AI teching fast in late game?

prloko

Chieftain
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Aug 6, 2022
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I’m sure it has more to do on how I play, but I notice in my games, the later I go, the more one AI runs away tech wise (usually Suravyaman). I turn on no tech brokering which usually nerfs this somewhat, but still cant figure out how an AI with few cities can pump out so much tech. Any ideas?
 

georgjorge

Deity Wannabe
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Dec 14, 2009
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The AI get an additional bonus to research based on era (Classic, Medieval, Renaissance, Modern ...). I'm sure somebody can provide the exact values.

So yes, the AI does research faster in the modern era than the Renaissance. In Deity, even If I can compete up to the Renaissance, they run away afterwards - which is why I need to take their cities sooner.

Also, human players can keep up in tech with bulbing from great people, which loses its value at some point (need more GP points for less value).
 

georgjorge

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I did a little search as to the exact mechanism, and it's explained here:

This means that, besides the ridiculously decreased costs of everything for the AI at the start (60% of the player, compared to 80% on imm), AIs get a further 5% additive (I think) reduction every era they advance. This means that by the modern era, EVERY SINGLE THING is 35% cost for the AI compared to the human player. Techs, units, buidlings, all of it. To have AI civs essentially build and research 2-3 times as fast as a human player is such a gamebreaking advantage that they become near-unstoppable or unstoppable outright once they reach that point.
 

ArchGhost

Prince
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Aug 2, 2016
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The 5% per era bonus refers to research(tech cost reduction) only, and is the Deity value. On Immortal it's 4%, for instance. But yeah. the Ai actually just goes faster as the game goes on and they collect tech. They also get cost reductions for each player that knows a tech they are working on, and any time an AI + AI pairing meets the attitude and "# of players know this tech" thresholds for tech trading, they can (doesn't mean they will) randomly gift techs to each other for nothing. This is especially blatant with Master/Vassal pairings, where even the attitude threshold for the Master is ignored entirely (Masters can always gift tech, for free, to their vassal). The Ais are always conspiring to collect tech ever more quickly and they do it without you being able to see it happen in real time, only as a result after clicking next turn. Just one of the many, many ways the AIs don't play fair with the human. But that's alright, the human isn't ever bound to play fair with the AIs either:trouble: :devil:

Hammer handicaps are likewise adjusted by difficulty, but also don't seem to be universal across all units and buildings either. For instance, settlers are still pretty expensive for the AI even on Deity (91 or 92 hammers IIRC) yet they can produce an archer for 15 hammers, a 40% hammer cost handicap which is common for many builds. Of course this was probably done for balance reasons.
 

prloko

Chieftain
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Aug 6, 2022
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Thanks everyone! Helpful to know. I’ve played causally for 10 years, but lately I have been trying to up my game, and have been experimenting with different things like producing tech/gold in high hammer cities to see the effect vs just playing with the slider.
 

Kaitzilla

Lord Croissant
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The 5% per era bonus refers to research(tech cost reduction) only, and is the Deity value. On Immortal it's 4%, for instance. But yeah. the Ai actually just goes faster as the game goes on and they collect tech. They also get cost reductions for each player that knows a tech they are working on, and any time an AI + AI pairing meets the attitude and "# of players know this tech" thresholds for tech trading, they can (doesn't mean they will) randomly gift techs to each other for nothing. This is especially blatant with Master/Vassal pairings, where even the attitude threshold for the Master is ignored entirely (Masters can always gift tech, for free, to their vassal). The Ais are always conspiring to collect tech ever more quickly and they do it without you being able to see it happen in real time, only as a result after clicking next turn. Just one of the many, many ways the AIs don't play fair with the human. But that's alright, the human isn't ever bound to play fair with the AIs either:trouble: :devil:

Hammer handicaps are likewise adjusted by difficulty, but also don't seem to be universal across all units and buildings either. For instance, settlers are still pretty expensive for the AI even on Deity (91 or 92 hammers IIRC) yet they can produce an archer for 15 hammers, a 40% hammer cost handicap which is common for many builds. Of course this was probably done for balance reasons.
The AI per-era-bonus affects everything except the tech cost I think.


On a test game I used world builder to remove all AI techs, settle an AI capital city on ice, and forced them into Strike supporting 30 lions to go 1:science: per turn with 0% slider.
I infiltrated with a Great Spy to see what they were teching and then used world builder to force the AI from Ancient Era to Future Era by giving them knowledge of fusion.

The AI had not met any other AI yet, so no bonus tech speed that way. (Maxes out at +30% if everyone knows the tech and the AI has met everyone, but it might be a bit less if the human player is counted in the calcuation :hmm:)

A starter tech like Mining does not get +20% tech speed bonus from knowing a prerequisite tech.

Hunting is a 40:science: tech that costs 40*1.3 = 52:science: on a standard sized map on Noble difficulty.

For the human on Deity difficulty it costs 52*1.3 = 67.6 = 67:science:
For the AI on Deity difficulty it costs 52:science: because they don't have a 30% penalty like the human player. :)

Whether the AI is in the Modern Era or Ancient Era, it will still pay 52:science: to tech Hunting every time unless they met other AI that already have it.

The 30% tech cost penalty for the human on deity and the insane escalating bonuses that the AI get for units/food/buildings/upgrade costs every new Era is what makes them seem to tech so fast.
A size 1 city only needs 11:food: to reach Size 2 for Deity AI that know Fusion. Crazy.

List of Techs to advance to the next Era
Spoiler :
Ancient Era Techs
FISHING
HUNTING
MYSTICISM
MINING
PRIESTHOOD
THE WHEEL
AGRICULTURE
ARCHERY
MEDITATION
POTTERY
MASONRY
POLYTHEISM
SAILING
ANIMAL HUSBANDRY
MONOTHEISM
WRITING
BRONZE WORKING


Classical Era Techs
IRON WORKING
LITERATURE
HORSEBACK RIDING
MATHEMATICS
MONARCHY
DRAMA
AESTHETICS
ALPHABET
CONSTRUCTION
CODE OF LAWS
CALENDAR
COMPASS
CURRENCY
METAL CASTING


Medieval Era Techs
THEOLOGY
MUSIC
PAPER
OPTICS
FEUDALISM
BANKING
MACHINERY
CIVIL SERVICE
PHILOSOPHY
GUILDS
ENGINEERING
DIVINE RIGHT


Renaissance Era Techs
GUNPOWDER
LIBERALISM
ECONOMICS
CORPORATION
PRINTING PRESS
REPLACEABLE PARTS
NATIONALISM
EDUCATION
CHEMISTRY
MILITARY SCIENCE
MILITARY TRADITION
CONSTITUTION
ASTRONOMY
RIFLING
DEMOCRACY


Industrial Era Techs
FASCISM
SCIENTIFIC METHOD
COMMUNISM (Civ 4 code calls it UTOPIA :high5:)
STEEL
STEAM POWER
BIOLOGY
COMBUSTION
PHYSICS
ARTILLERY
MEDICINE
ELECTRICITY
RAILROAD
ASSEMBLY LINE
FISSION
INDUSTRIALISM


Modern Era Techs
MASS MEDIA
REFRIGERATION
ROCKETRY
FLIGHT
ADVANCED FLIGHT
ECOLOGY
RADIO
SATELLITES
SUPERCONDUCTORS
COMPUTERS
LASER
PLASTICS
COMPOSITES
FIBER OPTICS
ROBOTICS


Future Era Techs
GENETICS
STEALTH
FUSION
FUTURE TECH

 
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prloko

Chieftain
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Aug 6, 2022
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6
The 30% tech cost penalty for the human on deity and the insane escalating bonuses that the AI get for units/food/buildings/upgrade costs every new Era is what makes them seem to tech so fast.
Thanks Kaitzilla. With that, I’m assuming there is a strategy to be deployed to avoid trading techs to AIs that would advance their Era?
 

Kaitzilla

Lord Croissant
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Thanks Kaitzilla. With that, I’m assuming there is a strategy to be deployed to avoid trading techs to AIs that would advance their Era?

There is not too much strategy that revolves around the AI gaining an Era bonus.
Usually it is only 1 era, so a tech trade tends to be more advantageous to the player than the AI gaining a few more percent of bonuses.

However, I would not sell a modern era tech to a backwards AI for 50:gold: unless I didn't care at all that I was super charging them.


The one time the Era bonus hit me in the face like a brick was on an Emperor game.
AI get 85% unit costs at the start of the game, so Archers cost 25*0.85 = 21.25 = 21:hammers:
With 0 turns in a build, it takes 2 population for an AI to whip a 21:hammers: Archer.

I traded Literature to an AI bumping them into the Classical Era, and they got a 3% bonus to unit costs.
So with 0 turns in a build, it takes 1 population for an AI to whip a 25*0.85*0.97 = 20.61 = 20:hammers: Archer.
Sure enough, the Size 3 city became a Size 2 city with a shiny new Archer and my attack failed with 0.1hp left on that last Archer. :mad:

The Classical Era bonus matters to the AI on Emperor difficulty.
 
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