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Pharaoh: Game Help
Moderated by VitruviusAIA, Gweilo

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Topic Subject: Entertainment - more than you may want to know
posted 04-19-00 14:08 ET (US)   
I spent some time recently trying to discover exactly how entertainment works. I think I have most of it worked out. This is going to be rather long so I'll put the details in the first reply.
posted 04-19-00 14:10 ET (US)     1 / 24  
Updated 21 September 2001 to correct consumption of goods by zoos.

Updated 19 August 2000 to include changes introduced by Cleopatra (the addition of zoos and the reduction of bonuses for citywide coverage) and to use the term "workday" for a sixteenth of a month as suggested in later posts in this thread.

A note about "days". A sixteenth of a month is a significant unit of time in Pharaoh, it is the shortest period in which the production of buildings or farms increases. Several people (including myself) have taken to calling this period a day. Conan mentioned that the Impressions programmers called this period a week, but 16 days to a month seemed more reasonable to me than 16 weeks, so I stuck with "day". What I had forgotten was that the length of a day is already defined in the game. When you right-click on an entertainment venue, the pop-up tells you how many "days" the current performances will last. It turns out there are 32 of these "entertainment days" in a month (although the number is only updated 16 times a month, so if you repeatedly right-click, you see the number decreasing in twos). At the suggestion of Jimhotep, I will use the term "workday" for a sixteenth of a month.

There are two types of entertainment venues. Performance venues (juggler booths, bandstands, pavilions) are supplied with performers from entertainment schools. The other type is the senet house which must be supplied with beer and (in Cleopatra) zoos which must be supplied with straw and game meat.

Functioning entertainment schools produce performers as long as they are connected by road (which may be roadblocked and may include staffed ferries) to a functioning venue with the appropriate kind of stage. If you right-click on the school, it says it can train up to 4 performers a month. Fully staffed juggler schools and conservatories do produce four performers a month (one every four workdays). Fully staffed dance schools produce eight performers in three months (one every six workdays). I did not test with partially staffed schools.

The performers start walking to a venue with an empty stage of the appropriate type (presumably either the closest or the one that has been without a performance for the longest, but I didn't check that). If there is no venue with an empty stage, the performer walks to one that still has a performance running (again, I assume it chooses the closest or the one that has been without a performance for the longest, but I didn't check).

There is a maximum distance that performers will walk to get to a venue. I only checked this for jugglers going to a bandstand, so I don't know if it is the same for all cases. If the venue is more than 213 squares from the school, the performer sets of walking towards the venue, but disappears after walking 213 squares (slightly less than 4 months walking).

A performance starts as soon as a performer reaches a venue and lasts for two months. If you right-click on the venue when the performance starts, it will say the current performance will last 64 "days". The number of these "entertainment days" remaining is reduced by two every workday (sixteenth of a month), but is reset to 64 whenever a new performer from a school arrives at the venue.

So under ideal conditions, each juggler school or conservatory can provide continuous performances at 8 venues and a dance school can provide continuous performances at five and one third venues. Ideal conditions mean that you don't have two of the same type of schools sending a performer to the same venue at the same time. As you will see below, you don't need to have continuous performances, you just need to have enough performers (from schools or venues) passing the right houses every six months or less.

Random walkers are produced by a performance venue as long as a performance is running. They are produced by a senet house and zoo as long as they are supplied with the required goods. The walkers wander for between 35 and 105 squares at which point they either disappear or become destination walkers and take the shortest route back to the venue and then disappear. The next random walker is produced after a recycle time of between 0 and 8 workdays.

The length of the walks and the recycle time is not random, but follows a pattern that I have not been able to decipher. As with other random walkers, the pattern seems to repeat every 4 trips. In most cases, the shorter walks are more common. In most cases the recycle time seems to be about 8 workdays for senet players and zookeepers, and either 1 or 4 workdays for performers.

It is possible that the random walks are longer in Cleopatra than in Pharaoh. The longest random walks by entertainers that I have seen in Pharaoh were 48 squares, but in Cleopatra I have seen jugglers walk 57 squares and zookeepers walk 105 squares.

While running this test, I noticed a couple of strange things. The first (which has been mentioned by others) is that when one of my pavilions produced random walkers, instead of them starting at the venue, they would teleport to a piece of road about 4 squares from the venue. The second is to do with where senet players enter the senet house. Normally you can tell where a random walker will enter and leave a building by going to the North corner of the building and going clockwise until you find part of the building with a road connection, and this is the entry/exit point. This works for senet players as far as the exit point is concerned, but in some (not all) arrangements where there is a road along the SW face of the building, the walkers will enter at the S corner (where you can see the people drinking beer).

Senet houses and zoos use goods every time a random walker is produced, and the amount of goods used depends on the difficulty level. On each trip, senet houses use 60 units of beer when difficulty is set to very hard, 40 at hard, 20 at normal, 10 at easy and 5 at very easy. Each trip by a zookeeper uses 60 units of straw and 60 units of game meat at very hard, 40 units of each at hard, and 20 units of each at normal, easy and very easy. The number of trips per year depends on city layout and the actions of the random walkers, but will probably average between 6 and 12. When estimating their consumption of goods, I use 9 trips a year as a rule of thumb.

City-wide entertainment coverage is reported by the Entertainment Overseer and is based on the number of stages of each type per head of population. No performers (or goods, in the case of senet houses and zoos) are required for this purpose. The level of coverage you have provides bonus entertainment points to all houses in your city. Entertainment points are one of the requirements for evolving your houses.

"Perfect" coverage requires one juggler stage (in a booth, bandstand or pavilion) per 400 people, one music stage (in a bandstand or pavilion) per 700 people, one dance stage per 1200 people, one senet house per 5000 people and one zoo per 7500 people. The level of city-wide coverage for a particular entertainment type (which I call the Coverage Index), appears to be calculated as follows:
[Coverage index] = [Number of stages] * [Stage coverage] / [Population]
where [Stage coverage] is the number of people served by on stage (e.g. 400 for a juggler stage).
The Coverage Index is rounded down to 2 decimal places and is never more than 1.00.
The way the Overseer describes your coverage for a particular entertainment type is shown in this table.

CoverageOverseer'sMaximum population per stage
0.80-0.89Very Good5008751,5006,2509,375
0.60-0.69Above Average6671,1672,0008,33312,500
0.30-0.39Below Average1,3332,3334,00016,66725,000
0.10-0.19Very Poor4,0007,00012,00050,00075,000

To calculate the number of bonus entertainment points in your city, add the Coverage Index for each type of entertainment and multiply by 5 if you are playing Pharaoh or by 4 if you have Cleopatra installed. Round down the result to a whole number and this is the number of entertainment points all your houses start with even before they are passed by an entertainer. To be accurate, you need to round to 2 decimal places the Coverage Index for each entertainment type (and cap it at 1.00) before adding them together.

For example, you have a population of 730 and one bandstand.
The Coverage Index for juggling is 1*400/730 = 0.5479 which rounds to 0.54.
The Coverage Index for music is 1*700/730 = 0.9589 which rounds to 0.95.
With Cleopatra installed, the number of bonus points is 4*(0.54+0.95) = 5.96 which rounds to 5.

Note that with Cleopatra installed, the number of bonus points from a given set of entertainment buildings is likely to be lower (because the Coverage Indexes are multiplied by 4 instead of 5), but the maximum bonus (provided all types of entertainment are allowed in the mission) remains at 20.

Entertainers give entertainment points to houses they pass. Jugglers give 10 points, musicians 20 points, dancers 30 points, senet players and zookeepers give 40 points. In the case of jugglers, musicians and dancers, points are given both by performers walking from school to venue and by random walkers generated by a venue. These points last for six months, or until another entertainer of the same type passes, in which case, the timer is reset to 6 months. The Overlay for each entertainment type is a visual display of the 6 month timer counting down. The "overall" entertainment overlay is a visual representation of the total entertainment points that the house has (including bonus points).

Entertainment points needed for housing evolution depends on difficulty level the as shown in the following table:

Entertainment points required
for housing evolution
House type Difficulty level
Very Hard Hard Normal Easy Very Easy
Crude Hut
Sturdy Hut
Meager Shanty
Common Shanty
Rough Cottage
Ordinary Cottage 10 10 10 10 10
Modest Homestead 20 15 13 13 12
Spacious Homestead 25 20 16 15 14
Modest Apartment 30 25 20 18 16
Spacious Apartment 35 30 25 22 18
Common Residence 40 35 30 25 20
Spacious Residence 45 40 35 30 25
Elegant Residence 50 45 40 35 30
Fancy Residence 55 50 45 40 35
Common Manor 60 55 50 45 40
Spacious Manor 65 60 55 50 45
Elegant Manor 70 65 60 55 50
Stately Manor 80 75 70 60 55
Modest Estate 90 85 80 72 65
Palatial Estate 100 95 90 83 75

As I've been rather longwinded, here's a summary of the rules as I understand them.

  • Juggler schools and conservatories produce one performer every 4 workdays.

  • Dance schools produce one performer every 6 workdays.

  • Performers (jugglers at least) will walk up to 213 squares to a venue.

  • A performance lasts two months (described by the game as 64 days).

  • If a new performer arrives during a performance, the timer is reset to 2 months.

  • Random walkers walk for between 35 and 105 squares (perhaps no more than 48 unless Cleopatra is installed).

  • Random walkers sometimes disappear at the end of the walk and sometimes return to the venue

  • Recycle time for random walkers is 0 to 8 workdays.

  • Approximate average monthly senet house consumption (assumes 9 walkers per year) is
    45 units of beer at Very Hard
    30 units of beer at Hard
    15 units of beer at Normal
    8 units of beer at Easy
    4 inits of beer at Very Easy

  • Approximate average monthly zoo consumption (assumes 9 walkers per year) is
    45 units each of straw and game meat at Very Hard
    30 units each of straw and game meat at Hard
    15 units each of straw and game meat at Normal, Easy and Very Easy

  • City-wide coverage for each entertainment type is determined by the Coverage Index which is
    [Coverage Index] = [Number of stages] * [Stage coverage] / [Population]
    where [Stage coverage] is
    400 for juggler stages
    700 for music stages
    1200 for dance stages
    5000 for senet houses
    7500 for zoos
    Each Coverage Index is rounded down to 2 decimal places
    Maximum Coverage Index is 1.00

  • Bonus points for city-wide coverage is determined by adding the Coverage Index for each type of entertainment, multiplying by 5 (in Pharaoh) or 4 (in Cleopatra) and rounding down to a whole number.

  • Points from performers passing houses are
    10 for jugglers
    20 for musicians
    30 for dancers
    40 for senet players and zookeepers

  • Points from performers passing houses last 6 months (reset each time a performer passes).

[This message has been edited by Nero Would (edited 03-06-2005 @ 07:59 AM).]

posted 04-19-00 15:54 ET (US)     2 / 24  
Thank you. The table with the required points per difficulty level is extremely nice.

posted 04-19-00 18:28 ET (US)     3 / 24  
Wow! Nero Would, great work!

I am surprised that bonus points are awarded for less than perfect entertainment numbers, I had always thought that you had to have 'perfect' to get any kind of effect. What caused you to begin researching entertainment to such a detailed level?

I am probably the person to blame about the 'day' nomenclature, its more understandable than my first name(ticks) but I didnt even think about the fact that entertainment reported venue times in 'days'. Hmm, sixteenths, bi-day, twoday, months, days,... no good name springs to mind for a 2-day period of time.

posted 04-19-00 18:47 ET (US)     4 / 24  
NW: Any objection to that appearing in the strategy section?

Angel Reckless Rodent
Caesar III Heaven & Pharaoh Heaven

posted 04-19-00 20:27 ET (US)     5 / 24  
Nero Would,
Very nice!

This may not apply to Pharaoh, but in C3, entertainers would go only a limited distance between schools and venues. I seem to recall something like 170 tiles for actors, gladiators, and lions, and much more (perhaps over 400) for chariots (which were faster).

posted 04-19-00 22:01 ET (US)     6 / 24  

A good name for the 1/16 of a month might be "work day."


posted 04-20-00 05:26 ET (US)     7 / 24  
I like it
And I like workday

I'll edit your post for you. Th eproblem is as follows, CR/LF are moved outside the table, so don't use line (paragraph) breaks inside table code

Eyrie, Pharaoh Heaven, Caesar 3 Heaven
Have you consulted the Pharaoh FAQs today?

Homage to thee, Osiris, Lord of Eternity, King of the Gods, whose names are manifold, whose forms are holy, thou being of hidden form in the temples, whose Ka is holy."
-- Book of the Dead (1240 BC)

posted 04-20-00 07:42 ET (US)     8 / 24  
I bow down before such perfect analysis! Excellent, Nero Would!

I can confirm that also other than perfect coverage has some influence - I have seen houses that lacked entertainment evolve when the coverage increased from Below average to Average or Good.

Workday is a good name... I'm hitting my head that I didn't check or ask about entertainment when the thread about production appeared; I was aware the venues report days, but somehow it didn't click into place.

Cherub Baltic

posted 04-20-00 08:46 ET (US)     9 / 24  
Nerdicus: I started looking at entertainment because I suspected that the amount of entertainment I usually aim for (perfect city-wide coverage and a school for each 2 or 3 stages) is overkill, and I wanted to check. What got me hooked was the city-wide coverage mechanism. I had assumed that it would be something like 1 juggler for 400 people is perfect, for 450 is excellent, for 500 is very good, etc. When I saw that instead or round numbers, I was getting things like 444 for excellent and 571 for good, I had to discover the formula behind it.

ARR: You're welcome to use this on the strat page, I'd be honoured.

Brugle: Thanks for the info on entertainer ranges in C3, I knew they existed but didn't realise they were that high. When I get a chance, I'll check to see if there is a maximum distance between school and venue (or if anyone else cares to try - go for it!).

Jimhotep/Baltic/Jayhawk: I was leaning towards using "week" for a sixteenth of a month (just trying to suck up to Impressions really), but "workday" sounds like a good compromise. Looks like we have a consensus emerging.

Jayhawk: Thanks for your "patch job".

posted 04-20-00 09:07 ET (US)     10 / 24  
Could call it a 'fortday' or an 'inning' (in honor of Abner 'Doubleday')
posted 04-20-00 09:23 ET (US)     11 / 24  

Thanx for the research...really well presented. I was really happy with the info on the bonus points, because I didn't really know how they worked.

In a few scenarios I build medium sized housing blocks that I don't provide any entertainment to...they are just there to house "workers." If the entertainment in my upper-class blocks is significant enough I've been able to cause the evolution of many of the slum houses as long as I make the area desirable enough (a few medium and large statues in the area usually does the trick).

But I never knew how to actually calculate what I needed to cause this spontaneous evolution. Thanks again.

Lawrence Tilly
New Hampshire AnlaShok
"We live for the code
We die for the code"

posted 04-20-00 16:46 ET (US)     12 / 24  
thanks, Nero Would

Even those of us that aren't ... hmm.. quite so analytical.. appreciate your efforts and research. Sometimes ya'll post these things and I read them and kinda glaze over... then later playing, I notice something.. and then I go dig out my copy and it starts to make more sense. I have used some of the production rate tables ya'll worked out earlier, and found them to be very helpful

And of course, it helps to have a definitive thread to point folks to when they do ask these questions..

thanks again,

Gustavia's Garden ~ Pharaoh Heaven

posted 04-21-00 09:01 ET (US)     13 / 24  
Oops. I just realised that I didn't calculate the average monthly beer consumption of senet houses correctly (sorry). The numbers are 42, 28, 14, 7 and 3 for the different difficulty levels (a little lower than I originally posted). I've edited the original post to correct the numbers.

These are only rough guides anyway as they are dependant on the actions of random walkers which are ..... random (or at least not predictable by me).

posted 04-21-00 10:19 ET (US)     14 / 24  
Just got back from a fish killing expedition and saw this. Great stuff! Answers a lot of questions. Thanks much.
posted 04-21-00 11:33 ET (US)     15 / 24  
Great post, Nero Would.

I've seen somewhere the claim that the points awarded for entertainment walker access tick down as time goes by between passes. Your observations seem to indicate something different, namely that entertainment points are awarded in a block (10/20/40 etc.) and aren't removed unless the column for that walker type completely expires. Is this something you've looked for? I think I've been significantly overproviding walker access.

posted 04-21-00 16:25 ET (US)     16 / 24  
JWorth: Yes, I did look at whether the entertainment points given to a house by a passing performer were reduced over time, and they are not. The house retains the full number of points (10 from a juggler, 20 from a musician, etc.) until the 6 month timer expires.

If you look at the overlays for a given type of entertainment, the columns you see on the houses are a graphical representation of the 6 month timer. If you look at the "overall" entertainment overlay, the columns you see represent the total entertainment points the house has (from walkers and the bonus from city-wide coverage), these columns remain at the same level until the timer expires and then they drop.

I also checked by setting up a case where a house has walker access to a given performer and will devolve if it looses a single entertainment point. I cut off access to the performer and the house didn't start saying "this house will soon devolve..." until the 6 month timer expired.

posted 04-22-00 01:40 ET (US)     17 / 24  
Excellent post Nero Would, extremely complete and something that always has been unclear to me.

I have also seen the "teleporting" of entertainers.

I often build roads that run along monuments or along a river just for cosmetic purposes. They are long stretches of road that have no services on them and are connected to housing blocks with a roadblock. There is no reason for anyone to be on those roads. Yet I can confirm with your observations that entertainers will "pop-up" on those roads from time to time at a pretty good frequency.

I've often wondered what was going on, and now it's clearer.

Again, great post and very much appreciated.


posted 04-24-00 13:54 ET (US)     18 / 24  
Brugle: Thanks again for the tip about performer range in C3. I ran a test with jugglers going from a school to a bandstand and found that although they would set off from the school no matter how far away the venue was, they disappear after 213 squares (3195 animation steps). Actually, they disappeared towards the end of the 213th square rather than the middle, so I suspect that the game is counting a nice round 3200 animation steps before making the juggler disappear. This seems to support the theory advanced by Jimhotep (in the thread "Those Wacky Walkers") that walker range is measured in steps.

I updated the original post (reply #1) to include information about the performer range, and also to add "population per stage" numbers to the Coverage Index table.

posted 04-24-00 14:11 ET (US)     19 / 24  
Nero Would,
You're welcome. About an hour ago I printed out your reply #1, to add to my Pharaoh reference materials.
posted 05-04-00 13:05 ET (US)     20 / 24  
Thanks Nero Would, this is the most concise and complete study of entertainment, almost more than a person can absorb. I can't even imagine the time spent researching and compiling this info.... incredible. Like Brugle, and I'm sure many more, I printed out this report to add to my already packed 3ring binders. Thanks again for this great work.


posted 08-19-00 16:42 ET (US)     21 / 24  
posted 08-23-00 20:08 ET (US)     22 / 24  
I'm new in this forum. So hi to you all.
I first played the Pharaoh demo a few months ago. And to be honest it took me ages to find out how the whole game worked. Now I have bought Cleo and found this site and forum just today. I allready downloaded the city layouts and was having trouble with the entertainment. Now i found this thread and I must say i'm impressed with the details that were build into this game. About this thread I can only say one thing. Woehoe, keep it up!!!
Best regards Tricky.


My Homepage 3DPortal
posted 08-24-00 09:37 ET (US)     23 / 24  
Hi Tricky. Glad you enjoyed it. If you are interested in reading similar threads, several of the best from a selection of forum members are referenced from the Links for Beginners thread.

edited to update link after forum move

[This message has been edited by Merepatra (edited 01-28-2003 @ 11:21 PM).]

posted 09-21-01 11:49 ET (US)     24 / 24  
This is just to let you know that I updated the main post to correct the consumption of goods by zoos.
Caesar IV Heaven » Forums » Pharaoh: Game Help » Entertainment - more than you may want to know
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