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A rethink on religion follower beliefs

Discussion in 'Civ5 - Strategy & Tips' started by Redaxe, Sep 2, 2014.

  1. Redaxe

    Redaxe Chieftain

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    So since I started Civ 5 Religions I've always been obsessed with getting the Religious Buildings; Pagoda's, Mosques, Monasteries, Cathedrals but especially Pagoda's - the 2 happiness, faith & Culture feels like a free Colosseum, Monument and Temple....

    Usually the reasons to choose Pagoda's is that the 2 faith, culture & happiness is superior to any other follower belief. But on thinking about this more I wonder if it is really as good as we assume it is.

    Typically to get you're 2 religious buildings, you need to get 2 Prophets and then you're in a rush to get as many buildings down before you reach the Renaissance era when faith costs increase 50%. There is already a risk here in that spending all your faith on buildings another religion can crowd you out.

    Regarding the faith from religious buildings, for example a Pagoda costs 200 faith for 2 faith, culture and happiness. Now lets say I decide to ignore faith buildings then I'm not going to miss the 2 faith, as currently it takes 100 turns for that Pagoda to return its investment or 150 turns in the renaissance.

    So that leaves just 2 culture and 2 happiness. But I can get 2 happiness and 2 culture from Religious Centre and Choral Music and that means I can then use all my faith on missionaries or a 3rd prophet to quickly convert other cities. If I pick a founder like Ceremonial Burial then arguably I may not even need Religious Centre for 2 happiness and I can pick something else like Religious Community for 15% production bonus. So there is plenty of flexibility here.

    Then there is also the option of taking the Pantheon 'Goddess of Love' which gives me 1 happiness per city (another option with Religious Community & Choral Music).

    I'm starting to think that maybe the Religious Buildings aren't necessarily as good as I think we hype them up to be. Chances are that Religious Centre and Choral Music will be in effect for your cities well before you can get Pagoda's in all of them assuming you can get Temple's up.

    And there is also the fact that you can pick 2 religious buildings convert an AI, who gets your buildings, then gets their own or another religion and you lose your founder benefit from them and you've essentially given them free culture/happiness and faith. So without religious buildings another Civ is only getting to benefit from your religion so long as they keep it.

    Has anyone else come to this conclusion?
     
  2. beetle

    beetle Chieftain

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    I like the religious buildings, but I don't think two of them is twice as powerful as one. I find that if I have two faith buildings, then I tend to have precious little faith left for anything else. Arguably, happiness is a great use of faith, but I miss the GP. I tend to favor mosques over the other two, just because they pay for their faith cost so quickly. I don't think you need to worry about building follower beliefs being used against you. The AIs have few happiness problems anyway.

    Lately, I have been picking Holy Warriors whenever I can, so that is a faith sink. It is also about the only follower belief that you have to worry about being used against you! But again, the AIs spam units like crazy anyway.
     
  3. Laurwin

    Laurwin Chieftain

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    Holy warriors just looks like a bad choice to me. Units are too expensive in faith cost. You even have to babysit missionaries because they're all so expensive faith-wise. Do the units faith cost stay the same throughout the game or does it get more expensive like missionaries/inquisitors etc...?

    Assuming a first religion, I think you should take itinerant preachers asap and focus on spreading it as fast as possible.

    Maybe even hedge that you dont upgrade religion asap, but use the second GP / fast missionary purchase to wipe out enemy pantheon and spread religion to his cities.
     
  4. beetle

    beetle Chieftain

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    I was quite skeptical about HW until I tried it for a few games. I hated the idea of “wasting” a follower belief on something that goes obsolete. But HW really helps buff up a weak point in my game (getting enough early units) and I really like it now. Yes, units get more expensive as the eras progress, but they're cheap for the first two, and after than, what you can get are not usually worth bothering with IMHO.
     
  5. TheGrumpyBuddha

    TheGrumpyBuddha Chieftain

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    I used to love Pagodas but now I don't take them unless I've got an excellent faith engine (Desert Folklore or a ton of faith from quarries or a NW) -- just takes too long to accumulate enough faith to buy them, I'd rather take +15% growth or +15% production and just use the faith for a Great Prophet later.
     
  6. joncnunn

    joncnunn Senior Java Wizard Moderator

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    For myself, a lot depends upon my pantheon belief as to what religious follower beliefs I want. And of course what's actually left is another as well.

    (AI tends to pick religious building follower beliefs fast, so the Pagoda might not be available if you are second to found a religion.)

    If I have Desert Faith or Dance of the Aurora I tend to prefer Pagoda as my first follower if still available. (I'd actually won't build them until I enhance but if I wait that long to pick it, it's unlikely to still be available.)

    I tend to only want Monasteries if the start has a lot of wine or incense, and even then I'll wait for second follower since I want something providing happiness as my first follower.

    If I'm thinking my faith output is on the low side, then I tend to prefer Religious Center as my first follower (2 happiness per city without a faith building) I almost always follow this up with Feed the World as my second follower (bonus for same building) if still available.

    An overarching theme of mine is pick something with happiness as the first follower belief that can be built in all self built cities.

    (I'm NOT fond of the Gardens one due to limited number of fresh water cities, (exception is Indonesia who can build their UB everywhere)

    I also never pick Swords to Plowshares since it turns off if any AI declares war on you.
     
  7. JeSuisNapoleon

    JeSuisNapoleon Chieftain

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    Anytime I can get a solid faith generating religion (like DF), I almost always go for one of the solid buildings (pagodas or Mosques). The power of these building early on (while they are cheap WRT faith cost) is really great. If you can get +40 fpt early on, its simple to get these early in your first 4 cities.

    Other sources of :) from religion are also very strong, but rely on you keeping *that* religion dominant in each city. That really tough sometimes. The Pagoda is there forever once built, but the peace garden comes and goes with religious pressure. Know what I mean?

    If you are able to get the buildings early, that's when they really do pay for themselves. Even after your converted to something else, the building is still there benefiting you.

    getting multiple religious buildings is something I never aim for, but will sometimes take advantage of when those cards land on the table, so to speak. If I am desperate for :), then getting one more mosque / pagoda can make a difference.

    Sacred sites strategies may also push you to want more religious buildings, obviously. I am not a big sacred sites advocate, because I rarely ever complete Piety to get the extra belief. Its nice when I get it from the AI though!
     
  8. tetley

    tetley Head tea leaf

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    I absolutely think everybody needs to re-think follower beliefs at some point. And the reason is that you can steal them from other religions. (By "steal" I mean to let them convert your cities, or annex a city with another religion, or buy/capture missionaries of another, or trade-route-convert on yourself).

    HW I love--as a stolen belief. I like the religious buildings if I settle the full 4 cities, but otherwise I like those (and Jesuits) stolen, too. Interfaith dialog can go either way: you can get some free science by stealing it, but you can get more science by picking it for yourself.

    Stealing (and interfaith dialog) make it easier to go piety and get two pantheons in all your cities.
     
  9. beetle

    beetle Chieftain

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    I really like borrowing the ability for religious buildings. Usually the AI religion is not good for anything else, so it feels like a two-fer. Many games, I will build foreign missionaries so that other cities can get those buildings.

    I keep a look out for opportunities to borrow HW, but has not happened for me yet. I would only use in a city with barracks, and those tend to too high population for my foreign missionaries technique. But Tetley is comfortable not founding, and I can't give that up!
     
  10. budweiser

    budweiser King of the Beers

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    I take this one a lot. The only time I wouldn't is if it was a domination game. Most other times, you can end the war after a few turns. Its good to stack this with Fertility Rites and Full Tradition.
     
  11. Mutineer

    Mutineer Chieftain

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    Many believes depends on what opener/finisher you take. Many automatically take title or some other money believe. But consider, if there are low fault, can be pilgrimage available?

    If you do cultural game or simply think you can easy spread religion to city states - then pilgrimage is your friend. But that mean you will not have early fault for religious buildings, so you might consider taking other stuff, like production, or happiness from temples, or even culture.

    People seems to be complaining about ai missionary spawn, but take pilgrimage and spread your religion early on and you will have infinite missionary spawn :)

    That is just one example.
     
  12. tetley

    tetley Head tea leaf

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    I don't know if everybody already does this, but click on your faith to bring up the religious advisor screen and click the Global Beliefs tab. There you should see what every religion's pantheon and follower belief is (and then some). You should know what those beliefs are. If the Buddhists have HW, then maybe you should DoW the Buddhists. If the city you puppet has 4 wines and their tiles show culture on them, then maybe you shouldn't be spreading them your religion with desert folklore.
     
  13. Vitruvius

    Vitruvius Chieftain

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    - Don't take Religious buildings and holy warriors if you don't have high faith income.
    - If you have aggressive religious AIs, take beliefs that focuses on Capital because it will take awhile to convert your satellite cities.
    - When in doubt, take production.
     
  14. zagosya

    zagosya Chieftain

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    for me the power of religious buildings is that you can always decide whether you want to buy them right now or save for great propher or smth else. Sometimes those 2 extra smily faces "for free" can come in handy so you don't stop growing.
     
  15. Vitruvius

    Vitruvius Chieftain

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    If you want smileys you can take shrine or temple happiness. If you don't have faith to buy religious buildings early you will end up paying tons of faith in later eras for them which you could better use for great people.
     
  16. zagosya

    zagosya Chieftain

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    I mean that there's difference between happiness right after you found religion or hard-build/buy for gold the corresponding building AND "controlled" happiness when couple of your cities are about to grow and you need those 7-9 turns of continuous growing. So you may choose to buy or not to buy those pagodas
     
  17. Vitruvius

    Vitruvius Chieftain

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    Not choosing to buy a religious building is like a waste of a religious belief. So the best return on investment is buying it as soon as possible when it is the cheapest.
     
  18. zagosya

    zagosya Chieftain

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    That's actually true, I forgot that they become more expensive in time. Maybe 'cause by that time I often have already bought 3-4 pagodas (I usually go tradition)
     
  19. tetley

    tetley Head tea leaf

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    More expensive--and less return on it. You make your faith back on those pagodas, along with some culture. But not if you're late with it.

    That +1 smiley/shrine vs. +2/temple is a tough call to make, I think.
     
  20. Redaxe

    Redaxe Chieftain

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    Interesting observation. See if you're going to Wonder whore (particuarly around the Medieval-Renaissance era where arguably some of the most powerful wonders in the game are located) you're military is going to suffer and other Civs will 'covet' your wonders.
    Holy Warriors arguably is a great option to create an effective military while your cities focus on Wonder building. I tend to think the most resourceful players will use Religion as a bonus system not necessarily just to make an existing strategy better but also to cover gaps/risks that their strategy might create.
     

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