Brad Wardell's views about technology, politics, religion, world affairs, and all sorts of politically incorrect topics.

Most of the excitement in the Elemental universe has been about Fallen Enchantress.  But War of Magic continues to move forward too, albeit in a different direction.

image

There’s a lot of changes in v1.3 to gameplay that I’ll talk about later but one change that I’m working on is the scaling of costs of things in terms of population.

As many people know, in “the real world” it’s one thing to find one specialist nearby for your company but it gets progressively more difficult to find more and more. This happens to work out as a nice game mechanic because in v1.3, the cost of a study, workshop, archivist, or anything else that has no duplicate limit will slowly get more expensive in terms of personnel cost.

Your first study will only cost 1 (instead of 5). Your second one will cost 2. Your third one a bit more and so on.  This helps get the game moving early on but also makes it hard to get the crazy, out of control, late game scaling that has been typical. It also makes bigger cities more important because higher level settlements are the ones with the best resource multiplying improvements.


Comments (Page 1)
on May 24, 2011

Your first study will only cost 1 (instead of 5). Your second one will cost 2. Your third one a bit more and so on. This helps get the game moving early on but also makes it hard to get the crazy, out of control, late game scaling that has been typical. It also makes bigger cities more important because higher level settlements are the ones with the best resource multiplying improvements.

Is there any way we can get localized populations as well? While I think this is a really good change, low level cities will still be able to leech population from the rest of the civilization under the current global population system. In my mind, it would be cool if population was both local and there existed a unit capable of "moving" population.

on May 24, 2011

An interesting idea.  Unfortunately, probably beyond the scope of what I can do in v1.3.

on May 24, 2011

Maybe one way to handle the leaching would be an influence "reducing" building perhaps?

 

Unsure what would be the best way to do this.

 

 

on May 24, 2011



Your first study will only cost 1 (instead of 5). Your second one will cost 2. Your third one a bit more and so on.  This helps get the game moving early on but also makes it hard to get the crazy, out of control, late game scaling that has been typical. It also makes bigger cities more important because higher level settlements are the ones with the best resource multiplying improvements.

I like this idea cuz it addresses to issues for me 1) the monotony of making 20 studies in every city and 2) city spam.

P.S. Welcome back Frogboy... I hope that bone ogre wasn't too rough on you.  Now you're back with us bone ogres.

 

on May 24, 2011

Frogboy
An interesting idea. Unfortunately, probably beyond the scope of what I can do in v1.3.

Perhaps, but I think it would be worth the effort since there is little that keeps large cities from supporting large amounts of smaller cities. Let's look at a good example from 1.2. Currently, if I have one city with 300 population, I can have support 60 studies at 5 population. Now, let's consider a gradual increase of 1 per study. The same 300 population city could support 24 studies instead of 60. Thus, one 1200 population city could support 24 studies, archivists, and workshops as well as 25 12 size units across any number of cities.

on May 24, 2011

This makes sense.  Is there also going to be a change in how many buildings I need of something to make a noticeable difference?  Seems like a million tech buildings is needed by late game.  Not very satisfyingly to have to keep building the same thing over again to get a decent result.  I would fill up my starting cities queue for constructing buildings early in game and not ever catch up.  One hut or archive after another for eternity. 

on May 24, 2011

Nice this fixes several different issues at the same time.

on May 24, 2011

Wrong direction!

This is going to make city spam and monotony even worse because you will want many more small cities so that you can take advantage of the cheap producing buildings that you can create at each one. This choice will make cities more monotonous because you will want to spread out your generic production buildings among many cities rather than having cities specialize! Do the math and (given the numbers you are throwing out) you will find much better ROI for building production buildings in many different cities and having no resource boosting buildings than in specializing a city and having % boosts. Furthermore this move in no way models the real world. In the real world finding specialists is related to LOCAL populations, local populations have no effect in elemental. Therefore you provide the user with the utterly counterintuitive idea that finding 4 specialists of a given field in a large city with hundreds of people is HARDER than finding 3 specialists of a given field in some podunk little village with only a dozen people living in it.

on May 24, 2011

Sarudak
Wrong direction!

This is going to make city spam and monotony even worse because you will want many more small cities so that you can take advantage of the cheap producing buildings that you can create at each one. This choice will make cities more monotonous because you will want to spread out your generic production buildings among many cities rather than having cities specialize! Do the math and (given the numbers you are throwing out) you will find much better ROI for building production buildings in many different cities and having no resource boosting buildings than in specializing a city and having % boosts. Furthermore this move in no way models the real world. In the real world finding specialists is related to LOCAL populations, local populations have no effect in elemental. Therefore you provide the user with the utterly counterintuitive idea that finding 4 specialists of a given field in a large city with hundreds of people is HARDER than finding 3 specialists of a given field in some podunk little village with only a dozen people living in it.

Where did they say the effect was localized? You seem to be needing your medication. Settle down there spazoid. Now mind you they didn't say they were doing this globally, but its implied to be a global cost by frog's response.

on May 24, 2011

Sarudak
Wrong direction!

This is going to make city spam and monotony even worse because you will want many more small cities so that you can take advantage of the cheap producing buildings that you can create at each one. This choice will make cities more monotonous because you will want to spread out your generic production buildings among many cities rather than having cities specialize! Do the math and (given the numbers you are throwing out) you will find much better ROI for building production buildings in many different cities and having no resource boosting buildings than in specializing a city and having % boosts. Furthermore this move in no way models the real world. In the real world finding specialists is related to LOCAL populations, local populations have no effect in elemental. Therefore you provide the user with the utterly counterintuitive idea that finding 4 specialists of a given field in a large city with hundreds of people is HARDER than finding 3 specialists of a given field in some podunk little village with only a dozen people living in it.

1. Local specialists do matter because the price increases locally not globally because that's where the shortage is.

2. City spam is hardly the biggest problem in the game, it arguably doesn't even exist anymore because of the 1.1 patch. I know I don't use it and I handily beat medium maps in 200 turns. Having more then 5-6 cities is just a pain, because they require so much micromanagement. Sure more cities would help but at end game each of my cities is pumping out a couple hundred of whatever resource it is specialized in, so I'm not hurting for tech or gold.

3. If done probably this might actually fix several more pressing problems like tech spam and resource insignificance. I usually have around 5 workshops in my kingdom. 5! I also never specialize in gold because I only run out when buying hero equipment. With increasing building costs maybe I will be forced to actually build workshops and hoard gold instead of just spamming tech places, which comprise 90% of my buildings. Right now build time is the only constraint on building improvements because they are so dirt cheap. I mean specializing cities is kinda a joke when only tech matters, and maybe magic tech if your into that.

4. If city spam is such a huge issue with you then this patch will actually help because as I said above the only reason it might work is because buildings are so cheap that only build time constrains how many libraries you can build, and only tech matters. Thus more cities can always out produce fewer cities.

I applaud Frogboy and his team for coming up with such a innovative solution. It fills me with hope for the future of WoM.

on May 25, 2011

This was posted in the irc channel before, note that the increased cost is civ-wide.

 

16:30 <Frogboy|Coding> I'm in the process of implementing a new cost system for personnel
16:30 <Kadrium> Personnel meaning..?
16:32 <Frogboy|Coding> Your first study will cost 1 person
16:32 <Frogboy|Coding> Your second one will cost 2
16:32 <Frogboy|Coding> Your third one will cost 3
16:32 <Frogboy|Coding> and so on
16:32 <Kadrium> Ahh, you mean the population usage for improvements?
16:32 <Frogboy|Coding> Yea
16:32 <Frogboy|Coding> Gets things moving faster early game.
16:32 <Frogboy|Coding> Keeps them from getting crazy later.
16:32 <Kadrium> Right, thats one issue I've had since the improvements changed to be re-buildable.
16:33 <Kadrium> Spamming tech research is essentially auto-win
16:34 <Kadrium> is that cost going to be per city or per improvement?
16:34 <Kadrium> that is, if you build 10 studies in one city, does your first study in a new city cost 11 population?
16:35 <Frogboy|Coding> per improvement.
16:36 <Frogboy|Coding> civ wide
16:36 <Frogboy|Coding> So more cities = pain.
16:36 <Frogboy|Coding> better to concentrate.
16:36 <Kadrium> That's probably best, I suppose.
16:37 <Kadrium> Any thoughts about tech or faction bonuses to the population consumption?
16:38 <Kadrium> I'd be concerned that there'd be a bit of a 'critical mass' where you will essentially reach a soft cap of reasonably sustainable building counts
16:38 <Frogboy|Coding> Eventually.
16:39 <Frogboy|Coding> Yea, I'm going to have it be N^0.75 rather than N for that reason.

on May 25, 2011

Sorry, but this idea still seems like a stop-gap measure rather than a solution to me.

The game mechanics should be looked at first - then enhancements to the application of the mechanics should follow. Not the other way around.

Fixing the tech tree should be number 1 priority before figuring out how to apply the current broken model in a slightly better fashion. This won't fix or even address the core issues in any meaningful way.

on May 25, 2011

Sarudak
Wrong direction!

This is going to make city spam and monotony even worse because you will want many more small cities so that you can take advantage of the cheap producing buildings that you can create at each one.

From the IRC transcript, it seems that the population cost is civ wide and not city wide. So there IS an interest in specializing cities instead of spamming monotonous cities.

on May 25, 2011

>>> Most of the excitement in the Elemental universe has been about Fallen Enchantress.  But War of Magic continues to move forward too, albeit in a different direction.

Are you saying that this mechanic is not being implemented in FE, but only in WoM? Just curious, that would be interesting. I'm looking forward to see how this change will work out, it surely looks promising! I do believe, however, that making more incentives for fewer cities (and disincentives for many, fewer cities) needs consideration.

dragoaskani

 You seem to be needing your medication. Settle down there spazoid.

Remarks like these make it really difficult for people like me to sort through your posts for possible constructive feedback. In general, they give me a disincentive to read and actively partake in these forums. Do you think you might just be able to say what you want without the superflous venom?

on May 25, 2011

forums go boom double post sorry

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