I am playing Oceania, but I can’t help you with that–I haven’t yet had to actually ship any troops over the water.
My first Oceania game ended up feeling very cramped. I added “Nemesis” as a worldgen option, and I started a relatively snaky continent with both the other majors. As a result, my blackmailing nemesis declared war on my very early (despite acceding to all their demands). Nevertheless, I managed to get on friendly terms with the other major and build up enough tanks to roll over the nemesis. I made friends with one of the two or three MTHs but didn’t do anything with it other than sell it a bunch of IPs (shipbuilding capacity, I guess). After that it was pretty straightforward to roll over the other major and get enough cities for victory.
I rolled up another game on a medium map–I’ve always played small maps because I get so excited when starting a game that I forget to look for the map size option. I also added “Nemesis” and this time upped the difficulty to hard. Furthermore, I decided to try my best to be bad and focus on autocracy, and maybe fist and government, too. This time there were no majors nearby on my start, and after expanding through two minors (some peaceful farmers and some really annoying doodoo-heads) I found a strip of coast where two majors had founded cities across the ocean from their homelands. They’re both theocratic blackmailers, and whatever religious schism separated them in their homelands they brought with them to my continent as they were going back and forth at each other… until I got my tanks together and rolled over the nearer one (and made peace with the other). I don’t think either of them are the nemesis–I only saw one unit of tanks and not terribly impressive infantry. (Maybe it’s tough to get tanks across the ocean.)
That was pretty cool from an AI perspective. Since I took the city they’ve been sending wave after wave of amphibious assaults at it, and I chew up 2000 infantry a pop, and maybe once every ten times they get a single kill. Somewhat less impressive AI programming, but maybe they have the bodies to spare. I’ve now moved my armor to the other end of my continent to sweep away the aliens that have recently been making threatening noises. (Though, really, who’s the alien here?)
Playing on hard is, well, harder! I’m very pressed for PPs now, and the budget was touch-and-go for a while. Fortunately I am again selling shipbuilding services to (now several) nearby MTHs. The main issue I’m facing is metal–no mines, and only a couple recycling options, one of which just dried up. Desperately trying to get soil demetalization, but research is also a bit slower on hard (or so it seems).
I didn’t actually need it to ship troops over the water(I don’t even know if there are other continents on this map), I have an asshole minor on a small island just offshore that keeps naval invading me. In that case it took a chokepoint between my capital and a smaller city I had founded so I needed to figure out how to keep things in supply while the land connection was broken.
The red circle shows where they cut me off and I needed to keep Chilly(it’s in the jungle so thanks game for an ironic name) in supply. Most of my troops were off fighting the previous owner of Avigare who had declared war on me. With early game tech that was a long siege of the land around their city. But I’ve taken it now and have this nice open agricultural heartland and I’m trying to expand south into very rough forested and mountainous terrain now. While that war was going on the Sizza Republic to my south(yellow territory) expanded like crazy. We’re friends for now but obviously that’ll be a later challenge to take them on. I’m enjoying this a bunch too despite the wonkiness. I think the MTH stuff will be nice one I understand it better. I don’t think naval invasions should be able to stay supplied as long as they do if the invader can’t take/build a port, though.
Ah, but in @abrandt’s screenshot it’s labeled “Jerk Minor”, which makes me think of someone working in the Cajun spice mines.
Though I am impressed to hear of a minor faction launching a naval invasion! Did you declare war on them at some point?
Finally my own enemy seems to have run out of bodies to throw at the beaches of Bepiport. Or maybe their contract with the MTH just expired. I’ve just about exterminated one of the xeno factions to the south, and I’ve cited a precious ruins tile in the territory of another one, so I’m figuring out where to found a new city nearby. I’m also planning to take the other city belonging to a major on my continent–I satisfied a demand for recon, and discovered a wild 3-way (?) war ongoing overseas. I guess whatever religious dispute the theocratic regimes have is serious! It does make the end-turn replays rather lengthy.
One interesting thing for me this game is militia–one of my factions has been giving me plenty of Militia Project cards so all of my cities have a level 3 militia asset and I’ve got a fair number of those troops around. Not great for expanding, but good for fighting off the wildlife–there is now amphibious wildlife that has a super annoying tendency to wash up over the narrow supply lines squeezed between the mountains and the sea. And I can’t surround and exterminate them because they just retreat to the sea! So I’ve got a bunch of militia units strung out along the route. I also discovered that militia will use models you’ve designed–I never knew this before because by the time I was designing tanks my militia ratings had tanked (har har). Nice that they have a real tank instead of an “improvised” one! I am regretting making the conquered theocratic city into an incorporated territory because I’m curious what kind of “monk” militia battalions I’d have got out of them.
I did not. They declared war on me very early on and immediately sent an invasion force. Really not sure how they landed so many troops so quickly considering those things are limited by how many logistics points your ports generate. Maybe it’s a special island minor thing that they start well developed with a high level port?
My map is weird. As far as I can tell it must just be three majors, the one that was right next to me that attacked me early on and is now but a memory and the much larger one to the south that took advantage of that war. I’ve expanded to the east now and absorbed a couple of minors along the way. Seems likely it’s just one giant continent. The two bodies of water on the right side of my map turned out to just be isolated seas. That expansion has been slow going though since everything away from the coast is forested and there is a spine of mountains the whole way. In order to get a railroad out to the absorbed minors I had to build it all the way around a coastal peninsula since you apparently can’t build rails over high mountains. Was a good use case for an MTH contract, though, as I was able to keep them supplied over water. Trying to run supply lines over a bunch of islands seems like it would be really tedious, though, as you can’t just renew a transport contract when it’s up but have to go through the multi-step process of figuring out what contract expired and setting it back up again. Yet another example of me loving this game despite the hostile UX.
I don’t think I’ve ever seen this. I keep getting pro-militia events but they always want me to spend money I don’t have.
I didn’t even know that minors could declare war on you. What settings is your game on?
My first Oceania game was like that. Two majors + me cramped on one end of a continent that connected via a very long and scraggly tail to the other continent that was only minors. It was largely flat and not too forested (or at least I had plenty of metal + IP to build rails through the forests by the time I got there), though, so expansion wasn’t too bad.
My current map is very different; I don’t have the full picture yet (thinking about the complaint upthread about not knowing even what the landmasses are in a far-future colony) but there are some big islands that have one or two majors each on them. Looking to be very interesting.
So true. It seems weird that there’s so much effort making sea shipping so exotic and difficult to use, when that’s been such a fundamental method of supply for nearly all of recorded history. I have plenty of oil in my current game (literally running out of room to store it), so I’m considering building a ridiculous six-engine transport plane and using that. (Though right now I don’t even have an air force council because I don’t want to divert the BPs…)
I haven’t clicked through all the screens to build a full picture, but I’m 90% sure it’s because one or two of my leading factions are pro-militia and giving me the militia cards. I suspect it’s because I chose an autocracy / fist start.
Another “trick” I figured out is that you can disband units and send their troops back to the SHQ (seems obvious, right?) and then use those to raise an army. I had five or so independent light armor units before I’d operationalized the light armor OOB, but it was easy to disband them and re-raise them as an army. Not too efficient in terms of time (or logistics or PP) but pretty handy.
Human history also doesn’t involve tiny city-states developing in total isolation with absolute ignorance of and technological separation from their near neighbors, either, so maybe it’s better if we don’t imagine Shadow Empire’s world as having anything in common with human history.
That’s a fair point, but a lot of this is clearly inspired by WWII (and slightly later) tech and military gear, so it feels like a noticeable gap to me.
Yes, there are tons of holes you can poke in the “realism” of the game–after all, it has walkers and mutants and laser tanks but no spaceships or, uh, maps from a hundred years ago. But there’s a very clear sense of verisimilitude with that epoch of (actual) history, and the lack anything naval always felt like a huge hole there. Now with Oceania they’re closing part of that hole–naval logistics–but it still feels a little underbaked. Personally I’m hoping that they continue on it and eventually we get to build our own battleships. (Though not before they fix the model design UI!)
Don’t get me wrong, I love the game, and I’m happy to plunk down my $10 for the expansion.
Oh yeah, my suggestion should be read as, uh, satire, I guess. The game has a lot of neat stuff going on but is severely lacking in the verisimilitude department. I think Vic really needs an outside perspective or at the very least a historical setting to keep him grounded, otherwise he apparently comes up with these cool ideas that just sort of float around freely in possibility space and don’t add up to a coherent whole.
I think this is very much a YMMV moment–personally the “fighting WWII with laser guns on post-apocalyptic space colonies” very much works for me. I just an event where an advisor requested his son be exempted from the military (I wasn’t aware we had a draft, but whatever) and I thought “Oh yeah, getting sent to the western front with those aliens ambushing from the forests is a nightmare.” But obviously there’s a huge hodgepodge of stuff in there, so it’s easy for me to see how it wouldn’t work for someone else.
First of all a big thanks to everybody buying Shadow Empire and/or Oceania during the last 2 weeks. It is much appreciated and there is plenty of feedback coming in! Positive and of course negative too. I am listening to both and will make adjustments and fixes where needed.
My plan is to share an outline of my development plans for Shadow Empire in a week or two. In the meantime I am still shuffling priorities to find the best angle of attack possible. So don’t be surprised if I am slower than expected. Shuffling takes time, you know…
I can already share that I have planned quite a lot of work on the Core game which will slowly be moving towards 1.3 over time.
My aim is to address all the persistent major complaints that are specific. (I am not redoing the engine)
At the moment I am working on an optional Blueprints feature that will help you design efficient new Model Types with much less clicking. Especially for aircraft design this will be a great tool. It should make an appearance in the open beta early next week or late this week.
After that I also want to address economical/bureaucratic snowballing, some minimal Planet-Gen customization options, AI using aircraft better and more often, a new “midcore” Logistics rules option that will be usable by the AI and much more. And in no particular order.
I am also looking towards the possibility of doing a second DLC. I have already done a poll question on that topic during Christmas.
But I want to ask again now. I have also added some thematic. The choice below is very binary and no information about implementation is given on purpose. I just want to know which thematic appeals the most. I’ll take the outcome of this poll along in my decisions.
I would prefer a possible 2nd DLC to be focused on:
I do not want you to do any DLC, but focus on the main game instead
I want my naval units!
Whatever you think is best
Voted Politics (which is currently winning). The faction stuff is there, but there isn’t much reason to interact with it beyond getting certain cards and making sure you don’t piss off your CAP V leader. It would be good to have a more rewarding system.
Thanks for the link! I voted for naval units, and my second choice would be trade. I think the strength of the game is the units and fighting, followed by logistics and production, and I’d like to see him lean into those strengths more. Naval units, because I don’t think we need more complexity in the battles we have, but different types of battles would be a good way to capitalize on the systems there. Trade, because while you see it happening with traders and the like, it would be good to be able to supplement your production more directly.
I feel like leaning more into politics is not what I’m interested in; I agree with you that there’s not much reason to interact with the factions but my conclusion is the opposite–more interaction there would be distracting instead of interesting. If it were wrapped together with better diplomacy I might change my mind.
I love this game so much, but hoo boy is the logistics counterintuitive sometimes, verging on broken. I’ve got the pattern down for MTH recon contract → MTH transport contract → invasion + MTH makeshift port → slowly expand and build up logistics. It’s a little… overwrought? I wish we could just build a navy ourselves, but whatever.
So now I’m playing around with a second SHQ–never done that before–on another island. Some predictably dumb stuff like “Oh, you didn’t transfer any energy or oil to your new SHQ? Well, none of your buildings will work next turn, which means two turns before you get logistics points back.” That, at least, I can RP as a typical bureaucratic clusterfuck, because it’s technically my fault. But now I’ve got a tank unit that for some reason is trying to get supply from a hex five tiles away even though it’s sitting on a perfectly cromulent and well-supplied road. If any Shadow Empire experts want to take a look, I posted in the matrix forums here.
Somehow the militia got their hands on an automated anti-tank turret. Splendid, if they ever get attacked by tanks. Somewhat less useful for their actual job of chasing off wildlife, since now they can only be strategic-moved.
Victor’s current planned roadmap for Shadow Empires:
I could be secretive and only announce things when I am a 100% sure, but that would keep everybody in the dark completely. So please do consider this “development plan sketch” like at best 50% sure.
Heck, the features could still change, the order of development and DLCs planned could change, even the actual DLC themes could still change. Feedback is coming in non-stop and I am flexible until committed. But leaving all those disclaimers aside this sketch does give you an insight into what I currently have on my drawing board.
I wonder if that STARFIRE bit there at the end really is him thinking of taking things into space.