View Full Version : Purporse of Citizens?


ExtraCrispy
Feb 09, 2009, 06:37 AM
What use is the citizen specialist? Is just a placeholder for population that is not working? Is there a situation where using citizens is actually better than choosing another specialist or working the tiles?

Refar
Feb 09, 2009, 06:49 AM
The only times i end up running them, is if i happen to conquer a poulation rich city... Not having Slots to run something else, nor space to work the land, utill the boarders expand. Even then i prefer to whip away some superfluous folks rather than run citizens.
He makes 1 :hammers: and nothing else. See for your self, if you can find a worse tile to work...

Meiz
Feb 09, 2009, 06:54 AM
But with representation they become super citizens! ;). Someone should do a succession game with this theme!

ExtraCrispy
Feb 09, 2009, 07:02 AM
Na... Na na na! *sings batman theme song*

ShannonCT
Feb 09, 2009, 07:56 AM
If there is a circumstance where you need one more hammer to complete a build (like the Oracle) in one turn instead of two, and you don't have any more tiles with hammers, and you don't want to use the whip, then maybe using a citizen makes sense.

henrebotha
Feb 09, 2009, 08:03 AM
I actually often end up having to use Citizens to avoid growth (due to happiness) in some of my cities; though one could argue that this points to bad planning on my part (for not securing additional happiness in time). Like Meiz said, though, when you're running Representation, it's not that bad - and similar to how an additional :hammers: can finish an important building or unit in one turn instead of two, the additional :science: from running Representation-empowered Citizens in a couple of your cities can help you finish an important tech a turn earlier.

futurehermit
Feb 09, 2009, 08:10 AM
I've found myself using them more and more in newly-founded cities that do not have even a 1-hammer tile in the first ring and I need an important build sooner rather than later (e.g., monument, workboat). Marginal coastal cities seem to be the best example of this.

Wodan
Feb 09, 2009, 08:10 AM
I actually often end up having to use Citizens to avoid growth (due to happiness) in some of my cities
Why in the world would you want to avoid growth by working a citizen?

ShannonCT
Feb 09, 2009, 08:11 AM
I actually often end up having to use Citizens to avoid growth (due to happiness) in some of my cities; though one could argue that this points to bad planning on my part (for not securing additional happiness in time).

No it's not bad planning. In the early game, your ability to grow the city almost always outstrips your ability to keep every citizen happy. So you can either allow your cities to become unhappy and then whip them (minimum 2 citizens at a time) to complete units/improvements, or you can use some of your population for net-negative-food uses, like mines or scientists.

Joshua368
Feb 09, 2009, 08:17 AM
Running citizens to avoid growth sounds like a really poor idea. Crack the whip, build a worker/settler, rearrange your tiles, heck even just grow into unhappiness, sounds like a better deal. (unless you're running representation I guess)

The only time I can think where they may be useful are for one-tile islands with a few seafood resources and absolutely no hammers and you want to get those dang maoi statues built sometime before the game is over, and you aren't in slavery for whatever reason.

z0wb13
Feb 09, 2009, 08:58 AM
don't ever use citizens. turn them into hammers (the whip) or troops (nationhood).

the bonus from representation, unless the city has very slow growth, is not enough beakers for the number of hammers you would earn. although, that comparison is like apple and oranges.

you need to improve more tiles, by building more workers, or build more buildings that allow specialists.

and the maoi statues are better suited to a city with some production, so that you can build a strong navy there later. maybe coupled with the heroic epic or west point.

henrebotha
Feb 09, 2009, 09:04 AM
Why in the world would you want to avoid growth by working a citizen?
If you're in a particular kind of situation where you can't or won't whip for whatever reason, and/or you need every extra hammer (or beaker, in case of Representation) you can get, and/or there simply isn't a combination of tiles you could work that would yield something while avoiding growth, then you would want to avoid growth by working a citizen.

mc-red
Feb 09, 2009, 09:08 AM
mercantilism

mirthadir
Feb 09, 2009, 09:26 AM
There are times when there literally is nothing better to do:
1. Building the NP in a tundra forest gives you many specs instantly and if you aren't in caste you have nothing better to do.
2. Sushi pushes your pop up before you have decent slots in filler cities. Normally these are cities where I'm trying hard to get into the number 1 or 2 pop position for UN purposes. For instance a one tile city (say in the gap between to BFCs on a diagonal) may have 8 :food: and 8 :hammers: from corps. Say I'm in rep due to SSE and eman for happiness/cottages. I will handily outgrow the spec slots I need until I get a courthouse, lib, temple, and a forge.
3. You can't run whip and need hammers ASAP. This is very rare, but if you are locked in eman or serfdom (only ever for diplomatic reasons) and you need get a border pop or shave a turn off a wonder.
4. Food balancing. Particularly if I've skimped on pottery (i.e. block settle with oracle shot to CoL) I sometimes find myself with 1 more :food: than I need for stagnation and optimal output from mines. Rather than go unhappy and promptly lose the new citizen I will toggle a 2 :food: tile to a citizen to start eating down the surplus. Either I'm waiting for a new happy resource to come online before growing or I'm waiting until I can whip the unhappy guy away in a 3 pr 4 pop whip for something big.

Really though, citizens are specs of desperation; running virtually anything else is superior. If you have many of them, you should be considering caste.

Refar
Feb 09, 2009, 09:28 AM
I've found myself using them more and more in newly-founded cities that do not have even a 1-hammer tile in the first ring and I need an important build sooner rather than later (e.g., monument, workboat). Marginal coastal cities seem to be the best example of this.I was concidering this on occasion... But most of the time a whip seem to make more sense. Unless for some reason you really can't whip...

mercantilism
radiocative monkeys
:confused:

carl corey
Feb 09, 2009, 09:30 AM
mercantilism

And by "mercantilism" you mean "caste system"?

henrebotha
Feb 09, 2009, 09:37 AM
And by "mercantilism" you mean "caste system"?
Mercantilism gives you a free specialist in every city, and if you're not in Caste, some of your cities may be forced to use Citizens.

mirthadir
Feb 09, 2009, 09:45 AM
Ahh yes mercantilism and SoL also often net you citizens in new cities. Though normally when I gun for those I'm running caste.

carl corey
Feb 09, 2009, 09:48 AM
Ah, ok. If I'm ever in Mercantilism I'm usually in Caste System at the same time, so there's place for an extra specialist. Even in a cottage economy, by the time you have reached Banking you most probably won't use the whip, so a change to Caste System is in order. And if I'm in Slavery I assume this is a recently conquered city, in which case I'll whip a courthouse or a theatre. At most that Citizen will be there one turn.

And since I got the talk to Caste System, sometimes it does pay to move specialists/tiles to citizens, when doing so shaves off even a turn of a highly contested wonder. Being in CS instead of Slavery doesn't let you whip the remainder of the wonder, and it's unlikely you'll be in US to buy it. In this kind of situation I move citizens from any non-hammer tiles/specialists, even if it means losing a population point, as the wonder's more important than any benefits given by one more pop/better specialists.

mc-red
Feb 09, 2009, 10:53 AM
I guess I stay with the whip too long sometimes.
In reality it is a situation that doesn't last long unless I am founding cities on islands in which case the citizen from merc is useful for the first build of such a city.

carl corey
Feb 09, 2009, 11:22 AM
From the articles I've read here whipping is rarely efficient after size 10. Most commonly it's the cottage cities that lack production that I'm inclined to whip even when above size 10, but I found out that slow building is better in most cases. The big exception being Universities in order to start on Oxford, of course.

And yeah, island cities sometimes benefit from citizens if you're not in slavery, otherwise it's better to build a/several boat/s from somewhere else and just whip away the buildings.

Wodan
Feb 09, 2009, 11:23 AM
If you're in a particular kind of situation where you can't or won't whip for whatever reason, and/or you need every extra hammer (or beaker, in case of Representation) you can get
In those cases you're working a citizen to get 1:hammers: or 1:hammers:3:science:. Which is entirely different than working the citizen to avoid growth.

and/or there simply isn't a combination of tiles you could work that would yield something while avoiding growth
What? You mean if you are working all tiles and have no other specialist slots? Then you have literally no other option but to work a citizen. Which, again, is not working the citizen to avoid growth.

Joshua368
Feb 09, 2009, 11:56 AM
What? You mean if you are working all tiles and have no other specialist slots? Then you have literally no other option but to work a citizen. Which, again, is not working the citizen to avoid growth.

Well he could have a city completely surrounded with nothing but corn and fish in every tile. :p

Antilogic
Feb 09, 2009, 12:32 PM
With a city like that, he could afford it. Generally, I only get them with the free specialists listed above (Mercantilism and Statue of Liberty).

ppciv4
Feb 12, 2009, 08:27 PM
I think firaxis just use this to aviod some possible bugs.

btgwynn
Feb 12, 2009, 10:01 PM
In those cases you're working a citizen to get 1:hammers: or 1:hammers:3:science:. Which is entirely different than working the citizen to avoid growth.


What? You mean if you are working all tiles and have no other specialist slots? Then you have literally no other option but to work a citizen. Which, again, is not working the citizen to avoid growth.

Seems like you've got a mental block about what he was trying to say. Citizens eat food and don't harvest any, so they can be used to consume the excess food produced to stop growth to avoid growing into unhappiness, since the unhappy citizen will also eat food and produce nothing. Better to have a nearly worthless specialist producing something rather than a totally worthless unhappy citizen.

NonPrayinMantis
Feb 12, 2009, 10:19 PM
I was concidering this on occasion... But most of the time a whip seem to make more sense. Unless for some reason you really can't whip...

When building Maori Statues in a island city you can't use the whip effectively because of the poor citizen-hammer ratio of building wonders. Might as well squeeze out another hammer to put into the Statues.

NPM

NonPrayinMantis
Feb 12, 2009, 10:23 PM
Another situation for using citizen specialists is for a quick border pop of a new city when you have the Sistene Chapel wonder.

NPM

Antilogic
Feb 13, 2009, 01:27 AM
I guess if you aren't running Caste System, this is a viable option.

Tephros
Feb 13, 2009, 03:17 AM
I end up having a citizen when I have the statue of liberty, everybody is running emancipation, and I just captured/built a city with no buildings so it cannot use other specialists. Definitely worthwhile to try to get a specialist-enabling building up ASAP, but probably not with universal suffrage, and at that point slavery isn't much of an option.

UncleJJ
Feb 13, 2009, 04:24 AM
They are useful for setting up the basic infrastructure in a little ice city with no other hammers. Grow the city to size 2 and then work a citizen until you have 30 hammers and then whip a granary or lighthouse with a 1 pop whip. In some situations that can be more efficient than to continue growing with only one hammer, as without a granary or lighthouse food is wasted.

Wodan
Feb 13, 2009, 05:55 AM
Seems like you've got a mental block about what he was trying to say. Citizens eat food and don't harvest any, so they can be used to consume the excess food produced to stop growth to avoid growing into unhappiness, since the unhappy citizen will also eat food and produce nothing. Better to have a nearly worthless specialist producing something rather than a totally worthless unhappy citizen.

I understand fully. I think it's you and others who are having a mental block... or perhaps I'm not explaining clearly enough. I'll try again using a different approach... maybe this will help get it across:

The scenario you describe is impossible. We are not taking a "unhappy citizen" and changing him to a "nearly worthless specialist" (citizen) because that unhappy citizen does not exist yet. Before that unhappy citizen exists, we are taking a different guy off of a high food tile, such as fish or wheat, and changing THAT guy to something.

The suggestion to change him to a citizen (1:hammers:), frankly, seems quite sub-optimal to me (unless running representation).

Here are some other options:
1) change him to a forest, on a hill if possible (2:food:1:hammers: or 1:food:2:hammers: or 1:food:3:hammers:)
2) keep him working the fish and change 2 or 3 other guys; e.g., change 2 grass forests (2:food:1:hammers:) to plains forests or hills forests (1:food:2:hammers: or 1:food:3:hammers:). Or change grass cottages to plains cottages (which builds your future infrastructure for when you get more happy and can grow your city to work all your cottages at the same time)
3) change him to a mine or workshop (1:food:2:hammers: or 1:food:3:hammers: or 4:hammers:)
4) change him to a real specialist (e.g., 2:hammers:3:gp: or 3:science:3:gp: or 3:gold:3:gp:)

With all those other options, why in the world would we change him to a citizen (1:hammers:)?

(Yes, it does happen that, extremely rarely, we have literally no other choice. e.g., as UncleJJ says in an ice city with literally no other tiles, or as Tephros says with the SoL. The OP advocated intentially running a citizen to avoid growth, which is what I am responding to. Given another option, it's certainly better than running a citizen.)

Antilogic
Feb 13, 2009, 08:45 AM
Here's a whacky idea for why the citizen exists: the game designers wanted to have certain buildings enable certain kinds of specialists. Then, they decided that a default option should exist because the old option in Civ3 of just running any number of specialists above size 5 was removed. Thus, the citizen was born.

It's a pretty logical argument, I think.

EDIT: To actually respond to the recent discussion, I agree with Wodan. I never used to build workshops until I realized how badly I needed production and to halt the growth into unhappiness in my high-commerce/high-food cities. Well, that and the new bonuses with Caste System.

Wodan
Feb 13, 2009, 09:13 AM
Another thought, to respond to the Slavery proponents... this "avoid unhappiness" trick is essential to having Celebrations ("We love the King day"). That's true whether you run a citizen vs a workshop, plains forest, or whatever.

CHEESE!
Feb 13, 2009, 09:55 AM
Often when I REX too much and build the Mids I run Citizens till I get CoL for scientistististististists.

Wodan
Feb 13, 2009, 10:02 AM
I find I can't REX and build the Pyramids at the same time, unless I'm IND and/or stone.

CHEESE!
Feb 13, 2009, 10:09 AM
I find I can't REX and build the Pyramids at the same time, unless I'm IND and/or stone.

I often am. Explains why I'm a Prince...

Wodan
Feb 13, 2009, 10:16 AM
I don't like playing the same leaders or the same strategies all the time. I find that boring.

CHEESE!
Feb 13, 2009, 10:54 AM
I don't like playing the same leaders or the same strategies all the time. I find that boring.

Same actually. (but I just don't even try for culture. Simply kills me.) However, when I am planning to REX than I usually choose Ramsess or another IND to help me with Sci. Really what I am trying to say is I only have 1 strategy when i REX.

TheMeInTeam
Feb 13, 2009, 11:04 AM
I don't like playing the same leaders or the same strategies all the time. I find that boring.

I feel the same, but not everyone shares that preference.

As for citizens, there are times, albeit rare, that they are a good bet and mirth and others already showed when. I think they are also just used as placeholders - exactly what would the pop do if you took it off a tile in the early game anyway? The citizens give a nice graphical display of where you can re-allocate your people, and of course serve as place holders if you capture a large city with limited tiles to work (due to culture) and aren't in caste. Although they have rare actual uses, they see use in most games as graphical place holders. That doesn't necessarily mean one should use them for anything else though!

brianb1974
Feb 13, 2009, 11:33 AM
About the only time I ever use citizens is when I capture a big city under such intense cultural pressure that there are not enough tiles to work and not enough buildings to enable enough good specialists.

1 Hammer + 3 beakers (representation) + 2 culture (sistine chapel) is almost a respectable use of the 2 food the dude eats

That said, I usually whip them away because they'll usually starve otherwise. But in a really big city where you want to whip a factory or something, you get a better rate if you work it for a turn before laying down the whip. Even if an extra guy starves in the process, it may be worth it.

Also, sometimes my national park doesn't have enough infrastructure to use all its specialists. One of my usual strategies is to choke off an opponent at the beginning of the game so that he is unable to improve his tiles and he provides me with free workers. Eventually, my economy grows to the point where I actually get around to taking the city. Capital cities are, after all, usually great sites. Unless your opponent got the all forest start--out of 20 tiles in the BFC, 17-18 forests and 2-3 specials. If the specials aren't really great, the city isn't worth a damn until you can build lumber mills. So just let the opponent keep it and build you workers until shortly before replaceable parts. Then you take it, whip out the basics (forge, granary) and slog your way through building as much infrastructure as possible before biology. Then build national park (and your workers built preserves out of the mills after scientific method) and it's like whammo god city. But anyway, by that time you might not have enough buildings for all those specialists. So some of them might be citizens. I've had such a late-bloomer city go legendary before, powered largely by sistine-powered specialists. It helps to do this if you can BUY the infrastructure under universal sufferage.

btgwynn
Feb 13, 2009, 12:44 PM
Wodan, I understand your post and agree, provided any of those options are available. And, of course, if you're able to work a tile that has no food harvest associated that would also accomplish restriction of growth, and is obviously better than working a citizen specialist because of the higher hammer yield.

You misread my post, however. I never suggested

... taking a "unhappy citizen" and changing him to a "nearly worthless specialist" (citizen)

only that citizens could be used to consume excess food without harvesting food, thus preventing or slowing growth, which may be a viable course of action to avoid growing into unhappiness.

One example I can think of is a coastal city, just below it's happiness cap, and already working all it's land tiles and specialist slots, that would have either +2 food and one commerce by working another sea tile, or stagnant growth and one hammer by working a citizen. Now, granted either isn't a very good use of that population, and effort should be made to build more buildings to open more specialist slots, but in the mean time working the population as a citizen will prevent growth, and by preventing growth the additional population will not turn the city unhappy.

Wodan
Feb 13, 2009, 01:12 PM
Right. In such a case we're working the citizen to get the hammer.

If our reason for working the citizen is simply to prevent from going unhappy, frankly, IMO it would be better to work the coast tile because we will gain significant commerce.

There's little that's inherently bad with having an unhappy citizen in such a case. He'll just sit there and mind his own business.

NonPrayinMantis
Feb 13, 2009, 06:07 PM
The scenario you describe is impossible. We are not taking a "unhappy citizen" and changing him to a "nearly worthless specialist" (citizen) because that unhappy citizen does not exist yet. Before that unhappy citizen exists, we are taking a different guy off of a high food tile, such as fish or wheat, and changing THAT guy to something.

The suggestion to change him to a citizen (1:hammers:), frankly, seems quite sub-optimal to me (unless running representation).

Although the situation is not only rare but also sub-optimal, as you point out, it is not impossible to want to use a citizen specialist. Here's the situation where it occurs:

A: You want to halt growth for the city to avoid going over happy cap.
B: Slavery is not an option at this point because you are either building a wonder or you just started a regular building and do not want to (or can't) slave right yet.
C: You do not have any regular specialist producing buildings in the city
D: You have few :hammers:-bearing tiles around the city, certainly nothing over 1 :hammers:


Here are some other options:
1) change him to a forest, on a hill if possible (2:food:1:hammers: or 1:food:2:hammers: or 1:food:3:hammers:)

You don't have any tiles over 1:hammers: so only the grass/forest is your only option from the above. But since you want to halt growth, why would you use a tile with 2:food: in addtion to the :hammers:? A citizen is better.


2) keep him working the fish and change 2 or 3 other guys; e.g., change 2 grass forests (2:food:1:hammers:) to plains forests or hills forests (1:food:2:hammers: or 1:food:3:hammers:). Or change grass cottages to plains cottages (which builds your future infrastructure for when you get more happy and can grow your city to work all your cottages at the same time)

Certainly this is a better option but it may not be available because the only tiles available are plains or grass/forest or worse (jungle, tundra, etc.)


3) change him to a mine or workshop (1:food:2:hammers: or 1:food:3:hammers: or 4:hammers:)

Again, these tiles are not available.


4) change him to a real specialist.

With all those other options, why in the world would we change him to a citizen (1:hammers:)?

Again, these options are not available. Remember, you want to stop growth so food bearing tiles are out. A citizen specialist is like using a 1:hammers:-no food tile.

NPM

Joshua368
Feb 13, 2009, 06:23 PM
Build some workers so you have some decent tiles instead of being a crappy player with crappy cities.


If you have absolutely no hills or workshops or whatever and can't slave right away keep building until you can slave. Growing into unhappiness is okay if you plan on whipping them away afterwards. If it's a wonder you can whip cheaper buildings (perhaps ones that open specialists!) and let the overflow go into the wonder, though I sort of question how you could build a wonder with crappy production in the first place.

If you are not in slavery then its extremely early in the game and this whole thing isn't relevant or its afterwards and you have caste/serfdom/emancipation in which case its late enough for you to plop some workshops down.

Don't be terrified of growing past your happy cap. If your city happens to be unable to stall its growth completely and you can't build a worker or settler, its okay to let it (slowly) grow unhappy if you have no better options. The new citizen could then be starved for extra production if a new tile becomes available, (i.e. workshop) or whipped away once slavery is an option, and become useful if your happy cap goes up. Working a 2 :food: 1 :hammers: tile and growing a little unhappy is better than a raw 1 :hammers: citizen that halts growth. Not by much, mind you, but still better.



The only situation you could need them is where you have absolutely no hammer tiles at all (and no ability to make them) and you really just want some production. This pretty much only occurs in one-tile island cities.

Wodan
Feb 14, 2009, 06:14 AM
Although the situation is not only rare but also sub-optimal, as you point out, it is not impossible to want to use a citizen specialist.
::sigh:: I'll respond but please note that much of what you're saying was covered in previous posts. If you're going to join in the discussion (and you're very welcome to do so!), you might want to read the thread first. :)

I didn't say it was "impossible to want to use a citizen specialist". I said it was impossible to swap a yet-to-be-created pop for a citizen specialist.

What we're swapping is an EXISTING pop for a citizen specialist.

This is an important distinction because if we're comparing the two, we have to factor in the loss of income from whatever the EXISTING pop was doing.

Here's the situation where it occurs:
We've discussed those situations and more. No need to reiterate some of them. ;)

You don't have any tiles over 1:hammers:
If we're precluding other possibilities as a precondition to the discussion, I agree. If we're not, then we need to include other possibilities as a result of the discussion, which is what was done prior to your post.

But since you want to halt growth, why would you use a tile with 2:food: in addtion to the :hammers:? A citizen is better.
Because there is little harm from having an unhappy citizen. And, if you have the expectation of getting more happiness resources soon, either through research of Calendar, through trades, or through Hollywood etc, then having that guy there and ready to go would be a big benefit.

Skallagrimson
Feb 16, 2009, 09:40 AM
I have released all fear of unhappy citizens, so long as I'm in Slavery, and just waiting for the right time to whip. They're just slaves in the holding pen, and on the auction block.