View Full Version : The Ottomans


Ision
Jun 03, 2004, 02:01 PM
The Ottomans - by scoutsout

The Industrious and Scientific Ottomans joined Civ III with Play the World, and at first glance appear to be "Persia with a Cavalry UU". Though the Ottomans have the same combination of traits as Persia, playing them well requires a slightly different approach. While strengths of the trait combination still apply, the difference in the timing of the Unique Units has a profound impact.

The strength of the industrious and scientific trait combination makes the Ottomans as a first-tier builder civ. Both traits are are generally strong in every phase of the game. Players should not feel constrained in their choice of victory conditions; the Ottomans can compete in a Space Race or vie for world domination. Cultural victories are also within reach any scientific civ. While cheap libraries can provide an early culture and research boost, the scientific civ's cheap universities lie at a technological crossroads for the Ottomans; and it is the Sipahi that brings the Ottomans to this crossroads.

Beyond the Middle Ages lie riflemen, the bane of the cavalry assault (though Sipahi are not truly outclassed until infantry arrive). In order to bring the Sipahi into the game quickly enough to be decisive, the Ottomans must not linger too long in the upper, peaceful, "builder" branches of the tech tree. Military Tradition must be researched as soon as possible. If the Sipahi are to be used for maximum benefit, the Ottomans simply cannot afford to pursue Navigation and Economics before Military Tradition. Those addicted to Magellan's and Smith's would be wise to choose another civ, or (better yet) break their addictions.

The Ottoman Sipahi (an 8-3-3 cavalry class UU that requires saltpeter & horses) is a unit to be respected, if not feared. No unit in the game packs more offensive punch until the late industrial era, and the Sipahi combines that punch with terrific speed. The human player would be wise to keep a watchful eye on any AI Ottoman border - especially in the late Middle Ages. The Military Tradition requirement for the Unique Unit underscores the factor that makes the Ottomans slightly harder to play well.

To play the Ottomans well requires a departure from research "formulas" that work well with other civs. While early archer rushes or warrior-to-sword gambits are certainly options, the Ottomans do their best warmongering later in the game. After getting Literature early, a beeline to Monarchy followed by a beeline to Military Tradition can seem awkward to those accustomed to pursuing Republic in the Ancient Age and Democracy in the Middle Ages.

As a warmonger tribe, the Ottomans are second-tier (though at the top of that second tier). Though the Sipahi are fearsome, they arrive on the scene a little late. This is compounded by the Sipahi's cost, at 100 shields (25% higher than Cavalry). To gain maximum benefit from this unit, Military Tradition will need to be researched as quickly as possible while still building enough cash reserves to upgrade some knights. Despite this second-tier warmonger rating, Cavalry campaigns are fast, furious, and fun. A well-executed campaign with Sipahi can rampage through AI cities at a breathtaking pace on a Pangea or continental landmass. When employed as part of a "combined arms" campaign, the Sipahi remain dangerous well into the industrial era, though this is perhaps more useful to the "balance of power" player than the pure warmonger.

Side notes: If Sipahi and the Industrious trait have a natural enemy, it is water. Archipelago maps (or continent maps with small landmasses) will be challenging to the Ottomans. The toning down of the industrious trait in C3C hurt all of the industrious civs, though this hurt the Ottomans less than others.

In Summary: Rank beginners (who are still learning the mechanics of the game) are the only players who might want to pass on the Ottomans. Regent-Monarch level players who are trying to break "builder" habits and gain some warmongering skill should definitely try a game or three as Osman. The Ottomans can do enough building to keep a builder comfortable, while forcing a "change in formula" in order to play to the strength of the Ottoman Sipahi. Stronger players should enjoy this civ; when played skillfully - watch out! 1st tier builder, 2nd tier warmonger, mediocre on water - overall a 2nd tier CIV.

Ision's tier ranking: A 1st tier builder CIV and a strong 1st tier warmonger CIV, along with UU that makes them a true mid-game menace - in spite of their mediocre performance on water maps, the Ottomans are an overall 1st tier CIV.

Below is the link to all the other CIV reviews:

this is the link to all of the civ reviews (http://forums.civfanatics.com/showthread.php?p=1891879#post1891879)

Ision
Jun 03, 2004, 02:02 PM
The above article was written SOLELY by ‘scoutsout’. All of the arguments, conclusions and strats are based on his experience with this CIV. Scout has graciously volunteered to take on the task of writing a few of the CIV reviews. I am very grateful for his participation, in that otherwise it would be highly unlikely that all of the reviews would ever be complete. This Civ review will be placed in the ‘sticky’ that contains all of the other reviews. My personal contribution is limited to the role of editor.

Sincerely,

Ision

PS: since I intend to create a graph listing all the CIVs according to overall tier rankings, I reserved the right to make the overall ‘last sentence’ tier ranking of any CIV review that will be included within my overall ‘sticky’. In other words, the very last sentence in the summary is mine.

Ision
Jun 03, 2004, 02:09 PM
Those of you who feel that his review is incorrect, sub-par, badly written, poorly structured or otherwise 'crappy' - please feel free to express yourselves!!!

Those of you who feel that overall his reviews (or some aspect of them) are superior to Isions - please keep that to yourself.

Sincerely, Ision

Dell19
Jun 03, 2004, 02:31 PM
Seems like its up to the same high standard. :goodjob:

fret
Jun 03, 2004, 02:52 PM
Thats an excellent write up!

I'm not sure about the 2nd tier warmonger bit though, even at the top. For sheer world blitzing power I think they are awesome, second to none even. The industrial trait indirectly helps with reducing the sting of the 100 sheilds cost of the Sipahi, and the golden age is then timed perfectly, and if played well...never ends, beacuse on the turn you lose your production bonus, you can have all your mined core railroaded.

If used properly the industrious trait can give you 25 swords and 25 horsemen in no time - and if used properly 25 swords and 25 horsemen can wipe out serious chuncks of AI's early in the game, on all but the very toughest difficulty levels.

This combination of 8 attack Cav based UU, industrious trait, and getting steam power as little as 1 turn after getting the UU, make the ottomans the choice civ for preparing for, and executing, a 50 turn huge map obliteration that no other civ is capable of with such speed and ferocity so quickly.

When played well I believe there is no world that cant be warmongered to death completey by the ottomans with 50 turns or so of them getting their UU, no matter how many civs they are up against, or whatever the map settings.

I think they are second to none warmonger civ, you just have to know how to combine all their strengths into a few little baby attacks leading to 1 uber-warmonger-explosion. But other than that, I agree with every word :)

Ision
Jun 03, 2004, 03:01 PM
This combination of 8 attack Cav based UU, industrious trait, and getting steam power as little as 1 turn after getting the UU, make the ottomans the choice civ for preparing for, and executing, a 50 turn huge map obliteration that no other civ is capable of with such speed and ferocity so quickly.

I think they are second to none warmonger civ, you just have to know how to combine all their strengths into a few little baby attacks leading to 1 uber-warmonger-explosion.

well said - :goodjob:

Ision

SLO Civer
Jun 03, 2004, 03:06 PM
As a long time lurker here, I have to thank Ision, Scoutsout and many others for vastly improving my game with their many articles on the forums. Scoutsout's review of the Ottomans has lived up to Ision's high standards.
Although not as adept as fret at using the Ottomans in wiping out my enemies, I'd have to agree that they are a joy to play as a warmonger. Nothing is more fun than a few armies of Sapahi rampaging through a continent of helpless AI to repay a few old debts, especially in GA.

yankees
Jun 03, 2004, 03:46 PM
hey scout great review!

just one thing why do you say in the early part that the ottos ar 2 tier war civ and then at the end say they are 1 tier war civ and 1 tier civ overall? anyhow thats not so important. the review was very good.

Y

Kaboth
Jun 03, 2004, 03:50 PM
Good review by scoutscout. Frets comments were so good they deserve to be added I think, provided he allows. If scoutscout is writing reviews and Ision that means more reviews faster, I'm definately not complaining :D. Any chance of that Hittite review seeing as their starring in the first Conquest GOTM?

yankees
Jun 03, 2004, 03:50 PM
... a beeline to Monarchy followed by a beeline to Military Tradition can seem awkward to those accustomed to pursuing Republic in the Ancient Age and Democracy in the Middle Ages.

that is very true. i had trouble with this civ at first until i learned to commit completly to peaceful or war. to play good with ottos it is one or the other.

Y

scoutsout
Jun 03, 2004, 03:56 PM
Thanks for the compliments!

I'm not sure about the 2nd tier warmonger bit though...@fret: If it makes you feel better, you and Ision agree that the Ottomans warmonger status ought to be top-tier. I will gladly concede that the Ottomans are no slouch at warmongering. I will not argue with anybody who considers them top tier warmongers, because I can't make that case iron-clad. Ision wanted me to put them in a tier, so I did. :D

Here are some things I considered when Ision forced me to make that call:

I considered them in the context of the civs that would make up my "top ten" for warmongering. When considering the Immortal, Legionnaire, the Mounted Warrior, you're looking at some serious ancient age punch. The dirt cheap Egyptian War Chariot and tough little Hittite 3-man Chariots are also a lot of fun. In the middle ages, I love the UUs that come with Chivalry (Rider, Ansar Warrior, Samurai, and the no-resource War Elephant.) Then you've got the civs that just beg for a warmonger strategy (Zulu, Germans, Mongols, Hittites...)

So, considering those factors (and I'll admit, a preference on my part to do much of my warmongering early) and I described them as second tier. But much of what you said is on point fret. When played well I believe there is no world that cant be warmongered to death completey by the ottomans with 50 turns or so of them getting their UU, no matter how many civs they are up against, or whatever the map settings.This is a good and well reasoned statement. I added a little emphasis to a phrase to reiterate a point - this is an excellent civ when played well. In my opinion, they're just a tiny bit harder to play well than say... Persia, or Iroquois.

@yankees: The part at the very end of the article where it says "strong 1st tier warmonger" is an error on my part. It should read "strong 2nd tier warmonger". In my opinion (and others disagree) I would put them at the top of the second tier for warmongering.

scoutsout
Jun 03, 2004, 03:57 PM
To everybody - I apologize for the double post, but I just noticed this was SLO Civer's first post...

@SLO Civer: Welcome to CFC! :thumbsup:

Ision
Jun 03, 2004, 04:05 PM
Scout,

It was NOT an error on your part - it was part of our agreement that the final summary tier ranking was up to me. The very last sentence was added by me. Obviously this will lead to some confusion in the future so another approach is in order. I apologize for my inept editing in this respect. I will edit the post for clarity.

Ision

scoutsout
Jun 03, 2004, 04:11 PM
It was NOT an error on your part ... The very last sentence was added by me. Whoops... I apologize for mis-speaking. Confusion aside, at least it wasn't a typo on either of our part! :crazyeye:

yankees
Jun 03, 2004, 04:20 PM
Those of you who feel that his review is incorrect, sub-par, badly written, poorly structured or otherwise 'crappy' - please feel free to express yourselves!!!

Those of you who feel that overall his reviews (or some aspect of them) are superior to Isions - please keep that to yourself.

:lol: :lol: :lol:

Y

yankees
Jun 03, 2004, 04:27 PM
i still do not agree that they are 2 tier for war. no way.

scout, you can run a a very good early archer rush with this civ. not the best for this but alot better than most of the civs. then you can go straight to monarch gov, so the MPs will allow you to make even more units instaed of building temples or cathedrel, so your army will be even bigger than most. and then come the sipahi! sipahi for alomost a whole age time before infantry! very much like china civ or persia. like persia more, only persia start better and then slow down. otto start a little slower and then speed up.

Y

scoutsout
Jun 03, 2004, 04:49 PM
i still do not agree that they are 2 tier for war. no way. Again - this is not a strongly held opinion on my part. Just like the #11 team in the rankings of your favorite sport could beat #10 on "any given Saturday", I think the Ottomans are just fine for warmongering. I had to make a call, and I made it. To those who love to warmonger with the Ottomans, your affections are not misplaced. ... persia start better and then slow down. otto start a little slower and then speed up.That is an excellent comparison of Persian and Ottomans, and an excellent summary of why Ottomans are not "Persia with a Cavalry UU".

bigchief
Jun 04, 2004, 09:32 AM
Nice write up, Scout. It will be great to be able to get all the civs done much quicker. Thanks to both of you.

PS: since I intend to create a graph listing all the CIVs according to overall tier rankings, I reserved the right to make the overall ‘last sentence’ tier ranking of any CIV review that will be included within my overall ‘sticky’. In other words, the very last sentence in the summary is mine.

I would like to make a suggestion: While the articles are helpful to veteran players, and they have made me rethink playing a couple of civs, I believe they are most useful to the newer players. Many of these players will start out with only vanilla, or vanilla and PTW, if they bought the gold edition. People have just added, or will be adding, the Conquests expansion. In my opinion, there are differences in the tier placement between the versions. For instance, this particular civ is not aplicable in Vanilla. I believe they are at the top, if not, they are certainly very near the top in PTW, but they slip a bit down the list in C3C, because of the partial nerfing of the industrious trait, the addition of the two new strong traits, and the addition of some of the new civs. This is the case for many of the different civs. If it would not be too much trouble, I believe it would be most valuable to do the tier rankings based on the version the the player will be playing.

Zardnaar
Jun 04, 2004, 05:21 PM
I would agree that the Ottomans are a 2nd tier warmoger civ (although very near the top of that pile). You have to take the timing of the UU into account as well. Often by the late middle ages you have all but won the game already or should be in a good postion to catch up. Also the boost Sipahi give compared to normal cavalry isn't that great compared to other UUs earlier in the game (Immortals, Mounted Warriors and Legionaires come to mind) compared to the equivilent units in the game.

Very good civ though and is definately not crap.

Ision
Jun 05, 2004, 11:33 AM
error post

kb2tvl
Jun 05, 2004, 02:17 PM
The strength of this civ is an early builder phase going militant in the early industrial age. Mobilization + Sipahi is a dangerous combo with indy trait.

For civ 3/ptw, Rep gov type is the best for this civ but, with the changes in c3c,an early industrial GA in Rep gov and changing to commy is the best approach for the Ottomans.

Longasc
Jun 06, 2004, 01:10 PM
Except the debate which tier of warmongering they fit in, this was a truly Ision-style article, scoutsout, really great.

Most players love Cavalry -> Most players love the Sipahi, Cav on Steroids.
Most people warmonger with the Ottomans, the question is just if it is really good to start warmongering in the Age of Cavalry and not before.

I would lead a war with Knights and later add Sipahi for further wars or to swing the tide in my favor.

According to popular belief, I would say: Rank them Top Tier for warmongering!
Even if their UU comes quite late... Cav is probably among OR the favorite units for warmongers.

fret
Jun 06, 2004, 04:36 PM
the question is just if it is really good to start warmongering in the Age of Cavalry and not before.


Having given the Ottomans warmonger thing a bit of thought, I'm inclined to agree, the thing to consider is when is the best time to start warmongering? Even considering that question though, I still rank the Ottomans number 1 overall.

The timing of warmongers, especially on the larger maps, is governedd by difficulty level. The major onslaught, steep curve, call it what you want. The time of the game when you have sufficient infrastructure and troop numbers to take the world with haste. This point in time has to be considered in the warmonger debate.

Taking a very basic view of this, with only persians and ottomans in the equation, you could roughly catogerize their status thus...

Chieftan-Monarch - Persians
Emp-above Ottomans

This is becuase the Otto's major advantage - good cav UU/high production GA/railroad just afterwards etc, is most effective at the higher levels, where it takes a while to play catch up and get yoursefl in a position to take the world.

At the easier difficulty levels the Persians have the advantage, because their sword based UU allows the player to rape the world sooner, something not possible at the harder levels, but made easier at the lower diffuclty levels.

IMO this timing all depends on which unit it is possible to clear the map with, the best one being the unit that can do it the soonest as is reasonably practicle. For a civs peak performance their UU should match this unit. Considering this, its not feasable to conquer the world at the higher difficulty's using a persian sword based UU (tiny and small maps excepted), yet its very advantageous to conquer the world using an otto cav based UU due to the timing.

Then you have to consider the effect the civs peak-timed UU has, sure you can rampage like hell incarnate at regent level with those Immortals, but troop movements are limited through inferior technology, their effect is dimished because of this. And at the later levels, espcially on the bigger maps, you will only kill a couple and make dents in a few of the AI with your Immortals, you wont conquer the world.

The Ottomans on the other hand, everything the warmonger wants is thrust into the game in a huge crescendo such that no other civ can come close.

At the top of the UU timing-effectiveness curve is the Ottomans -

-as soon as they get their UU they can get GA production (like any other civ, but perfectly timed because of......
-within 3 or 4 turns of this they can again increase production to almost threefold the original, by having all the core railroaded.
-they can then mobilize for war, and within 4 or 5 turns of getting the UU and entering the GA they can alomst quadruple sheild production over pre GA levels.

..and all this at exactly the same time as railroads are in place to take all the Sipahi created by this obscene level of production to the front line.

Its a formula that cant be beat by any other civ IMO.

Ision
Jun 06, 2004, 04:56 PM
Interesting observations fret

Personally I would rather play Persia at Deity than the Ottomans. Admittingly this is a matter of taste and style of course.

If I am going to be many-many techs behind and fighting wars for my very existence early - I would rather face those AI Knights, Pikes and Chivalry Tech UUs with the Immortal than with standard Swords and Archers. Furthermore, at deity I am far more inclined to welcome (and many times need!) an Ancient Age GA than at demi-god level. Assuming my typical game without too many adverse reverses early, by the late middle ages the tech gap has closed significantly and I am fully established as a legitmate threat to at least a respectable degree. Keep in mind that in essence the Immortal is a 30 shield Feudalism tech Med. Infantry that is available nearly an entire age before the actual 40 shield one.

I will grant you however, that if my start position was more of a 'corner type' (1 or 2 neighbors only - or had one of those wonderful choke points towards the enemy, allowing me to build behind that point : I would rather be the Ottos.

I cannot argue with you however - I know a few other deity level players that would take the Ottos over Persia. Just thought I would throw in my 2 cents.

Ision

Kaboth
Jun 06, 2004, 05:11 PM
Admittedly I've only played Emperor as my highest difficulty level but I frequently find myself fighting ancient age wars to gain more power and territory. I find it necessary ussually to keep up with huge empires like Inca and Sumeria. Admittedly I ussually play with max players on though.

So in this situation Immortal benefits me more than waiting for siphaphi to get any real power by which time the ai has probably rolled over me if I sit around just expanding and building.

Plus Immortals are a cheaper medievil infantry which proves better than my ussual MI/Treb combo throughout the middle ages.

narmox
Jun 07, 2004, 11:58 AM
I keep seeing references to the nerfed industrious trait.. What has changed with Ind anyway, in C3C?

Kaboth
Jun 07, 2004, 02:50 PM
I believe native workers only worked at 1.5 times regular speed and foreign workers work at 1/2 regular speed (for a non industrious civ). Plus there is no extra shield production in cities though I'm not sure there ever was.

denyd
Jun 07, 2004, 05:46 PM
I agree with Scoutsout as to the first tier builder as only the Maya can out grow/produce the Ottoman/Persian traits, but I have to disagree with the 2nd tier warmonger. I find that concentrating on the lower tech tier of the Middle Ages, providing a good shot at Leo's on the way to MT, makes the Ottoman an top tier warmonger. Building horsemen (I skip Chivalry) and being able to mass upgrade to Siphai, allow for an unstoppable force until Infantry is available in large numbers and considering the punch of a Siphai Army (10.4,3.9,4) this unit is valuable until Mech Infantry is on the board. I prefer being able to kick off my GA once I've gotten into Republic and with a lot of developed cities and the Siphai is perfectly timed to for that. As Fret pointed out, the timing of the Siphai can allow the player to essentially extend their GA until the Modern Era with rails and factories kicking in. The production and science boost of that GA can power the player right through Steam Power, Medicine and all the way to Radio with the TOE slingshot.

tigerden27
Jun 09, 2004, 12:49 PM
I like the warmonger strategy for Ottoman. The first time I played Ottoman I rushed to Millitary Tradition, after getting the Great Library. It almost felt like cheating. I don't think I even made it to the Industrial Age, before winning by Domination.

At one point I had 3 armies of Siphi, all by MGL. Two on my home continent, which I couldn't get off because I didn't have a ship large enough tranport them.

This games was the second in a series of 3 Regent games that convinced me I was ready for Monarch.

Masquerouge
Jun 10, 2004, 09:07 AM
The Ottomans - by scoutsout

Regent-Monarch level players who are trying to break "builder" habits and gain some warmongering skill should definitely try a game or three as Osman. The Ottomans can do enough building to keep a builder comfortable, while forcing a "change in formula" in order to play to the strength of the Ottoman Sipahi.

You're dead-on. I was a Vanilla Civ hardcore-builder until I bought C3C and tried the Ottomans... It's so easy to wage wars with these cavs on steroids ! They even made me change my habit of rushing to democracy ; now I beeline for military tradition, and then quietly finish the middle-age tech tree while
a. My UU triggers an early Middle-age golden age, my favorite for those awesome MA wonders
b. I wipe my neighbour's butt and grab those luxuries/strategic resources I still lack
c. I sell my techs for huge GPT to other civs ; hey, I'm a scientific civ, so I'm the leader !
d. I prepare myself for the tough time when my GA will end... by building FP and Adam's smith ! Great, I can keep that 80% on science !
e. I build workers to start on those railroads we will discover for free when entering industrial age.

Oh boy oh boy ! :king:

apopholeus813
Oct 12, 2004, 04:16 AM
I like playing with the Ottomans, this is way off the discussion, but Ii was just wondering where they came up with the idea for the unit. I mean it kicks ass with that guy with two revolvers. But I looked it up and in a few books i read it said that sipahi were turkish nobleman who could be called to fight, but one of the reasons they stopped being much use was that they refused to give up their bows for guns. Wouldn't a Jannisary have been a more realistic UU? I figured it had something to do with not wanting to make a defensive unit a more offensive unit.

Shortyman
Nov 10, 2004, 06:27 PM
I play as the Ottomans in Warlord and it seems to be the best civ I have played. I think that the Sipahi is the best special unit in the game. As soon as I get military tradition, I build Sipahi's in every city. After I have 20 or so, I send them all towards a weaker empire. Once I have taken over that empire, I either go for another one or stop attacking, depending on if they have Infantry. I then wait until i get modern armor to do another attack, but only if they don'y have Mech. Infantry. With my expansion, I usually have the more land than everybody, which relays into a better score.

ottogentleman
Jul 31, 2005, 04:30 AM
i played with ottomans many times,also playing current game with ottomans.estimated stat for sipahi against cavalry;

attacking cavalry against sipahi:3/7 sipahi wins.

attacking sipahi against cavalry:5,5/7 sipahi wins.

Himalia
Aug 01, 2005, 05:58 AM
Sipahi are indeed a very good troop. Ive never played as the Ottamons yet, im sure ill get round to it one day. Ive never been on the receiving end of a stacked up Sipahi attack but its simple to see how effective its going to be especilly that extra movement that really makes the bug difference.

ottogentleman
Aug 02, 2005, 05:36 AM
infantry needs resource and some weaker civs possibly won't have that thing and will train guerillas.guerillas can't prevent coming sipahi attacks..so you can play as warmonger most of middle and industrial ages.i think industrial age is best for GA timing.

tduk123
Oct 09, 2007, 02:48 PM
I find the Ottomans very easy to play with their cavalry UU it is very powerful against most medieval units and the ottomans can expand quickly because of that, the only problem i have is getting the research done




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