Quick Feature: Infrastructure

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Aquitaine
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Quick Feature: Infrastructure

#1 Post by Aquitaine » Wed Jun 30, 2004 1:21 pm

This thread exists so we can figure out how to handle the growth of planetary infrastructure, which represents the degree to which colonies have built 'common' techs that every planet will end up with.

This thread is both a debate thread and a public review rolled into one ugly mess, so please try to focus your questions and comments as specifically as possible.

Post your ideas!
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#2 Post by Daveybaby » Wed Jun 30, 2004 2:13 pm

Gah!

Well okay then, since i just this second posted something on this in this thread, i will move it over here.
Aquitaine wrote:If you split infrastructure and Ship production, would you then make an infrastructure focus as well as a Ship production focus? Or would your 'production' focus simply allow you to do both at a higher rate?
Hmmm.... I'd kinda been thinking of infrastucture development as being a separate activity from shipbuilding (and other stuff) production. I'm full of snot today, so not thinking too coherently... but this is what is slowly percolating through the mucus w.r.t. this:

Some Questions :

Does a farming world need industrial infrastructure in order to build its farming infrastructure? If so, how much? How does the player choose how much is the right amount?

So does *every* planet have to have industry as either a primary or secondary focus, or nothing ever gets built (or just builds very slowly)?

If the above is true, is there a 'short cut' to jump starting a world... i.e. put the focus on industry first, so that you have the industrial infrastructure needed to build your farms/mines/labs, then switch to your actual focus after several turns? This would be a bit micromanagementy, and IMO goes against the whole principle of the focus system, which is - set it up once and leave it to develop itself.

And what happens to this industrial capacity once the farming infrastructure is finished? Do we need to keep it around in case another farming improvement comes along and we need to upgrade the farming infrastructure again?

Unless someone can answer those questions in a way that makes sense to my lemsip-addled brain, i would suggest that infrastructure development should be something that just happens alongside (and independently of) any infrastructure thats already been built. i.e. rate of infrastructure development should probably be based on the number of population on the planet and nothing else (well, maybe there could be some 'infrastucture development' techs which could speed things up a bit).

I hope all of that makes some sense to somebody, because i'm not sure it does to me. Bleeeuuuuuurrrrrrgh!
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#3 Post by Aquitaine » Wed Jun 30, 2004 2:22 pm

I tend to think we should unhook infrastructure from focus, because every planet needs infrastructure, but not every planet should require an industrial focus.
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#4 Post by Daveybaby » Wed Jun 30, 2004 3:15 pm

I think thats what i was trying to say, except that when you said it it made sense.
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#5 Post by Geoff the Medio » Wed Jun 30, 2004 3:48 pm

Why is it necessary to have a rating for generic infrastructure? Seems to me this could be abstracted as part of the population number. The capacity to produce each resource could depend on focus settings or meters...

consider Krikkitone's proposal here (where infrastructure is categorized, not generic):
viewtopic.php?p=11953#11953

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#6 Post by Daveybaby » Wed Jun 30, 2004 4:18 pm

The reason to have infrastructure is so that you cant just plonk 100 people down on a fresh planet, set it to 'farming' focus and start cranking out food at maximum capacity right away (although placing 100 people down instead of 5 of them should mean that your infrastructure would develop faster).

Similarly, you dont want people just changing the focus of their planets and immediately reaping the benefits. There should be a gradual change both to encourage planning, and to discourage micromanagement (e.g. people going around tweaking their foci every turn so that they have *exactly* the right amount of food, no more, no less).

And who mentioned generic? I see no problem with having separate infrastructure levels for each of the foci.


The only problem i see with this is whether you mind the fact that everyone is potentially doing 2 jobs at once, i.e. your farmers could be farming at the same time as they are building more farming infrastructure. Personally i dont see that as a problem.
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#7 Post by Geoff the Medio » Wed Jun 30, 2004 5:28 pm

Daveybaby wrote:The reason to have infrastructure is so that you cant just plonk 100 people down on a fresh planet, set it to 'farming' focus and start cranking out food at maximum capacity right away (although placing 100 people down instead of 5 of them should mean that your infrastructure would develop faster).
[...]
Similarly, you dont want people just changing the focus of their planets and immediately reaping the benefits.
Check out Krikkitone's proposal. Focus sets a "goal" and the world develops towards that. I'd suggest:
(Farm Infrastructure Goal) = (Focus % for Farms) * (Population)

and same for mining, research, production infrstructure goals.

The actual infrastructure at a given turn would change towards the goal level by some amount... it could be (1%)*(Population)*(race/special modifiers), or some other factor so that the population # changes the % rate of change...
Daveybaby wrote: And who mentioned generic? I see no problem with having separate infrastructure levels for each of the foci.
Aquitaine wrote:I tend to think we should unhook infrastructure from focus, because every planet needs infrastructure, but not every planet should require an industrial focus.
I thought that's what he meant...

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#8 Post by drek » Wed Jun 30, 2004 6:04 pm

Infrastructure ought to be automatic and completely divorced from Industry.

It basically a measure of the progress of a colony. It's also not entirely required to be distinct value, since in v2 there is no migration of population....there's no way to plop 100 units of population on a planet or otherwise increase the number of people on a planet aside from natural growth.

(This might change with time, though I haven't seen any proposals to change it.)

Currently, I'm liking the following method for dealing with infra:

* Population is assumed to come with it's own infrastructure. There's no seperate variable measuring infra, instead a tag "planet special" is applied to each world:

a: Nascent colony. A newly minted colony. Suffers a penalty to most meters (industry, farming, science, mining, health/growth, construction, enviroment, happiness). This tag trait lasts for 20 turns, reduced by the construction meter. On the UI, the player would see 20 dots that get filled--once all are filled the colony loses it's Nascent status.

b: Core World. A colony that has been in the empire for X turns (maybe 50) -and- has at least 5 friendly worlds one starlane hop away. The homeworld counts as 5 worlds for this purpose (so any world that's been in the empire for 50 turns and is one starlane hop away from the homeworld is Core). Core Worlds grant a huge bonus to the Construction meter, a minor bonus to enviroment meter.

c: Homeworld. Same effects as Core World, plus additional bonuses to *all* meters. The homeworld never recieves the core world trait. It sucks to lose the homeworld, since you never get a new one.

d: Ruined Infrastructure. A colony that has been bombed, or otherwise messed up through event. The effects are a subdued version of nascent colony, and stack with nascent colony, coreworld, homeworld. (a planet can be both nascent and ruined or both core and ruined). The penalties to the happiness meter is more extreme.


[when combined with PC's idea on brainstorming concerning building: building is impossible on ruined or nascent colonies. Otherwise, it's based on the construction meter. When building something, *all* production on that planet is halted (or perhaps halved). No PPs, no Food, no Science, no Mining. Otherwise, there is no cost to build, aside from perhaps an upfront mineral cost.]

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#9 Post by Aquitaine » Wed Jun 30, 2004 7:04 pm

Specifically, what I'm looking for is how to address the arrival of new tech that requires infrastructure. For example, if I research Drektopian Cloning Machines, and they help pop growth, should you automatically get them everywhere? Should you only get it on places with a particular amount of infrastructure? Should this have any effect?
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#10 Post by Xardas » Wed Jun 30, 2004 7:04 pm

I think we should keep infrastructure simple, because it doesnt affect the whole game too much.
Infrastructure should be directly connected with the population.
Then some priorities can be given to the planet (industry, agriculuture, science, wealth, mining)and changing should be simple.
Of course the kind of planet must influenced different values, but why can a planet not switching between mining and agriculuture immedaitely with some mali.
May change the system from industry to agriculture could mean that in the first turn after the change 50% of the possible production is done , 2nd turn 60 % and so on so that after 5 turns the change is completely done, so that changing is not always necessary and full of sense.
I think it gives you a possibility of being flexible, but not unbalanced

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#11 Post by drek » Wed Jun 30, 2004 7:16 pm

I've always imagined techs having different conditions.

Some techs effect the meters of all worlds. These low level techs eventually replicate the v.2 economy: all worlds producing a little of everything, regardless of focus.

Some techs only effect the meters of worlds set to a certain focus. These techs promote specialization.

There could be high level techs that only effect "Core Worlds" and the Homeworld. Your cloning machine example would be a good choice to add this condition to, if we don't want population booms on Nascent worlds.

Which reminds me, one additional infrastructure trait:

"Transitional": A world that's had it's focus changed recently. All resource meters suffer a minor penalty. Disappears in 10 turns, modified by the Construction meter.

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#12 Post by Daveybaby » Wed Jun 30, 2004 8:06 pm

Aquitaine wrote:Specifically, what I'm looking for is how to address the arrival of new tech that requires infrastructure. For example, if I research Drektopian Cloning Machines, and they help pop growth, should you automatically get them everywhere? Should you only get it on places with a particular amount of infrastructure? Should this have any effect?
So you mean, if we get advanced farming tech, how do we decide which planets to upgrade when.

e.g.

we have 2 farming planets. Both using farm tech level 1. Planet 1 is fully developed, i.e. it has maxed out its level 1 farms. Planet 2 is only halfway there, and is still building infrastructure.

If we gain farm tech level 2, its easy enough to decide that we start to upgrade planet 1 immediately. But what about planet 2? Do we stop building farm1, and upgrade the existing farm1 to farm2, or do we continue building farm1 until we are at max capacity, and only then upgrade to farm level 2.



There is an easy way to deal with this. Make new infrastructure techs simply increase the upper limit of infrastructure which can be built.

e.g. a planet can at tech 1 can build 1 point of infrastructure per unit population working in that focus. i.e. the infrastructure factor is 1.0 in that focus. Tech 2 increases this to, say 1.5.

So planet 1 has 100 points of farm infrastructure, planet 2 has 50 points, and the max limit of each planet is 100 points. We gain tech 2, which gives a 50% farming bonus. So we just increase the farming infrastructure limit of each planet to 150 points. Planet 1 can now build a further 50 points of farms before it maxes out, and planet 2 now has 100 points to go. There is no 'upgrade' to perform, infrastructure just continues to increase as normal.

Note that you would probably have to increase the number of farms that each population unit can work by this factor as well, otherwise all you gain for your new tech is 50 farms with no-one working on them.

Also bear in mind that this technique means that any increase in a planets max population will automatically require extra infrastructure to be built to house it. This may or may not be a good thing, depending on where you want to go with things like overcrowding, unemployment etc.
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#13 Post by Daveybaby » Wed Jun 30, 2004 8:09 pm

Geoff the Medio wrote:Check out Krikkitone's proposal. Focus sets a "goal" and the world develops towards that. I'd suggest:
(Farm Infrastructure Goal) = (Focus % for Farms) * (Population)

and same for mining, research, production infrstructure goals.

The actual infrastructure at a given turn would change towards the goal level by some amount... it could be (1%)*(Population)*(race/special modifiers), or some other factor so that the population # changes the % rate of change...
Heh, looks like we agree, we obviously just have some communication problems - cause thats exactly how i see infrastructure working.
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#14 Post by Krikkitone » Wed Jun 30, 2004 8:16 pm

I envision most (economic type) techs having the primary effect of increasing the amount of infrastructure.

Essentially my model would be

Farm Infrastructure Goal (or Maximum useful Farm Infrastructure) = Focus % for Farms * Population * FarmingTechs

The Farm output of a world would then be

Useful Farm Tech * Efficiency [Efficiency would probably not be changed with Tech in most cases but be an effect of things like planetary environment]


The way Infrastructure would Grow.** (# 1 is very important especially if # 2 is not used)

1. Maximum growth rate equal to a % of current Infrastructure
ie Max allowed new Farming Infrastructure =5% of Current Farming Infrastructure (up to the Goal or Maximum)

2. Growth would require Production [the production would go into general infrastructure growth for the planet..or empire if we generalize] as a single line in whatever queue system we use.. making every Infrastructure that was below its goal grow [probably automatically favoring Infrastructres that were farthest below their goal in % terms first.]

For any tech that does Not affect output of the 5 resources
either by allowing more
Infrastructure per Pop unit (Capacity)
OR more
Output per Infrastructure (Efficiency)

Then you could limit those 'non-capacity/efficiency' techs in any way you wanted
1. "Development of the Planet"
Infrastructure OR
Infrastructure/Max. Pop.
This would be Tech dependent though as a 'Fully developed TL 10 world' would score similar to a 'Half developed TL 20 world'
Also this looks at Infrastructure ignoring population, so the world could be at max development for its current population but only 1/2 population

2." Development of the Population"
Infrastructure/Population
Reflects how much of your population on that world is usefully producing for your empire
also Tech dependent ( 'Fully developed TL 10 world' would score similar to a 'Half developed TL 20 world')

3. "Tech Independent Development"
Infrastructure/Goal
Disadvantage.. as soon as you get a new tech this number drops..., also if you are looking at only one type of Infrastructure on the world, a change of Focus will change it.

4. Or a whole bunh of other ways based on Focus Population as % of max, etc.





One side note: Unused infrastructure Above its goal would probably shrink at the same maximum rate as growth, and for free too :),
So if you biobombed a world, the Infrastructure would enter an exponential decay slowly going away.
If you changed Focus however, only a small amount would become unused+ above its goal each turn so that amount would be immediately removed






Effects of this model

The major advantage of this is that most Technologies and Focus changes don't have instant sudden effects, they
1. change your maximum achievable 'Goal'
2. Require time AND resources to reach that goal

Production needs to be used to build up a world, (that's why I'd eliminate that part of the model if production wasn't shared between worlds AND if a Non-Industry Focused world didn't provide the max amount , ie that 5%that could be invested in building up Infrastucture.)

With shared/pooled production (and non-Industry worlds Not able to develop with their own resources) This means that many developing worlds would slow down your ship production. (unless you put shipbuilding ahead of Infrastructure in the queue).

Worlds with Environmental Bonuses to Efficiency or Races/Governments with Bonuses to Efficiency will tend to favor building more of that type of Infrastructure (picking it as a Focus More) (assuming that the resource can be traded to with differently focused Worlds/Governments/Races)

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#15 Post by drek » Wed Jun 30, 2004 9:17 pm

If infrastructure is something the player has to enter into a build queue or otherwise fret about excessively, then we are back into same territory as moo2/civ. Might as well make things interesting and actually return the billion small buildings, rather than use five drab numbers.

Also don't like the idea of technology messing around with infrastructure scores. When a player gains a new toy (be a building or a tech) it should always add a bonus (though this bonus might be conditional) or unlock a new toy. Unlocking more infrastructure potential just isn't fun--the effect is too esoteric and spreadsheety.

It reminds me of the boring techs in Crusader Kings...adding a percentage points here and there. No matter how compelling the name of the tech was in CK, it almost always did the same boring thing. Effects of buildings/techs ought to be obvious to player--I acheived X, so now I can do Y.

Player sees the farming meter is 5. He rolls over it and sees on a tooltip:

+2 from Primary Farming Focus
-2 Crappy Infrastructure
+1 Good Enviroment
+2 Farming Wonder X on -Nearby System- (Only works on Farming worlds)
+1 Technology Y
+1 Technology Z (Only works on Farming worlds)

Very comprehensible, esp. if it's color coded with little icons for each effect type. When that infrastructure penalty disappears, it'll be more or less obvious to a player who pays attention to the details exactly what happened.

Though I toyed with the idea of infra=meters back in brainstorming, currently I'm thinking infra should either be a simple tag or it's own meter-like number (as it was back in PC's orginal infra post).

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