Food - has to deal with better
There are a couple of things that bug me about the way the game handles food. I should mention I love the food system and the ability for starvation - it feels right to me.
Problem 1 - Will I have enough food?
I find the way game deals with granaries & food production to be hard to figure out. Granaries are a percentage of food storage, rather than a fixed amount. And without doing math, I cannot see whether or not a settlement is going to starve basically before it does.
- Make granaries a fixed amount of storage
- Show turns of food on hand in the UI
- Add a UI pop-up in the middle of summer if a city doesn't have enough food to survive the winter
Problem 2 - Some food buildings don't really work
Farmers Community generates a fixed amount of food. How? I am struggling to see how this works. Better to follow the fishing route - have it generate a extra food per worked square
Fishing stops in winter. That's not how fishing works and a big reason why communities that got a lot of their food from the sea did so well. Fishing communities should generate some food even during winter (albeit less than during summer). Likewise hunting.
Problem 3 - Food is too easy to get
Historically, food was very hard to get reliably. Famines were (and are) common. Starving out a city was a common tactic in war. Food production can be very seasonal, so crops and fruits are really only harvested once, in the fall (with maybe an early crop depending on the location)
In game examples:
I pillaged every single improvement from around a city, yet the city barely shrank.
Immediately after winter is over, people start eating again. From what stocks?
So here are some things I would like to see:
- No food production under or in the 8 surrounding squares that an enemy army is in
- Farming should be a big burst of food in a couple of turns of late summer/early fall
- Hunting and fishing should provide small amounts year round, with again a large burst in the summer
- Armies should eat. Any army in a city should require food. Any outside of town forage from the land (and thus deny that food to the adjacent city - yes this means your army can starve out your own populace)
Welcome to the Rising Empires forums. You have some good thoughts about the food system. In general I feel that the food system is complex as it is and making any drastic changes require severe changes in the code and how the AI handle food.
Having said that I agree that making the effect of granaries easier to see in the UI is a good idea. It should definitely be easier to see if there is risk for starvation. I'll make note of this.
Regarding fishing and other food buildings this is also a balance issue. If food from fishing would be generated during winter this would make coastal settlements even more superior than they already are.
A settlement do not collect food from a sector where an enemy army is located. If you want to starve an enemy settlement you should spread out your armies a cover all sectors it collects food from, remember that the closer the sector is to the settlement the more food it generates.
It's certainly an interetsing idea that garrisoned armies would require food as well. But adding this would also mean that armies outside settlements would require food and this would demand a supply system. How would such a system work?