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[Freeciv-Dev] Re: civ 3 impressions

[Freeciv-Dev] Re: civ 3 impressions

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To: freeciv-dev@xxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [Freeciv-Dev] Re: civ 3 impressions
From: "Mike Jing" <miky40@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Thu, 08 Nov 2001 16:19:02 -0500
Reply-to: mike_jing@xxxxxxxxx

Per I. Mathisen <Per.Inge.Mathisen@xxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

Okay, just some thoughts from playing civ 3 a few hours. I've always been playing big maps, and in the late stages of this game, my computer started crawling as the AIs and I settled the entire world and began moving our huge armies around. By around 1400 AD the game became practically unplayable, at least until I've bought myself more RAM.

The speed of Civ3 is a real problem, although since I usually play standard maps so it is probably not as bad. Just something to watch out when someone get to rewrite the AI in Freeciv.

So. Big cities in civ 3 are way better than in freeciv and civ 2. The culture system means their reach expands as the city grows, and allows it to use more resource tiles. Very good. I really like culture. Paying two citizens for a settler really hurts early in the game, but as cities reach the Aqueduct and Hospital limits, making settlers and workers is the only sane thing to do while you wait for the necessary tech - and Hospital is a long wait.

It does seem smallpox is not as powerful in Civ3 as it was in Freeciv or Civ2, although I am not sure if it is really "cured". I am eager to see some of these features implemented and tested in Freeciv.

Wonders affect continents and world less, and those who do usually have their own tech to make them hard to acquire. Bach's requires Music Theory, for example, which only gives you Bach's. Perhaps this is a way to make it harder to get to the best of freeciv's wonders?

Wonders are indeed more balanced, which is a very good thing.

Catapults and cannons now fire ranged attacks, and do not use normal attacks. They don't even have defence values, and can be captured. I didn't really like this. Built a few experimental units and then went back to only normal units.

Ship bombardment is very well implemented -- no more ironclads emptying cities for horsemen. But catapults and cannons are much less useful, so are cruise misiles. And the nuke is a joke and a total waste of shields. The new way Fighters and bombers work is very good, but they should be allowed to sink ships.

Every player type has two characteristics (commercial, industrious,
militaristic, expansionist or scientific) that gives it in-game bonuses and has one unique unit type that it can build (usually a variation on a normal unit). I liked that. The Greeks, for example, start the game with a 1/3/1 Hoplite unit. The French can build 3/4/1 Musketeers when they get Salpeter resource and Gunpowder tech. But I would think this is rather hopeless for us to adopt, since we have so many nations.

Civ specific abilities are fun, but I prefer a level playing field, so I won't miss this feature in Freeciv, especially since I prefer to play MP.

Resource management and trade is a lot better than previous civs. No more caravans. Make trade routes by building roads. Building a road to a resource within a city's range gives all cities connected to that road access to this resource. Some resources are needed to build some units and others give more luxuries. Really good idea.

Also no more rushing wonders with caravans. Another reason why it's harder to get all the wonders for yourself. I also like the resource system, but some of the strategic resources carry so much weight that it might very well unbalance the game.

There is no tax rate any more. Good riddance. I always hated fiddling with that.

Well, set the sicience and entertainment rates and whatever left goes into tax.

Units no longer require production upkeep. Nor food. Only gold. Whoa. This is perhaps what I disliked the most, since it allows way too many units to be built, and I had to build a lot myself for defence and attack. The result was a micromanagement nightmare.

I actually love this feature, mostly because it takes away a huge advatage from smallpox players. Also no food upkeep means you can actually afford to improve the terrain without throttling city growth. Now we just need better automatic workers.

At lower difficulty levels, the AI is useless and builds cities all over the map, even where there is totally no point in doing so. It also build ridiculously large armies that it moves around all the map all the time, hogging the CPU.

So far I have only played at the Regent "formerly known as Prince" level, where the AI doesn't get any bonus or handicap, and I am impressed. In my last game as the Romans, I stayed in Monarchy and reduced the Egyptians to a single city in a desert with knights, and grabe some more land from the Aztecs and the Greeks to become the largest civ. Then I made peace and switched to Republic and started to concentrate on buiding up the new cities. Suddenly the Greeks and the Aztecs signed a military alliance and declared war on me. While the Aztecs were sending lots of cavalry and knights into my territory and started pillaging, the greeks sent a raiding party by boat behind the lines and captured one of my least defended cities, cutting off my supply lines. That was a great attack.

Later in the game you can research "armies", which is a way to unite several units into a stack. You can also get "leaders". I never got around to test this.

I've got several great leaders, and they are the only way to rush a wonder. You can also build "armies" with them, but they are not all that powerful, which is good since it won't unbalance the game.

All in all I think there are lot of good ideas there.

Agreed.  And I cant wait to play with the Civ3 ruleset!


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