Are watermills a waste of money?

Discussion in 'Civ5 - General Discussions' started by Seabastian Civ, Apr 20, 2013.

  1. guinsoo

    guinsoo Warlord

    Oct 7, 2007
    I guess I think about this way, at least in terms of the maintenance: If I were arranging that city's citizens, would I have them work 2 food and 1 production, or 2 gold? I mean, it's not even close... I'd pick 2 food 1 production over 5 gold probably. The 120 hammer cost is a bit of an entry barrier, which is why I prefer to purchase these and build Granaries, when possible.
  2. skallben

    skallben Diplomat

    Dec 5, 2005
    Cold Country in Europe
    Of course it pays for itself in the end but maybe what a worker/army unit could do in those turns surpass that? That is the question IMO and I cannot see when there is enough time to build them at the rate science presents you with new alternatives to build. To me, there always seem to be something better to build.
  3. Seabastian Civ

    Seabastian Civ King

    Sep 10, 2012
    The main thing dissuading me from building them early is that I'm usually saving gold to rushbuy a settler for my second or third city. Since I'm using hammers to build archers/other essential buildings (library, granary, shrine, etc.) and I don't want to lose turns of growth hardbuilding a settler, I find buying them is best. Losing 2 GPT in the early game can set back that rush-bought settler by several turns.
  4. joncnunn

    joncnunn Senior Java Wizard Moderator

    Mar 17, 2008
    For the capital:

    None of Shrine,Granary, nor Library will conflict as I won't have The Wheel yet. Same thing for the Archer & Settler for the second city and the NC. (The library in the second city is top of my list; much easier to find 400 gold than 900 gold and it would slow NC way too much to hand build the library in the second city)
    Settler for the 3rd city bought with cash shortly before NC completes and settled shortly thereafter.
    Archer for that city next built and then Water Mill. At some later point the settler for the 4th city will either be built or bought.

    2nd & future cities: Shrine first; then a count of local resources will be done to determine the order between Granary & Water Mill in cities that can build the Water Mill.
  5. Primadog

    Primadog Chieftain

    Apr 6, 2013
    75 Hammers, actually. It was buffed some years ago.
  6. Ninakoru

    Ninakoru A deity on Emperor

    Nov 14, 2002
    Madrid, Spain, Europe
    By the time you build it you can get two archers out.
    In early gameplay, 2 gold hits the pocket big time.
    In early gameplay, you have better options like building monument/library/srine/archer.
    In mid gameplay, still you have better options workshop / university / units.
    Most of the time I have something better to produce, unless I need to boost growth as much as possible.
  7. IkM

    IkM King

    Mar 30, 2013
    if there isn't available better buildings, I build it. but if there are better choices I skip it.
  8. Bibor

    Bibor Doomsday Machine

    Jun 6, 2004
    Zagreb, Croatia
    Watermills are very versatile. They can be treated as a building that provides 4 hammers (1 base, 3 from a citizen working a mine) or as a means to gtet your population up to 6 quickly. Or both.
  9. TPQ

    TPQ Cogito Ergo Civ

    Oct 1, 2010
    I wouldn't call them "essential". Libraries and Universities are what I'd call "essential", but most other buildings are optional.

    If I build windmills, I usually build them soon after the tech that unlocks them as they're mostly useful in the early-mid game and their benefit reduces relatively as the late game unfolds.

    If you're finding windmills maintenance cost to put you off of building them, your issue is probably more with your economy than anything else I'd guess.
  10. OwlRaider

    OwlRaider Chieftain

    Jan 19, 2013
    Watermills are great for any empire. For tall empires it allows you to grow tall faster, and unless you're playing an overly aggressive game you shouldn't be needing too many troops to keep your borders safe, so after a while there won't be much else to build anyway other than risky wonders. For wide empires the maintenance cost becomes insignificant since wide empires are usually drowning with gold thanks to all the luxuries they get and also from the puppet cities, and the extra food for small river cities helps you meet citizen thresholds for various religious beliefs. Either way, any building that adds food or hammers is worth it in my book, Watermill adds both so what's not to like?
  11. Ranos

    Ranos King

    Feb 6, 2002
    I think too many people focus on the maintenance of the watermill without realizing they completely ignore it in very similar situations.

    Going for culture vic? Build the monument (2 culture, 1 maint) then build the amphitheater (3 culture, 2 maint).

    Going for widespread religion? Build the shrine (1 faith, 1 maint) then build the temple (2 faith, 2 maint).

    Look at any other building line and it's always the same. Then you have the grainary (2 food, 1 maint) and the watermill (2 food, 1 hammer, 2 maint). Its the same exact progression without requiring the grainary first and yeah you get a hammer instead of an extra food.

    But just like the grainary, that 2 food means you can work another hill when you need production, work trade post or plantation when you need money or just grow faster if you want a higher pop.

    For me it depends on what I'm going for as to how high a priority it is. I always build them at some point early on though.

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