It’s time for another showcase of some of the upcoming changes in order to best prepare you for the battles to come. The focus of today's news will be on the changes to nations in general, adjustments to urban provinces (or Cities, as they’ll be called in the future) and the implications this will have on the gameplay. On top of that, you’ll be able to take a look at one of the largest units to make it into the game in the future, the Flying Fortress!
As mentioned previously we will detach the world and general setting of the game from its real life counterpart. While nations will be strongly inspired by the actual nations in Europe, some will also have distinct differences such as changed forms of government or ideology, as well as drastic changes to their borders.
One of the most interesting changes in this regard will be a subject of today's showcase. The british isles previously were a very safe starting point to build up your economy and enjoy the luxury of natural defenses in the form of the North Sea.On the flipside they offered little immediate options to expand unless you were keen to go to war with another major nation on the continent.
We want to change this up a bit and offer more options with higher risk and reward by placing two major nations on the isles in the form of England and Ireland, with Scotland as a minor AI-nation. In harsh contrast to familiar borders of 1914 Europe, the situation in our alternative timeline has changed quite a bit. At the point in time where our future battles will be fought, Ireland managed to establish itself as an equal next to England, this creating a precarious situation for both. Further details as to how this situation came to be and the general fate of the British Empire might be revealed in future updates.
What this means from a player perspective is that the islands will no longer act as an immediate safe haven as you will have to either deal with your neighbour via diplomacy, or plan to take him out quickly in order to gain dominance over the british isles. Should you opt for the first option, the delicate question of how to split up scottish territory will arise rather quickly, as its cities and resources are an obvious first target for expansion for both. In case you start conquering scottish territory right away, you need to keep a close eye on your other neighbour as he will surely want to exploit any sign of weakness or attrition due to a war with Scotland.
Besides the British Isles, other nations and areas of Europe will also see similar changes to this. We want to create a more exciting start for some player nations whose starting situation offered little variety in the past. By creating more opportunities to balance risk and reward we’re hoping to provide a more thrilling experience early on.
The second major subject of today’s showcase will deal with the increased importance of cities and the resulting consequences for rural provinces and gameplay in general.
Previously the main reason why players would focus on conquering cities was the amount of victory points they contribute in comparison to other provinces. There was no difference in regards to what type of buildings could be built which allowed for any province to be built up as a major center of production. We strongly felt that this was a bad approach and didn’t reflect the actual importance that the capture of a major city might have in war or how many resources might be invested in order to prevent it from falling into enemy hands.
We want to create a gameplay dynamic where players will naturally fight for control of key provinces and the investment in men and material in order to achieve this is rewarded accordingly. We will therefore remove the option to construct production buildings in rural provinces. Cities are the beating heart of a nation where heavy industries, know-how and manpower are concentrated and will thus be the sole producers of heavy weapons and equipment. Besides that they will also be the main producer of vital resources in the game, putting further emphasis on their defense or conquest.
While rural provinces seem less important at first glance, they still represent a majority of provinces on the map and should thus not be neglected. Some rurals will still provide you with small amounts of resource production, creating points of interest besides cities on the map. In general their building options will be limited to utility constructions such as railways or fortifications. They serve as connection points between key areas of a nation and create a buffer zone around your important provinces at the same time. You might want to build a railway connection across the land in order to move newly produced mech formations to the front lines quickly, or create a ring of fortifications to block your enemy before he can move artillery in range of your production hubs.
Last but definitely not least we want to show off one of the largest units you’ll be able to command in the future. Due to a revolutionary propulsion system, its designers were able to equip it with several high caliber guns which were installed in a broadside configuration. Besides these heavy bombardment cannons, several medium caliber guns and a plethora of MG’s were also installed all along the ship, providing it with the necessary defensive capabilities needed to ensure a prolonged deployment in frontline sectors. Wherever possible, vital areas of the hull were reinforced and covered with armor plating.
Once the Flying Fortress arrives in a sector of the front, it’ll immediately assume a commanding role over the battlefield. From several kilometers behind and above the actual battlefield, it’ll commence with the bombardment and most likely complete annihilation of enemy lines. In contrast to ground based Artillery, it does not run the risk of receiving counter battery fire, or being outflanked but can only be attacked by enemy aircraft, or damaged by focussed anti aircraft fire.
It is not invincible however and should always be treated as the crown jewel of any air force. After investing the large amounts of resources necessary to research and construct this magnificent beast, it should ideally be provided with additional fighter cover. While it can easily fend off smaller formations of aircraft, it can’t dodge enemy fire or outrun an incoming attack due to its sheer size. Multiple enemy fighter wings could potentially overwhelm its defenses and damage critical areas of the hull.
Should your opponents not be able to react to the deployment of a Flying Fortress adequately and within reasonable time, it can become a deciding factor of the war and force your adversaries to seriously consider diplomatic solutions before their ground forces get annihilated in a hail of death and destruction.
This concludes our second showcase of future changes. We hope you’re as excited about many of the upcoming changes and additions to the game as we are. Let us know your thoughts about the changes to Cities and alternative nations, or whether you’d rather command a single Flying Fortress, or a battalion of Siege Mechs. Until next time general, best of luck on the battlefield!
Your Bytro Team