Most of this week went into revamping the diplomacy feature. This game needs to let players interact with each other in more nuanced ways than traditional 4X games to fully convert on the post-colonial promise, but I had very little in place. I put in research and projects that you can do to give you advantages in combat and also to resolve a campaign without resorting to violence. I want players to be able to influence other players without even using kind units. Wars can also generate uprisings of people both in the Civ that declares the war and in the Civ that is the subject of the war, so you can have wars that are you and another player joining forces against an uprising in that player’s territory, which is how I represent forcing a person to accept a compliment. You can see how the game sees even that as an act of violence, albeit a fundamentally different one than a colonizing war.
I still have to finish trade routes as well. I want these to be another fundamental way for players to interact with each other. I first want to play a little more with diplomacy as it now is though. I want to get a feel for what I have in place before I shake things up again with trade routes.
I also put in a sequence of early quests so that the player has some more direction for their first game. The game now shows you how to perform the early actions that you use to start the game. Additionally, I made a bunch of small fixes and playability updates. I also ran through the game a few times, but I didn’t get as much playtesting as I would have liked done this week and so I need to make that a focus for the next week.
There’s a conversation around Lord of the Flies going on right now and so I wanted to talk a little bit about the colonial context of the book. The British public schools long served as a conduit to jobs in the colonies, which was basically unskilled labor, but heavily glorified unskilled labor. British schoolboys were considered to be training for the task of bringing British civilization to the East and their schooling reflected that.
Lord of the Flies was a response to this idea of the naturally decent Britisher. It represented a disillusionment with the colonial project in tune with the changing times. It showed a Western audience that savagery wasn’t limited to the East.