    Linvega Chieftain

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    Hey guys, I have implemented the changes now! Thanks for the ideas and tips on how to do them.

    Damaging realm: To avoid computational overhead, I used the doWinter function from CvFaeries. Since this function already searches through all tiles to change them to snow anyway, making it additionally check for units and damaging them should add very little computation time. To avoid the AI trying to heal inside, enemy units also get a "frozen" effect which works similar to the poisoned effect, but it vanishes immediately/after a few turns(50% chance) instead of the unit needing to heal up fully. The damage is very low per turn (~2%, while the Citadel does ~20%), but it racks up and you get it right off the bat without needing to build anything for it, so I don't think it's too weak.

    Teleportation: I replicated the effect of the manes for the faeries, but it has one significant drawback: onUnitKilled only gets the unit that died and the player that attacked it, but not the unit that attacked it. This means I can't check for promotions or unit types. So now, as long as your leader has the hunter trait, every unit creates slaves, while I'd prefer for only recon units to get it. I reduced the chance to 30% to balance that off for now, maybe I'll even reduce that further.

    I also adjusted some values, so to recap the winter court does now:
    - give fallow, which most importantly allows you employ lots of specialists, but you can't grow your cities with food
    -damages enemy units in your terrain slightly and keeps them from healing
    -gives fishing boats +2 hammer +3 gold(for a total of 2 hammers and 5 gold), making the coast more appealing(I slightly adjusted the gold yield so the coast is still appealing even with towns in mind, which give 3 hammer and 3 gold)
    -strengthens your units compared to the summer cour by 10% (-5% versus -15%), but lose the extra healing the summer court gets(they originally were 15% stronger, but I adjusted that value because of the now damaging realm)
    - -75% trade value compared to the summer courts -33%
    -slightly increases maintenance compared to summer court(0% versus -10%)
    - allows your slaves to cast winterfeast if the city they're in has no angry citizens

    Cairn does now:
    -Hunter Trait:
    -Buffs your recon units by 10%
    -Allows all units to create slaves with 30% chance in your capital
    -Char Trait

    I'm very happy with these changes for now. The only thing I still have in mind is giving the faction which the units were "stolen" from changelings in their capital, which would add some more flavour. However, since Cairn/the winter court is unique enough for now and I have no idea what these changelings are supposed to do, I won't do anything about that for now.

    I'll upload these changes to the faeries in the next days so that people who are interested can download them. I'd be very happy if they'd get incorporated into Xtended someday even if only partially and/or heavily adjusted, but that's obviously your decision, esvath (well, and the communities'). For the record, I also wouldn't mind if you'd change names of abilities/promotions/traits/etc. if everyone thinks they sound stupid, I'm more interested in the mechanics anyway.
     

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