Dec 6, 2017

Kings, leaders


I've had a couple of questions lately about kings. Because I was already working on this kind of functionality I thought I might see what you guys thought, if you had any ideas.


Firstly, I don't want to sink too much time into leaders just yet, as I want to get the core game fleshed out first. But this is basically the plan:


-Your leader will have more customisation than the other founding members as well as higher level items.

-The choices you make will decide what kind of strengths your leader has (some of them being combat bonuses such as moral boosts, others being economical, diplomatic ect).

-For the moment, your leader will be how you communicate with your people. Instead of having an "Advisers" dialog box, I thought it might be more organic if your people will come to you with their concerns (e.g. "Sir, we want to start a family, but there is no free housing" ect).


Characters don't currently die of old age, so there is also the question of how the player might change leadership, or choose a new leader if their current leader is killed in battle.


I'll be Keeping it simple probably for the moment, but let me know your thoughts if you have them :)

Dec 6, 2017

Why wont they die of old age? Do you mean directly? They probably should be more prone to disease with old age, that may be an indirect way to do it.


The people asking directly for things I think its a good idead and historically accurate too. There was not a very organized government at that time. If you read the greeks, it was all about the king, the king family and the people. The "palace" was just his big house. The Army was lead by the king or his family or a hired hero, like hercules. There were no generals or ministers. People went to the palace and asked for an audience with the king.


To stop massive message spamming for the player in times of crisis I would advise that the same request cannot be asked again, even by other people, in an X amount of months. If you dont fulfil it, then the request becomes angrier/more urgent.

Dec 7, 2017

Perhaps it's just a too early stage of developement to say that people die of old age. But I think Etaglibash is right. Perhaps with the final release (after much Alpha-testing and later also Beta-testing), it will be included, that your leader / king or other characters die by chance between an age of 50 or 70, which is perhaps already very much for that time. But sometimes leaders became very old, if you think for example at pharao Ramses the Great (Ramses the II.). He reigned / ruled for more than 60 years.

what about instead of them coming to you open a different menu so they can't flood you with messages and is a minigame when you are bored and has nothing to do



Dec 8, 2017Edited: Dec 8, 2017

I really like the concept Alex!

I've always liked the idea of identifying yourself as a unit in RTS games.

Naming a character after yourself and making him a special unit.

This way, it will accentuate the immersion aspect of the game (y)

Dec 12, 2017

Sounds like an ok idea. What I would add to the discussion is that the more people that wants, or needs, something the more prioritized the message becomes? Like in that it gets a red-ish color the more urgent it is. So if one guy want something that message could perhaps be grey and if half the city wants something then that message could be red? And with some additional info that and stuff.

Dec 12, 2017

Good thought. This way it would be easier to kind of priorize what to do next to keep your city "alive".

Dec 22, 2017

Sorry for the late reply guys, I've been focused on dev lately! I like the colored text idea. Glad you guys also seem to be into the personal involvement and immersive aspects of that also (with the leader). As for old age, it is something I've been thinking about lately too. At the very least, you'll be able to customize this as a setting. I'm leaning toward just giving them very long lives lately.

Jan 4, 2018Edited: Jan 4, 2018

As for audiences, I love it!


But, what about having delegates to deal with more common audience issues? If people always want more housing, then an assigned delegate (elevated from the people, or royal family) could 'collect' all the petitions and condense them into one message presented on a regularized basis, or when called, or just displayed as described above. The petitioners would have a minor 'mood boost' (or something) that they had an audience, while the decisions can be delayed until the player is ready to address housing. Besides which, having delegation could create some additional info summeries, minor automation of common tasks for later game, extra flavour text/art, impact the families/individual delegates positions/consumption of goods, and deliver a sense of social progression/complexity.


I guess I picture either, like, a pre-condition for prioritized coloured text - or a whole UI element with messages, or stats, or decisions, or what-have-you. The delegate(s) could operate something like the scribe in Dwarf Fortress, who, while the economy is small, takes breaks from their day-job to count things in stock (with settings to determine if they report 'lots o' this thing' for brevity of workload, or 'exactly 200 of this specific thing') - and as the economy grows, dedicates their life to the counting things - in this case, just addressing petitions. Could make for deciding whether to centralize audiences, or officials, or places of petitioning, or to distrubute them for maximum reach, but slower reporting.


Avatar monarchs! Yes!

Long may they reign!

Jan 9, 2018

I'm planning to do something similar actually and I love the idea. One thing I want to keep is the interaction with actual people at the ground level (instead of UI ect), so this kind of thing will work really well. It will take a while to get right, but I think this system can be much more immersive than a traditional UI/screen while perhaps more natural/functional.

Jan 9, 2018

Makes me think of Children of the Nile, a bit. The ground-level interaction is what made that game so cool. Scribes would go out and assess fields, and taxes would be calculated based on how many fields the scribe 'recorded' between fulfilling all their other needs. If papyrus was lacking, the scribes would 'estimate', which was still a better alternative than relying on 'voluntary' reporting. Government bakers would collect the taxes (as grain) after harvest from the communal threshing areas, and then become the distribution centres for salaried civil servants. Priests would provide services directly to the population, juggling between various shrines, clinics, and schools should there be a shortage of them (else dividing the labour using specialist status, or proximate location). Courts, staffed by royalty, would mediate noble-house disputes, etc. People would shop, stop to chat, gather resources, seek services, play, etc.


The information needed to 'govern' in COTN was a living part of the game-world, and if a player needed numbers, a tiny UI could be pulled-up to give general stocks, though the actual count/impact was localized (eg. a baker on one side of town is over-stocked, but the other is under-stocked).


Just thoughts. :)

Jan 12, 2018

Yea COTN was an amazing game. I got Alexandria a while back but haven't had a lot of time to get into anything lately. COTN has heaps of awesome detail but also quite a steep learning curve because of it. I think this will also be a challenge with Neolithic. I also love detail and I think it really brings the world to life, so I'm trying hard to make sure any detail I add is learn-able/logical and is actually meaningful to the player - easier said than done though!

Jan 18, 2018

I like that idea. you would have a menu/tab option and a little pop up notification on the top side of screen for any map locations of interest. Maybe later in development have the option to say whats a notification


Rpg side of the rts is awsome, thou with mirco when its later game and the war is raging. will there be something like a social statics? Split into 3 groups and the babies they produce will have different starts according to parents social statics, the salve/lower class make slaves and low level fighters/farmer/treeloopa. The middle class for builders crafters/high end units. The high/ Royal class for all your best items Armour/ Weapons and social stats (head of religion, Your armies, and cities)


possible add a total war aspect where a choice is made every so often giving your charters traits and followers from the choice made.


lets say you take over a small island and defeat the tribe. a pop up gives you 3 options to





each giving traits as well as possible followers. You choose option one and now have some followers that join you. You now have a new type/race with different unique stats that you can breed into your nation or they might fit a job perfectly! thou would be the worst economical option but in the social and long run you could create a new race.. who knows...

Jan 29, 2018

There will be aspects of this in the game Keith :) I haven't created any functionality around slavery yet, even though it was common everywhere in the ancient world (though really more once cities became large and strong social hierarchies emerged). The main reason for putting it off for the moment is that it is just very difficult to get right. Once I have a bit more time on my hands (after initial release and a few updates perhaps), I hope I can go a bit deeper into this stuff.

Jun 15, 2018

I'd love to have a chief/king character and see him walking among villagers and watching how his subjects work for him :D

Jun 16, 2018

In regards to slavery that's naturally a sensitive subject but here's one idea for how it could be done.


That is that slaves are attached to a free person, not soldiers and perhaps not priests, and that these are then essentially giving a boost to that person's work.


Say that for example each slave increases a woker's output by some 15% and a that a single worker can perhaps have up to four slaves with them.


Example: I have take two slaves and attached them to a guy I tell to build something. Then the guy will on the screen be followed around by two slaves, and when starting to build you can see how the builder is helped by the slaves, and the work speed (or material mined, carried and so on) is increased by a degree by each slave meaning that the builder, if each slaves boost his building with 15%, builds at a 130% speed.


Jun 16, 2018Edited: Jun 16, 2018

Why it's "sensitive"? That's how things looked like in ancient times, so we shouldn't avoid the subject. Actually slavery in Bronze Age was much more common than people think. And not because of warfare, but because of debts. Peasants back then had a really hard life - their fields were small, their technology primitive and crops output - meagre (no fertilizers, in many cases reliance on good weather). In order to survive they often borrowed grain hoping that in the next season they will have better crops and be able to repay their debts, but if not - in order to repay them they had to become slaves and repay it with work. It was happening so often that in some Bronze age cultures every few years rulers were issuing an edict cancelling these debts and granting such slaves their freedom. A lot of people in the Levant, in order to escape such slavery, were also becoming "hapiru" - bands of marauders living in the wilderness.


So slaves should be somehow in the game, but I don't know what is the best way to include them. I don't think they should give boost - I think it'd be more natural just to make them "lower class" people - having lower needs and just working like any other person. They can't be like "free" citizens because something has to separate them from the free people, so they should accept lower living conditions (houses, food, no luxuries etc) but be maybe more productive at work than free citizens (since they are forced to focus on working all the time). Maybe there also should be an option for them to rebel when the free citizens-slaves ratio is too high or escape from time to time. It would be nice because it would encourage people to take slaves (boost for the economy - workers with much lower needs than normal citizens) but also be careful - because if you have too much of them - they will rebel.

Jun 18, 2018

I like all the ideas here. Definitely having slaves attached to someone makes things simpler in code and function. But if course that does also take some of the depth away. It is a tricky issue, but I think mostly tricky from a design perspective. Somehow the system needs to represent the real world while staying simple enough to not be a big pain for players. Rebelling also brings a lot into the game. I'm thinking this might have to be something to come back to as dev continues after early access as it could be quite difficult to implement. But as you say, it was important and should be in the game.

Jun 18, 2018

The reason I wrote it was sensitive is that it seems to be a sensitive thing over the US with its history of recent slavery in the 1800s. Thus while it isn't a sensitive issue for me, I understand that other people might feel otherwise. Otherwise I pretty much agree with you on the historical aspects.


In all games I think there's a trade off of work involved, fun created and realism. So a system that don't take massive ammount of work, is fun and easy to use and somewhat realistic would seem to be the ideal with th opposite being a system that's very demanding for the developers, is hard or no fun to use but very realistic.


I'm not a developer but I'm not sure that slavery needs to be extrdible detailed as opposed to a simple, robust and workable system in the game.

Aug 26, 2018

empires apart did it good. civil or war etc leaders at start.

or even like total war one that dies with age. ( kings respawn quick anyways) choice your own little perks for economy or combat etc...


nothing too special little circles under em when clicked on with buffs :P

New Posts
  • Firstable i'm sorry for my english, i am french. I see in the video on youtube, you can make some breeding. And i am thinking about others animals rarely bring in game. The cat can give a good advantage for secure harvest and dogs can protect from wild animals or help for hunting. A tribe with a tame cheetah can win a great prestige. Some birds, like hawk for hunt, ect. That just a idea, thank for your game Alex. Hope i can play quickely to your game :) Remenber the first time ,when i have 8 i think, have play to Age of, that was one of my best experience in my life. But you know no presure :)
  • would love to see the first advanced civilization here too. can have em Greek warfares!
  • This is an idea I had, heavily inspired by the game Predynastic Egypt. So if it lies to close to that and is thus turned down, I'm won't put on the sad face. ;) The idea is that as you play the game to develop your city certain challenges comes up connected with the culture and location you're playing as perhaps one could also pick different sites depending on the cultures chosen. So that for example the Sumerians have Ur, Uruk, Lagash etc. while the Mycenaean games can be put in Pylos, Tiryns, Mycene etc. to chose from to place their city. Each location having a different set of resources, potentials and challenges. I suppose that these challenges could possible be to turned on and off, but perhaps only achivements can done when having them turned on? The idea is anyway that a certain situation emerges that the character must solve within a time limit in return for a boon or to avoid a drawback. These can be based on both mythological and historical events but without magico-religious effects. Although due to the early history this takes its work from, mythological may be as common as historical events. The reason as to why I think that this could be a cool ideas is also that rather than having a long sandbox right until the end of the Bronze Age, which will work for some, there could be some stuff to give some feeling of progression and of a kind of storyline for the city you're building. Just like in Pharao or Age of Empires where you're moved between different maps as you progress, here you'll get different challanges to mark that progression. Mycenaean example: Say that I'm playing at Pylos in a Mycenaean game. Then as I'm playing I get a challenge/mission that the king wishes for a new great palace to be built for him and I get to build a special building only available now, which is of course the Palace of Nestor, which will require some specialized craftsmen and some hard to get resources but if I'm successful I'll get a bonus from this Palace of Nestor throughout the game. In Mycene it could be that one needs to build some spectacular tombs with gold treasures for the deed in excess of what's normally provided, or that in Thebes (I'm straying into mythology here) that a strange new cult has been introduced to the people and one must build a temple to Dionysos least people infatuated with the cult leaves the city in order to be able to worship this new god. Sumerian example: And sauy that I'm playing with Uruk. Then perhaps there's a challenge to drive off the Gutian invaders, maybe there's a challenge to conduct a great sacrifice in order to bring Dumuzid back from the dead (with people really cast psycologically if failed) and so on, just like with the Mycenaean examples.