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ALC Game 18: Spain/Isabella

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Strategy & Tips' started by Sisiutil, Aug 31, 2007.

  1. Sisiutil

    Sisiutil All Leader Challenger

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    Round 5: 5 BC to 460 AD

    I tried to switch to Caste System at the start of the round, but I had just recently changed civics, so I had to wait one turn. Meanwhile, I figured I'd do a little whipping:



    I also whipped a Granary in Prague.

    On the very next turn, I was able to change civics:



    No, I wasn't able to run many merchant specialists, but I did run 1-2 in Barcelona for most of the round and that helped buoy up my research to a great extent.

    So Currency took 16 turns to finish, counting from the start of the round:



    The economy started its turnaround right away; I was able to raise the slider from 20% to 40% almost immediately, and gold from Liz and Pacal (my Buddhist bosom buddies--for now) allowed me to research at a deficit.

    I next started researching Compass. Why Compass? Well, from what everyone said in the pre-game thread, I gather one key to the Apostolic Palace win is to bee-line to Optics, get your Missionaries out to the other civs (at least one city, perhaps only that) and then have the diplomatic win vote. Besides, it didn't look like any of the other civs were going to go after Compass, so it would probably be good tech-trading fodder as well.

    My wandering Woodsman II Warrior spotted a barb city to the far southwest. Since several of my city-raiding units had nothing better to do, I sent them down there. Along the way, look what they spotted in the jungle:



    A barb spearman--yes, they do exist! This is the first time I've seen one. Looks like Elizabeth's Chariot was high-tailing it away from the thing.

    I didn't trade Currency for anything right away. I'm sharing the continent with two Financial civs, so I didn't want to help them out unless it was worthwhile. As it turned out, Pacal researched a couple of worthwhile techs, so I first traded him Currency for Maths:



    That, I reasoned, would help the chopping I was doing around Aachen to help build the Apostolic Palace. It also opened up the next tech I was able to obtain from Pacal, which you'll see shortly.

    That mini-stack of city raiders took out the barb city:



    It took them several turns to get there and back, but for 87 gold, a couple of XPs, and a free Worker, I figured it was worth it. I razed the city rather than keeping it. I was tempted, what with the gold, the corn, and the pigs, but it's just too far away for my beleaguered economy right now. No doubt Pacal will re-settle in the area. C'est la vie.

    Meanwhile, I got my next Great Prophet and sent him to Aachen to help with the economy:



    At round's end, it was pulling in 9 GPT, not great, but not bad. I can always spread Buddhism around later on. What should I use the next Great Prophet for? I figure there's really two possibilities--either the Church of the Nativity, or to help research Divine Right.

    Remember I said that Pacal researched another worthwhile tech?



    There, now I can build War Elephants! Not that I have yet. I'd like to get Horseback Riding for Stables first, but my power rating is dropping so that may take too long.

    Later in the round, the Apostolic Palace was finally 1 turn away from completion. It was time to change religions:



    So on the next turn...



    Now, I've spread Christianity to 3 out of my 5 cities. Pacal has it in one of his. Should I spread it to more of his cities, or leave it for now? As you can see, in spite of the religious change, he only dropped from "Friendly" to "Pleased":



    Liz dropped from "Pleased" to "Cautious"--a negative random event didn't help. Sitting Bull remained the same, of course, though it's interesting that he converted to Judaism. That means he's in contact with the Jewish civ(s). I sent a Galley to explore his land mass in hopes of finding everybody.

    The result of the AP election was an anti-climax:



    And while all that was going on, my intrepid little Galley did indeed find another civ, though not the founder of Judaism:



    So Brennus was distinctly unfriendly from the get-go. Worst of all, he wouldn't open his borders, so my Galley had to turn around and head all the way back to explore the continent in the other direction. Sheesh! Some people.

    If Brennus remains unfriendly, I'll have to use the gift-a-Caravel-with-a-Missionary trick with him, possibly more than once. The founder of Judaism remains a mystery for now.

    I finished Compass in 445 AD, just before I ended the round:



    No one wants to trade anything, period, so I'm holding onto it for now.

    Here is a look at the map of Spain as of the end of this round:




    No, no new cities, not even a Settler, though as you can see I'm building one in Barcelona, and I have an Archer fog-busting down near the horse/fish/ivory site.

    A state of the world post will follow.
     

    Attached Files:

  2. kniteowl

    kniteowl Pirate Captain :P

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    Compass and Expansive = Cheap Habours, You may want to build them in Barcelona and Madrid to increase income.

    You may also want to settle that Horse/Fish/Ivory City to Block Lizzy from any further eastward expansion.

    Hm you need at least 4 courthouses before you can move your Palace, you may want to delay Civil Service until you get your Palace completed at Aachen. Next tech to research will probably be MC as it opens up Machinery and Engineering for UB and also opens up Optics for Caravels.

    Although.... in my own experience none of my gifted Caravels with Missionaries had never successfully spread religion, I Wonder if it was bad luck or the AI doesn't know there's a Missionary into them.
     
  3. Sisiutil

    Sisiutil All Leader Challenger

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    The State of the World, 460 AD

    First off, here's another, bigger map, courtesy of your friendly neighbourhood flying camera:



    Brennus is that little bit of burnt orange border in the far northwest. My Galley, as I mentioned, is heading back from there since Brennus won't open his borders to me. I'll circle back around the NE corner of Sitting Bull's continent and go south from there, following wherever the coastline leads.

    And isn't it interesting that Sitting Bull founded a city on my continent, right next to Elizabeth's territory? I should send a Christian Missionary there, don't you think?

    That's a bigger question for the next round. Should I try to convert Pacal and Sitting Bull to Christianity, or should I just stick with the AP diplo win and only convert 1 city in each civ? I have a Christian Missionary heading down to Mayan territory, but Pacal already has one Christian city, so we need to decide on the approach here.

    Domestic Advisor:



    I want to get Christian Missionaries to Prague and Seville ASAP so that the OR bonus can help accelerate their builds. As I expand--I really think the focus of the next round should be REX--I plan to accompany each Settler with a protective unit and a Christian Missionary.

    Financial Advisor:



    I adjusted the slider for this screen so you could all see where I'm at in terms of the economy and research. +2 GPT at 60%; not bad, and that will get better as more of those Courthouses come on-line. I'm also going to move the Palace to Aachen after it finishes building a Christian Missionary. I'll consider renaming Aachen the next round--wasn't Salamanca the capital of Isabella's kingdom?

    Foreign Advisor, Relations:



    Sitting Bull asked for Code of Laws and I gave it to him, so he's Pleased. I figure that in Pacal and SB I've got my partners for triangle diplomacy for the early and mid-game; Liz will be a target, Brennus, a nuisance. In most games I would be trying like the devil to convert both SB and Pacal to Christianity, so like I said, that's one of the main decision points for the next round. Frankly, I think it would be fun to use the AP against heathens like Liz and Brennus.

    Diplomatic Advisor, "Glance":



    Active trades:



    Look at that--Sitting Bull is my biggest trading partner! Some of those trades will change in the next round. I anticipate gaining access to fish, for one thing, and corn as well. Then again, the others will also gain access to additional resources as they get Calendar.

    Resources:



    Liz had a 2 GPT trade deal with me that I cancelled when she had +1 GPT available, but then the AI pulled its annoying bait-and-switch on me. So I'm waiting for her to go back up to 3 GPT before she gets clams from me again.
    Info:



    Techs:



    The real competition here is Pacal, who I'm beginning to think of as a variation on Huayna Capac. So far he's been a good tech trading partner, but that could mean he'll become a monster later in the game if left unchecked. I don't want to keep trading techs with him, but he's the only one will to trade techs to me, and so far he's had good ones on offer. Sitting Bull is already woefully far behind, as he is in almost every game I've played where he pops up. Brennus is leveraging his size to keep up, while I don't think Liz has enough good land to take advantage of her Financial trait.

    Military Advisor:



    As you'll see shortly, I'll need to start building my military again shortly. I'm already in danger of starting to look like a pushover.

    Religion advisor:



    I think I should focus on getting all my cities converted to the new faith ASAP, then start sending Missionaries abroad. If we decide to go the convert-the heathens route, then I'll probably do my builds accordingly. Usually I alternate building/unit in the early and mid game, but in this game I may alternate building/unit/missionary.

    Power:



    I'm not doing too badly, but I'm in danger of falling behind if I don't remember to keep building units every now and then.

    Demographics:



    Nothing to write home about, at least not yet.

    Top 5 Cities/Wonders:



    Hmmm, yes, Pacal build the Statue of Zeus. That could be trouble, but not until much later, and maybe not at all. I'm just glad that Liz didn't build it.

    Espionage, with a focus on Pacal:



    Again, the Courthouses will help with this. I'd like to be able to see what Pacal and Liz are researching, hence the focus on them.

    The main decision points, I think, are as follows:
    • Expansion: Now that the economy is making a recovery (and yes, I'm going CE for the most part), I think expansion is in order. Should it be done peacefully, backfilling all those city sites we'd planned? There are still 7 of the sites we had planned available, for a total of 12 cities. Very respectable! Or should we expand through war, but going after Liz right away? Before you answer, remember that it's a lot easier to build and support a big army with 12 cities rather than 5.
    • Religion: Do I only convert 1 city in each civ and go for the AP diplo win, or do I try to go the more "honourable" route of converting allies and getting them to vote for me?
    • Research: In particular, the next Great Prophet, due in 27 turns or thereabouts out of Madrid. Should he help lightbulb DR, or should he build the Christian shrine? Should I keep on the beeline to Optics after CS, or hold off since it now looks very much like the other civs are within reach of Galleys? Machinery will enable Macemen, mind you.
      I don't think I'm going to get the Great Library in this game, and that's okay, but should I start worrying about generating Great Scientists somewhere and pursuing Liberalism?
    I myself am leaning towards peaceful expansion and conversion of both Sitting Bull and Pacal to Christianity. I can then leverage the AP against Liz and, potentially, against Brennus as well, to support my peaceful expansion in the next round. Defeating Charlemagne freed up a lot of territory for me, and I still haven't reaped all the benefits for that. And don't you think I should? It was hard work!
     
  4. Tyrael

    Tyrael ALC Lurker

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    A barb spearman? Shewhaaaaa...?? :wow::wow::wow:
    Seriously, did you edit the XML or something? Everyone knows barb spears are a myth, stop kidding around.

    On a more serious note, I think it's better if you land the missionary on your target's shores and just gift the missionary. It might take an extra turn or two, but at least they'll be less likely to send a Ship With A Missionary (TM) off to convert a neighboring Civ. Plus you get to keep the Caravel. ;)
     
  5. ParadigmShifter

    ParadigmShifter Random Nonsense Generator

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    I saw a barb spearman once in Warlords. And a barb Horse Archer (also once only).
     
  6. popejubal

    popejubal Emperor

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    You can't move into Brennus's borders during peacetime without Open Borders.

    ...who says you can't move into his borders. He's far enough away that there's no real danger of Brennus being a threat and you're not going to build up any War Weariness if you aren't actually engaging any of his units. As long as he doesn't have any Triremes nearby, I don't see any significant downside to declaring war on Brennus to more past him and see who his neighbors are. You might even get the Circumnavigation bonus if you move far enough and if Sitting Bull declares on him, you'll get a nice diplomacy bonus for shared conflict.

    You already have -4 for Trading With Worst Enemy and you're a different religion than Brennus. That difference of religion isn't going to change any time soon (probably never), so you're going to be enemies with Brennus for the entire game, so the extra -3 for declaring war shouldn't matter much.

    The only possible probem that I see is the -1 for "declaring war on our friend". I don't think that you get that penalty if you haven't met the other civs yet, but I don't know.
     
  7. madscientist

    madscientist RPC Supergenius

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    Not sure you realize but war elephants now need construction and horseback riding.
     
  8. slobberinbear

    slobberinbear Ursine Skald

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    Checked the save ... some thoughts.

    Expansion: My vote is peaceful expansion. All of your HRE conquest-cities need marketplaces to maximize the buddhist shrine, gold, and silver. If you're breakeven at 60% research, just think how much more money that will give you, allowing you to settle new cities with relative impunity. So I see one city pumping out settlers, one making military, and the others building missionaries and buildings until you get your 10-12 cities.

    Religion: Go for the "honorable" AP win. Or does ALC stand for "All Leaders Cheese"? :p

    The truth is that even if you can't pull it off, you'll be in a great position to expand militarily and win by domination with your AP "buddies" in tow. This will require a large commitment to building missionaries, so you may as well build as many of the holy shrines as possible and max out the benefit.

    One alternative strategy to win AP honorably: Vassalize everyone within striking distance, since your Vassals surely have to vote for you (I assume, not sure on this). This would let you spread the religion, get the shrine cash, do military stuff, and get rewarded with an earlier victory than domination, since you don't have to conquer every single enemy city. This idea means you invade + vassalize first, then convert 'em. If this is how vassal voting works, this is much safer than spreading the religion first, since under this method you can't get outvoted. This plan also dovetails with Isabella's religio-militant bent. :jesus:

    Someone check this. This sounds too good to be true. :)

    Research: If you go with the vassalize & convert method, you need all of the medieval military techs. So I vote for CS, Machinery, Engineering, Guilds, and of course Feudalism so you can be the Vassalizer (tm).
     
  9. Scarredroman

    Scarredroman Warlord

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    The advantage of a religious start is to build/whip temples monasteries missionaries libraries and granaries and courthouses and markets. That was thrown away going caste. Being religious you found religions not shrines at this stage of the game. It does not matter that Lizzy didn't get either Part nor SOZ. The economy is still stalled and the military is a joke. Pacal's playing turtle and Sisiutil did not REX down to him, which eliminating Lizzy would have set up. Pacal can now spread Christianity to his other cities and take control of the AP away from you.

    Burgos was the capital of Castille. Salamanca and Toledo were other important sites.

    You've traded away Theology before building the Sistine Chapel. You researched Compass. This seemed rather shortsighted to me. Still you must know what you're doing.
     
  10. mrwhite89

    mrwhite89 Bad Lieutenant

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    Sorry for a completely off-topic question, but I am not able to view any of the pictures uploaded by Sisiutil. There's always just a small gap where the pics should be. Anybody else having this problem. I'm using a rather new laptop with Vista, if that helps at all.
     
  11. slobberinbear

    slobberinbear Ursine Skald

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    Sisiutil is no stranger to the whip, friend, and won't hesitate to use it if the buildings are popping out too slow. Izzie is Spiritual and can always switch back to Slavery on a whim. Nothing was "thrown away," and this gives Spain a moneymaking (merchant) and culture war (artist) option.

    That's one way to play religious, a la the Spain on a Lake (tm) game. Here, we are trying to balance military, expansion, and economic needs while aiming for an AP victory, which is somewhat new.

    60% research is stalled? A short respite to get the economy cranked up will pay huge dividends when Spain goes to war in the Medieval period. Invading Elizabeth was simply not an option ... remember, Sisiutil was at 20-30% research with no currency ... he would have bankrupted himself to launch an ill-fated invasion without catapults. :spank:

    I don't think Pacal has converted to Christianity yet, but you raise a good point about his voting power.

    This isn't a huge wonder game as it's shaping up, and I don't see Izzy going for a Cultural Victory with the Sistine Chapel. Compass brings health and commerce, both good things. It was a legitimate choice.

    Sisiutil is nicely set up now to settle his part of the continent and ramp up for war with maces, trebs, and knights.
     
  12. pindicator

    pindicator Emperor

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    Sistine is with Music in BtS. I dont' think Sisiutil is too high on Hagia. Without marble and him being expansive he may as well just whip/build more workers.
     
  13. VoiceOfUnreason

    VoiceOfUnreason Deity

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    You've got an ad blocker of some sort running? Sisiutil's naming convention for images will get flagged by some "out of the box" filters.

    I run Adblock Plus on my machine, and disable it if I decide I want to see images he takes post Christum natum.
     
  14. Bast

    Bast Protector of Cats

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    I wonder who founded Judaism. It could be Pericles who goes for religions. Or Charlemagne as it looks like they have a big population.
     
  15. ParadigmShifter

    ParadigmShifter Random Nonsense Generator

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    I don't think Charlemagne's population is too big at the moment.
     
  16. TRJS

    TRJS Warlord

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    Good call.

    Although he may have some descendents still living in Spanish cities.
     
  17. Bast

    Bast Protector of Cats

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    :crazyeye: :crazyeye: :crazyeye:
     
  18. Azander

    Azander Fairy

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    This is exciting! Don't aim for the cheesy AP win.. my bf did this a week ago, and got himself a score of 50000+, even though he's not as good as me.. and I only have a highscore of 22.300... :(

    Long story short: It's too (ch)easy
     
  19. Scarredroman

    Scarredroman Warlord

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    No, Sisiutil would not have bankrupted himself attacking England. Nor would the attack have been ill-fated. No fireships scattering the Armada, this time. There's a school of thought that says run research at 0% or 100%. So 60% could be described as stalled. Research +75% is what the Gandhi ai manages with 5 religions and techs like mad. Sisiutil can still pull this out, but you, Slobberinbear and Winston Hughes, gave him dud advice.

    The time to whip was before the AP was completed. Every population point matters now.
     
  20. carl corey

    carl corey Deity

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    Huh, why run research at 0 or 100%? I honestly haven't seen that in most posted games; and we've seen strategies as different as Cottage economies, Specialist economies with either Merchants and Scientists, Trade Route economies and Wonder spam with settled Great People. In neither of those has someone gone to such extremes. And there's really no need of doing it to prevent rounding errors, since they got pretty much taken care of in Warlords.
     

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