Discussion in 'Civ5 - Strategy & Tips' started by consentient, Mar 13, 2015.
Keshiks are always the right answer.
It was funny how everyone flipped out when they saw the 5% per city in Brave New World like if it was a game-breaking change. I guess hardly anyone ever realized Civ 4 did the very same thing!
Oh, don't you remember the glorious days when you founded a new city only to have its maintenance cost lower your commerce (read: science) per turn for a number of turns before the city gained enough population and improvements to pull its weight? I mean, how do I even ICS with this thing? Oh dang it, I guess I'm supposed to found only quality cities from now on and develop them. Well, good bye 4 pop tundra husks, I had so much fun maintaining you...
I've always said that the 5% penalty hurts the AI much more than it hurts the human player. In earlier versions of Civ 5 the only way for the AI to stay competitive was to found or conquer 30 crappy cities and brute force their way through the tech tree while accidentally launching a spaceship when they ran out of buildings to produce. Now every crappy city they found (and they sure do!) is actually hurting their science just a little bit, but those bits will add up to the point when the human player (who suffers the same penatly per city) is able to step in, take the lead and never give it back.
The side effect to the change was obvious, that the infamous ICS was officially declared dead. Boo hoo hoo! Most of the time, it wasn't even the most optimal thing to do, anyway. I watched MadDjinn's Deity Maya LP back in the day and while he ended up with an impressive amount of land his gold and science were in a pretty bad shape for the most part. And that was in G&K, where religious ICS was supposed to shine. And the Mayans were like the best civ to ICS with... madness!
Now each city you settle is an investment that is going to cost you and initially, but once the city grows it will pull its own weight and turn into a profit. Found quality cities in good locations and you shall be rewarded. How... amazing for the gameplay, when you think about it, actually.
As for the conquering - you still wanna do it in BNW, but for different reasons. You used to take cities from other civs merely to prevent them from getting stronger at no other cost than happiness (which they always seemed to have had in limitless supply). Now you're actually okay with them settling their crappy counter-productive cities everywhere. But of course you don't mind them "gifting" their capital to you, occasionally. The game does assign the best possible combination of tiles to capital locations, after all.
Okay so I finally read the whole list and I don't quite understand the low rating for France, at least compared to Brazil and Polyniesia. To me, these 3 civs are pretty much the same. They all have an insignificant melee UU, which doesn't really help in conquest, and the rest of their traits are all centered around generating extra and . Brazil has the obvious edge with their amazing UA, but again it only does matter when going for a CV; for other victory conditions you don't really care about your Tourism, do you?
Consentient, you make an argument that Chateaux are bad because if you build and work them early you sacrifice from farms and from mines. This is true, obviously, but it is also a bad play, in my opinion. Culture UIs are tricky in a way that they become available quite early, but you're not supposed to work them as soon as they become available. I find it's much more worthwhile to work farms and mines through most of the game and only switch to Chaetaux spam shortly before your final tech push towards the Internet, when all your cities already have Hotels (and Airports, if you went for those).
At this point, it is already turn 250+ and your cities don't need growth anymore, and they don't really need production either, since all your cultural stuff has already been build. And if you do a wide domination/culture game, like I often do, Chaetaux become really great. They give 3 each, multiplied further by National Visitor Center, the Internet and International Games.
They might not be as good as Brazil and Poly UIs, but they're still awesome for a CV. And even if your CV doesn't work out, and you need to bail out of the game, Chaetaux are still worthwhile. You can build them everywhere you would otherwise build a trading post (puppets, lowball cities founded only to gain resources) and work them. Sure puppets get a -25% penalty to culture, but that's still better than working lame Gold specialists. Rating Chateaux 0/5 just seems wrong.
Don’t do that! The core brilliance with consentient’s approach is ranking against The Neutrals. That mechanic really helps distinguish between civs that might feel pretty much the same.
Okay, yes, consentient scores Chateaux as 0/5 and obviously that is very harsh. Let’s say you scores Chateaux as 3/5. (That is pretty generous when you look at elements that scored 4/5 or 5/5.)
That would rank France with Polynesia (which you agree with) but still well below Brazil.
If you want to take consentient to task on the rankings, you can't make a case by being subjective, you have to attack each rating elements.
So, even if you are correct about Chateaux being decent, France is still objectively weak. This is why I stopped arguing about consentient dramatically under valuing Dromons. Worse case, any one civ is correct to within three points. You can quibble about some details, but in terms of the general picture, it is spot on! Moreover, I think I would only add a few points here and there, but not take any away. But adding a few points would only make the relative ranking more muddled.
I would rate Chateaux as 1/5 (the fact that they cannot be clumped means that not much tourism will be obtained from them); and yet working ONE or TWO midgame per city helps greatly with reaching 4th ring resources in your satellites, so you can grab that pesky aluminum for hydro plants or coal for your factories before your neighbors or CSs do, so they are not completely worthless.
The theming bonus however, I'd give at least 3/5.
It's pretty much the equivalent of "receive a free landmark or two in Paris"; out of all the theming wonders, the one that gives the biggest bonus, Louvre, is rarely taken due to exploration being a very unpopular tree among AIs. I can guarantee you can get the wonder 99% of the time if you beeline the tech and hammer a GE down; most of my games I tend to go for other techs first then hard-build it, simply because it's just sitting there waiting to be taken all game. So France's UA will give it an extra +8 with aesthetics finisher for a whopping +16. Throw in museum (+4), hermitage (+6) and Oxford (+4) and the UA gives +22 base tpt and cpt. A fully upgraded landmark with Freedom and WC proposal gives around 10-15 in comparison. The bonus also applies to whatever other wonders you can get. Sistine, if beelined, can be obtained around 50% of games, and you can almost always get Broadway (if you don't worry about not having faith for GM bombs).
In other words, the UA in my experience is the difference between having ~400-500 tpt typical of a Vanilla civ and taking 40 turns to win after maxing everything (and hence risk losing to a spaceship) and having 700 tpt with the extra boost and clearly winning. Consentient said "Doesn't really make it easier to win a CV, just gives a higher TPT." It's true that having 1400 tpt instead of 1000 tpt doesn't make it easier to win but going from 500 tpt to 700 tpt in most games is a HUGE difference.
While this approach is OK, it does overlook one aspect; synergy or discontinuity between different abilities (most of the time because these abilities affect different VCs so you cannot just add them up). Say in most cases 1+1 =2, but some cases 1+1 = 3 or 1+1 = 1.5.
For example: Arabia. Bazaar is rated 4/5 and Camels are 5/5. But if you add them are they really a 9? Hardly. Extra copies are great, and camels are great, but I don't think you're going to find that many customers when you are warmonger public enemy #1; in that case Bazaar just means you have 4 extra copies of your main lux sitting at home with absolutely nothing to do with them. And if you choose to play peaceful and trade with all 7 AIs on the map, then what use are camel archers except maybe for defending or being a military presence, dissuading attack from other civs? So 4+5 maybe = 7.
In contrast Babylon Free GS is 5, and GS spawn is also 5, but seriously I feel, 5+5 = 15 in this case (reach science slot techs /PT/Pisa faster) (doesn't really matter since they are God tier anyway)
Wide violent culture is my favourite strategy. But one of two things happens: I stop short of full domination purely because I want to win the game by another means, or keep playing for practise, etc....in which case, I've already won, so anything that happens afterwards cannot be considered 'making the win easier'. OR I cannot complete the domination sweep and am forced to go culture, in which case something that gives a bit of extra tourism cannot be said to make winning easier. If I'm not purposefully stopping the domination sweep, then it means there is a runaway, at least one. That runaway is likely to have a ton of culture. What makes overcoming them easier is tourism modifiers, not raw tourism, for the most part. Assuming they went for a different Ideology than me, then there isn't much I can do to change those modifiers except put a Diplomat in their capital. Trade routes are present or not, OB available or not (usually the latter if I've wiped out several civs), and I'm not gonna get to NVC/Internet any quicker without more GP or faith to buy them, or something that boosts science directly.
I had been considering bumping this to 1/5. I want a proper test. So let's lobby Acken for a DCL game with France in the near future.
You make a fair point, but all models have different weaknesses, and I opted for a relatively simple model, rather than an overly complicated one. Did you see the 'Shinier Tech tree' some guy posted a few weeks ago? Chap must have spent hours creating it, but for me it just made the whole thing really confusing. Simplicity is best, IMO.
If you are not at war with a civ, they will always give you 3 GPT for a lux if they have it, no matter how much they hate you. Maybe you don't know this because you aren't an appalling warmonger that ushers in new Dark Ages?
Yes, but this is exactly the point of this thread. People overlook conquest. IF you play purely peacefully, you're nerfing your game, unless your goal is SV as fast as possible. Speed of win is not the same as ease of winning. Let's say you open Tradition and turtle until Chivalry with Harun. Then you can double the size of your empire without pissing anyone off too much if you do it properly, and you have the happiness to support it, and our BPT goes through the roof. I'm more and more convinced Arabia are top 3.
I've seen it drop to 2gpt per lux. But I'm a REALLY appalling warmonger. I even had Attila liberate a city because he hated me so much. It's possible those were bugs. But I had been DoWing and taking cities and making peace and regifting every ten turns for 400 turns.... sooo I can understand.
I'm not gonna get drawn into a 'who's more appalling?' match but I'm a firm believer in razing, a bigger believer in wiping civs out completely, and I'll DoW just to kill settlers of civs that are trying to reestablish their selves. I've still managed to always get 3GPT.
But my point to KB was that if I have 5 spare lux, that's 15 GPT. Not nothing.
I agree with this that war is the most effective way, when i go science i always know id win by war a lot more quickly
However, a tech advantage is a military advantage so i still think babylon are great
I won't disagree with you on that; but, as you said, you get a terrible price then there has been something lost. If you had still gotten 7 gpt then 4+5 =9.
Here, you lose something out of one ability because you use the other one; so that's 4+5 =7, not 4+5 =5 (if, say, the abilities are completely mutually exclusive)...
Although... mind you, you cannot get any gold if all the civs band together to DoW you... (although with some diplomacy and bribes I'm sure you can manage to have a few trading partners... keyword being "few"... hence making bazaar's greatest strength greatly reduced in effectiveness)
Still, I'd give camels by themselves a 10, not a 5, so to me Arabia is still very much on top.
Yo Consentient, good thread but I cannot disagree more with this. Ethiopia is a top 6 wide civ (Egypt, Maya, China, Poland, Persia). The Stele is strong enough that you can completely ignore the Ethiopian UA and UU. 2 faith per monument is an insane bonus to wide play given that every city builds a monument first. I find it pretty difficult to imagine not getting a religion if you are at all trying, even without a faith pantheon. Would you take a pantheon bonus that simply read "+2 faith per city"? Of course, a pantheon like that would be reason enough on its own to go Liberty and spam cities. It would also be OP, which is why no such pantheon exists and why people rate Ethiopia so high (it's certainly not due to the UU or UA). With Ethiopia my default plan is to go for Holy Warriors and empty out as much space for cities of my own as I possibly can.
I also think you have underrated Egypt the most by far, this is easily a top tier civ. It's nearly as good as Maya IMO. Amazing UA, even on Deity there will be a wonder or two that is within your reach and worth building - Pyramids, Oracle, Eiffel Tower, Louvre, etc. Obviously this doesn't really make it safe to attempt wonders that were not really safe to attempt for "the neutrals" either, but that's not the point. This also shaves turns off of national wonders - faster NC is pretty nice. However it's the other uniques that are this civ's real strength. The UU - a spammable +1 movement chariot archer, very good. Now the UB, I have no idea why you have rated this only 2/5. This is one of the best UBs in the game, it's a maintenance-free Temple that also gives +2 happiness, that is just amazing and a big incentive to go wide. Finally, they have a very nice start bonus (avoid forest and jungle).
I also thought should mention this, re: Moroccan Kasbah...
It's obviously better to have an unemployed citizen (1) than work a blank desert tile, but Kasbah adds 1, 1, 1 to the tile (plus being a fortress)...making it still bad, but certainly better than an unemployed citizen. On desert hills however, they really shine. Mines add 1 (until Chemistry and/or Five-Year Plan), so, no, mines are not better, at least for most of the game. Farms are only better if you don't have other sources of food. Most tile improvements add either one food or one hammer, and no more - that's why salt is so good, because a mine adds one food and one hammer to salt. That's why civil service is so good, it gives you the ability to add two food to fresh water tiles. Kasbah is better, it adds a food and a hammer, plus a gold and a defensive bonus! The 'downside' is that you can only build it on desert, but still, on desert hills or flood plain this is really nice. I'm sorry but there's no way this can be a zero out of five! If you add Petra then it goes from really nice to absurdly good.
The Neutrals horseman won't really be comparably tough because it can't fortify and can't benefit from terrain bonuses to defense. Cataphracts do both, they really are quite good horsemen - they are actually more like 3-move swordsmen that require horses instead of iron and aren't off the tech path, which is actually quite nice, i always make a point to build a couple of these. They're not great or anything, but in no way should they subtract from Byzantium's score.
Self-built wide empires on Deity are just suboptimal, given the current state of the game. That's just a fact. While if you have a great map you could have 6-8 cities by T65 with Ethiopia, the Neutrals could have gone 3 city Construction and sweep in and take those self-built cities from you. These kinds of wide empires are rare, and when they are erected, they are vulnerable. A T60 from a Dido, Monty or Oda will tear it apart.
If I ignore them, then they have a UB which, even if I gave it 5/5 would mean their overall advantages were less than a huge number of civs on the list. The Stele does not make it easier to win. It makes it marginally easier to get a religion. But with the latest patch, all religions are gone before T60 maybe 80% of the time. Everyone goes Piety these days, it seems. Piety is the new Tradition for AI club.
No. Because that would result in less faith than a decent dirt pantheon, where you often have more than 2 faith per city. In the Korea liberty map that some of us are playing around with now, I took Earth Mother, self-founded 5 cities, and have a load of faith from that. It would be less if I just had Steles.
Spamming cities does not help to win on Deity, though, does it?
Using faith to buy units, use them to raze cities and then rebuild cities? Are you serious? Or am I misunderstanding you?
All the Wonders you mentioned can be easily gotten anyway. Getting them faster doesn't make winning easier.
Shaving turns does not mean easier wins. Aristocracy gives a Wonder bonus. If it was instead the Neutral's UA it would not make them top tier.
If they are the real strength, why not mention them first?
On flat terrain, for early rushes, I agree. But it doesn't upgrade well. Not all sweeps can be completed quick enough on Deity to make them a really effective UU.
Happiness is nice for a Wide empire, and it saves gold, but that doesn't really make it easier to win, does it? I don't struggle with happiness when I go for conquest.
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I'm not going over the Kasbah thing again. I already said everything I wanted to say about it a few times before.
The more I see posts and arguments along this line the more I think that the civs are somewhat more balanced than the devs mostly get credit for. There are a million unique ways to win with each civ, and whilst some might be faster than others, and some easier than others, I enjoy toying with the uniques of each civ to find if certain things make other play styles viable.
I'll argue that the Chateau is a brilliant UA for warmonger centric strategies. What is important to remember, is that not all warmongers burn everything and only keep capitals etc.
When I go to war I sometimes like to keep as many cities as possible and ride the happiness line, as demonstrated by the screenshots on my Arabia DCL game. I will generally leave the ai with one or two crappy cities where possible so that I can still run trade routes and also to get that precious 3gpt per lux from them. In that game, Napoleon was my first target, and I left him with only 1 out of the way city on the coast. Yet because I had the monopoly of the lion's share of luxes, as the game went on I was often getting 12, 15 or 18 gpt from him, let alone whichever other civs I wasn't currently at war with (usually only at war with 1-2, maybe 3 at any one time). That builds up, potentially to 60-100 gpt. Now I'm not trying to highlight the benefits of the bazaar etc. here, but merely showing how different play styles are viable under different conditions.
To get back on my topic though, this game highlighted the strength of the Chateau to me when I puppeted Naploeon's cities and "inherited" some chateaus. In my huge puppet empire, being able to build Chateaus would have been a huge boon. I prefer to think of Chateaus as a unique trading post. When viewed in that context I think their strength becomes apparent. In my opinion, used in this way, their strength in a war based game isn't the late game tourism, its the mid game culture. I would spam them wherever possible in puppet cities. Sure, later with all of the upgrades you might rather work +3 gold trading posts etc. but during the mid game, Chateaus are a substantial bonus over trading posts. The extra 6 culture per city (a 3 population puppet being encouraged to work 3 chateaus isn't unreasonable) can build up in a large puppet empire. even with 10 puppets that's 60 CPT (and remember puppets dont increase policy costs). In a warmonger game, that can more than double my current culture output when I don't want to spend turns building culture buildings or guilds. This would substantially increase the speed I would get through Rationalism or Commerce and even shows lingering effects once you get to your ideology.
I view the Chateau and the Aztec UA in a very similar light, with one exception; the Chateau allows you to sit on your gains and work towards a CV, SV or Diplo win.
I am not arguing that it is a necessarily cohesive UA, or that the entire French civ is great, just that if you gave the chateau to "the neutrals" (which arguably the French in this type of arrangement would be the equivalent of, city of lights being useless if you're not building wonders, although the musketeer is nice) that the rating would be 5/5. It may not be that in all circumstances, but to rate its effectiveness you have to look at where it's most effective.
It's certainly true founding 6-8 cities will incur the wrath of the AI every time, but you can actually have more units if every city goes stele->archer/chariot or vice-versa. If you mix a little tradition you can have Oligarchy by T65 too. There is no way that 3 cities can compete with 6 cities for early hammers. If you have defensible borders then you can withstand a DoW. If you are in the middle of the continent then it probably isn't going to work. You would need to achieve a defensible border first before beginning city spam.
The main reason self-founded wide empires are seen as "sub-optimal" is because the advantages they provide don't seem to outweigh the disadvantages, but religion goes a long way to rectifying that and city-spam is the best way to guarantee religion, and nobody gets more faith per city than Ethiopia.
ALL religions gone on T60 80% of the time? This is a bit of an exaggeration. How does an extra 2 faith per city make it only "marginally" easier to get a religion? It's double what a shrine provides and stacks with a shrine and is available from turn 0. Ethiopia should have more early FPT than any other civ. It does not guarantee a religion, no, but it does more to help than anything any other civ has. Even a desert start doesn't do anything to help you get desert folklore.
On Deity the AIs start with Pottery and you do not, so they can build a shrine and beat you to a pantheon nearly every time if they want to, unless you are Ethopia. Only Ethiopia can hope to compete with Deity AI for early faith generation, except by tremendous luck. AI starts with 2 settlers. Suppose they build shrines first in both city - if you build a stele, you are even with them and you have not even researched pottery.
Yes, it can, if you survive, you will have much more science, faith and production for the extra cities.
Yes, I am serious, lol. I am talking about conquering the continent and backfilling it with cities. I don't like where the AI places cities, usually, but I do not always raze them.
How does fewer turns spent building things you were going to build anyway not mean easier wins? How does it not make a cultural victory easier, for example, to spend less turns building those wonders and more turns building units? Egypt's bonus is bigger than Aristocracy and stacks with Aristocracy.
I was just mentioning them in the order the game presents them - UA, UU, UB. I mentioned the start bias also because I think Egypt has a very good one that has to be considered (compare with Sweden, Russia, and Aztecs, all of which are great civ that would move up a tier if they didn't have awful start bias), especially given the Egyptian UU.
You can certainly clear enough space to self-found a nice wide empire with no happiness problems (thanks to the UB) and usually a decently defensible border. It's true they don't upgrade that well, but many promotions still carry over.
2 happiness and -2 temple gold maintenance per city is not just nice, it is a reason to go very wide. There is wide play, and then there is wide play when each city has a 2 happiness maintenance free temple. You can make more cities, and more cities are better. This will give you a ton of production, more cities to eventually send food caravans back to the capital, more university slots to work (this more than counteracts the per-city tech cost increase), and a ton of faith to buy GS or GM with. You can either keep conquering or go for science or cultural victory. Unhappiness is the main disincentive to very wide play and the only reason ICS is not the dominant strategy in this game like every civ before it. The social policy cost increase is the second main disincentive. The per-city tech cost increase does not compare with the science that a properly-developed city, founded early enough, will generate. If you have a happiness-granting UB, and a little extra gold, and properly develop your cities (and especially if you get a religion), the only problem that remains are the AI players and they can be dealt with.
I very much agree. I have won Deity games with Byzantium and Venice and lost games with Poland and Babylon. So I think god tier vastly overstates it. For me, the biggest take-away of this exercise of comparing against The Neutrals really shows how close the civs are. The map RNG, not so much the starting dirt -- but who are my neighbors -- ends up outweighing my civ selection by at least an order of magnitude. And of course, player skill is on order of magnitude difference over map RNG. But of all the variables, civ selection is one that a player can control -- so the attention paid to it is quite understandable.
That's why the Shoshone are so powerful. Map luck and the RNG play a bigger role than anything else, and the Shoshone control some of the most important aspects of the RNG. Early game growth on just the right turn, free techs on just the right turn, free culture ASAP, free pantheon, free composite bowman... Imagine if any other civ was given all of those bonuses, let alone the equivalent of 2000+ gold in early border expansion value. People would be screaming from the rooftops about how over-powered it was, if they thought about it in the context of early-game snowball and how that affects the outcome.
On Deity, if you don't get a pantheon from a ruin, you probably won't get it at all. A guaranteed pantheon *alone* is incredibly valuable. Let alone 2 free techs, 2 free pop, and a guaranteed culture ruin...
Regarding the Chateaux, my reasoning is simply that it is not useless compared to regular tile improvements available to an average civ, as a 0/5 rating might suggest. It is the best land tile France can work in the last 40 or so turns of the game (not necessarily CV) because any population gained through food at this point isn't going to have enough time to be able to pay for the and lost by working farms, i.e city growth becomes pointless. Unless you want every last bit of science from population you should be switching your citizens off tiles, and if min-maxing for a single point of is so important, then why not min-max for also?
Winning a (mostly) peaceful CV on Deity with 0 bombs, just passive pressure of 1,6k tourism is possible.
Also let's not forget that it might also be worthwhile to work some Chateaux just to acquire new tiles, of all things. It might not seem like much but I feel like it might add up to a couple hundred gold per Chateaux. And if Polynesia gets props for never needing to buy tiles, then I demand justice!
I have to agree that science is overrated for Domination. For me personally it's mostly about production and gold. I want production to build stuff at a reasonable pace and I want gold to be able to buy stuff as soon as it is available. Science is nice when it happens but I don't feel like fixating on it too much. It just feels more natural to focus on infrastructure and units early and only then catch up once all the nasty stuff has been researched.
And even if I wanted too it's not like I can push my science super hard with Liberty or Honor opening! I see a lot of discussion about Babylon and how awesome they are because of the early Academy. Well, laugh at me, but if I went with the Babs the last thing on my mind would be getting super fast Education. I mean, what good are T80 Universities if my cities are size 5 and it takes 30 turns to build one. It only makes sense to research some military techs and go after those awesome foreign cities filled with population and buildings that the AI has done a much better job developing than I did.
I've already made it a habit to get Construction before Philosophy and go look for wars early with archers while my cities are busy with Libraries and stuff. I mean for all the I can possibly get there is simply not enough in cities early to take advantage of it. Getting Universities on turn 140 (blasphemy!) suddenly doesn't look so bad if I almost guaranteed that any city I take in war or peace deal is going to have one, AND enough population to staff the specialists immediately... those cities even come with a free Religion, without me spending half a dime. What's not to like?
Trying my first gambit at Machinery before National College or Universities on Deity. Its actually going quite smoothly for now. I've complete killed 3 Civs prior to turn 100 trying to get the other 2 (playing a Huge Continents game) Ill be set for the end game.
Moderator Action: Restored the threads as two separate threads. If I missed any posts, please send a PM.
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