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Old Jul 27, 2011, 02:44 AM   #1
snarzberry
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Warmonger strategy for Songhai/Mongolia

Hi guys, here's a simple opening that can be used with these 2 civs to get on a roll militarily and begin sweeping the map. I've used this approach for a few deity wins with both of these civs.

Getting these units, particularly keshiks, out fighting as early as possible is a very strong option. This used to be done by signing RAs to be channeled into Chivalry around turn 70 - 80. Now that isn't possible but there is still a way to get Chivalry around turn 80, or not much later.

The opening works by taking all liberty policies and using the free GP from the Liberty finisher to bulb Chivalry. To speed things up to within the range that we're aiming for we will be allying with a cultural city state early (and possibly building a temple in an alternate, slower version in our second city) - hence the turn 80ish GS for Chivalry.

- Take liberty - worker/settler
- Research animal husbandry before you receive the free settler
- Settle your second city to claim a minimum of 4 horses (possible on high % of maps)
- Steal a worker from a city state if it's an option
- Sell luxuries to nearby civs
- Use 500 to ally a cultural cs (with horses is a nice bonus)
- Tech - writing then Philosophy while hard building library in the capital
- Rush buy library in your second city and build the NC in the capital
- Research Civil Service and tech towards Currency, but get Horseback Riding done quickly if you greatly benefit from the stable
- Build 5 chariot archers and 1 horseman (in most games you'll have access to 6 or more horses from your own lands and your CS ally. If not just buy 2 horses from an AI for 90 )
- When you get the liberty finisher and Currency is finished you can bulb Chivalry and upgrade. It costs 140 per chariot archer or 100 per horseman, so it's quite cheap
- Attack

This can all get done around turn 80 on a good map. After Chivalry, researching Theology-Education and going for the h.sophia in your capital is an option. You still have a good shot at finishing h.sophia around turn 100 so the porcelain tower or notre damne is still a possibility even on deity.

If you play Songhai and pre-build chariot archers then you don't want a barracks as the promotions are wasted, but it's a hammer dependent option for mongolia, as is barracks + building just horsemen for Songhai.

On lower levels or on deity if no one builds it, the oracle will obviously speed up the GS from the liberty finisher. However you'll still be waiting for all of your techs to complete before you can use it. (could fit a RA in around turn 45, but I've found there's not a lot of beaker value). Perhaps on lower levels where you can build it consistently it is an alternative to buying a CS (?).

Last edited by snarzberry; Apr 30, 2012 at 09:05 PM.
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Old Jul 27, 2011, 07:45 AM   #2
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Very nice. Clean, simple and elegant. I was thinking of the liberty GS for chivalry or steel but didn't think you could get it done fast enough. This would be especially quick for Siam's elephants because of their buffed cultural allies (although if you do the free Wats thing you have so much science that you can just hard-tech chivalry). Also, if you get early-rushed, you can just tech the wheel and buy a chariot archer, provided you have the horses improved.
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Old Jul 27, 2011, 11:59 AM   #3
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Just tried it with Arabia on immortal, got chivalry on turn 84 and got 3 civs after it.
I was able to get H.Sophia too followed by Notre-Dame and Porcelain tower.

Nice

Last edited by puyo; Jul 27, 2011 at 12:07 PM.
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Old Jul 27, 2011, 01:04 PM   #4
snarzberry
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Originally Posted by w a i n y View Post
Very nice. Clean, simple and elegant. I was thinking of the liberty GS for chivalry or steel but didn't think you could get it done fast enough. This would be especially quick for Siam's elephants because of their buffed cultural allies (although if you do the free Wats thing you have so much science that you can just hard-tech chivalry). Also, if you get early-rushed, you can just tech the wheel and buy a chariot archer, provided you have the horses improved.
Yeah it'll obviously be the same for the other chivalry civs like siam or, as puyo played, arabia. And yes Siam does gain extra culture too so it's even faster. Thing is with both of those civs is they play such a good peaceful game I rarely go down the warfare path with them. Have you ever tried actually attacking deity map civs with those elephants? I find they burn out against cities. I had 8 elephants on turn 80 recently, a veritable stampede, and got hardly anything done before they started dying.

It can take a little practice as you're juggling beakers, culture and hammers to all achieve key targets as near to each other as possible. I mentioned in the op about building a temple in the second city sometimes. In that order I researched theology earlier to get a head start on h.sophia but this slows down the attack.
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Old Jul 27, 2011, 01:31 PM   #5
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elephants rule. having a great general near helps immensely (puts them at 19 cs vs city). personally if i'm going for a domination win i tend to just burn promotions on instaheals.
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Old Jul 27, 2011, 01:39 PM   #6
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yeah that might help. And IIRC in the game I mentioned I was invading Babylon first with walls and bowmen which contributed to my downfall and apart from that I can't remember many times trying for domination or even much war with Siam.
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Old Jul 27, 2011, 02:30 PM   #7
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- Build 5 chariot archers and 1 horseman (in most games you'll have access to 6 or more horses from your own lands and your CS ally. If not just buy 2 horses from an AI for 90 )
- When you get the liberty finisher and Currency is finished you can bulb Chivalry and upgrade. It costs 140 per chariot archer or 100 per horseman, so it's quite cheap
- Attack

This can all get done around turn 80 on a good map. After Chivalry, researching Theology-Education and going for the h.sophia in your capital is an option. You still have a good shot at finishing h.sophia around turn 100 so the porcelain tower or notre damne is still a possibility even on deity.
Wait...how are you paying for this massive army without tanking your economy with only 2 cities? By turn 100, even if you lucked out with silver and gold, you will probably not have enough to pay upkeep for everything AND have enough to quickly upgrade (on higher difficulties at least).

It seems as though it might be a better deal to go honor instead of Liberty, as you get better units, happiness, AND cheaper upgrade costs. Keshiks are so powerful the extra turns of waiting are worth it.
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Old Jul 27, 2011, 04:19 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by insaneweasel View Post
Wait...how are you paying for this massive army without tanking your economy with only 2 cities? By turn 100, even if you lucked out with silver and gold, you will probably not have enough to pay upkeep for everything AND have enough to quickly upgrade (on higher difficulties at least).

It seems as though it might be a better deal to go honor instead of Liberty, as you get better units, happiness, AND cheaper upgrade costs. Keshiks are so powerful the extra turns of waiting are worth it.
Going Honor doesn't get you the free GS which is needed to bulb Chivalry to do this early as the OP outlines. You're probably right about not needing Keshiks quite so early given their beastliness, but how many turns will you waste hard-teching Chivalry? With Snarz's strat, you could have a capital conquered before you could even get Chivalry via the honor route. It seems like a strong conquest strategy.
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Old Jul 27, 2011, 04:32 PM   #9
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I have tried this strategy a number of times on Deity with Mongols and can't seem to get keshiks earlier than about turn 110. The problem I always have is getting DoWed early by multiple civs and having to burn cash on things like warriors, archers (before the Wheel for chariot archers) and even hard buying walls if needed to survive. The best laid plans are often derailed on Deity, depending on the map of course. I have even had maps where I was dead by turn 30 if I didn't tech Archery first and build plus buy several archers to repel a very early rush.
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Old Jul 27, 2011, 10:16 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by insaneweasel View Post
Wait...how are you paying for this massive army without tanking your economy with only 2 cities? By turn 100, even if you lucked out with silver and gold, you will probably not have enough to pay upkeep for everything AND have enough to quickly upgrade (on higher difficulties at least).

It seems as though it might be a better deal to go honor instead of Liberty, as you get better units, happiness, AND cheaper upgrade costs. Keshiks are so powerful the extra turns of waiting are worth it.
It's actually not that difficult to pay for. From your 2 cities you have an average of 4-5 luxuries to sell. If you get lucky and pop 4 horses in your capital then you can focus more on luxury settling for your second city, bringing in extra cash. The cultural city state is an expense but you get their luxury thrown into the bargain.
Also you get a 10 turn golden age during the liberty policies.

When you bulb Chivalry if you do not have enough gold to upgrade you could always take out a war loan with a distant civ, even if it does tank your economy and you operate way into the red for a while because you're about to take city after city after city.

The difference 20 turns can make should not need to be stressed. That's possibly 2 entire civs crushed, especially if you're playing mongolia. By the time you get to the 4th or 5th civ the defence levels you'll be facing will be massively different depending if you launched your attack on turn 82 or turn 102. This type of blitzkrieg strategy really comes down to momentum and the earlier you start the easier it is to build.

Last edited by snarzberry; Jul 27, 2011 at 11:52 PM.
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Old Jul 27, 2011, 10:36 PM   #11
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I have tried this strategy a number of times on Deity with Mongols and can't seem to get keshiks earlier than about turn 110. The problem I always have is getting DoWed early by multiple civs and having to burn cash on things like warriors, archers (before the Wheel for chariot archers) and even hard buying walls if needed to survive. The best laid plans are often derailed on Deity, depending on the map of course. I have even had maps where I was dead by turn 30 if I didn't tech Archery first and build plus buy several archers to repel a very early rush.
Turn 110 is very late even without bulbing chivalry. What is slowing you down from your output side? , , or ?

About getting DoWed, this is to be expected and is usually a blessing in disguise. That is to say unless you're getting totally dogpiled from both sides before turn 30 or something like that. Having to deal with that kind of situation will probably derail your plans no matter what you're trying to achieve.

Remember this is not exactly ReXing your butt off, it's only founding a single extra city, so there is a decent chance you can avoid DoW's completely in the first 80 turns but as I said before you are probably better off if you are DoWed (within reason). This is because it's usually your neighbour that DoW's you and you were going to DoW them soon anyway. Now you can defend until your invading force is ready, never give them peace, and then when you shortly take all of their cities except one you haven't even gained any warmonger diplo penalties with the other civs keeping trading/RA relationships viable longer and on better terms for you.

I know you play deity so you have to deal often with early rushes, sounds as if you deal with them differently than I do. I never purchase a warrior when early-rushed as I don't like throwing down the toilet, I mean really what's the point? It's ranged units or nothing. And while I don't find walls necessary I do highly value settling on hills for the exact reason of early defence. The lay of the map, including the identity of my neighbours, tells me what the likelihood of an early attack is and it is that probability that guides how early I go after Archery.

I'm sure you'll be able to get keshiks at least around turn 90 if you follow the build in the OP, at least most of the time.
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Old Jul 27, 2011, 10:50 PM   #12
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I prefer to go AH -> Wheel and Liberty -> Settler, which lets you skip archery and have highly promoted units to upgrade.

You must buy a worker in your horse city.
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Old Jul 27, 2011, 11:05 PM   #13
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Straight to chariot archers hey? yeah that'd work. It does make a difference in that approach whether or not you can steal a worker. I'd imagine that you're settling your second city, absent a culture ruin, around turn 35 so most workers are out then. It's good to not have to spend that first few hundred gold on him. If you use that to contribute to a cultural city-state ally instead it will translate into a significantly faster bulb for Chivalry.

Dave, how were you going about getting chivalry in your mongolia games? teching it or bulbing?
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Old Jul 28, 2011, 12:30 AM   #14
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Bulbing of course.

You get the gold back soon enough by hard-building the 2nd library with an improved horse tile.
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Old Jul 28, 2011, 12:44 AM   #15
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True, you'd end up in the same kind of position but with access to chariot archers so you never have to buy an archer to deal with rushes. You pay for it with a delay in hooking up resources.
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Old Aug 26, 2011, 04:15 AM   #16
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Apologies for the necro, but tried this yesterday and what a magnificent difference it makes, thank you for the guide. I'm at turn 200 and have 3 out of 7 civs left to conquer, shaving at least 100 turns off my normal game. Chivalry at turn 85, awesome!

However, this rapid expansion comes at a price. Happiness is the only thing slowing down my progress and I've already had to fight one war bordering on severe unhappiness the whole way through. I've started annexing cities to reduce the pressure but that's having knock on effects in culture which I'd rather avoid.

How are you handling the hapiness factor when you've got such rapid expansion vs a lack of infrastructure\social policy that is normal for this period in the game? I'm coping, but could be doing better I feel.
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Old Aug 26, 2011, 08:32 AM   #17
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I'm going to try this strategy out with Spain. Their UA will most likely give me quite a bit of gold (I generally get 2-3 scouts out depending on the size of map) so I'll have a nice advantage for rush-buying buildings and units/upgrades (I don't like leaving a lot of room for error or rerolling). Conquistadors FTW.

I just finished a game on Immortal with Spain. Only ever built 2 cities...the rest I conquered and puppeted (except capitals). Won the game (standard map) by 1979. 5 or 6 of my Conquistadors from my initial push stuck around long enough to be made modern armor and, by then, had the multiple attack upgrade and everything. They were hitting Russia's cities for 11 or so damage. 3 of them is all it took to take down a 35 pop. capital. It was beautiful
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Old Aug 26, 2011, 08:41 AM   #18
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To be honest, it works for pretty much any civ when warmongering. Knights by turn 85 makes you pretty much a steamroller.

However, as I've said above, happiness is a massive issue when you've done so little infrastructure building and you're expanding at nearly a city a turn.

A suggestd solution would be nice, although I've got a bank holiday weekend to experiment!!

(500 hours played and I never took the time to work this out! Utterly revolutionised my gameplay!)
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Old Aug 26, 2011, 11:59 AM   #19
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To be honest, it works for pretty much any civ when warmongering. Knights by turn 85 makes you pretty much a steamroller.

However, as I've said above, happiness is a massive issue when you've done so little infrastructure building and you're expanding at nearly a city a turn.

A suggestd solution would be nice, although I've got a bank holiday weekend to experiment!!

(500 hours played and I never took the time to work this out! Utterly revolutionised my gameplay!)
Glad you got some use out of the opening

Yeah, managing unhappiness when you're really on a conquering spree is really the wall that you run up against, specifically the -10 penalty. If you're going all in for domination then your SP choices should be heavily weighted towards happiness policies, I'm sure you already know that.

A tactic to incorporate into your conquering is to limit the amount of cities that you actually keep from conquered enemies. If it doesn't have a strategic/lux resource that you want, a wonder or some strategic significance then you don't want to take the major hit to unhappiness by keeping it. Raze or puppet - then sell. Selling some of these superfluous cities brings in nice gold.
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Old Aug 26, 2011, 03:47 PM   #20
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I'm sure you'll be able to get keshiks at least around turn 90 if you follow the build in the OP, at least most of the time.
I have tried about 10-12 different Deity maps (all pangaea, standard or small size, other settings were standard) using Mongols and the best I have done so far is turn 98 for keshiks. In these games I ran into one or more of the following issues that slowed me down:

- Sandwiched in between 2 aggressive civs that both DoW early (before turn 50, sometimes before turn 30), resulting in needing to spend gold on rush-buying units and walls just to survive (Deity Challenge 1 was a good example of this in my game)
- Poor gold production sites (e.g., lack of additional copies of lux to sell) making it tough to rush buy a library in city 2 and to ally an early cultural CS
- Poor production in city sites, taking too long to build NC, etc.
- Neighbor is semi-isolated with space to REX early and you are their only border. In one game Askia was my neighbor, REXed 5-6 cities while building a huge army, DoWed me on turn 70ish before I had keshiks and steamrolled my chariot archers with pikes, horsemen, swords, archers and catapults.
- All cultural CS already allied with AI before you have the cash, requiring 1000 gold to overtake (can be a real problem with several civs like Alex, Ram, Darius, Gandhi, Harun on the same map). Really bad if the civ that is buying up all the CS also DoWs you early and you can't negotiate a reasonable peace.
- Inability to find cultural CS due to isolated start and barbs or neighbor (that won't sell you open borders or at war from early DoW) blocking access to the rest of the map. Losing scouts to barbs or war slowing/halting your exploration.
- Lack of nearby horses

Sometimes there were several of the above issues in the same game, e.g., Deity Challenge 4 with an aggressive neighbor (France) DoWing around turn 20, and Cathy and/or Oda DoWing a bit later, plus a poor production start.

I can definitely see how low 80's can be possible, but tough to do in practice on Deity.
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