Orders and Requests
After doing the empire level, there are only four tabs left for us to explore: the bottom four. The two tabs with the S on them can be ignored: they show the scenario's story/instructions, victory text and lose text. You have to write those in the XML file: you cannot edit them through these two tabs.
That leaves us with the two bottom-most tabs: P and C. The P tab has four sub-sections, accessible through the buttons at the bottom left of the screen:
- Events: this allows you to enable and disable "events". These events have, as far as I know, no effect on the gameplay in Caesar IV and is a remnant from Children of the Nile
- Building Restrictions: allows you to enable and disable buildings
- Orders/Requests: lets you set up orders and requests from Caesar for goods. Note that military requests are set up in the .cs script file
- Gifts: lets you define the gifts the player can give to Caesar
We'll discuss the building restrictions and gifts on the next page; this page explains how to set up orders and requests.
As you may know from playing the game, there is a difference between an order and a request. If you receive an order and do not comply with it, you lose favor. If you do fulfil it, you don't get any favor. With requests it's the other way around: complying with a request will gain you favor, but ignoring it won't cost you favor.
First, in the top part of the screen is a list of all orders and requests, with four buttons next to it:
- Adds the request in the form below it as a new order/request
- Updates the currently selected request
- Clears the form below it so you start with a blank form to add a new request
- Deletes the currently selected request
- Check for order blank for request
- At the end of this line is a checkbox, which does exactly as the text says: if you leave it blank, it's a request, if you check it, it's an order.
- This is a short name used to identify requests in the list above. The official scenarios use a special naming scheme but you don't have to follow this. The scheme: start with ORD (order) or REQ (request), add an underscore, then add a single letter denoting the type of good, then the full name of the requested good. The single letters are: F (food), B (basic goods), L (luxury goods), E (exotic goods), and M (military).
- This is a dropdown list with numbers 0-4. As far as we know this doesn't do anything so leave it at the default of 0.
- Select the type of good here. Don't choose water or fountain water since the player won't be able to fulfil requests for them.
- Should speak for itself
- Start week
- The time at which the request/order is made. This is counted from the start of the scenario. There are four weeks per month, and 48 weeks per year. If the scenario starts halfway through February, a request set with a start week of 96 will occur halfway through February, two years into the scenario. All further measures are also in weeks.
- Recurrence time
- Whether the request recurs. The time you put in here (in weeks) is the time between the time of fulfilment of the request by the player (or the deadline if the request is not met), and the time of the next request. If you enter 0 here, the request does not recur.
- The random time (in weeks) between the scheduled request and the actual request.
- Favor reward
- The number of favor points the player gets when he or she fulfils the request on time. Normally set to zero for orders, and set to 5 or 10 (or any other positive number) for requests.
- Favor penalty
- The number of points subtracted from the player's favor rating when he or she does not fulfil the request. This is normally set to zero for requests (no penalty), and to a positive number for orders.
- Deadline weeks
- Number of weeks the player has to fulfil the request. Decent times are between half a year (24 weeks) and 1.5 years (72 weeks).
- First warning
- The time when the first warning/reminder should be shown to the player. Normally this warning is shown when half of the time to fulfil has elapsed. So for a request with a deadline of a year, this message would be shown 6 months after the time of the request the deadline. Put in the number of weeks since the start of the request.
- Second warning
- Normally shown a month before the deadline, so you would set this number to the "deadline week" value minus 4
Note that the difference between orders and requests generally means the favor reward. However, since you can fill in the favor reward yourself this difference is just made by the designer. Therefore it's also possible to set up orders/requests that have both a favor penalty when the player doesn't fulfill the request, and a favor reward if the player does fulfill the request on time.
The bottom part of the form (the message heading, body, and failure texts) can be ignored: these texts are set in the XML file.
When setting up orders and requests, make sure they are reasonable quantities, and allow the player to build up the city before asking for large amounts of (expensive) goods.