Author Topic: Feedback on a tech tree  (Read 1949 times)

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Offline Erik Luken

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Feedback on a tech tree
« on: June 30, 2015, 04:45:30 PM »
This is a tech tree for a world-building framework. Any feedback would be appreciated.
 

Offline Panopticon

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Re: Feedback on a tech tree
« Reply #1 on: June 30, 2015, 06:07:27 PM »
I have a couple off the cuff reactions.

Anarchy, not sure why that is a step before tribalism, the tribe as a unit seems to exist even in the other Great Apes that exist today, perhaps you have a different idea than I do about tribes, but it seems out of place.

Your weapon trees could be interlinked with other stuff, Pikes for example really came into use after cavalry charges became a thing if I recall correctly, and a lot of other weapons had popularity increase after changes in armor, or with metalworking improvements, neither of which I see on your tree.

That all depends on how complex you want your tree to end up being I guess.
 

Offline Erik Luken

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Re: Feedback on a tech tree
« Reply #2 on: June 30, 2015, 06:33:16 PM »
Anarchy is probably badly named. It is a lack of government. Might makes Right. He with the most pointy sticks wins.

Ages, such as Bronze and Iron require a set amount of technologies researched before they may be entered.

Interlinking is possible, but I'd really like to keep it as simple as possible.
 

Offline Maltay

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Re: Feedback on a tech tree
« Reply #3 on: July 01, 2015, 12:08:03 AM »
Feedback:

Axes leading to swords seems weird.  The predecessor to swords would have been daggers.  Maybe even simple crafting tools like adzes if you want to keep the early stone age theme firmly to the left of the framework.

A better precursor to the mace would be the hammer.

Arguably, a personal ranged weapon could constitute a thematic predecessor to ranged siege weapons.  Such that siege weapons would have multiple prerequisites.  Also, not sure why you say generic archery before moving into the representative weapons.  You did not do this with spears, axes, etc.  Also, the long bow came before the short bow.  The longbow was Upper Paleolithic.  The short bow (i.e., recurve or composite bow more appropriately) was not until the second millennium BC.

I do not understand why anarchy and tribalism are separated out from other forms of government.  Beyond which, I do not see that writing is a prerequisite for government.  Only advanced forms of government.  You can also get into semantic arguments about writing.  For example, the Incans were quite complex, yet did not have a formal writing system.  Rather, the Incas had a notational record keeping system, essentially numeric.  Folks still argue whether these quipus could have been used to store more than numeric values.  The same sort of argument applies to things like Linear B.  Moderately advanced government only seems to need some record keeping system (e.g., calendars, taxes, duties, revenue, etc.), rather than full on writing (e.g., laws, mandates, regulations, treaties, etc.).

I think sailing should have different prerequisites.  It is less about mathematics, and more about optics, navigation, etc.  These, to an extent, depend on mathematics (e.g., dead reckoning), but are their own area of discovery I would think.

Chivalry should have more prerequisites.  It is an honor system that is deeply cultural and tied up in the system of government.  Think a feudal society with some concept of noblesse oblige.
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Offline alex_brunius

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Re: Feedback on a tech tree
« Reply #4 on: July 01, 2015, 02:35:24 AM »
Feedback:

Axes leading to swords seems weird.  The predecessor to swords would have been daggers.  Maybe even simple crafting tools like adzes if you want to keep the early stone age theme firmly to the left of the framework.

A better precursor to the mace would be the hammer.

I really like the idea to look at all weapons from the perspective off what utility tool they are derived from. A society being experts in working with stone/hammers more naturally might gravitate to being able to craft such weapons.

So Spears/Bows would have hunting as prerequisites.

Axes are connected to some woodwork/lumber handling ( It's no coincidence Vikings and wooden tribes also to a quite large degree used axes as weapons ).
 

Offline Panopticon

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Re: Feedback on a tech tree
« Reply #5 on: July 01, 2015, 02:42:10 AM »
As far as simple crafting tools go, axes pretty much are it, if the goal is to have a non-complicated tech tree and limit multiple requirements, then that progression works okay.

Honestly, could possibly abstract the weapons categories more, something like:
Simple weaponry(clubs, axes, spears)--- Intermediate weaponry (maces-assorted polearms)--- Advanced weaponry(swords, Pikes, other polearms)

Something like that anyway, I honestly don't know the timeline for when various things came into effect, and different cultures had different priorities so it might change, I am just assuming something vaguely European based from what we can see here.

Some form of relatively permanent record keeping seems to be a pretty good component of a government, but you could possibly add an intermediate stage with the prerequisite of a strong Oral History tradition, such as the Norse or a lot of Native American tribes used, this managed to keep stories and history fairly well preserved and they organized themselves fairly well if I recall.

I recall massed Longbow tactics being new and upsetting to the traditional armored cavalry of Europe way back when, but I think crossbows were used at the same time, possibly have them both split off from Short Bow rather than one be a prerequisite for the other, Crossbow leading to siege engine might be a good idea too.

 

Offline Paul M

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Re: Feedback on a tech tree
« Reply #6 on: July 01, 2015, 02:56:15 AM »
some feedback:

For archery: The self bow, or a single wooden shaft is very old but the long bow was more than just a strong bow but also a lifetime in training. 

Principly:  archery goes:  Selfbow-->Longbow (military selfbow)-->crossbow .OR.  Selfbow+horseback riding-->composite bow-->crossbow

Crossbows actually don't require any real development of archery but more of metalworking and such.  And a need for them.  They came about because you needed a ranged weapon any fool could use with pretty much no training.  That was also the advantage of early firearms...they could be trained in weeks rather than your whole life.

Weapons such as maces, flails and hammers only came about as battlefield weapons due to the use of heavy armour.  Otherwise they would be lumped into peasent weapons used by militia.

Lots of other weapons exist only because of armour, either it allowed you to use the weapon or else the weapon developed to defeat the armour.  Two handed swords, maces, morning stars, hammer, picks, etc all came about once armour got effective at stopping edged weapons.  So the development of Plate Armour basically is a prerequisit for these weapons.  Previous to that you had to have armour and shield...outside of the Japanese who for cultural reasons didn't use shields the most common weapon mix was shield and (hand weapon).  Once armour gets good enough that you don't gain from the shield you both can and need to use a two handed weapon.

Also good quality bronze weapons are better than poor quality steel weapons.  The development we see with bronze weapons being superceeded by steel weapons mainly occured because bronze was very expensive since tin was rare.  If tin had been common then likely bronze weapons would have stayed around a lot longer.

Horse units could go:
Animal husbandry-->horseback riding-->light cavalry-->light cavalry+composite bow-->horse archers
                                                                                   -->light cavalry+stirup+heavy armour-->shock cavalry  (or something like that)

I would also not focus on specific weapons but rather on tactical formations.  As really it doesn't matter if you have a roman legion armed with short swords, long swords, hammers, maces, or axes.  They are still a roman legion.  And the fact they have a certain TO is more important than the E generally speaking. 
 

Offline Panopticon

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Re: Feedback on a tech tree
« Reply #7 on: July 01, 2015, 03:30:19 AM »
Definitely agree that armor should be more linked with weapon development, although you could just assume the armor improvement goes along with the weapon improvement if you don't want to add another tech line. It isn't entirely accurate that way, but abstracts it well enough I think.
 

Offline Erik Luken

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Re: Feedback on a tech tree
« Reply #8 on: July 01, 2015, 08:29:06 AM »
A lot of the units are generalized. A swordsman is a swordsman if he's a Japanese samurai or an English knight. Armor is worked into the ages, Stone age gets no bonuses to the ATK/DEF, Bronze gets +1 to each, Iron +2 to each, Steel +3 to each. So a Stone age spearman is 0/2, while a Steel age is 3/5.

The game is fantasy based (with my inherent Northern European background biases :) ). Some of the tech tree was cribbed directly from Civ 5.

As for the archer units, there is the slinger (no tech), archer (archery), short bowman (short bow), long bowman (long bow), and crossbowman (crossbow).

Anarchy is sitting out by itself mainly because it is the default government type. Tribalism follows anarchy mainly because it is not necessary to have writing, but by the time you want a monarchy or republic, there will be taxes and laws involved.

I could rename a lot of the techs away from what they directly give. Tribalism could be Oral Tradition. Something along those line.

A limitation (this of Word) is that I am using the org chart smart shape, and it won't do multi-linked boxes. Of course, I could just do it in something other than word and have all the links I want then :)
 

Offline Erik Luken

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Re: Feedback on a tech tree
« Reply #9 on: July 01, 2015, 02:54:13 PM »
I know, bad form to reply to myself.

Just thought of this. The scope of the game is at least 12,000 years. There are three Ages (not to be confused with tech ages); First Age, Second Age, and Third Age.

First Age is limited to only Dragons and Rephaim (proto-vampires).
Second Age adds Dwarves, Orcs, Elves, and Scale-kin (lizardmen in effect).
Third Age adds Humans, Gnomes, Goblins, and Centaurs.

First Age to Second Age, established races lose 1/2 their population.
Second Age to Third Age, established races lose 1/2 their population.
Third Age to Fourth/Present/etc Age, First Age races lose 90% of their remaining population and Second Age races lose 1/2 population.

The population loss is a handwavium so that the world is not overrun by first and second age races, and to establish the mythos that those races are rare and in decline.
 

Offline boggo2300

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Re: Feedback on a tech tree
« Reply #10 on: July 01, 2015, 05:01:13 PM »
You could also give your previous age races very low birth rates, which work well with long lifespans which are traditional for the races you list.

Incidentally historically developing a republic usually preceded developing an empire  ;)

Matt
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Offline Erik Luken

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Re: Feedback on a tech tree
« Reply #11 on: July 01, 2015, 05:52:36 PM »
You could also give your previous age races very low birth rates, which work well with long lifespans which are traditional for the races you list.

Incidentally historically developing a republic usually preceded developing an empire  ;)

Matt

Possible. Population growth is controlled by the racial Aggressiveness / 10. So they get anywhere from 1 - 10 population. I just checked, both First Age races are already -1 population, so they get 1-9 pop/turn. Pretty much all Second and Third Age races gain population in certain terrain types. Except human. They gain in all terrain (bloody rabbits).
 

Offline boggo2300

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Re: Feedback on a tech tree
« Reply #12 on: July 01, 2015, 07:40:07 PM »
you could add a factor in for race age so the older a race gets the less fecund it becomes,  ie, a race from the first age gets a -1 to it's population growth per age after that, so say 8 in 1st age, 7 in second age, 6 in third age.

you could also have a nice apocalyptic war or calamity between each age like Tolkien :)
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