Morals and Your Race

For what's not in 'Top Priority Game Design'. Post your ideas, visions, suggestions for the game, rules, modifications, etc.

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utilae
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Morals and Your Race

#1 Post by utilae »

Should you be able to choose whether your race is good or evil?

Maybe you can say that your race is evil. Your populace will not be against you going to war in such a case, but good players will want to kill you (though since they good, they should just lock you away). There is a diplomacy issue, where in multiplayer a good player will not have a reason to hate an evil player. There would need to be some kind of incentive, eg you get more points for killing a evil player if you are good. But the best solution is probably that your populace is against you allying, or letting live a race that is the opposite of your morals.

Or if their are certain sins (war, expand, spy, genocide, should your race agree with some and not others.)

Maybe your populace will not be against war or genocide, but they are against spying and genocide.

Sapphire Wyvern
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Re: Morals and Your Race

#2 Post by Sapphire Wyvern »

utilae wrote:Should you be able to choose whether your race is good or evil?
Good and evil are very absolute concepts in the way you're presenting them... I think FO will prove to be (somewhat) more relative in its racial characterisations.

Probably, some mostly-benevolent races will have characteristics that seem evil, and vice versa. Some races will consider other races' attitudes to be "evil"... for instance, a warlike race might consider pacifists to be weaklings who encourage others to lose their honour, which would be "evil" behaviour from the point of view of the warlike "honourable" race.

A binary split between "good" and "evil" probably doesn't give us enough room to move. Adding a law vs chaos element won't correct the problem... :)
Maybe you can say that your race is evil. Your populace will not be against you going to war in such a case, but good players will want to kill you (though since they good, they should just lock you away). There is a diplomacy issue, where in multiplayer a good player will not have a reason to hate an evil player. There would need to be some kind of incentive, eg you get more points for killing a evil player if you are good. But the best solution is probably that your populace is against you allying, or letting live a race that is the opposite of your morals.

Or if their are certain sins (war, expand, spy, genocide, should your race agree with some and not others.)

Maybe your populace will not be against war or genocide, but they are against spying and genocide.

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skdiw
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#3 Post by skdiw »

gal civ had morality and I liked it. Being good and evil has distinction and along with it, advantages and disadvantages: being good, you tend to do better diplomatically especially with other good-aligned, more trade, research good-only techs, but your planet usually starts with some disadvantages; being evil, you don't get the advantes of being good, but you get evil-techs, and your planets starts off with better conditions.

Morality is how the AI plays their racial characteristics. For example, the psilons are good at researching. An "evil" psilons might research military techs and use mass-destruction weapon more than a "good" psilon, that does the opposite.

The player gain morality through choices that occurs occasionally in the game. Say, if you colonize a planet and discover some ancient machine that boost research but the machine generates harmful radiation to the scientists operate on it do you: good, forgo the bonus and send no scientist, neutral: send in some curious and willing scientists and get some small bonus, or evil: how many times do I have to tell you? people are a resources! send everybody in! and get maximum bonus.
:mrgreen:

Tyreth
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#4 Post by Tyreth »

I agree with Sapphire Wyvern. What appears to be good or evil is relative.

Consider Earth's history (it is our policy not to compare to modern politics to avoid offending anyone). During the Crusades, those participating saw themselves as being on a good and righteous crusade. Those who were the victims saw them as evil. Would you, playing a race doing the equivalent of the crusades, call yourself good - even though other races see you as evil?

FreeOrion races will contain these areas where different viewers see someone's actions differently. The races in FO will have encountered each other before, and have long histories together, complete with anger at past events, and desires for the future.

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utilae
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#5 Post by utilae »

Good and evil are sides that opose each other. Good has a set of sins and evil has a set of sins. Good are against those who comit it's sins. Evil is against those that comit it's sins. This is what defines good and evil.


So, if we have some sins, eg
War
Spying
Protection
Peace

Goods sins would be War, Spying.
Evils sins would be Peace Protection.
Neutral sins could be Protection, War.

The sins would have to be things that are not only good or evil. Otherwise if the only sins are good and evil ones, then the races will be good or evil. So we need sins that are in different categories.

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skdiw
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#6 Post by skdiw »

The good and evil, as the way you presented, won't work. Morality cannont be implemented as you described. You cannot let morality prevent players from playing important features of the game, such as waging war.

Good needs to be able to wage wars. They need to be able to defend themselves and attack sometimes (like the crusaders realism example).
:mrgreen:

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utilae
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#7 Post by utilae »

The good and evil, as the way you presented, won't work. Morality cannont be implemented as you described. You cannot let morality prevent players from playing important features of the game, such as waging war.

Good needs to be able to wage wars. They need to be able to defend themselves and attack sometimes (like the crusaders realism example).

Players will not be limited from playing important features of the game. It will work something like morale did in Moo2. If you comit a sin, eg war, then your people do not like it and so their morale drops. Morale affects production, research, farming and growth, so with low morale, your production, research, farming and growth would be hampered.

Good races, who believe that war is bad, like us humans, still go to war. We as a race are against many things, yet we still can bring ourselves to do things that we know is wrong, eg spying. We wouldn't want it done to us, but we do it, to survive. So, survival or something equally great allows us to go against the things we beleive.

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#8 Post by Daveybaby »

Good and evil are always relative terms, and its overly simplistic to apply them to different human cultures, let alone totally alien races.

I think there could be scope for applying psychological preferences to each race, and if the player did things against their races preferences then unrest would increase (BoTF did this, e.g. if you played the kilingons, your population was happier when you were at war, and vice versa for the federation). The bonuses and penalties werent enough to totally hamstring the player if they did something 'out of character', but there was at least an incentive to role-play your chosen race.

I've modelled (but not yet implemented) something like this for my design, each race has a number of independent sliders which define various aspects of its psychological makeup, e.g:

Aggressive <-----------------> Pacifist

Acceptive <-----------------> Xenophobic

Honourable <-----------------> Pragmatic

Also, Ray Kerby has implemented something similar in his Moo1 fan project, to try to encourage the player to role-play their chosen race (as the AI is forced to do, giving it a disadvantage).

And something like Moo3's abandoned ethos system could also be used to model population preferences, and thus guide player choices, independently of racial hardwiring.
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#9 Post by skdiw »

utilae wrote:The good and evil, as the way you presented, won't work. Morality cannont be implemented as you described. You cannot let morality prevent players from playing important features of the game, such as waging war.

Good needs to be able to wage wars. They need to be able to defend themselves and attack sometimes (like the crusaders realism example).

Players will not be limited from playing important features of the game. It will work something like morale did in Moo2. If you comit a sin, eg war, then your people do not like it and so their morale drops. Morale affects production, research, farming and growth, so with low morale, your production, research, farming and growth would be hampered.
it won't work. the good will always lose to the evil. all the players would be evil, because against the good, all the evil player have to do is attack and go to war. the evil gains a econ advantage and would win against good, who gets an econ disadvantage if they fought back. and if good don't fight back, they just get over run by the evil military. did you try to think through how your idea would work?
:mrgreen:

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Good / Evil

#10 Post by guiguibaah »

Who can forget about the Illwrath, the giant spiders who torture their victimes to the gods of Dogar and Kazon...

.. And who could forget on the responses you can give to one of the Illwrath ship captains...

Illwrath - "We are the Illwrath, we are EVIL, we do as what our gods, the great Dogar and Kazon, command us. We shall peel the skin off your flesh and watch you cry in agony"

You - "If you are EVIL, and you do EVIL things, then wouldn't doing good things be an EVIL thing"

Illwrath - "No! We are pure EVIL!"

You - "And if you do Good acts, then wouldn't that be considered by your culture as EVIL, therefore, you are Good".

(Forget what the Illwrath response was, but it always ended up in combat)
Humorous exchange on what one considers to be Evil and good depending on your culture.)
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utilae
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#11 Post by utilae »

I think we will be a bit smarter than that.

A morale drop or increase would be triggered by an event.

If your sin is War, then your race will have a morale drop if you declare war. If you are the one who war is declared on, then your morale won't drop and might even rise (nationality). The reason you don't have a morale drop when your are in the war but not starting the war, is because everything is justified to the people. Even the people themselves justify it, "they attacked us, we will survive, etc".

The aim of the moral system is for the people to punish your for doing something that they don't agree with. And for you to punish other races for doing something you don't agree with (or them not liking what you are doing).

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#12 Post by Moriarty »

The aim of the moral system is for the people to punish your for doing something that they don't agree with. And for you to punish other races for doing something you don't agree with (or them not liking what you are doing).
WHile I agree with most of the posts in this thread about the nature of good and evil being different for different people and at different times, I believe the above quote points to something interesting.
Rather than having a fixed good and evil everyone would be in relation to everyone else, and each empire would be responsible to uphold it's citizens morals (or at least profess to).

i.e. You're a race of xenophobic pacifists. You meet a race of nasty warmongers who rather like the look of that moon over there that has a florishing colony of yours on it.
So what do you do? Well you would defend the moon in every way possible, including warfare as a last resort. And - counter-intuitively - you would get a bonus for going to war with them because they are "evil" to your race (the enemy started it etc etc), just as warlike peeps would get a bonus too as you're "evil" to them.
But wantonly attack another race of pacifists of your own accord and the bonus would turn into a big ugly negative.

What I'm trying to say is that the notion of morals needn't be fixed. They could (just like the real world) be relative for different people and different sides.

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#13 Post by Dreamer »

Moriarty wrote:So what do you do? Well you would defend the moon in every way possible, including warfare as a last resort. And - counter-intuitively - you would get a bonus for going to war with them because they are "evil" to your race (the enemy started it etc etc), just as warlike peeps would get a bonus too as you're "evil" to them.
The main thing is: Should you be able to just defend that moon or completely destroy their civilization. This also deals with another issue. If your race CAN react to external threat still some things need to be define, especially how hard and how long.

Maybe a race pick can be fanatism, so you can launch an all out retribution when a mere freither was attacked by a enemy ship.

solidcordon
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#14 Post by solidcordon »

blah
Last edited by solidcordon on Fri Dec 15, 2006 1:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Krikkitone
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#15 Post by Krikkitone »

Daveybaby wrote: Aggressive <-----------------> Pacifist

Acceptive <-----------------> Xenophobic

Honourable <-----------------> Pragmatic
This is probably the best suggestion for this,

So that you get penalties/bonuses for acting in a certain way (ON TOP of the regular penalties/bonuses) so an Aggressive race might get War Happiness ON TOP of the normal (baseline) War Weariness.

Having them slowly shift over time would be interesting too. So that if you started out Pacifist, but fought Aggressive War after Aggressive War.... your people would become more and more aggressive (of course there would be massive unhappiness in the menatime... but if you can survive that)

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