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Level 17 Extraplanar gamer
Alignment: True neutral
Posted on January 4, 2014 at 12:14 am

Notifications for beta testers have been sent out, so check your inboxes! We apologize to everyone who wasn't selected, but unfortunately we could only include a small percentage of the applicants in the first round. However, once we get a better idea of how it's going, and we're sure we can keep up with the feedback, we do plan to expand the beta significantly. So stay tuned to the web, Facebook or Twitter for more news and, if you haven't applied yet, you can still get into later rounds so check out the original post for more info on applying.

And if you did apply, but did not get an e-mail from us, drop me another note in-case someone's spam filter picked it up and we'll get it sorted out.

Level 7 Human gamer
Alignment: Lawful
Posted on January 4, 2014 at 12:56 am

Just one quick question. Will there be a new sub forum for anything Rome related or will we just be posting in Support/Hegemony?

Level 17 Extraplanar gamer
Alignment: True neutral
Posted on January 4, 2014 at 2:28 am

I think the plan is just to use the regular Hegemony forum since it's otherwise not too busy these days and we're not worried about keeping things secret.

Level 7 Human gamer
Alignment: Lawful
Posted on January 5, 2014 at 6:18 am

Oh another gameplay related question.

Grain supply. Will it be static as per Gold or dynamic? Plenty of documented occasions where things like slave uprisings, natural disasters or even greedy bastards caused huge shortages throughout the Roman world. Can we expect to have to deal with things of this nature? Or is keeping that logistical aspect 'simple' the name of the game?

Level 17 Extraplanar gamer
Alignment: True neutral
Posted on January 6, 2014 at 6:08 pm

At present, we don't have a famine mechanic in the game since we've been focused on recreating the Gallic Wars specifically and that wasn't really a problem in that period. However, with the new scripting system and upgrade mechanics, it would be possible to mod the game to randomly debuff farm production every year to recreate crop shortages.

Right now the options in the sandbox are relatively minimal, but we do hope to expand those based on what ideas are most popular with the community so we'll keep this in mind.

Level 7 Human gamer
Alignment: Lawful
Posted on January 6, 2014 at 7:24 pm

I dunno, Caesars delay in his pursuit of the Helvetii to 'encourage' the Aedui and other allied Gallic tribes to pay up the promised grain was almost a pretty huge game changer. Though after having said that out loud, it was near enough an isolated incident.

Never mind me :)

Level 17 Extraplanar gamer
Alignment: True neutral
Posted on January 7, 2014 at 12:17 am

I guess I should clarify a little, while we don't have generalized mechanic to create random crop shortages, many events in the campaign were decided by supply issues and we've tried to recreate those as best we can.

Using the example you mentioned, Caesar did rely on the Aedui for food at the beginning of the campaign and you'll also be doing that in chapter 1 - the site of the first major battle outside Bibracte was largely chosen because it was a major supply center that could support Caesar's forces.

Also, when Caesar's legions were ambushed and defeated by the Belgae near the end of the campaign, this was at least in part because Caesar had spread out his forces due to local supply shortages and we will be covering the fallout from those events in chapter 4.

Level 7 Human gamer
Alignment: Lawful
Posted on January 7, 2014 at 7:36 am

Very nice. I should have expected as much but even so glad to hear we are going to be facing the same sort of adversity during the campaign.

One thing about Gold was that once you reached a certain number of major farm towns and got your armies logistics levelled up, it became pretty much impossible to run out of food.

Edit: Huh, reading back previous post it sounds kind of dickish, wasn't meant that way, sorry.

Level 17 Extraplanar gamer
Alignment: True neutral
Posted on January 7, 2014 at 3:44 pm

One thing about Gold was that once you reached a certain number of major farm towns and got your armies logistics levelled up, it became pretty much impossible to run out of food.

While I won't say we have it perfect yet, we've been working hard on improving the resource balance for Rome. For gold, a lot of the rules came into place after the map was already designed for the original Philip game and so it was difficult to balance some things very closely. However, in Rome we left a lot of the resource placement to the end so we had a better idea of the play balance before we laid everything out (which is why you'll still find placeholder farms once the beta starts)

A couple other things we've changed for Rome to help the food balance:
- Units no longer consume less food when they go inside cities or camps which makes it much easier to predict your total consumption vs production levels
- Units have a a limited number of officer slots so ideally you won't be able to improve everyone's consumption
- Units no longer need to carry their own food while inside a city/camp's supply radius so less food is wasted when units are defending their cities

Edit: Huh, reading back previous post it sounds kind of dickish, wasn't meant that way, sorry.

No worries, I didn't take it that way :) We understand we won't be able to meet everybody's wish list but we always appreciate the feedback because even if we can't work an idea in now it might be useful down the road.

Level 7 Human gamer
Alignment: Lawful
Posted on January 7, 2014 at 5:02 pm

Some interesting changes to be sure. I presume camping and foraging will still work as it does in Gold? That was a life saver when in the northern areas and any others with a long winding valley (I hated having to rely on workers/slaves).

- Units no longer need to carry their own food while inside a city/camp's supply radius so less food is wasted when units are defending their cities

This bit though, how do you mean? In Gold it seems like units defending a city will 'pull' a minimum amount and then get constant top ups as long as they stay within range so consuming the food in the city. Isn't this the same thing? Or is that minimum amount going to be removed and the morale degradation won't apply in the supply zone for zero food?

Level 7 Human gamer
Alignment: Lawful good
Location: German-speaking part of Europe
Posted on January 7, 2014 at 6:42 pm

You had two choices available: Filling up the food supply a unit was carrying a) when exiting the city/fort or b) when exiting supply radius. While the first could drain your whole food supply easily when moving several regiments out of a city, the latter could do the same if you only had, say, a single 15/week food supply line left unblocked by your enemies while your garrison eats 12 or 14 per week and you have nearly none left -> as soon as somebody exits town, the defender's units are useless due to 0 food stockpiled.

Level 17 Extraplanar gamer
Alignment: True neutral
Posted on January 7, 2014 at 8:53 pm

GiftGrun is correct. Near the end of the gold beta we added an option in the config to only fill a unit's supply when they exited the supply radius but we didn't make this the default because we were never able to test it thoroughly.

However, in Rome we're putting more emphasis on establishing supply areas with camps and forts in order to continually support your army rather than just using it to refill before heading back into the field. So units in Rome can operate fine without any of their own supplies as long as they're in a supplied area.

I presume camping and foraging will still work as it does in Gold? That was a life saver when in the northern areas and any others with a long winding valley (I hated having to rely on workers/slaves).

Camping and foraging have actually changed quite a bit in Rome:

- Since you can now construct camps as buildings anywhere in the field there wasn't any need to have a separate camping mode for units. The idea now is that you build a camp, connect it back to your territory via supply lines and you units will automatically resupply from the camp like they would a city or fort in gold.

- Foraging is also handled a little differently. Units no longer resupply automatically from farms like they did in gold, but you can instead instruct units to 'Scavenge' from a farm which will collect food while also damaging the building as it would be during a raid.

And as a side note: workers and slaves no longer carry food in Rome. They are strictly used to generate resources in mines, farms, logging camps, etc.

Level 7 Human gamer
Alignment: Lawful
Posted on January 7, 2014 at 9:20 pm

I think I didn't explain what I was trying to say well enough as both Gift and yourself seem to have misunderstood me.

I am asking what the real difference is between the two games in terms of this particular mechanic. I know about the option to change supply behaviour as I use when leaving supply range, I dislike the idea of a sallying unit that will most likely be defeated taking a hundred units of food the instant it exits.

Let's see if I can get it right this time.

Say I have the Companion Cavalry sitting just outside a city but within supply range. They will eat their supplies down to say 15-20 units left, at which point it never drops lower so to me this seems as though a unit maintains a minimum number at all times and upon reaching that number will instead constantly draw it's consumed food from whatever supply radius it is in.

What you said about the changes is that a Cohort will basically do the same thing in the same supply radius but as I understand it, unlike Gold they won't maintain that minimum 15-20 units of supply at all times and will instead just be constantly supplied from the city/camp (having zero supplies on the unit itself) but without the morale penalty of having zero supply. I was trying to ask if that was the case or if in fact it is something far more in depth?

Level 7 Human gamer
Alignment: Lawful good
Location: German-speaking part of Europe
Posted on January 7, 2014 at 9:37 pm

What you said about the changes is that a Cohort will basically do the same thing in the same supply radius but as I understand it, unlike Gold they won't maintain that minimum 15-20 units of supply at all times and will instead just be constantly supplied from the city/camp (having zero supplies on the unit itself) but without the morale penalty of having zero supply. I was trying to ask if that was the case or if in fact it is something far more in depth?

Yeah, and as I understood it, this is the case in Rome, and the reason for it is that your forces do not really need these 15-20 food supplies, but the city does sometimes, so it is better and also logical to not fill their food supply within supply range (that's what I wanted to make clear in my last post).

Level 7 Human gamer
Alignment: Lawful
Posted on January 7, 2014 at 9:38 pm

What you said about the changes is that a Cohort will basically do the same thing in the same supply radius but as I understand it, unlike Gold they won't maintain that minimum 15-20 units of supply at all times and will instead just be constantly supplied from the city/camp (having zero supplies on the unit itself) but without the morale penalty of having zero supply. I was trying to ask if that was the case or if in fact it is something far more in depth?

Yeah, and as I understood it, this is the case in Rome, and the reason for it is that your forces do not really need these 15-20 food supplies, but the city does sometimes, so it is better and also logical to not fill their food supply within supply range (that's what I wanted to make clear in my last post).


Ok cool let's hope it is that then. Would be nice to have a unit defending the one ford at a city and not have that unit have an impact of the cities ability to move supplies where they are needed.

Level 17 Extraplanar gamer
Alignment: True neutral
Posted on January 7, 2014 at 10:00 pm

I think we're all on the same page now. As you can see in the shot below, the unit has zero food on them, but the ++fish icon above them means that they are being supplied since they are within the yellow resupply area of the city (which you can see near the top of the screen). In the unit's trade tab you can also see how much the unit is consuming and where it's food is coming from.

Level 7 Human gamer
Alignment: Lawful
Posted on January 7, 2014 at 10:08 pm

That answers perfectly, thank you Rob. Good to see supply zones are much larger now also.