Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Member Nations of Sponsor Factions in Civilization: Beyond Earth

World Map with Member Nations of Sponsor Factions highlighted

Introduction and Methodology

This guide is meant to be my best guess as to which Old Earth nations are most likely members of each of the eight sponsor factions in Civilization: Beyond Earth ... so before I go any further

BE AWARE THAT THIS IS NOT CANON

Having said that though, even the designers themselves have mentioned in their video about "The Great Mistake" that what they say isn't canon, so it's basically up to ourselves to piece things together.



So I've partially ignored their advice and used what they talk about in this video as one of my sources. So here's a run-down of my sources:

  1. Firaxicon Panel: The Great Mistake in Civilization: Beyond Earth Video dated 20 Oct 2014 by Will Miller and David McDonough
  2. Civilization: Beyond Earth Civilopedia Entries
  3. Civilization: Beyond Earth City Name Script

Basically, I took everything that was said in the video, in the Civilopedia entries and the City Name Script (i.e. determining which languages the city names were based off) and then made a best guess as to which nations were likely to be part of each sponsor faction. Interestingly, there are some contradictory statements/evidence when examining these three sources together but where there are contradicitons I'll identify them and then tell you what I think they really meant.

Oh there's a fourth bit of information that is related to what they said on the Firaxicon Panel. They mentioned that there would be a sea level rise of 20 feet due to climate change, which is about 6 metres for those of us in metric land. I also used this to examine how flooding would affect certain nations and cities (which would in turn potentially alter who the member nations are).

American Reclamation Corporation (ARC)

The American Reclamation Corporation (ARC), as the name implies, is an American corporation. The "Reclamation" part of the name is reference to it starting off as an engineering company specialising in ecological risk mitigation. When the U.S. government was almost helpless to combat climate change, the ARC stepped in (for a fee of course) and fixed their problems. Now ARC is so powerful that it employs almost a quarter of the U.S. workforce and a majority of business in the United States (85%) is done with them. It truly is a megacorporation and for all intents and purposes, basically runs the United States due to its huge influence. This is despite the fact that unlike other sponsor factions, ARC isn't technically a government or political body.

Their influence doesn't just stop at the U.S.A.'s borders - they apparently have significant influence across the world and its likely they're the world's largest company - maybe even the largest economy. During the Firaxicon Panel, Miller and McDonough mentioned, when referring to a Reddit poster's map that Canada and Mexico were part of the ARC too. Being neighbours of the U.S.A., considering ARC CEO Suzanne Fielding's Mexican heritage and the fact that ARC is just so damn rich, this is probably likely and I've decided to go with it.

I'm going to list its member nations in inverted commas since its only through sheer influence and economic clout that these nations are considered ARC's constituency.

"Member nations":
  • Canada
  • Mexico
  • United States of America

Brasilia

Now I'm not sure why this nation/faction is called "Brasilia". I always though Brasilia was the name for the capital of Brazil, unless that's the whole point I suppose - maybe there was a civil war in Brazil between loyalists and rebels and the loyalists (situated in the capital) won. Who knows?

Apparently, after the Great Mistake, Brasilia became a military superpower and was able to consistently send its veteran troops to Peacekeeping Forces around the globe. There is no mention however of Brazil or Brasilia taking over other nations or other nations forming a union with them. Also, Miller and McDonough, designers of Beyond Earth when shown a map posted on Reddit representing the factions said that having Brasilia encompass the whole of South America was a bit ambitious. Finally, all the city names for the Brasilian faction are in the language of Portuguese, the native language of Brazil, indicating its unlikely any of the Spanish speaking neighbours in South America are member nations.

Consequently, I'm pretty happy in saying that Brazil is the only member nation of Brasilia. That's not to say Brasilia doesn't have significant influence over Latin America though (which it does mention in the Civilopedia)...

Member Nations:
  • Brazil

Franco-Iberia

Franco-Iberia is a bit trickier to do than ARC and Brasilia - mainly because the geo-politics of Europe is that more complex. At the very least, you can add the nations of France (which make the "Franco" part of the name) and Spain as well as Portugal (which make up the "Iberia" part of the name).

When Miller and McDonough, designers of Beyond Earth were shown a Redditor's impression of Franco-Iberia, they said it seemed a bit small (the Redditor only really focused on France, Spain, Portugal and Italy). Miller and McDonough said they envisaged Franco-Iberia to be a version 2.0 of the European Union and consequently have most of Europe as its members. They did mention that the U.K., Germany and the Nordic/Scandinavian countries should be unaffiliated so I too have left them out.

So the next step for adding members were finding previous members of the European Union that weren't the U.K., Germany or Scandinavia. They also couldn't be Eastern European countries as they're apparently now part of the Slavic Federation as you will see later on.

I also left Switzerland out too since... well you know... they're Switzerland.

This resulted in a lot of Western European and Mediterranean nations being added. But I wasn't finished yet.

Apparently, according to the Civilopedia, North Africa eventually joined Franco-Iberia but in terms of nations I could only find two mentioned in the Civilopedia: Algeria and Tunisia. Digging up the City Name Script for Franco-Iberia I also discovered a colony name based off the name of a Moroccan queen.

Member Nations:
  • Algeria
  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Croatia
  • Czech Republic
  • Cyprus
  • Greece
  • Ireland
  • Italy
  • Luxembourg
  • Malta
  • Morocco
  • France
  • Netherlands
  • Portugal
  • Slovenia
  • Spain
  • Tunisia

People's African Union (PAU)

The People's African Union (PAU) is another tricky one as there isn't really that much information as to which of the many nations in Africa are part of it. Miller and McDonough have mentioned that not all of Africa are part of the PAU but that its members were mainly from Sub-Saharan Africa. That's still quite a lot of countries but thankfully the Civilopedia and the City Name Script reveals more.

I'm pretty certain Somalia is one of the nations because (a) Samatar Jama Barre is born in Somaliland, a more stable region of present-day Somalia and (b) many city names in the game are of Somali origin. The City Name Script also reveals many names based on languages found in South Africa and Kenya so I'm also going to say they're part of the PAU too.

The Civilopedia also mentions that members of the PAU are former African Union and Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) members. Since most of Africa is part of the African Union I just focused on the COMESA members and have managed to grab quite a few more African nations from Southern and Eastern Africa. I excluded nations that left COMESA since they're probably unlikely to want to join v2.0 of it. I also excluded any Saharan African nations (since Miller and McDonough specifically mentioned sub-Saharan states only).

Member Nations:
  • Burundi
  • Comoros
  • Democratic Republic of Congo
  • Djibouti
  • Eritrea
  • Ethiopia
  • Kenya
  • Madagascar
  • Malawi
  • Mauritius
  • Rwanda
  • Seychelles
  • South Africa
  • South Sudan
  • Swaziland
  • Uganda
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe

Slavic Federation

As the name implies, the Slavic Federation is a federation of nations that share Slavic heritage and culture. The Civilopedia states that many Eastern European nations that would have initially sought European Union membership were persuaded to join the Federation - so I'm thinking like a Warsaw Pact v2.0. In particular, the Civilopedia mentions that the Slavic Federation's Expedition Leader, General Vadim Kozlov, gained a formal education across several Federation cities which happen to be situated in Poland, Belarus and the Ukraine.

Examining the City Name Script file reveals some more countries. Some Slavic Federation cities have Bulgarian, Kazakh, Slovakian, Serbian and Moldovan names. Consequently, I've also added these nations to the members list.

Since it turns out a lot of these nations are former Soviet Union or Warsaw Pact nations, I decided to fill the rest of the Slavic Federation with the countries below (despite current geo-politics suggesting otherwise).

Member Nations:
  • Albania
  • Armenia
  • Azerbaijan
  • Belarus
  • Bulgaria
  • Estonia
  • Georgia
  • Hungary
  • Kazakhstan
  • Kyrgyzstan
  • Latvia
  • Lithuania
  • Moldova
  • Poland
  • Romania
  • Russia
  • Serbia
  • Slovakia
  • Tajikistan
  • Turkmenistan
  • Ukraine
  • Uzbekistan

Kavithan Protectorate

The Kavithan Protectorate is basically described as a theocracy - a theocracy based off a new religion that incorporates ideas from three major religions on the sub-continent called Thakurism, founded by Kavitha Thakur's father, Raj Thakur.

Now according to Miller and McDonough, Pakistan and India actually unite at one point, despite their cold relations towards each others in the present day. This is because as part of the Great Mistake lore, a "dirty bomb" is detonated in one of China's cities, China blames Iran (who they have poor relations with thanks to competing interests in Afghanistan), China launches tactical nukes at Iran, Iran retaliates and so does Pakistan (an ally of Iran), and then China nukes Iran, Pakistan and North Korea ("for good measure") before a NATO fleet off China's coast dissuades them from any further nuclear attacks. Pakistan figures the enemy of their enemy is their friend and hence picks the lesser of two evils at that point in time and sides with India which eventually becomes the Kavithan Protectorate. Since Iran was an ally of Pakistan's, I've added them too, despite much of their land (and Pakistan's) now being irradiated. I also decided to add them because one of the KP city names is Iranian in origin.

I've also added the mountainous nations bordering China, Nepal and Bhutan, as part of the KP, mainly because they have more in common with India than China. I've also added Sri Lanka as part of the KP for the same reason - i.e. Sri Lanka having more in common with India than other nations.

With a 6m rise in sea level, most of Bangladesh is well and truly underwater including its capital Dhaka. I suspect many refugees flee to other countries but any remaining citizens would most likely see benefit in joining the KP.

Member Nations:
  • Bangladesh
  • Bhutan
  • India
  • Iran
  • Nepal
  • Pakistan
  • Sri Lanka

Pan-Asian Cooperative (PAC)

The Pan-Asian Cooperative's primary member is China who along with Iran and Pakistan were involved in a short nuclear war. During this exchange, China apparently nuked North Korea, "for good measure". It's likely that China took opportunity of this attack to either occupy North Korea or at least negotiate from a position of power through gunboat diplomacy (or should that be "nuclear warhead" diplomacy). Consequently, North Korea is part of the PAC.

I've also included South Korea to the Cooperative which is a controversial choice, especially considering current geo-politics and the fact even the designers, Miller and McDonough, mentioned that South Korea wouldn't likely be in the PAC due to them sharing more in common with Japan than China. However, the Civilopedia states that PAC actually helped on a project called the "New City Seoul" project (which sounds like South Korea to me) and not only that but in the PAC City Name List there are a few Korean names in there. Consequently I've decided to add South Korea in the PAC since I consider the game's Civilopedia and script files to more likely be canon. At least until Firaxis retcons it.

Mongolia was added to the PAC due to Miller and McDonough mentioning during their Firaxicon video that it might as well be included.

While the Civilopedia does mention some involvement between China and Central Asia, I'm uncertain whether this is with respect to actual membership or whether it's just influence (e.g. Shanghai Cooperation Organisation which has Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan as its Central Asian members).

I was also considering placing Cambodia as part of PAC (considering Daoming Sochua's heritage) but I decided to err on the side of caution instead only placing Vietnam as part of the PAC because of PAC's City Name List containing Vietnamese names.

Member Nations:
  • China
  • Mongolia
  • North Korea
  • South Korea
  • Vietnam

Polystralia

The name "Polystralia" evokes images of Australia and Polynesia which is exactly what Polystralia encompasses. However, it doesn't end there and apparently according to the Firaxicon panel with Miller and McDonough (as well as some subtle hints in the Civilopedia) Polystralia also includes South-East Asia.

I've tried to be as inclusive as possible with Polystralia, including most South-East Asian nations (except for Vietnam), Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific nations. In terms of countries that are specifically mentioned, Australia, Indonesia, Vanuatu and Samoa are mentioned in the Civilopedia and in the Polystralian City Name List, there are Maori (New Zealand), Tahitian, Malaysian and Filipino names. The interesting one in this list is Tahiti since it's technically a French territory although there's been some movement in the pro-independence camp in recent years - so who knows, maybe Tahiti will be independent hundreds of years in the future?

I haven't included the nations of Kiribati, Marshall Islands and Tuvalu since unfortunately with a 6m rise in sea level due to climate change, they are unlikely to exist. In fact, some low-lying island nations already have contingency plans where they're buying up land in other countries to relocate their citizens in case the worst transpires.

Member Nations:
  • Australia
  • Brunei
  • Cambodia
  • East Timor
  • Fiji
  • Indonesia
  • Laos
  • Malaysia
  • Micronesia
  • Myanmar
  • Nauru
  • New Zealand
  • Palau
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Philippines
  • Samoa
  • Singapore
  • Solomon Islands
  • Tahiti
  • Thailand
  • Tonga
  • Vanuatu

Conclusion

So what do you think? Do the nations I've picked match closely to your expectations or are they far out? What do you think the designers had in mind when it came to the factions? Please post your thoughts below.

Also, if you want to see the Steam version of this guide, check it out at the below link.

[ LINK: Steam version of guide ]

2 comments:

  1. Please do a new map for Rising Tide! I really want to know where the 4 new nations are!

    ReplyDelete