Discussion in 'Civ4 Strategy Articles' started by SoxSexSax, Jun 6, 2006.
try islands game -=)
to say that all online play is geared towards military is correct and not correct at the same time. generally what distinguishes the best players from the average noob is that the best players know when and how to build workers, settlers, and buildings. They would own you no matter what the settings or the map because they understand fundamental game concepts like hurry production of settlers and workers at all costs. If you aren't chopping or slaving them you are too slow and will inevitably die. If you spend more than 3 turns on a building you are wasting time and will inevitably die. If you are building banks in a city with 1 gold piece you are a moron and are already dead. Army and power is your backbone. To put it simply no one wants a long drawn out war, and if your opponent knows it will take them forever to kill you or possibly even lose all their units attacking you, THEN THEY WON'T. It is very easy to turtle up and play defensive and go for space race or whatever late era victory you want. In fact I would wager that when two very experienced online vets go at it and all things are equal the game will eventually come down to one of those late game victories. When neither player can kill the other is when the real game of civ begins.
I dunno. I agree with you that military is the backbone of a multiplayer game. And I also agree that, paradoxically, if two players are great on military, then the games often turn peaceful -- because it's impossible for them to eliminate each other, and they have more to lose by attacking than to gain.
However... I think the part that I disagree with is that "when neither player can kill the other is when the real game of civ begins". The game usually degenerates into who has mastered the nuances of chopping and slaving, and who is maximizing the most from their leader's traits. If those things are equal, then it degenerates into who has the patience and dexterity to shave off a turn from their worker tasks, or the patience and attention to time the building of a wonder with the discovery of a key tech. That kind of by-yourself game play is not what good competition is all about, and is more like writing a math test.
Moreover, that's not strategy. You can't have strategy without having to react to what an opponent is doing. It takes a lot of skill to do something by yourself better than somebody else, but that's a skill other than strategy.
Another bad habit from single player - poor distribution of troops.
In single player, the AI always tries to hit your border cities, no matter how heavily they're fortified.
In multi-player mode, the human player will often take advantage of covering terrain to hit cities deeper in, burning some cottages along the way. If you keep the bulk of your army on the borders and don't bother building city walls in your core cities, that's asking for trouble.
Also consider how difficult it can be to try and dig out an unit parked on a hill with jungle/forest. Make sure you've got an archer occupying those points (if they exist) to make it a bit more painful for an invading army to take.
Its not that you should build walls in your inner territory (because that is a waste of hammers), but more a good infrastructure so your troops can be flexible.
Woods directly near cities should be chopped asap.
Here are some more things you should NEVER do in an online game:
1) Attack with last unit out of ur city (usually the city is your capital and said event occurs very early on) unless you have 99% odds, such as spear vs chariot. The RNG is not your friend often. trying an 80% battle with your last unit means 20% of the time you are dead.
2) Related to this. Do not attack scouts on forest hills with warriors at 70% odds. Nothing to gain a lot to lose here, especially with opponents close. Since scouts can't attack, the unit itself is no threat. So he can see your city at turn 10. So what, everybody has the same thing in there city at this point anyways. If your warrior dies, you delay getting your worker out and are more likely to be choked by close opponents.
3) Make sure you have more then enough to kill a forted stack of units. Nothing is worse then only wounding an entire stack while u lose your units. Now your opponent can promote the units and make them even harder to kill.
4) Not planting on Plain hill with your capital If you can keep food resource in city radius. Always worth moving one turn at start to do this. Thats +120 hammers immediately over the time of a full typical MP game. But dont move generally if you cant see your food unless you know the movement will keep hiddin food in the radius.
Later in the game, sure. We all end up building railroads over every single square.
But earlier in the game, trying to build roads everywhere is a waste of resources as well. Deploying 90% of your units on frontier means that a couple of strategic razed roads could trash your flexibility.
Remember, a penetration strike could also be useful if your combat troops had city garrison promotions but got lured out of the border cities in order to re-inforce the interior.
Also, since jungle gives no hammer upon being chopped, there are plenty of times where human players in MP leave jungles in place.
In later era starts the same applies to explorers, don't attack them with your starting units (even if they are sitting on your food resource!)
Yep, the one exception to this would a Marble/Stone-Plains hill in an ancient game it is worth losing your food to plant on this kind of tile. In later era games plant on this kind of tile if you have a chance, but don't give up food to do so.
I disagree. I will allways do this if I am playing an aggresive civ. The experiences will gain a nice shock promotion to counter new units. Or even better, a woodsman 2.
I disagree on this too. It depends a lot of your current starting position to consider the move. It is profitable to settle this way, but I would never use this as a rule-of-thumb. For example, is it the only hill in the area? If so, you would be facing a low production capital, generally.
Lol offcourse you shouldn't be covering all your land with roads. Do it smart. Connect your cities diagonally, make a road near your boarder. Remember Imperium Romanum eh?
Cool you've revived this thread guys. Read through the entire 5 pages and now I'm really hooked on some serious MP action How do I enter the ladder games?
Whether or not I would attack that scout on the forest hill would depend on its location, whether or not him seeing the squares he can is good or bad, and whether or not he is a noob.
You wouldn't want someone seeing your city or all the tiles in front of it so you couldn't sneak units past it. Sometimes it is useful to let a player think his spot is useful and have it sit it there instead of exploring more and finding out your have that copper.
If im an aggressive civ i'd probaby just attack it without thinking at all.
And if he's a noob losing a unit to him is no real loss to me and besides it'll make him feel cool.
The best strategy to get that explorer off your forest hill is to chop the forest first.
But if you didn't, then make and chop 2 catapults and attack it.
However if u are playing BTS I am not sure what the best thing to do is. Probably an archer or chariot followed up by 2 axemen if catapults are no longer viable.
Planting on a two hammer giving tile for your city center is the best thing you can do. This is the first step into becoming a powerhouse in civ in an ancient era start. Planting your first city on turn 3 or 4 is acceptable if you find your optimum location. I love civs that start with a scout just for this reason alone !! But I am agreed that having food is a must, sometimes u just cannot plant on one of these tiles, but for me a nearby cow is enough for me to plant on the elephant near it
The worker value of this alone pays for itself. In quick game speed this plant will give you a worker in 8 turns. Its 10 turns without it.
That worker can chop another and make the next one in 5 turns. If u didn't plant on a two hammer that worker chops the second for 7 turns.
Compare 2 workers in 13 turns vs. 2 workers in 17 turns
If utilized properly with worked squares and chopped settlers and a defense appropriate to keep you allive and unpillaged this effect will snowball you into a 5 or 6 city powerhouse when they have only 3 or 4 (they being the average player who never chops or makes enough workers)
Having 1.5 to 2 workers per city is an absolute must to survive against elite players online. Your first build should always be a worker unless you are threatened or spiritual and slaving the worker is just as fast or faster.
I dont often play on multiplayer, when I do I usually fail, (im not used to having to build up such an army, when I play on monarch single-player its not really necessary) i guess you could call me a peacemonger. But interesting read, and a good post.
I agree with you. If I decide to muster the guts to play multiplayer, I'll look you up. One should only go to war if one has to. This is not to say that war is not an element of Civ IV, but making it into some kind of a wargame spoils it completely. One should be able to win by cultural or other victory. We just need to scare up enough of the right kind of players...not ones that play like Rambo without a jockstrap! It's a strategy game, not a war game...
To ignore war, and the potential benefits of an offensive, is to ignore part of the game. It is impossible to play optimally without balancing war with empire building. The dynamics of humans are quite different though. They lack the AI bonuses that make rushes on the typical MP game speed, quick, impossible, but at the same time represent threats in entirely new sets of ways...unless they suck.
Point is though, that the game is balanced to favor military. You can go against it if you want to, but it's not going to be strong play...although culture on quick is pretty rigged.
I agree, don't think of it as three civs. Think of it as one civ with three leaders!
There are many formats of multiplayer online play....
the one discussed here is mainly ancient teamers and CTON's /ffa.
but there are also..
OCC games both always peace and always war....a different animal alltogether...OCC games are either rennasence start or ancient start...very different to each other and both very fun to play..
Different era teamers/CTON/duel/ffa....playing medieval teamer in inland sea 3x3 is tottaly different than ancient in tbg. This is a teamer where you need to tech, build cottages, make great people, expand....very fun to play
Each era has its own strategy....and each owe needs to be mastered in a different way.
Of course there is one common dinominator (apart form always peace games)....you cannot ignore military!! In certain eras like classical and medi you need to tech fast as well, but without ignoring military of course..
I find it strange that people want to play the same stuff all the time...this is a game that offers so many different possible set ups, that it is a waste to ignore it.
And there is always pitboss.....
When should you keep or raze captured cities? Obviously it's diffrient than single player. Oh and good guide
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