We have touched on the discussion of multi-tile cities recently:
For those of you not up on the discussion, a brief recap:
The current city construction system
In Elemental: War of Magic, players built their improvements directly on the map. This was a pretty fun and cool feature and exists in the same way in Elemental: Fallen Enchantress Beta 2 (0.86).
There are, however, some problems with the system:
(1) It encourages players to create snaking cities that look ridiculous, are gamey, and easily exploitable.
(2) It results in the maps, especially late game, feeling very urban as you have many cities that are often using 20+ tiles of space on the map.
(3) They affect performance considerably late game (those beautiful, intricate buildings have to be drawn).
(4) They limit our game design possibilities since we are constantly reminded that we need to keep the # of city improvements to a minimum lest the map get filled with buildings even though often times, the design calls for a city improvement to be available.
A high level city might appear like this:
(this assumes the player didn’t “snake” the city out in some weird shape so this is somewhat close to an ideal).
As a result, the plan was in Beta 4 (Summer 2012) to migrate to a different system.
The new city construction system design
In this system, each faction would get their own city hub tile that would change based on city level. In addition, cities would specialize (that will be a separate dev journal) and based on that specialization, a different sub-tile would be be added to the city that would indicate, at a glance, what level it was (higher level cities would have more subtiles).
External improvements, like shards, crystals, etc. would be unaffected and if adjacent would become absorbed in the city.
So a level 5 city might look something like this:
(a level 1 city would just have the city hub)
When players clicked on the details button for their city, a new screen would come up and show all their built improvements in all their glory. Players could zoom around, rotate, and see the fully fleshed out city along with all the stats and other information. But this would be a separate screen ala Civilization rather than on the main map.
Now, since this has begun being discussed, we’ve heard a lot of different views on this. Since this is still months from being made available in a public beta, we very much want to hear from you since most of you, like us, have been on the Elemental journey for a long time now and have a vested interest in the game’s ultimate success.
The question before you is, what are your thoughts on this?