From the information available, GALCIV3 is looking pretty much like the previous iteration with nothing that substantial to tell them apart. This is a gut feeling impression and I hope I'm wrong and there's more than updated graphics and tweaks here and there to justify wide consumer interest in a seemingly lackluster premise.
The problem of putting what is galciv into language is because it is more of a feeling being portrayed vs. a set rule-book of what is and what isn't galciv.
To get an idea of this feeling of what is galciv, look at GalCiv 2 and 1. Take what is at the core of those games... GalCiv 1 had you wonder to each star and colonize particular systems and travel the entire map (think endless space without space lanes) for interaction with stars. Then we upped the game to Gal Civ 2, where most people have a well defined image of Galactic Civilizations.
A lot of Galactic Civilizations follows a general 4x rule book. Keep the players time more on the main map vs. any sub-window. The exception to this feature is the shipyard where designing ships can be crucial (but this is not necessary, and can be quick for more users).
The other feature that defines Galactic Civilizations is the fact the map is an abstract of time vs. distance. The number of hexes on the map does not indicate a distance it indicates a time. The space folding works strangely throughout the galaxy and the folding of space moves at varying distances through space. That is also why you have a limited galaxy that you cannot pass a certain point. The way the hyper drive works prevents infinite travel into deep space.
The adjacency bonus fit into Galactic Civilizations as it is a seemless addition to the planet screen. We already had a planet screen where we may place buildlings down, and so in Gal Civ 2, it was a matter of room for the building vs. placement, but there were bonuses that kept the player thinking I want this particular building there. Now, take that to another level if there is a building that provides the same bonuses to adjacent tiles, then it is like there was a resource to take advantage of in that spot. Hence, it was the same idea that was already in Gal Civ 2, but moved to an advanced form. Doing a sim city version of the game moves the game away from 4x standard rulebook of keep these subscreens short. Recall you may have 100+ planets and playing sim city for a short while on 100+ planets would take a long time.
Adding resources to the main map to harvest. That is a new feature and follows more the Civilization idea. It is not a far fetched idea as we were able to mine asteroids and so this is just a simple modification of let us mine for a special resource instead of adding production. The foundation was there it was just improved.
The dual que system of Galactic Civilization. The initial removal of this led to a large uproar here on the forums. Many ideas were thrown out to re instate the dual que. Eventually the idea of the starport was realized to be placed on the map. It fit into lore and provides interesting gameplay role to this game. I would call this a NEW feature entirely and not an improvement on old features so much. The idea of moving the ship building to another much more vunerable structure opens up a lot more strategies and may provide a easy mop-up stage at the end of the game. We'll see when the AI and more play testing are done.
Why is 3D not Gal Civ? For one all known galaxies live on a plane. Although that plane is skewed one direction or the other, they are on the plane. The nature of the Gal Civ is to have a fixed distance points abstracted in large squares / hexes (now) This system would be done in a large 3 Dimensional lattice. One it is Difficult to select an individual cube from a large 3D lattice. Secondly, each system you encounter would be on the plane and so we would have 3 different types of solar systems indicating the directions we have cubes stack in the lattice. Hence, from each solar system i would have to re-orient my camera to look at the system in the easiest way to get a sense of where things are located. Recall that Gal Civ is a game that keeps the map simple at its core. The move to 3D will just unnecessarily complicate matters, especially since solar systems live on planes anyway.
All Gal Civ 3 is doing is not showing the 3d variation or orientation to make things easier to read and see. Without this, I would always spend my time looking at a horizontal plane of the solar system no matter the orientation. I look at the exercise of benefits of 3d map vs. difficulty of use on the 3d maps. If our computers were designed to handle a 3d map, then movement and such would be soo much easier. But I suspect that technology is a long way off.
I think that's always a problem
For example in Civ5 a lot of people were complaining that "I want Civ4 but in 3D"
Sort of the irony in that is, all the recent 'HD' versions of older games (Age of Empires 2, etc) has been met with "This should have been a patch to the original and not a new game"
So a lot of times people 'say' one thing but then don't actually want what they say
Also from a game dev standpoint, no one wants to 'make the exact same game' again. People want to move on. Also like in any game dev cycle, you likely had TONS of ideas. Some aren't fun at all. But some might have been constrained by the engine, by the way the game was designed at a certain point, etc.
Also 'making GalCi2 in 3D' somewhat implies that GalCiv2 was 'perfect in every way'. Sure GalCiv2 is tons of fun. Just like Civ4 was. But they were not 'perfect'. Improvements are always to be had. new game concepts to be integrated. Game designers are always improving old systems, throwing out obsolete system, and making entirely new systems. To say we want GalCiv2 in 3D means that we would be throwing away all the knowledge from what did and didn't work in GalCiv2 in the intervening 8 years.
I think ultimately the phrasing should not e
"I want GalCiv2 in 3D"
"I want an awesome GalCiv3 game"
Which is a struggle between understanding what really core concepts define GalCiv as a series of games, and seeing what new and exciting gameplay concepts could be integrated to make that experience different, yet familiar.
Galaxies are only a plane on distances in the order of 10k+ lightyears. The plane of the milky way is still 1000 lightyears thick, so unless traveling 1000+ light years is easy for you (which it is not for any galciv level civ), it really is by no means a plane. I just wanted to point that out it't not a argument for or against 3d.
I think most people here are more or less in agreement in any case: innovation is a sliding scale, to little and your game is to stale, to much and it's not the same game anymore.
"I see you too are having a hard time putting "what is galciv?" into clear language."
GalCiv is a fun Space 4X with a minmal but intriguing empire management and a map that focuses on distance as a strategic factor. Ships are designed according to researched technologies and displayed in entertaining cinematic battles. The AI has been polished to provide a consistently engaging long term game.
Technical game features include
Distance as strategic factor.
Dual production queue.
Highly streamlined celestial navigation.
Highly streamlined empire and planet management.
Combat based on three weapons/defense types and hull capacity.
Separate tech trees for separate races.
A good deal of the fun feel of the game is an artful balance of mechanisms mixed with a lovingly implemented AI and several narrative "events" that look to keep any one game from stagnating. The balance and imbalance of the different races adds to the overall replayibilty of the game.
As clear as I could do it. I'm sure I missed several points others would consider key.
(Did I mention the jokes? The jokes are important.)
What galciv is to me...a void. A void where ideas and creativity fall into and new things emerge. So when someone says "this isn't galciv" I hear, "its not apart of galciv yet" for everything changes.
Everyone has a different ideology on this it seems, but I hope we all know that there is no one apart from yourself that will ever see this game the same way you do. Unless you believe in the first paragraph.
I simply do not understand the issues people have with tactical combat. It adds depth and fulfillment.
On the Steam forums I have suggested and continue to suggest, that it Tactical Combat can be auto resolved, or minimally resolved, or played out, depending on the players needs at the time.
So you never want to engage in tactical combat? Fine. Auto Resolve.
Built a new class of vessel and want to see how she performs? Chose Cinematic Resolution
Want to command your vessels to victory, turn by turn, all 200 of them? Click the Fight! button.
One can find innovation in bettering a system of turn-by-turn tactical combat. I simply cannot see why adding another dimension to the game is a problem. We're paying enough for it.
If I repeat myself (which I don't really intend to), I apologize, but . . . it seems to me that erring on the side of giving players MORE choice, not less, ought to be the goal of a great game. You may not choose to fight every battle on the map tactically, but you may choose 1 or 2.
ESPECIALLY when you factor in the multiplayer element, tactical combat can be very rewarding, and the difference between a guaranteed win and a stunning upset. Isn't that what strategy games are all about?
Captain Tolan T. Grimm, Grand High Poohbah,
The Grimmian Union
I totally agree. I want tactical combat in this game and I hope we'll get it one one day via expansion.
The problem with adding TC is that it would probably destroy the battle viewer system, which while good in GC2, I expect will be great in GC3. I can't imagine anything cooler than designing a fleet of starships and watching a dramatic fleet battle unfold.
If I want to play tactical battles I'd play a tactical game. I want to play a civilization expansion, empire building game, so I play Civ and GalCiv. It's two different kind of games. I'm not opposed to making pre battle strategic choices, but clicking each little ship and clicking a target over and over seems boring and tedious to me.
I agree, with charon there, galciv3 does not need tactical battles, this is a civilization game, adding tactical battles (Total War series) draws out the game a lot longer, and gives the faster auto resolve a handicap. This unfortunately is why I find myself not playing that series too much as I've rarely completed a game and if I try to use tactical battles, I get bored after the first 20 or so and move on to another game.
I like a lot of the new features in GC3 even though most of them aren't in the alpha. I don't like Black-Holes as seen in the last podcast, will they gobble up ships? doesn't matter there just so unrealistic but then there is an option to disable them.
And I'm also a longtime player of the GalCiv series [check my join date]. Twilight was the best version but it had its shortcomings although the ship designer wasn't one of them, unlike the planetary invasion screen. I would like more Tactical Combat but not complete micro-management, and I'm guessing that that's what I'll end up with via the Fleet Designer, except I'll probably still have a mediocre Planetary Invasion screen and mechanic.
And for all those who probably were never in the GalCiv1 beta and just have memories of Dread Lords or later, I know that 3-D maps were introduced at some stage in a Beta version although you will not find any trace of it now as only final version builds remain. I will admit that the 3-D version didn't last long, only 1 or 2 iterations of beta but it was implemented in 32-bit technology ten or more years ago. It was only a map of around 15x15x3 or maybe 25x25x3 , the size is immaterial - the point is I know it existed in a GalCiv with Windows'95 with 6-faced Cubes. it worked well and it puzzles me still as to why it was abandoned.
So basically I agree with the original poster and agree with whoever it was that said a lot of you just want GalCiv 2.5, although I'm begining to believe that GalCiv2.5 will probably be Fun when it's first launch final version is available.
We are fully in control of diplomXcy.
We are fully in control of eXpansion.
We are fully in control of eXploitation.
We aren't fully in control of eXtermination.
we are missing a huge fan base, and fun. It only adds gameplay. This isn't totally new, many 4X games try to have TC and have two combat options that work fine.
Apart from the hard core nay sayers of times past, alot of frequent users want this, enough to actually do it.
In a game called total war, I don't expect there to be a balance anywhere.
Do you have any prove for that? Because I have a hard time believing, that the devs went from 2D map in the alpha, to 3D map at some point in the beta, and then back to 2D again. That's just way too much work. However, if that actually was the case, then it's even more puzzling, that when somebody asks why the map is in 2D instead of 3D, none of the repliers (not even Frogboy and Kryo) mention, that the devs tried 3D maps, but abandoned the idea.
Schaefespeare, show me a 3D map design on a 2D monitor that doesn't get garbled and confusing when rotating or moving units. Also show me a non-complicated way to move a ship from X,Y,Z to X1,Y1,Z1 by point and click versus typing coordinates every time.
I agree I would love a playable 3D design, however, I haven't seen any that are practical.
Hmmm that makes sense, lucky jack, gaunathor, and the devs would have mentioned it. So I think he's lying and trolling. (at least for now I do.)
thanks gaunathor for the info! +1
Hexes are excellent to have on a planet landscape whereas a serviceable 3D map (or a clever illusion of one) would be tremendous to have in a space game. Oh well, maybe next time.
Here's hoping that this evolution will be a success.
You can all disbelieve me if you want to and think I'm trolling and of course you expect me to deny it as I do deny it. I have no proof and can't provide any because, as I said, only the final builds are available. I just have the memory of playing in a 3-D GalCiv beta. I am not a programmer although I have studied programming [for business primarily and many years ago] therefore I'm not able to build a demonstration either. While you may think these are just excuses I know it's the truth.
Maybe LuckyJack doesn't want to remember or just doesn't because maybe he missed it, we were all probably a lot busier in 2006; same goes for Gaunthor and I'm not calling you liars either, I'm not trying to get personal with insults or whatever. I'm just stating for the record what I remember playing and perhaps it wasn't true 3-D engine-wise but just some trick to make it look like 3-D but it certainly had the feel of real 3-D with the ability to move up. down, either side and backwards and forwards into adjacent spaces. You didn't need to alter your perspective, in those days pretty much all games had only one plane of view, except for "Populous : The Begining" .
If what you said is true, then there would be proof for it out there. Screenshots, forum posts, mention of it in previews, etc. Also, changing the map from 2D to 3D (and back again) is non-trivial, so you'd expect there to be dev journals about why the devs decided to make those changes. However, I couldn't find anything.
From what I've read, the beta for GalCiv 2 began March 2005 (here is a post for Beta 2) and ended early 2006 (Frogboy's IT'S GOLD post is from Feb. 7th 2006). Maybe Lucky Jack, or anybody else who was in the GalCiv 2 beta, can clarify how beta-access worked back then. However, if it was anything like it was for DA and TotA, then you'd at least need a Stardock-account to buy the game. So, unless you've got an older account, or knew somebody who got access to the beta, I don't see how you could've played it.
I'm not calling you a troll, or a liar, but I do question your memory. Are you absolutely certain, that you are not thinking of a different game? Sword of the Stars 1 has a 3D map, and it was still in beta in April 2006.
You just don't have the level of control you want. Games that combine Civ building with tactical battles up being primarily war focused. The tactical part tends to take over the game. Remember, GC is already a game without tactical battles, and I love it that way. So I love GC for what is is, you are trying to turn GC into something that it isn't.
Quit saying that nonsense, galciv is a great game but its not a holy unchanging entity. It changes player to player and over time since the very first iteration. (remember that chart brad posted about the evolution of galciv?)
People asking for this should be catered fairly, this has been asked for many times from games spanning the years. Space games need space combat, it makes sense, it fit, its fair.
Whatever game experience you used as a example, thing about that Vs now. SD a heavily rooted 4X game maker that with all the planned announcements is definitely not going to forget about making this game for combat. In fact its the opposite.
So think when its all done and released, this can be a expansion that can't effect core 4X mechanics and makes moderate players like me happy.
Tactical combat and 3D maps are desired by a very vocal minority. I'd hate to see GC turn into a completely different game. Which is what TC and 3D would do.
There's a reason MoO3 is so hated. It was radically different than MoO2. I don't want that to happen to GC.
I say if it ain't broke, don't fix it.
Although, many say allow us to auto-resolve and you get the same effect as a tactical battle, the game resources will be spent trying to ensure that the tactical battles are fun. More importantly, it is inevitable that the tactical battles will favor the player and thus not playing the tactical battles we'll not have as good as a result without. More importantly, things that we could tactically solve easily, but auto-resolve doesn't do a great job doing, it will cause a lot of frustration because we know it is an easy battle tactically, but auto-resolve is not doing the same things.
Not to mention, a multiplayer tactical battle game inevitable takes an extremely long time unless you eliminate them entirely.
I would rather the developers spend more of their time on the overall picture aspects of the game and add a micromanaged tactical battle interface, if necessary, as an expansion pack. I would like to see a cinematic view of the battles at the very least.
Even if they add it as an expansion, tactical combat would become the new face of GC going forward, and would be expected in future iterations. IMO, leave it out. People who desire TC can go play a tactics based game if they desire.
Can't you see! This is the secret to world peace! It starts with having tactical combat!
Really dude a real minority is TBS gaming, combat would make it less of a nitch and more of a well rounder for most people in the world since smart games are rare and combat is plenty, so let it be tactical
Enough about moo, I hear so much about it and its so old its a different era...IT MAKES ME SICK!!! ( )
All I want is what I want, and as it happens we both don't want a game lacking in 4X. When you think about it, the stars have finally aligned and this is a great time for both. We both want a good, smart, and sophisticated 4X that gets better and better. We both don't want real combat to ruin the games lovely features in the process, neither do you. I think its great to have and as it turns out, we actually agree!
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