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Grand Strategy Axioms|Making Culture Concrete: What is culture, why is it important, and how can we make it concrete and meaningful in a strategy or simulation game?

Axioms

Arcane
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https://axiomsofdominion.substack.com/p/settling-down-or-packing-up-camp?sd=pf

This is a post discussing how even something like a resource system or a logistics system impacts not only the agriculture capacity and military capability and religion of a society but also the often highly abstracted "culture" and thus flavor of that society. The thing that separates the experience of being Egypt or Rome or the Mongols often comes down to something as basic and core as their food supply and adjacent spheres of life.

When the mechanics of every faction of a game are practically identical and their "culture" and military are disconnected from geopgrahy and agriculture it is no wonder that it feels same no matter who you are inhabiting. Civ 6 arguably provides move flavor than CK3 to the different cultures in a mechanical sense even if that bar is incredibly low and I still have lots of criticisms.

Think about this. The Scythians in Civ 6 start next to many more cattle and horses but one you build the pasture on the tile does that even mean anything? +1 shield and +1 food and that it is. But at least that is more distinct than Castle holding vs tribal settlement vs nomad camp or w/e in CK3. Both games provide lame "flavor" like 20% cheaper cavalry units with +5 damage to horse archers or w/e dumb shit. No wonder the games feel bland.
 

Axioms

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So I'm writing my post about assemblies and republics vs democracies now. Ideally some modder will make a classical era mod, lured in by the unique mechanical capabilities of the game.

So all 4 Roman assemblies, plus the Senate, plus the Greek democracy assemblies plus the magistrates from both. Pretty low level simulation instead of being super abstracted like Imperator or Rome 2: Total War or w/e.

Of course no emergent society would actually end up extremely similar to Rome, mostly broad strokes, but a modder making a scenario/campaign could take the existing mechanics and faithfully replicate this stuff with minimal effort and without generating a performance hit like doing it purely with scripting would.
 

Fedora Master

Arcane
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Where's the game, Lebowski??
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Gahbreeil

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Feb 9, 2021
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Asarlaíocht
Maybe this will help you? It's a very good map generator.

Culture by definition is the collection of oral and written traditions of a people, tribe, state, and so on.

In a video game?

Going by Civilization's example, technology, world wonders and so on define the culture. Judging by PI's Grand Strategy's example, it's most notable in Crusader Kings 3, the core value as well as the literal traditions of a people. In latter games, it isn't as well developed.

In an RPG, you would shape the culture of your people or your character through dialogue, right? Perhaps, culture determines the decisions of the leader and is made through the leader's decisions.

Summarising:
  1. The fiction and non-fiction of a particular group of people.
  2. Their language and their style in architecture, writing/font, and the sort.
  3. What makes them unique?
 

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