Aurora 4x

C# Aurora => C# Aurora => Topic started by: Steve Walmsley on January 27, 2019, 01:09:08 PM

Title: Wealth Generation
Post by: Steve Walmsley on January 27, 2019, 01:09:08 PM
I've been looking at a new campaign with a multi-race Earth start. As with many Earth start games I run into the issue that wealth is based on population and for some real nations that doesn't match their industrial potential so they end up with huge wealth reserves. In the past I have tried to solve that by having lower starting wealth per capita but that penalises the race throughout the whole game. I have also recently added a wealth reserve limit, although I am not completely happy with that either. Therefore I have been considering other options for wealth generation.

Currently, I am wondering whether to link wealth to actual workers. In effect, that means if someone is employed in a shipyard or factory or mine, etc., they generate taxes. If there are no installations in which to work, they don't generate taxes or they generate a small amount (maybe 10% normal). Agricultural and Services would not generate taxes.

The standard wealth per million workers would be much higher than the current wealth per million population (maybe 100 instead of 20). Within that overall concept, certain types of worker might generate more or less than the standard. Conventional factories perhaps generate 50% normal while financial centres generate 200% of normal (or maybe 33% and 300%). New colonies would still have an advantage as they have higher manufacturing centres. In fact, if inactive manufacturing sector workers still generate a small amount on the assumption they are working in a non-visible industry, then moving population to a new colony with a larger manufacturing will generate additional tax as well as additional growth.

This concept has a few advantages over the current method:
1) High population, low industry nations are now easy to handle as most of the population would generate nothing or minimal wealth, so there is no need to penalise wealth generation
2) As a nation industrialises, its wealth generation capability grows, which reflects historical trends.
3) The wealth reserve cap could be removed.
4) Financial centres become much more useful as they are relative to a much smaller base and would become an important element in terms of managing the economy.
5) Different industries have different tax vs build ratios. For example, factories are base 10 BP (10 wealth cost) per year while their workers only generate 5 tax. Mines and refineries also generate 5 tax but don't cost anything to run. Ground Force Construction Centres generate 200 BP but only 25 tax, so they are expensive to run.
6) As more factories, shipyards, scientists, refinery workers, etc, means more base money, wealth generation tech becomes more of a direct balance to production tech. For example, If you build a research facility and there are available workers, you gain 100 (exact number TBD) wealth points. The research facility generates 200 RP per year, which is 200 wealth cost, so you need to find the extra 100 wealth somewhere else. This could be mines/refineries, financial centres, civilian trade/mining, wealth technology. If you increase research tech without increasing wealth tech, you start to widen the gap. In fact, I would probably increase wealth generation from civs to make it more important to protect them from commerce raiding. BTW in C# Aurora, I haven't added the Subsidise option for civilians and I will probably leave it that way.

On the other hand, am I making wealth generation too easy? Effectively, building industry also builds a portion of wealth, even if that industry isn't actively being used.

Anyway - thinking out loud so comments welcome.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: misanthropope on January 27, 2019, 01:27:34 PM
america hasn't transitioned from an industrial economy to a services-based one because someone felt bad about making too much money.  just sayin'
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Father Tim on January 27, 2019, 01:41:00 PM
I vastly prefer this version to what you were proposing before.  As someone who almost exclusively plays Conventional starts in a random star system (thus neatly avoiding the civilian Earth-Luna money run), my usual experience is a build-up of a massive wealth stockpile while I am converting Conventional Industry to TNE tech, followed by a huge crash deep into debt as my new industry vastly overwhelms the tax base, followed by a slow climb out of the hole as I build financial centres and research increased wealth generation.

I always build imperial freighters and colony ships, and use them to build my empire.  More than half my games do not feature a second colony within the home system.  As a result, civilians are slow to get started and produce little wealth.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Scandinavian on January 27, 2019, 02:22:45 PM
It'd work.

But I think a more fundamental question is what wealth is supposed to represent. It can't be money, because government budgets do not work in any way even close to what Aurora is modeling. It is also a poor fit for a simulation of private industry, because private industrial capacity can't really be "saved up" - having a factory be idle and a laborer unemployed today does not enable it to produce double tomorrow. It could sort of work as a foreign currency reserve, but who would be the foreign entity (at least pre-NPR contact), and why would your own population necessarily generate FX inflows?

If we want to simulate the fact that the civilian sector objects to having its production directed toward the war effort, a more sensible simulation would be to have the current generation system, but simply set the "savings" cap to zero, with the "debt" (and resulting efficiency penalty) representing a push to have your civilian industrial base provide output beyond what it can sustainably support, and building up a maintenance/downtime backlog that must eventually be resolved. More sophistication could be added to this, including adding a "demand shortfall" cost that increases every production cycle you underutilize your civilian industry, and decreases every production cycle you are in "debt," to represent the fact that your cannot simply go from a 100 % civilian economy to a total war footing overnight.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Steve Walmsley on January 27, 2019, 02:24:14 PM
I have been digging deeper into this idea and found a few interesting things as a result. This is on the assumption that 1m workers = 100 tax wealth (which is probably low but useful for comparison).
So in summary, I think Maintenance Facilities (MF), GFCC and Shipyards are probably unbalanced in terms of workers vs production, regardless of what I do with wealth. With regard to MF, I am building more than I expected anyway for the maintenance capacity and I would like to keep the size the same as factories, so I think reducing the MSP production is the way to go.

For GFCC and shipyards, I need to go the other way and increase the number of workers. GFCC are the same size and cost as research facilities and ground units are now a key part of the game, so I am going to change the worker requirement to 1m, the same as research facilities.

The shipyards in my game have a capacity of 130k naval and 523K commercial and have been expanded a lot since the game began. They require 28m workers. Construction factories, mines and research facilities each require 40m and no more of them have been built since game start. Given the importance of shipyards, the manning requirements are too low and they are too efficient. I will increase the population requirement and make it linear, based on capacity, rather than 1m + capacity.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Steve Walmsley on January 27, 2019, 02:34:05 PM
It'd work.
But I think a more fundamental question is what wealth is supposed to represent.

It is supposed to represent the ability of a population to sustain high industrial output beyond the requirements of sufficient raw materials. Many countries suffer financial crisis post-war (even the winners) because they produced beyond their ability to pay for it. In Aurora, consideration of wealth is intended to give players a meaningful decision on where to focus their efforts. Otherwise, you would just produce at 100% with everything while minerals lasted with no potential downside. It definitely has a lot of limitations but I am trying to find a balance between providing meaningful decisions and having complex economics models. While it could be more realistic, there is a point where realism isn't adding to game play.

The economic model has several straightforward elements, including production capacity, population capacity, mining capacity, transport capacity, availability of raw materials, fuel production, maintenance, and wealth. Balancing those effectively is the economic model for the game. In this instance, I am trying to correct some of the current issues with balancing the wealth element.

EDIT: I should also have mentioned that wealth is also part of the effort to make a civilian shipping sector relevant. The original idea was that an Empire should have to protect its civilian shipping from hostile forces or face a penalty to its economy. The intention was that the loss of wealth and transport capacity from civilian shipping would be that penalty. For that to be true, the wealth from the civilian shipping has to be meaningful. I am not sure that is true at the moment though so I may need to up the income from that source.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Scandinavian on January 27, 2019, 02:56:52 PM
I'm not convinced that there exists economic constraints on sustained high industrial output beyond the provision of raw materials, capital, and labor.

The kind of crisis you refer to is very rare, and on those occasions where it does happen it is usually is either a crisis of a country that believes it won the war that in fact by any objective measure it lost (e.g. UK after WWI), or a political crisis in which traditional elites attempt to reimpose a pre-war status quo ante on their domestic political system that the war has rendered fundamentally untenable (the UK after WWI again provides the classic example with Churchill's attempts to re-fix bullion prices at pre-war levels). In either case less an economic crisis sensu strictu than a political crisis.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Zincat on January 27, 2019, 03:01:02 PM
I rather like the concept because it seems to me that it smoothes out the income/expenses balance. Since most buildings give back at least some of their own operation costs in wealth generation, this would reduce the problem of having too many buildings/ ships in construction for the wealth you can produce, as it often happens now.

And if you see that your wealth balance is starting to go in the red, you can simply increase the production of wealth generation buildings, be they mines, refineries or financial centers (which should really have 300% tax income, as that is their only output).

I think this new system will make wealth generation more a long term and meaningful choice, rather than the too little-too much we have now. And it would avoid a wealth reserve cap, which in my opinion makes zero sense. At the same time it makes perfect sense to me that idle population does not generate wealth for the "nation".

Of course the numbers probably need to be fine-tuned and such, but that's normal. I approve very much of this proposal in general :)
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Desdinova on January 27, 2019, 03:17:04 PM
Factories and mines in Aurora seem to represent 100% of a race's industrial output, but it all goes to the state, which seems like it represents an extreme command economy that doesn't exist in real life. Maybe not even in Aurora, as a civilian economy certainly does exist in-game.

My suggestion is to separate industrial capacity into civilian and government sectors. My idea is that each colony has an 'industrial capacity' rating that grows as a function of population and technology. The player sets an 'industrial utilization' percentage that sets what percentage of that industrial output is used for government construction (which doesn't generate wealth at all), and which percentage goes to wealth generation.

Replace construction factories with "nano-fabricators" or other super-science buildings that are locked behind technology, output 100% of their capacity to state projects, but cost wealth to operate.

My other suggestion is making supplies a constructable quantity and make them more expensive. This would allow you to simulate wartime industrial mobilization: during peacetime, the 'industrial utilization' fraction could be set low enough to cover normal building construction, whereas, during wartime, you increase it to meet the increased demand for supplies. Maybe increasing utilization contributes to industrial growth, as well, due to government subsidies, simulating the rapid war-time industrial build up. Maybe this bonus falls off during periods of extended low utilization.

This also solves the problem of having idling factories during resource shortages. Decreasing the 'industrial utilization' would represent them being converted to producing consumer goods.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Steve Walmsley on January 27, 2019, 04:01:14 PM
Factories and mines in Aurora seem to represent 100% of a race's industrial output, but it all goes to the state, which seems like it represents an extreme command economy that doesn't exist in real life. Maybe not even in Aurora, as a civilian economy certainly does exist in-game.

My suggestion is to separate industrial capacity into civilian and government sectors. My idea is that each colony has an 'industrial capacity' rating that grows as a function of population and technology. The player sets an 'industrial utilization' percentage that sets what percentage of that industrial output is used for government construction (which doesn't generate wealth at all), and which percentage goes to wealth generation.

Replace construction factories with "nano-fabricators" or other super-science buildings that are locked behind technology, output 100% of their capacity to state projects, but cost wealth to operate.

My other suggestion is making supplies a constructable quantity and make them more expensive. This would allow you to simulate wartime industrial mobilization: during peacetime, the 'industrial utilization' fraction could be set low enough to cover normal building construction, whereas, during wartime, you increase it to meet the increased demand for supplies. Maybe increasing utilization contributes to industrial growth, as well, due to government subsidies, simulating the rapid war-time industrial build up. Maybe this bonus falls off during periods of extended low utilization.

This also solves the problem of having idling factories during resource shortages. Decreasing the 'industrial utilization' would represent them being converted to producing consumer goods.

The economic model isn't intended to simulate a real-world economy, but rather to give players meaningful decisions in how they prioritise available capacity, production and resources to achieve their objectives. Besides, having studied economics myself at sixth-form (in England, this is between high school and university) my experience is that ten economists will give you eleven different models for how the economy actually functions :)  Most of the Aurora 'economic model' functions well in terms of creating those meaningful player decisions, but the current implementation of wealth doesn't work well in certain situations. I want to try to fix that without any major impact on the rest of the 'economy'.

The civilian economy is mainly abstracted away because including a more detailed model would hinder performance and would not add to game play (in terms of adding meaningful player decisions).
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Hazard on January 27, 2019, 04:08:06 PM
Well, my thoughts are this.

Wealth is not money, currency, debt or even economical activity. Rather, it's the cumulative non-TN materials available to the empire's government through taxation of its population. There are limits to how much a government can extract from its population before the population starts to suffer the consequences of such. There are indications for example that excessive taxation in the later medieval era impacted sanitation and health care infrastructure and worsened various epidemics.

The reason why TN structures produce wealth/taxation is due to taxation of the economical activity, and in the case of refineries and mines, 'spillover' of standard baryonic matter from mining and extraction being sold, not too unlike how Terraforming Facilities can dump literal megatons of materials into a planetary gravity well through an aetheric portal. Financial Centers then are not so much areas of great banking activity and stock exchanges, but areas that extract and process the body's material wealth, quite possibly through a tap like TFs.


This can result in a different calculation of the wealth production: Between 0% and 100% of the GDP of the empire stored in the coffers, the empire is building wealth at the maximum sustainable rate. Above 100% the wealth building decreases, at a rate of (2-(%of GDP stored/100)), effectively storing no more net wealth at 200% of wealth stored. Should the empire go into debt it faces a production speed malus same as in VB6 but receives the same wealth production. It could also press the 'Wartime Rationing' button on the wealth screen, which instantly sets its wealth based production malus to 0 but causes unrest to rise on its colonies depending on how deep it's in debt. Should it produce enough wealth to end up with positive wealth, the measure fades without consequences, the rationing now having passed. Should it end up with 100% of GDP in debt however, the economy collapses, it's hit immediately with the full wealth penalty to production and it suffers a 20% wealth production malus until its wealth is positive again. Yes, that's pretty devastating.


Given the issues with civilian shipping being very exploitable for wealth generation, I would offer that instead of a flat per system fee payment for civilian shipping it's a calculation of ((weight of cargo in tons or passenger count) * (Engine Power/Fuel Efficiency technology modifier of the engine) * Distance in kilometers + (number of systems traveled))*(modifier to prevent silly numbers) for payment, done at time of arrival for calculations. Differences due to shifting orbital positions should average out over time. This fee is then taxed, generating wealth for the empire.

Yes, I'm aware that dividing by the Fuel Efficiency technology effectively turns it into a multiplier.


I will note that if you link facility wealth production to its primary resource production rate you can largely do away with the Expand the Civilian Economy technology line, or translate it into a tech line affecting Financial Centers only. I'd also consider allowing the Agriculture and Environment Sector as well as the Service Sector to produce wealth, if not at the same rate as the Manufacturing Sector jobs. One of the reasons wealth production tends to escalate massively for Conventional starts in VB6 is that there is no population cap in VB6, even though population growth eventually slows down it never stops. This is especially early on an issue, when your production rates are not so large you can out build your growing population even if you were to produce nothing but construction factories and the mines to fuel those factories. C# however does have a maximum planetary population. This makes large planetary populations doing nothing much less exploitable as a source of wealth.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: King-Salomon on January 27, 2019, 04:09:18 PM
What has me thinking is, that while your ideas are logical for the installation : wealth relation I am a little bit concerned about the high wealth costs with the new ground-unit system...

Ground units are rather expensive in the new system.. or rather.. you are needing a lot of them to work so they will be expensive in summ... hmm...

you have the data from your testgames how big the expenses are for you and the NPR's ... will your new idea still work with the numbers?

---

I am with you that the civilian sector should have a big impact on wealth creation but.. hmm...

it would change the game drastical as only colonys with industrial base would be useful - no more pure population/wealth planets.. hmm... as there are now a lot more boyds which can (and would be) coloniced I think it would be a waste to reduce their usefulness for the player (or the AI) as "wealth-creation" /why colonice a 50.000 max body if it does not bring wealth) .. hmm...
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Desdinova on January 27, 2019, 04:33:06 PM
Factories and mines in Aurora seem to represent 100% of a race's industrial output, but it all goes to the state, which seems like it represents an extreme command economy that doesn't exist in real life. Maybe not even in Aurora, as a civilian economy certainly does exist in-game.

My suggestion is to separate industrial capacity into civilian and government sectors. My idea is that each colony has an 'industrial capacity' rating that grows as a function of population and technology. The player sets an 'industrial utilization' percentage that sets what percentage of that industrial output is used for government construction (which doesn't generate wealth at all), and which percentage goes to wealth generation.

Replace construction factories with "nano-fabricators" or other super-science buildings that are locked behind technology, output 100% of their capacity to state projects, but cost wealth to operate.

My other suggestion is making supplies a constructable quantity and make them more expensive. This would allow you to simulate wartime industrial mobilization: during peacetime, the 'industrial utilization' fraction could be set low enough to cover normal building construction, whereas, during wartime, you increase it to meet the increased demand for supplies. Maybe increasing utilization contributes to industrial growth, as well, due to government subsidies, simulating the rapid war-time industrial build up. Maybe this bonus falls off during periods of extended low utilization.

This also solves the problem of having idling factories during resource shortages. Decreasing the 'industrial utilization' would represent them being converted to producing consumer goods.

The economic model isn't intended to simulate a real-world economy, but rather to give players meaningful decisions in how they prioritise available capacity, production and resources to achieve their objectives. Besides, having studied economics myself at sixth-form (in England, this is between high school and university) my experience is that ten economists will give you eleven different models for how the economy actually functions :)  Most of the Aurora 'economic model' functions well in terms of creating those meaningful player decisions, but the current implementation of wealth doesn't work well in certain situations. I want to try to fix that without any major impact on the rest of the 'economy'.

The civilian economy is mainly abstracted away because including a more detailed model would hinder performance and would not add to game play (in terms of adding meaningful player decisions).

Maybe an easy compromise would be to make wealth constructable? Have a "consumer goods" construction task that directly generates wealth.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: the obelisk on January 27, 2019, 04:37:04 PM
The civilian economy is mainly abstracted away because including a more detailed model would hinder performance and would not add to game play (in terms of adding meaningful player decisions).
I feel like a more developed civilian economy could help give trade a better role in wealth generation, and could be used to provide interesting decisions regarding TN minerals and civilian mining operations.  If TN minerals are treated as a trade good generated by civilian mining complexes, and are necessary for the construction of civilian TN facilities and ships, I believe that this could make the decision of whether or not to buy TN minerals from civilian mines more interesting, as allowing the TN minerals to enter the civilian economy would no longer simply generate X wealth per time increment, but rather support the development of a more robust civilian economy which is in turn more capable of generating wealth further down the line.

A more robust civilian economy could also offer the player options in regards to state involvement in the economy.  As it is now, the economy of all empires are primarily controlled by the state, as essentially all productive facilities are state owned.  A developed model for a civilian economy could allow the player the ability to use privately owned facilities instead, which could offer their own advantages and disadvantages.

Additionally this could remove the need for financial centers, which in my opinion are counterproductive to the desire for player choice, as they are very often the obvious answer to the problem of needing more wealth.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Bremen on January 27, 2019, 05:48:11 PM
I think linking it to employees is going to be weird, and not accomplish the intended purpose of making populous but poorly industrialized countries poor.

Consider, a nation with few factories will produce less money, but they'll also use less money, in a rate directly proportional to how much less they generate. The only real effect from the change would be that you need a certain ratio of wealth producing buildings (financial centers, and to a lesser extend mines/maintenance facilities or factories/shipyards/research labs not being used at the time) to wealth consuming ones, and that ratio stays the same whether you have a thousand or a million buildings.

You'd get the same effect from just starting poorer nations with less conventional industry/TNE factories, and they'll grow out of it at the same rate.

Edit: I guess the concern here is more about a nation with lots of unemployed populations sitting around rapidly reaching the wealth cap. If that's the concern to be addressed, though, I'd suggest making financial centers (and maybe conventional industry) the only thing that produces wealth - having shipyards produce 1/5th the wealth they consume or similar will just make things confusing.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Steve Walmsley on January 27, 2019, 06:35:12 PM
I think linking it to employees is going to be weird, and not accomplish the intended purpose of making populous but poorly industrialized countries poor.

Consider, a nation with few factories will produce less money, but they'll also use less money, in a rate directly proportional to how much less they generate. The only real effect from the change would be that you need a certain ratio of wealth producing buildings (financial centers, and to a lesser extend mines/maintenance facilities or factories/shipyards/research labs not being used at the time) to wealth consuming ones, and that ratio stays the same whether you have a thousand or a million buildings.

Yes, in general that is true, although given the various research lines for different production types the ratio is going to change a lot. The main point through was to break the link between wealth and total population without making all population equal. In many countries, the poor agricultural areas produce less wealth than the industrialised areas.

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You'd get the same effect from just starting poorer nations with less conventional industry/TNE factories, and they'll grow out of it at the same rate.

No, because the excess population generates wealth.

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Edit: I guess the concern here is more about a nation with lots of unemployed populations sitting around rapidly reaching the wealth cap. If that's the concern to be addressed, though, I'd suggest making financial centers (and maybe conventional industry) the only thing that produces wealth - having shipyards produce 1/5th the wealth they consume or similar will just make things confusing.

Yes, that is the general concern. Shipyards wouldn't produce 1/5th of their consumed wealth (or whatever the number was) because the amount they consume is based on SY build rates and the actual ship they build or the upgrade they choose, which will build at different rates depending on size, while the tax revenue for the workers is just based on how many SY workers there are. The latter is not linked to the former.

The idea of financial centres being the only wealth generator is an interesting suggestion (apart from civs I assume). That might be a simpler option, although that takes away part of the reason to create new colonies. An option might be a combination of a much smaller amount for population, plus a large amount per financial centre (and a smaller amount for conventional industry), plus the income from civilian shipping lines and mining complexes.

However, I do like the idea of industrialisation itself creating wealth, which avoids drastic changes in income vs expenditure, but still requires a balanced approach and decisions regarding spending, especially when shipyards (for example) require far more wealth than their workers generate in taxes. Even in that scenario, financial centres would be important. This would allow a starting nation with a high population but limited industry to grow sensibly over time without huge wealth swings, but with an advantage over a country with similar industry but less population. I don't think this is confusing to the player because the key factor is how many workers there are, not what industry they are working in (with the exception of financial centres).
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Bremen on January 27, 2019, 07:53:43 PM
To be honest, wealth has kind of always been in an odd spot in Aurora since it's a concept most applicable to a free market economy (where the government would be paying privately owned factories to build tanks/ships/etc) but Aurora works more similarly to a command economy (where the government itself builds the factories). And to be fair, I like having the latter - I've played strategy games that tried to simulate a mostly autonomous civilian economy and it was always more frustrating than anything.

I don't see any easy alternatives, though, and removing it entirely would cause problems with civilian shipping and mining complexes.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: the obelisk on January 27, 2019, 09:51:38 PM
The issue with financial centers is that there is very little interesting choice involved with them.  A system where industrial facilities generate wealth to partially offset the cost of operating them still results in a situation where, in general, the economy is ignored until you're operating at a significant deficit, at which point you build financial centers.  Even if the economy is going to stay so heavily abstracted, it seems like there should be more than just throwing financial centers at deficits, and occasional researching an economics tech.  Maybe some kind of diminishing returns on wealth generated by people working in financial centers past a certain percentage of the planets population, while making trade and civilian mining operations more significant?

Also I think that jobs outside of the player controlled facilities should generally still be capable of producing some amount of wealth, especially since civilian mining colonies sending TN minerals to the civilian economy would imply the existence of a TN civilian economy.  Large population not necessarily translating into good economy could maybe be implemented by having the wealth production of civilian jobs be linked in some way to the amount of TN minerals going to the civilian economy.  The strength of the civilian economy could also be tied into the production of trade goods, to further reinforce that massive population =/= good economy automatically.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Father Tim on January 28, 2019, 03:04:36 AM
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Maybe some kind of diminishing returns on wealth generated by people working in financial centers past a certain percentage of the planets population, while making trade and civilian mining operations more significant?

. . .  Large population not necessarily translating into good economy could maybe be implemented by having the wealth production of civilian jobs be linked in some way to the amount of TN minerals going to the civilian economy.

I kinda hate this idea.  If I plunk a colony on a gas giant's moon (that has no TNE minerals) because it's a convenient place for a fuel dump, I don't want to have to ship in factories and minerals just to have the local population generate money.  I'd say 'Financial Colonies' are quite common in my games, when I want populations on a world with no (or, very few) Trans-Newtonian Elements.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Hazard on January 28, 2019, 04:23:05 AM
Also, just because TN materials allow for effective interplanetary/stellar transport and combat that doesn't mean that the entire civilian economy runs on TN materials. If anything, the fact that planets provide various non-TN trade goods in large numbers would indicate to me that non-TN materials are still a key component of the civilian economy. And why wouldn't it? Just because you can create a TN material based anti gravity device that doesn't mean you need one for your 3 story suburban home, and such a thing is expensive.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: alex_brunius on January 28, 2019, 04:33:30 AM
Maybe one way to model very "poor" countries or pre-TN starts would be to introduce base civilian wealth technology that needs to be unlocked "before" the research game even starts so to speak.

Pretty much like a mirror to "Expand Civilian Economy", but these techs are by default all unlocked already by any TN start.

Something with final effects being about:
- Agricultural Age Economy = 10% Wealth Generation & 85% workforce added to "Agriculture and Environmental" category
- Pre-Industrial Age Economy = 20% Wealth Generation & 60% workforce added to "Agriculture and Environmental" category
- Industrial Age Economy = 30% Wealth Generation & 40% workforce added to "Agriculture and Environmental" category
- Oil Age Economy = 50% Wealth Generation & 20% workforce added to "Agriculture and Environmental" category
- Nuclear Age Economy = 60% Wealth Generation & 5% workforce added to "Agriculture and Environmental" category
- Information Age Economy = 80% Wealth Generation
- Weak AI Age Economy = 100% Wealth Generation

The main point of these would be that you can always "catch up" to the same baseline eventually, but that it takes time.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Rabid_Cog on January 28, 2019, 04:51:28 AM
I disagree that Services and Agriculture do not produce taxes. On the contrary, I feel they should be the bulk of your wealth income, with employed workers on average having higher costs than income. The only real exception is the Financial Center, which is functionally just the government creating a space where civilian industry can happen at a highly intensive level and be directly managed. Like a parastatal. It also functions as a workaround for smaller populations to still produce a goodly amount of wealth. Unemployed people should give nothing though (or even cost you something).

This creates a situation where high population worlds are valuable because they can economically employ such a large percentage of the population through Agriculture and Services, but low population worlds are still viable through the use of financial centres.

I like the Wealth Cap. You CAN "save up" economic capacity by assembling and storing intermediate products, performing maintenance, increasing training, having more public holidays, etc to some extent. War fatigue is a thing and a healthy, happy population is more resistant. There is a limit, however, so I would say 100% of bruto income is a fine limit. That allows you to, in effect, have your economy produce at 200% for a single year with no ill effect, provided you had saved up to the maximum. It falls apart a bit when you consider that also means you can have your economy produce at 1300% for a single month with no ill effect, but I figure for the sake of simplicity that is okay.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: TMaekler on January 28, 2019, 05:32:10 AM
In general I think your planned changes could work, in that it simulates how much economic power a nation needs to be able to project military power. You can be perfectly fine as a smaller nation with two or three battle groups and have no (or little) financial centers to keep your society running.
On the other hand, if you want to be a US-type superpower, you need an economic backup and therefore have to build financial centers to do so. Financial centers are then bascially an abstraction of economic power.

Although I would keep an upper wealth limit for in that if you are rich like crazy and don't spend it on your nation, people can get angry at you. So stockpiling wealth should have a penalty to it.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Graham on January 28, 2019, 08:20:05 AM
I personally don't really like the idea of making non government employees useless. While it fixes the issue of a non TN China having ridiculous wealth generation I think it would negatively impact civilian wealth generation colonies in the later game.

My preferred solution would be to add a industrialisation or some such factor to each colony. This would be between 0.1 and 1, and would be a direct multiplier of wealth and trade goods generated by population outside government buildings. This would naturally tick up some rate, dependant upon the percentage of TN industry to population, and buffed by the amount of CMCs in system.
There should probably also be an option to build civilian development projects or some such in government factories to boost it faster.

You could start with a China with low industrialisation and wealth generation, but which can slowly catch up. But also you can have new colonies which might start at say 0.6, and then you have incentives to help them grow economically.

I think this would fix most issues with a fairly simple and intuitive system.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: the obelisk on January 28, 2019, 08:29:02 AM
I kinda hate this idea.  If I plunk a colony on a gas giant's moon (that has no TNE minerals) because it's a convenient place for a fuel dump, I don't want to have to ship in factories and minerals just to have the local population generate money.  I'd say 'Financial Colonies' are quite common in my games, when I want populations on a world with no (or, very few) Trans-Newtonian Elements.
The transport of TN minerals in the civilian economy could be abstracted.  As long as you've got civilian mines somewhere, the minerals they're sending to the civilian economy could be spread throughout your empire, proportional to the populations at your various colonies, and maybe weighted in favor of the populated colonies in the same systems as the mines.

Also, just because TN materials allow for effective interplanetary/stellar transport and combat that doesn't mean that the entire civilian economy runs on TN materials. If anything, the fact that planets provide various non-TN trade goods in large numbers would indicate to me that non-TN materials are still a key component of the civilian economy. And why wouldn't it? Just because you can create a TN material based anti gravity device that doesn't mean you need one for your 3 story suburban home, and such a thing is expensive.
By civilian TN economy, I mean civilian owned facilities using TN materials, in the same way the facilities the player can create require TN minerals to create, and are more effective than conventional industry.  It wouldn't be that the civilian economy is only producing TN-based products, but that it's using TN materials to make more of whatever it was already making, as well as to improve civilian infrastructure, like transportation.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Steve Walmsley on January 28, 2019, 09:34:23 AM
I personally don't really like the idea of making non government employees useless. While it fixes the issue of a non TN China having ridiculous wealth generation I think it would negatively impact civilian wealth generation colonies in the later game.

They aren't useless. Just outside the scope of the decisions in the game. For example, the Aurora 'government' doesn't spend anything on health, education, welfare, etc. which are the majority of a normal government's spend. It could be argued that the tax raised in the service sector is handling all that hidden expenditure and as the service sector grows in relation to population, the portion of tax going toward those areas increases too (as more developed economies always seem to end up spending more on welfare, etc.).

The tax raised from the manufacturing population is the tax dedicated to government expansion in the military-industrial complex.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Hazard on January 28, 2019, 10:11:55 AM
1) That's generally not how spending of taxed moneys is done (that's usually more of an 'pile all the money and dole it out everywhere necessary' thing).

2) The reason more developed economies spend more on welfare is because more developed economies have more resources to spend on welfare relative to less developed economies without making work unprofitable. There's a reason welfare spending wasn't really a big thing until industrialisation made the secondary and tertiary labour sectors vastly greater than the primary sector.

3) It's entirely conceivable that a government, sufficiently pressed, decides to scrap every job not necessary for its survival today, regardless of how it will impact tomorrow, because if they don't there won't be a tomorrow. Which would mean shifting all the proceeds from taxing the service sector towards the military industrial complex.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: zatomic on January 28, 2019, 10:17:26 AM
As a thought, maybe the bulk of wealth generation should come from the civilian sector population. Ignoring availability of TN minerals, production capacity (factories/shipyards) is limited by the population to run them and the wealth to fund them. When population is the limit, spreading out to colonies help as smaller population colonies have higher percentage in the industrial sector (along with the bonus of higher growth rate). Perhaps when wealth limited, the solution should be more concentration so more workers are in the civilian sector creating wealth.

Then financial centers, instead of generating wealth directly, would boost the wealth generation of the civilian sector. I'm not sure where to start on a formula but I would think 1 financial center should create more benefit the higher the population of the planet's civilian sector, but with diminishing returns as the number of financial centers increases relative to the boosted population. (Or just rely on their usage of manufacturing sector workers as an effective cap).

Then, maybe just include some number of financial centers as part of the starting facilities, so in the same way you would simulate a high pop country with low research capability by just giving them fewer labs, a deficit they can build their way out of, you could give your high pop/low wealth country fewer starting financial centers making their large starting civilian population produce less wealth, a deficit they can build out of.

This could also go with another suggestion I saw about a tech line for population percentage required for agriculture/life support. So your high pop but low tech, low wealth country could both build their way out (more research facilities and financial centers) and research their way out (lower agriculture percentage techs moving more population to the taxed civilian sector) which allows for them to catch up, but in competition with military research and construction.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Hazard on January 28, 2019, 11:02:59 AM
Or as another option, make wealth production completely dependent on Financial Centers, and let them produce wealth from a cap of (financial centers)*modifier million people in the Service sector. A sizable non-manufacturing/agriculture population would then be critical.

I mean, one of the issues with a wealth production based entirely on the manufacturing sector is that it basically means that the planetary population can be divided in 3 groups: 1) Needed for survival (agriculture and environment), 2) Needed for production and maintenance (manufacturing) and 3) Dead weight. With planetary populations eventually ending up 3/4th dead weight because you simply get nothing out of them.

Well, except perhaps the proceeds of shipping taxes.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Graham on January 28, 2019, 11:09:23 AM
I personally don't really like the idea of making non government employees useless. While it fixes the issue of a non TN China having ridiculous wealth generation I think it would negatively impact civilian wealth generation colonies in the later game.

They aren't useless. Just outside the scope of the decisions in the game

This is what i mean in terms of useless. They provide no real game play effect. With respect, i see a major problem with your proposal.

In your proposed system, income comes from 2 sources. Government mines, refineries and financial centres, and civilian traders and mining complexes.
Realistically, no one is going to build more mines or refineries than they need just for a bit of wealth, and you have no real control over civilians aside from stopping them being shot down and establishing colonies. Therefore, the only real game choice when facing a lack of financing is build more financial centres. While there are some more nuanced options, it will basically always come down to that.

My proposal is instead that wealth generation continues to be completely from the private sector and Financial centres. In addition to my change earlier in the thread I would suggest re-examining the way population is assigned to jobs. In VB6 there are 4 populations. 1- Agriculture and environment 2- Service sector 3- Unemployed government  4 -Employed government.

I would suggest merging populations 2 and 3. The worker pool able to be drawn on would be every worker not in the critical agriculture and environment sector, which has to be fulfilled, and should probably be expanded slightly to all critical tasks. No one is just sat around doing nothing as in VB6, people either work privately or for the government. But as wealth (Which can be abstracted as the fulfillment of the populations needs) is generated only by the private sector and Financial centers, this forms the limit of the workers available to you.

If we look at the same scenario of being low on cash, we have some more options. We could as above build Financial centres, effectively nationalising parts of our commercial sector, increasing their efficiency. Or we could instead spend that production boosting the development of some of our colonies to increase the productivity of our civilian sector. Or we could shift some of our heavy industry to a less developed world, leaving more population free to work privately on our developed capital, giving us a net increase in productivity. And of course long term shipping people off world will be a short term loss, but the population growth will lead to eventual returns on that investment.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Titanian on January 28, 2019, 11:36:58 AM
To me, this new approach sounds a little strange. Why would a government make money by taxing the people it itself is actually employing? I would rather do it the other way around, that having lots of installations, whether they are actually used or not, incurs an upkeep. Which of course does not help with the problem at hand.

I guess the problem is more that starting out a bit behind in some single specific tech (in this case wealth tech) does not last long, because techs always double in cost for every level. Thus, techs you are behind in are relativly cheap and fast to research. So to keep Chinas wealth tech behind, they need to have a lower tech level in general, and less research labs so it stays that way, and thus less factories so that  they don't get new labs faster than the others. That would make them a clearly inferior opponent.

Another point is that all the productivity and wealth techs take effect immediatly. This allows to quickly research the levels you are behind in and put them to use. This is also especially apparent if e.g. a China with low wealth modifier gets conquered, and instantly the better wealth tech of the new owner of the population is in effect.
So instead of a global modifier, we maybe need this value to be a population dependant value, which can be raised by some kind of industrial project acting like some kind of infrastructure. Let's call it development points (dp). As an example: A population has 100 million inhabitants. The owners wealth tech is at max 20 dp/million of population. This population could thus use up to 2.000 dp if they were present, any more would be wasted. If only less than this limit were present, all dp could be used. Then, the owner earns wealth equal to the dp that could be utilized by the population as taxes. Producing dp could for example cost wealth only.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: CheaterEater on January 28, 2019, 11:46:15 AM
Wealth accumulation is separate from wealth generation. If infinite wealth accumulation is an issue, you should restrict it. Have wealth generated by multiplied by a factor of A*(wealth generated)/(wealth accumulated) with the desired scaling factor A. If you measure in years and set A=1, if you accumulate 5 years worth of wealth you're earning 1/5 as much. This incentivizes spending wealth, as a facility or ship you bought wouldn't count against your accumulated wealth, but does allow some storage in case of emergency.

I think most nations would have a hard time accumulating significant amounts of wealth kept "free." Either domestic politics will force it to be dispersed for domestic ends or the large amounts of free capital floating around will necessarily increase inefficiencies; in any case, the wealth will be "lost." One interesting option then is for financial centers to allow greater accumulation of wealth, perhaps as more liquid investments. It makes sense to boost your wealth storage as well as your wealth generation, and losing that storage (e.g. losing a planet with financial centers) would be more damaging.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Titanian on January 28, 2019, 11:56:51 AM
Or we could shift some of our heavy industry to a less developed world, leaving more population free to work privately on our developed capital, giving us a net increase in productivity.
For that to be possible, there needs to be some kind of development index for every population, which there currently is not. Otherwise it sounds like an interesting concept, especially id it encourages to move industry to colonies. Then the button to give colonies independence might actually produce functional races most of the time, not just planets without any industry and thus without any means to do anything ;).
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Bremen on January 28, 2019, 12:20:10 PM
To everyone talking about taxes coming from agricultural and service workers, while I agree that makes the most sense, it also completely fails at the main goal of keeping a nation with a large population but little in the way of industry (think China or India in most of Steve's games) from producing massive amounts of wealth.

In the past we had racial wealth multipliers to address this, but I gather Steve wants something that nations can organically grow out of as they industrialize, which I think is a definite improvement.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Graham on January 28, 2019, 12:53:22 PM
Or we could shift some of our heavy industry to a less developed world, leaving more population free to work privately on our developed capital, giving us a net increase in productivity.
For that to be possible, there needs to be some kind of development index for every population, which there currently is not. Otherwise it sounds like an interesting concept, especially id it encourages to move industry to colonies. Then the button to give colonies independence might actually produce functional races most of the time, not just planets without any industry and thus without any means to do anything ;).

See my first post in this thread.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Garfunkel on January 28, 2019, 01:41:14 PM
As long as the more mundane civilian aspects of government spending are abstracted away, it's absolutely fine that the Agricultural and Service workers provide no tax, and that some "government"-workers provide very little. Because that way you have sources of both income and expenditure abstracted away, so it sort of balances itself out.

Many of these suggestions are intriguing, but they run into the issue that the problem of economy modelling is just pushed back to another step - and there's no point to completely rework the economic system of Aurora at this stage if we actually want to get to playing it at some point :D

I like the sound of the changes and testing will show if they are getting us in the right direction. I would like to keep a wealth cap of some sort, because even with the changes, it can be possible with a conventional Earth start to accumulate massive hoard of wealth - plus robbing NPRs shouldn't give you near-unlimited funds for years.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: the obelisk on January 28, 2019, 02:34:51 PM
In your proposed system, income comes from 2 sources. Government mines, refineries and financial centres, and civilian traders and mining complexes.
Realistically, no one is going to build more mines or refineries than they need just for a bit of wealth, and you have no real control over civilians aside from stopping them being shot down and establishing colonies. Therefore, the only real game choice when facing a lack of financing is build more financial centres. While there are some more nuanced options, it will basically always come down to that.
I'm in agreement with this.  I think that if the goal is to have a greater number of interesting player decisions, giving the player more ways to influence the empire's economy/wealth generation is the way to go.

Something I don't think has been pointed out yet is that another source of wealth generation, civilian trade, is also significantly governed by population, since population has a very direct role in determining what trade goods are relevant to a particular colony, what the demand is, and if I'm not mistaken, how much is produced.  While less direct than taxing the population, this system as is continues to reinforce the large population = strong economy issue.  Giving players a way to interact with this, such as if the production and demand were influenced by the availability of TN minerals in the civilian economy relative to the population (maybe giving TN minerals produced in the same system extra weight) could lead to more interesting game play and help unify the economic elements of Aurora.

To everyone talking about taxes coming from agricultural and service workers, while I agree that makes the most sense, it also completely fails at the main goal of keeping a nation with a large population but little in the way of industry (think China or India in most of Steve's games) from producing massive amounts of wealth.
They could simply generate smaller amounts.

In the past we had racial wealth multipliers to address this, but I gather Steve wants something that nations can organically grow out of as they industrialize, which I think is a definite improvement.
I don't think building more financial sectors constitutes as organic growth.  It would be more interesting if there were factors other than research and a specific type of building that determine to what extent the population generates wealth.

As long as the more mundane civilian aspects of government spending are abstracted away, it's absolutely fine that the Agricultural and Service workers provide no tax, and that some "government"-workers provide very little. Because that way you have sources of both income and expenditure abstracted away, so it sort of balances itself out.
It largely limits you from creating a colony to generate wealth, since you'd NEED to divert construction factories to the creation of financial centers for that colony.  The only advantage the new colony would have is a faster growing population resulting in a faster growing worker base.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Rabid_Cog on January 28, 2019, 03:35:09 PM
My vision of the tax income from Agricultural and Services sector would be that the income is low. As low as it is now, or perhaps even lower, or is instead just counterbalanced by all unemployed workers incurring a "welfare cost" that directly counteracts your income.

Financial Centers on the other hand represent what happens when siginificant capital investment is done to grow the economy beyond the base level. They have large employer requirements, but provide massive tax income multipliers to all its workers.

So a massive rural economy would have a large service/agriculture sector that provides a low level income, but without the industry to keep their large populace busy, they would have significant unemployment bringing their wealth down. Also no financial centers to compensate.

On the opposite end, you have a big industrialized economy that also has a large service/agriculture sector to provide a low level income. However, this time, they have very little unemployed population counteracting that income. Instead, all that population is economically active in producing things, which also costs wealth, but at least gives them something for it. To keep up, they are reliant on also having a bunch of financial centers that helps to keep their populace out of unemployment and gives quite a lot of tax income.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Father Tim on January 28, 2019, 04:22:50 PM
. . . If the goal is to have a greater number of interesting player decisions. . .

My goal is to not lose my Financial Colonies.  If Planet Sasketchewan has no TNE minerals, but room for six billion people, I don't want to be stuck with the "interesting decision" of either shippping in TNE by the megaton in order to get wealth from those six billion, or leaving Sasketchewan as a 'breeding hive' that produces nothing but people.  The 'breadbasket of the empire' deserves better than that.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Hazard on January 28, 2019, 04:47:10 PM
About the only useful thing of a planet with no TN industry if the general population produces no wealth is the population and the trade goods it craps out for the civilian lines to ship around.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: the obelisk on January 28, 2019, 06:01:18 PM
. . . If the goal is to have a greater number of interesting player decisions. . .

My goal is to not lose my Financial Colonies.  If Planet Sasketchewan has no TNE minerals, but room for six billion people, I don't want to be stuck with the "interesting decision" of either shippping in TNE by the megaton in order to get wealth from those six billion, or leaving Sasketchewan as a 'breeding hive' that produces nothing but people.  The 'breadbasket of the empire' deserves better than that.
If it weren't abstracted, I'd imagine the transportation of TN minerals in the civilian economy would be done by civilian ships, but if people don't want that, the entire transportation of TN minerals could be abstracted, with TN minerals entering the civilian economy from civilian mines simply automatically affecting your entire empire (and maybe affecting the colonies in the same system as the mine a bit more than the colonies outside the mine).
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Garfunkel on January 28, 2019, 08:17:24 PM
It largely limits you from creating a colony to generate wealth, since you'd NEED to divert construction factories to the creation of financial centers for that colony.  The only advantage the new colony would have is a faster growing population resulting in a faster growing worker base.
Only if you don't have shipping lines. You will still get tax revenue from colonists being shipped there and from there, as well as money from the trading goods. The overall income from such a colony would go down but it wouldn't become useless.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: MarcAFK on January 28, 2019, 11:44:24 PM
Like a few others I don't see any realistic reason why you should make income from the people working in factories making weapons and facilities for the government, that stuff costs money, and should be a drain on your economy.
I think whats needed is a more robust civilian sector that builds upon what already exists without a complete game changing overhaul as proposed.
Actual numbers would need to be tweaked and tested, but my proposal is that you should basically be balancing 2 types of economy, First is your wartime physical economy, building factories, ships, training people, moving stuff around etc.
This stuff is expensive and is the primary thing most people spend their time on none of this stuff should make you any money, but rather you trade money for its productive output.
The other half is the monetary economy, producing a robust civilian economy that can provide the liquidity for employing the vast amounts of people and resources needed to run production. This is commercial enterprises, right now only CMCs, fuel harvesters, civilian trade, and taxation. As of now CMCs and harvesters build up slowly, trade can take a long time to get flowing smoothly, but population can easily reach the point where hoarded wealth becomes irrelevant.
A wealth cap was suggested, I don't remember the specifics suggested, but it seems to me that people should be encouraged to balance the economy, right now theres a major crippling disincentive for reaching a deficit (which I believe should be heavily reduced) but theres no system encouraging not reaching a surplus. A wealth cap would do this since having extra wealth is just wasted, perhaps there could be a tax rate which could be set exchanging higher population growth or something for less or more wealth generation.
All population shouldn't produce tax income, the service industry should have the highest wealth output but it shouldn't automatically produce income. Rather than having a flat percentage of population is "service industry" anyone not employed by the factories etc should be considered unemployed and generate no wealth, your service industry which does pay taxes should slowly grow based on things like trade, morale (not having ground battles taking place on the planet etc) and so on, in any rate the service industries should never grow to a higher percentage than the number of people employed directly by the player, consider this the trickle down effect of the wealth from government jobs being spread around.
Then finally financial centers should help to raise the wealth cap, help increase the percentage of the service economy, increase trade, etc.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: King-Salomon on January 29, 2019, 03:01:45 AM
Thinking again, I would leave the wealth-changes (other than the cap and additional research you already did Steve) aside for the first version of C# ...

There are so many changes in C# that I don't think anybody can foresee how they will work together and what the effects will be - other than your testgames that is...

So I would wait till C# 1.0 is out and after 2-3 monthsof  feedback you (and all the people who are making suggestions) will have a really good feeling how much wealth is really needed through all different kind of gameplays and how much is generated in a lot of different gamestyles...

I am not saying it shouldn't be changed but I would plan the changes for the first update of C# - together with the inevitable balancing adjustments...

to change too many thinks altogether for the new version might result in some complications nobody is aware of at the moment...
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Graham on January 29, 2019, 04:35:52 AM
the service industries should never grow to a higher percentage than the number of people employed directly by the player, consider this the trickle down effect of the wealth from government jobs being spread around.

This would again remove the ability to make money from worlds with little government industry, and IMO doesn’t make a lot of sense.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: SerBeardian on January 29, 2019, 04:47:57 AM
I came up with this idea this morning but haven't had a chance to post it here until now.

Basically, the problem that we seem to be having is that ultimately, wealth comes from populations directly, and this is difficult to balance since there's not *really* much there to say whether the population itself is rich or poor or what. So, what if we tie wealth production from populations directly into a system that's already integrated with civilian shipping: trade goods.

This is how I see it:

Each planet has three sectors: Agriculture, Service, and Industry. More sectors are an option, but let's stick with just the three we already have.

As the Supreme Overlord, you draw employees from the pool of Industry, and the rest are employed in civilian workforce. (though you could potentially draw employees from any sector, depending on the building type)

Now, the ratio of Agri/Service/Industry (ASI) for each planet would depend on a few factors such as terrain (more arable farmland = more A), environment (no atmosphere= almost no A), but also on nearby economic factors such as the presence or absence of CMCs, other colony types in system, etc depending on how complex you want to go.

Government buildings could swing people towards ASI based on what they are as well: Lots of mines and factories on the planet? Why not work in the industrial sector for that sweet government paycheck?

Each pop individually would generate almost zero wealth. Tiny, teensy, miniscule wealth. I'm thinking like, 0.1 wealth per million. This represents taxes and income from things like land taxes, property taxes, etc.


Ok, so now we have the people doing things, how do we make money off that?


By having each pop in each sector produce certain trade goods based on that sector, modified by other factors.

Agri sector would produce agricultural trade goods, like food, fibers, lumber, etc.

Service sector would produce lux goods or "services".

Indu sector would produce various minerals and ores and heavy equipment.

Each sector would also CONSUME different amounts of each good per pop:

Agri consumes heavy machinery, as does Industrial, while both consume large amounts of services.


Basically, each sector produces goods that feed the others. And each point of demand fulfilled generates wealth for you to represent the taxes on that transaction. Drawing a huge amount of that population into government jobs of course reduces the output of your industrial sector, while not decreasing their demands (much, certain goods would remain - like food, others should decrease - like heavy industry.)


Steve has mentioned that he wants player choice to matter, which this fulfils since these would be *naturally generated*, versus the "pick 2-3 to make a surplus, deficiency the rest" that VB6 has. The player choices as to what buildings are put on that planet and others nearby, what the terrain is like, what the atmosphere is like, etc. all matter by influencing what goods and how much of each is produced. Even the choice of settling a planet you would otherwise ignore because it has the potential to produce trade goods you might be lacking.


Now, we also want to make civilian shipping important, so this system fits this perfectly.


Since no two planets would produce identical quantities or ratios of goods, there would inherently be deficiencies and surpluses. Civilian shipping would then take these surpluses and deliver them to where they can be consumed to generate more wealth. You don't need to tax the civ ships directly (though, of course, you would :P) because they would inherently generate more wealth for you by filling these demands.

To simulate the technological development of a colony, simply have a modifier tied to the planet and/or empire that modifies the supply/demand of each good on that planet, which would directly impact the wealth potential of the empire/colony without doing anything to the population itself.


This system is also friendly to how wealth would flow between two different empires:
Give each trade good a value. Whenever a Line delivers goods, they are paid from the coffers of the empire that owns the planet (dependent on, but separate from the wealth generated by the fulfillment itself). They then pay a portion of that payment to the empire that they belong to as taxes, and a portion to the empire that owns the colony as tariffs. For example sake, let's say 33% taxes and 33% tariffs. When it's within your own empire, you get 66% of the trade value as wealth as you own both the line and the tariff. If an alien transport delivers goods, you get 33% of the value as tariff, while they get 33% as the taxes. The shipping line gets 33% either way for their own use as revenue.


There is also a lot of potential for much more complex and in-depth systems to be included, or even added on later down the road.

Two additional factors that I call Trade Good Feedback.
The first would be to have the surplus/deficiency of a trade good affect the pressure on ASI ratios eg. too much food pushes people out of farming as opportunities for earnings drop.
The second is to have a deficiency of trade goods affect the productivity of sectors or even your economy eg. lack of food slows/stops/reverses population growth, while increasing the wealth earned from food delivered to that planet; certain goods could also affect morale.
I would not expect either of these, but the option is there and it should not be too much more difficult on top of the base system.

There is also an opportunity to have the oversupply/undersupply also affect the value of that trade good when delivered to that planet by increasing payment for goods in high demand.

Having the ability to manually set your races taxes and tariffs would open the potential to speed/slow Line growth, as well as to attract/repel external shipping, giving the opportunity for a trade war with your opponents or forging friendships through trade alliances with your allies. It would also give more impact on racial traits like xenophobia to have these affect the tariff rate.


I know it'd be a lot of work for Steve to do something like this system, but this has everything everyone seems to be asking for: it more closely resembles a real economy, it naturally generates wealth depending on the size and development of the colony, it has variations of colonies semi-independent of player action (influenced by, but not entirely controlled by), it involves civ shipping intimately, and it requires long-term and short-term choices from the players without requiring insane levels of micro (while also allowing as much micro as you want through installation balance). It also has options to expand upon the base system in interesting and complex ways (freaking TRADE WARS!).

I don't expect such a system, and obviously it would need to be fleshed out a lot more, and I know it could cause even more delays if Steve has to rebuild the entire economic system to implement this... but it would be so freaking sweet to have.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Steve Walmsley on January 29, 2019, 06:02:38 AM
Just to re-iterate, the goal is not to create a realistic economy model. It is to create a situation where a nation with a high population but comparatively small industrial base does not quickly accumulate massive wealth, or (even with a cap) simply generate so much wealth compared to industry that wealth is irrelevant to decision-making. In other words, for a multi-race Earth start, the United States and India should both be faced with decisions regarding wealth, even when the US has greater industry and India has much greater population. If the wealth-generation method doesn't meet that goal, then I won't be able to use it.

Under the model I suggested (with tweaking after test), this should be the case. The industrial workers provide a source of income through tax and it is assumed that service and agricultural effectively pay for themselves (greater service sector means greater welfare, health, education, etc.). Conventional factory workers would produce less wealth, probably 1/3rd normal, while financial centre workers would generate 3x normal to represent the government investment in wealth generation.

There would need to be balance between those industries who are moderate net wealth consumers (construction, research), those which are heavy net wealth consumers (shipbuilding, ground construction, maintenance), those which are moderate net wealth providers (mines, refineries) and those which are heavy net wealth providers (financial centres). Manufacturing efficiency would apply to income (so building more industry than workers doesn't help). Civilian mining and shipping would also be wealth providers and I would increase the amount of wealth generated by the latter source to add benefit to new colonies (more and larger colonies means greater trading opportunities). I could also look at having planets of certain types provide particularly valuable rare (new) trade goods that would boost wealth.

Finally, there is no industry shutdown option (so far) in C# Aurora and I am inclined to leave it that way, so making good use of available workers will be important.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Graham on January 29, 2019, 07:17:56 AM
I think it might be worth examining what you want wealth as a mechanic to achieve in terms of game play.

As you have said, it's current function is to limit the amount of activity a nation can do, forcing them to choose between prioritising different areas of their nation, and requiring investment to increase this capacity.

The problem I see is that there is already another mechanic in game that has almost the exact same purpose and effect, minerals. As such if you want these two mechanics to operate in parallel it's important to ensure that they are generated from significantly different sources, so as not to feel superfluous. In the proposed system however, the primary wealth generation mechanism is mines and Financial centres. Mines are the exact same production building as for minerals, and financial centres have very little mechanical game play behind them. As such wealth may end up feeling like it has no real purpose.

Obviously as trade good movements begin to make up a larger portion of income this problem will be negated to some degree but I think it's still worth considering.

I am not trying to be overly negative or patronising, so sorry if my post comes off that way. I just thought it might be useful to have an outside opinion on things. At the end of the day i will be happy with whatever we are given when C# is released, so thank you again for your work.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: sloanjh on January 29, 2019, 07:32:55 AM
Finally, there is no industry shutdown option (so far) in C# Aurora and I am inclined to leave it that way, so making good use of available workers will be important.

I'm a little confused by this: what can I do as a player besides building financial centers (or mines, with less effect) if I'm running a deficit?  If I can't stop production of e.g. research, how do I implement my choice to focus on e.g. construction in such a situation? 

John
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Steve Walmsley on January 29, 2019, 07:35:58 AM
Finally, there is no industry shutdown option (so far) in C# Aurora and I am inclined to leave it that way, so making good use of available workers will be important.

I'm a little confused by this: what can I do as a player besides building financial centers (or mines, with less effect) if I'm running a deficit?  If I can't stop production of e.g. research, how do I implement my choice to focus on e.g. construction in such a situation? 

John

You can stop research projects to save money. You can't shutdown research labs so they no longer need workers.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Steve Walmsley on January 29, 2019, 07:36:31 AM
I think it might be worth examining what you want wealth as a mechanic to achieve in terms of game play.

As you have said, it's current function is to limit the amount of activity a nation can do, forcing them to choose between prioritising different areas of their nation, and requiring investment to increase this capacity.

The problem I see is that there is already another mechanic in game that has almost the exact same purpose and effect, minerals. As such if you want these two mechanics to operate in parallel it's important to ensure that they are generated from significantly different sources, so as not to feel superfluous. In the proposed system however, the primary wealth generation mechanism is mines and Financial centres. Mines are the exact same production building as for minerals, and financial centres have very little mechanical game play behind them. As such wealth may end up feeling like it has no real purpose.

Obviously as trade good movements begin to make up a larger portion of income this problem will be negated to some degree but I think it's still worth considering.

I am not trying to be overly negative or patronising, so sorry if my post comes off that way. I just thought it might be useful to have an outside opinion on things. At the end of the day i will be happy with whatever we are given when C# is released, so thank you again for your work.

The difference is that mine workers produce a fixed amount of wealth while mines themselves provides very different amounts of minerals depending on the situation. Two nations with the same number of mines and the same wealth situation would be in very different positions in terms of mineral supplies.

Also, you will very likely need financial centres or trade (or some very good governors). The taxes from 'normal' workers will not be enough for normal production.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Bughunter on January 29, 2019, 07:47:09 AM
Finally, there is no industry shutdown option (so far) in C# Aurora and I am inclined to leave it that way, so making good use of available workers will be important.

Could lead to people "shutting down" factories by dumping them on the moon for a while until needed again.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Steve Walmsley on January 29, 2019, 08:01:32 AM
Finally, there is no industry shutdown option (so far) in C# Aurora and I am inclined to leave it that way, so making good use of available workers will be important.

Could lead to people "shutting down" factories by dumping them on the moon for a while until needed again.

It could do, although players can do that in VB6 too. Dumping is far less convenient and it would tie up freight capacity to do it. Players could also temporarily remove the factories in SM mode as well.

In Aurora it is easy to get around the 'spirit' of the rules when desired. It is up to individual players if they want to go down that route.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Iceranger on January 29, 2019, 10:34:19 AM
It looks to me that the new wealth model looks more like power than economy, depending on how much 'wealth' we can get from taxes on civs, which is largely out of player's control.

Based on current numbers:
Financial centers: power generator, generates 3x power per million workers
Refineries, mines: small power generator, generates 0.5x power per million workers

Factories, labs: small power consumers, consumes 0.5x power per million workers
Military stuff: large power consumers, consumes (7/8)x (?) power per million workers

To balance your book (without considering civ income, assuming the same worker requirement as in VB6):
1 financial center can support 6 factories, 1 mine can support 1 factories
(10/3) financial centers are needed to support 1 lab
about 26 financial centers are needed to support one 18kt military shipyard (based on the new shipyard worker model)

We may as well rename wealth to power, and then we can have more ways of generating it, rather than only have the choice of building financial centers or cancelling industry jobs.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Sleepymoon on January 29, 2019, 03:28:45 PM
I'd like to submit an idea; not all conventional industry is created equally.
If we take US industry as a baseline and compare it to a country like China which has about 5 times the industrial manpower but only produces 50% more than the US. (These aren't exact numbers.)
In this case, each Chinese CI only produces 30% of what each US CI produces so the Chinese would have a racial modifier of .3 applied to CI.
In addition, it may take more effort to convert inefficient Chinese industry to TN industry.
I think this would go a long way to resolving early game imbalances between highly developed nations with low population and less developed nations with high population.

Another idea is to add a wealth multiplier based on the average productivity of their industrial base.
It would go something like; (the number of CI*3*racial modifier + the number of TN industry*10)/(the number of CI + TN industry).
TN industry would be Construction Factories, Fighter Factories, Fuel Refineries, Mines, Ordinance Factories, and possibly Automated Mines. Other TN facilities may also count but I'm not sure how many Construction factories a shipyard should be worth.
This can be abstracted to non-government industry so that colonies can produce wealth without government intervention (insert rant about socialism.)
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: alex_brunius on January 29, 2019, 06:31:31 PM
Could lead to people "shutting down" factories by dumping them on the moon for a while until needed again.

If not using labs for research means they don't consume wealth wouldn't leaving factories unused also not consume wealth? In that case you can just shut down as many as you want by not giving them construction projects, and the same with shipyards.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: MarcAFK on January 29, 2019, 11:43:35 PM
I should hope so. Thats how I deal with mineral shortages so I suppose it should help for wealth.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Whitecold on January 30, 2019, 12:23:27 AM
Honestly the new proposal doesn't feel very neat. There seems to be too much overlap with mines already producing minerals, and it is not clear to me what wealth should represent.
Why do financial centers help with ship construction or research anyway?

A radical suggestion would be to make wealth not storable at all, but instead working as a cap on all activities of an empire, representing the amount of resources that can be diverted.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: chrislocke2000 on January 30, 2019, 02:30:27 AM
I think the proposed changes look pretty good although will need some decent play testing through different phases of the game.

Re mines, I think in the majority of my games I end up with nearly all of my mines converted to automated facilities in time due to my consistent bad luck in finding habitable planets with decent minerals so in this case I'm assuming you end up with no wealth contribution from the automated mines given the lack of people there.

Having more levers to improve wealth like a research tree on the output of financial centres would be good.

I'd like to understand how war reparations are going to work in the context of a wealth cap, at the moment I see getting the cash from another empire once you have grabbed their home world as being a very valid and clear driver to invade as a opposed to nuking them. That's going to be less interesting if I'm sat near the wealth cap and can expect most of the extra funds to just disappear.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Steve Walmsley on January 30, 2019, 04:39:10 AM
I think the proposed changes look pretty good although will need some decent play testing through different phases of the game.

Re mines, I think in the majority of my games I end up with nearly all of my mines converted to automated facilities in time due to my consistent bad luck in finding habitable planets with decent minerals so in this case I'm assuming you end up with no wealth contribution from the automated mines given the lack of people there.

Having more levers to improve wealth like a research tree on the output of financial centres would be good.

I'd like to understand how war reparations are going to work in the context of a wealth cap, at the moment I see getting the cash from another empire once you have grabbed their home world as being a very valid and clear driver to invade as a opposed to nuking them. That's going to be less interesting if I'm sat near the wealth cap and can expect most of the extra funds to just disappear.

If I made these changes, I would remove the wealth cap. The wealth cap was a band-aid on the excess wealth problem whereas this proposal is intended to fix the root cause.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Steve Walmsley on January 30, 2019, 04:57:14 AM
Honestly the new proposal doesn't feel very neat. There seems to be too much overlap with mines already producing minerals, and it is not clear to me what wealth should represent.
Why do financial centers help with ship construction or research anyway?

A radical suggestion would be to make wealth not storable at all, but instead working as a cap on all activities of an empire, representing the amount of resources that can be diverted.

Mines don't produce money and financial centres don't help construction. I've probably made this sound complex by trying to explain how different industries would affect the economy, when in reality the proposal is simple.

Wealth is generated by manufacturing workers, regardless of industry. All workers provide the same wealth benefit (probably 100 wealth per million workers as a base), regardless of whether their industry is currently building something. The single exception is that workers in conventional industry provide one third of the normal tax.

Each financial centre provides a wealth boost (TBD) on top of the tax income from its workers.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: MarcAFK on January 30, 2019, 06:44:59 AM
That sounds fine, though I still believe most population tax revenue should come from service industry so theres a direct opposition between 'factory workers' who produce stuff but cost money, and "service industry" which makes you nothing of value, but tax revenue.
Then other systems could be added to have more control over how much of your population ends up being employable or otherwise sit around being cash cows.
At the moment the only real control you have is dumping more people into high population worlds gives you the maximum service industry, or otherwise offloading people into smaller colonies you get a more productive workforce but lower service industry percentage, which at the moment has no downside its just more production for the cost of shuffling people around, but with my proposal it would lead to lower tax revenue.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Steve Walmsley on January 30, 2019, 07:00:46 AM
That sounds fine, though I still believe most population tax revenue should come from service industry so theres a direct opposition between 'factory workers' who produce stuff but cost money, and "service industry" which makes you nothing of value, but tax revenue.
Then other systems could be added to have more control over how much of your population ends up being employable or otherwise sit around being cash cows.
At the moment the only real control you have is dumping more people into high population worlds gives you the maximum service industry, or otherwise offloading people into smaller colonies you get a more productive workforce but lower service industry percentage, which at the moment has no downside its just more production for the cost of shuffling people around, but with my proposal it would lead to lower tax revenue.

The reason for it being the manufacturing sector and not the service sector is the "India Problem". Service is more realistic in real-world terms, but manufacturing is much better in game play terms.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: kks on January 30, 2019, 07:41:31 AM
I think Steve has made clear what he wants the new system to do. Especially from a gameplay perspective, this is imho a good solution to the current wealth-related problems.

The misunderstanding and arguments against probably mostly come from the difference somebody imagines by thing described as wealth and the system Steve would like to implement. I find it difficult to understand, that the players spending on military construction would increase the general "wealth" (seen as money/food for those hivemind races/...) of the players empire. The population working in these facilities does increase the gouverments capability in (primarily military) construction and power, but they have to been paid/cared for with the gouverments "wealth"(money/food/...).

Therefore, I think, that one could simply rename the system from wealth to something like military ressources or industrial/gouverment capacity. I am sadly very bad at finding suitable names, but others in this thread have proposed similiar thing, so I hope the general direction I mean is clear.
"gouverment ressources" would represent the sum of the capbility of an empire to construct and maintain space and military forces and their supporting logistics foundation (logistics, stateowned feighters, terraformers, ...). This would primarly be the population working in gouverment facilities. An empire needs qualified personel and mines to keep the factories and shipyards running, so mines and financial centres provide more "gouverment ressources" than they consume, while the factories need more "gouverment ressources" than they provide when they construct new things. If the CFs lay idle, they increase "gouverment ressources" by producing things needed for maintanence of facilites or something else.

This would imho neatly solve the issues some here have with the new "wealth" by simply renaming it to something more appropriate for the desired system.
If somebody thinks the name "financial centre" does not fit in this system, it could be renamed to something showing it generates "gouverment ressources". Maybe "specialist training centre" or "bureaucractic department".

The former "wealth" (money/food/...) needed to support the workers would be no longer needed and is abstractet away, as the population not available for (military) gouverment (means not available for the manufacturing sector) would pay the taxes, which can be assumed to be enough to "pay" the manufacturing pops. As such it is no longer needed. Maybe the service sector pop can provide a small amount of "gouverment ressources" representing private manufacturing, research, mining operations, or something similiar.

Here is the original post by Iceranger, which I wanted to support. He has calculated whats practically cunsumes produces these "gouverment ressources" more detailed:

It looks to me that the new wealth model looks more like power than economy, depending on how much 'wealth' we can get from taxes on civs, which is largely out of player's control.

Based on current numbers:
Financial centers: power generator, generates 3x power per million workers
Refineries, mines: small power generator, generates 0.5x power per million workers

Factories, labs: small power consumers, consumes 0.5x power per million workers
Military stuff: large power consumers, consumes (7/8)x (?) power per million workers

To balance your book (without considering civ income, assuming the same worker requirement as in VB6):
1 financial center can support 6 factories, 1 mine can support 1 factories
(10/3) financial centers are needed to support 1 lab
about 26 financial centers are needed to support one 18kt military shipyard (based on the new shipyard worker model)

We may as well rename wealth to power, and then we can have more ways of generating it, rather than only have the choice of building financial centers or cancelling industry jobs.

I do not know if this power was meant to represent electrical energy, or power in the sense of capacity, but maybe military or gouverment power could be a fitting name.
I hope somebody else can help with finding new, better fitting names than "gouverment ressources".

I also hope I could made clear what I ment, and would like to explain it some more, if not.

After this proposal I have only one questions left:
Do you intent to keep some racial modifiers for construction and "wealth" generation? So could we have empires, which need a much larger number of workers to have the same effect, maybe with a smaller impact on planetary population capacity per individual?

And as a long time lurker, I want to use these opportunity to say Thank you and congratulate on the game you are creating, Steve.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Hazard on January 30, 2019, 08:08:48 AM
The reason for it being the manufacturing sector and not the service sector is the "India Problem". Service is more realistic in real-world terms, but manufacturing is much better in game play terms.

That's... not really true.

I mean, there is a very well defined ration between the manufacturing and service sectors for low colony cost worlds, and IIRC that ratio remains true even for high colony cost worlds as Agriculture & Environment is drawn first and the remainder is divided between Manufacturing and Service.

If you use the Service sector as the tax paying sector you simply need a modifier that increases the effective population required for the same wealth output.


And frankly, with some recoding, or if it's true already, you can have the A&E sector draw primarily from the Service sector for more personnel as colony cost increases, which if the Service sector is your primary income source provides a natural constraint on your wealth production and an incentive for more extensive terraforming efforts. It also means that colony worlds are likely to be a net drain on your economy as small populations are disproportionately weighed towards the Manufacturing sector, drawing in wealth for various purposes, while their Service sector is tiny in comparison and can't pay for its production, while the source of the population now has an about equal decrease between taxation and production.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Graham on January 30, 2019, 08:45:02 AM
The reason for it being the manufacturing sector and not the service sector is the "India Problem". Service is more realistic in real-world terms, but manufacturing is much better in game play terms.

Is the purpose of these changes specifically just to fix the India problem, or to do you want to completely replace the association between population and wealth with industry and wealth? I ask this because it seems like the more intuitive option would simply be to take the existing "wealth generation modifier" and add some rules allowing it to dynamically change with time and player investment. Making it colony dependent would be a plus but not required. This could form a solid basis for economic expansion later down the line if it interested you, but would at least function just as well as the current model.

Additionally you spoke earlier of "unemployed" industrial workers still generating a portion of income. Would this not reinforce the "India problem"?
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: MarcAFK on January 30, 2019, 10:02:07 AM
Its true that simply making the service industry as they currently exist the primary wealth producer wouldn't solve the India problem, whats needed is for the service industries to not automatically produce their full taxation potential. There could be a modifiers based on trade, high employment, other civilian activities, etc.
Only worlds which tick every checkbox for civilian activity would be capable of producing their full potential of wealth generation.
The effect I guess is superficially the same as the theoretical india would fail to produce high wealth due to low employment in the proposed changes, compared to this idea where it would also fail to produce high wealth too but due to more complex reasons.
The ultimate difference then is how a player needs to go about increasing their income, on the one hand simply adding more productive facilities and raising employment gives you the wealth boost, while with the service industries and associated modifiers you would need to still ensure a world has high employment, but also good trade and whatever other conditions might be conceivably be determined as necessary to make a good economic producer.
I hope I'm not coming off in the wrong light as I just intend to offer an alternative which might have interesting game play benefits. I see nothing objectively wrong with the proposed system .
Thx for bearing with us through this deluge of ideas, criticism and TLDR.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Jovus on January 30, 2019, 10:22:49 AM
The reason for it being the manufacturing sector and not the service sector is the "India Problem". Service is more realistic in real-world terms, but manufacturing is much better in game play terms.

Would you consider, based on playtesting, a (very much reduced) contribution from raw population as well? That way if someone wants to play "India" he can do so without having to drive a manufacturing sector. After all, the "India" from the problem does have some capabilities, purely from the fact of their large population.

As mentioned, that's all dependent on playtesting for balance points, but I think this could also help avoid situations where the player fights off a threat, but gets bombed into oblivion and is stuck in a negative cycle, unable to get the wealth to get more wealth. Over time, the trickle from raw population should build up enough to allow rebooting.

With your proposed numbers (and no clue what expenditures look like), if 100 wealth comes from 100m manufacturing sector workers, maybe 1 or 5 wealth comes from the same number of 'service sector' workers.

Aside, I haven't seen this mentioned elsewhere in the thread, but have you considered what to do regarding wealth from interplanetary trade?

ETA: Just saw your post in the updates thread stating you'd doubled taxes on civilian shipping; does that mean you intend to keep the shipping economy paradigm more or less the same? (Obviously you're playing with the numbers.)
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Steve Walmsley on January 30, 2019, 10:48:33 AM
Yes, I am keeping shipping the same in mechanics terms and increasing the benefit from that. I may also add extra rare goods produced by specific worlds.

A few people have raised the issue that they find it hard to accept manufacturing should not produce wealth as well as capacity, or something on those lines. To take a real world example: a government orders a ship and pays for it. Part of the cost of the ship is the wages of the people who build it. Those wages are then taxed by the government who paid for the ship, so the workers effectively return a portion of the spend to the government. This is how the proposed model will work in principle. The problem isn't really the tax, but the fact that mines and refineries don't cost anything to run, so you get the tax on those wages without any original spend. However, I don't want to start going further down the rabbit hole by charging for mining.

The service sector 'taxes' are used for non-military/industrial purposes such as health, education, welfare, so they cancel out. I could make it more 'realistic' by taking tax from the service sector and adding the welfare, health education costs to offset the extra income, but that seems pointless in game play terms.

Wealth is intended to provide an extra concern for players to avoid them simply building at full capacity with everything while minerals last. It could be replaced by something else entirely, such as power. In that case, I would create various types of power generation infrastructure - some form of Sorium-based power stations, perhaps geothermal on worlds with high tectonics, or solar-generation on worlds with high temperatures, or hydro power on worlds with a lot of water, etc. Even power satellites that absorb solar energy and beam it to the planet that needs it (with a suitable energy efficiency tech line). Wealth balance could be replaced by power storage. That would require a lot more work though than a change to how wealth is currently created but it would solve the "India Problem". However, changing wealth to power would raise the question of what purpose is served by civilian shipping.

I guess I could always do both :)
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Steve Walmsley on January 30, 2019, 10:50:57 AM
The reason for it being the manufacturing sector and not the service sector is the "India Problem". Service is more realistic in real-world terms, but manufacturing is much better in game play terms.

Is the purpose of these changes specifically just to fix the India problem, or to do you want to completely replace the association between population and wealth with industry and wealth? I ask this because it seems like the more intuitive option would simply be to take the existing "wealth generation modifier" and add some rules allowing it to dynamically change with time and player investment. Making it colony dependent would be a plus but not required. This could form a solid basis for economic expansion later down the line if it interested you, but would at least function just as well as the current model.

Additionally you spoke earlier of "unemployed" industrial workers still generating a portion of income. Would this not reinforce the "India problem"?

Primarily to fix the India problem. Unemployed in this sense means workers in factories that aren't building anything, not unused manufacturing population.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Steve Walmsley on January 30, 2019, 10:53:11 AM
I hope I'm not coming off in the wrong light as I just intend to offer an alternative which might have interesting game play benefits. I see nothing objectively wrong with the proposed system .
Thx for bearing with us through this deluge of ideas, criticism and TLDR.

No, it's fine. The reason I start these threads is to hear all the potential ideas and to consider pitfalls I hadn't though about. Even if I don't use or like an idea, I still appreciate the thought behind it.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Iceranger on January 30, 2019, 10:58:29 AM

Wealth is intended to provide an extra concern for players to avoid them simply building at full capacity with everything while minerals last. It could be replaced by something else entirely, such as power. In that case, I would create various types of power generation infrastructure - some form of Sorium-based power stations, perhaps geothermal on worlds with high tectonics, or solar-generation on worlds with high temperatures, or hydro power on worlds with a lot of water, etc. Even power satellites that absorb solar energy and beam it to the planet that needs it (with a suitable energy efficiency tech line). Wealth balance could be replaced by power storage. That would require a lot more work though than a change to how wealth is currently created but it would solve the "India Problem". However, changing wealth to power would raise the question of what purpose is served by civilian shipping.


It looks to me with your proposed wealth model (minus the civ shippping), changing 'wealth' to 'energy' and 'financial center' to 'power plant', it will almost work flawlessly as the energy system. :)
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Bremen on January 30, 2019, 11:05:28 AM
I get why people are saying that but I still think wealth works better. I just think of it as gold or its equivalent instead of fiat currency, which is below the level the game is modeling.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: King-Salomon on January 30, 2019, 11:42:34 AM
if wealth would be changed to "power" -that's completly ignoring the upkeep "costs" of military units (especially groudn units) in wealth ... I am afraid that this aspect of wealth is completly forgotten in the discussion at the moment as I am only reading about "installation A costs xy wealth, installation B brings YZ wealth"...

"power" would cover the installation aspect (and part research costs) but not the upkeep costs of the military and the rest of research costs... so I would at least let some kind of "wealth" in the game as it is - even if the "power" idea has some points to it...
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Steve Walmsley on January 30, 2019, 12:04:11 PM
It looks to me with your proposed wealth model (minus the civ shippping), changing 'wealth' to 'energy' and 'financial center' to 'power plant', it will almost work flawlessly as the energy system. :)

Except workers producing 'energy' doesn't really make sense compared to producing taxes. If I went down the power route, it would not be based on number of people.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Steve Walmsley on January 30, 2019, 12:06:33 PM
if wealth would be changed to "power" -that's completly ignoring the upkeep "costs" of military units (especially groudn units) in wealth ... I am afraid that this aspect of wealth is completly forgotten in the discussion at the moment as I am only reading about "installation A costs xy wealth, installation B brings YZ wealth"...

"power" would cover the installation aspect (and part research costs) but not the upkeep costs of the military and the rest of research costs... so I would at least let some kind of "wealth" in the game as it is - even if the "power" idea has some points to it...

Yes, very good point. I might look at power at some point as an interesting addition, but I think I have to stay with wealth because removing it would cause a lot more problems than it solved.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Iceranger on January 30, 2019, 12:39:02 PM
It looks to me with your proposed wealth model (minus the civ shippping), changing 'wealth' to 'energy' and 'financial center' to 'power plant', it will almost work flawlessly as the energy system. :)

Except workers producing 'energy' doesn't really make sense compared to producing taxes. If I went down the power route, it would not be based on number of people.

if wealth would be changed to "power" -that's completly ignoring the upkeep "costs" of military units (especially groudn units) in wealth ... I am afraid that this aspect of wealth is completly forgotten in the discussion at the moment as I am only reading about "installation A costs xy wealth, installation B brings YZ wealth"...

"power" would cover the installation aspect (and part research costs) but not the upkeep costs of the military and the rest of research costs... so I would at least let some kind of "wealth" in the game as it is - even if the "power" idea has some points to it...

Yes, very good point. I might look at power at some point as an interesting addition, but I think I have to stay with wealth because removing it would cause a lot more problems than it solved.

Since each installation has fixed amount of workers, instead of saying '50k workers in that financial center generate 3x tax', it can be interpreted as 'that power plant generates 3x energy needs 50k workers'. Better economic techs can be translated to more efficient power plants, generating more power with the same amount of workers. Similarly, factories consume energy to produce, instead of consume wealth to produce and give back a bit as tax.

For unit upkeep, consuming energy to maintain units isn't totally unreasonable. This can represent the energy needed to maintain/train/house those ground units.

Actually, except for the 'energy' system does not count for civ shipping income, and that we don't store years worth of 'energy' like we can for wealth, the proposed wealth system already resembles an energy system if you interpret the abstract 'wealth' as 'energy'. So IMHO adding another 'energy' system in parallel to that sounds questionable.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Happerry on January 30, 2019, 12:56:53 PM
Maybe money could literally be energy like Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri had it?

Though personally I think the new money system as suggested originally would probably work ok.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Barkhorn on January 30, 2019, 01:05:12 PM
I really like the idea of including electrical power as something the player has to consider, for a couple of reasons.  First, it provides an excuse to build big things in deep space; think Dyson Spheres and power beaming stations.

Second, you could include waste heat as a worry as well; electricity use on an transnewtonian industrial scale will heat the planet up.  This is true even excluding fossil fuel use.  Run too much industry and you cook your planet.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Steve Walmsley on January 30, 2019, 01:19:31 PM
I really like the idea of including electrical power as something the player has to consider, for a couple of reasons.  First, it provides an excuse to build big things in deep space; think Dyson Spheres and power beaming stations.

Second, you could include waste heat as a worry as well; electricity use on an transnewtonian industrial scale will heat the planet up.  This is true even excluding fossil fuel use.  Run too much industry and you cook your planet.

Yes, I also like the idea of power generation being a consideration. It's something I have considered a few times in the past but never actually got around to it. I don't think it replaces wealth for the reasons mentioned earlier in the thread, but I do think it would be an interesting addition to the game (alongside wealth).
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Scandinavian on January 30, 2019, 02:13:59 PM
I would suggest (in addition to the changes being contemplated here to solve the "India problem") imposing a negative interest on Wealth balances (both positive and negative, but more negative on positive balances).

An economy can only reasonably "save up" so much productive capacity before it begins going to waste - people do not keep building inventory that is not consumed; eventually they curtail production. And not-producing today does not increase your factory's ability to produce tomorrow; that potential production is simply lost. While it is possible to accumulate reserves of real capital, this too has its limits: Skills that go unused decay, capital stock becomes obsolete, and the institutions needed to run complex industrial supply chains dissolve if they are not occasionally exercised.

Similarly, on the other end, if you overclock your economy for long enough, it becomes the new normal. Workers write off the vacation they have accrued from working overtime, preventative maintenance backlogs on capital equipment is erased when the equipment breaks and is replaced, on-the-job training replaces formal education, etc.

This also imposes a soft wealth cap: If positive balances attrition at ten per cent per year, then an economy that "saves up" a quarter of its "income" would converge on a reserve that would allow it to double its production for three years without incurring any penalties (all else being equal). Which seems reasonable.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Conscript Gary on January 30, 2019, 06:06:07 PM
The fact that unused-but-still-employed workers still generate wealth makes the changes work, I think.
Now factories and the other similar installations operate the same way civilian mining complexes do:
Either you leave them idle, and their output is abstracted away into the civilian economy while you get wealth from it,
Or you make direct use of their output, paying for it in the process.
Thinking of it in those terms helps it make a bit more sense, I think.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: QuakeIV on January 30, 2019, 10:11:56 PM
Since financial centers are effectively just giving work to civilians at this point, can they be called 'civilian industry' or something instead?

Also, relating to the power generation, that could lead to something really cool: Your civilization needing sorium continuously or some other such material  to generate power and keep the industry running.  Sure you could use solar power, but that couldn't even begin to hold a candle to the power of TN nuclear or fusion reactors.  Minding, solar is just a kindof cruddy way to harness the power of a giant fusion reaction.

e: You wouldn't necessarily need civilizations to be total gas guzzlers, but some significant consumption of fuel could be a fun mechanic and a strong reason to compete for big resource deposits.  You can potentially ignore a lack of mineral income for a long time, not so if a mineral is literally neccessary to continue existing.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: King-Salomon on January 31, 2019, 03:52:39 AM
I am trying to find a reason now to create colonies at system body's that will never be industrialised as the population there has now zero impact...

especially if the population will forever be too small to generate trade goods..

so the colony would only "use up" space in the menues without benefit...

somebody an idea that I might be missing?  ???
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Steve Walmsley on January 31, 2019, 04:21:55 AM
I am trying to find a reason now to create colonies at system body's that will never be industrialised as the population there has now zero impact...

especially if the population will forever be too small to generate trade goods..

so the colony would only "use up" space in the menues without benefit...

somebody an idea that I might be missing?  ???

Quite small populations generate trade and wealth through colonization, which is important with the increase in trade tax income. Also, because you can't shutdown sectors of industry, you need to maximize pop growth and the size of the manufacturing sector or you will not be able to expand industry. This is even more important now the worker requirements for shipyards and GFCC are significantly higher. Both of these are boosted by multiple small populations, as small pops grow faster and have larger (in percentage terms) manufacturing sectors.

For example, if Mars had no minerals, it would still be a long-term benefit to colonise Mars rather than leave the population on Earth.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: alex_brunius on January 31, 2019, 05:14:40 AM
Since financial centers are effectively just giving work to civilians at this point, can they be called 'civilian industry' or something instead?

I don't think putting "Industry" in the name would be a good thing since it would be quite confusing seeing how many other types of industry Aurora 4X already has.

One potential thing that could be done is to call it "Financial and Trade Center" instead, and have them also boost / linked to trade goods production, while trade goods demand can be controlled by Population. That way a Financial Center also generates more trade opportunities.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: TCD on January 31, 2019, 01:48:54 PM
I am trying to find a reason now to create colonies at system body's that will never be industrialised as the population there has now zero impact...

especially if the population will forever be too small to generate trade goods..

so the colony would only "use up" space in the menues without benefit...

somebody an idea that I might be missing?  ???
Is there a particular reason why you think that tiny colonies with no industrial or mining potential should be built? I mean if you want a RP reason then we could probably come up with some for you (religious zealots would be the obvious one).

But I'm not sure why the game should reward adding purposeless colonies to every moon in Sol. Even on earth colonies have been resource sinks as often as they have been beneficial.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: King-Salomon on January 31, 2019, 03:11:16 PM
Is there a particular reason why you think that tiny colonies with no industrial or mining potential should be built? I mean if you want a RP reason then we could probably come up with some for you (religious zealots would be the obvious one).

But I'm not sure why the game should reward adding purposeless colonies to every moon in Sol. Even on earth colonies have been resource sinks as often as they have been beneficial.

Yes, Steve invested a lot of work to make small body's easier to colonize - even Comets are now habitable ... if it does not make any kind of sense to colonize this body's it was just time and work wasted...

it is not that I WANT to colonize every dustball but now that Steve has make it easier and more likely it would be a shame if it would never be used at all...

if small colonies (50.000 pop max on a comet) are still worthwhile it is ok...
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Steve Walmsley on January 31, 2019, 03:22:13 PM
Yes, Steve invested a lot of work to make small body's easier to colonize - even Comets are now habitable ... if it does not make any kind of sense to colonize this body's it was just time and work wasted...

it is not that I WANT to colonize every dustball but now that Steve has make it easier and more likely it would be a shame if it would never be used at all...

if small colonies (50.000 pop max on a comet) are still worthwhile it is ok...

My intention was to provide more options rather than to encourage a lot of minor colonies. If a system has an asteroid belt in the habitable zone, you could end up with a couple of hundred colony cost 2.00 LG bodies.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Father Tim on January 31, 2019, 04:20:24 PM
Ah, the Octopus Empire's fabled Ring system, with its five asteroid belts and many billions of population.  What a great tragedy it was to cephalo-kind that dark day when the enemies came. . .

Remember the Ring!
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Steve Walmsley on January 31, 2019, 06:02:15 PM
Ah, the Octopus Empire's fabled Ring system, with its five asteroid belts and many billions of population.  What a great tragedy it was to cephalo-kind that dark day when the enemies came. . .

Remember the Ring!

LOL that is a LONG time ago :)
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Jorgen_CAB on February 01, 2019, 09:22:22 PM
To be honest I don't see the reason why population itself should generate wealth at all, I would let certain production types generate a modest amount of wealth such as factories could generate some wealth as well as production. But most facilities should basically be net loss.

Wealth should then come from Financial Centers, Civilian trade and Civilian mining complexes and fuel harvesters.

This would make it more clear...

So you have to use wealth to keep most of the facilities going while Factories don't cost Wealth but give you a small amount and some production... all other facilities cost wealth to operate based on what they produce.

Workers should then cost Wealth not giving wealth, wealth is something population consume not produce, at least that is the way I see it. You can easily disreard the civilian sector and just assume that is a zero sum games, but the working portion of the economy should cost wealth whether they are employed or not. Tha would give you an incentive to make sure as many in your population work instead of being unemployed.

Just some example

Financial Center = Base wealth of 50 times tech level
Factories = 5 wealth per production point (also make conventional factories generate very little wealth)
Everything else cost wealth based on production (can vary depending on a what it is)
Each 10000 worker population (not civilian pop) cost 1 Wealth times the same tech level that Financial centers are modified with (people will tend to need more wealth as technology rises)

I would also add in a small Wealth cost for operating Commercial ships based on some formula on their production cost. Something you pay like you pay everything else. Nothing should ever be completely free. This is basically the salaries for the crew and maintenance the ships need over time.

This was just an example... I did not really look at the numbers in the current game or anything or if these are workable at all.

This would in my opinion be a more simple system that also make lots of sense.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Steve Walmsley on February 02, 2019, 09:19:31 AM
To be honest I don't see the reason why population itself should generate wealth at all.

A lot of government income (real world) comes from the taxes paid by the population. When wages rise, do does tax income. Tech industries tend to pay more so countries with a lot of industry tend to have more income than countries with mainly agricultural economies. In any event, the new rules are not intended to reflect reality, but are intended to simulate that more industrialised economies tend to have more wealth (to avoid the India problem and the conventional start problem). I'll see how the rules function during play test and then adjust if required.
Title: Re: Wealth Generation
Post by: Jorgen_CAB on February 02, 2019, 10:02:16 AM
To be honest I don't see the reason why population itself should generate wealth at all.

A lot of government income (real world) comes from the taxes paid by the population. When wages rise, do does tax income. Tech industries tend to pay more so countries with a lot of industry tend to have more income than countries with mainly agricultural economies. In any event, the new rules are not intended to reflect reality, but are intended to simulate that more industrialised economies tend to have more wealth (to avoid the India problem and the conventional start problem). I'll see how the rules function during play test and then adjust if required.

I agree with that but I don't really view wealth as money as it is an abstraction of common resources and distribution of them.

Population really don't produce those resources as much as they consume them in general. Industry provide them and people consume them.

What I mean is that if people would disregard their personal consumption of resources and give them to the state the state would get more resources, taxes do represent that in a way. But from a game perspective the population are more a drain on the resources and demand their fair share of the wealth.

What I tried to explain is that you have a certain wealth "income" and part of it needs to be distributed to the population other need to be distributed to the industry to keep it going along with the TN materials.

In this context financial centers are more common resource (both practical and theoretical resources) and logistical functions that make sure these resources exist for society to function properly thus producing the base at which Wealth and prosperity can exist in the first place.

So in a nutshell the Financial centers are the Software Companies, Mining consortiums, Factories, Movie Makers etc.. everything that actually produce Wealth. You then need to make sure your Worker population get their fair share of the Wealth and then funnel some of the resources such as providing Architects, Engineers, Common materiel resources, Tools & Machinery etc that the state need to support their endeavors.

The Wealth the people consume are the things we all consume every day, from food to electronics, entertainment etc...

This is my take on how I view Wealth actually working in the game as an abstraction. To me it has nothing to do with money... money is only a facilitator of economy and has no worth in and of itself while Wealth does.