|My Civilization 5 idea: A matter of time|
January 8, 2009, 9:32:53 pm
I present to you my idea for a Civilization 4 mod or a game changer for Civilization 5 I had recently, while showering.
One thing that interests me in Civ is the choice that, as a player, you look down upon high at all that is going on from the start of the game til the end of the game. I wondered, what would the game be like if you were actually down there - in the palace.
New game mechanic idea: Time. Every square represents an update from a courier about the state of a square, as it is known by visibility of units, roads, cities. The further from a place of authority, the longer it takes to receive an update for a square.
You give your units orders, they walk off to do your bidding. Each turn, information is sent back to you from every square that you can see - but it's done based on the technology and improvements you have available - to begin with, every report is done by foot. When you get horses, couriers are going to be riding - so it's a bit faster.. with roads, a bit faster still, with railroads, rather fast, telegraph, radio.. and finally satellite where you can see the entire world in ~1 turn lag.
Civics would give you the capacity to receive information faster. Monarchy must mean you have a hierarchy - you'll be able to put lords in a couple of your cities. The palace is where you live - moving your palace naturally shifts the flow of information, so if you have a big empire, you'll probably want to move your palace to the middle. The forbidden palace gives you another place to receive updates.
One of the unique implications is.. every player has a different view of the world (fog of war would also be obsolete). One player can see their army attacking your city and you only just found out there was an army at your borders.. naturally, the attacking player has no idea whether his army succeeded or not - but perhaps he included a fast courier in his stack which would reduce the time it takes to get back information of how the war is going.
A barbarian uprising on your borders could be a very bad thing.. you'd better have put enough military in to the nearby city to defend it, because by the time you've heard about the uprising, they're probably already pillaging and attacking your city. A few turns later you may hear the good news.. or the bad news about the fate of your city.
The game would become a great deal more strategical in nature and you would in many respects be limited in growth by your technology. Writing, Alphabet, Mapping are all things that can decrease the time it takes to receive information too, not just communication based techs.
It would force you, as a player, not to over extend yourself.. imagine if you will your only time advantage is roads and horses.. building the roman empire stretched across Europe would be a significant achievement, considering the slowness of news coming your way. You'd be playing very well indeed.
When you enter the age of the ocean, ships arriving on your coast - you'll really want to know about it, so building up your trade networks, having an appropriate civil structure, the right buildings, the right techs, will be really important - otherwise a surprise attack could be very bad indeed.
How about colonization? If you go to another continent and capture some cities or found some cities.. if it takes too many turns to get information back, they might just up and declare independence.. you can either go and fight them at that point or.. accept them as your new friends. There's now a reason why they would become a colony, not just to avoid costs (after all, colonies are usually very profitable).
This would also ease the burden on the AI too, as foreign AIs are much more likely to have room to expand, grow, learn - especially AIs on other continents.. when you meet an AI they're much more likely to be at your level because it would be perilous to expand too fast, or to march an army too far away from your palace to conquer an enemy force - they are so far away that it'd probably be a blind gambit. And even if you succeeded in taking their capital, how long do you think you can keep it if you can't connect a road to it in time?
You'd want the ability to see how old information in a square is - when was the last time you knew about its state in a fresh manner.. it's also interesting to note that sending orders to a unit far away from you means the unit must -receive- the orders before they can act on them. Planning ahead is really really important.
Perhaps this is something that could be done in Civ5. I'm not familiar enough with the modding capabilities as to whether such a system could be implemented in Civ4 - but I'd appreciate hearing if people would be interested in trying such a variant of Civ.
Cross posted to:
Listened to: L'Enfant from the album "Themes" by Vangelis
By Claus on January 12, 2009, 8:51:21 am
By Matt on February 9, 2009, 9:43:22 am