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Artfactial

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This will be the main thread concerning the progress on my Tamriel mod. A project that will add the world of The Elder Scrolls to Age of Wonders 3 as previously discussed in the old AOW forum thread here.
The discussion thread on the Steam forums can be found here.
It’s been in the workings for about a year and a half now and, bar some recent issues, has come a long way. This is both a recourse and a giant addition to the game. The aim is to make it fully compatible with the vanilla game (and modifications to it).

Current WIP image of the World map:



So, here’s what’s going on:

Main features:
  • All 10 races of Tamriel fully playable with unique visuals, abilities and units according to lore.
  • At least 2 XXL maps of the Tamriel continent (almost twice the size of a vanilla XL map)set in different Era’s. Currently a TES IV: Oblivion (end of E3) and TES V: Skyrim (E4 201) maps are planned with the basic map in its final stages.
  • Unique world structures such as inns, tombs and ruins.
  • Location specific custom enemies. You’ll find Frost Trolls, Sabrecats and Snow Wolves in the high north, Naga’s, Swamp Leviathans in the Blackmarsh and all types of ancestral undead in their corresponding resting places.
  • A rudimentary faction and religion system. Units and heroes can be members of guilds and political groups or follow specific religions. The available religions and factions will be dictated by Era, race, chosen racial governances and such. The gameplay impact of it all will, in most cases only be morale based (although religious feuds will play a more active role) as not to interfere too much.
  • Multi-level playing field. I wanted to bring the sense of exploration and vastness of the world that the TES games bring into the project. As such the maps feature known mountain passes, tunnel systems, caves, lost cities and vales and other places of mystery to explore and be wary of. This will provide both challenge as well as wiggle-room in scenarios where borders are set from the start.
  • Unique recruitable units based on locations. At the moment every city has their own Guard units. Some cities have local local Knigtly orders. Based on chosen religions, specific priests are recruited at temples. This includes Aedra, Daedra and local deities like the Almsvi. Every region will have apropriate units roaming about: the reach has forsworn reachmen, te Rim has Renrijra Krin, Vvardenfell has Ashlanders, etc.
  • A-symmetric play. This is a thing I prefer and an inevitable part of the political landscape. E.a. in a E4 201 scenario, playing as a member of the Third Aldmeri Dominion will start you out relatively comfortably while playing as the Stormcloaks or Dunmer will have you on your back feet from the go.
  • Dependency on the Decodence Map Editor Content pack to help bring the world to live.



Planned features:
-A calendar adhering to the calendar of Nirn. This includes a proper constellation cycle.
-An enormous multi-surface level map of the planet Nirn with all known continents.
-Empire quests to hand out tiles and commemorate historic conditions.

E4 Year 201- Skyrim Map
This is furthest along and features the following playable factions.
-The Empire. Including most of Cyrodiil, and some of High-Rock. Allied with Skyrim.
-Skyrim. With The Empire as an Ally and control over its western Holds. Starts at war with The Stormcloaks.
-The Stormcloaks. In control of the eastern Holds. Starts at war with Skyrim.

-Altmer. Summerset Isles with Thalmor enclaves and camps on the main continent.
-Bosmer. Valenwood, allied to the Altmer and Khajiit.
-Khajiit. Elsweyr , most of the Pellitine cities and some of the Annequina holdings. Allied to the Altmer and Bosmer.

-Redguards, parts of Hammerfell, tbd. Either Crown, Forebears or Lhotunic cities.
-Saxhleel, in control of Argonia and some of the ex- House Dres strongholds.
-Dunmer, in control of most of the northern Morrowind mainland. Exluding VVardenfell and including Solstheim.

I have been dealing with health issues and ran into some work-stopping memory problems with the editor which have ground down the progress for the last few months.
With a big thanks for the help from Liberty Valance, Charlatan and Gilafron the files are now accessible again!
I will now be getting back into it slowly and am hoping to start the closed beta again soon.

I’ll try to go more in depth on specific features in the near future and am hoping on some fresh views from people here. So by all means, ask questions, make requests!
 
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Artfactial

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Current development issues:

-Memory.
This thing is huge. I have not jet finished customizing all units let alone add many of the planed new ones or customize a lot of the new structures. The editor is at it's limits already. So I will probably be forced to split the mod into parts. The process of which will be pretty hard. I'm thinking of isolating all racial properties to a seperate download, but am unsure as to where to draw the line. The substantial Structure.Rpk would likely have to be split up as well, giving map-specific structures to their respective dependancies...I am doubting how much this will decrease the worload on the recourse portion however.
2-10-2018: Current plan is to divide the mod into 3 parts- 1.The basic racial resources, 2.The world structures and basic world map. 3. Any following maps set in different eras with complementing additional resources.
10-10-2018:
Mod divided into parts. Editing resources now possible. However, the map editor is no longer responsive. Crashing after every second save due to memory issues....
23-10-2018:
Memory issues for ModEd have been streamlined. Map Editor is finicky but am able to do multiple saves before it crashes.
9-11-2018:
Last week I had to re-start the creation of the base map due to Map Editor memory issues. Progress is fast and I am careful not to make the same mistakes.
7-12-2018: Work on the culture mechanics has seemed to disable any work on the map. I'm tired of having to fight it so will let it be for a while.
6-3-2019: Memory issues with MapEd seem to have been largely fixed. Slowly starting working on map again.

-Guild Unit progression.
9-11-2018: I will probably let units progress to the next Guild(faction) rank at every 4th level.
Questions that need to be answered are: -Are guild units class specific, specialization specific, or free for all baring culture and race?
-Racial Governance/ Culture splitting of races.
9-11-2018: Every race needs to be divided into (at least) two cultures, some are easier than others. Generally there is a sway and division in conservative/progressive, orderly/chaotic, Anuic/Padomaic etc.
7-12-2018: Cultures System is now in place, working as follows. Cities can have multiple Cultures which all have their own buffs, preferences and debuffs to take into account. Most cultures will be part of the Racial Governance choices to make, backing one racial culture will, most of the time, go against the wishes of the other.
A city can produce am Immigrant unit for any Culture it has adopted. This unit can build small colonies/enclaves called Districts of homogeneous cultural peoples. Any city which has a Cultural District within their borders can choose to Adopt the specific Culture. This way Cultures can organically migrate across the map and be integrated into other societies, or be wiped out altogether.

-Morality and religion
I want to use the AOW morality system. This requires me to make a scale of objectively good/evil deities, which the TES lore isn't very fit for. It has been decided that the best division would be to place the gods on a scale between Anu and Padomay. I will post the first draft of this list shortly.
7-12-2018: Any work on morality will have to wait until I figure out a way to use alignment bonuses...
 
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Asleam

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This all look very impressive, but there is one minor complaint I could make. While there is indeed 9 provinces, there are 10 playable races. Orsinium exists both during the time of the Oblivion Crisis and the Return of Alduin. While I'd understand if you said they are too small and weak to be competitive, I'd also point out that's kind of the point when it comes to the Orsimer, the Pariah Folk.
 

Artfactial

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Ah, sorry, yes of course 10 races. Orsimer are definitely playable. I'll rectify that in the post.
In all effect there is an 8 player cap so every map will have a focus on different races.

In the Skyrim scenario this means that the Brettons are partly still part of the Empire, partly Independent, as they are want to doing. I debated doing the same for Skyrim, but that leaves out the interesting choice of Skyrim in its civil war and would make it a minor faction kicking directly against the giant empire.
Same goes for the Dunmer, weakened as they are, I think many people will want to have a go at giving them a fighting chance and rebuilding Morrowind maybe even reclaiming Vvardefell. This also serves as a stopper for the Argonians who are otherwise already big and relatively unopposed.

The Orsimer do have their new Orsinium in the Skyrim scenario, hidden away, and the reach (on both sides) is dotted with Orc strongholds, part of the Orsinium faction. I'm ambiguous about Orcrest.
Nothing is to stop you from choosing a peaceful path with them and giving them a a legitimate share in your empire or to play as an Orsimer leader from whatever province and bring them to power. The ruins of previous Orsiniums are littered about the Hrothgarian Mountains (so can be rebuild) and the Orsimer as a race still bare a grudge against the Brettons and Redgaurd for their destruction.
Interestingly, in my play-testing, either Skyrim or Hammerfell has been pretty ruthless in the matter most of the time. New Orsinium is often burned to the ground when found, which is of course, the tradition. Good to show some love for the Pariah Folk indeed.;)



I've been toying with an 'underdogs' scenario around the same period; although any divided period would do, say the Interregnum.
Playable factions would be the smallest ones against the big dogs.
-Ulfric and his rebellion.
-The Orsimer and their Orsinium.
-The Redoran rebuilding Morrowind.
-The Brettons with maybe Daggerfall at the forefront of a new united High Rock.
-Anequinna with its devided city states.
-Pellitine, devided from their northern kin by the Thalmor.
The other playable factions are less clear. I'm thinking Argonia reverting to their recluse state and being an unplayable/neutral province.
-Valenwood would be part of Summerset
-Skyrim part of the Empire.

Which reminds me of my plans to try and implement (semi)-dynamic Empire quests handing out titles for unifiers.
One could get a title for rebuilding the Orsinium ruins or bringing a Great House back to former glory, re-uniting The Empire, destroying the Dunmer as the Axleel or uniting the Corwns and Forbearers in Hammerfell.
 
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Alright some good and some slightly less good news.

I was able to split the mod up into two basic parts. The Mundus and and te Nirn pack. The first contains all basic mechanics and racial properties, heroes and units. The latter contains the collection of custom map decorations and buildings as well as the basic world map. This should divide the workload over multiple files, allow me to actually edit the mod files and provide smaller downloads. Any following maps will be distributed in separate downloads, being dependent on (both!) these two basic packs.

It hasn’t, however, solved all memory issues (especially with the newest W10 update messing with it).
Besides that it appears to have broken the map; I can no longer save it after editing it without getting a memory error.

I will look around for some solutions, including starting from scratch on a bigger dimension map in order to allow more breathing space, have more traversable water and (I’m sure some have noticed) not squish Blackmarsh and Elsweyr that much.
This will be even more work and delay work on other things so I am not sure I’m willing to undertake it. But we’ll see.

I think to have decided on calling the mod Age of Tamriel; simple straight forward, recognizable.
 
Mechanics: Religion/Morality + Guild/Specializations

Artfactial

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Alright, time for an actual update.
First of: I’m working on a logo for the project, check it out in the Op!
Take a coffee, this will be another longer one.

I have been having problems with the map editor, but am glad to say that, after some extensive cleaning and backtracking, I can now work on the map again, if sparingly, so that it at least can be put into a playable state.
Plans for a new, larger, map have been put on the long track; first priority is to get this thing into a testable state.

That said, I have been spending some time on new ideas. Adding units and, more importantly, custom icons. I think I’ve found a process and style that is reasonable doable for the entire project.


Dwemer Spider Worker Wip. One out of 4 types. Centurions and Spheres are also coming along.

A fun little thing that was well worth the trouble are Birthsigns. Every Hero and leader (and some specific units, like the Shadowscales) have a designated birthsign they are born under with the appropriate bonuses and penalties that come with them. I was thinking of giving the Leader a random birthsign to spice things up, but I think people would rather choose their own.
This will also play into events later down the line such as the seasonal cycles and constellations in the sky that will benefit these characters.

Birthsigns are in, actual effects almost figured out.

Major balance and mechanics restructuring, besides rudimentary hero implementation, are the most pressing issues at the moment. But in the mean time I am struggling with a few ideas I would like input on:

-Guild unit progression
Hirable guild units will be a thing and I already have the skeleton in place for the Dark Brotherhood, Thieves Guild, Mages Guilds (e.a. Winterhold College, Crystal Tower, the Sydod) , Arena,Fighters Guilds and the various religious orders.
Now, I am in a pickle as to handle the guild progression; we have wonderful lists of guild rank names so it would be great to use these in-game.

  1. -Option 1: Make units level the full 4 ranks before attaining the next Guild rank. Like this: Novice Mage Guild Sorcerer Rank 4>Apprentice Mage Guild Sorcerer Rank 1. This is a difficult path to walk, but comes with great satisfaction. The idea would be to have Novice mages be significantly weaker than the normal Apprentice unit, but , by the time they grow into a single Archmage, they are a powerful T4 unit. This is a pretty mayor department from vanilla game units but I really like the prospect.
  2. -Option 2: Make the leveling superficial. Every level consists of an evolution into the next rank. The buffs would be less disruptive and significant, and the leveling more of a flavor thing than an actual investment. Although I could go through the entire guild ranking, this would take a LOT of setting up. Like this: Arena Pit Dog Level 2> Arena Brawler Level 1. Arena Brawler level 2>Arena Bloodletter Level 1. Etc.
  3. -Option 3: Stepped leveling. The leveling evolutions are incrementally harder. Like this: Dark brotherhood Murder Level 2>DB Slayer Level 1. DB Slayer Level 3> Db Eliminator Level 1. A toned down version of Option 1, less extreme, less work to put into the unit.

Another thing to consider in this: I have previously stated to not want to alter the vanilla Classes (except for my current exclusion of the Dreadnought class for Tamriel races). I might add new specializations and am definitely playing into themes and mechanics of classes. But these guild lend themselves very much to be linked with a class. In the case of the Assasin and Apprentice units one could see them being direct extensions to them. But; I would like them to be usable by other classes. A Warrior should probably be able to contract the Dark Brotherhood and a Theocrat will have need of the Mages Guild. What do people think?


Daggerfall with custom, progressive city visuals wip.

-Moral compass
I would love to implement the moral alignment system in a way, but am very hesitant as to go about it. TES lore is often ambiguous and not all things are clear cut. A nice example is this: I could give Good alignment points for building Aedra/Nine divine temples and chapels and Evil alignment points for Daedra worship. Taking a Aedra/Daedra worshipper specialization should have moralistic impact. That would appear fine for the races of men. But when we get to things like the Khajiit, who have a nice mixture of Aedra and Daedra worship, or the Dunmer, who shun the Aedra altogether, it becomes difficult. I can make, like the Dark Elves have done, the distinction between Evil and Good Daedra…but that would imply the same sentiment for all people.


Anvil with custom wip Imperial textures and an Anvil Guard Watch.

Next update I’ll talk a bit more about my Racial Governance plan and Cultures. I have been dividing the races into two cultural groups (more obvious for some than others) so that you can steer your empire into certain directions and please specific factions.
 
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Mechanics: Religion/Morality I

Rodmar18

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Moral/Alignment:
Why not straying afar from the classic Good/Evil scale. As you say, you could build up a Aedra/Daedra scale instead. If the Imperial assassins are no less evil-doers than the Dunmeri assassins, the Empire and Dunmers would be at the opposite ends, though. As a result the alignment-based skills wouldn't be about making "good" or "evil", but rather worshipping one pantheon or the other. I think that you could achieve a good TES flavor this way. As an example, a "good-doer" worshipping the Nine wouldn't be penalized if he asks help from the darkest of the Nine. Of course, you'd have characters who worship a pantheon as a whole, and characters who dedicate themselves to but one deity, for the same aedric/daedric alignment.

Then, there's the Tribunal...

Another solution would be to put all the aedras and daedras on the same scale of "benevolence" toward their worshippers and/or the mortals as a whole. I don't know much about the Imperial Cult... are the Nine all that good? On this scale, "good" daedras would be more benevolent than "evil" daedras, good meaning more previsible, more trustable, less demanding on the mortals, ...


Classes and affiliation:
The most straightforward, if you want each class able to elect one or more guilds, would be to treat guilds as specializations. You would have a Warlord from the Imperial Guild Mage, a Sorcerer from the Dark Brotherhood, a Rogue from the Telvanni House, etc. The greatest synergies would be achieved when the class matches well with the specialization (Rogue from the Hlallu House or the Dark Brotherhood, Warlord from the Redoran House, etc). This specialization would grant a handful of flavor skills to the leader.
Then they are TES3-like specializations, like the magic schools. If you want every character to be affiliated to a guild, that lets two slots for other such specializations. That means that a Sorcerer could master one school and be affiliated, or be an adept at two schools and be affiliated... even an adept affiliated to two guilds.
I don't know if you can link a specialization to a class and a race, but Telvanni House has not the reputation of welcoming "foreigners".
 
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Moral/Alignment:
Why not straying afar from the classic Good/Evil scale. As you say, you could build up a Aedra/Daedra scale instead. If the Imperial assassins are no less evil-doers than the Dunmeri assassins, the Empire and Dunmers would be at the opposite ends, though. As a result the alignment-based skills wouldn't be about making "good" or "evil", but rather worshipping one pantheon or the other. I think that you could achieve a good TES flavor this way. As an example, a "good-doer" worshipping the Nine wouldn't be penalized if he asks help from the darkest of the Nine. Of course, you'd have characters who worship a pantheon as a whole, and characters who dedicate themselves to but one deity, for the same aedric/daedric alignment.

Then, there's the Tribunal...

Another solution would be to put all the aedras and daedras on the same scale of "benevolence" toward their worshippers and/or the mortals as a whole. I don't know much about the Imperial Cult... are the Nine all that good? On this scale, "good" daedras would be more benevolent than "evil" daedras, good meaning more previsible, more trustable, less demanding on the mortals, ...
I think the more thematically appropriate way to do it would be by 'Anuic' vs 'Padomaic', which loosely maps onto 'aedra vs daedra' but more represents the sort of underlying philosophical outlooks (it's something similar to 'order vs chaos' bit a bit murkier and more confusing than that)
 
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Thank you both for the input!

Religion and morality
I think the Anuic vs. Padomaic nature of things fits very well, and is a lot less condemning. Although I don’t think It would be necessary to bluntly state so in-game as most faithful will probably not think of their religions that way, safe for the more knowledgeable theologians and…the Altmer.
I was thinking of giving the Good and Evil points based on building shrines, temples, and (later) doing the bidding of your chosen deity. Perhaps recruiting units from a certain religious faction could do the same in minor amounts.
This way I can scale the specific actions per race and god.
This way, however, it would be very hard for a Dunmer to align to Good (IF all deities get the same Moral Points per race). Unless I give them the option to embrace the Nine. The Tribunal isn’t a very large concern as I am, at the moment, focusing on the Skyrim scenario. It would of course, be awesome to have your Dunmer revert back from the New Temple to the Tribunal and venerate the Three as either gods or Saints instead of the Daedra.
With their power stemming from Lorkhan and their rebellion against the Daedra, are good clauses to nudge the the Almsivi into the Anuic camp. Although it could be argued they are more like Daedric princes on Nirn.
Putting all deities on a single scale seems the mechanically easiest, but it would quite hard.
I don’t think there is much discrepancy between the morality of the Nine. They all have their preferences and judgements, but by their nature are bound to preserving mortals and the mortal realm. Talos is, as usual, the odd duck in there, being connected to Lorkhan makes him Anuic with Padomaic influences; like the Tribunal. Naming them neutral would make Lorkhan a neutral force which he definitely was not.

The beast races are interesting in this way as well. The Khajiit would appear to be embodiment of chaotic Padomaic incentive. They do and be as they please with no strong ties to ownership and static hierarchy. Their pantheon is suitably made up of both Daedra and Aedra. The divide within their culture would be between the chaotic Annequina nomad/city states and the more organized and spiritual Pelinquin people.
The Hist of Argonia seem the embodiment creation and Padomay's forces of change. The fact that strains of Hist appear to have seeded in Daedric realms and in the void enforces this. The Argonians I am having the most trouble with to split into two cultural groups. There is a straight divide between Argonians born and raised with their connection to the Hist and those that have adapted and evolved outside of Blackmarsh. It would be weird to have an ‘outsider’ culture take over the province, but perhaps the only way to really make a meaningful choice for them.
The Bosmer, Khajiit and Argonians also appear to have some general ‘neutral observer’ and immaterialism running through their cultures.

The Yokudan pantheon is the most difficult to wrap my head around in this. The base believe tends to be Padomaic (almost agnostic?) with the world existing within a chaos and struggle for survival. Yet they include many deities which correspond quite directly to the Aedra. Perhaps this is the Imperial/Forebear view through which most of the information comes to us.

The link between cultures and how to integrate them into the Racial Governance sides becomes a bit more clear in this way too. The Pandomaic cultures tend to do whatever they please, leading secluded lives with an often clan-like approach forming city-states and

Thinking of this geographically I was struck by an idea. The Northern hemisphere is largely Anuic while the Southern provinces are more Padomaic….With the exception of the Summerset Isles and Morrowind in the far corners. Their exception is not static however. The 3E has the Altmer venerating the Et-ada and the Dunmer the Tribunal both; both could be a form of Anuic. After the Oblivion Crisis however, they Dunmer would go back to Padomaic Daedra worship and the Altmer would double down and defy anything to do with Padomay or Lorkhan. I suppose both of these have always had a prevalence in their cultures but it is interesting to see these scales tipped.
But to give ‘Good’ bonuses for worshiping Anuiel with the intention of rejoining Mundus with it and erasing physical existence can hardly be justified. Perhaps only morally penalizing the Thalmor would be best.

Bottom line is: there needs to be a Aurbis scale of pantheons and deities. Deciding whether they are on the Chaotic or Orderly side of the whole should be done on a per-deity basis. Base line being Daedra=Chaos/change Aedra=Stability/creation.
Please tell me if I got any of this wrong! I want to get the basics right when basing a mechanic of it.

Specializations and factions/guilds
I had played with the option but I really like your Specialisation idea! I really want to give players options and not restrict them too much. If you want to conquer Tamriel with a Daedra-worshiping Bosmer Necromancer or have an Orc go on a crusade to convert the continent to the Nine, you should be able to. The idea of being able to mix and match Classes and Guild specializations is awesome, almost like a dual-class kind of approach. This would, however, kind of imply your level 1 leader is the global head of the faction/guild though, which would be odd.
It also poses a difficulty in how to manage the type of faction/guild you want to use. Should there be a ‘Great House’ specialization which gives you the option (I don’t really know how to as of yet) to pick which house to work with from the start via research?
Same with an Assasins Guild specialization Dark Brotherhood/Morag Tong choice and so on.
This kind limits the world diversity however. In case of the great houses I can give each city their appropriate cultural heritage according to the House Districts. But to do this for every guild and faction in every city? That would ask a lot of improvisation for very little and limiting gain.

Dividing the magic schools among existing specializations is cool, but I am not entirely sure this would hold up well. I.a. Tes game-wise there has always been a sort of tiered Atronach Conjuration path Fire>Frost>Storm>Magma etc. Limiting the natural summoning spells to the chosen element will hinder some and make no sense for a sorcerer to not be able to learn those spells outside of their specialization. It would however, allow for a greater spell variety outside of class specifics.

The ‘foreigner’ hate isn’t necessarily a specialization thing. I can give any unit a specific opinion of any race or faction. For factions/specializations to only be allowed by certain races would perhaps make sense. A non-Dunmer leading a Great House or an Altmer leading the Stormcloak rebellion would be…silly.

Progress setback note
On a sadder note, it appears my cheers for the map progress and workability where slightly too early. I might have finally broken it as I can’t open the map anymore.
I have, however, successfully set up a map with a larger size (with the help of settings by Gilafron) so I might just go ahead and start over with the map and get the proportions and scale right this time. A lot of the structural mechanics are down to the mod side and not to the map. The biggest job is creating the geography and naming the entities.


Scale comparison between old and new map-layout plan. More wiggle-room and a relative scale that is closer to that of Daggerfall than of later entries.

I will post a draft of the Cultural Divides for the Racial Governance choices later on.


Sorry for the enormous post, this is kind of how my brain works atm.
 
Last edited:
Map Progress III

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Update on the map rebuild progress:


I've also done some work on new visuals for the Human city tiers. This means that pretty much every race of Men now has a unique architecture and texture for their cities on all levels.
Next are the elves which are a lot harder to pin down, especially the Dunmer.
 

Rodmar18

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About the Dunmer, are you limited in the number of playable factions? If not, you could have as many architectures as there are Houses, each one being considered a playable faction, I guess.
Or could yo have an Avatar/House skill that change your towns' architecture upon research?
Or, would it be possible to alter one single city upgrade's architecture, so that it's graphically enough to add your House's flavor to every town it's build in? I'm thinking about current class buildings' architecture, and the fact that the Necromancer class gets distinctive non-production buildings too (replacing those related to happiness and growth any other classes share). On top of having a tree in his city, a Telvanni Archdruid could have a mushroom structure too (associated to a non-class specific building).
 

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Good suggestions, I've been thinking along the same lines.

Sadly we are bound to 8 players max so that even per map we won't be able to have all races playable, let alone different cultures within those races as separate players.
The cultures, factions and , in the case of the Dunmer, Great Houses are going to be differentiated and specialized. If you want to force Colovian culture onto the Nibenese cities, you can. If you want to bring House Hlaallu back and overthrow the rest, you can.
The city models are tightly linked to to the race, so that is almost impossible to deviate from within a race; the Necromancer class does offer an alternative but I don't think it's very viable as it is tightly locked to the 'dead' state of cities. It is very well possible to unlock buildings and upgrades via classes and specializations.
If culture is going to be bound to a specialization it could work in that way.
I have indeed looked into the city upgrades that add extra visuals such as class upgrades or walls, but these were hard to make use off. I recently found the Harbor upgrade which looks like it operates more like a normal upgrade would: I am going to experiment with it.
It would be great to have cultural architecture and actually visible temples. It would all have to be either overlapping or dancing around other upgrades however as not to make a mess of buildings distorting each other.

On that topic, I was thinking of allowing multiculturalism. Cheydinhal would be Nibenese with either Indoril or Dress cultures, Bruma would have old Noridc culture etc.
The idea being that, like migration, you could introduce any culture you have in your empire to any city. This is all theoretical still and I haven't gotten it to work yet, but it would be pretty awesome I think.

I'll add some screenshots of the human city visuals later on.:)
 

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Thank you both for the input!

Religion and morality
I think the Anuic vs. Padomaic nature of things fits very well, and is a lot less condemning. Although I don’t think It would be necessary to bluntly state so in-game as most faithful will probably not think of their religions that way, safe for the more knowledgeable theologians and…the Altmer.
I was thinking of giving the Good and Evil points based on building shrines, temples, and (later) doing the bidding of your chosen deity. Perhaps recruiting units from a certain religious faction could do the same in minor amounts.
This way I can scale the specific actions per race and god.
This way, however, it would be very hard for a Dunmer to align to Good (IF all deities get the same Moral Points per race). Unless I give them the option to embrace the Nine. The Tribunal isn’t a very large concern as I am, at the moment, focusing on the Skyrim scenario. It would of course, be awesome to have your Dunmer revert back from the New Temple to the Tribunal and venerate the Three as either gods or Saints instead of the Daedra.
With their power stemming from Lorkhan and their rebellion against the Daedra, are good clauses to nudge the the Almsivi into the Anuic camp. Although it could be argued they are more like Daedric princes on Nirn.
Putting all deities on a single scale seems the mechanically easiest, but it would quite hard.
I don’t think there is much discrepancy between the morality of the Nine. They all have their preferences and judgements, but by their nature are bound to preserving mortals and the mortal realm. Talos is, as usual, the odd duck in there, being connected to Lorkhan makes him Anuic with Padomaic influences; like the Tribunal. Naming them neutral would make Lorkhan a neutral force which he definitely was not.

The beast races are interesting in this way as well. The Khajiit would appear to be embodiment of chaotic Padomaic incentive. They do and be as they please with no strong ties to ownership and static hierarchy. Their pantheon is suitably made up of both Daedra and Aedra. The divide within their culture would be between the chaotic Annequina nomad/city states and the more organized and spiritual Pelinquin people.
The Hist of Argonia seem the embodiment creation and Padomay's forces of change. The fact that strains of Hist appear to have seeded in Daedric realms and in the void enforces this. The Argonians I am having the most trouble with to split into two cultural groups. There is a straight divide between Argonians born and raised with their connection to the Hist and those that have adapted and evolved outside of Blackmarsh. It would be weird to have an ‘outsider’ culture take over the province, but perhaps the only way to really make a meaningful choice for them.
The Bosmer, Khajiit and Argonians also appear to have some general ‘neutral observer’ and immaterialism running through their cultures.

The Yokudan pantheon is the most difficult to wrap my head around in this. The base believe tends to be Padomaic (almost agnostic?) with the world existing within a chaos and struggle for survival. Yet they include many deities which correspond quite directly to the Aedra. Perhaps this is the Imperial/Forebear view through which most of the information comes to us.
Some of this is a bit wrong - TES theology is pretty confusing. Lorkhan may be generally considered an Aedroth, but he is almost the archetypal padomaic - he embodies change and action, it was him that made the first move, tricking the other gods into creating the world. That's why he's at the heart of Dunmeri philosophy. It was Lorkhan that taught Boethiah the Psijic Endeavor ( PSJJJJ being the ineffable and ever-changing action that is Padomay). Generally speaking Padomaic cultures venerate Lorkhan, and Anuic ones treat him as a devil. As such Dunmeri/Chimeri/Velothi philosophy is absolutely padomaic. Perhaps moreso than any other civilisation on Tamriel. And the Almsivi didn't rebel against the Daedra - they took their places, fulfilled their anticipations.

Similarly Talos is broadly padomaic. Although a bit more contradictory by his association with Akatosh through the Amulet of Kings and being dragonborn emperor and so forth.

I would say you're correct on the Argonians being largely Padomaic, and the Bosmer and Khajiit being somewhere in the middle. Remember, it's not as simple as tallying up the number of Aedra or Daedra - it's more to do with the fundamental philosophical outlook. There are even a few Daedra that are actually broadly Anuic. Certainly Meridia and Jyggalag. To some extent Malacath, given his origins as Trinimac.

And the geographic distribution is actually West to East. The Summurset Isles, Adamantine Tower and Crystal-Like-Law in the far West. The Imperials in the centre with their dual-veneration of Akatosh and Talos. And Lorkhan's heart, Black Marsh, and the Padomaic Ocean in the Star-Wounded East. The West looks towards the past, and the East towards the future.

You're right that Yokudan theology is pretty weird, and I can't remember exactly how they fit in.
 
Mechanics: Religion/Morality III (+Race Visualization)

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Theology and moral alignment

Thanks a lot for clearing that up!:)
I had indeed kind of written off any engagement between Daedra and Lorkhan because of their disagreement. But that Is, of course, silly.

As such Dunmeri/Chimeri/Velothi philosophy is absolutely padomaic. Perhaps moreso than any other civilisation on Tamriel. And the Almsivi didn't rebel against the Daedra - they took their places, fulfilled their anticipations.
I see that now; their will do adapt and weather through the hardships thrown at them personally or racially in order to test them, make them stronger and ascent fits with that force of change.
I never knew the Dunmer wehere that actively obliged to Lorkhan,.
The Tribunal still is a bit contradictory to me; in a way they misused Lorkhan’s power while at the same time breaking an oath to Azura and in response mocking her and the Daedra. To them, at the start at least, it was a quicker way to their racial ascension, I presume?
I believe outwardly the Almsvi might want to appear to take the place of the Daedra, but personal relations with the ‘Good Daedra’ appear strenuous at most times (if any of the stories can be believed). The ‘recognizing’ of the Tribunes’ power might be little more than that. It reminds me a lot of Egypt’s Akhenaten’s religion; casting the old gods aside and venerating only one; but only the king and his family can do so, the common folk have to venerate the Aten through venerating the royal family.asd

Alright, Talos’ changing force, and mantling of Lorkhan ground him in Padomeic power. I see now.
Game-mechanically, this still is a bit of a dilemma. Worshipping Talos can be considered slightly more evil/padomeic than the other Eight. The Aldmers wish for a existence without physical chaos emobied by padomaic actions is Anuic, but the Thalmor’s fixation on eradicating Lorkhans work still is an active force of change and can hardly be called good. Not sure how to tackle things like this.
This mostly boils down to the objective nature of the game’s good/evil system, of course.

And the geographic distribution is actually West to East. The Summurset Isles, Adamantine Tower and Crystal-Like-Law in the far West.
Yes, once I drew it up I was hard-pressed not to make it a slanting diagonal line at best. With the inclusion of Talos as a Padomaic force within the Anuic pantheon the ‘neutral’ dividing line is a bit clearer (I never knew Bretons actually have less reverence for Talos than the Nords and Imperials)

So; in reviewing this, whenever mortals near Padomeic power whilst being, in essencse, part Aedra, they near the melting of the two brothers and so become sort of an absolute neutral in that moment, achieving CHIM and/or becoming gods/immortals. Very fitting, as The Monomyth describes Aurbis as ‘the Gray Center between the IS/IS NOT of Anu and Padomay’.
Talos and Vivec at a certain point being a dual power within their pantheon; Manimarco and Dagoth-Ur used the Padomeic powers to become actual immortals. The first leaning towards the plea of mortals, the latter straying away from it, in their own way.
Interesting too that both Vivec and Talos are worshiped (as they craved to) by their respective races. Why is this?

Okay so, in view of their genesis and intent I have drafted this list. This has nothing to do with their relative power or how much they manifest this in the mortals’ realm. This scales them on their beings stemming from either Padomaic or Anuic genesis or intent.

Padomay
Sithis (Or should be pure Neutral?)
Molag-Bal (Bend on the twisting, torture, changing and subjication of anything Anuic and Aedric= P)
Mehrunes Dagon (Destruction, Change, Revolution= P)
Vaermina (Both tortures and inspires mortals. Dreams and nightmares.
Mephala
Boethia (secret plots, conspiracry, deceit, treason, ulawful overthrow of authority= P, will to strengthen and test mortals for hardship and dicepline= A)
Namira (Possibly more P?)
Sheogorath (duality is essence, creator of chaos and divine creative genious
Peryite (change and pestilence =P Natural order and evening of odds=N, Possibly more A?)
Sanguine
Nocturnal
Hermaeus Mora
Hircine
Clavicus-Vile
Malacath (Aedric origins)
Meridia (Original Magna-ge)
Azura (enamored with mortals,
Sotha-Sil (‘reshaping the world’, twisting life-forms. Most bend on creating perfectly ascended realm)
Talos (mortal origins, manteld Lorkhan (P),
Yggalag (possible lower, too little known?)
Vivec
Arkay (Should be more A?)
Almalexia (aspects of Akatosh= A, anticipation of Azura= P)
Dibella
Kynareth
Julianos (Should be more P?)
Zenithar
Stendarr

Mara
Auri-el/Akhatosh (first of the Aedra, staunch oppose of Lorkhans trick,
Anu

Custom Visuals and general Mechanics
In the mean time I have been adding the backbone of the religion system. This now includes a greater integration of the ‘Worships X’ mechanic and I have added the Divine Wayshrines to the map. Daedric shrines will have to be sporadic and I’m not sure I will add all of them to every province. The new map allows for a lot more detailing, but I should not oversaturate it with structures. Map progress is puffing along nicely, I am nearly done with Cyrodiil’s first pass before I move North to Skyrim.

I also have added Ayleid Wells around Cyrodiil which in turn instigated the Ayleid designs that I can now apply to more structures.


I have been dragged into the shady wordy of free/custom online 3D-models. This will open up a LOT more possibilities in customization (before I was limited to ‘kit bashing’ within the editor) but I will have to be careful to keep track of what I add and at what quality.

Here’s some of the aforementioned custom city visuals, all still a WIP. I also noticed I opted out of giving some races their list of custom new settlement names since it is such a pain to set those up, but I went ahead and did them for the races of men now. Which leaves the Orcs and the custom Fortress names for all (ow).

CW:Breton, Redguard, Nord, Imperial.

I'll try and get the Cultural Division Wip list up soon for my progress on Ragial Governance levels.
 
Mechanics: Racial Governance Cultures I

Artfactial

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Alright, as mentioned before, here is my current concept list of choice directions and cultural divides per race. Some are far easier than others.
I’ve started implementing the skeleton of the mechanics so I will only have to change parapeters later on.

Redguards
  • Crowns- Military focus. Yokudan pantheon focus, conservative, dislike foreigners.
  • Forebears- Divines pantheon focus. Diplomatic, trade.
Nords
  • Children of Kyne/Admoran (Eastern Skyrim)- Worship old gods (atmoran animals?), military focus, boosts to naval an Nord units.
  • Imperialist (Western Skyrim)- Worship the Nine, diplomatic focus, boosts to economy and expansion. Need better name!
Imperials
  • Colovian- Military Focus, boosts to legion costs and training, vasalization bonuses?
  • Nibenese-Economic focus, boosts to research and income, Religion bonuses

Bretons
  • Regal-Military focus with buffs towards unification (goal of High King/Queen).
  • Feudal-Economic focus with buffs for exploitation of citizens and heroes.

Dunmer Need help!
  • Tribunal or House of troubles?
  • House of Reclamation/new temple?
The division is very muddled since, as a whole, the Dunmer are reclusive Daerdra worshipers. But among themselves incredibly divided. Other divisions might be (reinstatement of) Almsvi vs. Old Ways (Daedra Worship). Economic Houses (Dres, Hlaallu, Indoril) vs. Militaristisc Houses ( Redoran, Inbdoril, Sadras, Dagoth). Or Imperialistic vs. Traditional ..whatever that might entail in 4E...

Altmer Hard. I think it's an interesting direction but not too sure about the lore-correctness.
  • The Young/Thalmor-Military focus, influence and vision bonuses. Expansion. Anti-Lorkhan buffs.
  • The Elder- Magic/research focus. Seclusion in peace. Return to old standards.
Orsimer
  • Parahia Folk-Military/tribal focus. Playing ‘tall’. Raiding mechanics. Diplomacy penalties.
  • Orsinium-Magic/research focus.Diplomacy/economic buffs. Defensive.
Bosmer
  • Green Pact-Primal/military focus, adheres to green pact. Necro-like mechanics of gaining resources through killing. Fun plans.
  • ‘salad-eaters’?- Compromising, economic/trading....Not sure.
Khajiit
  • Annequina- Military/partisan focus. Expansion.
  • Pelinquin- Economic focus. Skooma trade and religion. Unification.

Argonians
  • Root folk- Tribal/warrior culture. Xenophobic. Devided, diverse. Focus on living inside Black Marsh.
  • Branch folk- Adaptive, dynamic, expansive. Focus on bringing Argonian living conditions to the rest of Tamriel.

For all we know about the races.. There is so very little that is assured for the political landscape of the provinces for the time after the Keyes books. If only we had Rumors like those in Oblivion, of people talking about the other provinces. Makes Skyrim feel that much more of a backwater place.

So there's a lot to think about. I have some rough ideas about the directions to take for more races (could really use some help with the Argonians, Dunmer and Altmer). But would love your general input and ideas for what paths and cultures to specialize in which directions and perhaps ideas as to what the racial buffs might be! I'm doing the tedious work of setting it up now so we can do the fun part later on.
I'll post some screenshots of new unit visuals and a map update later on in the weekend.
Let me know what you think so far!
 
Last edited:

Artfactial

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Update: Map editor Memory crashes on every save again...

Edit: Alright, have it going again for the moment. So when you have incorrect or too heavy meshes in any of your custom structures, regardless of you actually having them on the map, the editor will overload when saving the map. Go figure.

Edit 2:Was able to complete the first pass on Skyrim. The game crashed on saving the first turn during playtesting, however. Most probably due to memory shortage, no log.
Will try more tomorrow.
 
Last edited:

Refineus

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It sad to hear about the memory problems. I never experienced them myself yet. I usally work with two or three level editors open at once and never ran into this issues. Sometimes have level editor on lowest quality helps alot.

I hope it works out for you
 

Artfactial

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Thanks.
I am running the editor at lowest as well. I am working on a slightly bigger than XL map, sure, but the file isn't at 7mb's yet.
I'm trying to find back the possible memory tweak that was posted with one of the latest patches but the old forums are offline again.

I have been searching for a possible memoryleak or anything, but no luck.
My MapEditor usage is at ~3,330mb RAM when first booted and around 3,520 mb's when the map file is loaded. Are those normal numbers?
I can understand that the software reaches 4Gb when saving the file, I suppose. But I'm not sure that would be the case for the actual game save.
I'm going to try and clean up any loose ends and unfinished additions, see if that smooths out the process.