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Best way to start learning to build a grand strategy game?

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by Azzarrel, Aug 2, 2018.

  1. Azzarrel

    Azzarrel

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2018
    Posts:
    2
    I have Unity for quite some time now and already started a few tries to get used to the engine, completing basic youtube tutorials without a real purpose, but I have given up quite soon each time as I had a pretty slow learning curve.

    In the next few weeks I'll have plenty of time, which is why I want to give it another try and start building a grand strategy game. I want to focus on copying any game from Paradox Interactive like Crusader Kings. This is an unrealistic goal for my first real project - I am well aware of that, but working on something I like rather than on an uninteresting game from some 2D tutorial will help me to be more invested in my progress, no matter how far I come.

    However, I just don't know how to start. I've been looking for a step-by-step video tutorial, starting with the very basics and guiding me to a point where i can work on my own, but there are very few tutorials focusing on Grand Strategy Games. There are plenty - most of what I've watched mediocre at best - tutorials to Real Time Strategy games at best.
    I also found quite few fragments - most about creating the world map - on the form here.
    There are a few tutorials on a "world map kit" with a few tutorials, that don't look that professional, for almost 100€ in the asset store. I don't really know if that's an investment worth making.
    (https://assetstore.unity.com/packages/templates/systems/world-map-strategy-kit-55121)

    Conclusion:
    I am unceretain of how to start creating a Grand Strategy Game using Unity and could need some help on how to get started: A pretty detailed step-by-step tutorial would be surely the best, but i couldn't find much on that topic.
    I thought about working with some Real Time Strategy Tutorials if I can't find anything better. Paradox-Games also are 'Real Time' - even though the scope is much bigger - and I am quite happy about not having to use grid-based unit movements. Is this the right approach ? Are there any good guides to get started?
    What about the world map kit? Has anyone worked with it? Is it worth buying?
     
  2. Kiwasi

    Kiwasi

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2013
    Posts:
    16,860
    Grand strategy games are almost all custom built. There really is no general tutorial for them.

    That said, there are some general tips. The first thing you are going to want to invest in is building some data structures. You will need some sort of ECS system, you can't simply throw components on GameObjects as this won't scale well enough.

    If you are going for multiplayer, make sure you kill all randomness. You will need the system to run deterministically across multiple systems.

    Then just build up your systems one piece at a time.
     
  3. JDSweet

    JDSweet

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2018
    Posts:
    12
    I own the World Map Strategy Kit. I can attest that it is actually an amazing asset for people looking at building a GSG Paradox-style game. It handles almost all of the graphical aspects of your game, and can optionally handle some of the logical aspects (i.e. Pathfinding).

    The way I look at it, the 100€ price tag is 50€ for the asset itself, and 50€ for the documentation, support (they have amazing support), extra features (they add new features to the system all the time) and general maintenaince.
     
    Joe-Censored likes this.
  4. ifonlyme1000

    ifonlyme1000

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2019
    Posts:
    8
  5. JDSweet

    JDSweet

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2018
    Posts:
    12
    Couple years later,
    some

    So, after a few years working on my grand strategy game, some insight: you really don't need a lot of super technical skills. The lion-share of the work is making the data the game needs (20% of time), UI design (50% of time), and general game design (hashing out concepts with pen and paper and doing some mockup UI and prototyping work).

    Many of the "technical obstacles" can be overcome pretty easily (I use Moonsharp for complex events, a custom scripting language similar to Paradox's for simple events, and XML files to define UI layouts - Moonsharp Lua is also used to define what happens when UI items are interacted with).

    After working with WorldMapStrategy kit for a couple years, I can say it's a mixed bag - it is a bit of a performance hog, especially on higher settings, but it's super useful for prototyping, and some clever work with implementing game logic in worker threads could minimize/prevent any in-game hiccups.

    I also do want to take a while to mention, after studying Paradox AI for a couple years, I'm pretty convinced that they don't actually have any kind of meaningful AI. Most of the AI decisions are actually manually defined weights in the files. These weights are held together by a very thin layer of AI - maybe a loop or two and a simple state machine. Don't waste time trying to design some super complex grand strategic AI. You can achieve the same impact with less technical skill/more busy work.
     
  6. McBrei

    McBrei

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2021
    Posts:
    1
    Sounds great JDsweet. so, do you finish the AI and have a Game to show
     
  7. pradeep_unity711

    pradeep_unity711

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2023
    Posts:
    1
    i have own the wmsk i need build the network like strategy info for the pipelines through ground level connection between the certain points how to show the network like pathlines and like that information