Great interview with Explorimate and Frogboy.

By on December 16, 2015 10:45:38 AM from Galactic Civilizations III Forums Galactic Civilizations III Forums

Larsenex

Join Date 04/2009
+142

Its audio but well worth the time to listen to it!

 

http://explorminate.net/2015/12/16/strategic-expanse-interview-with-brad-wardell-2/

32 Replies
Search this post
Subscription Options


Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
December 16, 2015 12:11:39 PM from Galactic Civilizations III Forums Galactic Civilizations III Forums

So we're not going to get a proper invasion system until 2017...wow.  Not only that, but it isn't part of the base game but will be sectioned off as part of a standalone expansion.  Brad was right, it is not something I'm terrible pleased to hear.

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
December 16, 2015 1:44:08 PM from Galactic Civilizations III Forums Galactic Civilizations III Forums

Quoting The Sisko,

So we're not going to get a proper invasion system until 2017...wow.  Not only that, but it isn't part of the base game but will be sectioned off as part of a standalone expansion.  Brad was right, it is not something I'm terrible pleased to hear.

 

Honestly, I think a proper invasion system is not a big deal. At all.

 

A pointless invasion mini-game isn't going to add much to the game and there's way bigger things to tackle first. It's a great candidate for expansion fodder, since not having it doesn't really hurt the game, and more importantly they can do a lot more with it in the scope of a full expansion.

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
December 16, 2015 1:58:15 PM from Galactic Civilizations III Forums Galactic Civilizations III Forums

I'm perfectly happy with push-button planetary captures. Push-button ship combat, too.

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
December 16, 2015 1:59:35 PM from Galactic Civilizations III Forums Galactic Civilizations III Forums

I actually think the reason why races fall like a pack of cards is the instant one turn invasion.You transport spam empires to death pretty quickly.

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
December 16, 2015 2:07:06 PM from Galactic Civilizations III Forums Galactic Civilizations III Forums

If the mechanics are working, (Defense/resistance) then no issues. To be honest there is really no need I have seen on Normal to research past bio warfare. Pop 2 transports and bio = win every time. 

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
December 16, 2015 4:17:34 PM from Galactic Civilizations III Forums Galactic Civilizations III Forums

I had to take the time to listen to the interview before responding.  In short, I am happy with what I heard.  The concept of a greatly expanded invasion mechanics sounds great.  It sounds like it certainly would take the game in a new direction, one that is much different than what GalCiv has had before and as such I have no problem with it being a major standalone expansion.  As a long time galciv fan and a founder for GalCiv3 I believe that the money I invested has thus far been well worth it and hearing that such a major enhancement is coming and one that I get as a founder it only reinforces this belief.  I love Galciv3 now, even with the warts others always point out.  My experience with GalCiv2 tells me that the game will incrementally inprove both in functionality and features. 

As for the AI, I always want the best AI but to tell the truth, I have not been able to win a game (normal or above) yet.  This is more a failing on my part than the AI being super good.  So, for me the AI is good now.  I just need to find some really good tutorial's or 'Let's Play' videos (that are not hours long) and I should improve

 

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
December 16, 2015 7:47:20 PM from Galactic Civilizations III Forums Galactic Civilizations III Forums

Quoting The Sisko,

So we're not going to get a proper invasion system until 2017...wow.  Not only that, but it isn't part of the base game but will be sectioned off as part of a standalone expansion.  Brad was right, it is not something I'm terrible pleased to hear.

Well, I'm actually not sure if this was off-the-cuff or a hard date as that "2017" was pretty conversational within the context of having to basically fork the game in order to try to make everyone happy ...

 

 

Quoting MyViewsAndMuse,

I had to take the time to listen to the interview before responding.  In short, I am happy with what I heard.  The concept of a greatly expanded invasion mechanics sounds great.  It sounds like it certainly would take the game in a new direction, one that is much different than what GalCiv has had before and as such I have no problem with it being a major standalone expansion.  As a long time galciv fan and a founder for GalCiv3 I believe that the money I invested has thus far been well worth it and hearing that such a major enhancement is coming and one that I get as a founder it only reinforces this belief.  I love Galciv3 now, even with the warts others always point out.  My experience with GalCiv2 tells me that the game will incrementally inprove both in functionality and features. 

As for the AI, I always want the best AI but to tell the truth, I have not been able to win a game (normal or above) yet.  This is more a failing on my part than the AI being super good.  So, for me the AI is good now.  I just need to find some really good tutorial's or 'Let's Play' videos (that are not hours long) and I should improve

 

I felt the same way, I certainly did not have the impression that we were being left behind or neglected, rather that it's a lot of extra work to appease everyone..

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
December 16, 2015 7:56:52 PM from Galactic Civilizations III Forums Galactic Civilizations III Forums

eXplorminate kix ass. 

 

Just sayin'. 

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
December 16, 2015 10:01:25 PM from Galactic Civilizations III Forums Galactic Civilizations III Forums

Broadly speaking, with GalCiv III out we've learned so much about what the engine can really do (the multicore stuff means we can have it do a lot more than it currently does) that we want to make some pretty big game changes in the future.

Let me give you just one example: Citizens.  I would like to see population made into citizens that I can then place on my planetary improvements. Over time, those citizens become specialized (like scientists, engineers, farmers, soldiers, etc.). Players could then speicalize their planets by sending their scientists or engineers or economists or farmers or whagever to a particular planet.

But that's a huge change over what we have today and if people flipped out about losing their cheesy wheel mechanic, they'd really be upset at having the entire economic system be about your citizenry (a Drengin warrior might be better than a Torian warrior but a Torian farmer migth be better than a Drengin farmer. Maybe you should send all the Torian farmers you find to your best food worlds and build up a trade system to get your food out to your other planets, etc.).  

That sort of fundamental change is something I'd like to look at but wouldn't dream to put into a .update.

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
December 17, 2015 8:29:20 AM from Stardock Forums Stardock Forums

 

Quoting Frogboy,


Let me give you just one example: Citizens.  I would like to see population made into citizens that I can then place on my planetary improvements. Over time, those citizens become specialized (like scientists, engineers, farmers, soldiers, etc.). Players could then specialize their planets by sending their scientists or engineers or economists or farmers or whagever to a particular planet.

Placing citizens can sometimes lead down the path of too much micro management. As long as there is an automated way to do it, say a governor placing citizens in the most advantageous position, I think it could work. (in addition to allowing manual placement).

No flipping out regardless 

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
December 17, 2015 9:13:29 AM from Galactic Civilizations III Forums Galactic Civilizations III Forums

Quoting Frogboy,

But that's a huge change over what we have today and if people flipped out about losing their cheesy wheel mechanic, they'd really be upset at having the entire economic system be about your citizenry (a Drengin warrior might be better than a Torian warrior but a Torian farmer migth be better than a Drengin farmer. Maybe you should send all the Torian farmers you find to your best food worlds and build up a trade system to get your food out to your other planets, etc.).  

That sort of fundamental change is something I'd like to look at but wouldn't dream to put into a .update.

 

This makes me wonder if you really understood what the wheel backlash was about, tbh.

 

People don't actually care about the wheel itself. Most people hate it. Even those among us who use it religiously actually tend to dislike it. What we like about the wheel is what it allowed us to do, not how it allows us to do it. I get the feeling that if you'd just put the focuses in at 100% offset, most people wouldn't have minded as much as they did. The problem was that you were trying to kill two birds with one stone - getting rid of the accursed wheel, and simultaneously nerfing production by forcing players to waste lots of it. This spectacularly failed on both counts, since we were able to work around the focus restriction and still get 75-100% output on indy/res planets using the global spending wheel (nullifying any balance improvements), and it also just pissed off a lot of people by forcing them to sacrifice a ton of production. You tried to balance the economy without actually balancing the economy, and you tried to change the interface without changing the system we were using the interface to control. That was, inevitably, a disaster - and I did say it would be when you first raised the idea back in August, for pretty much exactly these reasons.

 

But remember when you first mooted the idea of replacing the wheel, you asked us what it should be replaced with. The ONLY popular suggestion for replacement wasn't a UI tweak at all. It was a complete change in how the economic mechanics worked - a building-centric production system, where buildings produced flat manu/econ/research and we wouldn't have to worry about telling the population what to do anymore. The wheel would die because it would become irrelevant, not because you had mandated it must die despite everything else remaining the same (funnily enough, you were trying to force the population to do something and you got a lot of coercion resistance - pretty ironic considering the reasoning you gave for removing it ).

 

That strongly suggests to me that you'll actually get a lot less resistance from completely changing how the economy works, than you did from simply trying to leave it exactly as it is but changing how we interact with it. The wheel is popular because it is currently the best possible interface for controlling the economic system you've put into the game. If you want it to die, then you need to give us an economy where the wheel is not the most effective way to control it. Then no-one will give a damn when you remove the obsolete wheel. 

 

The citizen-economy idea is the kind of change that, while it's actually even more of a gamble than just ditching the wheel was, the pay-off is a lot higher and so we're less likely to throw our toys out the pram if you attempt it - the payoff from the wheel/focus switch was 'you now have to govern like a retard'. The payoff from the citizen-style economy you're suggesting is 'population will become an immensely cool and characterful part of the game'. I suspect that you'll find players are a lot more forgiving of that.

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
December 17, 2015 9:25:17 AM from Galactic Civilizations III Forums Galactic Civilizations III Forums

Quoting naselus,

But remember when you first mooted the idea of replacing the wheel, you asked us what it should be replaced with. The ONLY popular suggestion for replacement wasn't a UI tweak at all. It was a complete change in how the economic mechanics worked - a building-centric production system, where buildings produced flat manu/econ/research and we wouldn't have to worry about telling the population what to do anymore. The wheel would die because it would become irrelevant, not because you had mandated it must die despite everything else remaining the same (funnily enough, you were trying to force the population to do something and you got a lot of coercion resistance - pretty ironic considering the reasoning you gave for removing it ).



That strongly suggests to me that you'll actually get a lot less resistance from completely changing how the economy works, than you did from simply trying to leave it exactly as it is but changing how we interact with it. The wheel is popular because it is currently the best possible interface for controlling the economic system you've put into the game. If you want it to die, then you need to give us an economy where the wheel is not the most effective way to control it. Then no-one will give a damn when you remove the obsolete wheel.



The citizen-economy idea is the kind of change that, while it's actually even more of a gamble than just ditching the wheel was, the pay-off is a lot higher and so we're less likely to throw our toys out the pram if you attempt it - the payoff from the wheel/focus switch was 'you now have to govern like a retard'. The payoff from the citizen-style economy you're suggesting is 'population will become an immensely cool and characterful part of the game'. I suspect that you'll find players are a lot more forgiving of that.

 

This sums up changes that should be made. I agree with these observations. I do think Stardock is on the correct path and moving production back to population like it should be, then planetary Governors would play very strongly as you simply set the Governor and on to the next planet.

 

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
December 17, 2015 9:33:14 AM from Galactic Civilizations III Forums Galactic Civilizations III Forums

I think we need more 'Empire' Wide UI controls. I want to do more from that screen with my Empire and it needs to change as the size and needs of my Empire grows. This means DIFFERENT screens for managing the Empire based on the number of Planets you control, Id like larger fonts, larger ui and if need pages where I can simply hit the 'right arrow' key and go quickly to the next page of planets that I can manage, assign projects, building, govenors, or anything. Also the Shipyards (that are attached to their respective sponsors) MUST be included in this ui on these pages.

 

Just  my thoughts.

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
December 17, 2015 9:38:05 AM from Galactic Civilizations III Forums Galactic Civilizations III Forums

Quoting Larsenex,

I think we need more 'Empire' Wide UI controls. I want to do more from that screen with my Empire and it needs to change as the size and needs of my Empire grows. This means DIFFERENT screens for managing the Empire based on the number of Planets you control, Id like larger fonts, larger ui and if need pages where I can simply hit the 'right arrow' key and go quickly to the next page of planets that I can manage, assign projects, building, govenors, or anything. Also the Shipyards (that are attached to their respective sponsors) MUST be included in this ui on these pages.

 

Just  my thoughts.

I agree and it's something I think we need to do a lot more work on as we go forward.

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
December 17, 2015 11:50:38 AM from Galactic Civilizations III Forums Galactic Civilizations III Forums

Quoting Frogboy,

Broadly speaking, with GalCiv III out we've learned so much about what the engine can really do (the multicore stuff means we can have it do a lot more than it currently does) that we want to make some pretty big game changes in the future.

Let me give you just one example: Citizens.  I would like to see population made into citizens that I can then place on my planetary improvements. Over time, those citizens become specialized (like scientists, engineers, farmers, soldiers, etc.). Players could then speicalize their planets by sending their scientists or engineers or economists or farmers or whagever to a particular planet.

But that's a huge change over what we have today and if people flipped out about losing their cheesy wheel mechanic, they'd really be upset at having the entire economic system be about your citizenry (a Drengin warrior might be better than a Torian warrior but a Torian farmer migth be better than a Drengin farmer. Maybe you should send all the Torian farmers you find to your best food worlds and build up a trade system to get your food out to your other planets, etc.).  

That sort of fundamental change is something I'd like to look at but wouldn't dream to put into a .update.

I wouldn't mind at all a population based system. And while you are at it, you could just preserve the races of conquered population. That gives the game a lot more personality and more options: newly conquered people dislike the new government, you have to replace them (one way or the other), or you have to turn them into followers of your own empire. Also they have different stats like you mentioned so it could be worth to convert them to loyal citizens. And there could be a mechanic based on influence to let foreign people immigrate into your empire.

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
December 17, 2015 3:12:44 PM from Galactic Civilizations III Forums Galactic Civilizations III Forums

Im gonna disagree and say that the game is actually in a semi-decent state right now. I never use the wheel and frankly don't care if its not perfectly efficient. 

The population system sounds very interesting. In particular, you could introduce "schools" as a building, which skew your pop growth towards one speciality. Would be very interesting.

Actually, even right now - ever since you ramped up the population growth HUGELY, the game feels much faster and honestly better. Recently I've started wondering whether I should start actively distributing my population to reduce the diminishing returns effects and optimise morale. 

Much more interesting than some dumb wheel!

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
December 17, 2015 3:14:31 PM from Galactic Civilizations III Forums Galactic Civilizations III Forums

The major improvements so far have been to the AI.

1.5 AI is SO much better than 1.2 AI. Its unbelievable. Keep up this progress, continue tweaking balance and building out depth and you'll be moving along the right track

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
December 17, 2015 3:16:44 PM from Galactic Civilizations III Forums Galactic Civilizations III Forums

I'm also in support of the population system or "buildings are production" econ model. Much less gamey.

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
December 17, 2015 4:03:01 PM from Galactic Civilizations III Forums Galactic Civilizations III Forums

What id like to see is:

1) More AI improvements. The better the AI, the more challenging and "sticky" the game. Nobody likes to win too easily. Lots of room for improvement in terms of tech choices, earlygame play, and a general intelligence. Really crucial to improving long term engagement.

2) An overhaul of the economic system as you've suggested. More depth needed. Really like the citizen specialisation idea.

3) More work on diplomacy. Its not done yet. I think the AI needs more "personality"

4) Some balancing work, and polish. Not so crucial because game is primarily single-player, but still important

5) Generally more depth - spying, invasions, starbase overhaul, asteroid mining, etc.

6) More ship parts, ingame ability to customize starbases, shipyards and fighters, and make it easier to assign ship designs to specific races. Right now its quite difficult - requires modding. 

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
December 17, 2015 4:11:58 PM from Galactic Civilizations III Forums Galactic Civilizations III Forums

SMAC had a citizen system (antiquated of course) and I liked it. Changes don't bother me. It's all good.

I do wish you would respond to me on the possibility of more voice overs in the future.

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
December 17, 2015 4:57:36 PM from Galactic Civilizations III Forums Galactic Civilizations III Forums

Frogboy, thanks for doing the interview.


I, for one, am excited hearing about the things you say that you would like to do to the game... e.g. scaling administrative costs as a meaningful alternative to the now abandoned LEP, labour proficiencies per race/planet, internal politics, scaled components to prevent stupid ships with insane engine range, etc... All good stuff! You know, I actually get the impression that you would like to see implemented most of the things I've thus far found lacking... On the other hand, it would seem that the reason for things being the way they are is that the project has been largely delegated and you haven't had a lot of direct involvement. Will this be changing soon? I know you're a busy guy with a bunch of other projects, but I think the game would benefit a lot if you could stay more actively involved. 

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
December 17, 2015 5:44:22 PM from Galactic Civilizations III Forums Galactic Civilizations III Forums

Anything SMAC has is good Space-Terraforming could be cool too. Taking gas clouds and putting in place collectors, mining asteroids, maybe add a few resources that can be improved, etc

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
December 18, 2015 12:07:12 AM from Galactic Civilizations III Forums Galactic Civilizations III Forums

Quoting Franco fx,

SMAC had a citizen system (antiquated of course) and I liked it. Changes don't bother me. It's all good.

I do wish you would respond to me on the possibility of more voice overs in the future.

I like the idea of voice overs.  I don't think they'll make it into GalCiv III though.   Star Control will have a ton of voice over (something like 12 hours of it) with dynamic alien talking and the works.

If we were going to do voice overs, I think it would fall into the tech area of the game (reading techs and such).  But the aliens would require a major overhaul to do that sort of thing.

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
December 18, 2015 12:09:25 AM from Galactic Civilizations III Forums Galactic Civilizations III Forums

Quoting LongDeadFingers,

Frogboy, thanks for doing the interview.




I, for one, am excited hearing about the things you say that you would like to do to the game... e.g. scaling administrative costs as a meaningful alternative to the now abandoned LEP, labour proficiencies per race/planet, internal politics, scaled components to prevent stupid ships with insane engine range, etc... All good stuff! You know, I actually get the impression that you would like to see implemented most of the things I've thus far found lacking... On the other hand, it would seem that the reason for things being the way they are is that the project has been largely delegated and you haven't had a lot of direct involvement. Will this be changing soon? I know you're a busy guy with a bunch of other projects, but I think the game would benefit a lot if you could stay more actively involved. 

I'd love to be more involved on GalCiv.  It is my baby.  GalCiv III is Paul's baby and he's done a great job.

Once Ashes of the Singularity is released hope to take an active role in the first expandalone (2017).

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
December 18, 2015 11:44:35 AM from Galactic Civilizations III Forums Galactic Civilizations III Forums

SMAC did  exceptional job with tech voiceovers etc. As a physicist myself, 99% of them were plausible and based on real life things that may one day occur. It really increased the immersion. The secret project movies were amazing too. Right now i feel like galciv lacks that depth of content and it hurts immersion. It's one of the things that made SMAC great.

@frogboy - you have my email on file. Reach out - I work for a business that may be able to help you crowdsource is stuff really easily, cheaply and with great results. And it would add loads to the immersion aspect.

My current game on 1.5 is awesome - keep it up. 

Reason for Karma (Optional)
Successfully updated karma reason!
Stardock Forums v1.0.0.0    #101114  walnut1   Server Load Time: 00:00:00.0000265   Page Render Time: