Another thread got me thinking about what I liked about Alpha Centuri. It has a flavour for sure, and it's an aquired taste! I liked its 'flavour' so much that I really didn't want to stop playing, but it had such an awful bug that I gave up and switched to Freeciv. Fully loaded transport ships would just vanish with all the units on board. I like to play maps with lots of ocean and the players all on different continents, so it was dreadful.
I'm enjoying playing Freeciv now. It's much more pleasant to look at green grass instead of red fungus for one thing, but I miss a few of the features of Alpha Centauri. I'm wondering what it would take to implement those features individually. The thing I most want is kinda ridiculous, but the other two things might be feasible. I'm curious to learn if they are.
The big one is the faction leaders with their personalities and mug shots, and the diplomacy system with the different things they say. It's more personal. I guess it's a whole different field to the existing work that's been done on Freeciv, requiring writers and portrait artists. Artists could be commissioned, mug shots can be cheap if you don't mind slightly cartoony styles, but writers... I don't know. It's not just writing, there are a lot of choices too.
The second feature I'd particularly like is much more in line with the existing technology, but has some knock-on effects. It's an extra unit: sea colony pods. I'd love to have ocean cities. I'd expect a high tech level to be required. Maybe ocean cities should be restricted to shallow waters. I'd like that, rather than having them sprawl everywhere.
The map generator would need some changes, particularly to put resources on any [shallow] ocean squares, not only coastlines. Ocean mineral resources would be needed. Perhaps the easiest change would be a setting for more shallow ocean.
This also suggests a unit that can build cities on glaciers. Perhaps it should be expensive, building cities whic with a power station. Perhaps the unit which builds ocean cities should also be expensive, and ocean cities start with an offshore platform or something.
The third of Alpha Centauri's features I miss was taming the wildlife. Mind worms are gross, of course; kinda awesome but gross, but they got me thinking. It would be lots of fun to have various tamable animals in less realistic scenarios. Perhaps dolphin riders in a mostly oceanic world with early ocean cities.
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eekee wrote:The map generator would need some changes, particularly to put resources on any [shallow] ocean squares, not only coastlines. Ocean mineral resources would be needed. Perhaps the easiest change would be a setting for more shallow ocean.
The first of these is controlled by a ruleset setting (parameters.ocean_resources in terrain.ruleset), new resources can be added in the ruleset, and I think (not sure though, never messed with that) the third could be done by changing property_ocean_depth on either deep ocean or coast. So no, the map generator wouldn't need any changes at all, only the ruleset