#1 Re: Ruleset analysis and discussion » Constructive vs restrictive ruleset changes: Proposing national boni » 2021-11-17 09:30:15

The more "Per Nation" bonuses you provide, the better chance "small, well developed" nations will be able to compete with "large sprawling" ones.

Small Wonders are a good tool for this, since you only get one per nation.  If you can give good bonuses to a small handful of cities, it makes "more cities" comparatively less valuable.

#2 Re: Ruleset analysis and discussion » Changes to restrictinfra » 2021-08-05 21:22:11

I think that any system that has effects on the map should be visible on the map.  Borders are an existing mechanic that draws out regions of control and defines one tile as being controlled by one nation or another.  Since the slowness of militaries in enemy territory is due to some notion of the enemy still having "control" over that area, then it seems like it should apply just fine.  Visible zones of military dominance = good in my book.

What we need is a system where we can decide which nation "owns" what tiles based on the presence of troops.

#3 Re: Ruleset analysis and discussion » Changes to restrictinfra » 2021-08-05 20:06:20

Corbeau wrote:
Hans_Lemurson wrote:

Borders, in my opinion, are the best way to represent the territory that you have "control" over.  Not just the obvious fact of "that's literally what they represent",

Actually, this is very wrong. You can have a border 3 tiles away from the city, the city can be under siege with space between enemy and the border completely under enemy control, and the enemy would get restricted movement, not you.

Borders are an agreed construct. They lie where the two parties agree in peace. In war, they are meaningless.

but rather that they are visual!  Clear lines on the map that clearly say what land you have freedom and control in, and what land is hostile to you.

This is also very problematic. The only way to know if you control an area is having someone there. Hell, the only way to CONTROL an area is to have someone there. Nobody there - no control. You can say that Civ is an approximation and that borders actually represent something. I'd say that they SHOULD represent something, but they do it very poorly under current mechanic.

You're just repeating the point we all agree on: Borders as they currently exist are a poor way of representing things.

But "Automatically demarcated areas of the map that represent the land that a nation has control over" is a very useful concept for deciding freedom of movement and also access to resources.

"Drawing borders on the map" is an existing mechanic that already works with the restrict-infra rule.  So if we can simply change HOW the borders are drawn, then borders WILL be useful.

So now the question is, as it was before: How should borders work?
I think some system that dynamically calculates it based on the presence of troops in nearby tiles or cities would be a good idea.  Of course, the devil is in the details.  Let's discuss some details! Anybody have any ideas of how they'd like to see it work?

#4 Re: Ruleset analysis and discussion » Changes to restrictinfra » 2021-08-05 19:09:43

I think approach #1 would be the simplest, and would do a lot to prevent deep penetration.

#2 seems a bit harsh, and would be weird to have restrict-infra be applied within your own borders.  Enemy borders at least give a visual indication of where you can freely move.

Option #3 looks pretty complicated to me.  We already have the "zone of control" preventing movement of units past other units.  But this would instead have the presence of units invisibly make roads non-useable?  I get that it's a way to dynamically generate the restrict-infra rule based on the local conditions that produce it, but I don't like how it works invisibly.  (Also, it would do nothing to solve the "Lose an empire in a single turn" phenomenon, since you'd be able to travel freely through your conquests since all the enemy troops are probably dead.)

My Ideas:
Slow movement through enemy territory has historically been due to having to proceed cautiously due to risk of enemy ambush and from sabotage of infrastructure by enemy forces.  However, the way that the game works, small harassing forces that slow an enemy's advance are unfeasible.  Solitary units are vulnerable to bribery, and larger groups would just leave the city's defenses weakened.  A unit behind walls is worth three in the field.

Restrict-infra can thus be thought of as a way of abstracting this harassment (and other logistical difficulties armies suffer in hostile land) which can't be adequately modelled by the game's existing combat system.  I don't have any real gripes with it (other than maybe it penalizes movement over hills and forests too much).  The main problem seems to be that it doesn't work well enough.

The problem as I see it is not with Restrict-Infra but rather with Borders themselves.  This is why I'm in favor of option #1.  Borders, in my opinion, are the best way to represent the territory that you have "control" over.  Not just the obvious fact of "that's literally what they represent", but rather that they are visual!  Clear lines on the map that clearly say what land you have freedom and control in, and what land is hostile to you.

The problem with being able to penetrate much-too-deeply into enemy territory is that the borders themselves are failing.  This is because in the existing system, control of land is based almost completely on the age of the city.  I have participated in invasion-plans that meticulously mapped out cities based on their founding dates (seen by city ID) to chart a course with "favorable borders" where the conquered cities would gain you land right up to the walls of the next city on your list.  This largely bypassed the infrastructure restrictions that the rule was supposed to create, because the borders were behaving badly.

If borders were only changed at the end of the turn (easy), or could be altered by some reasonable dynamic process during a turn (harder, but more interesting), then I think the system would largely work as intended.

But how should borders work?  The current system of "land is owned by the oldest city" would still be broken, even if we go with Option #1 and delay border recalculation until the TC.

#5 Re: Ruleset analysis and discussion » Controversial idea: Get rid of allied transport » 2021-08-02 18:49:25

Yeah, that would solve it, but replace it with a bunch of player-side micromanagement.

Maybe a simpler version of that would just be "My boat, my rules".  When an allied unit enters a boat, you get full control of it.

That said, it might be un-fun to have another player use your marines to assault a city, and doesn't solve the issue of having to wait for your ally to load their units into your boat before the operation can begin.  But how would you solve that?  Allow allied transports to kidnap units from your cities?  Maybe a command where units will attempt to jump into the first empty transport they see?  "Board next ship"

You can give the "board next ship" order to all units you want transported, and then everything else can be carried out independently by your ally, until you make landfall again.

#6 Ruleset analysis and discussion » Controversial idea: Get rid of allied transport » 2021-08-02 07:24:14

Replies: 2

-WHAT?????  Why would you do that? It doesn't make sense!  Why would you want to take away a feature?  Why can't one nation's ships carry the soldiers of their friend?

Because I don't like it.

-WTH?  So what if you don't like it?  Why would you ruin everybody else's fun just because there's a feature you don't like?

Because it ends up being un-fun: playing optimally with this rule in place is a giant pain in the ass.

Hear me out: the big advantage of LongTurn is that you can take your moves at any time during a turn.  This (in principle) allows people with busy schedules, or vastly different schedules, to all play together even if it's not at the same time.

However, when you have multi-national forces, you MUST move them in coordination with your ally.  If my transports are carrying your marines, then we can't do anything unless both of us are online at the same time. 

-So what's wrong with that?  You have to coordinate for an invasion, and then it's done.

No! It's not done!  Your troops are now in a new place and can only redeploy or be reinforced by your ally's ships.  If you ever want to do anything with them again, you'll have to either coordinate with them (again), or waste resources on your own transports.

-Why do you hate freedom?  Nobody is forcing you to use allied shipping.  If you can't or won't coordinate, then don't.

Because coordination DOES give an advantage.  You can build far fewer transports than would be otherwise required.  Resources that could be spent on more armies.  But it also costs you real-world time and sanity.  Successful coordination with somebody who has a compatible schedule is fine, but you have no guarantee of that in your allies.  If coordination is difficult, it takes a lot more time.  If coordination is impossible, then you're at a strict disadvantage.

-Yeah, but isn't trading time for better outcomes the entire point of the game?  Like if I spend more time managing my empire, I should do better, right?  How is this any different?

Spending time on your empire is done at your own convenience.  You can choose how much time to spend and when you want to spend it and the only person impacted by your decisions is you.  When you are sailing somebody's troops around, or they are carrying yours, then your actions are dependent on each other.  Can't set sail until the troops are loaded.  Can't unload your troops if they haven't arrived at their destination.  It creates lots of delays and dependencies within a turn which otherwise would run fairly smoothly.

-But why single-out ships?  You have to coordinate sieges and city assaults too.  You can't get away from coordination.

True, but ships are the most egregious example of un-coordinated action being disastrous or impossible.  If you sail your ships over to an enemy coast, but your ally isn't online to unload them, then you're at risk of the entire invasion force being sunk at sea in sight of land.

-Welcome to life.  Shit happens.  Things go wrong and plans fail.  Why are you making a big deal about THIS thing?

Because I'm still a bit burned out from spending 2+ hours straight coordinating fleet logistics with my allies (on multiple occasions) in the LT57 Island Game.  We did it because it was efficient.  One player could focus on ship-building, another on making armies.  Focus on different tech areas and build the fast-moving transports from further away to pick up the armies as they got built and amassed locally.  Lots of good sensible reasons.

But it was a PAIN.  And if a game rule encourages behavior that's not fun, it's not a good rule.  If the possibility of ridiculous multi-national cooperation exists, then you're obligated to use it where it would give you an advantage.  But it's not an ability that's available to everyone (based on the whims of geography and schedule), and when it is available making full use of it can come at a high cost to the players involved.

But if NOBODY can carry allied troops in their ships, then players will be more free to act on their own time with fewer critical maneuvers that demand simultaneous presence.

-So that's it?  You're whining about a tough time you had in one game and now you want the rules to be changed to protect your feelings?

Yeah, basically.  But I don't think I'm the only person who has experienced this, just the only one bold enough to make the proposal.
I was inspired to write this when I was reading what panch93 wrote in the #introduction channel on the LongTurn Discord server.
Specifically this paragraph.

Secondly, another obstacle is finding the time to play. Even the shortest game of Civ requires a time investment and nobody can do it in breaks between other things. If you don't have at least half an hour of 100% concentrated attention at your disposal, it doesn't make sense even to start. LongTurn, on the other hand, can be played relatively casually and, if you can't spare a large block of time, it can be played in small chunks throughout the day. So, basically, if you are a working adult with a number of responsibilities, but you would still like to play a world leader in your favorite game, and do it with or against other people, this is the variant you want to play.

(emphasis added)

I realized that while largely true in many cases, this was absolutely NOT the case for allied boat logistics.  So in the interests of making the game more casual and noob-friendly, I thought I'd propose making boat-sharing illegal.  If I don't like it, then nobody can do it! smile

Also it neatly solves frustrating edge-cases like "What happens to units on an allied ship when the alliance ends and the nearest land belongs to a 3rd party?" 

So why not?

#7 Re: LT57 » Resignation and Congratulations » 2021-03-05 20:08:27

Good game everybody!  This was a blast to play these last 3 months.  Sorry it had to end so abruptly when it seemed like there was still so much action.

Our team's plan had after jwrober's Scotland got overrun had been to gather together one final invasion force to go out with a bang.  The invasion of ghamath's India was successful, but costly.  Louis94 had anticipated an invasion of Ireland, and so had enough defense to stop it, and we did have enough forces to probably drive it into the sea, but the issue is that our heart just wasn't in it any more.

In principle, I'd love to fight to the death, and I really hate denying you guys the satisfaction of conquest, but I've been too tired recently to play well, and Louis94 was getting busy in RL as well.  So we decided to end the game on a high note, even though there was probably another 50-100 turns left to play before the world was destroyed by nuclear fire.

But that's all water under the bridge now.  The game is officially resigned.  I'll do my best to provide a summary of "How did we get here?" so everybody can see our team's perspective.


A peculiar ambition of mine had been to do a "real" writeup of a LongTurn game.  I'd been disappointed at the lack of records of the epic battles, plans, and ambitions that are involved in each game of LongTurn I've played.  So I decided to make daily posts on another Civilization forum (Realms Beyond) illustrating the story from my perspective. 

Warning: it is NOT a short concise read.
https://www.realmsbeyond.net/forums/sho … p?tid=9350

In that forum thread (starting on post #4) I exhaustively detail my nation's status, strategic plans, and highlight important world events as they come up.  I was able to keep this up until Turn 69 when I came down with a nasty case of "too darn tired".  It's a long and epic read, because...how does the phrase go? "I would have written a shorter letter if I'd had more time."

You can read that at your leisure, but now that the game is over, I have some time to collect my thoughts and try to write something that actually resembles a summary...

#8 Re: Ruleset analysis and discussion » Reflections on the LT51 ruleset » 2020-07-08 08:52:04

wieder wrote:

Thanks for your analysis for LT51. There will be some changes based on it. Actually many changes.

I apologize in advance for my very long reply

wieder wrote:

The gold multiplier buildings have been discussed for a while and the issue was known but nothing was really done to it. Except some late game changes. Here is what will be changed for the next game:

- while marketplaces will remain as they are now, banks will only give 25% bonus and there will be a new building "Trade Center" that will also give 25% bonus. The Trade Center will become available with economics and both bank and trade center will cost slightly more than the old bank used to cost.
- stock markets will be available with corporation, making them effectively available only after industrialization.

This is not a massive change some people maybe expected and it will not change the game too much. Instead it should only slow down the economy and make it slightly harder to follow the old path for a killer economy.

"Trade Center" sounds a bit too generic.  Maybe... "Mercantile Exchange"? "Commodities Exchange"?  "Emporium"? "Trading Company"?

Also perhaps the bonuses to Gold and Luxury production from these buildings could be separated too.  The Stock Exchange's real power was to tip cities over into profitable celebration rather than that last bit of gold bonus.

wieder wrote:

Democracy will have a smaller empire size and empire size step. Both will be 16. This may delay people from switching to demo.

The Great Lighthouse will remain costing 200 shields. It has been very useful in some of the past games and getting that bonus should come with a high price. We can evaluate this again later.

"Very useful" how?  Did somebody make a major naval push with veteran Triremes that defeated a larger navy of non-veterans?  Did the +1 movement become a critical factor in attacks? 
The Lighthouse costs more than the Pyramids and Colossus combined!  (And the Pyramids are totally OP) It costs more than Sun Tzu's, and delivers less! It only enhances a one single unit, and one whose only power is as a troop transport (or to fight other troop transports).
So...I disagree. wink

wieder wrote:

The unit upgrades are now more expensive until late game. The discovery of invention will reduce the upgrade cost by 20% and later with robotics the players will get a 30% cut to the cost of upgrading units.

That should reduce exploits, but my only puzzlement here why Invention should reduce upgrade costs.  Prior to Invention, there's almost nothing to upgrade in the first place!  That just sets the default upgrade price at 0.8*rush-buy.  Which isn't a bad thing (most upgrades will still be very expensive), just odd.

wieder wrote:

Now those changes that will really change some upgrade strategies:

- cavalries will not be obsoleted
- horses will be obsoleted by chariots
- riflemen are obsoleted by a new unit called infantry. This unit will not have the ability to attack from the sea

-Cavalry never goes obsolete?  Was there a problem with it becoming Mech Infantry?  I'm asking because I truly don't know, having never fought in that era.
-Chariots obsoleting Horses I suppose is reasonable (though historically odd), since they already do in practice.  And where the Chariot's inability to cross mountain and swamp or board a ship becomes an issue, the Elephant can do that instead.
-I approve of defense units not upgrading into attack units.  Be cautious that you don't raise their defense too high unless you're prepared to give a serious buff to Artillery to compensate.  Maybe make them 5A/5D like the old Alpine Troops used to be in Civ2?

wieder wrote:

Also not only related to upgrading units, fundamentalism will become available with feudalism. Warriors will be obsoleted by pikemen that will also become available with feudalism. This means that players can still use the warrior upgrading strategies but may need to choose monarchy or republic if they want to do that.

Interesting.  Is this move just to buff Feudalism?

wieder wrote:

Knights will get a boost but with a slight penalty. Knights will have attack of 6 and defense of 3 but with only 4 moves.

Wow...useful knights!  That's strong enough to fight Muskets on flat ground.  I worry it might make Pikes vulnerable.  Actually, it might make Pikes obsolete, since Knights would have the same defense!  But Pikes are much cheaper, so it will probably all work out.  But in any case, Knights deserve to be strong given their position in the tech tree.  Will be interesting to see the consequences.

wieder wrote:

S-R Caravel is not changed for now but maybe it should be slightly more expensive and not unique for the island games. The island games should have slightly different ruleset compared to continental games. This would also help with siege units.

Square-Rigs as a weird Attack-Ship/special transport hybrid?  It's a little odd, but I have no problem with this.  Assuming that you actually give them the ability to transport siege (which they could not do in LT51), then this could open up more possibilities for warfare on islands.
Also, don't let them go obsolete by Galleons unless Galleons are actually given superior abilities.  It is sad to see a Warship suddenly lose the ability to Attack because of Leonardo's Workshop.

wieder wrote:

The frigates used to have the traditional Civ2Civ3 A and D values but now they have A4 and D3.

Ironclads will have A6 and D5 but they will lose one move with this change so that they now have 10 moves.

Attack should never exceed Defense at sea.  This just makes the winner of battles the one who attack first.  The only reason for high attack strengths in the game is to overcome defense bonuses.  But at sea, there ARE no defense bonuses.  If anything, Defense should be higher than attack so that naval victories require superior concentration of forces, and transport ships could actually be protected on the ocean.  Ships need to be able to leave harbor once in a while!

At the very least, the Ironclad should have higher Defense than Attack, because they historically represented a great leap in Armor over Firepower, and it would be funny to see Ironclad stand-offs.  But I would also be glad to see them gain more coastal attack power, so I'm torn on this.

Maybe 4A/4D Frigates, 6A/4D Flagships, and 5A/6D Ironclads?

wieder wrote:

No change to artillery at this time. This needs more thought.

Siege Units in general need rethinking.  Their specific anti-city attack bonus is a bit odd (they are useless against forts), and makes them nothing but the "ammunition" you expend when conquering cities.  Which maybe is ok.

wieder wrote:

Cruisers indeed have D8 and A4 on purpose and it's definitely intentional.

This is the sort of thing I'd like to see in other eras too.  Can you imagine it? Being able to defend the seas?  It's such a beautiful dream.

wieder wrote:

Also no change to the forts. Forts are powerful but they are not always that useful.

It's true, they are static defenses which can be bypassed.  Only capturing cities truly matter.  But there will always be some situations where forts create a ridiculously unbeatable defense that cannot be bypassed.

wieder wrote:

Comments and feedback is welcome. I think we should test this on the next game and revert back if this stuff doesn't work.

I think a re-evaluation of the Attack/Defense values of many units is in order.  One big issue is the silly doubling of HP in the Gunpowder era. 
It greatly limits your ability to fine-tune Attack and Defense values when adding +1 Attack is actually adding +2 to the real combat power.  Also it makes no sense that Gunpowder doubles HP, rather than Firepower or something like that.  The only reason something so silly is in the rule-set in the first place is because "Civ2 did it", and it didn't make sense then either.  But perhaps a discussion about the "Total overhaul of the combat system" belongs elsewhere... smile

#9 Ruleset analysis and discussion » Reflections on the LT51 ruleset » 2020-07-01 09:52:38

Replies: 3

The LongTurn ruleset has undergone slow improvement and modification over the years, changing things to improve balance and flow of the game.

My thoughts on some things that need improvement in the ruleset as I experienced it in LT51:


  • Gold-multiplier buildings come too fast too early.  Markets are good as they are, but Banks come rather soon afterwards, and Stock Exchanges come WAY too soon.  Why is this a problem?  It means that nations experience an "Industrial Revolution" of sorts long before Factories and Power Plants.  Gold buys gold multiplier buildings, which buys more multipliers and happiness buildings to support max-food growth, which then finally culminates in a mass-purchase of Libraries and Universities to begin a massive tech rush.  This greatly enhances the powers of Farming, and of sacrificing everything in the name of food, and the trade that results from the population growth.  Early Stock-Exchanges also make it too easy to Celebrate.

  • Democracy is a very powerful government.  Not only do you get a strong celebration bonus, but you're immune to Bribery and Incitement!  I scarcely saw another government this game besides Fundamentalism and Democracy.  Both, not coincidentally, are immune to Incitement.  The one notable example I saw of a player not using one of these governments switched from Monarchy to Democracy after I bought all the cities on one of his islands.

  • The Great Lighthouse small wonder is badly overpriced for what it does.  Although getting veteran Triremes is nice, at 200 production it costs nearly as much as 7 triremes!  If you're fighting an early battle for control of the seas, you can't afford to build it.  By the time you CAN afford it, the age of Triremes is over as anything but a specialized river-boat.  And the movement bonus?  +2 movement is nice to have, and it gives it to all of your ships...except Triremes!!!.  Those only receive a +1 bonus unless they are feeling brave enough to actually sit around on the open ocean for a turn.  Reduce the price of this wonder, and remove that ridiculous exception for "not starting on the ocean".

  • Unit Upgrades are too cheap.  I know they still cost a lot of gold, but it can be mathematically proven that it is better to rush-buy a mass of Warriors or Horsemen and then upgrade them to Muskets or Cavalry later.  This does lead to an interesting strategic gambit of "how long should I invest in obsolete units before I upgrade them into a modern army?", but it comes at the cost of being totally stupid on one critical point:  It gives you a dis-incentive to research modern weapons!  When you research Feudalism to build Pikes, you say "oh no, I can't build warriors any more!".  When you research Chivalry to build Knights, you say "Oh no, I can't build horsemen any more!".  This is stupid.  Technology should help, not hurt.


  • Knights are useless.  By the time you can get them, Pikemen are available, and gunpowder is just on the horizon.  Knights aren't even a strength upgrade over Chariots, just more flexible.  A pity that they are obsolete as soon as you discover them.  Made worse still by the fact that researching Chivalry denies you the ability to build cheap horses for upgrades, and you have a unit that you're literally better off without.  Give them 5 or 6 attack.  Give knights teeth.

  • Island warfare is pretty boring in the early/mid game.  If your opponent has their rivers protected from your Triremes, and has covered all of the mountains/hills that you could try to unload on, your options for attack and harassment are basically non-existent.  There should be at least SOME "can attack from non-native tiles" units available in the early game.  They don't have to be powerful, but there should at least be the option to attack weak targets and seize landing points.

  • Transport ships are very very powerful.  Not sure if this is a problem, but their extremely high movement speed allows for powerful actions of strategic surprise.  Warships are nearly useless in comparison.  If a stretch of water can be covered by a Trireme/Caravel/Galleon/Transport in a single turn, then all of the navies in the world won't be able to save you if your opponent has a way to unload an attacking army in your land.

  • Siege Units are nearly useless on islands.  Certainly so for attacking cities.  They were mainly used for sinking ships foolish enough to wander close to shore.  Why can't they help attack cities? BECAUSE YOU CAN'T TRANSPORT THEM.  Not until the modern era, at which time they are nothing more than cost-effective ammunition for grinding down cities in an invasion.  The fact that Galleons can't carry Cannons is a bit ridiculous.  At least let Galleons be useful as more than just "bigger faster caravels".  Now, granted, this will turn Transports into "Bigger, Faster Galleons" by taking away their qualitative difference, but you need siege transport ability sooner in order to make the game interesting.

  • Frigates are Ridiculous.  They are very nice units in the power they open up to raid coastlines and murder pre-gunpowder units, but their 4 attack is paired with an absurdly low defense strength of 2.  TWO!!!!  And there's no defensive terrain to offset this.  This means that naval warfare with frigates becomes purely a matter of who attacks first.  Can you imagine fighting a land war on pure flat plains with nothing but Horsemen?  yeah, that sounds pretty terrible.  And yet that's what the entire Age of Sail is.  One giant game of "rocket tag".

  • Ironclads are useless.  Their stats are identical to a slow Frigate except they are provided with a luxurious 4 defense.  Wow!  That's what a Frigate should have had in the first place, but now you have that in a unit that: Comes later, Costs more, Moves slower, and will soon be obsolete.  And they're not any stronger!  A Frigate vs. Ironclad battle is a 50/50 fight.  Ironclads can't attack any better than a Frigate, and can't defend well enough to be able to protect shipping.  Both ships upgrade to Destroyers.  If they came from the same tech, I'd prefer the Ironclads to the glass-cannon frigates, but as it stands, there's basically no reason to build Ironclads.  Raise their Attack and Defense to something higher.  5A/5D?

  • Artillery is underwhelming.  Sure it's better than Cannons.  But not by all THAT much.  10 attack power for 60p vs. 8 attack power for 50p.  That's only a marginal improvement, and hardly the level of benefit I would expect from a unit so high on the tech tree.  If it didn't lead to other techs, I might not even bother.  Give it 12 Attack, make it be a real upgrade.

  • Cruisers have 2x Defense as their Attack!  I'm not complaining, I like this.  Imagine the possibilities...being able to actually defend things on the open ocean.  Is it too much to dream?  Or was this a typo and they were supposed to have 8 Attack instead?

  • Forts are extremely powerful.  Preventing stack-kill is good, but also doubling the defense of the tile (multiplying with all the other defense bonuses) makes units in a fort nearly invincible.  Their only weakness is that as a form of Static Defense, they can be bypassed, any if the supporting cities of the units die, the fort is abandoned.  I'm still uncertain how I feel about them.  Overpowered or Inconsequential?

That's all the thoughts I have for now.

#10 Re: LT51 » LT51 - Game Over - Team Privateers Victory » 2020-07-01 07:42:29

I was surprised that the surrender came on the very turn of Zamo's invasion (nice move, by the way!), but I can understand.

The nearly uncontested ownership of the Poles that the Freebooters were able to achieve created a potentially interesting dynamic, but I think the gains from that were going to be too little, too late.

I think that the best the Freebooters could have achieved at this point would have been to fight a war of attrition and harassment against the peripheral Privateers while Slovakia marched inexorably towards nuclear weapons.

#11 Re: Ruleset analysis and discussion » Naval Battles in the Age of Sail » 2020-06-28 22:03:18

Corbeau wrote:

Defence bigger than Attack may create another set of problems, being it is increasingly difficult to fend off an invasion fleet.

my idea would be a close A and D (maybe A=D+1) but also a limited number of combat rounds, possible for a ship to sink, but it may also survive.

What's the problem with navies actually being able to do something useful like "Defend Transports"?  Currently all they do is sit around in port until a target comes foolishly into range.

D > A would allow navies to actually travel the ocean and be a real "presence" there.  You could even to shocking things like use your navy to GUARD places!

Maybe the simplest thing to do would be to keep all ships at A = D, but then have the Ocean provide a defense bonus.

#12 Re: New and current games » Real-Time Longturn. Just a thought. » 2020-06-11 20:18:46

I like this idea!  The discrete "End of Turn" still causes major issues in terms of exploiting it to make sure moves can happen before or after it has completed.  Even the 10 hour time limit is not enough, since it just means there are 3 critical times each turn(TC-10h, TC, and TC+10h) which can allow you to get two moves in before your opponent can react.

But if this is broken up and spread across the whole day, then no single time becomes as intensely special.

I can only think of two problems off the top of my head:

  • Rounding.  Sub-dividing the turns will result in a LOT of rounding issues with partial income and partial yields.  Maybe this could be avoided by multiplying all costs by ~24 or something, but then things could end up looking really messy (and unit rush-buy costs would have to be re-scaled...)

  • Hourly TCs.  What happens if suddenly every hour there's the potential for unexpected moves and you could never fully trust whether a player's action has "completed" or not.

But both of these seem fairly minor, and could be fixed without too much trouble.  I think the move timer could probably even be increased, since there's no hard TC boundary any more that would squeeze your move times.  A "Delayed Goto" command would be essential, though.

#13 Re: Ruleset analysis and discussion » Naval Battles in the Age of Sail » 2020-06-09 15:56:24

So turrets represent ammunition?

One thing I think would be nice to see with defense higher than attack is that ships could actually do some good while out of port.  We have a brief glimpse of this with Longboats and Caravels having A1/D2, but in the latter case Square-Rigs become wolves on the water.

Galleons should have enough Defense to resist a Frigate, and I definitely think that Ironclads should have more defense than attack, given their early history.

#14 Ruleset analysis and discussion » Naval Battles in the Age of Sail » 2020-06-09 07:54:04

Replies: 6

Square-Rig Caravels, Frigates and Flagships have one thing in common: Their attack strength is significantly higher than their defense strength.

This creates a situation where the only rule of naval warfare is: If you attack first, you win.

There is no terrain in the ocean, just open flat terrain with no defense bonuses.  On this battlefield, we place units with movement rates well in excess of their vision, and an attack twice as strong as their defense.

The result is a situation where ships either wander blindly through the oceans simply hoping that they locate an enemy before it locates them, or they spend all their time hiding in port waiting to ambush unsuspecting prey.

Now, this is not all THAT different than other eras (initiative still matters in trireme battles), but at least when Attack and Defense are balanced, the defender has a chance, and naval superiority becomes a matter of built-strategy rather than luck and tactical first-strikes. 

Would you be willing to fight a war with nothing but cavalry on an open plain?  And yet we accept these A4/D2 Frigates because "That's how Civ2 did it".

To restore balance on the high seas, I propose that ALL ships should have a Defense strength that is no lower than their Attack strength.  In fact, an interesting case could even be made for making the Defense strengths higher than the Attack...

#15 Ruleset analysis and discussion » Hitpoints, Firepower, and Attack. » 2020-05-09 08:26:38

Replies: 2

The system of having a "Hitpoints" and "Firepower" statistic on units is a blind carry-over from Civ2.

HP and FP both serve to change how many combat rounds a battle lasts, and can end up cancelling each other out.  2 Firepower vs 20HP means you'll still last 10 combat rounds.

Furthermore, if you do an analysis of the combat effects of increasing the Attack of a unit, compared to the HP of a unit, or the FP of a unit, you will find that they are virtually identical.  All that these serve to do is linearly increase the Combat Power of a unit.  Try it out with the war-calculator.

Civ2's system of doubling the HP of gunpowder era unit never made any sense.  If anything, it should be their Firepower, but more importantly, the overall effect is that a Musketeer fights as though it had an Attack/Defense of 6.  Why not just do that, I wonder?

Fiddling with HP can be used as a means of fine-tuning the combat powers of a unit when you'd otherwise be stuck choosing between an strength of "1" or "2".  However, this just suggests that no units should ever had combat stats that low.

Increasing Firepower or decreasing HP can also serve to add more "luck" to battles, since they'll last fewer rounds.  Consider that in a 5v4 battle, with 10HP on each side, the attacker has a 68% chance to win, but with 100HP on each side it jumps to 94%.  HP/FP ratios can be used to control how much the dice control the outcome of battles, changing the "flavor" of warfare.

There is one case however where FP and HP have a unique effect in combat: Bombardment.  In bombardment attacks, a hit is either delivered, or it misses, no "battle to the end".  This means that the ability of bombarders to do damage is limited by their firepower, since although their attack strength could be high enough to guarantee hits, they only get a finite number of shots.  Similarly, units on the receiving end, if their HP is high enough can show great resilience to damage that one might not expect from their direct-combat statistics.

But overall, the effect of a 4-Def. unit with 20HP is indistinguishable from an 8-Def. unit with 10HP that has an ability that says "Takes half damage from bombardment".

My opinion is this: HP and FP should be used as tools to change the style and properties of a battle, but NOT to grant units "Extra Power" that is hidden from their Attack/Defense stats.

  • If you want to make a unit more "all or nothing" in it's attacks, of raise the damage-ceiling of bombardment, then increase its Firepower.

  • If you want to make a unit resistant to bombardment, or make its combat less prone to randomness, then increase it's Hit Points.

  • If you want to make a unit stronger, increase it's Attack/Defense.

#17 Re: Meanwhile... » Graphics for new units » 2020-05-09 07:04:35

I've given the RoundSquare tileset an "Age of Sail" upgrade.
http://forum.freeciv.org/f/viewtopic.ph … 6&start=50

Ships from Left to Right:
Longboat, Caravel, Flagship Frigate, Barge, Square-Rigged Caravel.

I adapted graphics from XYZ's collection for the Barge and "bigger and better" Square-Rigged Caravel.
The one I drew was so slender that it didn't look the part, but will do just fine as a normal "Caravel".

I do however humbly request that the "square rigged caravel" be renamed the "Nau", which is what the graphic most accurately represents.
Those were the big ships that the Portuguese sent to India, escorted by smaller Caravels.

#18 Re: Meanwhile... » Graphics for new units » 2020-05-04 01:05:18

It didn't occur to me to check for what work other people have done.  I'll take a look at these.

#19 Re: Meanwhile... » RoundSquare Tileset (Trident modified to look good) » 2020-05-02 09:42:25

Yeah, I thought it was a better idea to use a PAST game for an illustration of RoundSquare, rather than a current one like LT51 wink.
I made a map of all of Green Team's land shortly before I had to depart that game.  It showed a nice variety of terrain and action.

#20 Meanwhile... » RoundSquare Tileset (Trident modified to look good) » 2020-05-01 17:01:40

Replies: 3

This looks like a good place to post about the RoundSquare tileset that I've made for use in the LT games.

A 30x30 tileset is great for viewing these large maps, but unfortunately Trident graphics are UGLY and make my eyes bleed.
I replaced or modified nearly every terrain graphic to give a crisper, cleaner, easier-on-the-eyes set of graphics that make looking at the strategic map a pleasure, instead of a pain.

Here is an example image from LT45.
As you can see, the Units and Cities are still Trident graphics, but the terrain is much more readable!
I broke up the Hills/Forests/Mountains so that it's easier to see where tiles begin and end without having to impose the ugly grid-lines. 
The rounded contours of the coastline graphics give the name to the Tile Set.
You may have also noticed that I changed the Tile yield graphics to show "pips" instead of numbers.  I find this easier to read without cluttering up the landscape with text.  Bright green is for food surplus from a tile, red means that tile costs food to work.

I am also trying to keep it up to date with the addition of new units, finding or creating suitable graphics for the special units added to the game.
I added the Square-Rigged Caravel yesterday:

#21 Meanwhile... » Graphics for new units » 2020-05-01 16:39:37

Replies: 6

Adding new units to rulesets often requires some corresponding new graphics.  When they are not available, then you default to duplicate graphics. But I do not like this.
I am in the process of attempting to provide distinct 30x30 unit graphics for the LT ruleset.

Previously I improved (added little waves to) the Longship graphic, and cleaned up the (quite ugly) graphics for the Flagship Frigate.
Today I made a graphic for the Square Rigged Caravel, and soon I plan to get something distinctive for the Barge as well

update: added Steam Paddler graphic for the Barge, re-worked another ship graphic into a beefier "square rigged caravel" (Nau), used my own ship to replace the normal Caravel, and then fiddled with the Flagship Frigate graphic to make it look prettier.
Behold my progress!
old progress image: https://i.imgur.com/Gy84Vwe.png

#22 LT51 » Reduced Early-Unit Speeds » 2020-04-28 04:05:29

Replies: 1

How do we feel about the reduced movement speeds for early units?
It matters a bit less on an islands map where it's mostly ships involved, but it does change the dynamics for how fast attackers can mobilize and how quickly defenders can rush in. 
The movement penalty for starting on a mountain also makes a much bigger difference here!

#23 Re: LT45 » Delegations » 2018-12-11 21:36:31

Dim (Ukraine) had been controlling Ferg (Ohlone), but when Dim left, kamBLR took over both nations.

The Ohlone(Ferg) are cut off from rest of Red Team and (last I saw) nearly dead. 
It may be a problem that solves itself soon enough, depending on the actions of Blue and White.

#24 Re: LT45 » Ruleset suggestions for future games. » 2018-12-10 22:38:22

Wahazar wrote:
Hans_Lemurson wrote:
  • Allow Settlers to bypass ZOC.  Settler movement being blocked by explorers before a military can even be created is kinda BS.

It is already solved in v.2.6 (explorer have HasNoZOC flag)

Yay!  I vaguely remember reading that.

#25 Re: LT45 » Ruleset suggestions for future games. » 2018-12-09 19:51:19

zoltan wrote:

No to all

Care to explain any of your objections?

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