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Aredhran
06-07-2004, 10:31:10
Don't know if this has been posted before but...

http://www.gdconf.com/archives/2004/johnson_soren.zip

That's a powerpoint presentation from Soren Johnson who is project lead and designer on the Civ 4 project at Firaxis. A lot of blah blah (it's from a Game Developer's conference where a bunch of gaming so-called "gurus" gather to talk about the industry.

Anyway, there is a few hints at what they're trying to do with Civ 4 (make sure you check the presenter's notes, starting around slide 45)

Aredhran

MDA
06-07-2004, 11:36:17
Do we have to? :p

Aredhran
06-07-2004, 12:39:45
own goal

Funkodrom
06-07-2004, 12:54:13
Soren Johnson...

Soren J...

jsorense...

!!!

:eek:

JM^3
06-07-2004, 19:54:56
I will buy it

Jon Miller

MDA
07-07-2004, 03:08:46
You're too drunk to walk to the store, and you couldn't possibly type your credit card number correctly.

LoD
07-07-2004, 09:00:57
After reading this, I doubt I'll buy Civ IV. They're basically saying "Hey, the current fan-base it's too small, so let's screw the legacy and the current fans and market it for 13-year-olds." Also what astounds me is the lack of competence from the guy (the "countable" hit points was one of the most critisized features, since it randomized the battles, and the "unique unit traits" was already in SMAC).

Aredhran
07-07-2004, 09:39:42
Originally posted by Funkodrom
Soren Johnson...

Soren J...

jsorense...

!!!

:eek:

My thoughts exactly when I saw the guy's name :clueless:

Aredhran
07-07-2004, 09:46:08
LoD, I think that could be a good or a bad thing. Wait and see. They could make something good, or completely fuck up. Introducing new features can be good or bad (for example, I thought that the Culture thing in Civ3 was great, while their rework of the corruption completely killed the game for me)

Still some of the things he said make sense (like avoiding feature creep, etc).

Keep in mind that they're out there to make money, and they're not going to make more by targeting a shrinking user community of old farts, hard-core fans like us, so the only options we have are
- accept that and try to live with the "new and improved" version of a game we like
- fuck them and keep playing civ2 or smac
- write our own game

LoD
07-07-2004, 15:45:44
I think you misinterpreted my stand. I'm well aware that it's capitalism, and it's their right to fuck it up if they think it'll bring them money - but likewise I have right to simply state that it's bad :).
Still you're right that we should wait. And, anyway, about point three - such a solution already exists, it's called Freeciv (www.freeciv.org). I'm still putting high hopes in it, although it's really more crawling than moving forward right now....

One more thing - what they could do is make a game with two modes, one for the hardcore fans, one for the rest.

MDA
07-07-2004, 18:52:30
Well, that would be two games before it got very far into development.

Darkstar
07-07-2004, 19:41:29
Originally posted by LoD
One more thing - what they could do is make a game with two modes, one for the hardcore fans, one for the rest.

They tried that with MoO3. It was supposed to let the Hard Core guys "dive deep into micromanagement", but still let the New or Lightweights "just run the top of the empire".

So, the lesson is: Be careful what you wish for. ;)

I'd already heard they were "dumbing down" Civ4. The feedback alone from Soren concerning the Civ4 Wish (various) Lists at Poly tells you that. Hell, last he stated there, they were taking out basic elements of the game.

I'll take a look through the presentation (haven't yet), but I'm not too worried. Half of the time, these "while in development" presentations don't have a single thing in common with the actual product.

Deacon
08-07-2004, 21:45:27
Freeciv should have AI diplomacy and sounds by the year 2525. :)

LoD
09-07-2004, 00:06:38
Darkstar: thanks for the info.

Deacon: that will certainly be true in 2525, since it has both already :).

Chris
09-07-2004, 02:36:23
Listening to the 'fans' at poly is what fucked up civ 3.

HelloKitty
09-07-2004, 02:49:37
I think its always a warning sign having your official boards run by a fansite or something like warcry.

Vincent
09-07-2004, 07:10:14
Originally posted by Darkstar
Civ4 Wish (various) Lists at Poly LOL, they already got a Civ4 Forum! I checked it very briefly and found this:
We know there will be a 3d, tile-based map.
We know that "Civics" and "Religion" are being added, but don't know what that means.
We know that "unfun" elements (according to Soren) such as pollution and corruption are being either removed or signifigantly changed.
We know that there will be more emphasis on getting new fans than on pleasing the most hard core ones.
We know that an effort to make as much of the game modifiable by fans as possible is being made.
I can't believe it! They're goint to remove "unfun" elements. I thought those were important - obviously they're trying to convert the game into SimGolf! Civ4 will SUCK!!!!

Vincent
09-07-2004, 07:17:50
What was the last big idea SM had? SimGolf was not a sequel, but not unique and certainly not a great game, - jumping on the Sims craze bandwagon. Sad. SM's Gettysburg had some nice ideas and was a nice attempt to do a realtime strategy game. But it seemed unfinished to me - I think it was a stripped down civil war game, just the battle engine. They needed quick money. The dinosaurs? OK. SMAC was another Civ clone. What was his last big unique game? Colonization?

Shining1
09-07-2004, 11:00:31
If they keep this up, eventually one of the sequels will be fun by accident:D.

Aredhran
09-07-2004, 13:00:23
:lol:@ Shiny

MDA
09-07-2004, 14:00:28
monkeys and typewriters :)

Chris
09-07-2004, 15:14:51
SM is redoing 'Pirates" from 1989.

Corruption and pollution were way overdone in civ 3, I used to spend a lot of time cleaning up polution on civ 3, which was just 'busy-work' really.

MDA
09-07-2004, 15:42:03
I generally had a dozen engineers/continent on auto-cleanup by the end of a long game.

Vincent
09-07-2004, 15:48:36
These one-step-forward-onestep-backwars units?

JM^3
09-07-2004, 17:39:01
colonization was also heavily influenced by BR

SM's great work was all done pre93

Jon Miller

MDA
09-07-2004, 18:08:21
Colonization was great. I still have it on floppies. I wonder if it would run?

I may not have a 3.5 inch drive anymore.

JM^3
09-07-2004, 18:17:43
I have it on floppies too

I didn't get a 3.5 drive until I needed one to install a driver

Jon Miler

JM^3
09-07-2004, 18:18:22
it can be found on the underdogs site

JM

Chris
09-07-2004, 19:46:41
Works from there also, even has sound.

Deacon
09-07-2004, 21:02:53
There are a few old Microprose titles at 5dollarsoftware.com. MOO1, MOO2, Colonization, and Civ 2.

Originally posted by LoD
... Deacon: that will certainly be true in 2525, since it has both already :).

Hm... I might check it out. Last time I played, the AIs had Destroyers and Alpine troops against my Musketeers and Ironclads.

Darkstar
09-07-2004, 21:17:05
Poly had a Civ4 forum before Firaxis announced there would be a Civ4. But it wasn't until the official announcement that the Civ4 forum got serious traffic, from what I remember.

Sids last original idea? That would be... never. Everything he's ever done, had a "prior art" on computers already published. But it's really difficult to come up with something truly original. ;)

Chris
09-07-2004, 22:20:25
Doesn't much matter.

Civ 4 only means the "I have been banned!" and "Is poly down?" threads will continue here at least another two years.

Darkstar
09-07-2004, 22:30:12
I really don't think the fans "ruined" Civ3. That was a business decision to "make it easier" on Firaxis's part. Now, MoO3... that I think you can blame in part on the fans. Wanting MORE MORE MORE! And being given it.

JM^3
09-07-2004, 22:55:29
I think that MOO3 is the best example of what happens when you let the fans direct the gameplay

far better is to do what you want, than ask if the fans have any ideas for improvements (simple ones) when you are in the Beta stage

most won't be included, but if nothing else you will have ideas for expansions

and I can't forsee a time when I won't post at both apolyton and CG

Jon Miller

Vincent
10-07-2004, 08:52:17
Originally posted by Darkstar
Sids last original idea? That would be... never. Everything he's ever done, had a "prior art" on computers already published. But it's really difficult to come up with something truly original. ;) But he had some unique (and well) designes like Pirates or Civ. I even liked that simplified flight simulator clone ;)

Chris
10-07-2004, 14:49:27
The golf thing was really stupid.

I have seen some of the beta stuff for Pirates, it may include...ballroom dancing!

Vincent
10-07-2004, 15:13:44
Arrr

Chris
10-07-2004, 16:23:26
Better shake a leg, matey!

Darkstar
10-07-2004, 16:55:28
Originally posted by Vincent
But he had some unique (and well) designes like Pirates or Civ. I even liked that simplified flight simulator clone ;)

SM Pirates wasn't the first pirate game.
SM Civ wasn't the first world conquest game.

Sid credits Bruce Shelley with doing the entire design of Civ (translating the Civilizations *board game* into a computer game that was fun to play), BTW. Sid just went back to his computer and coded that day's build as directed, every day. He says so in several different interviews he gives on "the early days". But hey, we just care that it was *fun*. :D

Chris
10-07-2004, 17:18:15
BTW, I met Bruce Shelley years ago, when we worked for Avalon Hill, the board wargame company that did the Civ boardgame.

Darkstar
10-07-2004, 17:25:39
Cool!

Vincent
10-07-2004, 17:28:34
I think pirates was a very good design (it may not have been the first pirate gam) because it had different aspects and offered different careers and strategies. The way the single components were put together was unique, though the single parts were not. It reminded me of "Defender of the crown" + "7 Cities of Gold".
But it had a pirate movie feel, which was pretty clever for a mid 80s game. I wonder if it will work today

Chris
10-07-2004, 17:40:23
Pirates was indeed a cool game. Snappy little pirate-like music diddys, plus fun and easy game play.

I like Defender of the Crown also, for such a simple game, it was a lot of fun.

Darkstar
10-07-2004, 17:42:20
When was the last time Vincent said something nice about computer games? It has been a long while. Missing the old days? ;)

Vincent
10-07-2004, 17:46:41
Oh, I could say a lot nice things about games. BF1942, Far Cry or Warcraft III. I like to play those.
But I wonder why Sid is a Gaming God and how he keeps that image.

Darkstar
10-07-2004, 18:02:52
It's really just a bit of branding, being around so long, and having been "The name" for some groups that made successful games like Civ, Pirates, and Railroad Tycoon.

Anyone that sticks around for a long time in game design and gets to be the face for the team will eventually be a "legend". If they are part of several successes, then they will be a "god". Simple really.

Vincent
10-07-2004, 18:08:39
I think it has to do with writing your name on the front side of the box. I think that was his cool move (IIRC the "bunten Brother" were on the back of 7 Cities. Gotta check that)

Chris
10-07-2004, 19:41:50
It didn't hurt that he had some great games with his name on them.

The first two civs were great, and pirates was lots of fun.

JM^3
10-07-2004, 19:44:31
AH rocked (and I wish they hadn't gone out of business, anyone know where a copy of the original Civ board game is? I need one)

as did 7 cities of gold (first strategy game I played on the computer, I was something like 8)

JM