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Old Aug 16, 2011, 12:42 AM   #1
Pouakai
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Capital Civilization Guide: DLC Inca

The Incas
Pachacuti

Introduction
Pachacuti is the leader of The Incan Empire, who built a mighty empire across the unforbidding Andes mountain ranges. They receive a slinger Unique Unit, and the Terrace Farm - the very first unique tile improvement ever in the civilization franchise. Along with the Unique Ability - Great Andean Road, these combine to make the Incans a very powerful Civilization, as outlined below.

Key Concepts
  • Terrain Dependency - While the Inca are playable on all terrain types, for optimal results the Inca should be in a large hilly area. They come into their own on a highlands map, where hills are the main terrain feature.
  • REX - Rapid Early eXpansion. This is essentially expanding very early in the game in order to gain optimal city positions.
  • Tall Empire - Having only three-five cities, but each city is very large, i.e. size 15+ . < 6 Cities
  • Wide Empire - Having lots of smaller cities, often a by-product of ICS. 10 < 20+ Cities
  • ICS - Infinate City Sprawl. Having a grid-like pattern of cities the minimum distance from each other in an empire that sprawls across the continent. >20 cities.

Unique Ability : Great Andean Road
Units ignore terrain costs when moving onto any tile with a hill. No maintenance cost for improvements on hills; half cost elsewhere
This ability is very versatile, and can be used sucessfully for many different playstyles, if you know how.
  • The ability to move over hills while only taking one movement point is very beneficial to early game exploration, as most of your units can have two moves a turn, instead of one for other civilizations in the same terrain.
  • Not only does this affect empty hill tiles, it affects any hill tile. This includes hills with forests or jungles. It does not, however, affect the loss of movement for crossing a river, regardless of terrain type on either side.
  • By exploring the nearby terrain you will be able to see the best locations for cities to be founded. Again, even if a rival’s settler is closer to the city location than you, chances are you will get there first due to the terrain bonus of ignoring extra costs on hills.
  • By planning your roads right, you can establish large trade routes connecting many cities at no cost to you. At the expense of a short route, it is possible to create a trade route entirely on hill tiles, and thus cost nothing.
  • During wartime, Inca can benefit by having the advantage of a movement point over their enemies. While this may seem insignificant, it allows quick attack and retreats across hilly terrain, devastating the enemy number while you can retreat to a safe distance and heal before they catch up.
Spoiler:

Screenshot showing a trade network that requires no maintenance.



Unique Unit: Slinger
One of the first available ranged units, this Incan Unique Unit replaces the Archer. The Slinger is no more powerful than the Archer, and is even more fragile if subjected to a Melee attack. However it possesses a promotion which gives it a good chance to withdraw to the rear before an enemy melee attack can occur.

Cost: 40
Strength: 3
Ranged Strength: 6
Speed: 2
Promotions: Withdraw Before Melee
Replaces: Archer (At Archery)

The slinger is a mixed bag in terms of an effective unit. If used right, it can be the difference between victory and failure. It has less strength than a regular archer, and as such will almost certainly die if subjected to a melee attack. However, the Slinger has the promotion 'withdraw before melee' - this means that if an enemy melee unit attempts to attack, the slinger has a change to withdraw to a vacant tile behind it. Slingers does not do this always, and chances of a sucessful withdraw are decreased by occupied tiles behind the unit, enemy flanking melee units and melee units with more than two movement, such as horseback units. For maximum chance of sucessful withdraw, you must always make sure that there are multiple clear tiles behind a slinger. Train many, as they retain this promotion upon being upgraded. When the slingers are upgraded to Riflemen they are extremely formidable, being able to attack units and then draw them into traps, where the Incans will have a high flanking bonus and the enemy will subsequently be weakened by lack of formation. However, make sure that a civilian unit is never on the same tile, or else it will be captured.


Spoiler:

Two shots demonstrating the retreating ability of the Slinger.




Unique Improvement: Terrace Farm
The terrace farm is a unique improvement for the Inca. Like other Unique Improvements, it doesn’t replace anything. However it can only be built on hill tiles. It provides a base +1 Food, and an additional +1 for every adjacent mountain tile, up to a maximum of 6 (Officially the maximum is 7, however this would require extreme circumstances with a hill tile completely surrounded by mountain, and a worker being kicked out of friendly territory due to an expired open borders agreement, and so is virtually impossible). This is extremely useful, and adds a large bonus to an already good tile. It allows Incan cities to grow to be very large production powerhouses by late game.

While the Terrace Farm does not replace any tile improvements, there is no real advantage to having both the standard farm and the Terrace Farm if you have placed your cities to use the full extent of the Incan Unique Ability:


Terrace Farm:
  • Available at: Construction
  • Takes 6 turns to build
  • Can only be built on hills
  • Provides base yield of +1 food
  • Does not recieve bonuses from Fertilizer technology
  • Recieves +1 food from each adjacent mountain
  • Does not require a source of fresh water
  • Maximum food yield - 7

Farm:
  • Available at: Agraculture (Game start)
  • Takes 6 turns to build
  • Can be built on flat terrain
  • Provides base yield of +1 Food
  • Recieves technology bonus
  • Recieves +1 Food for fresh water access (Adjacent Lake / River)
  • Requires a source of fresh water to be built on a hill
  • Maximum food yield - 5


Spoiler:

Image showing yields of Terrace Farms on same tile type with different amounts of mountains nearby.



Incan Specific Strategies
When choosing a map type, any map with large expanses of land is good; from Highlands, which is the best map for Inca, right down to Small Continents. Other good map types include Fractal and Terra. If the map has options to change the World Age, 3 Billion Years will provide the most hills and mountain tiles, and so be best for Inca.

During the game, it is possible for The Inca to quickly become one of the most powerful empires in the game in a region few others could survive. As the region is usually filled with hills, The Inca can produce buildings and wonders to increase their power early on. One wonder that can greatly help with this is the Hanging Gardens.
The Hanging Gardens provide +10 food to the city in which they are constructed, and so are extremely beneficial to an empire such as the Incans, in a region where food is in short supply. Another good wonder is added with the 'Wonders of the Ancient World DLC', the Temple of Artemis. This is unlocked with Archery, which is directly on the path of Mathematics, which unlocks the aforementioned Hanging Gardens. The Temple of Artemis boosts food in all cities by 10% as well as speeds production of all ranged units by 15%. This allows not only increased training speed for slingers, it means a city can still grow when the base ammount of food is the same. For example:
10 Food - 10 eaten by Citizens
Net food: +1

In the above example, While the overall food of the city is 0, the effect of the Temple of Artemis has taken 10 % of the city's food income (In this case, 10% of 10, so 1) and boosted it to the city, allowing it to still grow. While combining the Hanging Gardens with the Temple of Artemis is a strategy valuable to any civilization, it is extemely prudent for the Inca, for whom any spare food is beneficial due to the lack of food in the areas which they benefit most. When Terrace Farms are included into the mix, Incan cities can grow to be very formidable, and rivaling India in terms of size.

It is a good idea to follow the Liberty tree when playing as Inca, in order to gain Collective Rule, giving a free settler. This fits in with the strategy of REX - You will want to build 4 / 5 cities as soon as possible in key locations, try to get at least one on the coast and, if possible, on each opposite coast. By building them in a linear pattern you will be able to have one trade route running the length of the empire, however as long as there are chains of hills between them this is not critical, due to the ability of free roads.

When placing cities, it is extremely important to keep the Unique Ability in mind. Aim for locations that have both a nearby mountain and several hills. This will allow construction of several Terrace Farms later on, boosting population in the city, and overall the productiveness and other yields due to more population being able to work more tiles and become specialists.

The free roads ability allows for what is known as a 'Road Spam'. This involves placing large road chains along hills from your empire outwards. It allows both military units to reach the front line of a war faster, and settlers to reach key locations within a matter of turns, further boosting their quick settling ability.

Later on in game, it is wise to turn towards Rationalism, unless you have adopted Piety and are aiming for a cultural victory. This is because, unlike you would with most other civilizations, you will most likely have settled in or around a mountain range. You can place more cities around mountains at this point, to construct Observatories, boosting science output by 50%. If you construct two other key Science buildings (University and Public School), the 3 caused by founding a new city will be equalised with the effect from the Humanism policy, which grants 1 for each of the aforementioned buildings, resulting in a massive boost to science for little or no unhappiness penalty. The unhappiness caused by extra citizens can be lowered even further by The Forbidden Palace wonder if you so desire.

Conclusion
The Incan empire, while situational, can easily become one of the most powerful empires in the game, if you play wisely. Having hills nearby is the best possible start, and a game with no hills nearby will be very challenging, but not impossible. The Terrace Farm unique improvement means your cities can grow extremely large in an area that usually seldom sees a city above size 3.


Patch version of this article: 1.0.1.383

Last edited by The_J; Nov 19, 2011 at 05:28 PM.
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Old Sep 28, 2011, 06:50 AM   #2
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Pouakai,

Thanks for the guide, an interesting read. However, with the food oriented UB, the Temple of Artemis and the Hanging Gardens on top, I would think you'd advocate a tall empire over a wide one.

On the other hand, the no cost hill-road and half cost otherwise would advocate a network of trade roads and thus many cities for cashing in big (and since you are in mountain range, Machu Picchu will synergize well with this).

Seems like this makes the Inca very versatile for either type of empire. Would you agree?
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Last edited by wannabewarlord; Oct 24, 2011 at 05:38 AM.
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Old Oct 23, 2011, 07:04 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wannabewarlord View Post
Pouakai,

Thanks for the guide, an interesting read. However, with the food oriented UB, the Temple of Artemis and the Hanging Gardens on top, I would think you'd advicate a tall empire over a wide one.
Its a unique improvement.
Just saying...
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Old Oct 24, 2011, 02:26 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by ShahJahanII View Post
Its a unique improvement.
Just saying...
Exactly how much value does this comment add to this thread? I think zero is an overstatement.

Why don't you rather discuss my comment about wide versus tall than trying to up your postcount by adding useless gibberish?
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Old Oct 24, 2011, 04:46 AM   #5
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Moderator Action: Chill guys, please...
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Old Oct 24, 2011, 02:14 PM   #6
ShahJahanII
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EDIT: How good is the game with the Inca's start bias?
I think I remember getting an Inca start with ONE mountain.
The pics seems waaay too ideal.

Last edited by Camikaze; Oct 24, 2011 at 06:04 PM. Reason: removed unhelpful comment
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Old Oct 24, 2011, 03:15 PM   #7
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My experience with the Incas is that they are not as hideously sensitive to their start region as the Iroquois, and with even a decent starting situation they can do well because on any given city location they won't *under-perform" the standard buildings the way a Longhouse does.

That said, this is probably the civ that I've quit early with the most (I play mostly on Continents/Continents Plus), because I tend to avoid the Iroquois in general.

Even if they get a nice region of hills but no mountains, the Inca are competitive because they can terrace-farm the unirrigated hills for 2F/2P; eventually the lack of bonus from civil service/fertilizer will damp their long-term growth but by then they've been highly productive for a while, and you can go middle-wide instead of purely tall. If they get a smattering of mountains with lots of hills they will just explode.

Last edited by weregamer; Oct 24, 2011 at 03:19 PM.
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Old Oct 29, 2011, 01:22 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wannabewarlord View Post
Pouakai,

Thanks for the guide, an interesting read. However, with the food oriented UB, the Temple of Artemis and the Hanging Gardens on top, I would think you'd advocate a tall empire over a wide one.

On the other hand, the no cost hill-road and half cost otherwise would advocate a network of trade roads and thus many cities for cashing in big (and since you are in mountain range, Machu Picchu will synergize well with this).

Seems like this makes the Inca very versatile for either type of empire. Would you agree?
Absolutely. I have had games where I control half the world as the Inca on a large map, and others when I have four cities, each above size 20. They are so incrediably versatile that they can play well with either strategy, similar to the victory conditions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ShahJahanII View Post
EDIT: How good is the game with the Inca's start bias?
I think I remember getting an Inca start with ONE mountain.
The pics seems waaay too ideal.
That was the first start I got when I was doing a play-through for this article, no re-rolls at all.

Quote:
Originally Posted by weregamer View Post
My experience with the Incas is that they are not as hideously sensitive to their start region as the Iroquois, and with even a decent starting situation they can do well because on any given city location they won't *under-perform" the standard buildings the way a Longhouse does.

That said, this is probably the civ that I've quit early with the most (I play mostly on Continents/Continents Plus), because I tend to avoid the Iroquois in general.

Even if they get a nice region of hills but no mountains, the Inca are competitive because they can terrace-farm the unirrigated hills for 2F/2P; eventually the lack of bonus from civil service/fertilizer will damp their long-term growth but by then they've been highly productive for a while, and you can go middle-wide instead of purely tall. If they get a smattering of mountains with lots of hills they will just explode.
I have had games where there were no mountains near the Inca and they still did well enough to stay as a threat consistently throughout the game, maybe buttoning off a bit towards the end.
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Old Oct 29, 2011, 01:31 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pouakai View Post
That was the first start I got when I was doing a play-through for this article, no re-rolls at all.
Wow, guess I got really unlucky then.
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Old Oct 30, 2011, 04:51 PM   #10
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Thanks for the guide!

I'm a big fan of the Inca's flexibility. They seem to synergize with my sloppier (or less micro-oriented) playstyle, where I don't want to spend time calculating trade route benefits/ city size/ benefits of having roads for ease of movement of troops, for example. And I don't have to worry so much, when the roads are cheaper.

I also find their hill movement bonus incredible useful in wartime and in early scouting; I remember one game where I sent my knights over hills to attack a city - had fun imagining the shock of the defender at seeing them suddenly appear.
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Old Oct 31, 2011, 04:19 PM   #11
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Incas and Aztecs (since the patch that gave them forest movement) are the two civs that can build a second warrior instead of a scout early, and still have a shot at their fair share of ruins. I know folks who play on the higher difficulty settings do this anyway because they have no real chance at most of the ruins anyway and need the extra combat power against barbarians, but on Prince where I usually play both choices have advantages.

(Of the two, Aztec warriors are even better, as their warriors get a nice promotion they can keep all game, but of course the Inca get the movement bonus for everything at all times.)


On a previous topic, in reflecting that I've restarted with the Inca more often than any other civ, I think another part of that is that I've *started* with them a lot. They are one of my favorite Civs overall.
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Old Nov 01, 2011, 04:11 PM   #12
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I admit that I've played the Inca exactly once and that was after I downloaded the DLC. I didn't get the best start (No hills) and I didn't understand how to maximize the Inca's strengths. After reading your excellent guide I'm going to give them another shot.

Thank you for your insights and for your work.
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Old Nov 08, 2011, 07:53 AM   #13
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I like the article but it seems to focus only on a tall approach.

A wide approach is also very viable for Inca, due to traderoutes and machu pichu. Even more important is the fact that so many city sites are good for them. Though they are best on hilly mountain region they don't underperform under normal conditions. Thus, more spots to settle.

And you completely skipped the warpart. How about retreating crossbowmen? Or riflemen? How about abusing the hill movement to your advantage? Why not mention the fact you should not build scouts on hilly regions since slingers will enjoy an almost simmiliar movement speed there?

Hope I don't sound negative, your strategy sounds good and is actually one I haven't tried yet with them, I sure will sometime soon. Just trying to give some constructive criticism.
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Old Nov 08, 2011, 10:22 AM   #14
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You make a good point. I have exams from now until the end of November, but after that I will edit the article.
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Old Nov 08, 2011, 11:12 AM   #15
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You make a good point. I have exams from now until the end of November, but after that I will edit the article.
Awesome, can't wait. Inca is perhaps my favourite civ and that is hugely due to their superb adaptability.
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Old Dec 31, 2011, 10:59 AM   #16
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I'm not sure if you find this tidbit of information redundant but cavalry and Inca's UA have great synergy, meaning the only terrain that could impede mounted units are forests and river crossings. This is especially useful w/ horsemen covering your flanks and uber in hit and run styles, less useful with knights because of their 3 vs 4 movement points. And in the late game amazing w/ tanks.
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Old Apr 27, 2012, 09:37 PM   #17
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I'm not sure if you find this tidbit of information redundant but cavalry and Inca's UA have great synergy...
It's not redundant, Pouakai's mentioned the benefit, but this article could use an expanded section on tactics. Cavalry normally shine on open ground (so they need Shock), and infantry benefit from the terrain defense bonus, multiplying the value of drill. I think the Inca's unique ability turns this on its head.
Cavalry with the drill promotion are incredible at hitting archers and siege - they tend to set up on hills for the visibility. With Incan mobility, horsemen can often escape after such an attack. Giving a majority of infantry the shock promotion provides an essential front line when attack cities on the plain.
I think the tactical use of Great Andean Road - to say nothing of the Withdraw ability - deserve a section in the guide
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Old May 06, 2012, 06:44 AM   #18
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How much of an impact does no tile improvement maintenance have?
I know how much it helps on roads, but does it really have a significant impact for tiles like farms and mines etc, etc?
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Old May 06, 2012, 09:37 AM   #19
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How much of an impact does no tile improvement maintenance have?
I know how much it helps on roads, but does it really have a significant impact for tiles like farms and mines etc, etc?
None, those are free. It affects roads and railroads only.

Still, it is a huge benefit.
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Old May 06, 2012, 03:23 PM   #20
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None, those are free. It affects roads and railroads only.

Still, it is a huge benefit.
I see. Also, the Inca seem to be very unpredictable diplomatically, has anyone else noticed that?
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