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Old Jan 06, 2006, 05:40 AM   #1
Ereiid
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Economies in ruins!

Greets, all.

Wondering if you might help me with a little problem I've been encountering on a couple of my most recent games.

As soon as I get into the Classical Era, my budgeting makes a turn for the deep, deep red.

Lemme explain:

1) In one game, I was running Napeleon, and in the other, Qi Shi Huang. Both games were on Huge maps, set only to Warlord.

2) The early game ran just fine, until I ran up to about a dozen cities.

3) Entering the Classical era in both, in the 100 ADs, my economy started nosediving to the point where I was bleeding gold at 0% research. In both instances, I was set to Slavery and Organized Religion civics, with all the rest set to the default. My military wasn't of consequence, and was reporting 0 upkeep in the Economy view.

4) I can't for the life of me, figure out why the economies are crashing so hard, so reliably. Any thoughts? Bug? Am I just overdeveloping too fast?
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Old Jan 06, 2006, 05:46 AM   #2
jonoerator
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Are you building cottages?? Imho you really need to a built a lot of cottages for your economy to survive.

Furthermore, courthouses? are you building courthouses in your cities? Forbidden palace? Versailles (if you can) - all these buildings decrease the maintenance costs of your cities, and are essential if you want to have a decent economy in a large empire.

Furthermore, you might simply be expanding before your civilisation is ready to expand. In Civ4 it isnt as necessary to have a massive empire to stay ahead in tech, or stay ahead in score. A small empire, with less maintenance costs, can actually keep up or even surpass a larger one in tech, due to decreased city maintenance costs.

Hope that was of some assistance.
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Old Jan 06, 2006, 05:53 AM   #3
DrewBledsoe
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ereiid
Greets, all.

Wondering if you might help me with a little problem I've been encountering on a couple of my most recent games.

As soon as I get into the Classical Era, my budgeting makes a turn for the deep, deep red.

Lemme explain:

1) In one game, I was running Napeleon, and in the other, Qi Shi Huang. Both games were on Huge maps, set only to Warlord.

2) The early game ran just fine, until I ran up to about a dozen cities.

3) Entering the Classical era in both, in the 100 ADs, my economy started nosediving to the point where I was bleeding gold at 0% research. In both instances, I was set to Slavery and Organized Religion civics, with all the rest set to the default. My military wasn't of consequence, and was reporting 0 upkeep in the Economy view.

4) I can't for the life of me, figure out why the economies are crashing so hard, so reliably. Any thoughts? Bug? Am I just overdeveloping too fast?
In short yes you're overdeveloping too fast. BUT you can get away with it, cos I always eventually give into temptation and build far to many cities too.

If you want a lot of early cities , you absolutely and unquestionably HAVE to research Pottery very early , and build a lot of cottages very early on, and then you also have to make sure the cities use them, because left to its own devices the "city auto citizen management" would rather put someone in a forest a lot of the time.

You didn't say which time length game you were playing , but 12 cities by 100 AD IS quite a lot, but by having the cottage / hamlets / villages even towns by then will enable you to run science probably around 30 -40 %.

Code of Laws (to get Courthouses) will help a lot too, but getting this early with the "Big Nation" tactic is easier said than done.
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Old Jan 06, 2006, 06:18 AM   #4
Wodan
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Another good option is to not build so many cities. Throw a shell of cities out where you would have the borders of your empire anyway, but skip over the in-between spots (skip over the inner circle of cities). Some people cringe at that, but in Civ4 the distance penalty is a pittance compared to the # of cities penalty. Seriously.

Once you have your economy rocking & rolling, with cottages, marketplaces, and courthouses, THEN build 4-5 more settlers and start those other cities.

If there's an AI you're afraid will sneak into your "saved" spots, simply decline to have Open Borders until afterwards.

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Old Jan 06, 2006, 06:26 AM   #5
DrewBledsoe
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wodan
Another good option is to not build so many cities. Throw a shell of cities out where you would have the borders of your empire anyway, but skip over the in-between spots (skip over the inner circle of cities). Some people cringe at that, but in Civ4 the distance penalty is a pittance compared to the # of cities penalty. Seriously.

Once you have your economy rocking & rolling, with cottages, marketplaces, and courthouses, THEN build 4-5 more settlers and start those other cities.

If there's an AI you're afraid will sneak into your "saved" spots, simply decline to have Open Borders until afterwards.

Wodan
Try that too often on marathon / huge , and you'll have an inner circle of barbarian cities
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Old Jan 06, 2006, 06:29 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DrewBledsoe
Try that too often on marathon / huge , and you'll have an inner circle of barbarian cities
Use unites fortified on hills there to clear the fog of war and this will not happen
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Old Jan 06, 2006, 10:56 AM   #7
DraconisRex
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Well, over time I have discovered that over-development is not quite as bad as many make it out to be. What you have to do is learn how to manage your over-development. There are certain techs, and related improvements, that are very important. All these are helpful to one degree or another:

Polytheism & Monotheism. Shrines make money. Founding religions is very, very important if you want to land grab as you can generate extra income. And infect your neighbors, allowing better relations.

Pottery allows you to build cottages. You need to split your food production land between cottages and farms. Yes, it will slow down growth, but when you build the granary improvement in the city, you'll gain a lot of it back.

Alphabet allows you to idle cities and convert the production into research. You'll need to juggle this through your empire to maintain a reasonable research rate while you're stuck at a lower-than-100% research allocation and to build necessary improvements.

Code of Laws allows the Courthouse improvement. It is one of the most important city improvements and will cut the maintenece cost of each city in which it is built by 50%. Also allows the Caste System civic, which while more expensive, allows you to force merchants who generate additional gold and great merchants.

Currency allows the Market improvement. It also allows you to ide cities and convert some of the production to gold.

Civil Service allows the Bureaucracy civic which is usually cheaper than Vassalege, even with the unit difference. Plus, it doubles the commerce and production out-put of your capital. If you idle your capital under this civic, you can really get a good boost in gold production.

Certain Wonders help:

Pyramids allows you to select the Representation Civic. It is a "Low" cost civic and provides a research bonus. The Great Lighthouse and Colossus help with ocean-related gold production. The Parthenon to double your Great Person rate.

Stonehenge really helps to generate Great Prophets. These are used in conjunction with (first) founding the Holy Sites of religions. Later, you use them to discover techs and more religions!!! which then allows you to found more Holy Sites. I have, at times, discovered up-to 5 religions and have had a HUGE religion-based gold advantage over the AI.


By doing most of these things, I've won many a tech-race at Noble, or higher, despite frequently dropping down to the 50% or lower research level on a temporary basis.
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Old Jan 06, 2006, 04:06 PM   #8
Ereiid
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jonoerator
Are you building cottages?? Imho you really need to a built a lot of cottages for your economy to survive.
They're in my general improvement cycle, yes. Though I haven't quite taken to pseudomicromanaging my cities to ensure they're getting worked in all cases. I'll take a closer look at that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jonoerator
Furthermore, courthouses? are you building courthouses in your cities? Forbidden palace? Versailles (if you can) - all these buildings decrease the maintenance costs of your cities, and are essential if you want to have a decent economy in a large empire.
Oh, I'm talking about before Courthouses, FP and Versailles are even available.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jonoerator
Furthermore, you might simply be expanding before your civilisation is ready to expand. In Civ4 it isnt as necessary to have a massive empire to stay ahead in tech, or stay ahead in score. A small empire, with less maintenance costs, can actually keep up or even surpass a larger one in tech, due to decreased city maintenance costs.
Having read the manual afterword, I definitely see that. Though several of my previous games, prior to the 1.52 patch haven't been quite so impoverished - in spite of gunning for rather expansive territories from the outset.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jonoerator
Hope that was of some assistance.
Most definitely.

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Old Jan 06, 2006, 04:12 PM   #9
Ereiid
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DrewBledsoe
If you want a lot of early cities , you absolutely and unquestionably HAVE to research Pottery very early , and build a lot of cottages very early on, and then you also have to make sure the cities use them, because left to its own devices the "city auto citizen management" would rather put someone in a forest a lot of the time.
Pottery, cottages, gotcha.

Do you find the "auto management" option to emphasize commerce to be of help in helping ensure cottage usage?

Quote:
You didn't say which time length game you were playing , but 12 cities by 100 AD IS quite a lot, but by having the cottage / hamlets / villages even towns by then will enable you to run science probably around 30 -40 %.
The games I was having trouble with were Epic, which could explain why my settlement was outpacing my ability to usably improve and use the land for commerce. Now that you mention it, it did seem to be less of a problem on my Normal speed games -- I'll take a closer look at that.
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Old Jan 06, 2006, 04:21 PM   #10
Ereiid
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DraconisRex
Polytheism & Monotheism. Shrines make money. Founding religions is very, very important if you want to land grab as you can generate extra income. And infect your neighbors, allowing better relations.
Even on Chieftain, I find that Hinduism and Buddhism are a wash unless I have the good fortune of starting with Mysticism. Judaism seems to be pretty reliable to score.

As for Code of Laws, Currency and Civil Service, this rather specific setpoint in the economy seems to happen before those Techs become available -- which is among the reasons I'm finding it so bewildering to have my economy tank so long before I even have, say -- Markets or Courthouses available.

Pyramids allows you to select the Representation Civic. It is a "Low" cost civic and provides a research bonus. The Great Lighthouse and Colossus help with ocean-related gold production. The Parthenon to double your Great Person rate.

Quote:
Stonehenge really helps to generate Great Prophets. These are used in conjunction with (first) founding the Holy Sites of religions. Later, you use them to discover techs and more religions!!! which then allows you to found more Holy Sites. I have, at times, discovered up-to 5 religions and have had a HUGE religion-based gold advantage over the AI.
On one of my lower-setting (Chieftain) games, I had a similar 'xperience - it seems to be a question of getting a shot at Stonehenge, it's so competitive so early for it.

Quote:
By doing most of these things, I've won many a tech-race at Noble, or higher, despite frequently dropping down to the 50% or lower research level on a temporary basis.
That's the part that keeps alarming me about these economic failures -- being forced to drop research to zeroso early, and still coming up so deep in the red; seemingly to never recover. Suffice it to say - stalling out on research before city improvements can get into at least the middle-stages of development is so panic-inducing, precisely because fixes had been seeming so desperately useless.
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Old Jan 10, 2006, 06:36 PM   #11
Stephus28
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I got the same situation and I found out that I was considering only the production and food potential, without taking any consideration or very little, to the gold output potential, when was the time to strategicaly locate my new cities.

The easiest way (if you play with open waters or lakes) is to locate your cities near the water. If you play a map with no water or too little, the gold output potential is even more crucial.

Then, you can apply any of the recommanded tips in that page. You will see the difference, .....a lot easyer, even with 15 cities before 100ad's with the game set at epic.
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Old Jan 10, 2006, 07:49 PM   #12
Jimbo30
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When things get real bad, switch all your cities to producing commerce and you can usually get yourself out of an early financial hole.

When this happens, take it as a cue to start building marketplaces and courthouses though, or else the financial problems will turn into a very weak looking military.
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Old Jan 10, 2006, 07:56 PM   #13
Admiral8Q
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Those cottages take a long time to get up to towns, but man are they a necessity
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Old Jan 13, 2006, 05:37 PM   #14
Aelfred
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One thing to say: Overexpansion.
If you were playing on Noble marathon you'd end up bankrupt and without units to defend yourself. I usually keep it to 4-6 cities until post 300-500 AD. I focus on building up those main powerhouse cities and the necessary wonders. I don't understand why people talk so heavily about cottages. They are useful, but not the end all to win. I focus on production in all my main cities, and I am able to keep 100% research throughout the entire game. You should never have to go below 100% research for any reason. If so, you are doing something terribly wrong. I am always able to sell a couple lesser techs to the AI for enough money to continue my research at full strength.
Get Stonehenge, found a religion, (I prefer Judaism) build the holy site, and on marathon w/ 18 civs.... reap in the gold. Go with cheap civics - Representation (Pyramids are a MUST HAVE), Bureacracy, State Property (later in game), and Pacifism. You will find yourself with thousands of gold. On marathon Noble as Elizabeth, without too much focus on cottages, I was pulling in 100+ gold per turn. When I reached rifling, I had over 30,000 gold. it's not hard, just don't overexpand.
Good luck and cheers.
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Old Jan 13, 2006, 06:23 PM   #15
Wodan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aelfred
One thing to say: Overexpansion.
If you were playing on Noble marathon you'd end up bankrupt and without units to defend yourself. I usually keep it to 4-6 cities until post 300-500 AD. I focus on building up those main powerhouse cities and the necessary wonders. I don't understand why people talk so heavily about cottages. They are useful, but not the end all to win. I focus on production in all my main cities, and I am able to keep 100% research throughout the entire game. You should never have to go below 100% research for any reason. If so, you are doing something terribly wrong. I am always able to sell a couple lesser techs to the AI for enough money to continue my research at full strength.
Get Stonehenge, found a religion, (I prefer Judaism) build the holy site, and on marathon w/ 18 civs.... reap in the gold. Go with cheap civics - Representation (Pyramids are a MUST HAVE), Bureacracy, State Property (later in game), and Pacifism. You will find yourself with thousands of gold. On marathon Noble as Elizabeth, without too much focus on cottages, I was pulling in 100+ gold per turn. When I reached rifling, I had over 30,000 gold. it's not hard, just don't overexpand.
Good luck and cheers.
Ignore the Ferengi in the Gorilla suit in the corner.

Just kidding. He has good advice, except I think he's gone overboard in the opposite direction.

Even the bit about 100% research. Personally, I pretty much NEVER run 100% anything. For one thing, if you run 100% research, then all those buildings you built to boost Commerce, like Marketplace and Bank, are all so many expensive outhouses. I usually run 80/10/10 myself.

Wodan
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Old Jan 13, 2006, 06:38 PM   #16
Grachi
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Build Too fast and too large, you end up like the actual Russia of the past...Tons of people, huge amount of territory, and way too poor.
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Old Jan 13, 2006, 06:45 PM   #17
Uiler
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Strange. In Noble I always get Hinduism even though I have never played a civ that starts with Mysticism. I noticed that the AI civs always go for Buddhism first.

So for your first tech research Mysticism, then Polytheism and you will always get Hinduism as all the civs that start with Mysticism will go for Buddhism first and only one will get it.

EDIT: Now that I think about it, I have missed Hinduism a couple of times on Noble. But that's because I got crappy starts and research took a turn or two longer than normal. But normally I get Hinduism.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ereiid
Even on Chieftain, I find that Hinduism and Buddhism are a wash unless I have the good fortune of starting with Mysticism. Judaism seems to be pretty reliable to score.

Last edited by Uiler; Jan 13, 2006 at 06:48 PM.
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Old Jan 13, 2006, 06:45 PM   #18
Aelfred
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I agree with your points, let me reemphasize my statement... notice capitals... You should never HAVE TO go below 100% research. That simply means that you should be making enough money that you can stay at 100% if you want to.
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Old Jan 13, 2006, 08:09 PM   #19
Mister.Donut
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Check out city management thread

This thread: City upkeep will explain city upkeep.
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Old Jan 14, 2006, 03:14 AM   #20
xonixs
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DraconisRex:
Quote:
Code of Laws allows the Courthouse improvement. It is one of the most important city improvements and will cut the maintenece cost of each city in which it is built by 50%
You really think so?
I only build courthouse when i want to build the forbidden palace.
I have one question:
Does the courthouse require maintenance too?
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