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Advice for playing a non-warmonger

Discussion in 'Strategy Section' started by dragof2, Jan 3, 2021.

  1. dragof2

    dragof2 Chieftain

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    I've been trying to play Korea for a science victory on king. After a few different practice runs (including a continents game where ocean travel heralded every nation-1 declaring war on me, especially those on other continents. I think because I was getting wonders and didn't have a big military.)
    But I got one run that went really well. I got set up with several good cities, expanded into several mountain chokepoints to fortify, and had several city state buffers. I had an early war with songhai as apart of a larger coalition to stop their warmongering. I grabbed a forward settled city and the Zulu took the 2 chinese cities that the Songhai had eaten. Afterwards I mostly sat back and garnered city states and boomed my tech. By modern age I was about an era ahead of everyone, and I had just recently done a successful war with Russia to my north after they citadel bombed me.
    While I was doing that, the Zulu ate every other faction but Russia, Songhai, and me. They had conquered most of the Pangea I was playing on, but I had chokepoints, an era tech lead (they were fusiliers and field guns against machine guns, infantry, and artillery) and they had a full -50% warmonger penalty. So unfortunately while I anticipated that they'd have enough troops to fight every front with a huge horde simultaneously, I didn't anticipate that miscellaneous bonuses would give them 70-100% bonus to each troop on top of terrain, special bonuses, ect. Even with my tech lead they had higher quality troops than I did, and they had about 8 times as many (that I could see). I'm quite sure that this game is a loss, but I don't know what to do in future ones. I had played a mongol game and a Songhai game on prince, and they were almost insultingly easy, and more importantly were basically over by turn 120 (with higher tech and culture than what I've ever gotten with Korea by that turn) so I couldn't get close to the interesting late game.
    It feels like the warmonger civs are just flat out completely superior to any other kind, especially with how much the culture trees let them boom science and culture by just spamming units and fighting. Is there anything important to keep in mind about dealing with warmongers when you aren't playing one? I'm assuming I'm missing something, because event though I know the strength of domination victories has been a thing in every civ game, this is even worse than the base game. I like the mod, and I like the late game (hence why I don't like playing warmongers, because they don't have a late game), but this is really flooring me.
     
  2. LifeOfBrian

    LifeOfBrian Prince

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    I've been playing a lot of games on Deity with the explicit purpose of going for a peaceful victory and I've been pulling it off quite often, even with warmongers in the game. The key points for me:
    - settling in defensive positions
    - getting a religion
    - staying very close to the supply cap limit
    - going for tradition or progress, artistry, rationalism and order
    That's it, basically. If your cities are settled in very defensive positions and you have plenty of army, with religion to help you keep afloat and then to buy great scientists, you'll usually be able to withstand any warmongering runaway with the exception of a warmonger that has basically conquered everyone else.

    Can you share some screenshots of your latest game so we can offer more specific advice on how to improve?
     
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  3. Stalker0

    Stalker0 Baller Magnus

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    Citadels are the key. A properly manned citadel (strong defensive unit + medic to heal it + road for quick swap when it gets wounded) is all but invincible if played correctly. Forts can serve this in a lesser but still strong capacity.
     
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  4. dragof2

    dragof2 Chieftain

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    20210103191635_1.jpg 20210103191730_1.jpg 20210103191749_1.jpg I did go and check more thoroughly. I had forgotten that the Zulu unique promotions gives ranged resistance, which does at least partially explain why artillery/cities were doing no damage to them (edit: I checked again, and that is wrong. Not sure where I found that information about their promotions.) I also think guides I've read rather oversell how good the logistics on cannons/artillery is. The malus they get to attacking non cities is a problem. That said, I'm still not sure how to leverage science into military sustainability.
    Also when I was going through a second time to put off the Zulu war until they attacked me/I had more troops, Russia attacked me.
     
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2021
  5. LifeOfBrian

    LifeOfBrian Prince

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    Dragof, how many units do you have in total and what's your supply cap? What are your religious beliefs?
     
  6. dragof2

    dragof2 Chieftain

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    I have 27 out of a supply cap of 50. I have the goddess of springtime (I started with quite a few plantation resources nearby.), The Apostolic Palace (to both supplement golden ages and boom the population of my capital), creativity (there may have been better one, but I was having a problem of not being able to get wonders because my culture wasn't fast enough to unlock them when my science researched them), Divine Teachings (Lets me pick up science buildings fast), Mastery (more GA and specialist efficiency), and symbolism (to better boom gp in my super capital).

    Also, I went and played some Zulu to try to get a feel for the gap between prince and king difficulty, and any weaknesses in the Zulu playstyle. I noticed that sometimes enemy units would have miscellaneous bonuses/terrain bonuses of 40-50%, even when it was something like a skirmisher with no promotions on flat ground. I could see the anti-warmonger bonus seperately, so it wasn't that. I initially assumed it was the difficulty, but it seems to only pop up sometimes, and the unit will just be inexplicably hard to kill. The AI Zulu I was fighting definitely had promotions, but he did still tend to have total misc bonuses of 100%. Is this something to do with the difficulty/ai bonuses?
     
  7. LifeOfBrian

    LifeOfBrian Prince

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    Dragof, in your position I would have tried to have at least 42-45 units with that cap, that would probably deter Russia from declaring war on you and would have helped you be more prepared for the Zulu invasion, I think 27 is way too low. Also, I see in your screenshot that Seoul doesn't have Armory built, so that concerns me for two reasons: 1.) any armory not built is one fewer unit smaller supply and 2.) any unit you build there is less promoted than it could have been. I usually have my capital churning out units, so I make sure to build barracks/armory/military academy there, and later on in all the other cities to increase my supply. Also, it seems like you don't have castles/arsenals built everywhere, so that's a bit of concern as well. I probably wouldn't have captured Tondibi in the first place, its position is very bad for defending, I'd fall back and try to use the mountains/hills to aid my defenses. I'd also try not to be allies with Malacca, I'd prefer them being Zulu's allies and clogging up the movement of their troops to Malacca falling in one or two turns to the Zulus and them having a clear path for their troops. I'll often intentionally try not to ally a "buffer" CS.

    With so many citizens in Seoul and so much food surplus, I'd try to put all the citizens working non-awesome tiles (such as coastal) to specialists slots instead, especially considering Korea's UA.

    Which other founders were still available when you founded, can you go back and check? I think Symbolism is good for Korea as is Mastery, but generally I'd recommend at least one religious building as a follower, for example Mandirs to give you more food and prevent your GPs getting assassinated or Mosques to synergize with Golden Ages. I wouldn't pick Divine Teachings as Korea because you'll always have lots of science as it is. Which other reformation beliefs were available, can you go back and check?
     
  8. Stalker0

    Stalker0 Baller Magnus

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    I've reported a few instances with skirmishers, I truly do feel there is a bug in their combat calculations somewhere. So I would ignore them for comparison purposes.
     
  9. dragof2

    dragof2 Chieftain

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    The bit about units is good to know. I was somewhat worried about both the industrial and financial problems of having a standing army that large, but with the Zulu as they were I should have just eaten the cost. In terms of religions I believe I mostly had my pick of beliefs, so your advice about buildings and other beliefs is really helpful. This had been my first time playing to late game in vox populi. At least from what I can tell the main benefit to massive science isn't as militarily focused as the base game. It seems to benefit all your national sectors fairly substantially. Which in turn means I shouldn't have assumed it would take care of military protection by itself.

    In terms of city states, as irritating as that is, I think you are very right. Early on they seem pretty good for providing raiding on another front, but their science doesn't keep up at all. And that's not even getting into the pathfinding. I think you're also right about Tondibi. I think I was planning on using it as a staging area for any attacks on other nations, but the Zulu never pushed far enough into the Songhai to have a border with them until the end of the game.

    The armory being delayed was just because my capital was so busy building wonders and yield boosting infrastructure that I very rarely had time to make unit there. My heroic epic was actually in Busan.

    Thank you so much for the advice though, I think I'm starting to get the hang of some of this stuff.
     
  10. stii

    stii Prince

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    They do seem to die if anyone so much as looks at them.
     
  11. azum4roll

    azum4roll Emperor

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    If you're having troubles figuring out where those combat bonuses on enemies come from, I recommend using the Promotion Flags mod. And then start reporting bugs on Github when you find promotion descriptions not matching the combat prediction screen.

    I'd also recommend Improved City View (don't use the Steam version) for easier specialist handling.

    Taking any science belief is overkill for Korea. You want production, gold and culture that Korea usually lacks. Golden Ages give percentage bonuses on production and culture, so that's synergy too.
     
  12. LifeOfBrian

    LifeOfBrian Prince

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    Dragof, thanks for the kind words&detailed reply.

    Since you had the pick of beliefs, I strongly urge you to take Divine Inheritance next time (goes great with tradition and GA-focused civs) or, failing that, the founder that gives the city bonuses when WLTKD, those are great founders to have even if you won't be spreading a lot or if you let your other cities lose your religion. Until the current religion system changes, it's quite hard to keep your religion going in your cities, so take a look at this post - https://forums.civfanatics.com/thre...ecember-1st-12-1.665131/page-24#post-15992881 - to see how I handle religion.

    Yeah, I know what you mean, but you really have to focus on building or buying enough units, even at the cost of not getting all the wonders that you'd usually get. Also, I like rushing Banking so I can quickly build banks in all my cities and then I usually spend a lot of my money investing, so I'd recommend you try to rush Banking next time, unless you have a good chance at Chichen Itza or if you need to rush Gunpowder (you usually don't have to rush because you can defend against most warmongers that have tercios/cannons with medieval era type of units).

    Conquering cities is really expensive, in diplomatic terms, in military terms and in the costs of science/culture/unhappiness, so make sure you really weigh the pros and cons before embarking on a crusade.

    Oh, and Hwachas are extremely powerful, in my opinion the best unit in the game, both for defense and offense, so make sure you build/buy plenty of them.

    Ok, that's it for now, if you want more advice, I'd be happy to give it, perhaps it'd be best if you post some more screenshots so we can help you more. But you're doing great and it's nice to see you be open to advice, so keep up the good work, man, and you'll continue to improve!
     
  13. dragof2

    dragof2 Chieftain

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    I would appreciate some advice on how you use your Hwachas, they do alright as a sort of super crossbowmen (albeit one that moves very slowly in enemy territory), but I tend to have problems with really leveraging them meaningfully. They do speed up taking out cities, but usually if I'm in a position to where I'm able to bombard a city down with artillery then its only a matter of time before I take it.

    Also, playing on the Communitas map (since it's interesting, and it seems to have a much lower chance of giving me a near unworkable start), I've been having an issue of at about turn 220 every single nation in the game declares war on me. Both the Maya and the Zulu had conquered an entire civilization, but it looked like everyone was more bothered by my wonder gathering, tech lead, and small army (I was keeping it at the supply limit, but they were definitely outnumbered by the more numerous factions around me). I had enough troops/ships in both numbers and quality to fend them all off, but the problem is that they just keep declaring wars. I just lost a city state that supplied most of my iron (I had almost no iron that I could access without going through another civ's capital, and this one had 8 iron), because denmark has a continent to itself and apparently no interest in anything but attacking me. Is there any way to avoid this happening? I had just finished with a Zulu conquest game, and I had less issues with factions ganging up on me when I was going full raging conquest from turn 50.
     
  14. Stalker0

    Stalker0 Baller Magnus

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    For me, Hwachas are much better served as a defensive unit. Korea's strength is in outsciencing everyone, so generally enemies need to come to you to stop the snowball. Hwachas in the right place just decimate invading forces, giving you much needed defensive protection.
     
  15. azum4roll

    azum4roll Emperor

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    Yet, having Logisitics at the start actually discourages you from going Field, the defensive promotion tree.
     
  16. Stalker0

    Stalker0 Baller Magnus

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    Why?

    Just because promotion can lead to other things doesn't mean I have to use them. going field for more damage to units is perfectly fine.
     
  17. LifeOfBrian

    LifeOfBrian Prince

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  18. dragof2

    dragof2 Chieftain

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    It does kind of sound like peaceful victory conditions are what you do when you either want to handicap yourself, or you're stalemated militarily. As far as I can tell a warmonger has to do less fighting, because they are actually aiming to wipe people out, rather than weaken them so you can fight them again when they attack you again in 30 turns. Not to mention that warmonger seems to be by far the most effective path for an ai, so if you're not doing World Conquest, then one of them could just start absorbing their neighbors without much response from other ai.
     
  19. Heinz_Guderian

    Heinz_Guderian Warlord

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    Yup warmongering is much easier than playing peacefully imo
     
  20. LifeOfBrian

    LifeOfBrian Prince

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    That's why I recommend, when playing a game with the intention of going warmongering, to manually select your opponents so that they'll be the best possible (for example Songhai and Sweden) and that you don't pick a good warmongering civ, but rather a weak one for a warmongering game, to kind of offset the relative decrease in difficulty from playing offensively.
     

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