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

I'm enjoying my time back on Galactic Civilizations.   The team is working on lots of neat things for the upcoming version 2.0 update which is due this month.

Here are a few highlights:

Administrators

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There's a new resource called administrators.  Your capital world provides N of them where N is based on the size of the map.  Building a starbase consumes one.  You can get more by researching government related techs but that means you're not researching weapons or economy techs. 

The practical effect is that it takes a little pressure off the idea that you have to spam out starbases and also gives some advantages to smaller empires who can now choose to use their starbases to improve morale and productivity in their home systems.

 

Better diplomacy

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When I play other games, I tend to cheese.  There have been patches made for games over the years to counter some of my cheese.  There's plenty of diplomacy cheese in GalCiv also and thanks to player feedback, I was able to b-line my way to it.

But it wasn't just cheese that I wanted to improve on.  I wanted the AI to do more trading and less "give me stuff please". So I worked on the diplomatic system to work harder on coming up with trades.  It'll probably be one of the first things players notice.  More AI talk with more interesting trades.

 

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One new system I spent some time on was the concept of redlining. 

When I inevitable have to work on contracts in my "day job" at Stardock/Mohawk/Oxide I do what is called redlining.  That is where I make marks on a proposal as to why I think we should pass on it or cross out things that won't work for us.

One of the first things I did when cheesing GalCiv was to use the old technique of manipulating the aliens to do things that weren't in their best interests.  Now, to be fair, most people don't do this kind of thing but once you do it, it's hard not to do it.

So in response, I implemented a redlining system that you code-geeks might find interesting:

I noticed that the game passes around the trade offer a lot:

VOID IAIOpponent::AppraiseTradeOffer(CDiplomacySystem::ActiveTradeInfo* pTradeOffer, CDiplomacySystem::ActiveTradeInfo* pOtherSideTradeOffer, ObjectID forPlayerID, ObjectID otherPlayerID)

See the pTradeOffer there?  It was the full detail of what was being offered and the AI looks at it in lots and lots of different ways.

So what I did is add a vector of redlines to it.  That is, the AI can be evaluating an offer and say "Hey, this tech is too valuable" or "Those guys are too tough" and add that redline to the trade offer.

Then, when it gets back to you, you see why they rejected it.  And in the process of implementing it, I went ahead and got rid of some of the things I was exploiting like how easy it was to get other people to do your dirty work (you can still do it but you  need to have a lot of persuasive ability or have a much better deal or both).

UI: This will be controversial

I don't expect this next change to be universally loved and I haven't gotten approval yet from the GalCiv III lead designer, Paul Boyer to check this in. 

But anyway, I really really REALLY hate the ship list thing.  That is, when I go to pick a ship to build, it gets filled with tons of auto-generated ship designs.  None of the filter options work for me (i.e. I don't like them).

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So instead, what I did was make it so that when you first load up the game, only your favored ships are shown and the other ones are folded up.  Then I made it so that if you click on the label (like Beam Ships) it'll unfold the other ships.   

Now, the trickier thing I had to do was when designing a ship.  I wanted my ships that I designed to automatically show up in the favored list.  It was annoying to design a ship and then have to go look for it.

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So now, when I design a ship and save it (in this case, I'll call it the Intrepid class).

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Ironically, this proved a lot tougher than you'd think because the ship design screen deals primarily with saving files where as the ship build list actually deals with UI handles (which don't exist when you design a ship since you haven't added that ship to a listbox list yet).

But it's done.

There's a lot of other stuff going into 2.0.  Today I'm working on late game AI stuff.

This free update is due this month.  Stay tuned!


Comments (Page 5)
on Jan 17, 2017

Russia Canada US china Brazil Australia India are the seven largest countries of the world.

China India us Indonesia Brazil Pakistan Nigeria are the most populated.

Quatar Luxemburg Singapore norway Brunei daruselum Hong Kong us are the richest.

China Germany Japan India south Korea Mexico Taiwan are the seven top manufacturers.

South Korea Germany sweden finland France Greece Estonia. Are the most scientific. 

Only us as a big country as one of the richest. Only China and India Brazil and us was both one of the biggest and most populated. Only China and India are top manufacturers. 

My point I looked it up it sounds like there is a point in being tall. There would also be a point in balancing population, and size. I also noticed no one country on top in everything. I'm not seeing limiting starbases as being a. Solution to being tall. Maybe instead having finishing numbers as you have more planets would work better. When are we going to have a post on tall vs. wide. There are more tall winners than there are wide. In science there are no wide.

on Jan 17, 2017

djvandebrake

In counterpoint to what others typed... my understanding from this post is that 2.0 is, in fact, Crusade. I don't know whether that older post has been updated or if it is old info however...

Given that standard version numbering is actually a good thing, still, it's Brad's game; he gets to call it whatever he wants.  He even gets to change the rules for what it is called if he wants.  He has, in later posts, clearly differentiated between the releases. Make of that what you will.  I don't think we know any longer what version number Crusades is going to be.  

And how does all of this fit in a world where I am anxiously waiting for Nougat to drop on my phone?  

on Jan 17, 2017

Crusades is the second expansion. Replacement for Mercs. What I've been wondering is that we were promised an expansion, and a expand alone this year are theyboth the same thing, or are we getting two different games.

on Jan 18, 2017

admiralWillyWilber

Russia Canada US china Brazil Australia India are the seven largest countries of the world.

China India us Indonesia Brazil Pakistan Nigeria are the most populated.

Quatar Luxemburg Singapore norway Brunei daruselum Hong Kong us are the richest.

China Germany Japan India south Korea Mexico Taiwan are the seven top manufacturers.

South Korea Germany sweden finland France Greece Estonia. Are the most scientific. 

Only us as a big country as one of the richest. Only China and India Brazil and us was both one of the biggest and most populated. Only China and India are top manufacturers. 

My point I looked it up it sounds like there is a point in being tall. There would also be a point in balancing population, and size. I also noticed no one country on top in everything. I'm not seeing limiting starbases as being a. Solution to being tall. Maybe instead having finishing numbers as you have more planets would work better. When are we going to have a post on tall vs. wide. There are more tall winners than there are wide. In science there are no wide.

 

I don't necessarily think these correlations are the final answer. You also have to look at cultural elements, political and economic policy, diplomacy, etc. For example, the US is one of the largest but the federal system makes it easier to manage by breaking it down into a series of smaller affiliated states. This makes administration a lot easier than one large superstate - which is probably why most countries move towards federalist models now.

Or looking at China and India as manufacturers - this is a direct consequence of having a large population and (due to historic policies) not as much technological development. But as their tech levels increase, the balance of labor to capital decreases, wages rise, and they will start to approach world average for manufacturing.

In game terms, either wide or tall should be able to excel at anything. But the game mechanics will affect which might be better suited for certain things.

on Jan 18, 2017

From what we have seen until now, there is no reason to believe that administration will change anything

concerning wide/tall empire, since it is a hardcap to starbases only.

I would like if colonies would also require administration, this would mean a tall empire would be able to

build more starbases, and somwhat close the gap.

on Jan 18, 2017

mortili

I would like if colonies would also require administration

Yeah. And shipyards as well, plus going over the (soft) admin cap = ineffectiveness, maluses to production and research, higher maintenance...

on Jan 18, 2017

lyssailcor


Quoting tilyas89,

I do love AI updates and new features. However, I'm not finding the motivation play many games anymore. Its the damn end game mop up phase that always looms over my head. At a certain point I just start snowballing and would like to see some endgame challenges such as remaining empires banding together against greater threats, be they you or whoever is in first. Stardock's the only ppl I trust with AI but if late game doesn't become appealing, I'm afraid I'm done with strategy games for good. 



MOO 2 did a good job with the Antarans to prevent end game mopup. Perhaps GC III should become an option to like "Dread Lord appearance chance x% beginning from turn y". Or (and? ) one of my other proposals from my reply #7 to this thread. Or something else



The rifts feature once actually put in place will be this.           oh you wanted to go to that planet?   sorry it just fell into a spacial rift...    as did your huge fleet...      sucks to be yooooooouuu...

on Jan 18, 2017

jirkaesch


Quoting mortili,

I would like if colonies would also require administration



Yeah. And shipyards as well, plus going over the (soft) admin cap = ineffectiveness, maluses to production and research, higher maintenance...

 

I agree! I wish a developer would say whether that is being considered because a system like that would make more sense, imo.

on Jan 18, 2017

LongDeadFingers


Quoting jirkaesch,






Quoting mortili,



I would like if colonies would also require administration



Yeah. And shipyards as well, plus going over the (soft) admin cap = ineffectiveness, maluses to production and research, higher maintenance...



 

I agree! I wish a developer would say whether that is being considered because a system like that would make more sense, imo.

 

Wouldn't it be better to just eliminate the Starbase bonuses overlapping?  Why does a planet need 6 space malls in orbit?

But in any case, some limit is needed, every game just comes down to constructor spam to create as many star bases as possible.  It gets boring.

on Jan 18, 2017

The Admin patch is live folks! Go get yer admins!

on Jan 18, 2017

Just got it. thanks Larsenex

 

on Jan 19, 2017

tilyas89

I do love AI updates and new features. However, I'm not finding the motivation play many games anymore. Its the damn end game mop up phase that always looms over my head. At a certain point I just start snowballing and would like to see some endgame challenges such as remaining empires banding together against greater threats, be they you or whoever is in first. Stardock's the only ppl I trust with AI but if late game doesn't become appealing, I'm afraid I'm done with strategy games for good. 

 

I was thinking about the same thing.  Once AI realizes that it can't win all remaining civ should come together and declare war to stop incoming end to them, which would make perfect sense.

on Jan 20, 2017

I love the idea of the new updates. However it is causing havoc with all the mods I merged as well as work I have done on my own mods. I literally just got done getting v1.90 compatible with the changes I made. Now I see 2.0 coming out soon. Is there any way to list the files that are going to be changed? This way I can compare which files I need to adjust. 

on Jan 20, 2017

 

Highlighted files are the ones changed with the 2.0 beta opt-in.

on Jan 22, 2017

So can anyone tell me where I can see my administration value? I have 2.0 but the game is pretty much playing the same for me. (I never used multiple starbases per planet anyhow.) One difference is that I ran out of planets nearby early on so I was forced into a taller strategy than I am used to, but I still have a ton of relic/mining starbases out there. But I don't see my administrators on any screen.

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