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suliman

Conquer options in modern wargame?

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Hi

Im making a near scifi / post apoc empire builder set on earth in a similar style to the management part of the total war series (turn-based map with armies moving around). You can conquer "regions" around the size of the tiles on a board similar to the board game "Risk". Upon winning a region (which often has several million population and contains many cities/settlements) you can have choises, my ideas so far:

  • Occupy. The most common. Little destruction, little loot, little unrest.
  • Destroy. You gain some extra resources (loot) but mostly destroys infrastructure to make the region less valuable for recapture by your enemies. Large unrest in the population.
  • Resettle. Force part of the population to your other controlled regions. Large unrest, some destruction. New pop in your core regions is good for economy but will lead to unrest.
  • Subjugate. Make the region a vassal state of your empire. You have less control but less negative impact on order and economy of larger empires (similar to CIV 5 puppet cities) 

What are your thoughts? Any other options that come to mind :) The game is rather harsh and WMD and other tools are in it. Moving population is slightly unrealistic in modern times but in a apocalyptic war and with the style and feel of ancient supreme empires (persians, spartans, romans, middle ages holy wars etc) i think it might work.

Resources are funds and influence so the more "evil" options might reduce your influnce.

Edited by suliman

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If there were strength or victory level requirements for the different options that would make the strategic map more dynamic.  For example, if there were levels of victory like many older games had, like "Minor Victory", "Major Victory", and "Decisive Victory" then you might only be allowed to occupy on a minor victory, destroy on a major victory, and subjugate on a decisive victory.  You can, of course, always choose any "lesser" option you qualify for.  This might also be done based on force strength at the end of the battle instead of victory level.  The point is that this would make the strategic map decision making more dynamic as you are now having to decide what level of victory/remaining force strength you are wanting in each battle location instead of just whatever is the bare minimum to win the battle at each location.

This would be one very simple "rule change" that would have ripple effects throughout the entire design of the game and make everything a lot more dynamic and more complex of a situation for the player to work out.  All from this one little addition to what you were thinking, or "1 + 1 = Chess".

 

Edited by Kavik Kang

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Can always include different kinds of trade (supplies/information) while at least neutral, and perhaps an "Ally" option where they keep their ai autonomy, becoming "one of your cities" but one you don't directly control. ("good" option)

Edited by Old Soul

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That is neat Kavik. At least for destroy and resettle you should need a larger military force or something.

Old soul isnt that similar to the "subjugate" option? Oh you mean it's less control that vassal? But if you "force" them to become allies, are they not in effect a vassal state? I dont want two levels of vasselage, that becomes messy.

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The real thing there is how much more dynamic it makes the decision making process on the strategic map.  With just the options alone the player never has any reason, ever, to use more than the minimum force required to win.  By adding the requirements of either victory level, or remaining force strength, or a blending of both, the player has 2 or 3 different "force levels" they might decide to send to that battle and, of course, sending them there means they won't be going somewhere else.  So now instead of "what do I want to take" it becomes "what do I want to take, and how do I want to take it".

Just two rule systems that interact with each other to become exponentially more than the sum of their parts, or, "1 + 1 = Chess".

 

Edited by Kavik Kang

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"Subjugate" is a higher level of victory, in other words would require far more force, than simply destroying.  You are using gaming world terms like "vassal" that are making you think in past games you've played, maybe Europa Universalis in this case, and you are thinking in game terminology and mechainics instead of thinking about the real world.  This is a classic, common problem for people who make games.  Always think about the real-world origins behind common terms used in gaming like "Vassal".  

To destroy a town, you could do that with artillery, or even just setting it on fire.  To "subjugate" a town would involve a "post war occupation" and what you probably know as "nation building".  Obviously, once you think of it in those real world terms, "subjugating" is the hardest, most time consuming, and most force intensive (requires the most force for the longest period of time) that you could attempt.

 

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Vassal is for theme. I want to mix some old concept with modern concept similar to all the ancient rome parallells in warhammer 40k.

"Occupy" might be rebranded "Absorb" as well. Just for thematic reasons.

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Subjugate can realisticly be forced by the empire's total strength as well. Typically as part of a "diplomatic screen" in many games. It doesnt need to be the actual army size when the region is taken.

BUT as a subjugate option triggered from the actual battle of army vs army i agree with you Kavik, that should require some overforce on part of the attacker.

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There could be a time component as well:

Occupy & destroy: instant
Resettle: army must stay 1 turn extra in the region
Subjugate: army must stay 2 turns extra in the region

Most simple solution is to just "sleep" (not allow new orders such as move to another region) the involved unit in the attacking army for the turns they work on resettling/subjugating although this is a little bit wierd. And would all units be tied up or just a number corresponding to the size of the region being worked on? Otherwise you are punished by attacking with a very large army as more units would be tied up...

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"Subjugate" really means "post war occupation" and "nation building".  Of course, as you point out many games ignore this and gamers are accustomed too "I occupied this city" by simply winning a battle and moving into it.  There is nothing wrong with doing it that way, most games work that way.  But if you are viewing it from the perspective of "Represent Everything", then "subjugating" should be a far more force intensive and time consuming objective.  Time, as you point out, would absolutely also be another factor to include if you were wanting even more detail and "accuracy".

"Subjugate" is something that has actually only rarely actually happened in all of history.  Successfully, anyway.  Germany & Japan are actually two of the only examples in history of an ultimately successful "post war occupation & nation building".  So, in reality, it isn't even actually "a thing", it is an anomaly of history.  There are very few examples in all of history of one nation conquering and absorbing another into a happy new part of their nation or political alliance.

But, again, gamers are used to what you are saying and won't notice or say a thing if you choose to do it that way.  "Represent Everything" is more of a tool to view your design through than a law you must obey.

 

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