A consistent Egypt strategy?

Discussion in 'Civ6 - Strategy & Tips' started by ShinigamiKenji, Dec 18, 2016.

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  1. ShinigamiKenji

    ShinigamiKenji King

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    I've been thinking about a strategy that might use all (or the strongest ones) the Egyptian uniques. Problem is, there seems to be no unifying theme.

    First, the gold bonus and the unique unit. Gold, in my opinion, is best used to buy units and support them. Given that the Chariot Archer is quite strong (stronger than Saka Horse Archer, and also with more range) but more expensive, the gold helps in buying them. It's also in the Ancient Era, which leans towards conquest. However, that also means fewer international trade routes for the bonuses, and even fewer incoming ones. It's also inconsistent given that internal trade routes are so important, and early on you will have limited trade routes. So, the gold bonus is self-defeating and inconsistent until much later in the game (when Chariot Archers are obsolete).

    Second, the production bonus for districts along a river. Overall ok, since they apply to wonders as well. So, Egypt is also leaning towards a Cultural Victory. The Sphinx also helps at it, since it gives culture as well, and since Culture usually leans to a more peaceful play, you'll probably have nice trade partners for gold. But that's all they get. Britain's and Kongo's bonuses outshines them by quite a stretch. You can't use Chariot Archers to steal Great Works since by that time no one will have Great Works at all.

    Sphinx also gives a little faith. But that pales in comparison with Russia's Lavras. Even Scythia's Kurgans seems better, because pasture adjacency is much easier than Wonder adjacency, especially early game.

    So, Egypt seems to be a jack-of-all-trades-master-of-none. How would you play Egypt? What path would be more efficient? Conquest, Gold-Culture or Religion?
     
  2. Halcyan2

    Halcyan2 Emperor

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    The timing doesn't matter. Even if they do have Great Works, in Civ VI you no longer steal them by taking the city. (In contrast to Civ V, where you could gain the Great Works by taking the city).

    The only way you get Great Works from other civilizations is if you trade for them (which could include part of a peace deal) or you steal them through espionage from a Theater District (unfortunately, you can't steal Great Works in the Palace, in a Holy District, or at a Wonder).

    If you want faith, you can always choose Desert Folklore as your Pantheon and get a lot of faith that way. Personally, I would prefer Lady of the Reeds and Marshes since you'll be wanting to settle next to lots of floodplains and oases anyway. You can get ridiculous growth and production that way with farmed floodplains that also provide a hammer.
     
  3. ShinigamiKenji

    ShinigamiKenji King

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    I could swear I once did it... But then, maybe I was mistaken, and I've deleted many of my old pre-patch saves to see again.

    But what would you do as Egypt? Go which direction with all the gold and production (and possibly faith)?

    It looks a lot like Civ V, with the Wonder bonus, the War Chariot and the Burial Tomb. Each unique required a different playstyle to make the most out of it (though usually one would go for the cultural victory due to Tradition + UA bonuses for Wonder construction)
     
  4. The Highwayman

    The Highwayman King

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    I've played one game with them and thought they were pretty good. I rushed my neighbor (Arabia) with the standard warriors and archers and backed them up with 3 Maryannu Chariot Archers. Took all 3 Arab cities and then took 2-3 German cities but left him alive. Starting any game with more cities seems the most efficient to me, and the Chariot Archer helps accomplish this, as well as being able to swiftly react defensively. I still had plenty of neighbors including Germany for trade routes. However, to your point, the internal ones are usually better for the food and production. You don't have to run all of them internationally, maybe 1-2 to get the extra gold to pay for some maintenance cost and utilize the rest internally for the valuable food and production.

    I disagree that Iteru and the Sphynx lean toward a culture victory. Certain districts (Comm Hub, Ind Zone, Campus, Neighborhoods, Aquaducts) and wonders, (Pyramids, Coliseum, Forbidden City, Ruhr Valley, Big Ben,etc.) help all victory conditions and can be built along rivers with some planning. I value culture in all game types as getting to certain civics is pivotal. I agree the Sphynx is totally inferior to the Lavra, but you could replace Lavra with so many other UI's and still have a true statement.

    High level:
    Chariot Archers helps take early cities and sweep map of barbs for strong start.
    Iteru builds all universally helpful districts and wonders and the VC specific ones along valuable river tiles.
    Trade route bonus isn't great but you will get passive gold from other civs and city states and you can use them situationaly to supplement your income. Some City State quests require trade routes so you may as well get +4 gold in the process.
    Sphynx isn't a great tile improvement but it has some uses. Maybe a natural wonder tile with a good food yield that doesn't need a farm? A Petra city in the desert to get 7 yield tiles? A super early Sphynx on a 2f 1p tile to help get you a critical early civic and pantheon? Maybe.

    That's how I play them. I suppose they are a jack of all trades but I kind of like that. They're not S or A tier but they're definitely not bottom tier like Norway.
     
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  5. ShinigamiKenji

    ShinigamiKenji King

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    Hmm, those are all good points. Perhaps the key for Egypt is that they're much more flexible than other Civs.

    Does Sphinx work with Natural Wonders? I thought only built Wonders counted. That makes them a bit better, though somewhat luck-based.

    I said that about CV because early wonders also help with tourism, and the only other ability that boosts their production is France's. That would mean that you have extra incentive to build them along rivers. But I see your point too, there are many other valuable ones too, and given that Egypt doesn't get other tourism bonuses, they don't seem that suitable for a CV. But having a little boost if all else fails is nice. Also, the little boost to culture helps with defending against a CV.

    Just one thing to point out: if you like to plan timing attacks, Egypt doesn't get the powerful Heavy Chariot > Knight attack, because Chariot Archers upgrade into the ranged line (can't remember if Crossbows or Field Cannons, though). You have to make do with Crossbows or Pikes (ugh). Or wait until Cavalry.
     
  6. The Highwayman

    The Highwayman King

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    I think Egypt is flexible to that point. A little off topic: I finished my first Russia game last night and they seem like a very good and flexible civ. Early Lavras mean you can be the first to a religion even on high difficulties. Extra GP points means early writers and artists for early culture and tourism. And the Cossack is a top tier UU.

    The Sphynx doesn't get the additional Faith boost next to a natural wonder like it does against a regular wonder. However the natural wonder yields are usually good enough to not necessarily need a different improvement, so I can justify it sometimes. I conquered a Chinese city with Petra and placed the Sphynx on all non hill desert tiles and it was pretty good.

    And yeah the Chariot Archer's lineage hurts its overall ranking among UUs in my opinion. Having a superior mobile unit upgrade to cross bows is a power down. And no option to upgrade to knights hurts any kind of timing pushes you may want to do on a very strong unit. Too bad. I think they should let you build regular Heavy Chariots with Egypt alongside the Chariot Archer to give a pre build Knight option. Heck, even Sumeria can mysteriously build them and they have a superior War Cart that Knight upgrades. I'm sure a civ balance patch will happen at some point and these types of things will be addressed.
     
  7. KmDubya

    KmDubya King

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    Egypt is good if you are trying to handicap yourself but didn't want to really gimp yourself by going with Norway.

    The Chariot Archers are way too expensive to build, let alone buy. Slightly better range damage from an archer that costs a fraction but still vulnerable to any sort of melee attack. If they had move after firing that's be something but they don't. Any attack that you do will be better served by using the cogs for normal archers rather than building the Chariot Archer.

    The Sphinx, like all unique tile improvements are pretty bad and not worth the builder charge, nor the population to work them.

    The 15% cheaper districts along rivers can be slightly useful but pursuing it can lead to building in non-optimal locations just to try and get something out of the ability.

    I find internal trade routes to be superior in pretty much every way compared to international other than getting a road for an invasion.

    Cleopatra as an AI is a fun, entertaining and occasionally annoying personality that makes her great to have in the game.
     
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  8. ShinigamiKenji

    ShinigamiKenji King

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    The only true vulnerability of Chariot Archers are Horsemen and Saka Horse Archers. It can outrun all other melee units. Also, their melee strength is 25, compared to Heavy Chariot's 28, and a ranged strength of 33. Also, they get 2 range and extra movement in open terrain.

    Though I really think that their cost should be dropped to about 100-120 production so they might compare to Saka Horse Archers in terms of usefulness. Less than 100 cogs and they become OP, since the Horseman cost 80.
     
  9. The Highwayman

    The Highwayman King

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    The OP asked how we play them and how to make their bonuses efficient, not how they pale in comparison to Scythia, Sumeria, Rome, Germany, or Russia. Listing only the negatives has no positive impact on the topic and doesn't answer the question. Of course the Sphynx is terrible versus the Unique Districts but how do you make it useful? How do you get around their deficiencies to to make something of them?
     
  10. greygamer

    greygamer Feudal Lord

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    Assuming a pangea map?
     
  11. ShakaKhan

    ShakaKhan King

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    As a generalization, I'd agree. However, an extra 4-yield is not too shabby, most trade routes have a total of 4 yield until way later in the game. Granted, gold is a less valuable yield than hammers, by about a 3:1 ratio, and probably less valuable than food by a lesser margin.

    Although, there are two city states that give suzerain bonuses that impact foreign trade routes. I believe one is Amsterdam which provides +1 gold for every luxury resource at a foreign destination and the other is Kumasi which gives +1 gold and +2 culture for every district in the origin city for trade routes sent to city states. If you're playing Egypt and have either of these CSs in the game and get suzerain status, it's' probably worth it. If both are in AND the Amsterdam bonus applies to city states (which I'd imagine it would; a city state should be considered a foreign destination...), meaning that you get all three bonuses, it would certainly be worth it.
     
  12. Tuvok694

    Tuvok694 Civ6 addict

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    I am not a good player generally, but there is no other civ in this game that I had less success with than Egypt.
    I've tried it DOZENS of times but never got anywhere remotely near winning anything.
     
  13. ShinigamiKenji

    ShinigamiKenji King

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    I really wish there were something like Zigzagzigal's guides to each Civ. We would have good strategies and tips and wouldn't need to read "This Civ sucks".
     
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  14. The Highwayman

    The Highwayman King

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    That sounds like fun. Maybe we can come up with a community guide to highlight each Civ's strengths. Acknowledgement of a Civ's faults is okay, but it should focus mostly on constructive ways to apply bonuses towards victory.
     
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  15. Machiavelli24

    Machiavelli24 Mod creator

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    Most of the ways you will use Egypt's bonuses will change based on what victory you are going for. For example, the Sphinx is useful for Religion, Domination and Tourism Victory but for different reasons.

    Egypt's production bonus for river side districts is always useful. It is common to settle along a river and have the first two districts be in a triangle formation along the river.

    Religion
    The Sphinx will give you the Faith you need to get the game winning mass of Missionaries. Its culture will also let you get the all important Theocracy sooner too.

    The desert start bias and ability to build on flood plains will make it easier to utilize Desert Folklore and have high Faith generation from your Holy Sites.

    Domination
    The Faith from the Sphinx can be used to support a Theocracy based Faith purchase timing attack. Egypt's unique unit can also be used to support an early game timing push.

    Tourism
    Egypt can use the river side production bonus to make it easier to get most Wonders. The Sphinx's culture will provide extra tourism and the drip of Faith can be used to get a National Park.
     
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  16. greenOak

    greenOak Warlord

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    I won my first immortal game (domination) with Egypt and thought they were pretty decent. Game went a lot like how The Highwayman described.

    I think I only built 2 chariot archers in the game, achieved an early rush with generic units. Didn't build a single sphinx until the game was already won. The discount on river districts I actually found to be the most useful bonus as it allows you to get your commercial hubs up faster and thus your trade routes, which you get a bonus on (international), running faster. While we're on the topic, I disagree that international trade routes are simply worse than internal trade routes - in almost all my games there is a point at which point I switch from running mostly internal trade routes to running mostly international trade routes. Essentially what I ended up doing was conquer a civ early, get trade routes up asap, build a campus or two for science, and a few industrial zones / encampments in high production cities, get a lot of gold (Big Ben was nice after stockpiling a lot of gold), build/buy an army, and proceed to conquest while using your massive gold output to upgrade and reinforce your army.
     
  17. Bluetooth

    Bluetooth King

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    In Civ 4 I almost always played Leaders with the Financial trait. It’s nothing like that in Civ 6 but Egypt and Cleopatra is as close I can come. Honestly, it’s the only reason I’ve played Egypt in almost every game. After the initial phase, I build up a strong economy so I can upgrade my Archers to Crossbowmen and Trade Routes are an important part of that.

    Chariot Archers are very expensive and when I can buy them I usually have a strong army and no need to buy more units. It all depends on your early strategy of course but that’s how I do it.

    + 15 % extra towards Districts and Wonders come in handy but honestly, it’s not that much.

    I built the Sphinx improvement in my first games but now I almost never build it anymore and the reason is that almost any other improvement is more important to build.

    Nevertheless, I’m happy with my choice, I have several domination victories from Prince up to Deity and a Religious Victory on King so I don’t complain.
     
  18. PeteBDawg

    PeteBDawg Chieftain

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    This is the wrong board for suggestions, but this got me thinking -

    I think the timing and balance on Egypt is a bit off. It seems like what Egypt should be able to do with its bonuses is settle on a bunch of flood plains, build a Sphinx with their first builder to get an early Panethon, pick Lady of the Reeds and Marshes to get extra production from flood plains, then be able to use the extra production to either build a fast Wonder or rush with chariot archers.

    This does not work for a few reasons:

    • The chariot archers are so expensive, so you lose a lot of the utility of an early-game unit by being unable to build them quickly enough.
    • Okay - but what about using them defensively? Well, they come at a decent timing for fighting with other civs, but unfortunately they are not fast enough to fight against barbarians, so you have to forego builders and build a bunch of cheaper units early on anyway.
    • You don't get Sphinxes until Craftsmanship, which you can boost from your first builder, but it uses the worker up so you can't build a Sphinx until you build your first worker, then finish Craftsmanship, then build your second worker.
    • The best way by far to get an early Pantheon is to find a faith-based city state or tribal village and even if you could do it at the start of the game a Sphinx would probably not compete with that.
    • The extra Sphinx yield only happens once you complete a wonder, and the time when you probably really want it is while you are building a wonder. Maybe the Sphinx could give its extra faith bonus if an adjacent wonder is under construction?
    • The 15% wonder-building bonus is not big enough for the relatively limited payoff of the early wonders that you can get quickly, balanced by the risk of somebody else chopping down a bunch of trees to get them.
    • In particular Egypt is not competitive with China for any wonders in the first third of the game.
    • You only have so many flood plain tiles, and it's weird to have bonuses on them that compete with each other so much - and also the whole "Flood Plain" vs. "Next to a River" which slightly overlaps but not really is a little confusing. Do you want to work flood plains for yield and put Sphinxes on them, do you want to farm them, or do you want to build Wonders on them, or do you want to build Districts on them?
    • All in all with bonuses for flood plains, we're only talking about maybe 6-8 tiles in your whole civilization in most games, and even that's a bit high. If you only get to cash out these bonuses a handful of times, they should probably be bigger bonuses - unless they underestimated how wide civs would be generally, or unless they already know what it will look like after the first expansion.
    Oh, and then there's the whole problem with Egypt having a bonus to building a wonder and to getting early faith from a tile improvement, but that niche in the game being covered by Stonehenge and Egypt not really being in a competitive position to build that, especially against high-level AI. And as such if you're not using your faith to get a Pantheon but are going to use it to spread a religion, then you don't really have time to build an early Wonder.

    And then there's just the whole question of whether yields and costs need to be tweaked in general in this game - like Egypt's gold bonus from trading doesn't feel like much, but part of that is that gold doesn't feel like much.

    It just feels like the pieces are there for a few smooth opening build paths for Egypt, but nothing quite fits, so none of them work.
     
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2016
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  19. ShinigamiKenji

    ShinigamiKenji King

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    I particularly liked greenOak's strategy, and here's a tweaked version of it. I still need to actually try it out.
    • Beeline Commercial Hubs
    • Build as many as you can next to rivers, using the +2 gold and the 15% production bonuses
    • Build many Trade Routes and use them internally at first
      • Optional: squeeze in a few Chariot Archers if you can (they deal ~35% more damage than Archers and are a bit more mobile)
    • When your core is developed and you conquered your neighbour(s), use some international Trade Routes and earn some gold (also, use the international trade route cards)
    • Profit.
    And as I said, if it cost ~110 cogs, Maryannu Chariot Archers would compare to the good UUs.
     
  20. Abraxis

    Abraxis

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    As far as consistency goes, I haven't found much over possibly the hundreds of ~100 turn starts I've played as Egypt so far (and a few full games). Usually the best thing for Egypt is very situational and dependant on the map, but I am finding myself very partial to looking for opportunities to rush Pyramids with them.

    On lower difficulties you can build any old wonder, but higher up this becomes a huge problem and leaves their sphinxes feeling like they're not worth the effort, since not only is there stiff competition to get a wonder, but you usually need to focus production on other things early on in order to expand via settlers or military just to keep from falling too far behind.

    The Pyramids are an exception to this problem, from a production stand-point, they're pretty much a free wonder. They replace the production time for a monument and a worker, both things you need to build early on anyways, they also give you an extra charge on your workers for chopping or harvesting resources so you can recover quickly from the production time. For other civs rushing it over just building a worker and monument isn't really worth it, but for Egypt with their sphinx adjacency it absolutely is. This holds up with the AI, the Pyramids along with the Hanging Gardens seem to go ignored for quite some time.
    I imagine this holds up in multiplayer as well since the opportunity afforded by rushing it for other civs really isn't there.
    Egypt also very often has stone or gypsum around making masonry a quick tech to rush for them. You might say "Stone? Stonehenge!" but there is way too much competition for that. Some other civ, usually grabs it by turn 27.

    The only real question I'm still struggling with is what to do with the Faith. The excess would seem to suggest getting a religion would be a good idea, but going for a wonder, even this one, on top of trying to get a religion makes you completely vulnerable to early rushes from either barbarians or AI. Maybe just saving it until you can faith buy an army with theocracy is best? It's always nice to have faith laying around to grab great people, but that's not really reliable for any consistent strategy either (though grabbing Marco Polo would be great). If you could somehow coax someone with Jesuit Education to spread their religion to you, that would make it pretty great too.

    Just for kicks, In my last game I made a triangle of three cities around the pyramids, 3 sphinxes and 3 theatre districts surrounding the wonder. Maybe not the most practical thing ever, but man did it satisfy so many neuroses, something i'll probably do again in the future whenever possible as it makes a great centerpiece to the empire.

    In my last culture victory game with Egypt I made a port city and focused all my trade from it, under the impression that the more money the city made, the more trade it would attract to make more money.

    It was more just to test the theory since the game was kind of in the bag already and I've been totally ignoring ports since the game's release.

    I only built it in the Industrial era, and by information era it was easily the highest grossing city in the game. Not just from the trade I sent out, but it was attracting AI traders from everywhere too, several from each civ. This also meant it attracted spies from the AI like crazy, trying to steal gold (and getting away with ~1500 when successful). I started keeping counterspies in the commercial district and I was catching enemy spies every other turn. Which meant easy training for my spies, who then took their three promotions and went out to steal all the great works and sabotage the Science victory leaders with impunity. It also meant almost every other turn I had a foreign spy to trade back to the AI for even more free stuff, or gift to them for goodwill.

    Next chance I get I'm going to start a game focusing entirely on making the best port trade hub in the world right from the start and see where that goes.

    Another little feature worth mentioning I'm fond of is using sphinxes in order to get early border expansion going on cities without having to wait the 30 turns or so for a monument to build.

    Edit: Another handy little piece of information I just discovered is that Chariot archers don't need Military tradition. This whole time I've been using the Maneuver policy thinking it produced them faster, it's Agoge which does this, the same one for melee and ranged units.
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2016
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