[C3C] 20k Culture attempt. Can the game be salvaged?


Aug 24, 2013
So a little background here. I have been playing conquests with the intent of getting culture victory. I used to not like that condition because one day I won by that when I wanted to win by conquest. I've made a few culture victories before and am still tweaking the strategy up a bit.

The starting position was a great one. River, cow, sea access, and a luxury resource all within the immediate area. Also ivory semi nearby for Zeus. The Zulu randomly decided to take one of my cities out of nowhere. They violated a ROP I set up which I thought was really funny because I was going to do the same to them for their incense.

The Persians also wanted something from me, can't remember what. I attempted to get that side of the world to dogpile on the Persians so they wouldn't come near me. It only made them stronger, but I was able to sue for peace. Also the Russians randomly decided to attack, so I enlisted the help of their neighbors and we destroyed them.

Everything was going well after that point. I was on track to get my culture victory and just needed to keep it up to the modern age. Research computers, build SETI, then research miniaturization and build The Internet. Last get genetics and build those wonders. Then I'd be done. I automated my workers. Yes I know you shouldn't but everything was done that needed to be done anyway aside from random pollution spots. Then I just built my cities up out of boredom. Yes I know it's bad to build everything you can. I was just bored waiting to research and be done with it.

Then, suddenly I get the notification that Korea is building the United Nations. I swore to myself because I had forgotten they were scientific and had traded luxuries for tech plus gpt for quite some time. Their free tech just happened to be Fission.

Since my 20k culture city is my capitol, I cannot use a palace prebuild. I attempted to get a spy in Korea so that I could steal the technology. Never got the chance to try and steal the technology, the spy was killed in the attempt to place it. Solution? War Korea and take the city they are building it in. The solution worked but then it didn't.

Korea decided to enlist Egypt against me. Which made me laugh because Egypt only has 3 cities since they are on a large island. Then they enlisted the Babs against me. Then the Babs decided to enlist Persia after me. Then the Celts randomly decided they wanted to join in the action. And the Celts enlisted the Ottomans against me. I managed to get the Iroquois to sign a MA with me against Korea as they are the major threat since aside from one Celts city, a large mountain range provides a pretty good barrier against attack. But the Iroquois have a mutual protection pact with the Ottomans. So it won't be long before the Iroquois declare war on me.

Also somehow in the mix the Sumerians decided they didn't like me, can't exactly remember what happened there. The world is currently just in absolute chaos with multiple nations being at war with each other that all started with me trying to stop Korea from building the UN. As I write this it occurs to me that the Sumerians are scientific too and I made the same mistake of trading tech for gpt + lux that I did with Korea. So if they get Fission as their free tech, I can't really stop them. Diplomatic victory is completely out of the equation because everyone (except England but once you see England you'll lol) is furious with me. Well ok the Iroquois are happy with me now, but since they have a MPP with Ottomans they will declare war soon enough.

Oh, and the Koreans are building the UN again in old Dutch territory.


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As I write this it occurs to me that the Sumerians are scientific too and I made the same mistake of trading tech for gpt + lux that I did with Korea.

I don't think giving the AIs gpt increases their tech rate. I think one of the modders said that they get forced to run 50% science. Them having more gpt though probably has plenty of situations where they can acquire tech via trading from others more quickly.

Checking the save:

O. K. it's Monarch. The AIs have a cost discount of 90% at this level. They need 900 shields to complete the U. N. The AI never prebuilds. They only have cascades from other wonders. The only wonder being built right now is the U. N. by the Koreans in Amerstdam. It's a size 12 city with some mining, and a mountain used, possibly having a factory and a coal plant. I can't tell.

You have a battleship possibility costing 200 shields as your best prebuild I can see. You can get Fission in 6 turns at -237 gpt having a treasury of 1876 gold. Amerstdam has only one hill mined, you have two, and one can click on workers before ending this turn to deautomate them for the next turn I believe. I think you can wake all those automated workers right now. You have two, no three, irrigated grassland in Trondheim. I think that's 82 shields per turn that Trondheim could make, ignoring pollution. That's 13 turns on the U. N. If started on a battleship 3 turns from now, with 3 turns left on Fission, and then used "What's the big picture", you could swap the battleship so it doesn't complete and move those shields to the U. N. It's 13 turns total for you to build the U. N. if you mine those tiles and have no pollution, I think. So, with prebuilding that would be 16 turns from now.

Gilgamesh irrigated almost everything. I don't believe a single city of his could beat you to the U. N. even if he learns Fission right now.

Seoul doesn't have a coal plant. Did you sell it? If you didn't, and didn't destroy it by artillery fire or a bomber, it seems likely that Amerstdam never got a coal plant.

You have units in cities like Mpondo that can get moved to your borders. In Stockholm also. And anything along the Iroquois borders probably, which isn't near the Celtic Vladivostok. I think I agree with the MPP with the Iroquois. You can attack Ottoman units in your territory. Just don't attack them in their territory.

You have cities with builds such as a factory, etc. Those could get changed to military builds.

You might draft after you have Fission.

I do think that you could make it to Amsterdam in a few turns. Korea doesn't have flaks to counter bombers that I can tell at least. You have some unused artillery proper in cities this turn. You might put them all in the bananas near Namp'o to shell it out next turn. Wonsan might get swapped to a settler also and get it fairly soon. Or you could cash rush a settler in Seoul right now for just 88 gold. Artillery proper probably don't make any sense in Korean cities with the flip risk, though you're trouncing Korea in total culture.

Yes, I do think this game is still winnable as a 20k victory in Trondheim.
So, as for not so relevant and potentially rude though maybe informative commentary....

For any other 20k culture victory, well I would almost argue that the AIs attacking you were trying to do you a favor.

In general, ceteris paribus, the best wonder to pick next is the one with best shield to culture ratio. Now, that's ceteris paribus, and things aren't equal, and there's plenty of exceptions. But, The Heroic Epic is 200 shields (or an MGL if you get lucky enough) for 4 culture! The ratio is a mere 50 shields per culture point! The Pyramids, The Sistine Chapel, J. S. Bach's, and Cope's Observatory, all great choices are 100 shields per culture point. The Oracle is 300 shields for 4 culture, for 75 shields per culture point. Newton's is 400 shields for 6 culture points as is The Great Library, for 66 and 2/3 shields per culture point. The Museum of Mausollos is 100 shields per culture point. Even Shakespeare's Theater is 450 shields for 8 culture, at 56 shields per culture point (of course, Shakespeare's is still probably better for the more citizen potential and thus more shields per turn). Thus, unless I've missed something, is the best wonder in the game for it's shield to culture ratio, only regular buildings outclass it considering the numbers only. Probably Cope's and Newton's are better since you can build the next wonder sooner possibly with them or get an SGL earlier, and wonders that trigger golden ages in general are for sure better. And there's also the concern that building The Heroic Epic now might result in some great wonder not getting built. But, still, 50 shields per culture point is awesome.

Sun Tzu's isn't that good. Check the numbers. It costs so many turns to hand-build. I generally avoid Knights Templar also, though it does have the auto-production bonus.

I don't know what your middle age research was. But, it doesn't look like you try to keep either a build on Bach's, the Sistine Chapel, or Cope's while also racing to Free Artistry. Or if you did, you had some research issues.

The Koreans built Universal Suffrage ahead of you. Oh, I see you built TOE first. Alright, the AIs wonder building progression is almost always Universal Suffrage first because of their research path. The first thing lies in that they will usually pick something other than Electricity first. The second thing is that even if they learn Electricity, they won't start on Scientific Method until they have Replaceable Parts.

You built Leo's Workshop and Smith's in Bergen. Were those intended to kill AI cascades? I think I've seen that hypothesis before. It has something going for it. It's by no means a mere guess. It's not an implausible argument on it's face. The cost though is 1200 shields sunk into wonders. That's 1200 shields that could have gone to trebuchets, knights, heck even longbows to try to get that MGL so you can build the Heroic Epic, or possibly even get two MGLs so you can MGL rush The Heroic Epic in a single turn. Or into research buildings or happiness buildings, which might get you an MGL sooner or get you to a better position sooner. And as a reminder, an army costs 400 shields. That's a 400 shield prebuild. So, contrary to the hypothesis of killing off potential wonder cascades from AIs, I'd recommend not building wonders like that in Bergen. And The Military Academy and The Pentagon both generate one culture per turn.

There are two things I simply fail to understand. You built Wall Street and The Intelligence Agency in Bergen. Perhaps you didn't understand you could only build those once. But, you can always run out of cultural builds in your 20k city, and in the vast majority of 20k games that happens at some point in time no matter what I seem to do. But, it's best if that happens later rather than sooner.

I abandoned Bergen. O. K. it's not only build those buildings once. I was wrong above. It's you can only have one version of Wall Street and one version of the Intelligence Agency. So, if they don't exist at present in your empire, you can build them, even if you built them previously. The Intelligence Agency is a 400 shield prebuild, correct? If you finished a cavalry immediately this turn (I think you can finish a tank instead), and then started on a battleship, and then with one turn left on that disbanded Bergen, I think you could have The Intelligence Agency prebuild not complete in time. Especially with irrigation to slow the build and then mining once you're sure you can get the timing to not complete The Intelligence Agency.
Agree with Spoonwood here.
Another tip: Ulsan, the current Korean capital, is quite far from Amsterdam. That means Amsterdam has quite a bit of corruption. Therefore, don't capture Ulsan! The palace would then most probably jump closer to Amsterdam, increasing the production capacity of Amsterdam! So bypass Ulsan, but pillage all roads around it, that denies Amsterdam access to any lux resources Korea might be importing from overseas... With only 2 luxes near Amsterdam, they will hire a few more clowns, reducing Amsterdam's production even further. I would be surprised, if Amsterdam makes significantly more than 30spt, which means 30 turns for the UN. Did you pay attention, when Amsterdam started the UN? You could probably even finish Computers first and do Fission afterwards and still beat them to the UN or just capture Amsterdam in the next 20 turns, and the danger will be over.
BTW: Korea is a Democracy and you have already captured 4 of their cities. If you capture 4 more, their war weariness will reach level 4, which means they will go into revolt, giving you another handful of turns, where Amsterdam can't produce anything... (And with a bit of luck, they will revolt to Fascism, meaning every city will lose 2 population, and at size 10, Amsterdam is no threat at all, even if you don't manage to capture it within the next 20 turns...)
You have two, no three, irrigated grassland in Trondheim. I think that's 82 shields per turn that Trondheim could make, ignoring pollution.
I count 4. That makes 86spt, so 12 turns for the UN.

You can easily finish Computers in 2 turns, so switch to Battleship now, then switch to SETI interturn, before the Battleship completes, then SETI needs 9 more turns to complete, during which time you can research (or trade?) Fission, then do the UN in 12 turns, and to be on the save side, capture Amsterdam in the meantime. The game is basically in the bag...
Once I get to the Middle Ages, I go with Feudalisim and start building AOW. By the time I get to Chivalry if the AI is still behind I go ahead and just finish it then start working on Knights Templar. Then I go Theo - Edu - Astro - Nav. Then I do Banking and Economics. While I'm doing this, I let the AI research Invention, gunpowder, and chemistry then trade them for the tech trees I have. Then I go Physics and get Theory of Gravity and let the AI research Metallurgy and MT then trade those techs to catapult me into the Industrial Age. I'm sure I could tweak the system up a bit.

Leo's workshop built in an alternate city is to stop the wonder cascade yes. As is building AOW, though I think now it's better to build AOW in an alternate city instead of the 20k one. Smith's Trading Co is there in the alternate city because by the time I get to Smith's there's more than one choice of wonder that I can build. I'd rather get the bonus as soon as possible. Wall Street and IA were built there for the same reason, but now I see the benefit of waiting and using those as prebuild instead.

The Babs ended up sniping Newton's from me as a cascade from failing to build ST.

Abandoning the city with WS/IA is a good idea. And I'm able to rebuild them in the same turn. So now I have prebuild.

I am actually going to give Korea peace for two main reasons. Once I research Computers I'll have to trade it with them for Fission anyway. Better give them peace now and give it a few turns. The second reason is they are at war with the Ottomans as well as Iroquois. Giving them a ROP will allow them to fight whoever they want and bypass my territory instead of slowly trudge through it.
I took over the three Celt cities so I could have that mountain natural barrier between them. The gamble with Korea paid off. They are fighting the Celts and Ottomans now too. Also turns out uranium was on a grassland square within the capitol so that's another few shields.

Not doing SETI first is a bit of a gamble, but I think with Manhattan Project still available the AI will cascade to that one. They can have that one.
ou can easily finish Computers in 2 turns, so switch to Battleship now, then switch to SETI interturn, before the Battleship completes, then SETI needs 9 more turns to complete, during which time you can research (or trade?) Fission, then do the UN in 12 turns, and to be on the save side, capture Amsterdam in the meantime.

Yeah, that's a better idea.

Once I get to the Middle Ages, I go with Feudalisim and start building AOW. By the time I get to Chivalry if the AI is still behind I go ahead and just finish it then start working on Knights Templar. Then I go Theo - Edu - Astro - Nav. Then I do Banking and Economics. While I'm doing this, I let the AI research Invention, gunpowder, and chemistry then trade them for the tech trees I have. Then I go Physics and get Theory of Gravity and let the AI research Metallurgy and MT then trade those techs to catapult me into the Industrial Age. I'm sure I could tweak the system up a bit.

I usually go Monotheism - Theology - Education - maybe Astronomy or Music Theory if I think my capital might run out of cultural builds - Printing Press - Democracy - Free Artistry. Earlier build on a cathedral I like, the math is good on that. Monotheism for cathedral. Theology for Sistine Chapel. Education for university.

I guess that Sun Tzu's makes getting barracks up earlier. Not all cities can use barracks, and they just eat up upkeep cost when not building units. Also, they are only 20 shields as militaristic. I will take the time to put barracks in a Statue of Zeus city, and even disband units to get those barracks in a single turn. Maybe a warrior or two I used as MP earlier. Maybe disband a warrior and then short-rush a worker or spearman or archer and then swap to barracks, if I can acquire cash somehow, but often I struggle with that since I'll do negative gpt research. One of the reasons I really started to prefer a 27 shield capital, lies in that the GA bumps that up to exactly 40 shields. But, those can be difficult to find, and time consuming, so I can't recommend searching for those starts. 20 shield locations aren't that time consuming. If you don't the potential of 20 shields for a 20k, that sounds more like a 20k "for the challenge" mode game.

So, with respect to leaders, a good early combined attack can help. Some catapults or trebuchets can weaken their units. This way when you elites attack they both come as more likely to win, and not lose as many hitpoints. If a 6/6 ancient elite cavalry wounds to 4/6 instead 2/6 those catapults or trebuchets are well worth it I think. The elite cavalry can still attack next turn with as good as odds as a full health veteran swordsman. The more elite wins you have the better. If they wound less, and can't make back to a city with barracks quickly, like let's say you just have swords or archers instead of AC even because you had trouble getting ivory, they can still heal more quickly if they wound less. So, those catapults or trebuchets can help it two ways it seems, both by preventing losses, and reducing wounding.

I think what's different lies in that it might not be so good to try to storm their cities. The war isn't about captures initially at least. It's about generating a leader. If you have a few elites (two to four), it might be better to try to win more with those elites than charging at them full force.

The AIs will reliably prioritize researching Feudalism. I don't remember ever even thinking about researching it first for any reason. I guess if I were playing in some game where I really needed a stronger defender immediately and couldn't wait to trade for it. Even if I were playing a completely self-reliant game, by waiting on researching on Feudalism, there's some probability that a 3rd, 4th, etc. AI learns it and cheapens its cost.

Smith's Trading Co is there in the alternate city because by the time I get to Smith's there's more than one choice of wonder that I can build. I'd rather get the bonus as soon as possible.

Smith's is really nice and convenient to have. It definitely feels better to have it than not! But, the upkeep on markets, 5 banks, and 5 stock exchanges, isn't that much. I don't think not building it would change your finish date on maps that you play. In fact, I think it's the reverse. By sinking 600 shields into Smith's, you have 600 shields gone to that wonder that could have gone to better research or progress towards the Heroic Epic. If anything, it might be more like choosing Smith's over progress towards the Heroic Epic you make your finish date later. Also, and maybe more enjoyable than thinking about potential finish dates you're more secure if you can get that first army victory.

The Apollo Program generates culture.

Would be interesting to see how you finished up MRG. This save has definitely been interesting.

Oh... I took at the cultural builds in Trondheim via the F5 screen. You built the library in 1495 AD. The cathedral and colosseum after that. I don't know if you know, but all buildings double in cultural value after 1000 years. Yes, it's possible that one might miss some wonder by building those buildings later. But, they will double in culture later if built later or not at all if they get built too late. So, if you miss some wonder by building them earlier, it's actually not too bad, or even possibly better miss that wonder. Personally I often haven't cared if I miss The Great Wall or The Great Lighthouse if I get a library and a colosseum in earlier.

Also, the AIs won't prioritize researching literature, which I think you saw elsewhere recently. It's hard for me to imagine that by choosing to build a little library first, I would miss The Great Library... at least on most levels. A Temple of Artemis cascade could enable them to build it, but they have to learn literature for that to happen.
Yeah I'm still learning the culture victory method. Domination/Conquest was how I started playing this. Then diplomatic victory. Diplomatic is extremely easy but it can also be super easy to lose too. I remember in a GOTM where you couldn't build settlers I decided to go for the diplomatic victory and lost to the Iroquois.

After seeing the replay I noted that Newton's was sniped after I built Smiths. Hard to keep track sometimes when you play multiple games, lol. I think that was a situation where I could have just let Smiths go and gotten Newton's.

The remaining turns was...interesting. I managed to get at peace with everyone and allowed anyone to have a ROP with me so that they could have their wars. The Celts were wiped out and the Iroquois were almost wiped out too. A handful more turns and they probably would be.

Also there's a Korean colony of uranium that I was waiting for my culture to shift and gobble it up. Didn't happen before I won, but it would have been pretty funny.

Attached is final save.


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Huh. Wang has Superconductor and Satellites, but doesn't have Synthetic Fibers. I thought that he would prioritize Synthetic Fibers, but I have the most trouble following AI research patterns in the modern era. Let me check DaveMcW's list...

Alright, I don't think that Democracy is so much avoided. Nor Communism. Don't recall what he based that list on. I think I remember that the Laser does seem low priority. Currency is one that the AIs avoid in general, but Korea has a tendency to research it. Monarchy appears before construction. They tend to value governments highly is something I remember someone else writing based on something else. He does say that Synthetic Fibers would usually be high on the AIs list. Synthetic Fibers has a unit. AIs tend to value unit based techs. Bronze Working, Warrior Code, Iron Working, The Wheel, Feudalism, Invention, Gunpowder, Nationalism, Replaceable Parts, Flight. Satellites has a unit, so it can be a decent chance for research depending on what an AI knows. Wang getting Superconductor may be luck. I think my high level space games ended up with me researching The Laser. I think that focusing on the bottom part of that tree is usually the better way to go, and trying to trade for the upper part. Though, getting the Apollo Program up earlier rather than later also can help.

Your reputation is shot, so gpt deals would be out, but I don't think trading reputation affects lump sums. Wang probably would only be insulted not "never will take" by offering all of the treasury for either of his techs. Every type of steal is easily cheaper. Wang has monopoly techs, so the cost couldn't go down to purchase, I suppose.
Wang was pretty happy to trade computers for most of his gold, spices, and Rocketry. I switched out Rocketry with Fission and the trade advisor said it was acceptable.

Delaying Wang from building the UN worked. I just second guessed myself because I thought he might trade it around with the Sumerians and Babs.
You have to add harbours, commercial docks and airfields to that.

I definitely did forget about harbors. I have built commercial docks too, but that often comes rather late. So much already is already researched or traded for by then. I think sometimes I forgot or ended up delaying commercial docks. I don't think I knew about airfields getting the benefit, so thanks for that. I haven't built an airfield in any 20k game that I recall. Admittedly, I did often play powerful starts and if you play 20ish instead of 25-30ish locations, so needing an airfield might be more likely. Checking the civiliopedia... oh, it's the city improvement (airports) not the land alteration (airfields). Well, I haven't built an airport either in a 20k game that I recall. But, even the cost savings of airports are far into the future compared to the possibility of getting the Heroic Epic in the late middle ages or early industrial age.

Thanks for the reminder. I definitely didn't remember all that about Smith's.

It still seems like a lot to think Smith's is better than an earlier Heroic Epic though, or that it's better than Shake's or Newton's. But, perhaps that means that Smith's probably is better than Magellan's Voyage even though Magellan's has the better shield/culture ratio.

Also, I do recall selling tech enough in some 20k games that having positive gpt did happen. Though admittedly selling and trading tech in 20k games has a bigger potential downside than in many other games. Though maybe if I had Smith's more often, I could have purchased units towards the Heroic Epic or city improvements to pick up research.
I don't know squat about culture wins. I just wondered, if it has been mentioned that a coal plant is superfluous when you have a hydro plant. Scrap them and save a bit of pollution and gain a few coins. Get ecology quick as you can to get Mass Trans or be ready to do a lot of worker turns on cleanup. That is, if the game has a long ways to go. Your highest shields is 70 and other than the capitol, they lose some to pollution. This means, may as well water some tiles as you need two turns to build the good stuff anyway. 60 shields will let you two turn modern armor, so that enough.
Get ecology quick as you can to get Mass Trans or be ready to do a lot of worker turns on cleanup.

Good to see you around as always vmxa.

As a reminder, Shakespeare's Theater enables the city to grow beyond size 12, though maybe you never noticed AI cities that built it have higher population without a hospital. Size 13 cities produce pollution, and it gets worse the higher the city size. Shakespeare's Theater almost, if not always built in HoF games I believe, and I suspect for strong finishes in XOTM competitions. It produces a huge amount of culture and enables the city to produce several more shields if the city is not too coastal. The pollution cleanup can be, and has been for myself, a problem from the high middle ages on. What I do, since basically that city makes for what matters, lies in stacking dozens of workers in that city. Ultimately my approach is simple. Basically when I start Shakespeare's Theater I move all of my workers to that city and train more (maybe not precisely all, but close enough). I join as many as needed to get that city to the maximum size to produce as many shields as it can. And the rest will sit there waiting. Cleaning a mountain in one turn takes a lot of workers, but I think I've stacked that many workers into my 20k city once or twice. Is it 12 turns for one non-industrious worker to clean a flatland tile? 24 for a hill, and 36 for a mountain? I think the editor has that information.

I often don't have coal when I learn Steam Power. I sometimes even try gifting AIs and/or looking over their territory to see if anyone has two coal sources. Sometimes no iron also. If I do though, or if I can get both in a bit, then those workers stacked in the 20k city first rail all of the flatland tiles in it's fat X. Then the hill(s). Then the mountain(s). Then they will make a connected rail network starting from that city and go back to more regular work patterns.

Ecology provides nothing towards culture, and if there's enough workers in the 20k site throughout the industrial ages, I don't see how it's worth it for a 20k game. If I recall correctly, I definitely did deliberately learn it eventually in my histographic games and put in Mass Transit Centers. 10 or 20 turns of not having them is one thing. Having to clean pollution from 1000 AD to 2050 AD though is dozens, if not a few hundred more turns though. And pollution decreases happy citizens working and can cause starvation, both of which mean a lower score increase than if pollution had not occurred.

And selling off any coal plant is a good suggestion. I will try to cash rush one (if I have coal). Then when completing Hoover's Dam, I'll sell it.
Ecology is a good idea if you are looking to take over by domination/conquest and an absolute must for space race victory since a tech is locked behind it. For cultural victory, pollution has zero effect on your culture and thus Ecology would be unnecessary.

By the time Shakespeare is built you probably only have one more wonder from that age to build and should be on track to launch yourself into the Industrial Age. Once you're at the point that you are researching the last tech from the middle ages, every city that completes a project no matter what it is (except the 20k city) should be making a 1-2 turn worker. If you have to research steam power, those turns need to be spent making workers. Pollution is a nuisance, but can be controlled by mass making workers before you even have your first factory set up.

If you ever find yourself unable to clean up pollution in the same turn it shows up, then you need to continue mass making workers. The only time a city should starve due to pollution is if you had forgotten to move the citizen back after the workers cleaned (something I forget to do from time to time.)

Regarding whether or not to build the Art of War. I've begun to notice that the AI on Monarch difficulty (not sure about higher up) loves to make tons upon tons of regular units without building a barracks first. If I'm the one who builds AOW, I typically see regular units by my rival AI's up until even the Industrial Age.
If you ever find yourself unable to clean up pollution in the same turn it shows up, then you need to continue mass making workers.

I remember once or twice having pollution appear on consecutive turns around my 20k city. But, when it happened the workers couldn't make it to the 2nd turn pollution (I didn't have rails yet or would need an island invasion to get one or have to settle on some island other than my home one for coal or iron). Likely they were on opposite edges of the fat X, since it can be impossible to travel from some edge spots to some other edge spots of the fat X in a single turn with just roads.

I checked in the editor, and it's 24 turns to clear damage, and 12 turns to mine. That may seem strange. But, those number are correct, the government types have a "worker rate" number. It's 1 for Anarchy, 2 for Republic or Despotism, 3 for Democracy, and 4 for Fascism, and thus is consistent with the civilopedia (Fascism is 200% worker speed according to the civilopedia, which equals 4 / 2). It's thus, (24 / 2) = 12 turns to clear damage/clean pollution on flatland when running a Republic. The time for a worker to complete a job may get calculated by the movement cost, which is 2 for a hill, 2 for a forest, and 3 for a mountain.

If you have hills or have or natural forests, thus it's 24 workers to clean on a single turn, and 48 workers to clean pollution on consecutive turns if you have two hills on opposite edges of the fat cross.

If you have mountains, having a movement cost of 3, it's 36 workers. If you have mountains on opposite edges of the fat X planning to clean on consecutive turns, that's 72 workers.

Also, I saw an image of own my old games that was rather fast finish date wise, where I had a volcano on the edge of the fat X. It's nice for shields with good food bonuses. But, consecutive cleaning on two turns needs two worker stacks in such a situation in all cases if there is volcano pollution on the first turn.

I don't think I've ever had 72 or 48 workers in my capital or 2nd city ready to clean pollution immediately. I think I had 36 once or twice, and that seemed like it was good enough. I think I usually don't quite have enough workers to clean a mountain in a single turn.

Also, one or two turns of less production due to pollution getting cleaned one turn later might not change the finish date of the current build.

I don't know about having 72 workers standing ready to clean pollution instead of having some of them in cities or developing cities to help research through the industrial ages, or get better production for The Heroic Epic.
Also VMXA,

The 20k game takes the least amount of time, usually, of all game types. It's the easiest to keep focus on. You always know the most important thing to think about other than preventing loss. How is your 20k city doing on culture? How can it do better? How can it survive? And war can still be good. That Heroic Epic is superb for culture.
I know Shakes, rarely build it as it requires too many optional techs. Would slow down getting to the next age to research it. Can't steal it as I would not have spies.
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