Geoff the Medio wrote:
Robbie.Price: You've made a big deal about a single stockpile location implying that capturing that location would instantly destroy or severely cripple an empire. Why do you assume / state that this would be the case? An empire losing its stockpile location would presumably lose its stockpile, which is a blow, but it's not necessarily game ending. Similarly, inability to stockpile if the stockpile location is cut off from an empire or sub-empire is inconvenient, but doesn't prevent planets from functioning entirely. The stockpile really just smoothes out unexpected or fast changes in resource output; a group of planets, or an entire empire, would be quite capable of functioning without a stockpile at all.
The reason I focus on this is because the time you need most your stockpile is the time when fast changes are going on, as you said. The time which fast changes are going on most is when your at war, especially a sudden unexpected war. Since cutting an empire it two probably is a opening war move, rather then a mid war move. The time which you need the stock hold most is the time we're preventing access to it. True enough, and empire should be able to run without a stock hold, This is true. But The Reason for having stock holds is to have resources on rainy days. . . see above comments.
Geoff the Medio wrote:
We don't want the entire empire to be interchangable, such that capturing a single planet never has any effect other than a proportional reduction in resource output... Rather, we have wonder-like buildings and specials and other means, such as being the political capitol and/or stockpile location that makes some planets more important than others. This is not a bad thing.
Issues of whether stockpile locations can be moved (probably) or what happens if empires merge (a single stockpile location is chosen somehow) are relatively minor implementation details that aren't particularly important to the basic plan discussion.
My suggestion doesn't make the entire empire interchangable, it simply makes it so that as far as resources are concerned races are not forced to have a weak spot.
Geoff the Medio wrote:
...as long as the UI does not have to ever show all the stockpiles, and the user doesn't have to care about all the stock piles, then the fact that under the UI there are multiple stockpiles does not make anything more complex.
Hiding information about a complicated system does not make it simple; it makes it like MOO3.
The information is not 'hidden' in the sense that it never matters. We don't hide the damage calculations during battle, where dice are rolled and numbers are compared. We also don't show those numbers because they convey no information value. The same is true for the planet stock holds, There is no information in the amount of minerals a planet has, or amount of food it has. All that matters is the amount of minerals/food the sub-empire has. The use of planet by planet stock holds is only and simply an accounting practice. It is a method, by which sub-empires on both sides of, and inside of, a direct-indirect blockade may have access to some portion of the pre-blockade stockpile. There are many other things we don't show the user, because it's far to much data, and far too little information. WE could do entirely without the planet by planet stockholds, and have each side of the blockade be given a calculated % of the stockhold. This would be UI identical. You look on one side of the blockade, you see the resources available on that side, on the other side you see the resources of that side. On the blockade itself you see the resources of the planet. . .
One of the main questions for the topic was ~approximately~ *Should (in)blockaded planets have any stockhold?* The reason we tended towards the answer no, was only because figuring out how to split the galactic stock hold into sub stock holds was a logistic nightmare. *with tons of case statements for if the empire is split then sub split, then resub split then two of the subsplit groups rejoin what do we do, if two of the join but no to the group they split from what do we do. . . . *
The planet by planet solution is a logistics solution to that logistics nightmare.
But somehow without consensus we dropped the idea of blockaded planets having resource as being too complex to manage. (do mostly to the above) the above no longer needs to be a problem so the proposal that planets on the 'far' side of a blockade should have access to stock set aside for hard times remains open.
Geoff the Medio wrote:
Separate stockpile for each sub-empire adds a lot more numbers for the player to keep track of (amount, consumption, production, net change this turn for each sub-empire for each resource). The user does need to keep track of these, and thus the UI does need to show them because if it / the player doesn't need to keep track, then why do we have stockpiles at all?
If the UI does not "show all the stock piles" then how can there be "[multiple stockpiles] under the UI" ...?
When an empire has been split into two, via a blockade. the user treats them in two parts, and the game treats them the same way. The goal is to make those two parts as intuitive as possible. So that users feel they understand what's going on with their game.
Being forced to balance an entire region of your empire so that it uses all the resources it makes, without excess or deficit every turn, until you life the blockade, does not seam intuitive to me. That seams like a Micromanagement nightmare.
Every turn, with the one stockpile suggestion, the food consumption on the 'far' side of the blockade changes (pop grows, shrinks, planets might be taken...). So every turn one has to go to all those planets, on the far side, check that none of them are starving *or have a UI to take you to each starving planet* then run around to the other planets and increase decrease food production to match. And if you finished building a ship that turn, you have to do the same thing. Either you accept the loss of food/minerals each turn, or you run around to most of the planets on the far side and micromanage your economy to be perfectly using everything it makes that turn, every turn.
Conversely with *a* solution where by *some* mechanism *a portion of* stockpiled resources remain usable on the far side. one only has to go to the far side and check that that side will not run out this turn. you look at the resources for that side, see they are not going to be negative. if they are then do as you would always do anyway, find a planet, increase it's resource production till the situation is positive for all resources if possible. If you overshoot that's *OK* because it just means next turn you can undershoot the break even point *if you want* for that resource and produce more of something else. Eventually *perhaps* one side of your empire *might* run out of something, if that side can not produce as much of that as it needs to be 100% productive this is how stockpiles intuitively work. If you don't have enough production *on one side* to match consumption *on that side* you draw from your reserves *on that side* till they are drained *on that side*. Rather then that side becomes instantaneously unproductive because it's no longer connected to the magic fridge so magic that we can only have one in the empire, regardless of the empires size.
As the game runs now we only ever care about the net change and the absolute value of each of the 5 resources. Some of these 5 resources would not be effected by blockades. In fact only 2 and a half of them are if my understanding serves me. So when you get blockaded you have 2 and a half more pieces of information to juggle if you have some form of resource pool splitting, without splitting the pool you have N more pieces of information. where N is some fraction of the number of planets on the 'far' side of the blockades where you have to run around turn by turn to balance perfectly supply and demand.
In short there are two reasons to have a stockpile.
1. rainy days
2. not having to care turn to turn that supply equals demand perfectly.
With only one stockpile, reason 1 is at serious risk, and reason 2 only is valid on the side of the stock.
With *An* alternate; reason 1 and 2 are guarded, for the largest part of the empire. (the blockaded planet(s) it(them)self(s) having less reason 2.)
I say *An* because my solution is not the only solution to this problem, it's just one that as a coder looks easiest, and most intuitive.
My question to you is
What is the point of having a stockpile, if it's all in one place and any well executed blockade will prevent you from having access to it when you need it most?
To each of you the best, always,