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

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Sliders. Knobs. Checkboxes. Such is the spread-sheet roots of strategy games. Let's fix that.

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Going back 15 years to Galactic Civilizations I for Windows, players managed their economy like this:

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GalCiv I: Sliders.

 

In Galactic Civilizations I, you would set your tax rate. Your tax rate affected the approval rate on your planets.  You could then decide how much of your GDP the government would take control of with the spending slider.  From there, players would direct their civilization's output between Military, Social, and Research.

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In Galactic Civilizations III, we had changed it to the Production Wheel: Manufacturing, Wealth Generation, Research.

 

I actually don't have a problem with sliders to be honest.  But they have a serious user interface limitation: The more sliders you have, the more confusing the screen and the more difficult it is to communicate the results.

 

 

Let's talk about economics

Our economies are a lot more complicated than Money making, Research and Planet manufacturing and Fleet construction.  Obvious real-world examples would include food production, consumer goods,  social programs and international affairs.  In a space game, there are even priorities you might have: Mining, espionage, soldiers, Precursor archeology, and so on.  Imagine all that as sliders. Oye.

 

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What are Galactic Citizens?

Across your entire civilization, an individual of great potential will rise up and join your government.  When this happens you decide an area for he or she to specialize in.

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A new citizen has joined you. What will you do with them?

Now, there are some...provisos here that will make each game play a bit differently. 

  1. How often you get a free citizen is not dependent on the size of your civilization.  It is, by default, one citizen every 10 turns. So each citizen is pretty important. A 200 turn game will leave you with 20 natural citizens.  Use them wisely.
  2. The areas of specialization are based on what technology you have.  At the start of the game, if you are playing as the Terran Alliance, your options are a Leader or a Commander.
  3. You can choose to keep them safe in your capital providing a global bonus (great for large empires) or you can send them to a specific planet to really boost that planet's production in a given area (great for small empires) but also makes them vulnerable if they are assassinated or the planet is invaded (once they settle, they're not leaving).
  4. They level up over time. Thus, the order in which you specialize them matters.

 

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The govern screen with some citizens there. Leaders act as wild cards and can be placed in any category.

 

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Citizens can also be sent to planets to greatly boost it in a specific area.

 

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Citizens can't teleport. When sent to a planet, a VIP transport takes them from your capital world to the planet in question.

 

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Worried about micro-management? Don't. We also include easy ways to move citizens from your capital to your empire if necessary.

 

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Not just icons. Each citizen has a name and where they're from and a picture (and yea, we do this for all 12 races, Drengin females...you do not want to attend their march).

 

 

Citizen Specialties (so far)

 

 

Specialization

Strategic Benefit

Tactical Benefit

Special

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Leader

Provides 3% boost to target civilization priority.

Cannot leave the capital.

Can be moved around to any priority category.

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Administrator

Reduces all colony maint by 3%

Reduces target planet’s maintenance by 25%.

Increases administration resource by 1 plus 10%.

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General

Improves global planetary resistance by 3%.

Provides 5 legions to target planet for defense.

Can be converted into an invasion transport holding the General and his legions.

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Commander

Improves global starship HP by 3%

Increases planetary defense of orbiting ships by 25%.

Can be converted to a Flag Ship that is added to a target fleet to give it a combat boost.

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Spy

Improves global security by 3%

Can be sent to eliminate a spy on a planet.

Can be assigned missions targeting foreign powers.

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Worker

Increases global manufacturing by 3%

Can settle on a planet to boost its manufacturing by 25%

 

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Scientist

Increases global research by 3%

Can settle on a planet to boost its research by 25%

 

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Farmer

Increase global food production by 3%

Can settle on a planet boosting its food production by 25%

 

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Engineer

Increases global fleet production by 3%

Can settle on a planet boosting its fleet production by 25%

 

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Entrepreneur

Increases global wealth production by 3%

Can settle on a planet boosting its wealth production by 25%

 

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Celebrity

Provides a global 3% bonus to planetary goods and services.

Can settle on a planet providing a 25% boost to planetary goods and services.

 

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Diplomat

Provides a global 3% boost to influence.

Can settle on a planet and boost that planet’s influence by 25%.

Can be converted into an Emissary and sent to a target civilization boosting your relations.

 

 

 

A living civilization

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If you're a Galactic Civilizations player you might be thinking "This is going to require a lot of changes to existing balance."  And you would be right.  Take a very close look at the screenshot below.

 

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Still early game and lots of new resources to play with

 

Look at the top of the previous screenshot.  Notice how many resources there are?  Your citizens are your principle lever for deciding what matters (and what doesn't) in your civilization.  But how you will likely use your citizens will change from game to game because of the new resource system and their connection to what improvements you can build, what planets you can colonize, what your starbases can and can't do.  Resources accumulate (unlike in GalCiv III) and they result in a vibrant galaxy for your citizens to play in.

Next week: Resources!


Comments (Page 2)
on Feb 16, 2017

These changes are outstanding! Its an entirely NEW GAME! I am simply at a loss for words and very impressed. You are right of course, this idea is so good why didn't we think of it before? I like the idea of locked placement. They are a FINITE resource and must be managed wisely.  One question I have is this. ...Once you assign a citizen as a role can you 'hang on to him' till you have a place to put him? For example I may want to create a scientist early but I do not have a Ghost world yet. Can he 'hang out' at the capital not being utilized and still be moved later if I find a suitable planet to have him do his work on?  This entire post totally exceeds anything I was expecting! Thank you Stardock! 


Larsenex

 

on Feb 16, 2017

I think the answer to research not being so important late game is don't settle the citizen. So we are getting a beta. Also how does a spy relate to tech stealing, and savatoging buildings.

on Feb 16, 2017

Larsenex

These changes are outstanding! Its an entirely NEW GAME! I am simply at a loss for words and very impressed. You are right of course, this idea is so good why didn't we think of it before? I like the idea of locked placement. They are a FINITE resource and must be managed wisely.  One question I have is this. ...Once you assign a citizen as a role can you 'hang on to him' till you have a place to put him? For example I may want to create a scientist early but I do not have a Ghost world yet. Can he 'hang out' at the capital not being utilized and still be moved later if I find a suitable planet to have him do his work on?  This entire post totally exceeds anything I was expecting! Thank you Stardock! 




Larsenex

 

You don't have to immediately assign a specialist to a planet. If you leave him in the global pool, he will provide a smaller galaxy-wide bonus until he is settled on a world.  

on Feb 16, 2017

admiralWillyWilber

I think the answer to research not being so important late game is don't settle the citizen. So we are getting a beta. Also how does a spy relate to tech stealing, and savatoging buildings.

Stay tuned for more information on Spies  

on Feb 16, 2017

I hope research trees can be extended or research speed dramatically slowed so that late game feels less like the end of the game

on Feb 16, 2017

Is it just me or do Galactic Citizens remind anyone else of civ 4, 5, 6 great people when they settle in a city?

on Feb 16, 2017

They remind me more of Civ's "Specialists" than great people.

on Feb 16, 2017

I like the portraits (of the citizens). I love it. I gives us another 'mini game' within the game and that is a great thing. It also breathes life into each planet we decide to put someone on. With luck we can uh mod the portraits.

 

I would LOVE KRBJMS' uh sexy leader portraits as some of my scientists and leaders! The Terran's with an elite cadre of sexy scientists and diplomats, now that is collective bargaining! 

on Feb 16, 2017

I, uh, see in your enthusiasm to create this new mechanic, frogboy and co, there's a few more typos that'll need squishing.

Looking very impressive indeedy, nevertheless.

on Feb 16, 2017

Really nice to see this shaping up! A citizen renaming feature would be highly appreciated, just to touch on the worries of replier #8, a bit more. The main reasoning would be that we are allowed to make these weird ships, so in order to achieve thematical coherency, customization in this department, would make it easier to create that wholesome feeling of a streamlined universe. Just a thought, of course. External modding would no doubt cover this aspect quite handily, as also touched upon!

 

on Feb 16, 2017

Did anyone notice in the screenshot of the 'early game' that earth is at 100 happiness but the other 3 planets are at a 'revolting' 25>>>> 

on Feb 16, 2017

Can we Please have a slider for ship defense preference (like in GC2).  The BestDefense component type is very limiting as it can take a LONG time to get ships to change from one type to another and it always leaves you open to any type of two pronged attach

on Feb 16, 2017

How does the new civilization editor dictate portraits for these citizens and the special VIP ship?

on Feb 16, 2017

Looking for the change of resources , always hated that dumbed down model of ...
I have one of that resource and I could decide to build one tiny ship or the new death star with it ! (ideotic HOI, CIV, Stellaris and still Gal Civ model)

SO HOPE THAT sentence mean something ...
Resources accumulate (unlike in GalCiv III) and they result in a vibrant galaxy for your citizens to play in.

And we should need LUXURY resources, if we want to have more inhabitants on our planets ...
like 1-10 no resources are needed , 10-20 one luxury resource, 20-30 two different and so on ... 
so we would need mining/resources planets, if we want a real large home world

 

Best luck for the new ADDOn and count me in, as long as the game, will get away from a game for dummies (like MOO

on Feb 17, 2017

I really like what I'm seeing here. Looking forward to the Crusade!

Gauntlet03

How does the new civilization editor dictate portraits for these citizens and the special VIP ship?

Excellent question--hope there's an excellent answer.

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