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How will 1UPT affect Simultaneous Multiplaying


  • How will 1UPT affect Simultaneous Multiplaying

    Civilization 5 will bring us the biggest change to the game since the beginning of the series. Since Civ2 the "stack of doom" has been haunting the series. While the original Civilization had the most effective way to deal with this problem (When the first unit of the stack got attacked, and lost, all units of the stack were gone, unless they were in a fortress). Despite the collateral damage introduced with Civ4, stacks of doom remained of major importance. Especially when the stack included some properly promoted machine gunners or something similar. One did not need a lot of strategical insights to win a war when a SoD had been created. A large number of different units was enough. And then the biggest stack wins. Not that there is no strategy involved at all, but the great generals of the past would shiver by the limited strategical options Civ2, 3 and 4 would have to offer them.

    With Civ5 this is all over! Finally the SoD has been dealt with. The solution is as easy as the Civ1 one, but a lot more elegant. Stacks are not allowed at all anymore. Every tile (Hexagon) can only contain 1 (one) military unit! (1UPT = 1 unit per tile). The strength of this unit depends on the bonus it gets from the units it's flanked by. (artillery gives an advantage, a closeby great general does so, ranged units behind it give a different type of advantages, etc). Suddenly it matters how you line up your army! You need a mix of everything in the right formation. But not only the right formation is good enough, when one of your key units dies you need to bring a replacement as soon as possible, to avoid that your vulnerable ranged units are toasted. Some units must be deployed first before they can be used. This blog has not the intention to explain all the details, but you get the image. Now it suddenly does matter a lot less how much units you have. What matters is how you place them, move them and promote them. And that's fantastic. It's something completely new for the Civilization-series. It's a huge step forward. But it also worries me.

    This kind of strategy works fine for board games (Stratego) or turn-based computer games (Civilization IV). But what about simultaneous Multiplaying? Ever since multiplayer was (officially) introduced to the series, it has incorporated simultaneous playing. While the game is TBS at heart, for multiplayer there are only a very few die-hard fans who prefer to play that way. Simultaneous playing has always had it's difficulties, especially when war was involved. It then turned into a speed-click-fest for normal games, and the infamous "Double Move" drama was introduced for pitboss games.

    While the speed-click-fest always has been an issue for the multiplaying community (the most famous civ blog, "fastmoves", borrowed it's name from it!) I cannot even imagine the troubles this new combat system will introduce for multiplaying. While for the usual single player game the strategical options will be increased, multiplaying may turnout more then ever to be about speed clicking. Who attacks what unit first from which angle, who is able to fill up the new whole in the defense first after the battle has finished? What if the connection lags? You can lose your ranged units because you weren't paying attention, while you have good melee units lined up to move forward and defend them. Suddenly this may all be about speed! Imagine a game of Stratego where both players can move all their units all at the same time....

    Now not much is known yet for Multiplayer in Civ 5. We know that it will ship with a Pitboss server (which will be released later, just as with the Civ4 Pitboss). And maybe the Common Pitboss Community rules can be the solution for the other game styles as well. When war starts the involved players are suddenly forced into a turn-based order. It delays the game a bit, but it increases the fun a lot. No more heated heads. Young ignorant boys that lack any understanding of strategy will suddenly be beated by ancient old ladies with actual knowledge of the game! No longer will a failing mouse stop you from conquering a city. Civ at heart for multiplayer games. But while it's easy to implement such a rule for pitboss games, it won't work that easy for normal multiplayer games. That's why we must hope that Firaxis will introduce this Turn Based War option for Civ5!

    Civ V + 1UPT + MP + TBW = The best possible combination any multiplayer strategist can dream of! Bring it to us or face the consequences! Our words are backed with Nuclear Weapons! Consequences Schmonsequences!

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    • Robert
      Robert commented
      Editing a comment
      Originally posted by Aro
      I don't know if this thread should be in this place... Here is Civ V, isn't?
      This is about 1UPT in Civ5, astro answered about how they handled the double move thing in civ4.
      It's a thread were civ5 and civ4 merge

    • adnana
      adnana commented
      Editing a comment
      Originally posted by Robert Plomp
      There are many kinds of civ multiplayer games.
      Some do not like to play games the way you do.
      I do not enjoy fastmoves or control-a kinds of games (well, I do, but not as much as longer, slower games that focus less on speed and quick responses). The people I play with care to think about their moves a lot longer. It's just another type of game then you apparently play. And for those games such an option would be very needed. I wonder btw if this 1UPT thing is going to work out for your kind of games. Maybe it will, but it may also fail. It's very designed for TBS games, not for STBS games.
      Rober, please note the "real-time" adjective. I know there are many ways in which people can experience civ playing together. As for thinking about your moves, trust me, there is A LOT of thinking going on in our kind of multiplaying games, the only difference is that you need to train your brain to think fast and take decisions even faster. Good, experienced players can take the right decision in a blink of an eye and 99% of the time it will be THE SAME decision that your TBS players take.

      It's hard, I for one am more of a chess player rather than a "real-time moves" kind of player, but this does not ruin my civ experience. On the contrary, knowing that most of the time I will rather lose the "fastmove" I try to compensate by superior strategical thinking and positioning. Yes, there is the risk that sometimes, in the heat of the battle and under the pressure of time I might make the wrong call, but this happens in real life (real battles) as well. We try to learn from our mistake and become better players.

      My point about "fastmoves" and "ctrl-a" is that the game can be played the way we play it without becoming a "who has the fastest mouse click wins" kind of game. Ctrl-a is a defensive command and beats any kind of connection, mouse click speed or "fastmove". You can strategically use it for a lot of purposes and it is part of the game. You know about it and your opponent knows about it and you both can plan your moves around it.

      I was a much weaker player before I learned about the true meanings of "fastmove" and "ctrl-a" because most of my strategies were chaotical since I did not understand the game mechanics. And yes I was blaming it on the damn fast clickers when it had nothing to do with it. There was only my ignorance to be blamed.
      Last edited by adnana; September 2, 2010, 06:03.

    • Robert
      Robert commented
      Editing a comment
      As for thinking about your moves, trust me, there is A LOT of thinking going on in our kind of multiplaying games, the only difference is that you need to train your brain to think fast and take decisions even faster. Good, experienced players can take the right decision in a blink of an eye and 99% of the time it will be THE SAME decision that your TBS players take.

      I believe you.
      But some aren't able to do that in such a short time.
      They prefer to play civ the way it was intended to be played, or at least close to it.
      The request for a TBW option is not against you guys
      I know that fastmoving or knowing all control-options, and using them correctly, does not make someone win the game. It's good that those options are available, so that it is possible to play these fast games. I hope they'll be available in civ5 as well!
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