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[Part II] Faction: The Chinese (Song Dynasty)
wolflance posted a topic in 1,000 A.D.I saw Ayakashi's great post about the Tang Dynasty and think that the Chinese faction wouldn't be complete without Song Dynasty for part II of Millennium A.D. Here's my proposal: Song Dynasty (960 - 1279AD) Brief history After a period of upheaval and unrest that was the turbulent Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms, the Song Dynasty rose up and reunite the Chinese people once again (to certain extent). A period of relative peace soon followed, and Chinese cultural, economic and scientific advancements were at all time heights during the Song Dynasty. Nevertheless, the Chinese have to constantly struggle with the even more powerful Khitan Liao Dynasty, the Jurchen Jin Dynasty, the Tangut Western Xia Dynasty, and eventually, faced their demise at the hand of the Mongols. The Chinese would not endure their Mongol overlord for long, and quickly overthrow the Yuan Dynasty to form the Ming Dynasty. Gameplay Attrition warfare: Turtling and booming. With reform, Song player can adjust their military to focus on: * Gigantic swarms of cheap infantry unit. * Early access of expensive foreign elite units. * Late game high tech units and champions. Song Dynasty is even more catered for turtle player than its predecessor, the Tang Dynasty. While Tang Dynasty was militarily strong, with a fierce contingent of light cavalry backed by very competent infantry, the same cannot be said for the Song Dynasty. At this period the Chinese were constantly troubled by severe lack of horse, so their army was almost entirely infantry-based. Low social status of soldiers and the tendency to distrust or even execute capable military commander certainly did not help matters. In stark contrast to their weak army, Chinese advanced tremendously in almost every field related to economy: Agriculture, metallurgy, as well as commerce and foreign trade. Major exports were silk, porcelain and tea. (The claim that Song Dynasty had 80% GDP share of the world is totally false, however). Also around this time we saw large-scale use of gunpowder weapons for the first time, both by the Chinese and their enemies. Due to their maritime trade, Song Chinese were very advanced in naval and navigation technology, inventing watertight compartment as well as utilizing paddle-wheel warships (and a blue water navy) on large scale. Civilization Traits * Imperial society - The Chinese did not live in a feudal society. Song civilization start with the usual civic center building instead of castle/fortress typical of Millennium A.D. * Forbidden army of eight hundred thousand - The Song Dynasty was able to maintain a truly mind-boggling amount of full-time professional troops, but not all of them combat worthy. Most Song infantry are cheap, train fast, and extremely tough for their price. However, they cannot perform economic task. * Defennd oriented - The Song Dynasty defensive strategy was heavily reliant on passive defense and developed superior defensive construction as a result. Civilization Bonuses Advanced Agriculture 1 History: Chinese mastery in agriculture was unsurpassed up until early modern period (don't quote me, but they were quite far ahead of the rest of world during our time frame AFAIK). They had farming treaties, multiple-tube seed drills and curved iron crankshaft plow, to name but a few. (And these are just the inventions of the previous dynasties) Effect: Increase farm yield. Silk & Porcelain Trade History: The main export of the Chinese since the Han Dynasty. Effect: 15% gain to both trader and merchant ship. Civilization Disadvantages * Overpriced cavalry: Cavalry of the Song Dynasty are massively overpriced, but only of moderate quality. * Slow infantry: Infantry of the Song Dynasty are weighted down by their extra-heavy armor. * Slow expansion: The general slowness of the Song army means that they also cannot expand effectively. However, their overwhelmingly powerful economic technologies ensure that they stay ahead of their opponents economically without expanding territory. Team Bonuses Tribute Mission History: The Chinese were no longer the dominant superpower of the Far East that could automatically attract tribute from the so-called 'lesser' countries. Tribute mission of this period was useful to put up the facade that Song Dynasty was still powerful and, more importantly, to maintain foreign relationship as (more or less) equals. Although Song Dynasty was the one that was receiving tribute, they tend to give more than they receive. Effect: Allied traders and merchant ships gain +60% trade profit when trading with the Song civilization. Not applicable to Song civilization itself. Researched Unique Technologies Odometer and South-Pointing Chariot History: The combination of odometer and compass makes charting map much easier. Effect: All Song building and land unit gain +25% vision range. Advanced Agriculture 2 History: During the Northern Song, introduction of foreign crop from Champa (modern day Vietnam), Korea, India and Middle East greatly improved food producton, while the invention of Yang Ma (秧馬) or 'Seedling Horse' made planting and harvesting crops faster and easier. Effect: Increase farm yield even more and reduce harvest intervals. Stack with Advanced Agriculture 1. Tea-Horse Trade History: The Chinese traded tea for horses. Effect: Reduce training cost of cavalry. (To other civilizations, this could be a borderline OP upgrade. To the Chinese, this only makes their cavalry somewhat more viable.) Gunpowder Formula History: The first detailed formula of gunpowder was recorded in the Northern Song military encyclopedia Wujing Zongyao. Effect: Song Dynasty siege weapons gain explosive ammunition. Double-piston Flamethrower History: The Chinese invented a variant of the Greek Fire that can spill out continuous flame. Effect: Song Dynasty defensive tower gains a devastating flame attack. Reform Technologies <Reform 1> New Policies/Wang Anshi Reform (王安石變法) History: A massive centralization project conducted by Northern Song minister Wang Anshi. Effect: * Reduce cost of farm plot. * Increase house capacity. * Increase trade efficiency. * Reduce cost of all military unit. * Reduce cost of military research. * Civic center, house and defensive tower gain additional arrow attack. <Reform 2> Alliance of the Sea (海上之盟) History: Northern Song Dynasty formed an alliance with the Jin Dynasty in order to destroy the Liao. Effect: Access to powerful but expensive Jin Dynasty units. (Ironically, this has nothing to do with navy) <Reform 3> Jian Yan Exodus (建炎南渡) History: Northern Song Dynasty was destroyed, only to be replaced by Southern Song Dynasty. Effect: Drastic restructuring of the entire army and access to many new weapon, technologies and upgrades. Unlock technology: Advanced Agriculture 3 Unlock technology: Coke Fuel Unlock technology: Watertight Compartment Proposed Unit Roster Support Unit Female Citizen Military Laborer (廂兵) - Only unit in the entire civilization that can build military building. Trader Merchant Ship Fishing Boat Healer - (Personally I oppose to the "religious personnel as healer" approach. While this is somewhat true for Christian faith, Chinese medicine for the most part was very secularized.) Forbidden Army (禁軍) * Forbidden Army units cannot gather resource or construct building. Spearman (槍手) - General purpose infantry. Counter cavalry. Glaiveman (刀斧手) - Fragile (by Chinese standard, they are still heavily armored infantry) anti-everything heavy hitter. Vulnerable to ranged unit. Javelin Pavisier (鏢牌手) - Very tough meatshield/tarpit infanty. Counter ranged unit. Archer (弓手) Crossbowman (弩手) Cavalry (馬軍) Siege Weapon Whirlwind Trebuchet (旋風車砲) Siege Crossbow (床子弩) Warship Paddle Wheel Tower Ship Hero Unit Di Qing (狄青) Yue Fei (岳飛) *Third Hero TBD <Reform 2 Unit> Jurchen "Iron Pagoda" Superheavy Cataphract (鐵浮屠) Jurchen Dismounted "Iron Pagoda" Cataphract Jurchen Medium Cavalry (拐子馬) <Reform 3 Unit> Bamboo Gunner (突火槍) War Wagon (如意戰車) Counterweight Trebuchet (回回砲) Heavy War Junk (尖底海船) Ironclad Rammer Warship (鐵壁鏵嘴船)
Although France is a civilization that is confirmed to appear in Part II, and I am certainly not the most qualified person in European history, I think the 'standard' AoE-ish gameplay couldn't do justice to this very unique and fascinating culture. Although I put France in the title of this thread, this is actually just me randomly throwing out ideas on how a feudal society could be represented in a RTS game like 0ad. Some of these ideas might be unfeasible, overpowered/penalize the faction too much, or could be made into something better, so suggestions are welcomed. As I said before, I am not very good in French history, so I might (very possibly) get some historical facts wrong, please correct me if you find any errors. Brief History http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/France_in_the_Middle_Ages Wikipedia do it better. Gameplay Most ‘European’ factions can be considered 'standard' or 'balanced' , although I believe France lean heavily towards melee cavalry (knight) and turtling. Civ Feature *Feudal Society: The 'Civic Center' of this civilization is a castle. It doubles as a fortress. *Serfdom: All 'Female citizen' and 'citizen soldier' unit of this faction (except healer and trader) cannot move out of player's territory (or receive a heavy penalty if they do leave). Civ Bonus *Retinue: Every knightly unit of this civilization will bring along several (random 0~3) retinue unit with them, free of charge. *Couched lance charge: Gives very high damage bonus on knightly unit during charging attack. Civ Disadvantage *Due to serfdom, this civilization cannot perform early rush/economic raiding effectively. *Weak infantry early on (peasant levy and all that), but can be mitigated with reform tech. *Diverse but generally lackluster navy. Special Building/Tech *Muster for war: A special tech that can be researched repeatedly. Lift the penalty on citizen soldier temporary (see serfdom). *Tournament Field: Allows for a special 'Hastilude' tech that can be researched repeatedly. Each successful research gives promotion to a random knightly unit. *Steel Prod: Increase damage of crossbowman unit. (Available to all three reform tech). Reform Tech 1: The Crusade The 'Expansionist' reform that gives (relatively cheap) crusader knights, better infantry, counterweight trebuchet, and better resource management (thanks to Knight Templar and Chambres des comptes). Reform Tech 2: Hundred Years War The 'Defensive' reform (It was really a series of raids and siege after all) that gives you Dismounted Knight, Genoese crossbowmen, Pot-de-fer (arrow-shooting cannon) and bombard, and bonus in castle and defensive structure. Reform Tech 3: Compagnie d'ordonnance The 'Technological' reform that gives the strongest melee cavalry in the mod (probably) - the full plate armoured Gendarmes, as well as Franc-archer militia, handheld firearms, and advanced cannon such as breech-loading Veuglaires, culverins and so on.