Discussion about the format of the longturn game

Planning and discussing Freeciv Longturn gaming
pungtryne
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Discussion about the format of the longturn game

Postby pungtryne » Sun Jun 18, 2017 4:10 pm

I thought we need a thread to discuss the format and our experiences of the longturn games. It's really cool with these huge games. Thanks to all developers, contributors and players for making it possible.

I want to start the discussion with something from in-game chat. Many players seems to do just one turn and never come back. What can we do make it better? Here are some suggestions:

1. Make it more of a commitment. Make people check a box with "I commit to this game and have intentions of playing it" or something. Send email reminders to idlers. Make it less than 12 turns of idle time if you only played one turn.

2. I think it can be off-putting for new players to meet neighbours right away. How motivating is it to be a little late and have your units start on others border? Or see that you have 5 active neigbhours bordering you? Personally I have no problem but I can imagine many players want to be able to at least settle down and get a few turns of development started before meeting other players.

If someone sends a warrior to the starter-pack, they really will have no chance at all as settlers don't move faster than warriors and warrior will just destroy the city immediately.

Other issues I would like to discuss.

1. Compensation for late joiners. Does this 30 gold compensation pr. turn calculate based on idle turns, or all turns. Could someone abandon a strong repbulic at turn 40, and a new player comes in at turn 52 and get 52 x 30 gold bonus? or would it be 12 x 30 ? I'm concerned about the balance between not being doomed for starting late, and not being able to buy lots of units and attack someone who has played well for 50 turns. This might or might not be an issue.

2. Could it be good to have some variations in the map topology? Personally I like maps with big ocean. Could be some kind of rotation-system for these games.

3. Are trade routes totally dead in longturn? It seems many people don't like it. The main arguments seems to be that it's not realistic to just get revenue pr turn from nothing. This argument is bad as marketplaces banks and stock exchanges just do that. Also It IS realistic to get revenue from trading with cities far away because of comparative advantages. The second argument is that it's harder for new players is a tiny bit better but CIV is complicated, and I don't see how trade routes are trickier than other features of the game like rapture or doing a good start towards a better government.

I think taking away trade routes makes the game less rich with less possibilities, and more boring. It is maybe the games most powerful feature. Taking it away is like playing a first person shooter restricted to only light firearms or FIFA without the top divisions.

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AndreasR
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Re: Discussion about the format of the longturn game

Postby AndreasR » Sun Jun 18, 2017 7:52 pm

This is all very good feedback, I will reply in detail when I have time. If you could request 1 change to the LongTurn games, what would that be?

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Corbeau
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Re: Discussion about the format of the longturn game

Postby Corbeau » Fri Jun 23, 2017 10:19 am

Just found this thread, will reply more when I get the time. But for now, I would like to propose a new rule that the next LTW game: don't need to establish embassy in order to exchange maps, techs, money whatever, you only need to have units in contact.

It is a starting server setting (at least it is so in Freeciv client, is it the same in Web?) so no specific ruleset/code editing required. If there is no such setting, let me know and I'll put it into the wishlist.

The contact would last for a few days and, if units are driven apart, it is lost until they meet again.

Lexxie
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Re: Discussion about the format of the longturn game

Postby Lexxie » Mon Jun 26, 2017 3:02 am

The start goes so long and slow. It's probably tricky to fix but there might be some good ideas ?

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Corbeau
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Re: Discussion about the format of the longturn game

Postby Corbeau » Thu Jun 29, 2017 11:18 pm

Replying to this.

How to start a game.

About problems with people starting late being at a disadvanage.

I still believe the only solution is to stop new players joining pretty soon after the game starts. Actually, the best would be ANY kind of reservation/announcement before the game starts, then a waiting period (5-10 days) and a requirement to check a box to confirm participation (either minimum three days AFTER they signed in or, say, 48 hours before game starts, maybe even both). This way we know how many people there are so the map can be better adjusted, those who sign in are a bit more reliable to stay in the game and everybody starts on an equal footing.

If anyone misses the start (which they shouldn't, due to 5-10 day pre-game), there will be another game starting at a later date.

You said you don't want any kind of pre-game, but I'm afraid that is the only sane solution for a multi-month game.

Giving everybody only 2 settlers instead of 4 is bad. We want an even quicker start, not a slower one. Furthermore, starting with already placed cities is worst of all. The only difference between that and having settlers is that with cities, computer decides where to place them for you and that defies the purpose very much. To speed things up, maybe give more money so people can buy granaries, maybe even add some migrants into the initial unit mix. I'm not sure combat units are necessary, we got nothing else to build in the beginning anyway.

Also, maybe make Settlers cheaper. However, that may stimulate smallpoxing.

pungtryne
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Re: Discussion about the format of the longturn game

Postby pungtryne » Fri Jun 30, 2017 11:33 am

I agree with Corbeau in what he writes. Ultimately there is little use in having as many players as possible, if it ends up with too few dedicated players. I'm very for pre-game signup and pre-game period.

Also I think it's very important to state rules and map gen clearly before starting the game. Many for example wants to quit g5 because tech sharing got turned off.

One more thing. The froum-link on play.freeciv.org sends you to the freegamedev. Might be better to send to this one?

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AndreasR
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Re: Discussion about the format of the longturn game

Postby AndreasR » Fri Jun 30, 2017 8:34 pm

This is the settings file for the next LongTurn game. I'm updating it based on feedback.

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Corbeau
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Re: Discussion about the format of the longturn game

Postby Corbeau » Fri Jul 14, 2017 12:07 pm

I think these suggestions would fix a thing or two:

1. All units without a city that supports them deteriorate so that after 5 turns tehy are dead (if it is possible to set such a rate).

This would mean that all non-taken nations would die off, no idle settlers and workers, no unplayable nations that new players are forced into at T15

Primordial workers can be saved from this, obviously, by assigning them to a city.

2. TECHLEAK is a must. With alliances all around and people exchanging techs, people with no alliance or in small alliances will become hopelessly backward. techleak helps them catch up at least a bit. Also, make it depend on the number of LIVE players, not all players that started the game (hence the suggestion #1). So, if out of 250 players, 80 are alive, 72 have a tech, then for the remaining 8 the tech costs 10% or less.

Maybe if a player is idle for an agreed number of turns (a month?) the nation is removed from the game in order not to clump the lagging players from the previous paragraph.

Maybe (or maybe not) increase the overall cost of techs, but looking at Game 1, this may not be necessary. We're at T84 and still only halfway through the tech tree.

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Re: Discussion about the format of the longturn game

Postby GriffonSpade » Fri Jul 14, 2017 1:32 pm

Corbeau wrote:I think these suggestions would fix a thing or two:

1. All units without a city that supports them deteriorate so that after 5 turns tehy are dead (if it is possible to set such a rate).


Yes, this is a game option. It's in the military tab, 'slowly kill units without home cities'. This value is in percentage and at least 1 HP is lost per turn. So 20 would kill a unit in 5 turns, 10 in 10 turns, and 1 in however many turns the unit has HP.

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Re: Discussion about the format of the longturn game

Postby GrantHenninger » Fri Jul 14, 2017 4:50 pm

AndreasR wrote:This is the settings file for the next LongTurn game. I'm updating it based on feedback.

I probably won't play another game with tradingtech disabled. I was surprised by that in game 5 and think it makes alliances almost valueless. Now, I'm not a quitter, so I'm going to stick it out in game 5, but I won't be playing another one with that particular setting.