Wednesday, May 3, 2017

WfS - Closing Up Tech-5

If you are new to this series of posts (WsS stands for "a world from scratch"), see the first in the series and work forward chronologically.

Now, a few housekeeping chores.  First, let me post an image from the Civ IV universe, dictating the base production of hammers, food and coins:

I've been reading the productive parts of the desert as "plains-flatland," but others may not concur with that.  No matter.  I don't expect anyone else to run things as I do.  The main thing is that the above template will work for most climates and features.  These are the 'base-line' productions, to which more production is added with type-6 hexes and better.  Speaking of which, I'll post this second guideline, which I've been describing with the previous posts:

Thus, if the flat land plain starts with 1 hammer and 1 food, then the type-7 hex will show that; the type-6 hex will then add a food and the type-5 hex both a food and a hammer.

The above should make something else abundantly clear.  If we consider a flatland/river hex, running across from desert, that is supposed to indicate a floodplain, with three food and one hammer.  Remembering that three food is seven times the amount of one food on the chart, this means that a type-7 hex in a floodplain is massively more productive; a type-6 hex on a floodplain would have five times the production of the type-6 hex we posited in the desert.

Therefore, when we talk about a richer, higher tech level country rushing next door to seize the goods, we're not talking about travelling to a poor country like Jawanda.  We're talking about the next hex over, where the amount of food produced is vastly more abundant.  A single hex could produce more food than all of Jawanda put together.  But this will become more evident as we move forward.

I've added a series of products that a tech-5 area ought to produce.  It should be noted that all techs above tech-5 would also have the technology to fish, hunt for furs and so on, but it might be interesting if we concentrate these references on tech-5 cultures and say that higher techs, though they may produce some of these things, will prefer to concentrate their hammers on other, more worthy products.  It is really up to us.

I think that covers tech-5 for the moment, except for one addendum.

I haven't yet talked about the great monoliths that a tech-5 culture might produce: Stonehenge in Britain, Altamira in Spain, the collected heads of the Olmecs or Easter Island (from which we stole one) and so on.  I'm not sure how to determine when one of these should exist, or even where.  I'm still thinking on this.  Surely, they would have to be insanely rare, perhaps one or two truly immense ones per continent.

Take note that monoliths, both great and small, can exist in high tech cultures; they're just not as celebrated ~ or perhaps they are celebrated, but by a select group of fanatics.

Whatever the case, we say good-bye to tech-5.  When I take up this series again, we'll begin on a tech-6 culture, across the water and about 100 miles to the north.  I'm just doing the work to get ready for that; I have Friday and Saturday off, so I'll be working during those days while watching over the online campaigns.


Vlad Malkav said...

Hello Alexis,

Your posts on Tech-5 with Civ-type hex data is a real blast to read, and provide much motivation towards taking up worldbuilding one more time.

Again and again, reading you, I feel that you add pieces to a greater whole that could, and should, be made to work on a computer, to generate, populate and manage a world.

Gonna read the Köppen Climate Classification, there are pieces there too ...

Thanks !

James said...

I will be keeping a close eye on this. I am especially curious as to what the rest of the first chart looks like (for hex types 1-4), and how the entire chart changes at various tech levels.

For purposes of coming up with these symbols, what size hexes do you use? 6 mile, or something smaller?

Vlad Malkav said...

@James : I don't think there are any hex types 1-4 for Tech-Level 5. I think such level of development has, as a prerequisite, higher Tech (organisation, government, infrastructure, etc. I guess ?).

As for the hex size, i'm interested as well - although if you think about it, population & symbol production & size are all scalable (however, if your size is small enough, it'll loose meaning).

James said...

That would certainly make sense, regarding settlements 1-4 not existing, but I was curious.

And sure, as food, coins and hammers are symbols, they are scalable, though you would want consistency once you decide a size.

I am interested regarding the terrains. What do you do with grassland with a river that ends in a coast? Is that a grassland + river, or is it a coast? Obviously, you just make a call, but the larger your hex, the more likely such situations arise.

Alas, I have many questions, but patience will answer most of them, I hope, so that is why I stuck to more immediate queries.

Alexis Smolensk said...


I say several times in the series that the hexes are 6 miles across.

I also explain the size of the food, coins and hammers, both in this series and in my posts, NTME; see the sidebar under tags.

Vegetation always determines the nature of a hex. A coastline is relevant only in that it adds a coin to type-6 hexes or better (type-7 and empty hexes get no coins).

Vlad Malkav said...

@James :
Yes, consistency and gameability, with believability a nice bonus ^^.
Damn, terrain type mergings is really something to think about, yes... I'm curious about Alexis' take on that too.

I'd suppose an average between the different types would be in order, modified with the coverage of each type.
But you could also have a "Coastland" modifier (a simplification not necessarily useful, as some coasts dosn't bring much while others bring a lot). Or a series of "dual-type" terrains (but that'd be a simplification of the averaging solution).

If you have it all in a computer program, you'd only have to zoom in to the smallest scale, determine what does the hex produce, and it'd sort itself while zoom out.

@Alexis :
Now that I think of it, a Type 1 Hex is a Global Hex with all the Inner Hexes "populated", yes ? But what if there is coast and sea in that Hex, then it'd be easier to populate all "earth" inner hexes, nyet ? (not that there's any real problem with that, just a thought)

James said...

I just reread your technology levels series, and got myself confused since that mostly discusses 20 mile hexes, sorry.

Thanks for answering my questions.

Alexis Smolensk said...


Your last post was answered as you were asking it, most likely. You're right about type-1 hexes. However, since we're just designating what a hex is in this series of making things up, it isn't "easier" to fill a coastline hex, it is simply done.

However, I think you're asking me how I generate the coast for my world. That's trickier. The generator gives what the seven types are for the seven hexes and then indicates what order the hexes are placed. If I have a pregenerated city in the hex, then that gets priority on the highest type of hex; if there are several pregenerated cities, then they are allotted an order based on their population size. Any other result that shows, say, a type-1 hex going into the water of a coastline, then I don't retain that type hex to the next placement on land ~ I simply disregard it and move onto the next type of hex in the next order. This makes my coastline hexes more continuous with inland.

Does that make sense, or shall I try to explain that again?

Alexis Smolensk said...


Remember that I break down 20-mile hexes into 6.67 mile hexes using the generator I just linked in the previous comment to Vlad. The 20-mile hexes are for the convenience of depicting a huge Earth in a manageable scale. But 6-mile hexes (6.67) are used for depicting a more detailed production setting.

You are welcome regarding your questions.

Vlad Malkav said...

Well, you indeed answered my question, many thanks ! And yes, that makes sense, don't worry