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Battle Tactics

Will the be a kind of ai designed to give trained Characters/warriors formations. Sort of like what age of empires did back in the day. If I am hitting a rival tribes hunters and I want my guys to be say…stealthy… or even just defensivly approaching the enemies. Meaning they take shelter behind rocks when being attacked at range. Or if the have no trees or rocks nearby. They dive in the tall grass to avoid being shot with arrows. Attacking anyone aggressive towards them with what ever theyes have available. Could be fists. Might be a spear. Depends. I could see an A.I. set up like dragonage origins. Where you could choose what a character might do based on a few scenarios. Or have some preset AI setting to choose from. Each determined by a algorithm or something.

Unit tactics would be neat!
My guess is the actual fight would be less orderly due to the combatants not having formal training, but the lead up to the attack could be planned out (similar techniques being used for organized, larger scale hunting)

It is also important to consider that the majority of combatants, having no formal military training, would likely have spent much more of their time intimidating their opponents than actually engaging in deadly melee. Also, some battles may have been wholly ritualistic without actual causalities.

Evidence for large-scale military conflict during the Neolithic is both scarce and unconvincing. Early Neolithic warfare probably involved small groups of people raiding villages for resources or to settle disputes (so smaller unit tactics). The combatants were likely simple villagers utilizing the same tools used for hunting and farming, and not dedicated warriors, using simple snatch-and-grab and ambush raids.

On occasion, entire villages were wholly massacred, as seen in the Talheim Death Pit of Germany, ironically committed by the same culture Ember is a part of, the Linear Pottery Culture. In these cases of genocide, all but younger females tended to be killed, including children. It can be supposed the women were taken as slaves, due to their lower frequency within the mass graves (though some mass graves also include the women, too).

Curious to see what the dev’s come up with! \o/

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Early in the game I don’t expect a navy seal entrance. But as your people become proficient with hunting. Using their chosen weapons and tools. Even down to genetics as many children took up their parents occupation. Become good or sometimes ahead of their times in some cases. The same could be said for hunting parties.

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Later in the Neolithic, some dedicated warriors might also become available. =)


Not sure if this is the right thread …?
But on the subject of combat in general, I ask myself a few questions about the programming. unfortunately, I’m not a programmer at all, please forbearance.:baby: The topic “fight” is already presented in many games more or less perfectly. Is it still possible at the current stage of the development of the engine to AC to already on already existing combat games and their mechanics? Why reinvent the wheel when dozens of good wheels already exist? Individual battles always take place in relatively small areas of a map and the Npc’s have different routines than in everyday life. I would consider that as a minigame within a game. Only the starting conditions and the result come from - and go over - into the regular game. Remember Total War or Mount & Blade. Age of Empire and other games have solved it differently, but these games have all the goal “fight”, can not play peacefully. A possible loading time for the combat sequence should be acceptable and you would have the chance to select options for the battle beforehand. Also about whether you want to play there first-person or not …

One of the problems with using code (besides license and copyright) is the complexity of adapting it into another environment. Sometimes, it fits nicely. Often, it does not. Also, we programmers often have specific optimizations and ways of doing things and 3rd party code may not adhere to these.

Often, reinventing the wheel is easier than not. It gives the programmer a way to add their own custom bits, too (sometimes, improvements).

Lastly, Neolithic combat is probably not like larger, organized battle from subsequent periods. Lots more disorder, ceremony, intimidation. Also, plenty of one on one action/challenges, vs. unit tactics.

In most games in this genre, combat is either wholly non-existing, or limited. In Tropico and Banished, there is no combat. In Pharaoh, Caesar III, Zeus: Master of Olympus, Emperor: Rise of the Middle Kingdom, and Children of the Nile, combat does exist, but only when the enemy invades your city, and enter the city map, looking for destruction. But since combat never was a priority in these games, it consists of little more than making your troops move towards the enemy, and then just waiting, and hoping, while the troops fight. I guess we could hope for the developers to implement a bit more of Total War, as @stevenmilner85 suggests, or even Hegemony, like being able to order troops into formations, facing the direction you chose, to stand ground or run…

You could of course also build walls and towers in these games, but these, like other buildings in the games, were immediate in building, and were ripped to shreds in a few seconds by any enemy. There were, therefore, barely any “sieges”, in that sense. From what the developers have shown us so far, it seems both building and tearing down will be much more costly, and attacking a palisade defended by tribesmen with bows will surely by a costly affair for the attacker…

In the same way, the only battles in these games other than the ones in your city (or between two foreign cities), were the ones started by you, when you sent your army to conquer a foreign city. You simply got an event, saying “We’ve conquered X” or “We failed in conquering X”. That was it, no controlling your troops. And to be honest, it works quite well, seeing as the player is supposed to be the leader of the city, not the army, marching far away. You could, like in Chariots of War, give a general order, such as “defensive” or “aggressive”, which would be more or less effective if you have missile units or cavalry… but at the start of Ancient Cities, the player will surely neither have units nor cavalry :wink:

Therefore almost all of this, pertains to a later chronology, the Bronze age and later, when we have more proper cities and metal tools and weapons. Before all of these, there certainly was war, conflicts and battles… but like @lotus253 writes, it was naturally more limited, in frequency, intensity and volume. But just like groups of chimpanzees will sometimes gang up to fight other groups of chimpanzees over some contested resource, we can be sure that the same was true for our forefathers in the Neolithicum and before that. Rousseau coined the myth of the “happy savage”, who was ever content and never entered into conflict… but the truth was probably more like Hobbes described society before the social contract: “continual Fear, and danger of violent death; And the life of man solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short”. Whenever the number of humans was high enough to lead to competition for limited resources… there was fighting. War.


We know from mass graves that warfare occurred, but it was probably simple raids for honor, captives, resources and occasional conflict of opportunity. A “large” battle might have a few dozen combatants.

In my books I describe multiple raids and two “large” battles, but I always point out how uncommon these were. There simply wasn’t the resources for total war and standing armies. I suspect only large tribes even had a handful of dedicated warriors.

Shouldn’t hunting tactics be more important than Human v. Human tactics?

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Yes!!! Very much.
Food gathering is more important, and the same techniques could be adapted to tribal defense

Yes, I have a pic for everything lol

Had only seen a first episode of “Ancestors” yesterday and thought, the nature of the fight might fit quite well. If you are interested,94383.html
Among other things, the game has an interesting camera. My personal favorite would be the fight atmosphere of Mount & Blade Bannerlord …
Well, there is still time to think about it.