EVOLUTION TOWERS & RESEARCH PROGRESS

The reason we didn’t like the first idea is that you constantly had to boot up a new window that covered the entire screen in order to conduct research and unlock things (which is a pretty run-of-the-mill approach that wouldn’t be much different from Civ games). It felt completely separate from the rest of the game, resulting in it breaking the game’s flow. It was a hassle to try and balance it to lower the amount of time you’d spend away from the actual gameplay. At the beginning of the game, we really don’t want research to take too long to unlock, so that you always have a constant supply of new stuff to play with. In later eras, we would then gradually increase the time taken and overall requirements for each research item. The screen didn’t work too well with this philosophy either. So, basically, we scrapped that idea and powered up our in-house Quantum Idea MachineTM. Today, we present you with Evolution Towers.


"THERE ARE NO SHORTCUTS
IN EVOLUTION"

                                                                                                                                                             Louis D. Brandeis

Towers are special buildings that Nuggets construct automatically in random locations. This is where Nuggets gather in groups to conduct research into various aspects of the civilization. In the Stone Age, the first Evolution Tower, called the Sacrifice Tower, will look like a pile of stones wrapped together with wooden threads. It will have up to 5 slots to assign Nuggets. The more Nuggets there are in the tower, the faster research will be completed.

By clicking on the Sacrifice Tower, you’ll be greeted with the Influence Window. You will immediately notice that the window feels much more a part of the game as opposed to a separate environment. It is comprised of the following:

The various Perks that can be researched, the description for the selected Perk, and requirements that must be met in order to research it. By researching Perks, you unlock new buildings and develop your civilization further. Certain Perks even improve the strength of your Nuggets.

THERE ARE 4 TYPES OF PERKS

Blue Perks are Evolution Perks. They unlock Key Buildings and advance your civilization through the ages. Every Evolution Perk researched brings your civilization one step closer to the Space Era.

Yellow Perks are what we call Travelling Perks, meaning that they are only temporarily available and refresh constantly. They appear alongside almost every Evolution Perk. These Perks usually have minor effects on your civilization (which add up) and consist of either Innovation Perks or Mutation Perks.


YELLOW PERKS ARE ALSO 
DEVIDED BY TWO CATEGORIES

Innovation Perks reflect simple but brilliant ideas thought up by Nuggets as they go about their daily tasks. Being so complacent, they would never pursue their ideas without the right motivation. As their god, players can analyze these innovations and decide if they want the Nuggets to research them. Innovations come and go frequently. Nuggets will eventually forget their ideas, so you have to act quickly to research a perk if it interests you.
Innovation perks offer minor improvements (that can add up to major benefits) to various buildings, systems, or professions. An example of an Innovation Perk is Improved Clothing, which increases the maximum temperature range that Nuggets can endure. It adds +5c to Max temperature and -5c to Min temperature. This gives Nuggets a better chance of surviving brutal weather conditions during extreme winters and summers. However, this Perk will also slow your Nuggets’ speed by 3%.  These perks are refreshed periodically.

Mutation Perks improve Nugget stats. They stem from mutations found in the DNA of Nuggets, but, like with Innovation perks, these mutations only hold the potential to be activated for a limited time. Players must decide whether they want these mutations to become a permanent addition to the Nugget DNA that will be passed down forever, or just let the mutation die off.
These perks offer minor improvements (that can add up significantly) to the performance of the Nugget species. This can include increased stamina/speed/etc, less need for food or water, and even bump up the fertility rate. These also refresh periodically.



Green Perks are Rare Perks, meaning that they will only appear every now and then, but keeping an eye out for them is a good idea as they will have a bigger impact on your civilization. An example of this is the Perfume Perk, which increases all female Nuggets’ fertility timer fill rates by 5%. This will lead to faster reproduction cycles, and thus, more workers.



Purple Perks are Ultra Rare Perks. When you see this Perk, you’d better hit all of the buttons on your keyboard and do your absolute best to research it. We’re willing to say that it's worth all of the Master Balls you’re carrying. Wait, wrong game. Basically, these are immensely valuable Perks as they dramatically improve your civilization. An example of this is Artificial Fertilization, which allows female Nuggets to become pregnant by visiting a Science Lab if there are no male Nuggets around. We’re really using a lot of reproduction examples today, but you get what we mean.


PERK DESCRIBTION EXAMPLES

IMPROVED CLOTHING INNOVATIVE PERK

Advancements in Nugget fashion have finally led to something useful. Nuggets have improved their hide crafting skills enough to make clothing that will keep them warm in extreme winters and help them to endure hot summers. However, due to the clothing being made out of animal hides, tree leaves, and crude threadsNuggets will be weighed down slightly, causing their movement speed to be slowed.

News Message Example

#Nugget_Name has grown tired of using random leaves to cover their sensitive areas, especially after the poison ivy incident last week. They have spent the last few days perfecting a new hide crafting technique that will vastly improve clothing, but avoid the unnecessary itching found in previous iterations.

SLOW BURN MUTATION PERK
The Nugget digestive system is quite a 
marvelous thing. Food goes in one end, gets converted into energy, and then ends up back in the soil through a process we choose not to explain. However, the creating energy bit is important, as that determines how much food a Nugget requires. By increasing the amount of energy produced by food, Nuggets will need less of it.

News Message Example

While #Nugget_Name was laying in bed, their body began to change. No, not from puberty or exposure to radioactive material- from the mutation you applied to reduce the amount of food Nuggets need to complete their tasks.

PERFUME MUTATION PERK
Nuggets have urges. It’s only natural. Thankfully, this train of thought allowed us to isolate it as a biological instinct, which we are able to manipulate to increase the rate at which female Nuggets are willing to reproduce. By activating this mutation, you can increase the fertility rate of your entire civilization. Just be ready for the sudden influx of workers.

News Message Example

Love is in the air! Nuggets are reproducing more than ever, thanks to a little genetic splicing with rabbit DNA. Just look at #Nugget_ Name go! Actually, on second thought, don’t. This really isn’t something anyone should ever have to see. Ew.


Keep in mind that you can only research one Perk at a time per Evolution Tower. Blue Perks will always remain until you research them as they are essential to the game, but all other Perks, such as the Travelling Perks, Rare Perks, and Ultra Rare Perks are only available for a short time before they refresh.

You can see three Perks below: Green, Blue, and Yellow. You can only research one of them at a time. If you select the Blue Perk, then the Green and Yellow ones will refresh and be swapped with other Perks. If you choose the Yellow one, then you will lose the current Green Perk but the Blue ones will always remain. Therefore, you are always left with an important decision to make: do you want to grow your civilization at a faster rate by pursuing Blue Perks or would you rather like to research every available secondary Perk to improve your civilization?



However, be cautious of trying to acquire every secondary Perk you can, as it may break your civilization. It shatters the current balance and may lead to future struggles. Here’s an example: Mike was a cool god. He wanted to research every secondary Perk before acquiring the next Evolution Perk. He began researching all of the fertility-related Perks to bolster his workforce. However, he neglected to notice that more Nuggets were being born than he was able to feed. His civilization eventually dissolves into ruin. Heh, death by snu-snu...


THERE WILL BE THREE
TYPES OF EVOLUTION TOWERS


The Innovation Tower consists of Innovation Perks that help your civilization to advance through the ages. The first Innovation Tower acts more as a neutral tower, called the Sacrifice Tower, which includes both Innovation Perks (buildings and professions) and Mutation Perks (Nugget stat increases). The Sacrifice Tower will be constructed by Nuggets as soon as the Stone Age begins. It includes essential Perks for growing your early civilization and laying the foundation for eras to come.
The other two towers below will be constructed once you advance to the Medieval Era.

The Mutation Tower is going to consist of Power Perks. These Perks will, well, make your civilization more powerful. It includes Mutation Perks that make your Nuggets faster, stronger, and more resilient. It also allows you to research Perks such as Hunting, which unlocks the Hunter’s Hut and Hunter profession; Expeditions, which unlocks the Explorer's Hut and Expeditions; and Defense Towers and similar items. These perks have a large impact on the natural world.

The Harmony Tower will consist of Perks that will help preserve the environment. The planet is a very sensitive entity, and Nuggets are not going to care about preserving it without your guidance. Nature Perks will help keep your planet green and healthy. These Perks include things such as: Keep it Green- Every Nugget will plant at least one tree per year. Solar Power- Generates electricity using natural sunlight. Better Materials- Lowers the Wood and Stone requirements by 3% for construction jobs.


Wait, did you say Sacrifice Towers? Yes, you’ll have to sacrifice Nuggets for certain Ultra Rare Perks in the early stages of the game. These Perks will have a predefined success chance for completing its research. Some Ultra Rare Perks might require something like 5 Nuggets to be sacrificed for a 100% success chance. When an Ultra Rare Perk is selected, you will be taken to a separate screen where you’ll have to specify how many Nuggets you are willing to sacrifice. You can choose 2 out of 5, for instance, and you’ll then have a 40% success chance of success. The system then determines whether or not the research was successful. If it lands anywhere in the remaining 60%, you not only lose the resources you used to begin the process, but also those two Nuggets.

However, Nugget sacrifice can also be done manually by gods who are a little more cruel towards their subjects. There are even sacrifice buildings where you can drop Nuggets for research purposes. Natural curiosity leads these Nuggets to do incredibly crazy things, such as launching themselves into space using a cannon or attempting to fly off a building like a bird. It’s certainly abnormal, but they’ll learn some important facts about gravity and the fragile nature of a mortal body. See, it’s research.


Evolution Towers will evolve through the ages, much like any other building in the game. Thankfully, the need to sacrifice Nuggets for Ultra Rare Perks also gradually disappears. In the Modern Age, these towers transform into skyscrapers that must be run by more Nuggets than in earlier eras, but without the jarring lack of job security that would lead to the sacrifice of employees.

Overall, we feel that this is a much more organic system that will not break the immersion as much as previous iterations. It offers a new level of involvement and thought that you won’t usually find in a typical research screen. It also ensures that you have a different experience every time you play, due to the Travelling Perks that come and go during the game. It also allows us to easily add new Perks (with new buildings, mutations, and professions) or allow for better community modding tools in the future.

We hope you like this concept. This is a fresh take on the typical research system found in the genre, and we really want to hear your feedback about it.

We also want to thank you all yet again for your amazing support. With your help, Crytivo Games remains 100% crowd-funded and maintains a high production quality. Please feel free to leave us all of your ideas and suggestions. Every little bit helps to make the game even better.

Stay awesome!
All the best,
The Crytivo Crew