Civilization V Catch-All

Strangeblades wrote:

Hi. I'm looking to get some sweet Civ 5 action. I have sexy girls and boys - whatever it is you are into.

Also, this is not spam.

So, I've played HOI3, EU3 and a couple other big-time grand stratz. What difficulty should I be playing on in Civ. 5?

Oh, is there a good post-apocalyptic mod?

If you're new to Civ, I strongly recommend a couple games singleplayer on Chieftain before you jump in just to get acquainted. Also, do you have Gods and Kings? Because everyone on the game has to either have it or not.

Also, the difficulty doesn't have to match everyone else in the game. Running a game right now where I'm on Prince, but there are Warlord players, and I don't know what Itsatrap is playing on - I think he may have skipped straight up to Intangible Overlord or something. It's a great way to learn (especially if your group is mostly playing it an us-against-the-AI sort of style rather than against-each-other).

momgamer wrote:
Strangeblades wrote:

Hi. I'm looking to get some sweet Civ 5 action. I have sexy girls and boys - whatever it is you are into.

Also, this is not spam.

So, I've played HOI3, EU3 and a couple other big-time grand stratz. What difficulty should I be playing on in Civ. 5?

Oh, is there a good post-apocalyptic mod?

If you're new to Civ, I strongly recommend a couple games singleplayer on Chieftain before you jump in just to get acquainted. Also, do you have Gods and Kings? Because everyone on the game has to either have it or not.

Also, the difficulty doesn't have to match everyone else in the game. Running a game right now where I'm on Prince, but there are Warlord players, and I don't know what Itsatrap is playing on - I think he may have skipped straight up to Intangible Overlord or something. It's a great way to learn (especially if your group is mostly playing it an us-against-the-AI sort of style rather than against-each-other).

Thanks for the information. Since I'm a crudgy old man I tend to play alone. So, I'll keep doing that.

Quick skimmer question: now that I've installed Gods & Kings, is there an option somewhere to play a game without it?

I've got a free Steam code for Civ V for the first tagged GWJer that PMs me.

Ack! Civilization is stealing all my time! Bad Civilization! Bad!

Oh who am I kidding, I can't stay mad at you. What's that you say? Just one more turn? Oh, alright, but just one more though ok?!?

Even when the match I'm playing is a complete mess and I know I'm going to lose, I can't stop clicking... clicking... clicking. This game is such crack, I remember now why I swore it off forever back in 1997.

And the Maya are triumphant! I also nuked my enemies in 2012 for the extra achievement. That was fun... now... which Civilization next........

With the sale going on, I decided to download the demo. I started it, got really interested, then was forced to stop. The game told me that the demo was over. I closed the game and saw that 90 minutes had gone away.

I either profoundly don't want the full game or want it way too much. It's hard to tell.

I was able to buy Gods and Kings for 75% off, having stopped playing civ months and months ago...the game ate my whole day today...and that's not a complaint! I've gotten so tired of FPS's, thanks valve for reminding me of this awesome game! It's just what the doctor ordered to get me out of my gamer funk.

Yeah, I thought FTL was good at eating my time! Since installing the G&K pack, i've lost over 30 hours in just a few days.

Got the yoink achievement. That was actually pretty tough. Had to flick it over to Deity difficulty just so a civ state would build 15 units. Then on top of that I needed 2400 to do the diplomatic marriage. Sheesh!

I'm finding most of my games are ending with a rocket ship to outer space. It seems the easiest path for me. May need to try the cultural route again.

Considering I've been playing some version of Civ or other for 20 years I'm amazed I suck so much at it.

Science. Science is your answer. Also, be nice to your enemies. Right up until the point where you run a tank over their back.

The thing is, it's totally OK to suck at Civ: playing on lower difficulty levels and letting the game just happen to you is a totally viable play style.

In some ways doing that feels "truer" to how real civilizations develop - a series of mistakes and coincidences rather than some master plan to optimize every element of the civilization's trajectory

And getting beaten to a wonder, then totally bringing down the military foot to wipe out their city and take the wonder for yourself.

I recently bought a Lenovo Yoga 13, which is running the typical ultrabook i5 ULV processor (like the Surface Pro, etc). I had no idea Civ V had a Win 8 touch interface. It prompts you when you first load the game up. Also surprisingly, at least for the first hour or so of game, using conservative graphics settings, it runs and works really well on this ultrabook in touch mode. I can just flip the Yoga into tablet/easel mode and sit it in the lap and let the time roll on by as I play. I will be great for air travel, too.

Kinda happy.

Yeah, saw that Windows 8 option was added. Not sure how much it differs from just playing on a touch screen. I assume it uses the gesters of the new OS, like zooming and such.

Otherwise I recently finished my first multiplayer game of Civ V. As much as I enjoy playing the game, it was a blast having someone else in the game to discuss and strategize with (we played a team against the comptuer). Might have to try to drag some more people into some multiplayer games, co-op or competitive, though it is a multinight affair to be sure.

Mantid wrote:

Yeah, saw that Windows 8 option was added. Not sure how much it differs from just playing on a touch screen. I assume it uses the gesters of the new OS, like zooming and such.

Pretty much the standard stuff from Win 8. Two finger swipe to scroll around the map, pinch to zoom, etc. Also if you touch something and hold, it will get you hoover text. And a few others I can't remember.

But it's very playable. Stuff about everything has a big enough touch area to work. And the way this Yoga flips around, it's great for the lap.

I decided to support the new project of Civ 5's lead designer, Jon Shafer, after hearing about it on the Goodjer podcast. So naturally I'm now getting buried in Kickstarter updates But for a change these are actually rather interesting!

Why am I posting this here? Because in his update of 13 February Jon has commented in detail on the design decisions he made in Civ 5, and how he wants to take that experience to his new game At The Gates. And he doesn't hold back. It's a must-read for all Civ fans.

Jon Shafer wrote:

On Diplomacy
In Civ 5, you might have been lifelong allies with a leader, but once you enter the late-game he has no qualms backstabbing you in order to win. With this being the case, what's the point of investing in relationships at all?

By no means should AI leaders be completely predictable. However, they do need a clear rhyme and reason behind their actions. The computer opponents in Civ 5 were completely enslaved to their gameplay situation, and as a result they appeared random and very little of their personalities shone through.

On AI
Civ 5's AI was a beautiful mesh of interwoven systems, and even included the ability to record virtually everything to a massive log file. Unfortunately, my enjoyment of building caused me to fall in love with the design rather than its actual impact. I was very proud of my code. But it really wasn't very good.

What many people don't know about AI programming is that one of the greatest challenges is getting your artificial players to actually do what you think you're making them do! The AI code in a big strategy game is typically so complex that you end up with a variety of pieces that either don't function as expected, or worse, don't do anything.

Another problem with my AI was the randomness, which is something I've already talked about at length. The computer opponents were weighted towards a variety of possibilities, with a healthy serving of RNG (random number generator) on the side. This meant they floated from one "strategy" to another without any real cohesion behind those decisions. This approach is nice in theory, but if you want a strong AI there are times when you need to force it to behave in very specific manner.

On Resources
In Civ 5, players ended up with easy access to a bit of every resource and there was almost no reason to trade. In the real world, swapping goods is worthwhile because of the effects of supply and demand. In Civ 5 there was almost no demand since you could be virtually self-sufficient. This will be completely different in ATG, where the threat of critical shortages will always be right around the corner, and bringing in much-needed resources via trade might very well be necessary for survival.

My removal of the health system in Civ 5 also had repercussions elsewhere. This greatly reduced the value of non-strategic resources (like wheat), and in retrospect it's clear that I didn't manage to fill that void with something else. ATG has far fewer resource types than Civ 5, but the ones which do exist are all very important. The map is absolutely vital in a 4X game, and that needs to be the case for everything on it as well. If you see something on a tile and think it's not a big deal, that is a flaw that needs to be fixed.

Another issue with the Civ 5 resources system was that the difference between having 2 and 5 Swordsmen isn't really a big deal compared with the possibility of not having any Swordsmen. If I were able to go back and change the design I probably would have resources show up in more limited quantities and make the units and buildings they unlock much more unique and powerful.

On Economics
My intention with the global happiness mechanic was to make it possible for smaller empires to compete with much larger ones. The problem was that a global metric butts heads with the natural cadence of the entire genre. I mean, the second X in 4X stands for "expansion" for crying out loud! I lost sight of this as I pursued other objectives.

On Combat
This was a model very much inspired by the old wargame Panzer General. On the whole, I would say that the combat mechanics are indeed better in Civ 5 than in any other entry in the series. But as is the theme of this article, there's a downside to consider as well.

One of the biggest challenges unearthed by 1UPT was writing a competent combat AI. I wasn't the one who developed this particular AI subsystem, and the member of the team who was tasked with this did a great job of making lemonade out of the design lemons I'd given him. Needless to say, programming an AI which can effectively maneuver dozens of units around in extremely tactically-confined spaces is incredibly difficult.

The reason why this wasn't an issue in Panzer General was that their AI didn't actually need to do anything. It was always on the defensive, and a large part of that game was simply solving the "puzzle" of how to best crack open enemy strongholds. It was plenty sufficient if your opponents simply ordered a single tank to stir up some trouble every so often.

What made Panzer General fun was you blitzkrieg-ing through Europe while your enemies quickly and dramatically fell before your might. However, in a Civ game, the AI has to be capable of launching full-scale invasions, sometimes on different landmasses. Needless to say, we're talking about a challenge on completely different scale.

Speaking of scale, another significant issue with 1UPT was that the maps wasn't really suited for it. The joy of Panzer General was pulling off clever maneuvers and secretly encircling your helpless enemies. Unfortunately, in Civ 5 nasty bottlenecks aren't uncommon and this tempers much of the natural value added by 1UPT. Ultimately, there just wasn't enough room to do the fun part.

To address this, I could have done something crazy like added sub-tiles to the existing grid. I really don't think this would have been a good idea though, as the whole point in having a tiles is that everything happens on the same playing field, which makes it very easy to tell what's going on. Once you start muddying the waters of what goes where, you lose that clarity and mechanical chunkiness tiles offer. And at that point, you might as well just get rid of them entirely.

Speculation aside, the reality was that the congestion caused by 1UPT also impacted other parts of the game. In every prior Civ title it was no problem to have ten, fifty or even a thousand units under your control. Sure, larger numbers meant more to manage, but hotkeys and UI conveniences could alleviate much of the problem. But in Civ 5, every unit needed its own tile, and that meant the map filled up pretty quickly.

To address this, I slowed the rate of production, which in turn led to more waiting around for buckets to fill up. For pacing reasons, in the early game I might have wanted players to be training new units every 4 turns. But this was impossible, because the map would have then become covered in Warriors by the end of the classical era. And once the map fills up too much, even warfare stops being fun.

So is there a way to make 1UPT really work in a Civ game? Perhaps. The key is the map. Is there enough of room to stash units freely and slide them around each other? If so, then yes, you can do it. For this to be possible, I'd think you would have to increase the maximum map size by at least four times. You'd probably also want to alter the map generation logic to make bottlenecks larger and less common. Of course, making the world that much bigger would introduce a whole new set of challenges!

In fact, there were technical reasons this wasn't really feasible - our engine was already pushing up against the capabilities of modern computer hardware. Drawing that many small doo-dads on a screen is really expensive, trust me. Well, unless you make your game 2D, like ATG!

I snipped the most interesting parts (mainly his own criticisms) on Civ 5, but I really recommend reading the entire e-mail.

I got gifted this during the winter sale and I just got to starting it last night (bad idea btw) and I am very lost lol

This is what I get for not playing a Civ game since like Civ 2 lol

Despite the game's problems, it has wound up becoming my favorite of the Civ franchise, which is no easy feat after how fantastic Civ 4 was once Beyond the Sword polished it up. I am hopeful that perhaps Civ 6 could take the 1UPT concept and push it and the AI further to resolve the issues it introduced. I just know that, after playing this, I'd have a hard time going back to Stacks of Doom, unless Civ 6 were to implement support limits like EU3 and CK2 use to keep stacks somewhat limited (this has had more impact in EU3 than in CK2, in my experience).

That was a really interesting piece, dejanzie. Thanks for posting that excerpt.

I can't articulate exactly what's different, but I find myself enjoying the game now, when I absolutely did not like it at launch time. However, I still find the no-stacking bit to be an annoyance, especially with non-combat units. Espionage feels anemic compared to Civ4.

I'm having the same experience as Quintin. Absolutely hated Civ 5 when it came out. Put in maybe a few hours around launch and was fundamentally repulsed by it. I had a hankering for some Civ about a week ago and fired it up and gave it a chance, and I've really been enjoying it.

Diplomacy though, ugh.

Some of the mods are pretty cool -- in particular, the Faerun mod (AD&D Forgotten Realms) is an interesting take, but these mods for me have given this game new life for me..

For the uninitiated, just go to the mods section of the menu screen and, if its through steam, you can subscribe from there, making it really easy to mod the game.

So, I picked up the gold pack today, since it's 75% off (12.49 USD) for 18 more hours. It looks like everything for Civ V is on sale

If only there was more of it to buy

omnipherous wrote:

If only there was more of it to buy :-D

Or is there? :wink:

Finished my French playthrough on Prince. Decided to do a Domination only game, as I wanted to get an in-depth feel for how combat and war play out now after the patches and expansion.

Several things in the game continue to frustrate. Without stacks, large scale troops movement becomes tedious. The UI, while very slick, hides information that'd be useful to me. Like, what's the defense bonus from this tile here compared to that tile there? I see an enemy unit and want to bring up its Civipedia page, but there's no way to do that so I have to search manually. I use fortify all the time but it's hidden off the main UI in a sub-menu. I can build a unit if there's already a unit in this city, but I can't purchase a unit. IMAGE(http://rps.net/QS/Images/Smilies/boggled.gif) Presumably this is because purchased units will appear with no moves left, one of the many awkward bits that result from the ban on stacks.

This game went far better than my last, where I played Austria and got crushed between two giant civs at the end. Instead the French culture allowed me to spread out my border super quickly. My mid-game special units were perfectly suited to my preferred era for waging war. This was the first game I wasn't able to found a religion though. I had no idea there was a max number based on the player count. Ah well. Obviously I managed anyway. Domination victory in year 2031.

IMAGE(http://cloud.steampowered.com/ugc/920130273921464484/4406D046BF63B24CCE9EC71C59AE90329EDAD713/)