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  • Apolyton University Mod (Thread II)

    This thread hosts the Apolyton University mod.

    Apolyton University is a school of strategy, where students sharpen their Civ3 skills and share their experiences in a series of thematic games. When playing an Apolyton University game, gaining and sharing knowledge is more important than getting a high score, or even winning the game. Participants are encouraged to share their strategy after the game, and even to try several attempts.

    For single-player games we have developed this AU mod, whose main purpose is to challenge the player with a need for deeper strategy. To accomplish that goal, the mod tries to improve the AI and present the player with more strategic decisions, while changing as little as possible.

    The following two posts contain the readme of the mod. Please post your comments and suggestions for changes for the next AU game. Previous discussions can be found in the original and first PTW thread for the mod. There is also a discussion on the multi-player version of this mod.
    Attached Files
    Last edited by alexman; March 18, 2003, 19:54.

  • #2
    AU mod readme (part 1)

    Code:
    
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
                         APOLYTON UNIVERSITY MOD 1.17
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
                  (based on player 1's Patch Suggestion Mod)
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    This MOD serves as a base for the Apolyton University curriculum, which 
    aims to improve the skills of participants through discussion of their 
    strategy in a series of common games.
    
    The goals of this MOD (in rough order of importance) are to:
    - Improve the AI.
    - Present the player with more strategic decisions.
    - Change as little as possible, to preserve the unmodded Civ3 flavor.
    - Preserve historical accuracy.
    - Reduce micromanagement. 
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    
    GROUND UNITS
    ------------
    
    Action:  Increased attack of Riflemen by 1
             Increased attack of Infantry and Guerillas by 2
    Reason:  Make these units better-used by the AI.
    Comment: The AI sometimes uses these units for attack.
    
    Action:  Increased attack and defense of Marines and Paratroopers by 2
    Reason:  To make these units more valuable, and the optional techs
             tied to them worth researching.
    Comment: They are as expensive as Tanks, yet their stats are still 
             much lower.
    
    Action:  Reduced defense of Modern Armor by 2
    Reason:  To encourage combined arms.
    Comment: The AI protects its offense-flagged units with defensive units 
             anyway. Modern Armor was too good for its cost (and still is).
    
    Action:  Added zero-range bombard ability to Archers (2), Bowmen (2), 
             Longbowmen (4), and Guerillas (8).
             Added Zone of Control to guerillas.
    Reason:  To make Archers, Longbowmen, and Guerillas worth building at 
             the same time as Swordsmen, Medieval Infantry, and Infantry.
    Comment: Combined Arms! Stacks of units with archers have some benefit. 
             The AI often puts archers in its cities for counterattack.
             The AI sometimes builds Guerillas, even with access to rubber.
    
    Action:  Increased cost of Cannon and Hwach'a by 20, and their ROF by 1
    Reason:  To balance this unit compared to other ground bombard units.
    Comment: Under the standard rules, catapults are always more cost-
             effective than cannons. With this change, cannons are more 
             cost-effective when bombarding a defender of strength 8 and 
             above. Increased cost and ROF means that you need less units
             to do the same amount of damage (less micromanagement).
    
    Action:  Keshiks gain ability to ignore movement penalties on Hills. 
             Elephants gain ability to ignore movement penalties in Jungles.
    Reason:  To strengthen these rather weak unique units.
    Comment: How can a Keshik take more time to move in mountains than in 
             hills? Elephants are have familiarity and endurance in jungles.
    
    Action:  Reduced cost of Conquistador by 10
    Reason:  To strengthen this unique unit without making knights obsolete.
    Comment: They replace 20-cost explorers, after all.
    
    Action:  Increased bombard range of Cruise Missile by 2 and ROF by 1
    Reason:  To strengthen this unit, since fighters now have lethal bombard
    Comment: Civilopedia says Cruise Missiles have a range of hundreds of 
             miles. ROF=4 means it has an extra shot and a chance to kill 
             healthy veteran units.
    
    Action:  Cruise Missiles can no longer be loaded into transports.
    Reason:  To remove an exploit used only by human players.
    Comment: This unit could be moved into transports, but not loaded from 
             cities. The AI did not know to use this exploit.
    
    Action:  Added airlift flag to Catapult, Cannon, Hwach'a, Artillery, 
             Radar Artillery, Explorer, Scout, Leader.
    Reason:  To reduce micromanagement. 
    Comment: You can airlift tanks, why not cannons? Leaders can use planes.
    
    Action:  Removed explore command from Leader, Catapult, Cannon, Hwach'a, 
             Artillery, Radar Artillery,  Settler, Worker.
    Reason:  These units are not meant for exploring territory.
    Comment: Minor point. Reduces erroneous commands.
    
    Action:  Celts can no longer build Medieval Infantry
    Reason:  To prevent the AI from upgrading Gallic Swordsmen
    Comment: Gallic Swordsmen are cheaper than Med. Infantry, so you lose
             value towards the eventual Guerilla upgrade when upgrading.
             The AI always upgrade their UU after having triggered their GA.
    
    
    AIR UNITS
    ---------
             
    Action:  Increased ROF of Fighters and Jet Fighters by 1
             Gave all fighters lethal sea bombard (and AI air bombard flag)
             In addition, F-15 and Stealth Fighter have lethal land bombard
    Reason:  To balance fighters versus bombers.
    Comment: Fighters are now effective for finishing off weak targets. 
             Carriers with Fighters become a naval offensive threat. 
             Stealth Fighters are a viable alternative to Stealth Bombers. 
             The following table shows the change in cost-effectiveness of 
             each air unit in bombarding.
    
    Action:  Increased Helicopter, Paratrooper, and Bomber range by 2
             Increased transport capacity of Helicopter by 1
    Reason:  To make these units more useful.
    Comment: It is now somewhat easier to land troops behind enemy lines. 
             Increased naval movement of this mod without this change would 
             have made it easier for ships to stay out of bomber range.
    
    NAVAL UNITS
    -----------
    
    Action:  Added one movement point to all ships after Industrialization.
    Reason:  To strengthen naval units and to reduce micromanagement.
    Comment: Naval movement was too low compared to late-game land and air 
             movement.
    
    Action:  Added one additional movement point to Carrier
    Reason:  To reduce micromanagement of carrier protection.
    Comment: Battleships and Carriers do not have a big difference in speed 
             in real life.
    
    Action:  Reduced the cost of the Privateer by 20
             Added one movement point to Privateer.
    Reason:  To make this unit more useful
    Comment: It was not a cost-effective unit. Privateers should be cheaper 
             than the more powerful Frigates.
    
    Action:  Moved prerequisite of the Ironclad to Industrialization.
             Increased cost of Ironclad by 20.
             Increased attack strength of Frigate and Wan-O-War by 1.
    Reason:  To make Frigates more useful.
    Comment: Frigates became obsolete too fast. Ironclads were more cost-
             effective for bombarding than Battleships.
    
    Action:  Ironclad upgrades to Battleship
    Reason:  To compensate for reducing the life of this unit by making it 
             available later.
    Comment: Civilopedia says that the ironclad was "the forerunner of the 
             modern battleship".
    
    Action:  Frigate, Privateer, and Man-O-War upgrade to Destroyer
    Reason:  To encourage building these units
    Comment: The upgrade cost is significant.
    
    Action:  Increased attack of Submarines and Nuclear Subs by 2
    Reason:  To make these units (and hence AEGIS) more effective.
    Comment: Makes them more dangerous, but still vulnerable if attacked.
    
    Action:  Galleys use 2 movement points to enter Ocean.
    Reason:  To make the Great Lighthouse less unbalancing on island maps 
             To make Caravels more powerful for exploring
    Comment: Humans recognize the value of the G. Lighthouse and build it 
             at all costs when isolated. The AI has no such priority.
             Makes suicide exploration missions by humans less effective.
             Delays intercontinental contacts and settling of empty 
             continents. This might make Explorers more useful.
    
    Action:  Increased bombard strength of Battleships, and AEGIS by 2.
    Reason:  To balance the bombard effectiveness of naval units.
    Comment: Ironclads, Destroyers, and Frigates were more cost-effective 
             bombard units than Battleships.
    
    IMPROVEMENTS AND WONDERS
    ------------------------
    
    Action:  Added Communism-specific improvement (Secret Police).
             Reduces corruption, veteran units, cost 40, zero upkeep. 
    Reason:  To make Communism a competitive war-time government.
    Comment: Monarchy with a good FP placement is still better than 
             Communism. But when built in every city, this improvement 
             brings Communism to the level of Monarchy for empires with
             a bad FP placement (such as most AI empires).
    
    Action:  Great Wall now also adds city walls to all towns in continent.
    Reason:  To make this wonder worth building.
    Comment: This will mainly affect the outskirts of your empire (just 
             like the real Great Wall), since core cities will be larger 
             than size-6 after Construction. 
    
    Action:  Increased happy faces for Cure for Cancer by 2
    Reason:  To make this wonder worth building.
    Comment: In the late game, when most empires have access to 6-8 
             luxuries, 1000 shields for one happy face is just not worth it.
    
    Action:  Longevity requires Sanitation instead of Genetics
             Reduced cost by 200
    Reason:  To make this wonder worth building.
    Comment: By the time of Genetics, most cities are already at max size
    
    Action:  Military Academy no longer requires a victorious Army.
    Reason:  To make Armies more common, and war for leaders less attractive
    Comment: The Heroic Epic still requires a victorious Army. 
    
    Action:  SS Life Support needs Recycling instead of Superconductor
    Reason:  To force players to research more modern techs before launching
    Comment: The civilopedia mentions the importance of recycling for this.
    
    Action:  SS Stasis Chamber needs Genetics instead of Synthetic Fibers
    Reason:  To force players to research more modern techs before launching
    Comment: Cryogenics need an understanding of biology, including Genetics
    
    Action:  SS Docking Bay requires Robotics instead of Space Flight
    Reason:  To force players to research more modern techs before launching
    Comment: Just say you need robotic arms to load the docking bay.
    
    Action:  Increased the cost of all SS components by 50%
    Reason:  To make Manufacturing Plants a viable option.
    Comment: The AI still places a high priority on building spaceship parts
    
    Action:  Increased the upkeep of Research Labs by 1
             Increased cost of Research Labs by 40
    Reason:  To make building this improvement less of an obvious choice.
    Comment: The AI benefits as it generally builds these after the human.
    
    GOVERNMENTS
    --------------
    
    Actions: Increased corruption for Republic from Nuisance to Problematic.
             Increased worker speed by 1 for Communism.
             Increased experience of Communist Spies/Diplomats by one level.
             Added 1 free unit per city for Democracy.
             Added 2 free units per metropolis for Democracy.
             Reduced all resistance modifiers versus Communism by 5.
             Doubled assimilation chance for Communism.
    Reason:  To reduce the relative effectiveness of Republic 
             and the relative weakness of Communism
    Comment: Non-religious civs rarely had a reason to be in any other form 
             of government than Republic. Communism was never worth it, 
             even for religious civs.
    
    GLOBAL CHANGES
    --------------
    
    Action:  Doubled value of Wealth
    Reason:  To make this build option sometimes worth choosing.
    Comment: It's still better to build units and disbanding them in corrupt 
             cities (instead of using Wealth and rush-buying), but at least 
             now Wealth is more useful than it used to be.
    
    Action:  Doubled effect of taxmen and scientists.
    Reason:  To encourage 20+ size cities.
    Comment: This might benefit the human more than the AI for cities under 
             max-size, and it adds some micromanagement. On the hand, having 
             a few large cities rather than many small ones reduces 
             micromanagement, and presents the player with another decision.
    
    Action:  Doubled effect of entertainers
    Reason:  To help the AI
    Comment: The AI uses entertainers instead of the luxury slider. 
    
    Action:  Reduced cost of propaganda by 50%
    Reason:  To make this option worth pursuing.
    Comment: Playtesting has indicated that this reduction is not too much.
    
    Action:  Taxmen require currency
             Scientists require Mathematics
    Reason:  To increase the AI-value of these technologies.
    Comment: Marketplaces are important, often delayed to be built by the AI 
             because of the low priority of currency. Mathematics was often 
             ignored by the AI until late.
    
    Action:  Reduced appearance ratio of all strategic resources by 25%.
    Reason:  To help create "killer-AIs"
    Comment: AI civs without access to resources can be conquered easier, 
             leaving fewer but stronger opponents.
    
    Action:  Increased optimal number of cities for all map sizes by 50%
             Reduced percentage of optimal cities for all levels by 1/3
    Reason:  To make the AI more aggressive in pursuing land
    Comment: Is transparent to the human player, except for the fact that
             in delays the availability of the FP. Encourages the larger AI
             empires to capture (not raze) cities. May induce the AI to win 
             by domination. The behavior of the AI in expanding was not 
             changed after Firaxis made courthouses and police stations 
             increase the OCN by 25% each.
    
    Action:  Printing Press is now a required technology
    Reason:  To help the AI in the tech race.
    Comment: The AI wasted time researching this empty technology while
             humans usually skipped it and moved on to the Industrial Era.
    
    Action:  Reduced cost of Mathematics by 4.
             Increased cost of Map Making by 4.
    Reason:  To encourage the AI to research Mathematics sooner.
    Comment: The fact that the human player knew that the AI didn't 
             research Mathemetics until late, gave him an extra advantage 
             over the AI. The Map Making increase keeps the Ancient-era
             research cost constant.
    

    Last edited by alexman; March 18, 2003, 19:49.

    Comment


    • #3
      Code:
      
      
      CHANGES TO AI
      -------------
      
      Action:  Added "Enables Alliances" ability to Code of Laws, Literature,
               Republic, Electricity, Atomic Theory, Radio, Nuclear Power
               Added "Enables Right of Passage Treaties" to Literature,
               Electricity, and Medicine
               Added "Enables Communication Trading" ability to Literature and
               Medicine
      Reason:  To make the AI emphasize these technologies more.
      Comment: These abilities make no difference in gameplay, since they are 
               already given by Writing (a prerequisite of all of them)
      
      Action:  Added "Enables Military Alliances" ability to Polytheism
      Reason:  To help Religious AI civs get to Monarchy sooner.
      Comment: Writing still also gives Alliances, since you need an embassy 
               to form an alliance. Even though there is an (almost 
               negligible) effect on gameplay, this is more a trick to get the 
               AI to research Polytheism.
      
      Action:  Removed the AI offense flag from Mech. Infantry, Impi, Numidian
               Mercenary, Musketeer.
      Reason:  To prevent the AI from attacking with these units.
      Comment: Each unit can have only one AI strategy, so Carthage and Zulu 
               used to build their defensive UU for part of their offense.
               Infantry built for attack is converted to a defensive role when
               Upgraded. This makes the AI have to build new offensive units, 
               and Tanks are always available whenever Mech. Infantry is.
      
      Action:  Increased "percentage of optimal cities" for the AI by 50%
      Reason:  To compensate for poor AI Forbidden Palace placement.
      Comment: Chieftain level is identical to Regent, except for this value.
               AI plays at this level, which is no longer meant for the human.
      
      Action:  Added "Emphasize Production" to all AI civilizations.
      Reason:  To compensate for rapid AI population growth.
      Comment: The AI often grows its cities too fast and has to compensate by 
               assigning entertainers. Large unproductive cities are not good.
      
      Action:  Changed AI build-often list as shown below
               Increased aggression of Iroquois and Chinese by 2
               Decreased aggression of Babylon by 2
      Reason:  To bring AI behavior closer to what expert human players do
      Comment: Added production to all civs to encourage factories. Added 
               trade to all civs to encourage harbors and marketplaces. 
               Removed growth from all civs because the AI already emphasizes 
               growth too much. Encouraging AI to take advantage of their 
               traits: Scientific have science flagged, Religious have 
               happiness, Militaristic have units. Civs that are not 
               Scientific, not Religious, and not Militaristic, build Culture.
      
      ------------------------------------------------------------------------
        Civ Agg Off Def Art Stl Wrk Nav Air Gth Prd Hap Sci Wlt Trd Epl Clt
      ------------------------------------------------------------------------
        Rom  4   X   X                       -   X               +
        Egy  3                               -   X   +           +       -
        Gre  3                       X           +       X       X       -
        Bab 4->2                                 +       -       +       X
        Ger  5   X                               +       X       +       -
        Rus  4                           X   -   +       X       +
        Chn 2->4 +                           -   X       -       +
        USA  3                           X   -   X               +       X
        Jpn  4   X                   X           +   X           +
        Fra  1                                   +   -           X       X
        Ind  1                               -   +   +       X   X       -
        Per  4   X                               +       +   -   X
        Azt  4   X                               +   X           +
        Zul  5   X                               +               +
        Iro 2->4 +                           -   +   X           +   -
        Eng  3                       X           +           X   X       X
        Mgl  5   X                               X               +
        Spn  3                       X           +   +       -   X   -
        Sca  4   X                   X           +               +
        Ott  3          X                        +   -   +       +
        Cel  4   X                               +   +           X       -
        Ara  4                               -   +   +           +       -
        Car  2                       X           +               X       +
        Kor  2          +                        +       +   -   X
      
        X = build often
        - = removed
        + = added
      ------------------------------------------------------------------------
      
      VERSION HISTORY
      
      1.11
      ----
      Added Scenario Description
      Moved Mathematics in F6 screen so it no longer overlaps with Philosophy
      Research labs now really cost 240, as mentioned in readme.
      
      1.12
      ----
      Replaced Growth by Production for Iroquois, for real this time.
      Galleys use 2 movement points to enter Ocean.
      
      1.13
      ----
      Guerillas have zero-range bombard (8)
      Increased attack of Guerillas to 8
      Bombard strength of F-15 and Stealth Fighters back to original (4)
      Bombard strength of Jet Fighters back to original (2)
      Cost of Stealth Bomber back to original (240)
      Increased aggression of Iroquois and Chinese to 4
      Reduced aggression of Babylonians to 2
      Chinese offensive units are a build-often item
      Increased optimal number of cities for all map sizes by 50%
      Reduced percent of optimal number of cities for all levels by 1/3
      Replaced Diplomats by Alliances in all techs after Writing
      
      1.14
      ----
      Removed wheeled ability from all units where it was previously added
      Radar Artillery back to original (1 move, no oil/rubber)
      All ground artillery now has defense strength of 1.
      Upkeep of Banks back to original (1).
      Movement of Frigate back to original (4).
      Movement of Privateer reduced to 4.
      Increased attack strength of Frigate and Man-O-War by 1.
      Increased cost of Ironclad to 100.
      Battleship and AEGIS ROF back to original (2).
      Increased bombard strength of Battleship and AEGIS by 2.
      Removed AI offense strategy from Impi and Numidian Mercenary.
      Unit support for Communism and Monarchy back to original.
      Reduced distance corruption for Communism and Despotism by 1/3.
      Increased experience of Spies and Diplomats for Communism by one level.
      Reduced resistance modifier of Communism vs all governments by 5.
      Increased assimilation chance for Communism to 8%.
      Cruise missiles can no longer be loaded into transports.
      
      1.15
      ----
      Reduced appearance ratio of strategic resources by 25%.
      Removed corruption changes to Communism and Despotism.
      
      1.16
      ----
      Ground bombard units no longer have a defense strength.
      Koreans can now capture cannons.
      Added ZOC to guerillas.
      Added Communism-specific building (Secret Police).
      Removed "explore" command from several units not meant to explore.
      
      1.17
      ----
      Musketeer back to original stats
      Fixed Catapult upgrade bug
      Pyramids require Masonry (back to stock)
      Printing Press no longer optional
      Printing Press no longer enables communication trading
      Electricity and Medicine allow right of passage
      Medicine allows communication trading
      Celts can no longer build Medieval Infantry
      Reduced cost of Mathematics by 4
      Increased cost of Map Making by 4
      
      Last edited by alexman; March 18, 2003, 19:50.

      Comment


      • #4
        There are currently several changes under consideration for version 1.17.
        • Restore original stats to French Musketeer. The two movement points, instead of the extra attack factor, has made France perhaps too powerful, as the commercial trait has been improved.
        • Remove the optional status from several Middle Age and Industrial Age technologies. Printing Press, Navigation, Nationalism, Sanitation, Advanced Flight, and Amphibious Wafare. The AI usually researches these optional technologies, even if they are not useful, thus allowing the human to get an advantage by speeding through the tech tree to the next age. On the other hand, removing the optional status also removes options to the human, which is against another of the mod's goals.
        • Move Pyramids back to Masonry. The change was made to help the AI choose Mathematics so it's not so easy for the human to get this technology and then get rich by trading it. But the change in gameplay, along with the fact that the AI gets started on the Pyramids later perhaps make the change a bad idea for this mod.
        • Remove zero-range bombard ability from archers. This ability has the undesirable effect of helping early human archer rushes. On the other hand, it also helps the AI who build Archers even when Swordsmen are available, and adds an element of combined-arms warfare to the ancient age.
        • Celts can no longer build Medieval Infantry. Gallic Swordsmen should not "upgrade" to Medieval Infantry, as the latter are cheaper. The would upgrade directly to Guerillas.
        • Fix catapult upgrade bug. They should upgrade to cannon.
        Last edited by alexman; March 17, 2003, 11:03.

        Comment


        • #5
          alexman, since Nathan and I are (I believe) at the point of "agreeing to disagree" on the required/optional status of some techs, I would like to hear your input on this.

          All other changes you proposed in the thread above I'm in agreement with, although you can put me down for "no preference" on the Archer issue.


          Dominae
          And her eyes have all the seeming of a demon's that is dreaming...

          Comment


          • #6
            In addition to the above, Catt also proposed to do something about the "industrial corridor", the branch of the tech tree from Scientific Method to Electronics, which often enables the human player to get a permenant tech lead by getting the ToE and then catapult him to Electronics for the Hoover Dam.

            I don't see any obvious solution to this, other than what we have already done, which is to make the AI emphasize Electricity and Atomic Theory more.

            As for the optional techs debate, I agree that optional techs should have some significant advantage attached to them. Otherwise, the human (who can tell when it is worth researching a tech and when it isn't) gets an advantage. If the AI prioritizes the optional tech (e.g. Nationalism), the human can take a shortcut through the tech tree and pick up that tech later. If the AI doesn't emphasize it enough (Printing Press), the human can catch up to the AI by researching it first and trading it to the AI.

            In deciding which optional techs to make required, I think we need to answer one question: Is the benefit of getting this optional technology useful to the human under any reasonable set of circumstances in a Civ3 game? If the aswer is "no", then the technology should be made required, or it should have some extra benefit attached to it. If the answer is "yes", then the optional tech should stay optional.

            Going by this method, I would definitely be in favor of making Prinitng Press required. Note that if we do remove the optional status from Printing Press, we will remove the "Communications Trading" ability which was added in a previous version to make the AI emphasize this tech more, so the human wouldn't get it so easily at a 40 turn pace.

            Optional technologies that allow Wonders are just fine, IMHO. (Music Theory, Free Artistry, Economics, Navigation, Sanitation). If the human delays in getting them, he usually misses the Wonder.

            I'm still trying to decide what I think about changing the other proposed technologies. I would like it better if we could somehow make these technologies more useful instead of making them required.

            For example, I like the solution of moving airfields to Advanced Flight. What about doing something similar to Amphibious Warfare, like allow transports(!)?

            Does getting courthouses and spies an age or so later provide enough of a missed advantage to justify not skipping them sometimes? Probably yes, when the human has not yet clinched the game.

            I still would like to find some way of making the AI research Mathematics, since we are removing the Pyramids.

            Comment


            • #7
              When is the last time you've heard of a battleship navigator pulling out his sextant to take a sighting by the stars (except maybe as part of a hobby)? The tech "Magnetism" reflects a fundamental change in the tools used to navigate, a change which rendered the tools previously used no longer necessary. Had the earlier tools not been invented prior to the discovery of the later ones, there would have been no point to their ever being invented at all. I think that's the historical basis underlying Navigation's optional nature
              But what historical sense is there in discovering a bunch of industrial age techs and then going back to Navigation when you decide that you want a few more luxury trade routes?

              If we change it or not, I'm fine. My points were to say that I don't have a problem changing it (or just testing it) if we can show some increase in AI or valid human strategic options, because I think it makes good sense from a realism point of view, and has very little gameplay impact.

              Comment


              • #8
                What would people think of removing Free Artistry and Shakespeare's Theater from the AU Mod version of the game? I'm not sure I've ever heard of a human player's regarding Free Artistry as worth researching except maybe as part of a goal of grabbing as many wonders as possible, so I think that's one optional tech that could be removed to help the AI avoid "wasteful" research with no significant negative ramifications for the human player.

                By the way, it occurs to me that the AI is absolutely right to make Nationalism a high priority in the early industrial era. Imagine how much more we humans could do with cavalry if it didn't! The reason we can get away with skipping Nationalism so easily is that the AI doesn't mount the kind of massive cavalry operations that some of us do.

                Nathan

                Comment


                • #9
                  Removing a tech and a Wonder altogether is in my mind the epitome of a drastic change. Perhaps we could make Free Artistry cost significantly less (say, from 52 to 36 or even 26), and improve Shakespeare's (12 Happy faces, instead of 8)?


                  Dominae
                  And her eyes have all the seeming of a demon's that is dreaming...

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Fosse


                    But what historical sense is there in discovering a bunch of industrial age techs and then going back to Navigation when you decide that you want a few more luxury trade routes?
                    Magnetism and Navigation provide identical abilities in terms of safe ocean travel and trade routes across oceans. Navigation's advantage in that regard is that it can provide those abilities quite a bit earlier in the game if a player is a lot farther along the top part of the tech tree than along the bottom part. The only thing truly unique to Navigation is the ability to build the Magellan's Voyage wonder.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Just throwing out another idea here:

                      Maybe we could make Guerillas available with Electricity instead of Replaceable Parts. I believe this would make Electricity a lot more attractive to the AI, without really changing the game much for the human player (unless Guerillas are a lot better than I think).


                      Dominae
                      And her eyes have all the seeming of a demon's that is dreaming...

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by nbarclay


                        Magnetism and Navigation provide identical abilities in terms of safe ocean travel and trade routes across oceans. Navigation's advantage in that regard is that it can provide those abilities quite a bit earlier in the game if a player is a lot farther along the top part of the tech tree than along the bottom part. The only thing truly unique to Navigation is the ability to build the Magellan's Voyage wonder.
                        My mistake. Looking at it that way, the wonder is enough to justify the optional tech, as long as the AI isn't hurting itself by researching it when the human chooses to skip it.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          ... removing Free Artistry and Shakespeare's Theater from the AU Mod version of the game? ...
                          Shakespeare's Theatre is very important to the AI. All those extra workers (or at least scientists) that don't have to be entertainers in a huge metro.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            If we change to the Guerilla to require Electricity, it will have two effects on the AI:

                            1) Electricity will become the second most desirable Industrial tech to the AI after Nationalism, as it will now allow an offensive and defensive unit that doesn't require resources. This is a good thing, I think, as it paves the way for Scientific Method. The AI will no longer choose to research Industrialization until later, but I think this is also OK, since it doesn't immediately build factories anyway.
                            2) The AI might start building the Guerillas immediately, as it won't yet have Infantry available. This is bad because guerillas don't upgrade, but hopefully it will get Replaceable parts soon, so it will not be going on for long.

                            I think it's best not to incorporate the change because there is another way to achieve the same effect. We have already made the AI more likely to go for Electricity by adding the "Enables Alliances" flag. We could add more such flags ("ROP" for example) to make the technology virtually always more desirable than Industrialization to the AI.

                            As for Free Artistry, I have played some games where even the AI didn't research it until the Modern Era, so I'm not so sure it's something that needs change.

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                            • #15
                              I assume lowering the cost of Free Artistry would have the unintended side effect of making it more attractive for AIs to research it?

                              I'm not inclined to dismiss the idea of Free Artistry as a possible source of unwanted delays for AIs just because in "some" games, the AI civs don't research it until the modern era. What about the other games? On the other hand, Free Artistry's potential trade value might make researching it less stupid than it appears to be at first glance (and the same could go for other optional techs). Then again, AIs aren't exactly the shrewdest bargainers in the world.

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