Civilization 6: Gathering Storm

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Altaris
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Civilization 6: Gathering Storm

Post: # 94521Post Altaris
Sun Apr 07, 2019 5:23 pm

I recently picked up the latest Gathering Storm expansion for Civ 6, it's got the game in a pretty good spot. Most fun I've had playing Civ in a long time. Any of you guys play it? It could make for a really fun MP campaign, IMO, and something a little different from the norm. It's got some flexibility in how the turns are handled for MP as well, from how I understand it there's a cloud save option for PBEM where you can take an ongoing live MP game and play like an old-style PBEM, then go back to live when everyone's available. So if there was say a weekly game for 3 hrs, we played as many turns as we could get in, then converted over to cloud save and played a few turns throughout the week as time permits. Doing this would likely allow for a good game at Standard or even Epic speeds without taking forever to finish.

Mainly just putting this out as a feeler right now to see if anyone has any interest. I've always thought Civ would make for a fun competitive game but this is the first time I've seen a system which seems workable.

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aphrochine
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Re: Civilization 6: Gathering Storm

Post: # 94535Post aphrochine
Mon Apr 08, 2019 9:35 am

Interesting thought....switching between session and PBEM as warranted. Although, I haven't had any interest in Civ since IV. I bought and tried V, but honestly played maybe 20'ish hours.
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Altaris
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Re: Civilization 6: Gathering Storm

Post: # 94544Post Altaris
Mon Apr 08, 2019 2:10 pm

Civ V never really clicked with me. Not sure why, it just seemed to be lacking in soul. Mechanically it had a lot of good features, but didn't pull me in the way IV could do. I always felt like I had to play a min/max game in Civ V to have any chance of even getting by. Civ 6 has a better feel to it, especially with the expansions enabled. It keeps some nice ideas from Civ V, I particularly like there's some tactical element to the game now, which 4 didn't really have with it's stacks of doom.

From an MP standpoint, there's some aspects of 6 I find really intriguing. There's a World Congress which gets called every X number of turns from Medieval onwards, and you use a resource called Diplomatic Favor to vote on various agendas. These favors are gotten through out the game by vassalizing city-states, liberating conquered cities, upgrading your government types, and you can also trade it away (or for it) as parts of negotiations. Favor is used to vote on agendas, with a diminishing return system (1 vote = 0 diplo favor, 2 votes = 10 diplo favor, 3 votes = 20 diplo favor, etc) so one player cannot dominate the diplomacy phase by themselves.

There's also a Cassus Belli system in play now, where you generate Grievances of varying degrees depending on how justified the claim for war is. Excess Grievances cause you to lose Diplomatic Favor and can make your populations less happy (possibly to the level of revolt).

A lot of other really good stuff in this game I haven't touched on yet. It is Civ, so it's not as detailed or realistic as a PDS game, but they've made some interesting changes in 6 and its expansions to make it a more interesting experience. One good example is roads are no longer artitrarily built all over the map, instead trade routes generate them as they go between cities. So there's now a real tactical element to movement that follows a semblance of logic. Little touches like this are nice.

I did some more research on how MP games operate. Basically, in live internet play, you can set your turns to be Dynamic Turns, which means everyone does their orders at the same time if they are not fighting another human player. If 1 or more players are fighting against humans, there turns become sequential while those at peace stay simultaneous. This gets around one of the biggest issues Civ had with MP, IMO, as games could really bog down if playing sequential but were click-fests in simultaneous play - this method combines the best of both methods. Only downside I see is if you convert back to Play by Cloud it seems to go back to simultaneous, though as soon as you load back up to live I think you can set it back to Dynamic again. Would have to test it to see.

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Re: Civilization 6: Gathering Storm

Post: # 94672Post setloz
Mon Apr 15, 2019 8:32 am

I like this game a lot and wondered how it would fare in multiplayer. Unfortunately I didn't get the latest expansion, I'm waiting for a discounted offer. Mixed reviews on steam and 40 Euros does not look like worth the investment.

If I get it, perhaps we can try a multiplayer.
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aphrochine
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Re: Civilization 6: Gathering Storm

Post: # 94676Post aphrochine
Mon Apr 15, 2019 10:03 am

I would be interested in doing this, but honestly I wouldnt have the time until after Summer. I usually get a ton of extra time starting in August.
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Altaris
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Re: Civilization 6: Gathering Storm

Post: # 94684Post Altaris
Mon Apr 15, 2019 3:03 pm

Gathering Storm is a good expansion, though it's pricey at $40. Not sure why the negative reviews, it definitely makes the base game a lot better.

I've been playing with a map mod that generates semi-Terra world setups, complete with options to do an Old World/New World setup (you can also specify all Civs start in the Old World if you want). This makes for an interesting game dynamic, where the pre-Renaissance game sees the livable area get more and more cluttered, then there's a wave of colonization as the New World gets discovered. This could make for some rather cool multiplayer scenarios as long as there's some rules to keep someone from getting completely ganked (maybe something like a player's capital can never be taken and no razing player cities, with the casus belli options to dow to recapture cities this would make wars diplomatically dangerous for the victor).

The best part of Civ 6 is the district system. Your cities now actually utilize their tiles to build things like encampments, research campuses, harbors, canals, etc. These can be pillaged by enemies for gold, culture, science, etc, so there's spoils of war even in limited engagements.

I think it would be neat to see an epic game play out in MP and a world evolve from cave men to the modern era. Something a bit like the mega-campaign, but the entirety of human civilization instead :D

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aphrochine
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Re: Civilization 6: Gathering Storm

Post: # 94689Post aphrochine
Tue Apr 16, 2019 8:17 am

Altaris wrote:
Mon Apr 15, 2019 3:03 pm
...to do an Old World/New World setup (you can also specify all Civs start in the Old World if you want). This makes for an interesting game dynamic, where the pre-Renaissance game sees the livable area get more and more cluttered, then there's a wave of colonization as the New World gets discovered.
I've always found this start odd in previous iterations of CIV. The cluttering tends to favor the early era civs like Egypt and they rofl a couple of early CIVs and snowball from there. Also, in previous games the bordering system often pinned in certain CIVs preventing their expansion. I know this is kind of historical as Western Europe colonized with ease, while central and eastern europe struggled. In early iterations, this just lead to more snowballing and there wasnt any 'build tall' mechanics really. It was all about plopping down more and bigger cities. The anti-blobbing mechanics have always been weak.
Altaris wrote:
Mon Apr 15, 2019 3:03 pm
...cities now actually utilize their tiles to build things like encampments, research campuses, harbors, canals, etc. These can be pillaged by enemies for gold, culture, science, etc, so there's spoils of war even in limited engagements.
I think this is how CIV5 worked....I cant remember. It was a good change and gave some life to the early game as it made it more dynamic and opened up differing unit options than Swordsman + Catapult.
Altaris wrote:
Mon Apr 15, 2019 3:03 pm
...to see an epic game play out in MP and a world evolve from cave men to the modern era. Something a bit like the mega-campaign, but the entirety of human civilization instead :D
Not sure the settings of CIV6, but if you play the marathon version of the game, something like 1000 turns, then you actually get to spend enough time in each era to make it worth it. Shorter set ups favor tech rushing to much, and help lead to the age old CIV problem of Phalanx's vs Tanks.

Still, food for thought.
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pedal2000
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Re: Civilization 6: Gathering Storm

Post: # 94699Post pedal2000
Tue Apr 16, 2019 3:01 pm

aphrochine wrote:
Mon Apr 08, 2019 9:35 am
Interesting thought....switching between session and PBEM as warranted. Although, I haven't had any interest in Civ since IV. I bought and tried V, but honestly played maybe 20'ish hours.
The PBEM is actually pretty slick - it is a log in system. So you'd effectively be able to log in when you had time, take your turn, log out. The save doesn't have to be sent back and forth or anything, the Cloud holds it.

I'd be down Alt. Alternatively, my Wednesday night group is currently doing Sup Com; but Civ 6 is on the table of discussion for our next 'long term' game. Probably in the next couple weeks we'll be picking it out and starting it up.
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Altaris
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Re: Civilization 6: Gathering Storm

Post: # 94702Post Altaris
Tue Apr 16, 2019 6:10 pm

If you guys start a Wednesday night game I'd likely be able to join it. We are currently playing EU4 on Wednesday nights but that'll be wrapping up in a few weeks and we can reschedule it for the last few sessions if need be. Keep me posted, I'm definitely interested in finding a group who plays weekly on the same campaign (I can find other Civ groups, but they like to do games in 1 sitting at ultra fast Online Speed - fast being subjective, as that's still like 8-9 hours to play it in one go).

I agree the PBEM is set up nicely, though for a game of this length not sure how practical it will actually be. Since the turns go sequentially in PBEM, you'd likely need to have it structured so Player 1 can typically play turns earliest in day, followed by Player 2, Player 3, etc. Otherwise, you'd have 1 turn potentially taking days to go by waiting on other people. But from what I've read you can easily convert the saves from PBEM to live online play, so it could work having a live session each week and doing PBEM in between to keep things rolling.

Aphro, you've got some valid points, some of these are drawbacks to any strategy game, some are particular issues of Civ. Civ 6 is an improvement on a lot of the old Civ 4 style issues, mainly due to expanding the game's scope with things like districts, which serve as "mini-city" tiles so you can add harbors to the coastline of a landlocked city's borders, or use encampments to provide some defensive positions. One thing Civ really gets wrong, IMO, is no limit on how far a unit can move, especially in early game. If you have enough open borders and coastline, you can essentially send a galley to scout out the entirety of the world, which seems... wrong. I played a game where I imposed a house rule on myself that I had to move units back towards friendly territory if there were ever more than 1 turn's movement away from friendly territory, it was an interesting experiment and kept me from simply going all over the place at whim. Those tough early era units lose some of their potency when they can't simply expand out all over the continent at a whim in 3000 B.C.

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Re: Civilization 6: Gathering Storm

Post: # 94739Post Altaris
Fri Apr 19, 2019 6:46 pm

I've been playing around with a LUA script for some basic attrition in neutral/hostile territory, which adds some complexity to the game I like. Basically it works by applying a bit of damage any time a unit moves outside friendly territory (friendly being one's own territory, city-state territory where you hold suzerainity influence, or an allied player's territory). The script traces the distance a unit moves to the nearest friendly city if outside friendly borders, and applies scaled damage based on how far away the city is and what it's population is (so a large city expands it's "supply" value further). The damage is also divided by the number of moves a unit has, so a scout takes less damage than a warrior (moves 3 vs 2).

Road movement multiplier is also applied to the damage, so roads always mitigate some damage, and mitigate it more as eras and transportation advances.

The end result is nice, it's not really noticeable while close to your cities, but if you move out more than 8-10 tiles from your friendly cities you'll start taking some real damage.

Still doing some testing and tweaking to it, but I like how it's working so far. Makes that mad rush expansion in early game much less prevalent. Also balances out some of those uber powered early units, as while they are still strong, you can't just expand across the map at lightning speed with this script active.

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