GalCiv IV: Supernova Dev Journal #19 - Culture is your Civilization's Character

Published on Wednesday, May 24, 2023 By Brad Wardell In GalCiv IV Dev Journals

GalCiv IV: Supernova Dev Journal #19 - Culture is your Civilization's Character

The feedback we got from Beta 1 of GalCiv IV: Supernova was that the Cultural Progression tree was too big and too “soft”. Soft meaning the choices didn’t have meaningful consequences. We read all the feedback and used it to rethink the concept of culture in a 4X game. Here’s what we’ve come up with.

Culture vs. Influence

Influence affects how far your borders go from your planet. Culture is the input that comes in that is transformed into influence.

So in this example, Mars has a cultural significance of 1 which goes to its core world Earth.

Then influence takes that Cultural Input and turns it into influence growth per month which then goes to the planet’s bank of influence which becomes the radius (in tiles) that influence flows from the planet.

Now, what we want to have happen is that this culture coming int goes towards how many culture points in you generate per turn. In the current build, you just get 1 per turn. So it’s still way too convoluted and messy for our liking.

So to recap:

  • Culture is the raw resource.

  • Influence is one of the byproducts of culture.

  • We want “Culture points” to also be derived by how much culture you have coming in.

Feel free to leave comments on how you think this should be improved. We have our ideas but I’d like to hear yours.

Cultural Progression

So then your culture should also feed into your cultural progression where the cost of a given cultural trait will increase the further in you go (as well as overall).

If this were an RPG, I’d say your Cultural Progression would be like your character and the traits unlocking new powers. That’s essentially the goal we have anyway.

So the idea then would be to have a Cultural Level for your civilization which would use this formula:

Where N and B are “magic numbers” and X is the next level and Y is the total number of points you need to go up a level. If you’re a game designer, save that formula, it’s what we all use for leveling up costs.

In our case, it would be the base cost of another unlock with each category having discounts based on how much awareness you have generated in that category based on your decisions in the game.

The long-term plan is for players to have a “Level” for each category that we can key new events off of.


Galactic Civilizations IV: Supernova Dev Journals