Always War

Discussion in 'Civ4 - General Discussions' started by Orion Pax, Oct 3, 2021.

  1. Orion Pax

    Orion Pax Warlord

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    So what are folks’ experiences with Always War? Tips? Preferred maps, etc.? First time I tried it I thought it would be everyone at war with each other - a free for all. But no, it’s just you vs. all, lol. :wow:

    Thoughts?
     
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  2. lymond

    lymond Rise Up! (Phoenix Style!) Moderator Hall of Fame Staff

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    1)Pangaea or any flat map
    2) Unrestricted leaders can be fun to pair some traits with UUs. Like Church of Mali for some uber Skirms. Skirms are a nice unit for choking, with a quick cheap tech and quick builds. (some guerilla promo line on some skirms or archers are nice for movement)
    3) Choke your nearest neighbors to nerf them badly and slow their expansion. An archer or woody II warrior can help with that. Try to prevent strat hookups
    4) First warrior should kill scouts an animals to get to Woody II asap for worker stealing and choking. (He can eventually become your supermedic, but also with Woody III and free upgrade to an Axe he can kill a lot of units in forests)
    5) For expansion, focus on settling on hills in a perimeter around your cap. You want these cities to take the focus on any attacks so that the cap can be built up nicely with cottages. Most of your research output will be from your cap
    6) Avoid scouting too far. Just find you close by city spots and focus on nerfing neighbors. Delay in meeting more AIs prevents them from entering war mode that much sooner.
    7) Eventually once you establish your base and have a strat resource you can start really establishing an offensive army to take the fight to you neighbors, who should be in pretty bad shape but probably have a lot of units in their cities.
    8) Beeline construction.

    The AIs farther away will be stronger, but once you take out your neighbors you should be in really good shape.
     
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  3. AcaMetis

    AcaMetis Emperor

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    Limited "experience", if it can be called such, but in no particular order:
    • Hub mapscripts are easy mode for AW games, in theory, since you've got a guaranteed chokepoint leading to your mainland and it'll take a hot minute for AIs to find/send troops over to you. Of course beware naval invasions, insofar that the AI accomplishes those things. Where Hub maps get hard is the fact that the AIs do start relatively far away from you - being unable to choke AIs early on can spell death on higher difficulties.
    • Don't overestimate the value of PRO. You'd think it's AW: The Trait, but if anything it's even weaker relative to other traits in AW. The issue is that without any trade routes or...any trades in general, really, you're basically playing No Tech Trading as AI Toku in a permanent six-front war while the rest of the world is stuck in an endless lovefest because of shared war bonuses. To say that your empire management needs to be on point to not fall behind (and, thus, die) in an understatement.
    • The best defence is a good offence. And the best enemy is a dead enemy.
    • Turn on No Tech Trading if you're not a masochist. AW is enough of a handicap by itself, rest assured.
    • Don't rely exclusively on Longbows, train up some Crossbows with CG and other promotions to upgrade to Machine Guns later. Machine Guns normally can't take such promotions, and for good reason, but Longbows can't upgrade into MGs.
     
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  4. Rusten

    Rusten Deity

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    I don't play much SP anymore, but when I do I enjoy AW the most.

    I prefer maps where some AIs are hidden away somewhere* -- it results in a more balanced and interesting game through the ages with both land and naval combat. The problem with playing maps like Pangea (at least on deity) is that you either win or lose the game in the starting phase by setting up some sort of chokepoint and meatgrinder. If some AIs are unaffected by war and racing through the tech tree on a different continent it forces you to play more dynamically. It also means you can improve your empire in a more normal manner as you don't need to put all resources into setting up and maintaining said chokepoint. I find it more interesting to balance tech and soldiers this way.

    *Medium&Small or Hemispheres for instance, which results in an (unpredictable) mix of rivals that border you by land, by coast or requiring Astronomy.
     
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  5. Qactus

    Qactus Romani ite domum

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    I find open land too stressful but chokepoint maps such as Hub or Wheel too unnatural.

    Thus, when I play AW I choose flat mapscripts, where I can gradually push the frontline(s) forward and enjoy a safe rear area in a corner of the map.
    That means for example:
    Inland Sea: expanding two frontlines around the ocean (usually I advance only one frontline and just defend the other side).
    Great Plains: Reroll until you see hills/peaks (this means you're in the west), defend and expand from there.
    Rainforest: Can be frightening at first, but the AI are bad at handling jungle. Often features mountain ridges as natural borders. A generous start is important (but easy to roll) that features enough tiles for two additional cities to work before having to deal with jungle.

    Regarding units I second the point that crossbows are awesome. Mounted units are also very important, ideally starting with Horse Archers. On these, the sentry promotion is valuable: AI often move their stacks in stupid ways and you can often catch poorly escorted siege before they reach your cities.

    One tip regarding Unrestricted Leaders: It is awesome because there are a myriad combinations to try, for example combining interesting UUs with strong traits. But I was always put off because for some reason I can not stand unrestricted AI leaders. I don't know why, AI for me have to be normal. So I just check the Unrestricted leaders option and then handpick the 6 opponents, specifying the leader and the corresponding Civ. That way it is only me playing a weird combination.
     
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  6. jmas

    jmas I Can Has Imperium?

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    I am curious, what combinations do you enjoy / find interesting?
     

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