This is quite far in the future but I want to hear what you guys have planned so far.
How will armies work in the game? In earlier stages we can simulate individual units/creatures/whatever in an rts environment but later on, especially in the industrial stage, there has to be some kind of system for armies or controlling groups of units.
My suggestion would be for players to set army “blueprints” consisting of a customizable amount of manpower and equipment. Then the player can set their own “health bars” based on different variables of the army. For example, a red bar for comparing the amount of people in the army vs the ideal amount of people in the army, a yellow bar for the amount of small weaponry, and an orange bar for the amount of artillery/tanks/other heavy war machines.
What do you guys think?
i like your plan for organization but im curious on how the troops would move about aswell
Use the hoi4 division template
If we directly copy a system from another game. It would result in at least harsh critisism, at most a lawsuit.
But I like your idea, to build upon the Hearts of Iron 4 template system would be a great start. In fact I can tell you my suggestion for this was originally derived from Hearts of Iron 4.
One thing I think is interesting about wars is the question of scale.
So you could play as a single soldier in a line during the battle (maybe like mount and blade warband) or as a commander of a unit, or as a commander of an army (like the total war series) or as a high level planner (like in Hoi) or even as a president who commits resources and has no power over how they are used.
It’s interesting in Thrive to think about ascending through the scales as time passes. Village vs village conflict will be very different from star empire vs star empire.
That would be cool. But how can that be rendered realistically? I fully support the idea, and some village to village combat with that mechanic is doable. But for space scale or even nation scaled combat is that even possible? We’re talking about rendering millions of objects fighting each other with explosions going around everywhere, I don’t even think top gaming computers nowadays can do that.
It’s possible that you could cheat it by only actually simulating a few of the displayed number, similar to that of SimCity 2013 (it would exaggerate the population while only simulating so many sims). Good luck on getting that to work, though.
You could also have something like civilisation’s units, where a few ridiculously enlarged models represent armies/navies/air wings/spacefleets.
I think both of these options are basically sacrificing realism for performance. Which is completely fine imo. I’d rather have the game playable than realistic.
Maybe we could have something like what the Total War games do, but on a larger scale and a bit more subtle.
If you don’t know what I’m talking about, the Total War games, (especially the older ones) had a system where further-away enemies used simpler models to not eat up as much performance, while closer-up enemies used more detailed ones, to still allow the player to see the battle up close. (A mistake however was that the simpler models had a slightly different colour, which when you zoomed in a bit made the units in a circle around the camera look different that the ones outside the circle.) This could be done in a bigger (and maybe a bit more subtle) scale, to maybe even have really-far-away enemies be reduced to only a couple moving colours, but this might create issues with how to generate the simpler creatures. I feel like that is an issue that can be solved however, but we may first need to know how the creatures are generated (so we aren’t far enough in development to know if it can be fixed).
This sort of reminds me of the Fleet Manager that was added to a space empire game called Stellaris recently (not the same though). The idea was to make micromanagement easier, so the player can replenish a fleet’s lost corvettes, destroyers, etc. without making each individual build order, since the game knows what amount of each ship the fleet should have.
One unique feature is that the Fleet Manager keeps track of the different player-designed classes of ship the fleet uses. Given that Thrive is also meant to be very customizable, this is something to look up to (not copy, of course).
The system’s still being tweaked, so it’ll be a good idea to keep track of the improvements the developers make to it, as well as any mistakes they make that we don’t want to repeat.
Quick couple links from the older forum and the wiki to avoid repetition and give inspiration:
From the forum:
Orders instead of omnipotent players that can control everyone (medium-sized, but the discussion never really settled on something)
squad editor (only really started becoming useful after ATPKraken’s comment)
some stuff about military research (a tad large, will probably take a couple minutes to read)
From the wiki
Military camps (for supplying troops create more troops)
tech editor (for designing your own weapons (and normal tools, but who has time for peace?))
squad editor (makes sense, I guess)
squads and details about them