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Acheron

Is there any way to buff same-sex hero partners?

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KestrelPi brought up in another thread that same-sex partners are almost never a good idea right now. I mentioned this in a pre-Beta thread, and Brad confirmed in that thread, that a min/maxer will almost never use same sex partners based on the current rules.

Right now, they simply aren't viable. The only reason to use them for gameplay purposes is that you have two same sex heroes with great personality traits and horrible genes, you don't really have alternative options for regent/partner, and you don't need too many new heroes. Even then, you've got to make liberal use of the adoption chalice power, which is very expensive compared to the alternative of simply recruiting new heroes and hoping for a few good ones to start a new bloodline.

One sexuality-neutral way to make them more viable is to slightly modify the way XP is passed down in the generations. What if couples have a certain amount of XP that they give children each day, based on their level (which I think is how the current system works), but the XP pool gets split amongst all pre-15 year olds currently being raised in the keep (or at least there is some penalty for each kid after the first). It kind of makes thematic sense because parents are going to be able to spend more time on an only child than they will on 5 kids. So super fertile heroes are good because you get lots of kids, but their children will be slightly less powerful than if they were raised separately. It's not too much of a hit because usually there are only 1-3 trainees in a keep at any given time. But at the same time, it means that if you decide to have a same-sex couple and adopt one child, they will pass on more XP to the child than your average hetero couple. Not directly because they are gay, but because they are focusing only on one child.

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Thanks for posting this.

I definitely think this is bound up in the issues in my other thread about adoption. Adoption seems like a good way to prevent bloodline emergencies, but not a very good way to experiment with same sex or infertile couples.

I quite like the idea that families with fewer children get a boost to how much XP they throw out, because then you have a quality/quantity trade off to consider, and it makes quite a lot of thematic sense. My worry is that it's something I think might be a little tricky to convey the advantage of in game, but it might be one thing that makes adoption work well as a strategy for the occasional generation.

As you rightly say, it wouldn't work to literally have a buff for same sex couples, or infertile ones, because that would be hard to justify. But there might be things they can do to make unconventional pairings more viable as a strategic option in the game without upsetting the balance of the game very much. But those also have to be trade-offs that are clear to the player. (And ultimately, for balance reasons, fertile bloodlines will always be the fastest and by far the most common way to get heroes)

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Not a bad idea. I don't have much to add, other than I could dig something like this.

Smiles

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It would definitely encourage some high level strategy, e.g. deciding whether it's worth going for super high chance of children but taking a hit on XP once those numbers build, for the chance of a better spread of traits, or going for slightly lower.

It could go something like:

1 child: Child gets 1.2 x XP multiplier

2 children: Children get 1.1 XP multiplier

3 children: Children get 1.0 XP multiplier

4 children: 0.9, etc.

My main worry is how all these sorts of tradeoffs get conveyed in the interface. I guess you could give the child a status of 'Only Child' or 'x Siblings' which would help alleviate it. But still, I never really read those statuses.

One problem with it might be that it would mean the first child and last child of any house would always get the biggest XP bonus because they'd probably go at least a couple of years as an only child. but that might not actually work out too bad. And in later years, when fertility lowers, it's pretty common for houses only to have 1 child going, so it might not be enough of an advantage to actually make a difference in the grand scheme of things. But it might be the sort of thing that works in conjunction with slightly improved adoption mechanics.

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It would definitely encourage some high level strategy, e.g. deciding whether it's worth going for super high chance of children but taking a hit on XP once those numbers build, for the chance of a better spread of traits, or going for slightly lower.

It could go something like:

1 child: Child gets 1.2 x XP multiplier

2 children: Children get 1.1 XP multiplier

3 children: Children get 1.0 XP multiplier

4 children: 0.9, etc.

My main worry is how all these sorts of tradeoffs get conveyed in the interface. I guess you could give the child a status of 'Only Child' or 'x Siblings' which would help alleviate it. But still, I never really read those statuses.

One problem with it might be that it would mean the first child and last child of any house would always get the biggest XP bonus because they'd probably go at least a couple of years as an only child. but that might not actually work out too bad. And in later years, when fertility lowers, it's pretty common for houses only to have 1 child going, so it might not be enough of an advantage to actually make a difference in the grand scheme of things. But it might be the sort of thing that works in conjunction with slightly improved adoption mechanics.

I like this idea!

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I've said this before, but same sex partners - while an admirable goal - are a really awkward thematic fit for Massive Chalice. It's a game about being a eugenicist fascist overlord. With a big emphasis on productive marriages and no element of happy marriages in sight, it's sort of inevitable that same-sex marriage be comparatively worse unless you invent new rules for how childbirth works within the Massive Chalice universe. But the current system is so punitive that it pretty much sends the message of "You will doom the kingdom if you endorse gay marriage." It's counter-productive to the original goal, and if the system isn't improved then I'd honestly prefer it be removed entirely.

As for actual suggestions...

I strongly dislike the XP-sharing system described above, for two reasons. First off, I would go so far as to say that the core hook of Massive Chalice is the Bloodline/Trait management. Putting in a mechanic that directly discourages experimentation hamstrings the game's biggest strength. Second, you can't actually control how many kids a family has, so even if a couple has an awesome child on their first try, they're going to choke the XP stream when they have further, weaker children. In my current playthrough, I had an Alchemist couple with 11 kids. That's a historically productive family, and I'd hate to see the house suffer as a result.

In the other thread, Kestrel suggested an automatically-restocking adoption agency, providing some new blood on a throttle without eating up your research time. I can get behind that - genetic diversity is a both a plus and a minus, since you're potentially reintroducing negative traits at the same time as positive ones. It stumbles a little bit in that it raises the bar overall rather than closing the gap between homo/hetero pairings, but again, it's difficult to accomplish that without transparently game-y, thematically dubious mechanics like "Gay couples can adopt more often because shut up is why." It fixes the perceived problem, but it's a bit of a kludge.

A central pillar behind allowing gay marriage is freedom of choice, and I think a lot of the difficulty boils down to the fact that Massive Chalice heroes don't have any choices or wills of their own. As much as the Chalice advises you to treat them with dignity and respect rather than as a sack of numbers and traits, they're sacks of numbers and traits. (Somewhat problematically, you get a glimmer of free will in the "Standard and somebody have a baby" event, but there's no option to treat all parties with dignity and respect. Mixed messages!) I think you need to attack this at the source by playing up "in love with Hero X" Personalities that encourage specific pairings, and that Personality should arise for both same- and different-sex heroes.

And it wouldn't need to show up on every single unit - call it "Star Crossed Lovers" or something to emphasize that it's an uncommonly powerful bond. Maybe it turns the couple into a package deal - if you appoint one as regent, the other's coming along as partner - or maybe it just gives better fertility and/or Personality inheritance in reflection of a happier home life. That gives a little more dare-I-say-Personality to the heroes themselves while facilitating gay pairings.

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In another thread, someone came up with the idea of an "in love with X" bonus personality trait for certain heroes which could provide certain bonuses to the children if they marry "X". This trait could be used with the same sex couple idea as well. A certain percentage of the time when this personality trait is generated on a hero, the person they are in love with could be someone of the same sex. This combined with something like the system above could give some interesting narrative choices that would give an extra dimension to pairing up couples.

The bonus to kids could be a boost to passed on XP or improvement of some base stats.

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I've said this before, but same sex partners - while an admirable goal - are a really awkward thematic fit for Massive Chalice. It's a game about being a eugenicist fascist overlord. With a big emphasis on productive marriages and no element of happy marriages in sight, it's sort of inevitable that same-sex marriage be comparatively worse unless you invent new rules for how childbirth works within the Massive Chalice universe.

Hmm. I wouldn't go that far. The reason that they decided to put it in, after all, wasn't anything to do with 'pressure' (I offered it up as a suggestion, and they were on board) but actually, because it just gives more options for continuing a bloodline, so it adds another element of strategy. So that suggests to me they DO consider it thematically appropriate. If it was working as intended, it would be another tool in your box, one that you can't rely on heavily, but still rewards experimentation. Kind of like a wildcard option, though not quite as wild.

As a side note, I also take issue with the idead that this is a game about being a "a eugenicist fascist overlord" Eugenics? Yeah, kinda. See my post about that, but I feel like in practice it feels less like eugenics than I expected, partially thanks to all the interesting personality stuff going on, and the element of unpredictability. But fascist overlord? I don't see what fascism has to do with it - there aren't really any themes of nationalism running through the game, and while it is authoritarian, it only seems authoritarian with regard to the hero families fighting the war, you seem to have very little to do with the day to day politics of the kingdom.

Anyway, on the suggestions:

I strongly dislike the XP-sharing system described above, for two reasons. First off, I would go so far as to say that the core hook of Massive Chalice is the Bloodline/Trait management. Putting in a mechanic that directly discourages experimentation hamstrings the game’s biggest strength. Second, you can’t actually control how many kids a family has, so even if a couple has an awesome child on their first try, they’re going to choke the XP stream when they have further, weaker children. In my current playthrough, I had an Alchemist couple with 11 kids. That’s a historically productive family, and I’d hate to see the house suffer as a result.

I think the suggestion is that the bonus/penalty would affect active trainees only. Like a single trainee wouldn't be affected by the fact that they have siblings that have been trained and are now grown. And as I see it, the affect would be slight - a balance tweak, not a complete game-changer.

In the other thread, Kestrel suggested an automatically-restocking adoption agency, providing some new blood on a throttle without eating up your research time. I can get behind that - genetic diversity is a both a plus and a minus, since you’re potentially reintroducing negative traits at the same time as positive ones. It stumbles a little bit in that it raises the bar overall rather than closing the gap between homo/hetero pairings, but again, it’s difficult to accomplish that without transparently game-y, thematically dubious mechanics like “Gay couples can adopt more often because shut up is why.” It fixes the perceived problem, but it’s a bit of a kludge.

I don't understand this point, I think. I definitely don't think anyone wants a bonus that would only apply to same sex partners. I get the bit about raising the bar over all but I'm not sure it would do all that much. I think Adoption should be more attractive, but they could easily balance that against other factors. Let's say there were 1.5 adoptees every 10 years. If you adopted every single child (which would be very unlikely, since some of them are gonna be duds), that would amount to 45 extra babies throughout the entire 300 year campaign. I think that's a very small portion of the overall baby count. You could probably, if you wanted to, counter it by very slightly, almost imperceptibly, lowering the birth rate stats elsewhere, and then it would be balanced.

Aside from those points, I do think this point is REALLY good:

As much as the Chalice advises you to treat them with dignity and respect rather than as a sack of numbers and traits, they’re sacks of numbers and traits. (Somewhat problematically, you get a glimmer of free will in the “Standard and somebody have a baby” event, but there’s no option to treat all parties with dignity and respect. Mixed messages!)

If the chalice is saying don't just treat them like numbers, let's have an in-universe reason not to treat them like numbers, that plays into strategic considerations. I'd definitely consider putting two female people together if I could see that they had an existing bond, and that meant that they would, say, give more XP to their adopted children. But it would still be about me making that choice, that consideration. It doesn't even have to be called 'love' if that bothers people. It could be called 'bond of friendship' and it could develop randomly, or could develop as a result of two heroes fighting together. Imagine two heroes fighting together, getting a bond of friendship (regardless of gender) and then retiring both of them to a keep.

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In the other thread, Kestrel suggested an automatically-restocking adoption agency, providing some new blood on a throttle without eating up your research time. I can get behind that - genetic diversity is a both a plus and a minus, since you’re potentially reintroducing negative traits at the same time as positive ones. It stumbles a little bit in that it raises the bar overall rather than closing the gap between homo/hetero pairings, but again, it’s difficult to accomplish that without transparently game-y, thematically dubious mechanics like “Gay couples can adopt more often because shut up is why.” It fixes the perceived problem, but it’s a bit of a kludge.

I don't understand this point, I think. I definitely don't think anyone wants a bonus that would only apply to same sex partners.

I do want there to be a mechanical justification for to same-sex partners. It shouldn't always be The Wrong Answer, even if infertility is a big strike against in a game specifically about reproduction and heredity. It doesn't need to be The Right Answer in a broad set of circumstances (and again, it's difficult to conceive an appropriate bonus that would push it into that territory) but I'd like for it to occasionally be on the table as one of many viable options. As is, gay partners are strictly for novelty or Self-Imposed-Hard-Mode purposes, and the adoption agency doesn't change that even if it mitigates the damage.

How would people feel if straight/fertile couples just could not adopt, full stop? It'd characterize "normal" bloodlines as fundamentally haughty ("We don't mix with commoners") in a way I'm a little sour on, but solidifies a niche role for gay couples in terms of introducing genetic diversity for better and worse. This would also allow you to totally separate adoption from research by simply establishing a flat adoption rate similar to the fertility rate. I'd still prefer the "Lovers" personality stuff, FWIW, but this is a more dramatic move that at least doesn't strike me as completely terrible?

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In the other thread, Kestrel suggested an automatically-restocking adoption agency, providing some new blood on a throttle without eating up your research time. I can get behind that - genetic diversity is a both a plus and a minus, since you’re potentially reintroducing negative traits at the same time as positive ones. It stumbles a little bit in that it raises the bar overall rather than closing the gap between homo/hetero pairings, but again, it’s difficult to accomplish that without transparently game-y, thematically dubious mechanics like “Gay couples can adopt more often because shut up is why.” It fixes the perceived problem, but it’s a bit of a kludge.

I don't understand this point, I think. I definitely don't think anyone wants a bonus that would only apply to same sex partners.

I do want there to be a mechanical justification for to same-sex partners. It shouldn't always be The Wrong Answer, even if infertility is a big strike against in a game specifically about reproduction and heredity. It doesn't need to be The Right Answer in a broad set of circumstances (and again, it's difficult to conceive an appropriate bonus that would push it into that territory) but I'd like for it to occasionally be on the table as one of many viable options. As is, gay partners are strictly for novelty or Self-Imposed-Hard-Mode purposes, and the adoption agency doesn't change that even if it mitigates the damage.

How would people feel if straight/fertile couples just could not adopt, full stop? It'd characterize "normal" bloodlines as fundamentally haughty ("We don't mix with commoners") in a way I'm a little sour on, but solidifies a niche role for gay couples in terms of introducing genetic diversity for better and worse. This would also allow you to totally separate adoption from research by simply establishing a flat adoption rate similar to the fertility rate. I'd still prefer the "Lovers" personality stuff, FWIW, but this is a more dramatic move that at least doesn't strike me as completely terrible?

I totally agree with the sentiment that the goal here is 'occasionally viable alternative' rather than 'the punishing option' :)

I'm not sure I'm down with straight/fertile couples not being able to adopt. The reason being, that there are these two ostentible uses for adoption: the stuff we're talking about, which is a way to diversify the range of available partners, and the other thing, which is working well right now, which is 'as an emergency option when all else fails.' Or in other words as a failsafe against losing a bloodline because they happened to leave no heirs for whatever reason.

I agree that something more interesting like the lovers (I prefer to think about it as 'friendship bonds' as that's more neutral) stuff would be better.

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i use the adoption alot. a few times i have had a regent grow very old and not produce heirs, or the regent's partner has died and i havent wanted to replace them. i also adopt if a bloodline has developed universaly bad traits but has relics. waiting untl a house dies out is a waste of time so i adopt.

the proplem i see with same sex marridge is this: if i am going to adopt i might as well have a single un married regent adopt. the partner dosn't contribute anything to the trainee. no traits are passed on. and a high lvl regent will train a child fine without someone married to him. i already adopt when a regent is single. and no one can spare a hero just for flavour

the solution: something to slightly justify the partner marrying the regent- eg. the partner in a same sex marriage is not removed from the hero pool for battles. why? if you want a same sex marriage it is for flavor really, you feel the story of jason "bloodfist" burrows ends in a same sex marridge. keeping the partner in the pool stops you from loseing your hero but lets you make the choice. there is a small buff in that the partner can keep gaining xp and lvls while training a kid so that feels like a small boost. this basicly makes same sex maridges an option that dosnt punish you. you could have a single regent adopting kids or a same sex couple doing the same but you havent crippled your game.

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It doesn't even have to be called 'love' if that bothers people. It could be called 'bond of friendship' and it could develop randomly, or could develop as a result of two heroes fighting together. Imagine two heroes fighting together, getting a bond of friendship (regardless of gender) and then retiring both of them to a keep.

I really REALLY like this idea. Having character develop bonds in battle that would have effects in the match-making part of the game would be a really great way to establish more personality for the characters and develop an organic narrative that the game currently lacks.

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i use the adoption alot. a few times i have had a regent grow very old and not produce heirs, or the regent's partner has died and i havent wanted to replace them. i also adopt if a bloodline has developed universaly bad traits but has relics. waiting untl a house dies out is a waste of time so i adopt.

the proplem i see with same sex marridge is this: if i am going to adopt i might as well have a single un married regent adopt. the partner dosn't contribute anything to the trainee. no traits are passed on. and a high lvl regent will train a child fine without someone married to him. i already adopt when a regent is single. and no one can spare a hero just for flavour

the solution: something to slightly justify the partner marrying the regent- eg. the partner in a same sex marriage is not removed from the hero pool for battles. why? if you want a same sex marriage it is for flavor really, you feel the story of jason "bloodfist" burrows ends in a same sex marridge. keeping the partner in the pool stops you from loseing your hero but lets you make the choice. there is a small buff in that the partner can keep gaining xp and lvls while training a kid so that feels like a small boost. this basicly makes same sex maridges an option that dosnt punish you. you could have a single regent adopting kids or a same sex couple doing the same but you havent crippled your game.

There's a few things to unpick, here: the point we've been trying to make is that it's clear that by design, infertile and same sex couples are not just 'for flavor'. There's a mechanical difference, which is that adopted children (which are the only way for these types of couple to continue bloodlines) inherit personality traits but not regular traits. This is an important distinction, because at least in potential it gives the opportunity to occasionally consider from a wider range of partners when figuring out how to continue a bloodline.

In principle I think this is a good thing. I would rather that making a choice like this had strategic value, rather than simply being flavour fluff. Because strategic value = more interesting game, while flavour stuff is just... flavour. But right now, it's too punitive to really work as a strategic choice. It happens very rarely that it's a decent option. Cases might be:

1) All the potential suitors of one gender have such bad physical traits that you'd never want to marry them into a bloodline

2) All the potential suitors of one gender are infertile or too old

These cases are rare enough that I've got through 1 and a half games and only once felt that same sex marriage would be a good idea (and later regretted it). And they're also not really a 'decent' option. It's more like they're the 'better than nothing' option.

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the proplem i see with same sex marridge is this: if i am going to adopt i might as well have a single un married regent adopt. the partner dosn't contribute anything to the trainee. no traits are passed on. and a high lvl regent will train a child fine without someone married to him. i already adopt when a regent is single. and no one can spare a hero just for flavour.

That's actually not true. Regent's partners will pass on a portion of their XP and their personality traits to trainees in their care. The traits won't be passed on if they aren't the biological parent, but the personality traits (unless the trainee is a Rebel) and XP will be passed on.

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There's a few things to unpick, here: the point we've been trying to make is that it's clear that by design, infertile and same sex couples are not just 'for flavor'. There's a mechanical difference, which is that adopted children (which are the only way for these types of couple to continue bloodlines) inherit personality traits but not regular traits. This is an important distinction, because at least in potential it gives the opportunity to occasionally consider from a wider range of partners when figuring out how to continue a bloodline.

In principle I think this is a good thing. I would rather that making a choice like this had strategic value, rather than simply being flavour fluff. Because strategic value = more interesting game, while flavour stuff is just... flavour. But right now, it's too punitive to really work as a strategic choice. It happens very rarely that it's a decent option. Cases might be:

1) All the potential suitors of one gender have such bad physical traits that you'd never want to marry them into a bloodline

2) All the potential suitors of one gender are infertile or too old

These cases are rare enough that I've got through 1 and a half games and only once felt that same sex marriage would be a good idea (and later regretted it). And they're also not really a 'decent' option. It's more like they're the 'better than nothing' option.

right now it IS only for flavor because you will always end up losing heroes to pairings for years in exchange for minimal gain. if you ever want to pass on personality traits you appoint a standard and get the benefits globally. if you want to salvage a bloodlin on the brink of doom adopt to a single regent. there is no mechanical benefit to same sex marriage now.

my suggestion is to make same sex marriage viable by allowing a partner in a same sex marriage to remain in the hero pool. you get the benefits of saying- its a same sex marriage. you dont change any of the breeding rules, you get a slight buff in that the partner can keep gaining xp to train the adopted babies, but the downside that the partner could die and the trainee loses that xp income.

the base incentive for same sex marriage is that you get to pass on personality traits and not biological ones. but there are systems for that in game already. so it needs another niche.

i dont know about the rest of you but my regents are usually my highest lvl heroes, the partners are useualy not high lvl, they just have good genes and personalities. that is the most beneficial strategy because you can rarely train a child to enter the hero pool at a higher lvl then the parents anyway. so put a 20 year old lvl 2 bountiful bear strength partner with a lvl 5 regent and get a lvl 5 trainee with (hopefully) good stats. if there is no partner and i adopt into a single regent keep i can reliably train that child up to 1/2 the regents lvl. more if i have a bad ass standard.

same sex marriage literally dosn't affect breeding at all so whatever buff it gets shouldn't affect the breeding game. hence my suggestion to keep partners in the pool to give them a use. alternatively only allow adoptions when the regent is partnered with someone (forcing same sex marriages in some circumstances.... but that seems gamey and wrong)

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It doesn't even have to be called 'love' if that bothers people. It could be called 'bond of friendship' and it could develop randomly, or could develop as a result of two heroes fighting together. Imagine two heroes fighting together, getting a bond of friendship (regardless of gender) and then retiring both of them to a keep.

I really REALLY like this idea. Having character develop bonds in battle that would have effects in the match-making part of the game would be a really great way to establish more personality for the characters and develop an organic narrative that the game currently lacks.

Floating around in a couple of topics, we have brought up the idea of Bonding through Personality Traits, as a way to sneak back in "statuses" and "relationships (e.g. best friends, feuding, war bonding, etc)" that got cut out in early scoping. So I am for anything that increases more traits.

Smiles

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It doesn't even have to be called 'love' if that bothers people. It could be called 'bond of friendship' and it could develop randomly, or could develop as a result of two heroes fighting together. Imagine two heroes fighting together, getting a bond of friendship (regardless of gender) and then retiring both of them to a keep.

I really REALLY like this idea. Having character develop bonds in battle that would have effects in the match-making part of the game would be a really great way to establish more personality for the characters and develop an organic narrative that the game currently lacks.

Floating around in a couple of topics, we have brought up the idea of Bonding through Personality Traits, as a way to sneak back in "statuses" and "relationships (e.g. best friends, feuding, war bonding, etc)" that got cut out in early scoping. So I am for anything that increases more traits.

Smiles

Yah, this seems like win-win all round. More traits, more to think about when picking regents and partners, more lovely strategy all-round.

But it would have to be rare enough to be interesting. If bonds like this were ten-a-penny, then you'd never feel encouraged to go experimental, you'd just always pick the bonded male-female couples.

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What if same-sex heroes just got periodical auto adoptions without needing to use the chalice powers?

That would fix part of the problem, but it wouldn't be an ideal solution because it would be 'just because.' It's hard to convey why same sex couples get free adoptions while everyone else has to 'pay', it'd just be a bit weird. I prefer the more integrated solutions proposed.

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It doesn't even have to be called 'love' if that bothers people. It could be called 'bond of friendship' and it could develop randomly, or could develop as a result of two heroes fighting together. Imagine two heroes fighting together, getting a bond of friendship (regardless of gender) and then retiring both of them to a keep.

I really REALLY like this idea. Having character develop bonds in battle that would have effects in the match-making part of the game would be a really great way to establish more personality for the characters and develop an organic narrative that the game currently lacks.

Floating around in a couple of topics, we have brought up the idea of Bonding through Personality Traits, as a way to sneak back in "statuses" and "relationships (e.g. best friends, feuding, war bonding, etc)" that got cut out in early scoping. So I am for anything that increases more traits.

Smiles

totally on board with this. not a big fan of changing adoption or adding auto adoption or any of the other more blanket solutions. do agree it would be nice if you felt you could use infertile/gay couples more often

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Maybe you could grant same sex marriages 2 or 3 "free adoptions"as a bonus. I would be OK with that.

And you could also add some random events to same sex couples, for roleplaying flavor; i.e.:"Evil counselor conspires against same sex Regents, stating THAT is an "abomination" and a source of cadence corruption. He wants to get rid of them. Do you suport him or the couple?". :P

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Maybe you could grant same sex marriages 2 or 3 "free adoptions"as a bonus. I would be OK with that.

And you could also add some random events to same sex couples, for roleplaying flavor; i.e.:"Evil counselor conspires against same sex Regents, stating THAT is an "abomination" and a source of cadence corruption. He wants to get rid of them. Do you suport him or the couple?". :P

Eeesh, I would strongly advise that they not even go there. That event would make me highly uncomfortable and the narrative isn't sophisticated enough to really give it the nuance it deserves (that's not a criticism of the narrative, it's just that it's not really this game's job to deeply explore the social ramifications of same sex couples - it needs to stick to what it does better, which is offering up nice strategic options)

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Bah... Why then even allow it, if the game mecanics clearly go in the other direction...

Yeah, lets do not ANYTHING CONTROVERSIAL. Our heads might explode. You're the killer of joy... :P

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Bah... Why then even allow it, if the game mecanics clearly go in the other direction...

Yeah, lets do not ANYTHING CONTROVERSIAL. Our heads might explode. You're the killer of joy... :P

We've already discussed all the ways in which the game mechanics actually ostensibly allow for it quite well, it's just unbalanced in practice. Try to be a bit more civil in this discussion, please, the rest of us seem to have managed to discuss this issue perfectly well without the snark and personal insults.

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What if the same-sex partners, in the absence of having children of their own to raise, seek out those in the population who are "attuned" to the chalice? You could even make this an option for research ("Chalice Attunement" or something) and that could be a way to justify them getting 2-3 adopted children "for free" but then costs more (because they can't leave the keep if they have children to take care of).

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What if the same-sex partners, in the absence of having children of their own to raise, seek out those in the population who are "attuned" to the chalice? You could even make this an option for research ("Chalice Attunement" or something) and that could be a way to justify them getting 2-3 adopted children "for free" but then costs more (because they can't leave the keep if they have children to take care of).

It feels a little inelegant. I feel like, for example, if you're infertile and a regent or parent you should only get children if the player has done something specific to address that. If they automatically get freebies, then there would only be a slight different (trait inheritance) between 'low chance of children' and 'no chance'. I'd rather it felt like exploring an alternative strategy, and I think it might also be confusing. But maybe there's some way to finesse it, that's just my initial read.

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I don't know if I'd suggest the following as the solution, but adoption could be an automated process, just like birthing babies.

e.g. once you pair up pair up heroes of opposite genders, baby making more or less starts (caveats with certain fertility traits, age, etc). Adoption simply could be automated the same way when you pair same-sex heroes together (with or without controls to say no more than 'x' automated adoptions in a given time period). Their 'babies' would have randomly generated genes, but the personality traits would be influenced by the same-sex couple.

Smiles

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I don't know if I'd suggest the following as the solution, but adoption could be an automated process, just like birthing babies.

e.g. once you pair up pair up heroes of opposite genders, baby making more or less starts (caveats with certain fertility traits, age, etc). Adoption simply could be automated the same way when you pair same-sex heroes together (with or without controls to say no more than 'x' automated adoptions in a given time period). Their 'babies' would have randomly generated genes, but the personality traits would be influenced by the same-sex couple.

Smiles

It could be, sure. That would fix one problem (the one we're talking about) but it would also create the problem that adoption currently fixes - which is that it works as a sort of safety net for if you want to continue a bloodline and have no other way.

I kind of like the adoption system feeling distinctly, uh, distinct from birth, because it draws attention to the differences, but I just think it's not balanced right now to be a strategic option so much as a 'we really need to do this' option.

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I don't know if I'd suggest the following as the solution, but adoption could be an automated process, just like birthing babies.

e.g. once you pair up pair up heroes of opposite genders, baby making more or less starts (caveats with certain fertility traits, age, etc). Adoption simply could be automated the same way when you pair same-sex heroes together (with or without controls to say no more than 'x' automated adoptions in a given time period). Their 'babies' would have randomly generated genes, but the personality traits would be influenced by the same-sex couple.

Smiles

It could be, sure. That would fix one problem (the one we're talking about) but it would also create the problem that adoption currently fixes - which is that it works as a sort of safety net for if you want to continue a bloodline and have no other way.

I kind of like the adoption system feeling distinctly, uh, distinct from birth, because it draws attention to the differences, but I just think it's not balanced right now to be a strategic option so much as a 'we really need to do this' option.

Eh. I think the most we'll get are a few tweaks probably for the system.

Smiles

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