Some reflections...

Sovereignty is a turn-based fantasy strategy game for the PC. It combines a kingdom management campaign game with a general's level tactical battle game.

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JorgenCAB
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Some reflections...

Post by JorgenCAB » Tue May 26, 2015 1:55 pm

After playing with the game for a while I have done the following reflections on the overall experience.

I really like the tactical part of the game... it is simple yet engaging and deep. This is a really good design. I also like that you can only fight battle where you have heroes involved. It give some sort of strategic fog of war like experience.

The use of resources still seem to lack quite allot. Some nations simply have too little and/or too little money to trade for them while other have oo problem at all and can trade for them without any problem. I also find that there are too little use for most of the trade resources and it is kind of annoying when I get spammed by trade proposals of resources I have no use for what so ever. Sure... I could trade for them and then use them to trade for more valuable resources, in some instances that can be advisable... but I feel that the game really need to expand on the resource concept and make them much more important.

The diplomacy in the game feel sort of unfinished... the interaction between countries are very one dimensional and there are no connection between different countries in any way. The AI are very predisposed to declare war... over and over and over for no apparent reason. If there were more diplomatic interaction then realms could form real alliances and broker peace deals together and actually have wars between larger alliances. I really think this is needed to make anything but combat fun. At the least you need to be able to broker peace deals... either by threat or simply by trade deals.

The economy of the game are pretty simple and i like that... the only thing I do dislike are the fact that raising troops do not effect the economy in the proper way. During the middle ages manpower was a scarce resource and if they were killed in war that severely effected your long term economy. The game simply do not reflect this in any way... you can just recruit new soldiers which have no direct effect on you economy other than by maintenance. There was a reason why mercenaries was such a large part of medieval warfare. I also think this is one reason why reals can just wage war in infinity... there are no restraint on the amount of casualties one can take except the gold in your coffers. It is like every soldier in this game comes from an external source and all of them are mercenaries.

Breca
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Re: Some reflections...

Post by Breca » Wed May 27, 2015 1:56 am

Some great points, Jorgen. I think you're highlighting areas we'd like to work on.

Regarding manpower, your point is well-taken, and I'm not opposed to manpower principally. However, there are certain core areas of the design that we'd like to preserve, and one is that small nations must be able to compete (even if its a challenge) against large nations. Core to the design of Sovereignty that the game reinforces over and over is that small realms can still be viable, and that larger realms face new 1st world challenges. What we don't want is a mid-game steamroller that just becomes a boring foregone conclusion.

With regard to manpower, there is a danger that small nations just get depleted rapidly, where either 1) they are unable to do anything but click End Turn and wait for their manpower to recover, or 2) just get overrun. That's not very much fun. Meanwhile large nations are better able to absorb the losses. This has the potential to undermine the core design.

So if we include something like manpower, it needs to be handled in such a way as to give players something new to think about, while still giving small realms a fighting chance.

Breca

JorgenCAB
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Re: Some reflections...

Post by JorgenCAB » Wed May 27, 2015 5:14 am

I really like the overall design of the game, it is very fun.

In regards of manpower I do understand what you mean and there are most probably ways to deal with this. For example smaller nation will get more manpower the closer areas are from their home provinces and the capital can give you more than normal the manpower. Larger nations will need more garrison and field troops and will get less manpower from their bigger territory than smaller nations, thus there will be a balance. Similar to how the economy work.

You should be able to get manpower back when you disband units, that way you will not just waste the units if you don't really have to.

Some of the smaller countries can get some slightly better deals from mercenaries which don't require so much manpower to raise, these troops are after all drawn from a much wider area and not necessarily from the realm. This will make a bigger distinction between regular and mercenary troops.

You could force recruit units even if the manpower pool are down to zero, but this would lower the economy of a province by a permanent point and you obviously get more manpower from certain provinces than other... so a larger empire will get quite few manpower from a remote wasteland province than a core plain province for example.

Some units such as certain creatures and elite units should require very little manpower, this will also make sure that smaller realms can compete since they need much fewer manpower to support their more elite armies. All in all it should mainly be standard units that require a great deal of manpower but should perhaps be much cheaper in maintenance, their maintenance should be in the form of manpower rather than money.

Just some ideas for that concept in case you would ever consider it. :)

In regard to diplomacy something that I do miss that I think should be part of the game is some form of royal marriages or other means to tie realms together. These things were pretty important during this time period, at least between human empires, but I do believe that both elven ans dwarven empires could use them with each other as well. Or some other mechanism that shows the internal politics of realm which have a great effect on external politics. The use of vassal states could be one form of beating an opponent. During this time it was more common to create vassal states rather than incorporate their territory into your own realm, it was much easier to decentralize the control. Which also can lead to rebellions when an oppressed realm rises up against its master, or they gain a sudden support from a rival state.

Just some more food for thought... ;)

generalgonzo
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Re: Some reflections...

Post by generalgonzo » Wed May 27, 2015 9:34 am

I think manpower is a vital topic!

I also understand the point of view from Breca, but how bout this:
If manpower is depleted, you can still raise armies which are the same unit but consists of mercenaries and due to that costs are higher. Until manpower regenerates that´s your option if your in need of troops.
Would fit, because it will hurt your economy much more than regular troops....

JorgenCAB
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Re: Some reflections...

Post by JorgenCAB » Wed May 27, 2015 3:41 pm

One of the "problems" right now are that some realms can field almost 20 units on more than half their provinces after a while, granted most if it is cheap garrison units... but is this really intended?

It seems the game is just flooded with units after about 50-60 turns or so... some realms have so much money they can upgrade all their territory to max economic value and the able to field ridiculous number of armies, it is even worse if a human player have one of those realms. I also think this hamper the AI to do proper wars since they cant reach problematic areas with real armies with all those garrisons and regular troops in the way, so in a way it is helping me as a player that the AI cause severe traffic jams.

I guess that anything that make sure that troops in the field are sort of limited to a certain size might be a good thing.

If we again look back at how war was waged during the middle ages then standing armies and garrisons was fairly small. During war the sovereign of an area had to muster their troops and that was very taxing and so these armies could usually only be fielded for a couple of months... so wars tended to be short. After this the armies was dispersed and it was more or less impossible to recruit the same people twice in a certain period. I'm not saying the game should mirror this in any detail... it's just food for thought.

VALENT
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Re: Some reflections...

Post by VALENT » Tue Jun 30, 2015 9:24 am

Some conditions of Nations ask for TRADE for bieer or others things with others Nation.Well, good but how function this trade ? What i have to do to obtain this trade? I have to contact theese nations and after? Somebody can explain me please :? with precisions (french)
Thanks
Ph

MarcHameleers
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Re: Some reflections...

Post by MarcHameleers » Thu Jul 02, 2015 11:07 pm

Agreed on the too many units thing.

perhaps A national tag of how many units a nation can have, and then add 2 or 3 per province ( this could differ per nation ). That way a small nation would Always have good stacks, and a large nation way more units, but not a full stack everywhere. Militaristic nations could have more units. If you lose provinces, you keep the units you have, but the overstack could cost you some gold, and losses cannot be replaced until you are below the allowed number.

Same for ships. Naval powers a higher base number, and then 2 per coastal province and 6 per harbor, or something like that.

Rvlion
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Re: Some reflections...

Post by Rvlion » Fri Jul 03, 2015 10:42 am

MarcHameleers wrote:Agreed on the too many units thing.

perhaps A national tag of how many units a nation can have, and then add 2 or 3 per province ( this could differ per nation ). That way a small nation would Always have good stacks, and a large nation way more units, but not a full stack everywhere. Militaristic nations could have more units. If you lose provinces, you keep the units you have, but the overstack could cost you some gold, and losses cannot be replaced until you are below the allowed number.

Same for ships. Naval powers a higher base number, and then 2 per coastal province and 6 per harbor, or something like that.
This game resembles a game I played for an awful long time namely Birthright: The Gorgon's Alliance. In Birthright you could buy troops separate in each province(once per game year), but the amount was restricted to the province level.yet at the same time you could have dozens of armies containing 15 army units (which you often needed to fight the ridiculous amount of armies the Gorgon threw at you... Still fear his armies of skeletons). Being used to so many stacks of armies I considered the amount of army units usable in this game actually quite low, so I had to adapt from my old play style of simply having the biggest army to having a well balanced army.

As far as the many units on the field... A well balanced army should be able to succeed most of the time especially against the "cheapest units spam" thing.
The only problem I have with the army "spam" would be if the AI nations do not have the same financial restrictions as the player.

The only nation that actually annoys me a lot during my conquests of the whole continent is Hadrigel and the Ehrbrucker Landsknecht spamming it often does. They are the strongest unit in general they have, fast to build (1 turn) and cheaper to build and maintain then their Pikemen who are a long weaker...
To make the game more balanced I do think that the production and maintenance costs of the Ehrbrucker Landsknecht and the Pikemen should actually be reverse.
Image
The Iron and beer restriction should be the same, but with 3 beer and 1 iron production per turn it does not matter a lot anyway.

JosephM
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Re: Some reflections...

Post by JosephM » Fri Jul 03, 2015 3:59 pm

Hello guys,

I've been playing the game a lot as Dragonhold and I thought I'd join in this chat. Although in principle Manpower could work, I feel that it would add inbalance as the Devs say. Maybe a war-weariness option would work better, where having large armies causes greater unrest. But using Dragonhold as an example, they have got to be able to compete with troop numbers, as they are small and surrounded by some quite big empires. In this case they are militaristic, so perhaps they would have a lower war-weariness.

However I've already fed back to the devs about battles. Personally as Dragonhold, I have two armies, each with a hero, for offence, then use Spontoons as my holding units. 5 of them in a province and it takes a big stack for the enemy to kill them. I did think that perhaps there were too many Landsknechts, but if you have a balanced army, e.g. archers and ballista with some infantry and cavalry, then they aren't an issue. Ballista break the shield wall, then hit the unit with one archer and they lose most of their effectiveness. I think that although there is some balance needed, it is more individual balance needed among races and to some extent possibly between races. Looking at wood elves as an example, I see no reason why you'd ever buy the runners - they are comparatively expensive vs the minstrels or the nymphs,

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