Posted on Thursday, August 6, 2015

Greetings Stardockians, 

Lets talk about invasion. I know that this feature is being reworked. I wanted to simply touch on some things that we had in the past and some things I would like to see moving forward. All of this is prefaced with a sincere hope that if changes occur that the Ai will both utilize and maximize all the options it has without sacrificing other aspects it also needs to focus on (research, diplomacy and trade.).  Invasion and warmongering can easily be considered for some players 20% or 50% of your gameplay in GCIII. I would like to see more done with the Ai on how it conducts invasions and more importantly how it defends. I don't need a fancy screen with pew pew, but I am more interested in the behind the scenes work of  how attk and defense work and to see a real need for all players (ai and human) to seek out invasion and more importantly defensive techs and buildings. 

Currently I do not progress past getting Bio warfare. Any thing else up this tree is simply not needed. With Bio warfare I can take a transport with the smallest amount of troops (.5) and take ANY planet I desire. There is simply zero need to progress further. 

As silly as this sounds, I think some Ai should be hard coded to get one of the invasion attacks and one of the defensive ones. Even if the human knows that the Drengin will always pick Bio warfare and defend against planetary bombardment, he still would not be able to also contend with the Yor who would use Planetary bombardment and defend against Bio. One of those ai are going to pose serious problems for a human as he can only pick one to beat and not both (initially, unless he can trade for them). 

There is also no need to seek out and research any defenses or defensive buildings, none. In games past researching the Tarquan training facility was one of my major focuses as it gave me a soldiering you needed against some races. Lets bring it back!  Also currently the next tier of Invasion techs are just not needed, (Tidal disruption and Core detonation), both are great but not needed in the slightest. 

In Gal Civ II I had games against the Yor or the Korrath where I need 2 or 3 fully loaded transports {and} to bombard the planet to the stone age before I could take it, Oh those glorious games of days past! 

Obviously Paul and Brad are having meetings this morning as we speak on how to bring such fun into Gal Civ  III's invasions. The api hooks are there. The commands can be done, how each ai will react to invasion and how they will chose to defend is what both of those developers need to figure out. 

Some observations I have made so far in dozens of Insane map games are this:

  • Eager which is the 2nd reward in the Aggressive line in Malevolent is simply too good. It makes me want to invade early and often. DO NOT CHANGE IT! It is a warmongers dream. However I am not sure if it needs to be moved slightly up the tree, maybe swap it with the 3rd one in the tree. Again I think it is fine where it is, I am pointing out it is REALLY useful.
  • The Benevolent and Pragmatic lines 'should' have a trait that helps with defense of planets. This can be anything and can encourage players to seek out these traits once we get proper invasions going. 
  • We should get a 5 point ideology trait for each and every invasion we do. Also the optional pics we are offered should be similar in effect to ones we get upon Colonization. This would serve to increase Ideology point acquirement on small maps and encourage (a bit more) warfare later in game. I think things like gifting the planet 5 population because we were merciful or 3 raw production because we cracked the whip on slaves or a 1 or 2 points to economy because we were offered tribute, are all ideas for invasion ideological choices.
  • Force upon the player to chose to build defensive buildings. I never do currently. I want to regret that choice. 
  • The need for transparency is of utmost importance. I am a good player and have read and understand how production and population work. The math and values on how to defend and attack need to be spelled out to the new players in a way that is easy to understand. As a future idea perhaps we can get a pop up which we can toggle off that tells players this planet has a crappy defense and you can fix it by building this.....
  • All types of attack and defenses need to be given bonuses as rewards in the higher tiers of the ideological trees. I know Paul put a TON of work into them and changing them is not easy. I would like to see another tree added to the four of each ideology we have now that adds more and is only for att/defense of your empire. 

In closing I am really really happy with our game. I tell everyone I know about it! The current modders have done a fantastic job in making my game better. 

Do we have a (rough) ETA on the rework of Invasions from anyone at Stardock?