Our aim is to bring the Hellenistic period to life.
We can use the help of any experienced modders who are willing to make a contribution. We need modellers, animators and scripters especially. We also would like some dedicated playtesters to help find bugs and provide detailed feedback on balancing and features. As well as earning a place in the credits, contributors will get access to the closed beta before each major release. Please send a PM here if you are interested.
You can find the first preview of the Macedon Faction here: Moddb.com
Today, we present the second and final part of the Macedonian faction preview. In this preview, we will be showing you Macedonian units and buildings relating to The Hellenistic Era's government system. While this system is largely the same as the one described in the third Roman faction preview, some changes have been made, and it is likely that changes will continue to be made in the future.
The government system has been completely reworked in The Hellenistic Era. Rather than having three levels of government, there are instead three tiers of policy decisions focusing on different aspects of a nation: government, military and civic. For each of these policy decisions, the player will have to choose between two different technologies. You will notice that these technologies have more bonuses than in the original game, unlocking additional units and buildings. Another new feature is that the second and third-tier technologies spawn additional patriots rather than replacing the previous one. This means that you will end up with three different patriots upon researching policy techs in all three tiers.
The Meeting House is where the policy decisions are researched. Like the Senate in the original game, it marks your capital. It is also here that you can research the army reform techs and train elite guard units.
The design of the Macedonian Meeting House is based on the two Bouleuteria in the Athenian Agora.
By researching Despotism, you are giving one man absolute power in your nation. This decreases research times, making it a useful policy for those who wish to make faster progress than their rivals.
The Tyrant acts like a Supply Wagon, allowing him to supply siege weapons and protect nearby units from attrition damage. He has an extra large Line-of-Sight, doubles plunder from enemy buildings destroyed in his radius, and gives plunder from enemy units. In addition to the normal Officer abilities, the Tyrant is able to recruit bodyguards.
The Macedonian Tyrant has the likely appearance of an Antigonid Macedonian king. He wears the golden diadem that commonly appears on the coins they minted, and his cloak is dyed purple to symbolise his royal status. He is accompanied by two Royal Pages. These were boys who accompanied the king, with duties such as attending him at his sacrifices, guarding him while he slept and preparing his bath and dinner. They can be identified by their brown tunic, white cloak, krepides boots and white kausiai hats.
The Palace is an upgrade of the Meeting House. It functions the same as the Meeting House, but it has extra health and is capable of attacking enemies and detecting cloaked units. Additionally it provides a small wonder point bonus
The design of the Macedonian Palace is loosely based on this reconstruction of the Palace at Vergina.
Researching this policy technology puts elected officials in charge of your nation. This allows ideas and innovation to flow more freely, which can be very useful given the high costs of researching the army reform techs and the rest of the policy technologies.
The Consul heals buildings and troops in his radius, as long as they are not taking attrition damage. Friendly units in his radius are immune to bribery, and have an increased range and Line-of-Sight. In addition to the normal Officer abilities, the Tyrant is able to recruit bodyguards.
The buildings and patriots in this preview will be shared with the Greek factions, who were generally more democratic than the Macedonians. Thus, the Consul and his companions have a distinctly Greek appearance, wearing a himation cloak above a sleeveless chiton.
This policy technology provides a number of bonuses that make it easier to follow an aggressive strategy. Buildings such as the Stockade and Fortified Barracks will allow you to create solid forward bases, and with cheaper barracks units and military technology you can field a larger army earlier.
The Commander acts like a Supply Wagon, and is also capable of combat. All units in his radius have extra armour and attack, and enemy cities in his radius assimilate much more quickly. In addition to the normal Officer abilities, the Commander has the ability to instantly assimilate a captured city.
The Macedonian Commander is inspired by this depiction of Alexander the Great. He wears a breastplate and a Boeotian-type cavalry helmet, complete with a crest, laurel wreath and feathers.
The Stockade is an upgrade of the Outpost. It is more expensive, but it is stronger, has a greater line-of-sight and is capable of attacking nearby enemies.
The Fortified Barracks is an upgrade of the Barracks. It is more expensive, but it is stronger and can attack nearby enemies.
The Military Tyrant and Consul are upgrades of the Tyrant and Consul. While they lose their special patriot bonuses mentioned earlier, they are instead capable of combat. Their top quality armour and fearsome skill on the battlefield make them some of the most poweful units available in The Hellenistic Era. In addition to the normal Officer abilities, they are able to recruit bodyguards.
The Macedonian Military Tyrant and Consul wear highly elaborate armour as befits a great leader, having a decorated helmet and a breastplate featuring intricate designs. The design of the Military Tyrant's helmet, distinguishable by its ram horns and lappets, comes from a bust depicting King Philip V of Macedon. The winged helmet worn by the Military Consul can be seen on multiple coins issued by Philip V and his son Perseus. They are each accompanied by two bodyguards, who have painted helmets and shields like those depicted in Macedonian frescoes.
This policy technology is ideal for defensive-minded players as it provides a number of bonuses that make it more difficult for enemies to take your cities. Buildings such as the Guard Tower and Citadel will force your enemies to commit to lengthy sieges, while faster training and building times allow you to quickly build up a defence in times of crisis.
The Governor is capable of combat and buildings and troops in his radius heal while in friendly territory. Buildings in his radius get extra armour, and in addition to the normal Officer abilities, the Commander can steal resources from enemy cities using the Plunder ability.
The Macedonian Governor, like his fellow military patriots, has access to some of the best armour available, including a crested Attic helmet, breastplate and cavalry shield.
The Guard Tower is an upgrade of the Watchtower. It is more expensive, takes longer to build and can only be built within city limits, but it has greater health and offensive strength.
The Citadel is a fortress type building, though the normal fort remains available. It is much more expensive, takes a lot longer to build and can only be built in Large Cities, but it can withstand a lot of punishment and it also has a powerful attack.
This policy technology provides military and economic bonuses that support the wealthy patricians of your nation's society. If you have you also researched Offensive Doctrine, you can turn to slavery and access a cheaper work force that is still just as effective. Furthermore it enhances cavalry in multiple ways, as they were often part of the upper classes.
The Patrician acts like a supply wagon, and siege units in his radius move and deploy at 2x speed. Mounted units in his radius have extra attack and armour. Also, In addition to the normal Officer abilities, the Patrician can bribe enemy units as if he were a Spy (coincidentally he happens to be talking to a Spy in the above picture).
The Macedonian Patrician and his companions wear typical Macedon garb - a cloak, krepides boots and a kausia hat. It is the colourfulness of this clothing that distinguishes them from the peasantry.
The Cultural Centre is a special civic building that produces a large wealth trickle and heals nearby units. For the Roman and Hellenistic factions, it comes in the form of a Theatre.
Slaves are an upgrade of Citizens. They cost Wealth rather than Food, have no ramp cost and are trained much faster, but they have much less health and a smaller attack than ordinary Citizens.
This policy technology provides bonuses to support the ordinary citizens of your nation. An increased Commerce Limit and access to Amphitheatres will allow you to build up a stronger economy. If you have also researched Defensive Strategy, you will be able to protect your cities with mobs.
Buildings and troops in the Populist's radius heal while in friendly or neutral territory. Unit-producing buildings in his radius produce at a faster rate, and buildings under construction in his radius build more quickly. In addition to the normal Officer abilities, the Populist can recruit a mob.
As with the Consul, the Populist has Greek clothing, though to gain the approval of the peasantry he wears a cheap brown himation and has peasants accompanying him.
The Sporting Centre is a special civic building that produces a large trickle of Influence (the resource replacing Knowledge) and doubles the number of Mob units spawned at the city when the "Call to Arms" ability is used. The Hellenistic Sporting Centre takes the appearance of a Gymnasium, while for the Romans it is an Amphitheatre.
The Mob is a militia unit that can only be created using the City's Call to Arms ability or the Populist's Recruit ability. They may be completely unarmoured and wield only a dagger, but these angry citizens will fight hard to defend their homes and if they can't overpower the enemy with sheer numbers, at least they will buy the player some time to bring real soldiers in. However, as time goes on the fervour of the mob dies down, this being shown in game by their health gradually descreasing. They won't be automatically killed, but will be left at such a low health level that one attack from any unit is enough to finish them off.
The number of Mob units spawned when activating the Call to Arms ability at a City can be increased by constructing Peasant Dwellings and a Sporting Centre there and by increasing the city level (Peasant Dwellings is the new name for the Small House building).
We hope you have enjoyed this preview. As usual, feel free to post your questions and comments here.
Special Note: We used Azangara's new Terrain: Flora and Fauna mod and GustavoUlate25's ENB mod for the screenshots in this preview. I highly recommend that you get them both.
The Terrain: Flora and Fauna mod can be downloaded here: Moddb.com
And you can get the ENB mod here: Moddb.com
With the Macedonian political buildings and units now completed, there is not much else that needs to be done to get the Romans and Macedonians in a releasable state. The remaining work mainly involves fixing a number of mostly simple bugs and glitches, and ensuring that all new units, buildings and technologies have been properly added with no missing icons, sounds or descriptions.
After this, everything should be pretty much ready to be released, though there will first be a closed beta. This will be used to find remaining bugs and to get feedback on balancing and the new features. At the moment the beta is mostly limited to contributors to the mod as my way of saying 'thank you'. However, I am also willing to allow anyone to sign up for the beta. Unlike the people who have earned their access through contributions or the latest guessing game, those who sign up for the beta would be required to extensively playtest and provide detailed feedback. An example of 'detailed' would be looking into the balancing of units and bonuses to see what is overpowered, what is underpowered, and what steps could be taken to balance them (less armour, more attack etc). So you would need some skill in playing Rise of Nations. I still have to plan the arrangements for how the beta testing will work, though it will most likely be a private group on ModDb, and it would probably last a few weeks.
If you are interested and you believe you can fulfill the expectations of being a playtester, please send a PM here.
Finally, once the beta testing state is over, all that is left to do is announce a release date and upload the mod. So we are getting close now!