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Question on Famine losses

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Rozwi_Game10
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Question on Famine losses

Post by Rozwi_Game10 on Sat Aug 05, 2017 9:36 am

So I wasn't able to gather in enough food or grain supplies to meet the required amount needed before November, and now famine has struck this turn (November). This turn my game position informs me that I've suffered a considerable population loss due to this.

Is this population loss, due to the (1701) famine, a one time occurrence during the farming year?

Or do I get to enjoy such a loss of population each month until the next harvest in 1702? (which may, or may not, be a good harvest)

- and, possibly its linked to the outbreak of famine, my EH has dropped (which is understandable if it is linked to the famine)

Any help is appreciated.

Thanks

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Re: Question on Famine losses

Post by Stuart Bailey on Sat Aug 05, 2017 10:09 am

Rozwi_Game10 wrote:So I wasn't able to gather in enough food or grain supplies to meet the required amount needed before November, and now famine has struck this turn (November). This turn my game position informs me that I've suffered a considerable population loss due to this.

Is this population loss, due to the (1701) famine, a one time occurrence during the farming year?

Or do I get to enjoy such a loss of population each month until the next harvest in 1702? (which may, or may not, be a good harvest)

- and, possibly its linked to the outbreak of famine, my EH has dropped (which is understandable if it is linked to the famine)

Any help is appreciated.

Thanks

Famine is a slow killer with people dieing over a long period of time (mostly due to diseases due which they can not fight off due to being underfeed) but for game book keeping purposes you suffer a one off hit to your population base in November.

Naturally, a lower population base means fewer recruits and tax payers going forward unless you can do something to restore your reduced population Sad . Conquest of another tribe may help Very Happy Very Happy

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Rozwi_Game10
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Re: Question on Famine losses

Post by Rozwi_Game10 on Sat Aug 05, 2017 10:22 am

Stuart Bailey wrote:
for game book keeping purposes you suffer a one off hit to your population base in November.

Thanks Stuart.

I thought (and hoped!) this was how it would work.

If its of any use to people to read what happened in my case:

October
197,500 tons of grain needed before November 1701 to avoid famine

November
98,750 souls lost to the famine of 1701

Famine is something else that I've, now, experienced in the game.

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Re: Question on Famine losses

Post by Nexus06 on Sun Aug 06, 2017 3:49 pm

In a couple of weeks i'll give you a outlook about what's happend in huge famine striking huge population.

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Re: Question on Famine losses

Post by Rosales-Uber-Alles on Mon Aug 07, 2017 11:39 am

Harvest failure is strange.

Spain suffered losses of 2.1 million tons - enough to feed 21 million people by the game rules. This makes no sense to me at all as Spain has only 16 million in the Empire across the globe! This suggests a global failure to plant/harvest crops this year.
The famine, if just Iberian peninsula, should mean a complete and total loss of all population by the game rule calculation.

In mitigation we've had 1.3 million tons donated so we are 800,000 tones short, or 8 million people unfed. As i said in an earlier post - a position killer like no other!

However, the 'Rozwi' calculation means 400,000 deaths...

400,000 is something we can cope with as, in general, the Spain Aristocracy hates the poor!

By the way - if you are worried about fewer recruits as a result of famine then just drive your EH down and you'll get plenty of extra, just have some spare gold in the bank to offset the tax reduction...don't forget to re-populate your agricultural areas, at least in part.

Will check the figures in a month or so and see if the death figures are global, European or just Iberian peninsula.
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Rozwi_Game10
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Re: Question on Famine losses

Post by Rozwi_Game10 on Mon Aug 07, 2017 12:49 pm

Pass.

I didn't know - or had forgotten if I'd read them - that there was a printed formula for famines in the game, to be honest.

Possibly, in the Rozwi example I've provided, I've not suffered as greatly as others because the population exists on a hand-to-mouth diet to start with? I've read of a SE African tribals living on a meal in the morning and nothing else except what they could grab and chew during the day - this being the norm for an active, strenous day of military training. So 'tightening one's belt' isn't too novel an experience for Rozwi commoners.

I've also been supplementing the diet with meat in the months leading up to, and including, November, so, possibly, breaking the level of dependence on mealie grain for the national diet. Doling out hundreds of tons of meat to the kraal headmen, with orders to see that the mealie allowance per person is rationed and supplemented with meat. A nationwide culling of wild animals was carried out, the commoners will hunt for themselves anyway, and there's also an active army whose sole purpose is the 'Army of Hunting'. Maybe that's helped swing modifiers in my favour when working out the loss of life?

I did also sacrifice to the ancestors. Slaughtered meat and a human male. You just never know...!

When I think about it, what might work for me in Africa probably won't in Europe or the like.

I've an armed military roaming the countryside killing things. Such would scare neighbouring countries in Europe, never mind the peaceful civilians. There's also large quantities of wild, dangerous animals and little to no farm lands in Rozwi, and the wild animals aren't the preserve of the nobility so any one can hunt. Playing an African tribal position has its drawbacks, as I've less options and freedoms than most of the other players, but there just might be a few benefits. Something for me to ponder.

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Re: Question on Famine losses

Post by Nexus06 on Mon Aug 07, 2017 1:00 pm

Rosales-Uber-Alles wrote:Harvest failure is strange.

Spain suffered losses of 2.1 million tons - enough to feed 21 million people by the game rules. This makes no sense to me at all as Spain has only 16 million in the Empire across the globe! This suggests a global failure to plant/harvest crops this year.
The famine, if just Iberian peninsula, should mean a complete and total loss of all population by the game rule calculation.

In mitigation we've had 1.3 million tons donated so we are 800,000 tones short, or 8 million people unfed. As i said in an earlier post - a position killer like no other!

However, the 'Rozwi' calculation means 400,000 deaths...

400,000 is something we can cope with as, in general, the Spain Aristocracy hates the poor!

By the way - if you are worried about fewer recruits as a result of famine then just drive your EH down and you'll get plenty of extra, just have some spare gold in the bank to offset the tax reduction...don't forget to re-populate your agricultural areas, at least in part.

Will check the figures in a month or so and see if the death figures are global, European or just Iberian peninsula.

I do not think you are going to loose the population. In the worst of the worst scenario, a famine could kill 20% of the population (historically) and i think Richard has crafted the rules to obey this fact. A huge famine like that one you're suffering (and good for you you find someone that provided you 1 million tonns of grain, i didn,t) has not only slaughtered the actual crop, but forced your population to deplete also the grain that they put aside for next year farming.
In this case, you should make yourself a point of finding more grain to supply them for next year farming, or you might fall into a streak of 2/3 years of famine, that could lead your population to lose 50% of them, and increase chances of revolting.

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Re: Question on Famine losses

Post by Thelittleemperor on Tue Aug 08, 2017 2:08 pm

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Rozwi_Game10
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Re: Question on Famine losses

Post by Rozwi_Game10 on Tue Aug 08, 2017 2:43 pm

Interesting to read that it'll be used for animal feed due to the Mediterranean heatwave. Something else to consider in the game Actually, no, I'd rather the GM didn't consider the wider implications of famine in the game, as suffering human and livestock losses at the same time would be a real pain. Although, I suppose you could just cull the livestock for food anyway. Hmm, there's never a simple solution, is there.
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Re: Question on Famine losses

Post by Deacon on Tue Aug 08, 2017 6:22 pm


I picked up Saxony in a game that had been hit by a couple of famines and lost literally 50% of its population. It was a rare set of circumstances, but...

I think the position was unplayable except for a masochist.

I think that no position should be able to have something that bad happen to them through random chance that early in the game.

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Re: Question on Famine losses

Post by jamesbond007 on Tue Aug 08, 2017 6:35 pm

I agree. Famine loss within the first two years seems harsh.

But, after saying that. Richard would say. " well, you have had time to address potential famines from the very first turn. Nightsoilmen can be raised very early."

I would like to see a couple of years grace. But then, famines would be eradicated from the game pretty much.
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Re: Question on Famine losses

Post by Deacon on Tue Aug 08, 2017 6:41 pm


Well, it is interesting that Famines are position killers in the early game, but plagues hardly seem to exist.

Most of the early game options for famine just shift the odds in your favor (night soilmen). They don't prevent disaster, they just make it less likely.

What if you could buy grain contracts in January? They deliver in June, and the grain is wasted if your harvest is normal, but cover you if the harvest is low.

Historically, grain moved around the world a lot.
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Re: Question on Famine losses

Post by Rozwi_Game10 on Tue Aug 08, 2017 7:49 pm

I just view harvest failure as a probable result with the Rozwi position, to be honest. Famine in Africa isn't exactly uncommon.
But there is a varied amount of ecosystems and large areas of good soils with what Rozwi has, so something can be done.
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Re: Question on Famine losses

Post by Jason on Tue Aug 08, 2017 8:49 pm

I do think fishing is an often ignored way of avoiding famine in the event of harvest failure. In G10 it took only half the available fish that Scottish fishermen caught to offset my grain shortage. There were some changes going on in the migration routes of Herring, for example, so there weren't so many in the Baltic (more in the North Sea) but in a time when we have fishing quotas in Europe it's easy to forget how full the sea was of fish. Met a lecturer from Aberdeen University recently, specialises in the history of North Europe fishing, was telling me of documents from Glory time and just before that talk of the number of fish, He told me about a SWedish source from the late 1690s that said you could stick a halberd into the Baltic and it would stand upright because of the number of fish...ok am sure the document is overstating the case but still, worth bearing in mind

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Re: Question on Famine losses

Post by Stuart Bailey on Tue Aug 08, 2017 9:57 pm

Rules show that 1 Ton of meat or Fish will replace two tons of grain.

Fishing is good but not much use if you are landlocked like Saxony or Bavaria.

My feeling is that some areas with low population and large land area's such as the Polish Commonwealth, The Morea & the Crimean Khanate and perhaps later the America's should produce a natural surplus which would allow players to buy grain from the Historic grain markets like Danzig & Riga and so save a position from early destruction (even if they had to go into debt to do it).

May be a bit complex to imclude but some area's like the UDP, Constantinople, and Venice should also have a natural shortage of grain (partly lack of land to population but also due to using land for more profitable uses) and rely on regular imports.

Having area's which produce a natural surplus and perhaps others need to import would add a certain historic twist to the game......The UDP Sweden and other powers which rely on Grain Shipments via Danzig & Riga should be very worried about anything getting in the way of this trade.

To keep up the importance of these trades also fill some of the huge surplus produced by hardy grain later in games needs to be cut down. Feels a bit odd when in a dacade you go from worrying about every gram of grain to drowning in the bloody stuff!
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Re: Question on Famine losses

Post by Jason on Tue Aug 08, 2017 10:09 pm

Not sure landlocked should present such an issue, could come to an arrangement with a neighbour with a coastline to either allow you to establish a fishing industry in a port of theirs (no military, just fishermen) or allow your fishermen to sail up rivers to the sea. Alternatively river fisheries are an option. Are Saxony and Bavaria Catholic? If so they must have monastic establishments in their territory and if there was one thing monks were good at it was water management, including fish ponds...
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Re: Question on Famine losses

Post by Deacon on Tue Aug 08, 2017 10:12 pm

Jason wrote:Not sure landlocked should present such an issue, could come to an arrangement with a neighbour with a coastline to either allow you to establish a fishing industry in a port of theirs (no military, just fishermen) or allow your fishermen to sail up rivers to the sea. Alternatively river fisheries are an option. Are Saxony and Bavaria Catholic? If so they must have monastic establishments in their territory and if there was one thing monks were good at it was water management, including fish ponds...

Those are both excellent ideas.
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Re: Question on Famine losses

Post by Rozwi_Game10 on Wed Aug 09, 2017 9:31 am

River fisheries is something I was going to look into this turn, funnily enough.
And water management is a long term goal, as I'm conscious of droughts.

Do droughts occur in the game?
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Re: Question on Famine losses

Post by Deacon on Wed Aug 09, 2017 1:30 pm


Droughts aren't a thing, except maybe one of the explanations of a poor harvest. If you come up with a strategy that improves your water supply, then I imagine it would work like irrigation canals and increase your chances of a good harvest.


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Re: Question on Famine losses

Post by Stuart Bailey on Thu Aug 10, 2017 12:32 am

Rozwi_Game10 wrote:River fisheries is something I was going to look into this turn, funnily enough.
And water management is a long term goal, as I'm conscious of droughts.

Do droughts occur in the game?

In the "Defoe Illuminations" (page 22) their is a section on water wells.

Basically you can dig wells, shore up the sides with stone/bricks and use them like Croc's free water holes using a bucket on a rope to make sure Rozwi Cattle and Villages have a improved water supply for drinking. Your Chief's probably not fussed about the odd woman or slave having to walk 5 miles and get eat but are probably all in favour of anything which saves valuable cattle.

If you want to pump enough water to from wells to irrigate fields the Rozwi are probably going have to import knowlege of water wheel's and windmills. Its possible that by 1700 they may have had Windmills at the Dutch Cape Colony? Perhaps for grinding grain but perhaps to power water pumps. Pumps/water wheels can also be powered by Oxen/Cattle/Donkey's as well as the wind to bring up water.

Sadly for the Rozwi before they can move onto the "High Tec" stuff they need to dig the holes (in the correct place.....what are your Witch Doctors like at Water Divining?) and that means dealing with the great Rozwi problem........their lack of good metal Spades!
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Re: Question on Famine losses

Post by Deacon on Thu Aug 10, 2017 1:02 am


This is all a good thing to check with Richard. It's not always clear what technology you have access to and what you don't. I think he gives the non-European positions more leeway than perhaps historically to help them be a bit more competitive.
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Re: Question on Famine losses

Post by Rozwi_Game10 on Thu Aug 10, 2017 10:52 am

Yes, its all something that I'm going to be looking into in the game - asking questions and seeing what research needs to be done, also asking (in the game) my non-African contacts what they propose would help.

I watched a documentary on Sri Lanka and it featured the ancient irrigation tank reservoirs, and I realised it was something worth exploring in the game.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ancient_constructions_of_Sri_Lanka

With the Rozwi position you've areas that were, historically, Portuguese territory and feature (once abandoned) settlements that contain European architecture and methods. Obviously this doesn't provide technical knowledge, but can serve as opportunities for ideas to be formed. There's also the Swahili traders and their Arab links and methods, Rozwi traders visiting Zanzibar, etc., and being exposed to such non-tribal knowledge. I can use these as arguments for the improvement of the position, as opposed the historic examples of other Bantu Nguni peoples who were still not-advanced technologically by the 1870s - though, even when they lived in relative close proximity with a Western society and it's advances, they still lived and used traditional practices, so it might be a difficult question as to how far can the Rozwi position go considering the technological levels of Tribal nations by 1900 CE.

But, to quote the words of Parakrama Bahu I, 11531186 CE: "Let not even a drop of rain water go to the sea without benefiting man". So its looking into water management first - actually, its securing the largest supply of water in the area (to the west of Khami) first - then we'll see what else needs to happen. [if the GMs reading this, he might just be saying to himself; 'Oh, is that why he's doing that.']

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Re: Question on Famine losses

Post by J Flower on Sat Aug 12, 2017 10:19 am

Problem with famine losses calculation is probably because it won't effect all your population. Grain shortage effects the poor more than the Church & Nobility. Plus it is not only a shortage with regards feeding people but also livestock feed for the winter months.

This is probably why your EH takes such a knock, because the breeding stock on the agricultural areas is decimated( albeit it helps feed the people) plus the better of subjects have had to invest their savings in buying food.Plus malnutrition effects the remaining population for the longer term.

Hence a direct line between shortage & deaths related to it is not such a simple one.


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