Re: Map feel

John Morrow (
Tue, 11 Aug 92 20:00:58 EDT

Misc. Comments on the map feel:

In an attempt to clarify my previous rantings on structure revision, I offer
the following analysis of things...

There are several types of objects within Olympia, both implemented and
proposed. They are:

REGIONS: Large areas that an "infinite" number of units,
building, and cities can occupy. Regions have terrain types,
populations, and it requires many days to travel between them. Units
in one region cannot see units in another region.

CITIES: Medium sized areas that many (effectively "infinite")
units or buildings can occupy. Cities have a special form of
"terrain" type based on their internal population and it takes little
time (a day or less) to enter a city from the surrounding region.
You cannot see inside of a city from outside. Whether you can see
out of a city from inside is up to debate but I feel you should be
able to (I think there should be an advantage to moving out). Cities
may be fortified for defense.

BUILDINGS: Small areas that a limited number of units can occupy.
Buildings represent a very specific place within a region or city and
it takes no time (less than a day) to enter a building from the
surrounding region or city. Buildings may be fortified for defense.
(Ships can be thought of as movable buildings or can be made into
a separate type of object -- opinions?).

UNITS: Represent individual groups of men/women. They can
have inventories of individual items. One unit may lead other units
in a "stack" formation. Units may wield weapons or wear armor.

The relationship of the above is:

o Regions can contain units, buildings, and cities and you MOVE between them.

o Cities can contain units and buildings and you ENTER/EXIT them.

o Buildings can contain units and you ENTER/EXIT them.

o Units are the basic unit and can carry inventories.

What about STACKing? In my opinion, stacking should be reserved as the
way units combine together. This is the simplest way to deal with it.
With respect to attitudes, I think ENTER should allow units which T&ware
Neutral or better to pass while STACK should check for Cooperative or
better. MOVE would have no check. If only Cities, Buildings, and Units
but not Regions can be owned, the model becomes more one of city-states
than empires which might be a good thing. What does this look like?
Amazingly, a lot like the example of Cnossa we just got from Carl Edman.
What I would change is:

A) I feel that very few links should be less than 10 days long. Why?
I don't think units should be able to travel more than 2 or three
regions in a turn -- even with roads. Anything more is a defensive
nightmare. Picture those Orcs moving and attacking across 3 locations
or more per turn, not to mention warlords. If they are cities or
buildings, that is one thing but I have a problem with rapid region
hopping. The world seems small enough some times without it.

B) Suggestion: Maybe markets should be buildings representing either shops
selling one item each (I kinda like that feel) or the full function
markets available now. You enter a market to do your business.

C) I really don't like using "stack" for buildings and cities. I think
the relationship is significantly different. It is logical that a
neutral unit cannot stack with a neutral unit (picture a stranger
sitting down at the table with you at an inn) but it isn't logical
that a neutral unit cannot enter your inn (picture a stranger walking
into your inn). Stopping a unit from entering is an unfriendly act,
plain and simple, while preventing a unit from stacking need not be.
Stacking is also currently not hierarchical and, perhaps, it should
stay that way. Enter could be. The change would look (from BtA's
perspective) like:


Cnossa [204], plains, population: 510, weather: snow

Routes leaving Cnossa: North, River Asart, river, to Celenth [227], 9 days Northeast, River Estil, river, to Baraxes [232], 4 days East, wilderness, to Aldain [233], 9 days Southeast, wilderness, to Ossicus [230], 16 days South, River Asart, river, to Pallia [219], 4 days Southwest, wilderness, to Pentara [228], 20 days Region features: City of the Lost [2001], city, population: 1200, strength: 2, containing: Imperial Palace [3000], citadel, strength 5 Tower of the Art [3506], tower, strength 4, containing: BtA [801], individual, stacked over: 1) Leonic, Steward of the Art [1598], individual 2) Guardians of the Art [1002], number: 100 Market of Cnossa [1003], market Tavern of the Art [1004], inn Innocent bystanders [1006], number 5 City guard [1007], number: 50 Traveller [1008], individual, stacked over: 1) Travelling Companion [1010], individual Ruins of Old Cnossa [2002], ruins The Wranglers, 10 men [1009]


The owner of the Imperial Palace would own the city. Should he choose to, he could promote the tower or Traveller to owner. Region ownership could also be done but it is not as necessary with cities. "Ruins" would be the last phase of the "City, Town, Village, Ruins" cycle of decay due to neglect. You could still build in it or enter it but you cannot own or fortify it. Fortification maxes should be based on type.

D) I would do away with the population figures for structures. Make what you can see inside a function of observation/stealth with no observation meaning no idea what is inside (BTW, I have no units with observation so this hurts me in a big way).

E) Remember, if you define region ownership by the position of not only units by structures, owners should be allowed to promote cities and buildings as well. (I put an example above)

F) If you attack something owned, you attack the owner. If a city owns a region and a castle owns the city and a unit owns the castle, if you attack the city, you attack the castle and the owning unit and any units stacked with the owner as well, but not the others inside the city or castle.



John Morrow / Varian [856]

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