Talk:Technology tree

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I'm sure someone put a lot of effort into the recommended tech tree here, but wouldn't it belong more on the page of the game?

Deleted text: There is no possibility of a technological singularity, and all tech trees terminate at a stage where no further research is possible. First, this doesn't come from philosophy, but more from the complexity of designing game art for an infinite number of future technologies. :) Second, Civilization tech tree doesn't terminate. You can still research Future Technology 1, Future Technology 2, etc. One may say it's not very precise or realistic, but I would ask in turn - is Pottery or Chivalry precise or realistic? It's a game. Furthermore, technological singularity is an outcome in Alpha Centauri. And some degree of technological singularity is possible in Civ if you grow fast enough. It's possible to have new advances coming every turn in the final stages of the game, compared with every 20-50 turns in the beginning. Paranoid 14:13, 8 September 2005 (UTC)


Should it be made clear that most "tech trees" are in fact not trees at all?

If you mean arbourous, that's tree. However, it's pretty clear this whole article relates to computers, which does have trees.

I would assume the first editor was referring to the fact that most tech trees are actually graphs - a given technology may have more than one parent and more than one child. But the Complexity section in the current article already implicitly mentions that. (talk) 18:27, 16 May 2008 (UTC)

Reading through the article once more and carefully, I find that the tech tree and the association with the respective games isn't made very clear. A very important difference which I feel is not being made here, is that Tech tree has actually 3 destinct applications, across the Real-Time & Turn Based strategy games.
First there's the TBS Tech Tree, which is the oldest type possibly. This version allows one to upgrade their material through the act of research conducted from a non in-game building (mostly) and increases various aspects of the targetted object, which can be a unit, a specific form of attack-type, resource-gathering, new equipment, acceleration upgrades etc. This version of Tech Tree is usually equal for all races/factions at its core. However, it can provide certain factions with unique stuff.
The second version is the straight forward sequence of base-building in the RTS Tech Tree. Here, the Tech Tree is the sequence in which specific buildings must be built in order to unlock more powerful technology. In general, the buildings declare the "Tree" because they determine the sequence needed to unlock the specific unit of choice. This version of tech tree can exist entirely without the need to Research. Starcraft is a prime example here.
Lastly there there's the race/faction specific research tech tree. In this version a player has (nearly) all the important facilities to produce resource harvesters and military units and defensive structures, but research must be conducted into improving upon the 'Starting Tech'. For instance, when researching upgrades to existing weapons, one can unlock new weapon-types. This version of a tech tree can be as limited to only having some levels in upgrading a specific weapon to its max potential, or it is as extensive as ongoing research opening up new weapons and equipment through a long sequence. Warzone 2100 is a good example of utilizing a very extensive tech tree. (talk) 11:23, 17 December 2015 (UTC)


Was X-COM the first game to have tech trees? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 09:41, 1 June 2006

I believe Dune 2 was. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 03:50, 22 May 2007

Mega Lo Mania had tech trees in 1991, the year before Dune 2. Adding a short paragraph on history. Mikkel 08:35, 23 May 2007 (UTC)

Dune 2 is real time strategy with NO tech tree. It belongs to Mega Lo Mania as said, anc later on first Civilization. Even Xcom has made it so nice with Ufopedia and aliens :-) — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:22, 26 July 2014 (UTC)

I know for a fact that it may not be the first to actually use a Tech Tree in an RTS, but please, look at the tech tree for Warzone 2100 for a moment and the extensiveness of that particular one. Other than turnbased games such as civilization, WZ2100 is the only real time Strategy Game I know of with a tech tree as extensive to rival civ. (talk) 13:36, 11 December 2015 (UTC)

Skill tree?[edit]

Why does Skill tree redirect here? It seems to me that a skill tree in a CRPG is very different from a tech tree in a strategy game. NeonMerlin 23:52, 9 August 2006 (UTC)

Write it then, WP:BOLD. But for now this is what it is most similar, there isn't that much difference in concept... Mathmo Talk 02:15, 14 February 2007 (UTC)

Requested move[edit]

The following discussion is an archived debate of the proposal. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the debate was PAGE MOVED per unopposed request. -GTBacchus(talk) 00:30, 8 February 2007 (UTC)

Tech treeTechnology tree — current title is an abreviation Vicarious 06:56, 2 February 2007 (UTC)


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reference to real technology[edit]

I'm interested in the relevance of the "tech tree" idea to the discussion of scientific advancement and to scientific education. I wonder whether there is any information in wikipedia on this subject- if so it should be linked here, if not then (perhaps) there should be. Anyway, I'd be happy to speak with anyone also interested in the non-game relevance of the idea.

Falcor84 20:20, 23 April 2007 (UTC)

i recently came across an MIT media visualization of economic data, showing a computed real-life tech tree made from international export/import product data. It shows the relationships between various industrial products, quite interesting . i first saw it in an RSA talk: César Hidalgo on Why Information Grows (@17:15) which i can't link to. It'd be nice to put this work into the article somehow Roidroid (talk) 02:51, 5 July 2015 (UTC)

more on using tech trees for real technology[edit]

I have been harbouring an idea of having a sort of "futuropedia" website, on which one can write article of something that could be accomplished IF some prerequisite technology existed (which does not yet have to exist). Then that could be used as prerequisite technology for other new ideas and so on. If actually some of the prerequisites actually becomes reality, then status of the article would be changed and references added to the research. I can only quess how much such site would be vandalized by "funny" ideas, but if used properly and not going too much into science fiction, it might point out areas worth researching if some specific area would give rise to great amounts of applications.


i would like to said that greater resource needs in more advanced tech isn't counter to technological singularity at all. technological singularity discuss the trend of increase development rate in our world; it doesn't note the cost. technology are developing faster because there is an increase in capability(better methods/communication), population(more scientist and labs) and economy(more money!). it games, it is also effected by economy, hence one without a strong economy will have more diffculty teching. Akinkhoo 17:31, 30 June 2007 (UTC)

"Unreferenced" tag removed[edit]

I've removed the "Unreferenced" tag because for most of tihs topic the ultimate authority is the relevant game's manual and the name of the game is sufficient reference.Philcha 03:22, 24 June 2007 (UTC)

Should we remove the "Philosophy" section?[edit]

I have serious reservations about this section:

  • I can think of exceptions to all items expect "higher is better". Upgrades / refits have to be paid for in many turn-based games (e.g. Master of Orion II) as well as in the RTS games mentioned. In many games (e.g. Master of Orion) the relationship between research time and expenditure is worse than linear, e.g. you don't get technology X twice as fast if you allocate twice as much research capacity to it - in general the linear relationship only applies to games which allow only one research project at a time. A few games (e.g. Spaceward Ho!]) allow "lucky dip" research, where you don't know what you'll get and the results are sometimes amazing and sometimes disappointing.
  • What does the entire section add to the article? Would the article be less useful without it?

Philcha 03:46, 24 June 2007 (UTC)

I added the WP:NOR tag to the philosophy section. I agree with deleting the philosophy section. Aaronk24 05:28, 5 July 2007 (UTC)
I've removed the "Philosophy" section.
I've also removed the "References" tag again, since as I said before the games' manuals are the ultimate authority.Philcha 23:51, 9 July 2007 (UTC)


There's some overlap between the sections "Types of Tech Tree" and "Implementation", and neither is complete on its own - "Types of Tech Tree" mainly covers TBS and "Implementation" mainly covers RTS.

I suggest merging them as "Types of Tech Tree" with this structure:

  • Prerequisites. In many RTSs you need particular buildings to research specific techs. In most TBSs the prerequisite is one or more lower-level techs, with no dependency on buildings.
  • Complexity (simplest is MOO, most complex is Civ).
  • All techs available? Some RTSs make different techs available to different races / cultures (especially Starcraft), most TBSs make all techs available to all races. MOO is complex in this respect: the full tree is the same for all; but in each game each player gets a random subset of the full tech tree; but the Psilons get the widest selection of techs.Philcha 00:07, 10 July 2007 (UTC)
  • Balance between civilian and military techs. In many RTS games tech advances are almost exlusivley military (e.g. StarCraft). But in most TBS and some RTS games the research and production costs of top-end military techs are so high that you have to build up your economy and research productivity first (RTS - Age of Empires, Empire Earth, where one of the most significant costs is going up an epoch; TBS - the Civilisation series and Master of Orion series).Philcha 16:53, 13 July 2007 (UTC)

Done. Philcha (talk) 18:36, 10 December 2007 (UTC)

"Needs references" tag[edit]

I suggest this should be removed from the article as a whole because the games themselves are the ultimate authority. Philcha (talk) 18:11, 10 December 2007 (UTC)

Done Philcha (talk) 13:33, 16 December 2007 (UTC)

As an aside, I've managed to dig up some pretty good sources. There's a lot of information to mine in them, but there's also a lot of opinion. Perhaps we can exercise a bit of judgment, and incorporate the parts that are true, and leave out or qualify the parts that seem more like point of view.

I'm busy, but I'm sure myself or someone else can get around to using these at some point in the future. Randomran (talk) 01:24, 19 September 2008 (UTC)

good source[edit]

I stumbled across a good source on tech trees here: [3]. I'll get around to adding it eventually. Randomran (talk) 18:15, 7 April 2009 (UTC)

history citations[edit]

As usual game history is hard to source. Here are a few links that might start you off. CapnZapp (talk) 16:01, 15 July 2016 (UTC)