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About BobaFrac

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  1. I think about the religion mechanic in Sid Meier's Colonization often. There isn't much to it: building churches and allocating preachers to them produces crosses. Crosses lure immigrants from the religious oppression of Europe to the freedom of your new world colony. First seeing it as a young teen in 1994, it made no sense to me. Learning more deeply about the history of immigration to the colonies later lit the lightbulb for me: so that's what they were modeling! It is a limited representation but fit for purpose within the game. The discussion of the religious faction in Terra Invicta, and the differences in goals between real-world religions, brought to mind the perennial object of discussion: Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri. The factions are working within the same mechanics but still communicate a different set of priorities, a different ethos, with their bonuses and limitations on the Social Engineering grid. It captures some of that different outlook on the world that probably should be included in a religion model. At least in the main game, I never played much Alien Crossfire. Modeling a religion as a sort of orthogonal authority, like the Papacy in the Euro-centric Paradox games, is interesting in a strategy game since it introduces another axis of power to struggle along. But, this probably only really captures the spirit of Catholic religion, given the central authority. I remember much positive discussion of the different saints and shrines in Darklands, but never played it myself.
  2. Both Six Ages and King of Dragon Pass are 30% off on the Apple App Store. At least in the US, maybe elsewhere. For North America's Labour Day: I picked up both based on the strength of the recommendations from the panel.
  3. I recently went back to listen to all of the Space 4X episodes I could find. I was trying to understand what the community thinking was on Endless Space 2 vs Stellaris vs Master of Orion: Conquer the Stars (2016). In all the dicussions, Master of Orion (1993) and Master of Orion 2 of course come up a lot. And came up again here. From my memory of the two, and this is touched on a bit in this episode, many of the "problems" that have carried forward from MoO and MoO2 are really from the second installment and didn't exist in the first. A few of the points of criticism: Tech tree becomes too predictable: In the original MoO the techs available in each game for each player are somewhat randomized. And, when each research is completed you have to choose from a list of possible targets. Even the Psilons, so overpowered in MoO2, can't have every tech because they will fall behind if they try to research everything. Their advantage allows them to choose from more possible techs. This structure mixes games up a bit. "The one where no one had shields" is one I remember clearly. It worked better with smaller games tho, since more players meant more chances that any given tech would be in the game. Star lanes make for boring terrain: In MoO higher tech levels eventually (in some games, because of the tech shuffle described above) led to unlimited range, so that movement wasn't constrained by Star lanes. This meant you could attack deep in to enemy territory. Hyperspace communications allowed you to recall fleets in transit. I thought this turned the structure of the engagment more towards naval tactics than trench or holding territory. I am not an expert on real-world tactics though. The one thing I remember still missing was the ability to intercept a fleet in transit. That isn't something in many space games at all, but is important in naval strategy (I think?). Too many ships in tactical battles: MoO amassed all ships of a class in to one "chit" that was moved around the tactical field. It isn't "realistic" but it was a lot of fun! I played many, many hours of MoO and was very much looking forward to MoO2. But because of the points now widely agreed to be problems, I never got that far in to MoO2.
  4. Oxygen Not Included

    After Nick's description on Idle Thumbs, I started following ONI. I told myself I'd wait to buy it until it was out of early access. I broke down in early January after seeing the Quick Look on Giant Bomb. The hours melt away. I go in to each session with a goal -- some improvement to make or new building to try -- but after that I'll just watch the little dupes run around about their business. Actually I wish I could stay a little more focused, but it is a lot of fun to watch all the systems at work. Consensus seems to be that growth should be avoided. I grabbed the first 14 dupes as soon as they were available. My colony has lurched from one near system collapse to the next, but it's surviving. Done to 12 dupes and mostly stable. I need to get in to oil or refined metal next, which will no doubt precipitate several more crises. Anyone else playing around with this?
  5. Episode 413: Myth

    I always remember a 1v1v1 multi-player match I played with one of my friends. We genuinely competed with each other, we weren't entrapping a third person. But in one match the third went after me right off, with their army of Thrall, Wights and Soulless. It was soon after release and this person hadn't figured out the units yet. At one point I was typing "No, don't run away from archers with soulless, you won't be able to get away!" in to chat. I kited them as they describe in the podcast and ended up killing them all without a single casualty. After, my friend immediately wiped the floor with me. Because, although I hadn't taken any casualties, my troops were all wounded, and strung along the wrong line of engagement. I remember it so vividly because it drove home to me that this was some weird, new game that we were all figuring out together. Not another Warcraft. To the points they raise about the title 'Myth', I also remember clearly wondering if the ancient heroes who return as villains were every truly good. Myths are written by the victors, alongside histories?
  6. Rimworld

    I was inspired to try Rimworld by Chris's stream. My first colony was Heartbreak Hamlet. Two of the original crash survivors were engaged, but their relationship didn't survive the stresses of the initial set up. And, naturally, they wanted a daily reminder thanks to their colony's name. Shortly after I started, I was radioed by a wanderer. "Jenkins" joined our colony after we fought off the primitive raiders on his tail. Jenkins didn't have many skills to take him out of the colony and his bad back kept him puttering around the main buildings. He was good at training and taming animals. A squirrel eventually wandered in to the colony -- right in to a bedroom -- so Jenkins went to work taming him. The squirrel joined the colony and the two bonded. Jenkins named his new squirrel friend "Mackintosh." Heartbreak Hamlet was on a very thin island far out in the tropical sea of its rimworld. Its location meant the colony had traded year-round plant growth for frequent dry lightning storms. Despite his bad back, Jenkins was frequently pressed in to fighting fires with the rest of the colonists. As ever, Mackintosh accompanied his friend and master even joining in to fight fires. Unfortunately, on one occasion Mackintosh's erratic movements led him in to the flames and he lost a paw. Now Jenkins and Mackintosh moved at about the same speed. Jenkins's time on the rimworld had slowly taught him how to wield a rifle. So, he found himself in the squad to take down a rampaging rhinoceros that fell on the colony. And Mackintosh was by his side. This time, Mackintosh used his quick, decisive movements to distract the rhino while Jenkins crawled away after being knocked down. Jenkins and two other colonists surrounded the dueling squirrel and rhinoceros, finally putting enough bullets on target to end the solo stampede. The match had taken a toll on Mackintosh. While standing in for Jenkins and rescuing the colony, he lost a leg and a second paw. Mackintosh was bed-ridden. His days were limited to sitting on his Muffalo leather animal bed and being fed by Jenkins and his co-colonists. The bond between Jenkins and Mackintosh endured, so Mackintosh was always concerned when Jenkins was out in the field. He would try to follow but instead fall out of his bed, requiring a colonist to come along and "rescue" him back on to cushiony Muffalo leather. Usually, if he was around, Jenkins would do the rescuing. When Jenkins was bed-ridden with an infection and gunshot wounds after a combined raid and forest fire, their bond broke them both. Mackintosh, concerned for Jenkins two doors down in medical, tried to get out of his bed to visit his master. Jenkins, awoken by Mackintosh's cries from down the hall rose from bed. His condition was too severe and before leaving his room he succumbed, collapsed to the floor, and died. Mackintosh, immediately sensing his master's passing went mad with grief! No matter how often he was returned to his bed he would immediately fall out again... clawing his way out of bed... pulling with his few remaining rhino-killing claws down the hall for one final visit with Jenkins. He didn't make it. The heartbroken co-founder of Heartbreak Hamlet slaughtered him. Mackintosh didn't have much left to live for.
  7. Episode 364: Pet Peeves

    I think they refer to "Vicky 2" at some point, but in context it seems like it is not a paradox game. Are they referring to Paradox's Victoria 2? Or something else?