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Old Sep 10, 2011, 10:02 AM   #1
Rpger29
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Stealing AI settlers, CS Workers

I wanted to consult the board on something I've started to do based on the advice of more experienced players.

Do you guys feel like it is worth it to start an early "war" by stealing a neighbor AI's first settler? There seem to be long term implications, but it really seems to help control that neighbor for a little longer than you normally would. Also, I often seem to be able to press for a good war settlement by doing this and denying the first request for peace.

Along the same line, do you feel like it is now SOP to steal a CS worker?
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Old Sep 10, 2011, 11:12 AM   #2
Aoxomoxoa
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rpger29 View Post
I wanted to consult the board on something I've started to do based on the advice of more experienced players.

Do you guys feel like it is worth it to start an early "war" by stealing a neighbor AI's first settler? There seem to be long term implications, but it really seems to help control that neighbor for a little longer than you normally would. Also, I often seem to be able to press for a good war settlement by doing this and denying the first request for peace.

Along the same line, do you feel like it is now SOP to steal a CS worker?
Question No. 2 first: Yes

On the first question, it can be a little more involved as far as the decision due to the varying circumstances in any game, that being said... It's a very aggressive move that will likely set that AI civ so far back it probably won't ever recover.

You see the results when barbs take those units from the AI... the Civ that doesn't seem to expand and doesn't have improved tiles...
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Old Sep 10, 2011, 11:14 AM   #3
Noatz
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It might be worth it for a spammer AI Civ like Cath or Hiawatha because they're virtually guaranteed to settle up to your borders and then DoW you for being close to them, as long as you have other people to trade with.

As for CS workers, I don't know if you can call it standard when the CS in question may not build a worker for a little while, but its certainly the best play when they do.
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Old Sep 10, 2011, 11:17 AM   #4
Crow, of Earth
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I've stolen the settlers of AI on a few occasions, and they never recover. (king difficulty) I play without ruins, so I don't go for scout early on like most people recommend, but I've started building a second warrior early on just to be able to get that settler of whatever AI is near me.

The AI also goes into friendly mode most of the time, after making peace, they don't seem to hate you much.

Now I'm not sure if/how this works on higher difficulties, so I'm debating whether to keep doing this or not. (I've stopped building GL, Pyramids and HG because I have a feeling you can't get all 3 on higher difficulties, so now I skip one, usually myds)
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Old Sep 14, 2011, 01:53 AM   #5
qemist
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Stealing a CS worker is what everyone does when they can. What is much rarer is stealing a CS settler.
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Old Sep 14, 2011, 04:55 AM   #6
Gehennas
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Btw, can anyone say the approximate turn of creation the worker by CS?
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Old Sep 14, 2011, 07:29 AM   #7
Karpyan
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Does anyone know what the consequences of stealing a CS worker when the CS is 'under the protection of' another Civ? I assume some kind of diplo hit, but not sure how serious it is. Also, is this something that should generally be avoided?
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Old Sep 14, 2011, 07:36 AM   #8
Noatz
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Originally Posted by Gehennas View Post
Btw, can anyone say the approximate turn of creation the worker by CS?
This entirely depends on what kind of terrain the CS has nearby. If its hills and forests don't hold your breath for one. If they have lots of farmable land - and especially if they have wheat - it will probably build one right off the bat around turn 15 or so, and you're on for a worker steal.
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Old Sep 14, 2011, 08:23 AM   #9
MisterBoomBoom
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Taking another CIV's settler out early (and perhaps even grabbing one of their workers too boot) with a "sneak attack" and killing off a military unit is esential to controlling your domain at higher levels. Don't forget to pillage whenever possible too. And don't be so quick to declare peace! If you have France, Siam, Russia, or the US on your borders DO IT WITHOUT CONPUNCTION!
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Old Sep 14, 2011, 10:09 AM   #10
vexing
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Originally Posted by MisterBoomBoom View Post
Taking another CIV's settler out early (and perhaps even grabbing one of their workers too boot) with a "sneak attack" and killing off a military unit is esential to controlling your domain at higher levels.
essential is a bit of an overstatement. you never need to steal an AI's settler.
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Old Sep 14, 2011, 11:04 AM   #11
Rpger29
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Since this got bumped anyway, I guess I'll update on my success with this in recent games. I've had Japan or Russia as my immediate neighbor in all of my last 6 games. They both hard build a settler right after getting a worker. Stealing their settlers has really helped keep them from snugging up to my borders.

For some reason, the AI seems to like expanding toward the player even if they are passing up a far superior site.

The inevitable free gold from peace is awesome too.
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Old Sep 14, 2011, 02:30 PM   #12
The Pilgrim
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Originally Posted by vexing View Post
essential is a bit of an overstatement. you never need to steal an AI's settler.
I have to agree. It's more preferable to do on lower levels. On higher levels it will not have a serious impact on AI's expansion speed and can cause an endless and pointless war.
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Old Sep 14, 2011, 10:27 PM   #13
Tabarnak
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If i steal a settler to the AI i will want to DoW him later because he's already weakened. I rarely steal workers/settlers from AIs(excepted those already stolen in barb camps).
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Old Sep 15, 2011, 08:39 AM   #14
MisterBoomBoom
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I have to agree. It's more preferable to do on lower levels. On higher levels it will not have a serious impact on AI's expansion speed and can cause an endless and pointless war.
Can't disagree more. For setting up the easy win (and we all like those) at King/Emp/Immortal levels the stragedy of removing a border hugging spammer like Siam, France etc is essential if it is afforded to you. Taking out the settler(s), grabbing an unattended worker or two and hopefully removing a military unit is the first step to taking a pain in the @ss rival civ out of the game early on. Playing the "peace game" for profit and effectively removing them from being any sort of threat in your future is pretty much a real good early goal to acheive I think. At some point you kill them off completely... but in the meantime you have freed up one of your borders and have shaped the balance of power to your favor early in a high level game.
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Old Sep 15, 2011, 11:20 AM   #15
The Pilgrim
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Originally Posted by MisterBoomBoom View Post
Can't disagree more. For setting up the easy win (and we all like those) at King/Emp/Immortal levels the stragedy of removing a border hugging spammer like Siam, France etc is essential if it is afforded to you. Taking out the settler(s), grabbing an unattended worker or two and hopefully removing a military unit is the first step to taking a pain in the @ss rival civ out of the game early on. Playing the "peace game" for profit and effectively removing them from being any sort of threat in your future is pretty much a real good early goal to acheive I think. At some point you kill them off completely... but in the meantime you have freed up one of your borders and have shaped the balance of power to your favor early in a high level game.
Have you actually tried this on immortal? It sounds right theoretically, but not very practical from my personal experience.

King is okay. Emperor - you won't gain too much neither will lose much. On immortal, though, your chances to lose more than you gain are quite high and they're near absolute on Deity. Immortal/Deity AI has ~5 cities when you have 2. Whether it settles the 6th or not makes no real difference to you. Taking out single worker and/or warrior is basically a joke and AI's military strength is overwhelming at that point. It might refuse to sign a peace treaty for many many turns. Not only you lose trading partner it can actually send units towards you at the most crucial stage of young empire development. For setting up an easy win, as you call it, early on you need to concentrate on building infrastructure, less archers. Forget all of this if you play Babylon .

Why would one settler bother you anyway? Don't be greedy. Let AI build a nice fat puppet for you.
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Old Sep 15, 2011, 11:34 AM   #16
fmlizard2
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The problem with starting a war early on Immortal / Deity is not that you can't survive it, but that you are essentially creating perma-war for at least half the game. The AI will keep coming to you asking for everything you have in exchange for peace, in perpetuity. Because you almost always will have fewer troops for at least the first half of a game at these levels, the AI considers itself thrashing you, even if they haven't so much as scratched one of your units for the last 1000 years.
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Old Sep 15, 2011, 04:52 PM   #17
CMKMStephens
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I think at Immortal (where I've just moved up to) it's far better to steal workers from the city states. By the time I had a couple of military units I got a DoW anyway and 4 warriors, 2 archers showed up. In other words, you just have to sit back and wait for one of the AI's to decide they shall be your mortal enemy.

If you get a promoted unit from a ruin, maybe then take down their settler. The loss of their second city can be pretty significant, but only if you continue to harass them and not loose anything in the process.
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Old Sep 16, 2011, 08:58 AM   #18
MisterBoomBoom
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Originally Posted by CMKMStephens View Post
I think at Immortal (where I've just moved up to) it's far better to steal workers from the city states. By the time I had a couple of military units I got a DoW anyway and 4 warriors, 2 archers showed up. .
Exactly.

...again...IF the civ is one that will spam your borders and resources...declare war on you anyway and most importantly IF the opportunity presents itself I say go after the added workers...defeat military unit(s) (because the AI still can not wargame well at all) and castrate the civ early.

To answer the other question posed and in reference to the "problems" of creating an on going war ...I played a recent game as Germany on Immortal (Doughnut-Epic-Standard) and was at war most of the game with France (the target of my initial sneak attack) and it caused me no difficulty diplomatically (as they became a whipping boy for the other civs too #easytrendtoexploit) and only assisted me in getting units promo-up or play the "peace game" where I take his gold and redeclare war take workers/units...rinse and repeat.

Once you castrate a civ like this early in the game you have lessened your future burder of targeting his spammed out empire which requires more units and resources to take and more importantly allows to you to direct your attention and preparation to your next self-selected target civ and grab a few wonders as well while the others pick on your whipping boy civ!
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Old Sep 16, 2011, 09:09 AM   #19
MisterBoomBoom
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Originally Posted by The Pilgrim View Post
Have you actually tried this on immortal? It sounds right theoretically, but not very practical from my personal experience.

King is okay. Emperor - you won't gain too much neither will lose much. On immortal, though, your chances to lose more than you gain are quite high and they're near absolute on Deity. Immortal/Deity AI has ~5 cities when you have 2. Whether it settles the 6th or not makes no real difference to you. Taking out single worker and/or warrior is basically a joke and AI's military strength is overwhelming at that point. It might refuse to sign a peace treaty for many many turns. Not only you lose trading partner it can actually send units towards you at the most crucial stage of young empire development. For setting up an easy win, as you call it, early on you need to concentrate on building infrastructure, less archers. Forget all of this if you play Babylon .

Why would one settler bother you anyway? Don't be greedy. Let AI build a nice fat puppet for you.
...Had another successful use of this "Pearl Harbor" tactic as I call it with me as Korea on Immortal (Continents plus-standard-Epic-with a start in the classical period) vs. Siam on my Island. Took longer due to those damn elephants but in the end cleared the island quite nicely and only had to puppet two cities (I let the others burn)...otherwise left me the choice to settle where I chose.

Siam is one of those civs that you will only regret not dealing with early in this way I have found if unfortunate to have it spawn next to you.
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Old Sep 17, 2011, 09:28 AM   #20
Rpger29
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Yeah I should have been clear in my original post. I never play on anything higher than Emperor anymore. The rigidity of playing on immortal was just too much for me.

I've basically done this in all my prince/king/emperor games since the first post. It's extremely successful, and almost necessary for my play style.

If you get really lucky, after you make peace, one of the other AI's will take out the weakened enemy. Then they will also usually make war on you, and you can take the puppet capital. If you're even more lucky, it will have a wonder in it. So far I've gotten a Stonehenge and a ToA like this.

All this with only minor warmonger hate. I'm usually the least hated civ on the map despite the fact that I'm having the biggest impact on who makes war and when.
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