2021/11/14

The last Alpha is out!

The Longturn community is pleased to announce the v3.0-alpha.9 release of Freeciv21. Release notes, source code and the Windows package can be found at our GitHub repo --> https://github.com/longturn/freeciv21/releases/tag/v3.0-alpha.9

This is a big milestone for the Freeciv21 project as this is the last of the Alpha releases! The code is stable, the game is quite playable and for the most part "just works". Next up will be the first Beta (Beta.1). 

We don't have a time frame as of yet, but you can have a look at what we have planned my looking at the tagged issues --> https://github.com/longturn/freeciv21/milestone/2. For the most part we are concentrating on "annoying" issues with the client that make playing harder than it should be. Enjoy 😊

2021/11/13

LongTurn Scenario game 3: A Voyage to America!

In reality, if Vikings came to America, they didn't stay long enough to make history. If you join this game, you may change this.

https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachments/840915547834941480/909091295216168960/SG3-poster.jpg
“Leif Erikson Discovers America” by Hans Dahl

The scenario will be played on the map of North and South America map - with some additions - handcrafted by Sketlux (a. k. a. XYZ). Each player starts with specials tribal ships called knarrs to transport settlers, workers and warriors to the New World. The starting point for all players is in the middle of the Atlantic ocean but with the choice to sail wherever you want to found your new settlement. However, keep in mind that your tribal knarr has a limited lifespan of 10 rounds before it gets eaten by shipworms... 

Unfortunately, due to game mechanics, your other initial units will slowly lose all their HP and disappear but you can disband them in a city and get back some of the shields to rebuild new units.

The game will be played with the ruleset based on LongTurn Experimental, but with 20-30 new units. Start is due around November 19th.

For more updates and technical information, check the #scenario-3 channel on Longturn Discord server!

2021/08/01

We're not dead (yet)! Only a... lot of other things on our minds... But otherwise, more alive than ever and getting better and better!

And while the blog editorial board (also known as "editorial plank") was in spring hibernation, the People Who Really Do The Work have Done Some Serious Work! The first edition of updated and modernised Freeciv client/server thingy is now out! There are, as always bugs and misfeatures to be resolved, but the software is now functional an usable under the working title Freeciv21

So far, most of the work has been done "under the hood", rehaul and reorganisation of pieces of code, Lua improvements, stuff regarding "C vs. C++" pissing contest, but some gameplaying changes have already been added. To only name a few, you can now name your units! Have an elite Marines or Paratrooper unit? Call them Navy Seals or SAS. Have a particularly powerful Artillery and are under communist government? Call it Khrushchev's Shoe! There is also sentry range: you can choose how far enemy has to be to wake up your sleeping unit! (If only it worked for the Editorial Plank...) And the WYSiWYG patch!

This, and more technical details, can be seen on the Github project Github page here!

The software is based on for now still experimental Freeciv3.0 and developed from there. To download and test the current Alpha version, when on Github project page, scroll to the bottom and click Assets.

2021/04/23

New Longturn Simulation game starting next week

 
LT63Sim is scheduled to start on Thursday, April 29th. (As always, slight delays are possible.)

The game will be using the Sim ruleset, whose goal is running a more realistic simulation of human history than is the case with other Civ rulesets.

There is an immense number of new features and the whole ruleset manual, together with the "philosophy" and "Basic strategy", can be found here.

Main features: 

* "Quickstart": Tribal government is designed to create a quicker beginning than any other ruleset currently in play

* A continuous spectrum of strategies: the bigger your empire, the greater the power, but also more problems with maintaining infrastructure and technological progress

* Spontaneous migration, allowing less control over your city populations, but allowing city diversification into large centres and smaller suburbs, towns and villages, making infrastructural and demographic management more important

* Tech upkeep: the more cities you have, the more science needs to be spent on maintaining the present tech level of your nationp> * Forewer War made more difficult: it's easy to raise an army, but maintaining it for a longer time creates a strain on your budget

* A whole class of bombarding artillery units: can attack with limited power without receiving damage, and damage is dealt on all units in the stack

* Much more developed nuclear branch, making the Race for Nukes less one-sided: reduced First Strike capablilities and introduced features and units that allow retaliation and nuclear deterrent

A new combination of features, probably never seen in Freeciv:

* Killstack OFF, which means you have to kill enemy units one by one. HOWEVER: 

* Fully utilized new Freeciv 2.6 property making it possible to put a soft limit on the stack size: the bigger the stack than its "max size", the bigger defence penalty for its units; if you create a "superstack" with 15 or more units, their initial defence value will drop to zero! (The "maximum size" of the stack will vary from 3 to 8, depending on terrain, technology, whether units are in a city or in the field and so on.)

Game page: https://longturn.net/game/LT63Sim/

HOW TO JOIN (Important: when you join the game, you also need to confirm participation!)

2021/04/21

LT62 has started at port 5062

LT62 has just started. Because of an unknown technical problem, the port for this game is 5052, not the usual 5062. The problem has been solved. The port is now 5062.

LT62 is a teamless game with some new features.

- quick and fair start allowing the first city to grow in 3 turns with perfect locartion
- unit based fair tech trading making popularity contests more difficult
- new early wonders but also new stuff for all the eras
- mid game rankings!
- realistic early ships needing resources: no more wooden ships travelling 1000 years
- nukes will actually destroy rails and other infra + 3 levels for the SDI defense
- real restrictinfra so that your enemies can't use your roads without securing them first
- realistic early wonders meaning that they are cheap but will not last until late game
- no golden path rapture growth
- real air battles meaning that the attacking enemy planes can actually be intercepted
- more expensive late game techs so that even the superpowers can't get all of them in few turns
- new ways to grow, research or fight during the medieval ages
- and of course our great community

2021/03/23

An old bug has just been exterminated

As it was officially published today on a few communication channels, an old "backdoor" through which computer-savvy players could have gained privileged information about a game they are playing has just been shut and welded. The "backdoor" wasn't deemed too relevant for single-player games, but with the expansion of Longturn multiplayer communities, it started to become a problem.

Due to the nature of the map generator, it was possible to recreate the map you are playing at if you managed to find out the exact second the game was started because the generator used the computer time in seconds as a seed for generating the map. Even if the exact time was not known, it was possible to create several maps and compare them to the known area around your units. 

The "backdoor" is removed starting from Freeciv version 2.6.4 and all Longturn games from LT59 onwards have already been starting with a patch.

It is not completely certain if this will affect Freeciv Web. They have been informed about this a week before publication of the existence of the "backdoor" and the fix, but so far they have been quiet about this.

2021/03/13

Reports from just finished LT57

For some people one of the most fun class of games in Longturn is a team game, and one just ended. Louis and Cgalik were kind enough to share their reports of the game and we are posting them here. Also, Hans Lemurson was making a day-by-day account as events were unfolding and his VERY detailed story can be found here.

In the end, team Hellcats achieved victory over Vectron's Imperial Navy.


 

Cgalik's report



We all started in a pretty concentrated cluster of islands. Illkachu and Hans at the center, with Yknot eventually next to Ste, Jwrober/Zoe near Xandr/ghamath. Besides these fronts, there was a only a handful of shared islands. kamblr and kevin, cgalik and bamskamp. (Part way through the game Louis replaced Illkachu, but he remained on our team and we enjoyed him observing on occasion as well in-game.)

I'm going purely off of memory here, so lots could be wrong.

Yknot, the newest player to the game ended up next to ste, a LT vet. Ste in the end had the best starting placement in the game and took full advantage. But after he settled all his land and top in land area, he come in and stole another island from Yknot in just a few turns. Hans came to the rescue with a boat load of v phalanx to pause the invasion until ste built up enough knights to easily knock out the last city on the island. Ste gained confidence with this and not too long after did a landing on a Hans' nearby island which included multiple empty cities. But Hans' had several units all hiding in one city and massacred ste's landing party. This gave Hans great confidence that he could farm away in peace. Only to find that ste came back with tons of knights and almost took the whole island in 2 turns. I advised Hans to rush migrants/settlers and burn the cities you can't keep, only to find that Knights don't kill population in this ruleset. Oops. Ste took 2 cities and only burned one. But Hans held one city on the island and got gunpowder the next turn so stopped the invasion. Ste had 2 cities and soon planted another. Ste #1 in most demographics at this point. Neither had democracy yet, so there was some intense diplomatic battles to prevent inciting. Ste pumped it full of migrants and the cost soon got too high. Hans got to demo first so then no longer needed the diplos, which allowed him to do a one way trireme+diplo incite attack on smaller city, but the RNG was not in our favor and both 40% chances failed. Soon ste was in democracy. Meanwhile Hans built up a catapult army... but not good against musks... Hans/ste did some squabbling over some hills/forest tiles with musks hoping to wear ste's units down... because...

Jwrober rushed to Frigates and built a small navy... sailed them quietly half way around the world and we pulled off a Frigate attack + musk invasion of a separate ste island. Taking two cities with not too many losses as we killed cities with archers, warriors that hadn't been upgraded to musks yet. We stalled here as they sailed in reinforcements. (But I wonder if we could have kept going...) But this gave louis a city where he pumped triremes. Several turns later on a nearby island with shallows we were able to do a 4 team dragoon/musk attack and take the whole small island in 1 turn. It was our team's highest moment. ste was no longer #1 and was on his heels. But this was near our weakest player Yknot, which made it tough to keep moving forward as was so far from Louis and Zoe. So this was as far as we ever pushed here.

Meanwhile back at the start for me, I did a loop around my island with longboat+settler to find nothing! I had the choice to come home to refuel or keep moving forward never to return... I moved forward and found land! Xandr's land! sad So I could either dump my settler on xandr's empty mountain and make him kill it... or drop off on the pole! So I "saved" my settler and dropped him off on the pole. I could go along the coast of the pole... but knew roughly what was there... or go to jwrober... or split the middle of the pole and see what was on the other side! Thus started a 30 turn journey through the center of the pole! :)

So meanwhile I still had found zero islands to settle to start. I missed a shallow tile by 1 nearby my homeland, that hans later found and settled. I tried again this time going farther out to find land! Hooray! I settled it and sent another longboat and settler... only to find I had company... bamskamp. I settled my second city.. and had trireme inside the city. But made my worst mistake of the game... I brought trireme out to kill xandr's longboat that was being used by bamskamp and got a kill and upgrade! But that left my city empty... which bams had a trireme+horse nearby and burned the city, and trireme (which I had rehomed) vanished. :_(. I would never have the upperhand again against bams. If I had this city it would have opened up a lot more options to me. But later I discovered bams had been settling these several islands for several turns, so had many more cities than me nearby. sad I founded one more dangerous city by a river next to bams, and spent tons of resources in the region. Luckily Hans' found one small island for me and I squeezed in 3 cities here. Ste was even seen supporting with horses, so I knew I had no great chance. All this war put me behind on homeland and I was a bottom third nation with little land and no hopes of catching great farmers like kevin551 and xandr. I dedicated the rest of the game to turtling up, farming and sending gold to teammates.

On the other side of the world, kamblr settled many islands right away with no battles. He also snuck a city next to kevin and caused him to take it out with dragoons later. Kamblr farmed very well, leading our team to Republic and Democracy and provided a lot of gold later in our team attack.

On another side of the world jwrober and zoe grab an island or two and settled it. Jwrober had only minor incidences against xandr. Xandr was top military building like 40 horses as we could see from demographics. This made him a terrible attack target, so jwrober went and raided ste with Frigates. :) But this left Jwrober's homeland with a lot of resources sucked from it.... Xandr farmed brilliantly and was the first in the game to Marines. In this ruleset, Marines had to be built fresh, not upgraded from other units. Xandr teamed up with ghamath with an impressive marines+cavalry+canons+destroyers attack on jwrober taking his cap in a single turn.

At this point we had watch ste build up a massive amount of units, and kevin be number one in demographics as he is the best farmer I know and had no interruptions and no visitors. Even with us taking 2.5 islands from ste he had more land than any of us... we knew we had lost as even the one front we were winning on ste was still looking good. And bams took my cities on our shared island already, so we were winning really on zero fronts. We had several great nations and econ, but low production and military.

But we choose to do one last Grand Attack...

And Louis and Hans got Marines at the same time.... We left the other team guessing where we were going to attack... we could try and take back jwrober's land, but wasn't of great gain to us, and we had already (internally) conceded our fate... so we decided like xandr went after jwrober who had helped go after ste... we would go after ghamath who helped attack jwrober.

Zoe build a fleet of ships and got Engineering, we upgraded them and attacked ghamath and successfully took most of his home island including his cap. It was a ton of fun and a successful team attack. :)

However, the next turn Louis' land (as expected) got invaded and 4 cities taken but not cap as enemy ran out of ships. We could have mounted a counter attack and save his cap and battle it out and probably win on his homeland.... but we had our fun, and decided to "Lay down our own king" (like in chess) and resign and shake hands.

Our opponents played great and earned a well deserved victory. I think we easily could have drawn it out (50 turns?) as it was probably like 55%/45% split, but we decided against it for a variety of reasons. Part me loves to fight to the last hidden partisan... but part of me also wants to actually help improve the game with writing a few patches. :)

Much thanks to kevin for leading a great team and putting up with me and my crap. hehe Kevin's won 2 out of 3 in the series so I have to face it that he might be better than me. :)

Much thanks to wieder for admin'ing (and moderating me and kevin's arguments lol) and playing for a few turns here and there for Kevin's team.

Much thanks to Ilkkachu who wrote the WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) patch that fixed the migrant trick. It tested out wonderfully all game. Great job, Ilkkachu!

Last but not least, double thanks to louis94 who told me he was not going to play in this team game (for Real Life reasons) only to step in when Ilkkachu stepped out. He also managed to admin the other games, upgrade the website in the meantime. Louis94, MVP of LT for sure.

Thanks for the game!

Louis' report



The island I was awarded by the map generator was in the center of our team and didn't have the standard two small nearby islands one would expect from the game settings. I ended up settling one small island close to Hans, but this gave me just 20 cities. Several other players on the team had the same issue, and others failed to settle "their" islands in time or lost them early on. With the team behind in land area and not many fronts covered by strong players, our best chance was maybe to set up a strong attack to gain land early on. We failed to plan this and chose to farm instead, relying on the trade boost from Republic to outperform kings on the other team. We farmed for too long and xandr beat us all to Marines; and even knowing that the attack was coming we kept farming. No wonder we couldn't do anything when the attack came! (Ok, we did also take some cities, but looking back these were underpowered skirmishes compared to the general offensive needed to overcome our early game mistakes.)

Ruleset wise, this game had major changes with respect to LT51. The first was the nerfing of Fundamentalism, which from the must-have money mill of LT51 was turned into something much less useful. Except funda, all early mid game governments now have comparable strength and are viable options. ThOverall I think the LT57 ruleset was a nice improvement over LT51. Govs are balancing out and the seas are more interesting than ever. Hat tip to wieder for his work on LTT. Also many thanks to Ilkkachu for the WYSIWYG patch series and everyone who played this game in a fun and very respectful way (almost no RTS in 100 turns!!), from our eternal n00b cgalik to Kevin the best paranoid farmer in town. Special congratulations to panch who did great for his first game at this level.ey also have important limitations that make the race to late mid game govs more crucial. Of those, Democracy still appears to be the most powerful government and Federation was not used. Communism comes too late to be relevant, in order to get it you need to invest into tons of trade multiplier buildings (libraries, unis) that work best in demo anyway.

Apart from fixing Funda, the most important change in this game was probably the much slower tech rate. This made it possible to attack with Knights and Frigates before everyone had Musketeers or with Canons before Riflemen. It also made it much more important to choose the best research strategy, as there is no way one could get the needed tech quickly after an attack (though there were exceptions). I must say I enjoyed the dense fighting at all epochs, something that hadn't taken place in the two previous games. The Knights ended up working relatively well even if they would be OP for a land game; this is probably an example to follow for early game units.

I think that in this game there were several critical moments when one could attack with relatively few losses: Knights, Musketeers/Frigates and Marines. Later in the tech tree Fighters are probably another turning point, and so are Nukes. But with the higher tech costs games will rarely get that far. I would welcome changes to early game units making very early attacks viable. This game also saw more naval battles than there used to be, mostly fought between the two kinds of Caravels. The super-expensive and relatively weak Square-Rigged Caravel attracted sharp comments but was still built in great numbers to fend off pirates. Later ships have enough MP to sail between cities and avoided staying in open sea, so the number of battles decreased. Maybe modern units could progressively gain more fuel while keeping about the same range.

Destroyers are too expensive and are only useful when upgraded from Frigates. They should probably cost 60 shields instead of the current 70 because it's very hard to build a fleet after researching Engineering. Marines could be tuned down to compensate (5/4/3 maybe): they're currently both the best attackers (8A from the sea) and best defenders (5D) of their time.

Another unit change was unwanted: diplomats can establish embassies and investigate cities from the sea. I think investigating cities is good for island games since it makes it less of a gamble to attack with Frigates or Marines. Seaborne ambassadors take away the fun diplomat-and-phalanx-on-mountain game but also make it much easier to establish embassies. Both teams had full intel very quickly, which took some of the uncertainty away. I'm not sure if I liked it or not; this made large scale attacks maybe too predictable, but embassies are fun. One should probably find aim for a middle ground where it's possible to get embassies in island games, but not too easy either. I cannot think of a not-too-artificial way like forcing diplomats to sail on very slow and expensive ships.

Speaking of artificial ways, the trade bonus for occupied cities was both necessary (5% is more than the late game growth rate of 2.5%) and not so fun. The best way of making sure that cities are occupied is to have units capable of taking them. The trade bonus is just a noob trap because it's unusual, not very visible and the client doesn't understand it.

On the buildings side, I think the changes to banks and stocks worked very well. Somehow I was unable to celebrate at 20% lux without entertainers even with stocks and The Corporation. Maybe this was due to my large cities but I wasn't expecting this. Factories giving only +25% production favored city specialization but maybe late game unit costs would have required adjustments. However this was already fixed in LTT.

Overall I think the LT57 ruleset was a nice improvement over LT51. Govs are balancing out and the seas are more interesting than ever. Hat tip to wieder for his work on LTT. Also many thanks to Ilkkachu for the WYSIWYG patch series and everyone who played this game in a fun and very respectful way (almost no RTS in 100 turns!!), from our eternal n00b cgalik to Kevin the best paranoid farmer in town. Special congratulations to panch who did great for his first game at this level.

2021/03/05

News from the Wiki

 Some documentation is finally being put together for the main Longturn ruleset. Also, a section called "Basic strategy" was created in the Simulation ruleset manual.

First things first, Wieder's list created long ago has been moved to Freeciv Wiki for easier access and can be found on what is for now the official Longturn ruleset page. It contains the main differences between the tradition Longturn ruleset and the classic (Free)Civ rulesets that common players have been playing before coming to LT. With the main changes being that Settlers cost 2 population units and no rapture, there are many other features that a new perspective Longturn player may want to check. The document itself is not cast in stone because the ruleset varies from game to game, but it is definitely a good start and a comprehensive list of what has changed.

As for the Simulation ruleset, with such drastic conceptual changes it seemed that a basic strategy guide may come in handy so it is now an integral part of the main manual. We hope that it will be useful.

2021/02/25

LT61 starting tomorrow

After a slight delay, LT61 is starting tomorrow. It is the most classic LT game lately: continent(s), teamless (meaning no pre-assigned teams), 3-member alliance victory or spaceship or score victory. 15 players confirmed so far.

Signups (don't forget to confirm): https://longturn.net/game/LT61/

Additional info and official channel: https://forum.longturn.net/viewforum.php?id=60

2021/02/22

New resources - software and some music to go with it

Well, old resources, but new links for our resource section on the left.

First, we have Freeciv Msys2, a set of instructions and scripts that a person can use to setup a Freeciv development and compilation environment on MS Windows using the MSYS2 emulation envrionment. Most folks that compile freeciv or roll their own clients and servers do so on Linux or other Unix variants. However there is a great number of players on Windows who may find this helpful.

Secondly, SongOfDoom is a music soundtrack for Freeciv vesions 2.6+. It was orginally created by mir3x and announced on the Freeciv forums in December 2016.

Jwrober picked up the soundtrack, added it to github and is maintaining it as of December 2019.

Both resources have comprehensive ReadMes that may help even not-too-experienced folk.

2021/02/19

Longturn League about to start

After months, maybe years, of intense sitting-and-thinking-about-it and several weeks of preparation, the first game within the Longturn League is starting on Saturday. The game designation will be A1 for class and the number of the game. The target of 16 players has been achieved with most of them, though, being relatively new to Longturn, but it is a feature of the first game, with everyone being relatively new to the concept. It is understood that the consecutive games will separate players by skill, either by success in previous LL games or, if it is their first, the number of general LT games they have played.

B1 game has also been open for signups with an unspecified starting date.

The official game information can be found on the Longturn League page.

2021/02/09

New! Freeciv for absolute beginners

 As this site is growing, we are adding more and more content. Even though there are probably a lot of intro tutorials for (Free)civ around the net, why not have one more. So, a new page: (Free)civ for absolute beginners - a short intro. Permanent placement: top-left menu. Spread the word and tell your friends!

2021/02/08

LT61 announced to start in two weeks

The third LT game of 2021 has just been announced to start in "late February or early March". LT61 will be a classic Longturn game with a Longturn Traditional ruleset (LTT), continent(s) and mixed victory conditions.

By the words of the admin: 

Most of the single player rulesets have a relatively low start with less things to do in the early game. However, LTT is tuned for multiplayer. There are not only more start units and faster initial growth but the tech tree was cost-adjusted for better multiplayer experience. You can still get gunpowder by T50 (roughly) but the late techs will take more time. With the usual setups the exponential growth makes it possible to get airplanes and missiles by T90 (roughly) by focusing on economy before the industrial revolution.

Now with LTT the economical explosion, is much harder before the industrial revolution. What this basically means is that players can choose between way more strategies than before. It's not like there wouldn't have been a choice in the past but now there are even more options, but until now the games were designed to last 120-150 turns. Now this span is roughly 80-150 turns. Ending the games early is more easy if the rest of the players are simply farming and not attending all the aspects of their empire.

Yet the game remains quite familiar to those who know the old games.