This was always part of the “all-in” Age 4 gamble. You hit the revolution button to quickly end the game before the weight of the Age 5 bonuses crushed you. And they’re considerable. With Age 5, you get techs that give +50% to harvest rates on all 3 resources, and you get the individual +50% attack/hp upgrades on the units. It’s expensive, but it’s a lot of power. So, if you shove all your villagers onto the map as revolutionaries, and you fail, what then? Should you just be doomed to lose?
Mexico showed that didn’t have to be the case. They have 3 separate viable Age 5 revolutions. They have fully fleshed out decks and unique play styles that all compensate for some but not all of the lost Age 5 upgrades, and give a path to winning.
I’d love for the standard revolutions to get a similar rework, mainly because it’s a way of including many countries who often get requested to have their own full civs but which don’t really have enough to justify it. We don’t need 5 mini-Spains with new Mexico, Chile, Colombia, Peru, and Argentina civs. Mexico and Spain already cross over a ton (and they should), for example. What we need is for these revolutions to be unique and viable Age 5 paths that you’d want to play. You might even make a deck just for one of these revolutions, anticipating using it.
These should probably keep some fundamental elements:
- INF fort cards
- INF revolutionary cards
- 1-time card to enable the revolution’s unique unit if it has one
The Citizenship card needs to be baked in. Right now, it’s a mandatory first shipment because you must rebuild your economy. Just let us train the citizens as soon as we’re below the pop cap again. The penalty is still there without having to also chew up a home city shipment.
Beyond that archetype, get creative and give each revolution a deck with a unique feel to it. Maybe you’re more focused on military. Maybe you get a few unit upgrades. Maybe it’s just a unique unit. Maybe it’s a swarm-style approach and you get free units via some mechanism.
Maybe your civ is more economic focused and gets a strong economy once it rebuilds. Maybe it’s a change in the economic model from farming to livestock (and if so, automate it because no one wants to micro an economy in the last age of the game; you want to micro your army). Maybe you get an extra factory or access to better settlers of some variety, or some other economic tech. Again, be creative and do something that fits individual nation’s history.
Be cognizant of the paths into that revolution and various synergies. We want that kind of complexity! Hungarian grenadiers taking advantage of Ottoman upgrade cards is a good thing. Romania taking advantage of the Russian upgraded blockhouses is a good thing. Ideally, Malta’s +2% hp bonus would cross over into the revolution so you could take advantage of it’s turtle-style civ design and fixed guns.
The USA revolution is so common, it should probably be an archetype: a highly flexible revolution that any civ can take that does a little of everything, so it works with the various civs that feed into it, but not specializing too much. Take advantage of the DLC for inspiration. It’s an infantry civ with forts and cannons and an economy to support the swarm infantry. Right now, it gets a LOT of native alliances by default. That’s good. You make up for lack of Age 5 upgrades by putting more units on the battlefield. Maybe it needs some outlaw love too. Enable the American outlaws, lower the pop cost, and give a strength bonus. Maybe you have an INF card to send French reinforcements (cav) for historical flavor. Embrace the ranching economy, but again, automate it.
Also, it’s critical to avoid economy traps. By this I mean creating a post-revolution economy that’s too weak or vulnerable and which ends up being a huge disincentive. Right now, Finland is an economy trap. You gut your economy, go completely dependent on hunting and foraging long after you’ve cleared all of such resources safely near your base. So, you have to burn your shipment cards to get food, wood, and gold instead of using them for military shipments. You can use the livestock pen, and you need to, but you can’t rebuild it if yours gets sniped. It’s a death trap. Another is going to a wood-heavy military without wood-heavy economic support in the revolution. For example, they open up a lot of alliances with minor tribes, but offer you no renewable source of wood. Clear the map of trees and it’s GG. And the AI using it will ALWAYS commit villie suicide chasing those last trees. These are economic death traps.