Imperator - Menander Reveal 20/04/27

Imperator - Menander Reveal 20/04/27

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NFZed

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The individual revolts of the provinces were extremely common, Rome suffered rebellions in Hispania, Gaul, Egypt, Judea, Mesopotamia, Britain...
Thats something that would make sense, not a general insurrection every province rebels aside from italy but only provincial rebellions or rebellions just in territory.
Might even make the function assign army to province useful...
Never used it saw no reason but that way, just hand over Legio IX to Dickus Biggus, governor of Magna Graecia and be done with it, you only have to participate if the rebellion is too big
 

Kantoli

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Does the cultural integration mechanic actually integrate singular cultures (as was said), or culture groups? (What the given example of Gauls would imply)
 

Mazovia

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Would love to see strife between cultural groups, but more than just like group A doesnt like group B because mechanics, I'd like to see like some say cultural groups from high civilization pops have a dislike of lower civilization groups, but lower civ groups have like a "wow" awe factor like of higher civ groups. (Gauls vs Romans). Id like to see groups of high civ appreciate each other (Rome and Greece)

I'd also love to see traditional highlands vs lowlands cultural strife within a larger group.

I think in Vici 2 you pull troops from different regions, is that the case with Imperator? That would be a good spot for cultural strife modeling, like Spartan troops dislike for...pretty much everyone else. Or Roman legions not wanting to be under a germanic general.

Then of course is leadership models, like someone mentioned Caeser's appointment of Gauls to the Senate. Same thing could work for Governors and other leadership appointments.

Of course religion should factor into the cultural stuff too - traditional anti-semitism and such.

The one other thing I would say is that I hope (and I have a lot of faith) that you guys at Pdox can reflect the cultural thing is a real and meaningful way. The different worldviews of the major nations and the minors are almost enough to be two different games. Tribal loyalties recognized no borders while early bureaucracies like Persia and
Rome recognized and built the root of common law on property and borders.

The ancient world was brutal especially to minority cultural groups, and even the more tolerant big nations showed a clear divide between the in crowd and the 'barbarians'

Cultural differences should be significant enough to cause wars, rebellions, and dynastic shifts. Cultural assimilation and genocides should be more than a button click or a mechanical tallying of percentages, certainly not something with a specific end date (EU4 looking at you). Assimilating a peoples should take decades at least and generate challenging events and such.

Otherwise am loving the game and I think it could be your best yet! Until Vici3 comes around that is
 

Nostromo84

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So will this changes to culture stop tha blue blob, of all egyptians tuening into macedonians??
 

Bovrick

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Would love to see strife between cultural groups, but more than just like group A doesnt like group B because mechanics, I'd like to see like some say cultural groups from high civilization pops have a dislike of lower civilization groups, but lower civ groups have like a "wow" awe factor like of higher civ groups. (Gauls vs Romans). Id like to see groups of high civ appreciate each other (Rome and Greece)
I've mentioned it before, but the take on Religion being used in CK3 would be a great template for Culture in the future, dissembling culture into a series of languages, laws, tastes, insider/outsider views - stuff you've mentioned here would be analogues of the Faith Hostility mechanic there. There would have to be alterations of course, for example you would want a Diffusion of Ideas mechanic to allow transfer between cultures, accounting for unifications of groups or splintering. Probably not for this game, but I definitely believe that is the future for culture in Pdx games.
 

Adrianople

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Is the culture content going to be somewhat similar to the "Accepted Cultures" of EUIV and V2?
 

EricMN93

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Regarding the vassals I have some suggestions.

1- That the vassals can fight each other without the lord standing between them.

2-To be able to make alliances with other vassals to rebel several vassals at the same time, new casus belli of liberation.

3- If we are a vassal, we can ask someone outside to help us become independent.

4- If we are an independent civilization, we can make an alliance with a vassal of an enemy to help him achieve liberation.

5- If we conquer a territory 100% we can force it to defragment in many kingdoms.

6- Greater depth in mechanics to convince governor and recruit general.


I seem to remember that the Achaemenids took advantage of the weak moment of the Mede empire to prevail. The Parthians did the same with the remains of the Seleucid Empire.
 

TheMind

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Instead, we’ll be replacing this with an overall faction approval rating, which will not be weighted on a per-issue basis, and which acts more as a vote of confidence in your rulership as a whole. From a design perspective, this gives us a lot more creative control when using events and systems; and should mean that factions can play a much more integral part in your gameplay experience, rather than having seemingly arbitrary opinions on certain things. As a related note, it will be much more feasible to add unique factions to nations, government types, and even special interest groups that might appear or disappear at certain times.
This doesn't sound very good. Tying votes to characters is a very great move, but this one... meh. I'll see with future DDs to give an opinion.

Many of the current benefits of the numerous subject types in the game, will be converted to obligations; actions or toggles that can be performed on your subjects and which will cost trust or trust growth.
Is this similar to feudal contracts in CK3? If that's the case, this is very... impressive.



P.S: traits should be decisive for the senatorial alignment of a character, making them an actual thing to look at when interacting and manipulating the Senate.
 

tpapp157

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I like the direction of a lot of these changes.

In particular I think the change to subject states could be a big improvement. But it's important that they're done properly. So here are some of my notes to keep in mind as you're evaluating these systems.

The privileges and obligations of subject states were extremely diverse. I like the concept of allowing these to be tweaked on a per subject basis. In the screenshot you show tribute in gold but tribute in soldiers was also very common. For example, by the mid republic, Roman armies were mostly composed of mercenaries and tributary regiments from the other Italian states. Only a small minority of the army was composed of true Roman citizens.

I'd like to see subject status fluctuate naturally between the various tiers without necessarily triggering a rebellion or declaration of war with the overlord. As the power of the overlord fluctuates, the willingness of the subject to fulfill their obligations should also fluctuate naturally. This usually doesn't take the form of a formal declaration of independence but usually more subtle disobedience like "forgetting" or being "unable" to pay tribute but this could easily lead to de facto and then formal independence if left unchecked for too long. The Persian Satrapies, for example, were notorious for the fluidity of their obedience which could change significantly from one year to the next but really this was true of all subjects. Consider also for example the rapidly changing allegiances of the various Italian states during the Second Punic War as they vacillated between supporting Rome, supporting Hannibal, and neutrality even though they were all loyal subject states of Rome before Hannibal crossed the Alps and returned to that status 10 years later when Hannibal sailed back to Carthage.

Different tiers of subject status should available during peace deals with scaling warscore cost. Outright annexation should be very expensive with more independent subject statuses being much cheaper to enforce.

One of the major benefits of maintaining separate subject states was the ability to leverage existing local administrative and social structures to achieve far better compliance to laws, payment of taxes, and conscription of troops than if the central administration tried to do it themselves (assuming loyalty of the subject). If this isn't reflected in the new subject system then it will be a failure.

Another major benefit was in compartmentalizing populations of different cultures. As mentioned in the dev post, trying to integrate foreign populations was extremely frowned upon and would extremely upset everyone. It took a major civil war and hundreds of years for Romans to accept other Italians as their equals let alone barbarians like the Gauls which never gained acceptance even to the very end of the Western Roman Empire despite the Gauls (and especially the Southern Gauls) being quite Romanized. Separating foreign cultures into subject states keeps everyone happy.

Finally, subject states should be an important way by which the game reduces the micromanagement burden for the player which can become excessive as their empire grows. Every major empire of antiquity had dozens of subject states and so they should be a natural part of the player's empire as well. If you're worried about players being upset about "map painting" then I encourage you to develop a system by which a subject's map color is a variant of the overlord's color. Maybe it interpolates linearly between the subject's natural color and the overlord's color depending on tier of integration.
 

Andrzej2

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You should also rework in a similar way normal civil wars. Currently they are a joke. You added this disloyalty barrier of 40% and progress bar so In 100 hours of gameplay I didn't have civil war even once! In Eu Rome civil wars were frequent and fun. In Imperator I would need to keep people disloyal on purpose. Remove game over after losing civil war and make them more common. They were bread and butter of Eu:Rome and I miss them in Imperator.

If character has troops and is disloyal enough he should rebel anyway sooner or later. Not waiting for eternity of magical, immersion breaking number of 33% or whatever.

You should also remove or limit befriend option. In rare occasions I had disloyal characters I could easily make them my friends, it's ridiculous.
 
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Razmorg

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This doesn't sound very good. Tying votes to characters is a very great move, but this one... meh. I'll see with future DDs to give an opinion.
Yeah, this sounds a bit weird. So if you are in good graces with the senate you can do something they'll hate which they'll let you do but after that they'll start resisting you? I could maybe see this kind of be that you use your clout to forcefully convince people but they won't let you do it again. Which maybe is ok? I do like that the goal is to make it feel more like a tangible system thats understandable and you can interact with like say razing holy sites will make the traditionalists oppose you. If they get the balances right I could see this be an awesome interactive system.
 
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master_kong

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All of this seems really great and exciting. However i am skeptical about senate impact removal and linear subject relation development. Just skeptical though not against, we'll see how it'll work.

My main concern is the lack of QoL and UI/UX improvements. But i'll just say that and stop, because this is only the first diary now so i am expecting some things in this regard for upcoming diaries.

Lastly, when will we see a more fluid rise and fall of great families or minor families instead of minor characters? It's been a while now.
So I would like to make some clarifications.
Minor characters are not necessarily inconsequential characters, they will exist alongside your families at all times and may well hold important offices (and can even be Consul), when the circumstances arise (the main one being when your country increases in rank) they do form their own families.

Unlike the great families however they do not have the clout to demand a certain influence in state but will rather have to rely on their abilities (or possibly your will to not empower your families further). Minor characters will come families from the pool available to your culture, they are basically members of families whose influence is not as constant and entrenched as that of the Great Families. Even if a character of the Julia family dies however that does not mean that another will not show up later, and he will then be able to make an impact through his own abilities.
While the families will guard their privileges they will not be able to adopt anyone they want to, depending on their traits characters may refuse to become their clients and persevere as independent actors.

Since Families do not expect to hold all jobs in your country you are very likely to always have a fair number of minor characters in your service, where they can then prove themselves. What characters get to form a families is different depending on government type but it generally does mostly happen when country rank changes right now (for Rome the first time it happens will be after their first war, you will be presented with a choice of 4 different families to pick to join your starting ones).

Over time as this system evolves we want to do more things with it, including but not limited to more fluid rise of families (this is actually something the system handles quite well as it is but we have kept it happening somewhat restrictive while working out the new framework). The rework is of little use if it becomes a constant rise and fall however, since part of its purpose is that you can come to fear the influence of a powerful family that has built up its prestige over a very long time. So we do want to think carefully about how and when new families are added and old ones removed.

From feedback here it is clear that many would rather see some more fluid ways for families to rise at times outside of when rank changes with a minor character creating a new family to replace one of the existing ones, especially in Republics, and that is something we will take a look at. :)
 
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We Who Are About 2 Die

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Salvete Omnes!

As promised, today’s dev diary will give you the broad strokes on what you might expect from the Menander update.

As you know, the Menander update makes up the ‘culture’ portion of the season of religion and culture. The portrayal of these two things were not chosen as my focus for the season lightly; I feel that they are key to unlocking some of the potential of I:R as an experience.

Something many of you have mentioned and that we have long wished to change, is the way that cultures are dealt with on an internal level. Rather than relying solely on cultural assimilation, the Menander update will bring you:

Cultural Integration

This feature will overhaul the way that you interact with the pops within your empire. Every culture represented within your borders will be shown in a cultural overview, and will possess several values unique to pops of that culture.

You’ll be able to limit the maximum poptype of a culture, preventing them from attaining citizenship, for example. This will of course affect the base cultural happiness of pops belonging to this culture, increasing their likelihood of rising up in revolt. Legislating for the granting of citizenship to an entire culture will take time, of course, during which all manner of upset may be encountered. Of most importance, cultures will begin to act as the ‘voice’ for your pops.

Citizenship is not all fun and games, though. Pops with citizenship rights will count as primary culture for all mechanical purposes, yet the number of cultures with citizenship status within your empire will affect the overall happiness of all integrated cultures. Just as Caesar went too far in bringing gauls into the senate, so too may you.

Of course, the struggle for citizenship that so often caused instability in Rome could not be faithfully represented without:

Reworked Rebellions

The need for cultural diversity also brought up the need for reworking rebellions. Rebellions have never quite satisfied me as a player - they rarely occur due to high thresholds, and were almost solely related to conquest, rather than domestic dissatisfaction.

It was our aim when we produced this to prevent ‘whackamole’ rebels similar to some of our older titles. In retrospect, I believe we went too far. History is filled with doomed provincial rebellions, and we aim to strike a balance between cause, effect, and frequency of revolts under the new system.

Rebellions will no longer have a national threshold in order to begin. Instead, the provincial loyalty bar will be responsible for dictating whether a rebellion spawns. Combined with cultural happiness, this should result in much more focused revolts, that occur as a direct result of your action or inaction.

Rebellions will be able to ‘snowball’, with other provinces joining in if province loyalty reaches a similar level.

We’ve a few additional parts coming here, which I’ll leave until a future week to discuss in detail.

Senate and Factions Rework

We've decided to take the time to reimagine the faction and senate system that our titular nation (and many others) experience in republican playthroughs.

Firstly, I’d like to talk about something we’re removing, though. Senate ‘impact’ (otherwise known as the small hand that tells you if you can or cannot perform an action in republics, has been a thorn in our side for some time. The individual weighting on a per-issue basis for each political faction has proven to be exceptionally unwieldy, and makes it hard to get an overview of where your parties stand. (shown below)

View attachment 571635


Instead, we’ll be replacing this with an overall faction approval rating, which will not be weighted on a per-issue basis, and which acts more as a vote of confidence in your rulership as a whole. From a design perspective, this gives us a lot more creative control when using events and systems; and should mean that factions can play a much more integral part in your gameplay experience, rather than having seemingly arbitrary opinions on certain things. As a related note, it will be much more feasible to add unique factions to nations, government types, and even special interest groups that might appear or disappear at certain times.

Your actions will have direct consequences to your approval rating with various factions - sacking the holy site of Mars might cause outrage amongst the traditionalist optimates.

We’ll also be reducing the number of parties somewhat, for most countries. The 5 current factions aren’t very representative of ancient roman politics, and we feel that representing three main power blocs makes for a political landscape ripe for treachery and intrigue.

Additionally, we’ll be making some changes to how votes are calculated. Senate votes will be tied to characters (no, not one vote per character!), to represent the political clout of individuals. It should be possible therefore, for a particularly unruly senator to hold up bills entirely of their own volition.

We'll also be taking a look at adding senatorial objectives: faction generated demands that give factions both a sense of identity and a method of interacting with your gameplay directly. More on those in a future diary!

Subjects

Subjects will be receiving an overhaul in Menander, with the aim of making them more manageable, more potentially rewarding, yet less immediately powerful.

Subject relationships will now have a linear subject-type track from tributary to feudatory/integration. Every subject relationship will have a trust value which will grow at a rate influenced by opinion, inventions, and obligations. Trust itself can be spent to enact obligations, change tithes, perform actions, or upgrade subject type to a higher level on the track.

Warning, Game Director art/ui should be considered highly WIP:
View attachment 571636

Many of the current benefits of the numerous subject types in the game, will be converted to obligations; actions or toggles that can be performed on your subjects and which will cost trust or trust growth.

We’ll be looking at adding a few ways for subjects to interact with their overlord, too, but it is too early to tell quite how this will take shape.

---

There will be a host of minor changes, tweaks and additions, alongside these flagship features, and I’ll aim to cover those in a diary later on in the process.I hope you like what you see here; we’ll flesh out further details for each feature in upcoming diaries, but I hope this will be enough to keep you going until then!


/Peter
Please allow tributaries to form alliances, similar to tributaries in EU4. Frankly, tributaries realistically and generally were diplomatically independent nations that provided tribute to their hegemon for peace/protect.
 
Last edited:

Vohen

Lt. General
May 29, 2017
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Salvete Omnes!

As promised, today’s dev diary will give you the broad strokes on what you might expect from the Menander update.

As you know, the Menander update makes up the ‘culture’ portion of the season of religion and culture. The portrayal of these two things were not chosen as my focus for the season lightly; I feel that they are key to unlocking some of the potential of I:R as an experience.

Something many of you have mentioned and that we have long wished to change, is the way that cultures are dealt with on an internal level. Rather than relying solely on cultural assimilation, the Menander update will bring you:

Cultural Integration

This feature will overhaul the way that you interact with the pops within your empire. Every culture represented within your borders will be shown in a cultural overview, and will possess several values unique to pops of that culture.

You’ll be able to limit the maximum poptype of a culture, preventing them from attaining citizenship, for example. This will of course affect the base cultural happiness of pops belonging to this culture, increasing their likelihood of rising up in revolt. Legislating for the granting of citizenship to an entire culture will take time, of course, during which all manner of upset may be encountered. Of most importance, cultures will begin to act as the ‘voice’ for your pops.

Citizenship is not all fun and games, though. Pops with citizenship rights will count as primary culture for all mechanical purposes, yet the number of cultures with citizenship status within your empire will affect the overall happiness of all integrated cultures. Just as Caesar went too far in bringing gauls into the senate, so too may you.

Of course, the struggle for citizenship that so often caused instability in Rome could not be faithfully represented without:

Reworked Rebellions

The need for cultural diversity also brought up the need for reworking rebellions. Rebellions have never quite satisfied me as a player - they rarely occur due to high thresholds, and were almost solely related to conquest, rather than domestic dissatisfaction.

It was our aim when we produced this to prevent ‘whackamole’ rebels similar to some of our older titles. In retrospect, I believe we went too far. History is filled with doomed provincial rebellions, and we aim to strike a balance between cause, effect, and frequency of revolts under the new system.

Rebellions will no longer have a national threshold in order to begin. Instead, the provincial loyalty bar will be responsible for dictating whether a rebellion spawns. Combined with cultural happiness, this should result in much more focused revolts, that occur as a direct result of your action or inaction.

Rebellions will be able to ‘snowball’, with other provinces joining in if province loyalty reaches a similar level.

We’ve a few additional parts coming here, which I’ll leave until a future week to discuss in detail.

Senate and Factions Rework

We've decided to take the time to reimagine the faction and senate system that our titular nation (and many others) experience in republican playthroughs.

Firstly, I’d like to talk about something we’re removing, though. Senate ‘impact’ (otherwise known as the small hand that tells you if you can or cannot perform an action in republics, has been a thorn in our side for some time. The individual weighting on a per-issue basis for each political faction has proven to be exceptionally unwieldy, and makes it hard to get an overview of where your parties stand. (shown below)

View attachment 571635


Instead, we’ll be replacing this with an overall faction approval rating, which will not be weighted on a per-issue basis, and which acts more as a vote of confidence in your rulership as a whole. From a design perspective, this gives us a lot more creative control when using events and systems; and should mean that factions can play a much more integral part in your gameplay experience, rather than having seemingly arbitrary opinions on certain things. As a related note, it will be much more feasible to add unique factions to nations, government types, and even special interest groups that might appear or disappear at certain times.

Your actions will have direct consequences to your approval rating with various factions - sacking the holy site of Mars might cause outrage amongst the traditionalist optimates.

We’ll also be reducing the number of parties somewhat, for most countries. The 5 current factions aren’t very representative of ancient roman politics, and we feel that representing three main power blocs makes for a political landscape ripe for treachery and intrigue.

Additionally, we’ll be making some changes to how votes are calculated. Senate votes will be tied to characters (no, not one vote per character!), to represent the political clout of individuals. It should be possible therefore, for a particularly unruly senator to hold up bills entirely of their own volition.

We'll also be taking a look at adding senatorial objectives: faction generated demands that give factions both a sense of identity and a method of interacting with your gameplay directly. More on those in a future diary!

Subjects

Subjects will be receiving an overhaul in Menander, with the aim of making them more manageable, more potentially rewarding, yet less immediately powerful.

Subject relationships will now have a linear subject-type track from tributary to feudatory/integration. Every subject relationship will have a trust value which will grow at a rate influenced by opinion, inventions, and obligations. Trust itself can be spent to enact obligations, change tithes, perform actions, or upgrade subject type to a higher level on the track.

Warning, Game Director art/ui should be considered highly WIP:
View attachment 571636

Many of the current benefits of the numerous subject types in the game, will be converted to obligations; actions or toggles that can be performed on your subjects and which will cost trust or trust growth.

We’ll be looking at adding a few ways for subjects to interact with their overlord, too, but it is too early to tell quite how this will take shape.

---

There will be a host of minor changes, tweaks and additions, alongside these flagship features, and I’ll aim to cover those in a diary later on in the process.I hope you like what you see here; we’ll flesh out further details for each feature in upcoming diaries, but I hope this will be enough to keep you going until then!


/Peter
Oh wow, these look all really good and impactful, can't wait to see some screenshots!

The snowballing rebellions and subject rework look like could lay the groundwork for splitting empires in the future ;)
I always thought factions were supposed to feel unwieldy, but for gameplay purposes I have to agree that it doesn't work quite so well.

Is also great that it gives more protagonism and life to characters themselves, but I still think having only one character representing a whole faction is quite underwhelming.
Not that every seat should be one character, but a middle ground could be achieved by a handful of characters representing a faction.
Something like, say, for every 20 seats a faction has in the Senate, an additional character could be appointed as a representative, from popularity.
For example, if a faction had 56 seats, the three most popular characters (from rounded up 56/20) of that faction would be the representatives, with the most popular among them being considered the faction leader.
I think having between 1 and 5 characters per faction would strike a good balance overall.
 

TinWiz

Major
Jun 10, 2017
574
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At this rate Imperator will be the game we always hoped for sooner than we sometimes feared!

Anything for migratory tribal cultures? Will there be a viable barbarian culture that doesn't have to civilize (they don't need "citizens") and research to compete in warfare in the late game?
 

evilcat

Lt. General
Jul 24, 2015
1.309
372
Minor request on subjects:
Can each vassal type have separete line or list?
Reason: we can have a lot of vassals, and it would be nice to identify how many are client states (they take relation slot), who is tributari (not join war) or feudatory (will join war).
Right now they are just grouped together, and it is easier to search find state rather than look on list.

Senate factions:
Can embracing faction buttons build support for that specific faction? Why it always need to be populist? Why embracing mercantile builds support for Populists?
Populists could have two buttons: 1) Purge of the wicked, reduce corruption and support for populists 2) Vox populi - increase state and religion happines, but builds support for populists.
Some people want high populists for dicatorship, but otherwise they are bad.
 
Last edited:

Palando

Barrington Celticus
Feb 23, 2017
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The privileges and obligations of subject states were extremely diverse. I like the concept of allowing these to be tweaked on a per subject basis. In the screenshot you show tribute in gold but tribute in soldiers was also very common. For example, by the mid republic, Roman armies were mostly composed of mercenaries and tributary regiments from the other Italian states. Only a small minority of the army was composed of true Roman citizens.
You can also ask for manpower, as can be seen in the screenshot (right next to the gold).