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Old May 04, 2009, 08:00 AM   #1
Flying Pig
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Logistics in BTS

Logistics in BTS
Flying Pig
Logistics can be crudely defined as the art of keeping a military unit supplied in the field, but as far as Civilisation is concerned is the art of moving stuff to do useful things; so can be divided into resources and transport. Logistics is by no means an easy science, but luckily the constraints of virtual reality make it a lot easier to manage – but don’t underestimate it.

Resources


Resources come under broad categories; basic strategic resources, mined strategic resources, farmed resources, camp resources, building materials, fish resources, animals, precious metals, luxury crops and wonder resources. All of them are useful, but they should be treated differently as their uses and management is diverse and complex.

Strategic Resources encompasses a wide range of resources, and I think the best way to describe them is resources which you want for their own sake; Copper, Oil, Aluminium, Uranium, Coal, Iron and Horse. They are most often used to produce military units, but Coal, Uranium and Oil can be used for power in Factories. I have divided them for an important reason, as what can be mined can potentially be discovered, the XML reveals odds of 10000/1, so as far as we’re concerned (10000/the number of different resources which you want multiplied by the number of mines that you have without a resource) to one – so if you want Coal or Uranium to come out of one of your ten mines, then assuming that you have the relevant technology you can expect to wait 500 turns to get one assuming that you pull nothing else out of the ground.

Oil can be obtained in two ways and so is unclassifiable really, it can be mined in a Well (which can only be built atop a known deposit) or an Offshore Platform (again, you need to be able to see Oil to build it). I have lumped it here because of its use, but you should be aware of that. You get +1 production just for having it without a Well or Platform and +2 production with +1 commerce when you improve it. If you don’t have it, then get Standard Ethanol Corp. or invade for it – without it you have no chance of surviving the late game short of a miracle.

I will discuss the others in order: Copper (the earliest of these, available after Bronze Working) is needed for Axemen, Spearmen, the Maceman and their replacements, and gives a production bonus to the Internet, the Colossus, the Statue of Liberty and eastern Cathedrals (Taoist, Confucian and Buddhist). It provides +1 Production to the tile in which it is (or +3 when mined), and can be positioned anywhere on the map. It is one of the most valuable early game resources, but it obsoletes fast when you get Iron.

Horses are the second-earliest strategic resource there is; coming in with Animal Husbandry. They are a very durable resource, lasting from the Ancient until the Industrial Age in some form, but they cannot be used to make buildings. They are harvested by a Pasture, and are needed for Chariots, Horse Archers, Knights, Cuirassiers and Cavalry. If you have them, you will have a large advantage over the enemy, and they can only be built on Plains, Tundra or Grassland, so are sparser than metal. They do give yields bonuses; +1 production without a Pasture and +2 production and +1 commerce with one.

Iron comes later than Copper by one tech, and completely replaces it. It is as abundant as Copper, and gives production bonuses which when mined can be huge. It is needed for Swordsmen, Crossbowmen, Knights, Pikemen, Cannons, and many Naval units; from the Privateer to the Battleship. It halves the length of time that the Eiffel Tower takes to be built. It gives +1 production which, when mined, becomes +3.

Coal is the earliest resource which can be used to generate power; being revealed with Steam Power. It gives +1 production when unimproved and +3 when mined, and is needed along with Iron to make an Ironclad and also to build the valuable Railroad improvement, so is a must for the late game. Japan’s coal plants do not need this, so they can generate power straight away.

Aluminium is probably the latest resource in the game. It is revealed with Industrialism and is mined, for +1 production raw or +4 with a mine on the top. Although it is mine-able earlier than Uranium, it is needed for the Jet Fighter, Modern Armour and Stealth Bomber and halves the construction time of The Space Elevator, Apollo Program and SDI; meaning that it comes into its own at nearly the end of the game. In terms of use, mining it can turn a city into a great industrial powerhouse, especially with the Ironworks.

Uranium is possibly the most important modern resource that there is. It can generate power (with a Nuclear Plant, although that carries the risk of meltdown) and is needed to make nuclear weapons. You can also use it for warships, in place of Oil. It also gives good yields, so if you lack it make sure you go out and get some. It also has the potential to make you very rich indeed – when mined, you can pull +2 production and +3 commerce from it, although it is worthless without a mine on top of it.

Farmed resources are fairly simple; they appear on grassland and can be harvested by building a Farm on them. They give large food yields and the tile that you use to farm them is then a source of irrigation. They are very common; your first three cities are almost certain to have at least one: they are Wheat, Corn and Rice. Corn and Rice give +1 food, which rises to +2 food and +1 health when farmed, and Wheat gives an extra food point on the top when farmed.

Camp resources are animals, but not like the main animals category because instead of a Pasture they need a Camp, and are even more diverse. Deer are a food-based one, giving +1 food un-improved and +2 food along with +1 health when there is a Camp there; Fur is almost purely commercial giving +1 commerce raw and +3 commerce with +1 happiness when hunted properly; and the Elephant gives +1 production when roaming free and +1 production with +1 commerce and +1 happiness with a Camp, and is needed to build the mighty War Elephant (including the Khmer Ballista Elephant. Beaver and Deer are more often found in colder climes while Elephants live closer to the Equator, almost always in Jungle.

Building Materials are those rocks which you need to quarry out of the ground; Stone and Marble, which both give +1 production raw. They are useful for hurrying the construction of wonders and buildings, and provide large production yields. They are not especially common, but their yields mean that when you can you should snap them up. They have slightly different flavours; Stone lends itself towards production greatly, having +2 production when quarried and halving the production time of a large number of things: Judeo-Christian Cathedrals, Mount Rushmore, Oxford University, West Point, Angkor Wat, Chichen Itza, The Hanging Gardens, The Kremlin, Notre Dame, The Pyramids, The Spiral Minaret and Stonehenge; while Marble gives +1 production and +2 commerce when quarried and halving the production cost of Hindu and Islamic Cathedrals, The Hermitage, Heroic and National Epic, The Great Library, The Haig Sophia, The Oracle, The Parthenon, The Sistine Chapel, The Taj Mahal and Versailles.

Animals are like farmed resources in that they come early on, are common and give you food. The category encompasses Cow, Pig and Sheep. They are all give +1 food without a Pasture but with one are subtly different; the Cow gives you +1 food, +1 health and +2 production, the Pig gives +3 food and +1 health and Sheep give +2 food, +1 health and +1 commerce. There is, luckily, no event like Mad Cow disease or Swine Flu.

Fish resources are like farm resources with one important difference – they swim in the sea (and Whale, which is a luxury, comes under this heading) and so you need a Work Boat to go and improve them. Most of them (save the Whale) take Fishing Boats. The Work Boat dies when it makes an improvement, so make sure that you have plenty of them (unlike Workers, cities can expand while building them) to build up your fish stocks. Crab and Clam are the least of these, giving +1 food straight off and +2 food with +1 health when a Fishing Boat is built; while Fish give +3 food and +1 health when improved. They make island and coastal cities more viable; you can use the land for Workshops and other non-food improvements while you get food from the sea. Whale is like this to a lesser extent. giving +1 food raw and +1 production with +2 commerce and +1 happiness when harvested, however it can only be taken with Optics and obsoletes with Industrialism.

Precious metals are like Strategic Mined resources, except that they give a happiness boost instead of strategic value. This includes Gold, Gems and Silver, which are mined out of a hill and then count as a luxury. They are quite often found in clusters, far more often than other resources, and are well worth finding if only for the mountain of money that they bring. All provide +1 commerce when raw: Gems then give +1 production and +5 commerce along with +1 happiness, Gold adds to that an extra point of commerce and Silver loses one of those commerce points.

Now we come to the luxury crops, which are a diverse bunch. You get Incense often in the desert, while bananas can be found in the jungle and Wine almost anywhere: the only thing that they have in common is that you need a Plantation or a Winery to get them, which can only be built on a resource. Bananas are the ‘food’ crop, giving +1 food raw and +2 food with +2 health when improved while the others go up in commercial value: Sugar provides +1 food to which is added +1 food, +1 commerce and +1 happiness, Spices give +1 commerce and later +1 food,, +2 commerce and +1 happiness, Silk gives +1 commerce raw and +3 commerce and +1 happiness with a Plantation; Dye the same raw but +4 commerce instead of +3 when fully improved, and Incense is the best of these with +1 commerce when unimproved and +5 commerce with +1 happiness with the Plantation. Many of these are often found in the desert (except Silk, which comes about in the Jungle a lot) in bulk; so desert cities can use them to become trading capitals. Wine, the oddball one which takes a Winery instead of a Plantation, gives +1 commerce when raw and +1 food, +2 commerce and +1 happiness when a Winery is in place to manufacture it.

Wonder resources are three in number: Hit Singles, Hit Musicals and Hit Movies, and they come in the late game and as the name implies off Wonders; Hit Singles from Rock and Roll, Hit Movies from Hollywood and Hit Musicals from Broadway. They are all the same, giving +1 happiness, and are finite in number (on a huge map, you get 7 of each). They are best as trade in exchange for something useful; for example money or Oil.

Transport


Transport can be divided into the transport of men and resources. When you transport a resource from one city to another, you get the benefits in both cities – which is a great incentive to make links. Any route, whether by land or sea, will carry resources provided that every sea route has a city on each end of it – so you cannot use roads or forts connected to the water; you need a full-blown port linked by roads. Any route works just as well; so link up all of your cities to get the maximum benefits from your resources. Trade like this also adds commerce to the cities involved, especially when trading things of value like Incense.

Transporting men is more complex, but easier once done well. They can move anywhere on the land (but go faster along routes) can sail on ships over the sea and can fly through the air when an Airport is in their city. A Road needs no resources and can be built with The Wheel, and means that a tile takes ˝ movement points to enter. This does not count rivers until the research of Construction, and when you research Engineering they make the host tile need only 1/3 points to enter. Railroads do need Coal, but mean that units (except Gunships, which move 12 tiles) can move 10 tiles per turn. The difference between the two is huge; roads are mostly for linking up resources and cities as well as being good for getting soldiers and non-combatants to locations well in advance, say to stop a barbarian attack, while Railroads are better for getting men quickly en masse to a location and overwhelming the enemy.

Transport by sea is very complicated; troops can be transported by Galley, Caravel (in the case of non-combatants), Carrack, Galleon and Transport and need to be escorted nearly all the time. I wrote an article on the workings of sea transport, but the basic thing to remember is that the sea is very dangerous – if you can, go by land, and if not escort your transports well. If they are lost, the whole cargo is too; so it is far easier to take out a strong naval force with troops than it is to remove the troops on land.

Going by air is easy; you can go as far as you want from a city with an Airport, to any other city to which you have access rights or a friendly Fort. Missions like this cannot be intercepted but you can only do one per city per turn, so I tend to either use it to launch very small crack divisions or to move Great Artists to New World colonies to create a Great Work or add culture, giving me a start in that part of the world.
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Old May 27, 2009, 03:57 PM   #2
Jrrd Tzu
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So when I trade beaver for incense, does every city get the benefit of the incense? I know that's a newbie question, but, hey, I'm the new guy
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Old May 27, 2009, 04:01 PM   #3
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All cities get the or bonus from resources, but only a city with the resources in its cross can work the tile for food, commerce, or hammers.

So the incense would be a global +1 for your empire, more if you have the right building to make it +2.

Edit: assuming the city has a trade connection, that is.
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Old May 29, 2009, 08:37 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jrrd Tzu View Post
So when I trade beaver for incense, does every city get the benefit of the incense? I know that's a newbie question, but, hey, I'm the new guy
To expand on what TMIT posted. A traded resource is sent to the Capital, and moved out from there. Any city connected to your capital will gain the resource benefit.

Last edited by Ghpstage; May 29, 2009 at 08:43 AM.
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Old May 29, 2009, 09:21 AM   #5
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nice, thanks guys.
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Old May 31, 2009, 03:04 AM   #6
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Notes:

- An airport is required to lift a unit FROM a city, and allows 1/turn.

- A target city with an airport can receive UNLIMITED airlifted units.

- But I prefer naval logistics so much I don't do it anyway! Less micro!
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