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Call To Power II End Game


  • The Call To Power II End Game

    Designer Diary by Dan Hagerty

    In Call To Power II, there are no less than four ways in which a player can achieve victory. Perhaps most familiar to fans of Civilization: Call To Power is the Conquest (also known as Bloodlust) Victory, in which you win the game only when you have annihilated every other empire on the map. The second-most familiar victory condition is the High Score Victory, in which the empire with the highest score in AD 2300 (the chronological end of the game) wins. Call To Power II replaces the Alien Life Project Victory from Civilization: Call To Power with a new Sci-Fi Victory, in which players strive to be the first to build a futuristic utopian device known as the Gaia Controller. It also adds an end game focused on diplomacy, called the World Peace Victory, in which players must forge and maintain alliances with every nation on the map. The following is designed to familiarize players with the two new end games in Call To Power II.

    Diplomatic Victory

    Call To Power II features the most advanced and sophisticated diplomacy system of any turn-based strategy game to date. Players have the opportunity to request or offer maps, gold, advances and even cities. Players can propose peace treaties as well as military, trade, science and pollution reduction pacts. All players have the opportunity to make counterproposals and even issue forth threats to achieve their aims. All diplomatic actions affect other nations' regard for the player. No less important is other nations' level of trust for the player. It is possible to have a nation highly regard a player and not trust them. The AI will weigh not only your interactions with them, but also your demeanor and actions with the other nations of the world. If one minds his or her manners with the Dutch, for instance, but ruthlessly launches an unprovoked war on the Nicaraguans, not only will the Nicaraguans despise the player, the Dutch will frown on them as well. This will poison the Dutch leader's view of the player and likely affect the Dutch's willingness to enter into future agreements.

    With this in mind, players must be two-headed about achieving the Diplomatic Victory. One does not want to acquiesce to every petty demand from abroad at the peril of his or her empire's growth. At the same time, players do not want to anger his or her neighbors with a voracious appetite for land and resources. The first step towards World Peace is to stop the violence. At the beginning of the game, there is a hazy state of hostile peace between all nations. With fledgling nations vying for land and mistrustful of any foreign unit they encounter, conflict is looming forever on the horizon. Therefore, players will have to make strides to establish peace, such as giving gifts of gold or proposing a map exchange, before they can sign a peace treaty with others. Not all AI personalities will be interested in peace at first, however. Some are hell-bent on taking over the world. No matter how glad-handed one appears to be, these aggressors may view the player as little more than another speed bump on the road to world domination. In fact, imperialistic AI personalities may only agree to a peace treaty after a player's empire has grown sufficiently large enough to pose a threat to them. Much like the real world, the keys to war and peace, both in preventing and encouraging them, are largely functions of diplomacy.

    Maintaining peace treaties is the next step. The longer a player maintains a peace treaty with another nation, the more that nation's trust grows. Players should periodically check their regard and trust levels in the main Diplomacy screen. After opening the Diplomacy Manager, players can roll their mouse over the small face icon and find out how that nation regards and trusts them. (It should say something like "They respect us. They are wary of us.") The first sentence indicates regard, whereas the second sentence indicates trust. Once a player has gained the trust of another nation, he or she can propose trade, research or military pacts with the nation. These are mutually beneficial agreements that galvanize the bonds of trust and friendship and, ultimately, set the stage for a level of trust conducive to an alliance. The alliance is the supreme achievement of the Call To Power II diplomacy system, and it is that which players should strive to create with all other nations. Once a player has created an alliance with every other nation, they must maintain it for a specific time. As long as the alliances remain intact, the player achieves victory.

    Tips for Achieving World Peace:

    • Avoid actions that jeopardize your regard and trust with other nations. These include, but are not limited to: border incursions, unprovoked attacks (attacking a nation's units without having first declared war on them) and piracy. Instead, give gifts of gold, have your diplomats hold receptions, and strive to enter into pacts and treaties with other players.
    • Think long term: Although you may find some AI personalities are prone to have a high regard for you, it may take many, many turns for them to begin to trust you. Although it may take you dozens of turns to establish trust with certain empires, you can throw it all away with an unprovoked attack or hostile action. At that point, it is another long road to building trust again. Weigh the consequences of your actions and keep in mind that, like in the real world, treachery and war wound nations deeply, and the scars of conflict remain for generations.
    • Play nice: The Golden Rule ("Do unto others as you would want them to do unto you.") should dictate your path to peace. Don't want the Germans invading your territory? Perhaps you should stop ordering spies to steal their technology! (Most nations don't like that.) Instead, propose an exchange of advances. If they agree, you're both happy, you've got what you want and you have managed to increase your regard with them.
    • Keep your eye on the ball: The Diplomacy Manager has a considerable amount of information at your disposal for monitoring not only your regard and trust with other nations, but the regard and trust between other nations. Call To Power II will occasionally warn you if you are about to significantly violate trust or regard, but exercise a "common sense" approach to dealing with other nations and you will usually stay within the bounds of acceptable conduct. In the Intelligence screen, in particular, you can find out the leader's name, their personality type and a one- or two-sentence description of their general disposition towards you.
    • Establish embassies: Without question, an embassy in one city per nation is vital to achieving diplomatic victory. A player cannot engage in advanced diplomacy - including most pacts and treaties - without them.

    Gaia Controller Victory

    The Gaia Controller is a highly advanced utopian device capable of producing a limitless supply of resources. It employs a matter-to-energy-to-matter conversion technology discovered with the completion of the Solaris Project. A network of Gaia Satellites circles the globe collecting space debris, converting it to energy. They then beam the energy down to receptors on the surface known as Obelisks. The Obelisks themselves, employing millions of nanites, scour their immediate surroundings for excess matter (i.e. pollution) and convert that into energy as well. All of this energy is beamed to cities that contain Gaia Controller Cores, which monitor the system, control the flow and, most importantly, enable the conversion of energy back into matter. With this system, worldwide pollution is virtually eliminated, waste products of all kinds are reusable and the world has a limitless supply of matter for nanotechnological construction. Having overcome scarcity, which is, historically, a major impetus for war, nations have an unprecedented opportunity to live in peace and harmony.

    To begin the Science Fiction endgame, at least one nation must build the Solaris Project Wonder. Although the player may be the one to build it, once any other nation constructs it, the race for the Gaia Controller is on. Players must build a Controller Core in ten of their cities and at least ten Gaia Satellites as well. Although more than ten Controller Cores will not be necessary, one can build as many as 20 Satellites to increase the radius coverage of Obelisks. Finally, one must place Obelisks at strategic locations across the map. Once enough Obelisks exist to cover sixty percent of the map, a player may initialize the Gaia Controller. During the initialization process, which takes several turns, a player must vigilantly defend the cities in which Controllers and Satellites exist, as well as insure that no enemy destroys an Obelisk through pillaging the tile. The first player to successfully initialize the Gaia Controller wins the game.

    Tips for the Sci-Fi Victory:

    Players may find the greatest challenge in building the Gaia Controller is in placing enough obelisks to sufficiently cover the world. Keep the following in mind when planning your strategy:

    • Obelisk Tile Improvements may be placed on ocean tiles as well as land tiles.
    • If you have an alliance with another nation, you are not only free to move your units within their borders, but also place tile improvements (such as listening posts, radar stations, sonar buoys and, of course, obelisks) on their land as well. Therefore, forging a strategic alliance with another empire may pay off handsomely when it comes time to build the Gaia Controller.
    • If it is beginning to look like you will not control 80% of the physical space of the world by the time you've built the Solaris Project, you will have to get creative about finding ways to get your obelisk in place in order to achieve coverage. If you do not have alliances and control a small chunk of land, you may have to go on the offensive. Consider mobilizing an army or two in order to take a strategically located city. Alternatively, consider using diplomacy to muscle a weaker nation into giving you a city or two.
    • If you are on neutral land, (i.e. land that is not directly within the control of another nation) you may build fortification tile improvements on a square within the vision of one of your units. If you see any islands that are uninhabited, for instance, you may want to consider sending a military unit or two over to build a fortification. Once the fort is complete, you gain control of a few squares of land around the fort. You essentially control this land, and, therefore, are free to build tile improvements on it. This tactic may significantly increase your coverage of the world, but keep in mind that other nations may seek out your obelisks and destroy them. Consider defending your fort.
    • Once any nation builds the Solaris Project Wonder, all nations gain access to building the Gaia Controller satellites, obelisks and controller cores. Because you will be racing against the rest of the world, have a game plan in place for getting things done.

    Other Victories

    Players may find that the Conquest victories may be more challenging to achieve than it was in the first CTP game, owing to several new features in unit stacking and the combat system. Armies can now be twelve units strong (in contrast to Call To Power's nine unit limit) and, consequently, cities will tend to be better defended. Flanking and ranged units change the nature of combat in Call To Power II, and reward the player who sends out well-balanced armies. An army of twelve offensive units may not fare as well as a force of offensive, ranged and flanking units. Likewise, the AI is fond of building armies, both in offensive and defensive configurations, so players may want to keep this in mind when planning military strategy and, especially, city conquest. Finally, the addition of unit armor ratings, as well as counterattacks, vastly improves the depth and sophistication of the combat model.

    The Call To Power II design team felt strongly about offering the player a multitude of opportunities to complete the game, not all of which were based on military might. Although players who derive satisfaction from obliterating their enemies and laying claim to every square inch of the globe will certainly be entertained, those who wish to explore science and diplomacy will find a unique set of challenges as well.

    ~ Dan Hagerty, Game Designer

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