A trip through the fantasy worlds I enjoy

 

We are hard at work creating the next Galactic Civilizations III beta and we will have a lot of fun things for you to play with. But I wanted to talk about one of my favorites, Custom Races.

First off there are 2 ways to create custom races. First you can add them as a mod (but more about that in a future post). For this post I wanted to talk about everything you can do in the in game tool to create a wide variety of unique, interesting and weird species to populate your universes.

First off you will notice that we have a new choose civilization window. The last one did a really good job of allowing you to select 1 of the 8 base factions, but we wanted space for more, so that players would feel free to create their own and wouldn’t have to scroll to get to them. Don’t mind the brown and gold UI colors, I was playing as my custom faction, the Marauders, and those are their UI colors.

You may notice that the Iconian and the Thalan are enabled now, and I’ve created 5 new customer factions, the Cult of Cinder, the Jade Council, the Marauders, the Quantum Core and the Hive.

Creating a new faction is pretty easy, click create custom race and you have a lot of options to choose from. The above is where I set the name, picked the logo and filled in some detail. You can also see a floating “FG Image” button that appears to have escaped from the window it belongs on.

This is my favorite window. Our artists are really amazing and I love this model in particular. Creating the way he looks involves selecting a character image and a background image. These can be animated binks or still images and you can mix and match them if you want to use this guy but put in science lab, the Drengin war room or an organic chamber that looks like he’s flying around inside someone spleen.

 

This is where the magic happens. I want my Maurders to be restless pirates so they get an approval penalty (Content -2), but they are very effective at both invading and defending planets (Brutal +2 and Courageous +2) as well as having a high range (Adventuresome +2) and speed (Fast +2) so they can get into trouble. I also made all the other factions dislike them a bit (Likeable -1). They aren’t as bad as being a neighbor with the Yor, but they aren’t much better.

As for abilities I gave them Starfaring so they are immune to Nebula effects and they get their first Starbase module for free and Prolific so they get double the population provided by colony ships when they found a colony (they must throw a heck of a party when they land).

Personality may not mean tons when you are playing them, but it means everything when the AI is playing them. Character traits is used by the AI to evaluate a wide range of decisions, from which way to vote on a UP proposal to when and if it should trade or declare war. Priorities are used to make decisions about which Tech to research or Improvement to build.

This way even if two races have similar stats they can be played by the AI very differently.

Which brings us to one of the best reasons to create custom factions. Even if you don’t play as them it’s a great way to fill your universe with opponents to defeat and to make sure every game of Galactic Civilizations III is a new experience.

Next up: Modding http://forums.galciv3.com/461766/page/1/


Comments (Page 2)
on Feb 20, 2015

Very cool Derek! 

 

Thank you for your hard work. All of you in that office are very much appreciated!

 

 

Rhonin, thanks. Derek answered the question. I just wanted to know if I  wanted 'extra' factions AND minors, that I would not have to create them. I am happy to do so but wanted to know if I wanted to just set up a game with 10 factions and 15 minors and set other parameters and go if that was possible. 

 

I believe Derek answered it.

 

Thanks to both of you.

on Feb 20, 2015

So these are 'custom' factions which is super awesome!

 

Can we create custom minors or have many many minors? 

on Feb 20, 2015

Derek Paxton

probably always a modding thing. We have an excel editor that writes out all the XML for us that we are happy to share. One of the nice parts of this is that if someone makes a few cool tech trees they can share them and every can place them as mods and then allow their custom factions to use them.

very cool, I would love to see that excel file.  With that said, I agree that what can be done with the xml's is awesome (even compared to GalCivII's xml's).

on Feb 20, 2015

Larsenex

So these are 'custom' factions which is super awesome!

Can we create custom minors or have many many minors? 

I see what you are saying. No, there won't be an ingame tool to create minor factions. It wouldn't be a big deal to add that to the custom faction options since being a minor faction is only the change of one field in XML, but it may be kind of messy in the UI (since we don't display minors on these screens). All fixable problems if we decide to add it down the road. But as it is currently, if you want to create a ton of new minor factions, besides the ones provided with the game, you should add them as a mod (ie: dump the xml in your mod directory).

 

on Feb 20, 2015

Very nice! Creating new factions with custom AI settings without modding is great.

on Feb 20, 2015

So we can import pictures for our faction leaders? What about importing the background image?

I think now I can totally create my space Roman Empire!

on Feb 20, 2015

What are the Race logo and picture requierments.

on Feb 20, 2015

So glad I bought into this beta.. now for an emblem for those of us that didn't hear about the founder thing.. maybe it can be bronze? 

 

I yield the superior metal type to the founders.

on Feb 20, 2015

I am not a fan of mods in general (I'm more of a purist), however . . . holy crap do the possibilities seem endless for modding GalCiv3! I can't wait to see all of my favorite sci-fi IPs sneak their way into this game!

on Feb 20, 2015

It would be cool to use custom portraits in multiplayer games.

 

Great work!

on Feb 21, 2015

Derek Paxton

 

Techs will probably always a modding thing. We have an excel editor that writes out all the XML for us that we are happy to share. One of the nice parts of this is that if someone makes a few cool tech trees they can share them and every can place them as mods and then allow their custom factions to use them.

But make no mistake, there is a huge amount of things that can be modified in XML, and if you really want to make something unique and special that's where you will want to go (and then share what you have created so other people can play with it too). No in game editor in the world is going to give you the power of being able to go edit the files directly. You guys are right that XML isn't inherently balanced, but forcing balance keeps you from doing really interesting things.

 

 

One concern that I have that I have yet to see specifically acknowledged is that when making GC2 custom races is that tech trees were not considered "unique" when using another race's tech tree.

 

What I mean was that there were hierarchies of buildings that could be built roughly:

 

  1. Default - unlimited number everywhere (ie factories, labs)
  2. 1 per planet - (starports, etc)
  3. 1 per civilization - (economic capital, etc)
  4. super project - only one allowed in game, but each race has their own. (torian transport tubes, etc)
  5. galactic achievements - only one allowed in game, each race competes with other races for it (restaurant of eternity, eyes of univ, etc)

The issue I have is with "super projects" where they were intended to be "1 per civilization" but functionally become "galactic achievements" when a tech tree is being used by 2 or more civs (if my custom race is using the Torian tech tree, we are competing to build the first 'transport tubes').  The super-projects were not meant to be competitive in this way, and a lot of the races stats and tech trees were designed with the assumption that certain races would have them.

 

I haven't noticed if super projects were eliminated entirely from GC3, but it would be REALLY nice if each race would be treated as "unique" for the purposes of super projects, especially if the plan is for there to be a whole lot more custom races.

 

cheers, & nice post Derek.

 

-tid242

 

update: these were race-specific galactic achievements, not "super projects" my bad on terminology.  thanks BuckGodot

on Feb 21, 2015

Super Projects were one per civilization, not one per game.  Yes, some races had Galactic Achievements that were unique to them.  But they weren't technically Super Projects like the Hyperion Shrinker and whatnot.

Mind, the concern about racial Galactic Achievements is a good one.  But calling them Super Projects might lead to some confusion.

on Feb 21, 2015

BuckGodot

Super Projects were one per civilization, not one per game.  Yes, some races had Galactic Achievements that were unique to them.  But they weren't technically Super Projects like the Hyperion Shrinker and whatnot.

Mind, the concern about racial Galactic Achievements is a good one.  But calling them Super Projects might lead to some confusion.

 

thanks, yea my bad on not remembering the specifics, I just remembered the overall issue being annoying.  thanks for pointing that out.

 

cheers

on Feb 24, 2015

I'm hoping the AI will be toned down some even on "beginner" setting they are racking up 150-300k power in only 100 turns. 40+ planets and 100-200 ships each race!

I've tried so many tactics to at least make the game enjoyable but I have found none that work. Even cranking out ships like a can factory I still do not get close. 

Has anyone else seen this as a problem with the AI on beginner setting?

on Feb 25, 2015

A fee things i was just wondering. Are there going to be penalties,  if so the custom races should.probsbly have them too. I noticed we couldn't get abilities like the krynn, korath, torian,  or yor had. Having a super breeder of the krynn eould be nice. Im talking about customising not modding. At least as far as opponents it would have been nice to be able to make a dreadblord style opponent. It would also have the same chance to start out with the same technologies ie thalans.

 i like the idea of being able to pick diffetent tech paths on a custom tech tree. Under customisation not modfing. You would have all the generic and specialised tech paths to choose from. First you would have to select the minimum tech paths like farming, morale, economics,  weapons,  defenses,  starbases,  logistics,  terraforming, and hulls or something like that,  then youwould select other tech trees. 

Something i didnt like about the in game editor was it didn't have a way to add premade techs, and buildings to import to other races. 

I like the idea of having multiple leaders for each race, but can't we devide up the abilities between races, and leaders.