A free fan-made modification for Age of Empires III

 
User avatar
Antigonius
Topic Author
Missionary
Missionary
Posts: 42
Joined: Fri Oct 07, 2016 10:49 am

Anti comes back from his long work on islands and starts to offer ideas and suggestions anew. Because I can.

Tue Jan 10, 2017 7:10 am

So after a long "vacation" to a place that has it's electricity supplied with generators and white sharks piss, I'm back in action, ready to do my job here....provided that people still care, of course.
During my little trip I was re-thinking my Liberia idea, in many ways thanks to Hoop Thrower that gave me an actually decent criticism and since I had nothing to do for like three month, I've made this little "design document", describing Liberia again.

Note, that this is an incomplete version of it and is more of a test of waters for me, so any feedback (even "I fucked your mum"-style) is welcome and any attention from the devs is appreciated.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/10mna98pnt1wq ... t.pdf?dl=0

The further development plans for this, should people like what they see here is divided into two stages: Update 2 and Update 3.
Update 2 will finish the bits left unfinished, like the Congress upgrades and unit stats, as well as any new ideas that you people might give me and I find interesting. For this, though, I will need more information as to how does Congress actually works - as for the current version of the game (i.e. with Peru) none of the Anglo races have this thing actually finished and working as stated in description, so if any dev wants to enlighten me on this - please do.
Update 3 will deal with Liberian Deck and Cards - full description and stats.

If everything goes as planned, this will be a very good year ^_^

PS. From now on I'll be posting these ideas in a PDF format. Easier to redact for me.
  • 11.01.2017: Changed "Gunboat", "Askari" and "Frontier Cavalry" names to more unique ones. Changed the Kanga Oath description.
Last edited by Antigonius on Wed Jan 11, 2017 5:14 pm, edited 2 times in total.
 
User avatar
DayoftheNinja
Impaled Corpse
Impaled Corpse
Posts: 71
Joined: Thu Aug 04, 2016 7:02 pm

Re: Anti comes back from his long work on islands and starts to offer ideas and suggestions anew. Because I can.

Wed Jan 11, 2017 4:11 am

I'll leave more specific criticism to others, but honestly the civ is pretty cool looking and the document is extremely thorough and well thought out. Welcome back, Antigonius!
Image
Yes, if it weren't for DOTN there would be no WoL.
    -Tahattus
 
User avatar
Memnon
Mooing Cow
Mooing Cow
Posts: 6
Joined: Sat Jan 07, 2017 5:09 pm

Re: Anti comes back from his long work on islands and starts to offer ideas and suggestions anew. Because I can.

Wed Jan 11, 2017 3:37 pm

Not that I have any say in the matter, but…

Overall this looks good. You obviously did very thorough research. I, personally, would love to play as Liberia. But here are some minor suggestions:

Denmark already has a gunboat, most likely a reference to their Gunboat War against the British during the Napoleonic Wars. It's generally best to avoid overlapping unit names, especially with unique units. Unless you have a very specific reason for choosing the word gunboat to describe this unique Liberian ship, I would suggest renaming to something similar like, for example, "cutter."
Similarly, the Askari. It is a standard Capital Age (?) unit for the African culture civs. Making it also an Imperial Age "unique" unit for one faction of an Anglo culture civ is weird to me. Especially since I associate Askari more with the ruling colonial power (in this case, the Americo-Liberians) than the natives.
A more major issue than just names: I like the idea of invisible weapons but some of the seem a little powerful. Especially Kanga Oath, which is basically which is one of the Serbians' unique abilities. It is rather degrading to the Serbians that one of their only two unique abilities (the other being pretty situational) is stolen by another civilization for use among multiple other abilities. Like the names, try to keep it unique. As for the others, maybe if they all had a minor downside? Such as it also slower movement, or making the unit take damage, like Trample?

And finally, as much as I hate to say it, is Liberia really militarily significant enough for the mod and its time period? It seems they didn't really develop militarily until the 20th century and the world wars, for the most part beyond the scope of this mod. Let me restate, though: these are great ideas, and it would be awesome to play as Liberia.
 
User avatar
Antigonius
Topic Author
Missionary
Missionary
Posts: 42
Joined: Fri Oct 07, 2016 10:49 am

Re: Anti comes back from his long work on islands and starts to offer ideas and suggestions anew. Because I can.

Wed Jan 11, 2017 4:25 pm

Memnon wrote:
Not that I have any say in the matter, but…

Overall this looks good. You obviously did very thorough research. I, personally, would love to play as Liberia. But here are some minor suggestions:

Denmark already has a gunboat, most likely a reference to their Gunboat War against the British during the Napoleonic Wars. It's generally best to avoid overlapping unit names, especially with unique units. Unless you have a very specific reason for choosing the word gunboat to describe this unique Liberian ship, I would suggest renaming to something similar like, for example, "cutter."
Similarly, the Askari. It is a standard Capital Age (?) unit for the African culture civs. Making it also an Imperial Age "unique" unit for one faction of an Anglo culture civ is weird to me. Especially since I associate Askari more with the ruling colonial power (in this case, the Americo-Liberians) than the natives.
A more major issue than just names: I like the idea of invisible weapons but some of the seem a little powerful. Especially Kanga Oath, which is basically which is one of the Serbians' unique abilities. It is rather degrading to the Serbians that one of their only two unique abilities (the other being pretty situational) is stolen by another civilization for use among multiple other abilities. Like the names, try to keep it unique. As for the others, maybe if they all had a minor downside? Such as it also slower movement, or making the unit take damage, like Trample?

And finally, as much as I hate to say it, is Liberia really militarily significant enough for the mod and its time period? It seems they didn't really develop militarily until the 20th century and the world wars, for the most part beyond the scope of this mod. Let me restate, though: these are great ideas, and it would be awesome to play as Liberia.

Don't worry - any suggestion or idea is welcome, the devs just have to say: should I continue developing this or am I just wasting everyone's time.

Thanks for the naming ideas, BTW - never knew that "cutter" even existed ^_^
As I said before all of this is still in development - as I gather more and more books and whatall some names will change, as well as what they do or not.

As for invisible weapons - they should look powerful, because outside of cards, political upgrades and arsenal they do not have anything upping their HP and attack (hence Imperial only in name). In gameplay-terms this means that while some factions will stroll around with 1500 HP cannons and what not, Liberians in the Imperial Age will be lucky to have 300HP units. Invisible weapons are designed to counteract this.
Kanga Oath...hm...I have a idea as to how it should work but I have to confirm something...

And as for the significance, well, this is entirely subjective, but I'll try to explain my POV. Liberia and Ethiopia were the only two African nations that managed to maintain their independence during the turbulent Scramble for Africa - this alone is a pretty impressive feat, and while someone might say that if not for USA, the Brits and French would decimate them, I will say that if it weren't for Russians, Ethiopia would be an Italian-British colony to this very day.

Liberia is also the only actual, legit USA colony, created and supplied by many famous people, including Lincoln himself. Their story is a story of struggle, hardship and massive amounts of colorism from Americo-Liberians (who were mostly ex-slaves from Southern States or Caribs) towards Native Africans. Did you know that until the first civil war there the country was literally ruled by a Masonic Lodge? And yet no one talks about them besides the civil wars.

IMO they share the same fate as Paraguay or Mapuche, in that these nations have a very awesome history and cultures, that are (for the most part) completely unknown to all but the most hardcore history enthusiasts, due to limited amount of stuff available about them online or in English. Just like with them there are thousands of books about Liberia and the culture of their people, yet there is only like a solid 4% of them available online, if available at all outside of national libraries in USA. Not even Ebay and Amazon had what I wanted, which I consider to be a damn shame.

Concluding all of this, I believe that Liberia is a nation that deserves to be represented as a faction in the WoL mod not only because of their unique gameplay style and history, but also because of the fact how little people actually know about it. Having them as a playable faction will certainly gain at least some level of attention from both new and old players, just out of sheer "WTH is this shit?". This will only add to the popularity of the mod.

But than again - if the devs will greenlight it, I will continue to develop this, until they have a full design document on their hands. I can't code for shit, but that's the very least I can do. If not, then alas, just my bad luck, I suppose.
 
User avatar
Christos
Horse Grenadier
Horse Grenadier
Posts: 509
Joined: Mon Aug 01, 2016 8:12 pm
Location: Lesbos, Greece

Re: Anti comes back from his long work on islands and starts to offer ideas and suggestions anew. Because I can.

Sat Jan 14, 2017 5:15 pm

I must say you have given this lots of thought, but still, the outcome isn't really convincing. Also, I am not a huge fan of Liberia, but I am not sure this really counts, if you come up with a good outline. Still, there are much more "important" civs still missing.
Image
 
User avatar
Hoop Thrower
Waler Horse
Waler Horse
Posts: 307
Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2016 2:39 am
Location: Kingdom of Araucania & Patagonia

Re: Anti comes back from his long work on islands and starts to offer ideas and suggestions anew. Because I can.

Sat Jan 14, 2017 7:34 pm

OK. Let's give a serious and thorough answer:

You really made a through and excellent analysis of the relevance of this civilization and a rundown of its history during the period, I've never seen someone who'd gone above and beyond like you when presenting a civilization, so kudos to you.

That said... yeah, there's nothing much to work with this civilization.

The first bonus is not really a bonus? All civilizations within anglo culture get Mills and Plantations, so I don't really know what you're going for here.
I don't really like the idea that they upgrade automatically... yet don't upgrade. Maybe you could explain better the invisible weapons? They basically have many activated abilities?

Meeting Place is a nobel idea, but I somehow feel like it'd end up weaking both strategies by merging them in a single building,as both faith and espionage have a bunch of specialized technology, I'm not sure how'll you deal with that.

The uniques are.... good I guess (?), I see you dealt with the repeated unique names, they are not amazing, but they'll do.

It's very weird to have a single cavalry option on the Stable, especially until that late, I fear that may leave an open weakness in your civ which, granted, ain't all that bad necessarily.

The main issue I have with this civilizaion is that it looks like a vanilla Anglo civ, it doesn't have any real special characteristic that makes them stand out or play differently, other than not having upgrades. I'm not feeling like a civilization without unit upgrades would perform well nor would it attract attention, and while the special abilities you gave them are gimmicky, I'm not really seeing either it as a compensation for the loss in unit combat nor something that really stands out from regular Anglo politician upgrades.

So the civ basically has nothing unique, which is the main fault here.

Very well researched though, I'm pretty sure that if you had gone with something more inspired gameplay-wise this would had been easily the best  civ suggestion ever done.
Image
 
User avatar
Jutlander
Mountie
Mountie
Posts: 435
Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2016 10:57 am

Re: Anti comes back from his long work on islands and starts to offer ideas and suggestions anew. Because I can.

Sat Jan 14, 2017 11:33 pm

I have to add that, even with that, there's really not much that screams Liberia, not even Africa.
The invisible weapons just look like a bunch of OP bonuses mixed together, that's no good.
But again, I can't deny the research was great, you really are good at it.
Image
 
User avatar
Antigonius
Topic Author
Missionary
Missionary
Posts: 42
Joined: Fri Oct 07, 2016 10:49 am

Re: Anti comes back from his long work on islands and starts to offer ideas and suggestions anew. Because I can.

Mon Jan 16, 2017 12:52 am

Thanks guys, this means a lot to me!
As I said before - this is still not the complete version and this may change in the further Updates.
One thing that I must stress, though - I'm not trying to say "THIS IS MY FACTION,MAKE IT FUCKING NOW!!!!1111". Let's be real here - working on Liberia as an actual civ will take not only just coding stuff, there's also creating new textures (simply because everyone must be black), as well as doing actual graphic design - there are few paintings of Liberian politicians and most of them will have to be ordered. This will take time, money and effort to do.

What I'm doing here is simply trying to provide you with the best game design document I can write, so that when you will finish most of what you want, you may have a ready template for a new faction. Every single contribution, criticism and advices you do, dev or not, WILL BE HEARD.

The Update 2 will mostly deal with everything I left unfinished and/or vague, namely prises, stats of the units and polishing new mechanics, as well as Congress - I think now I have a basic grasp of how it should work. The Update will be ready...somewhere till spring, mostly because I downloaded a book about tribes of Liberian Hinterlands - it will take me time to analyse it.

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest