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Aren't the apostles and missionaries most annoying units?

Discussion in 'Civ6 - General Discussions' started by gettingfat, Jun 21, 2017.

  1. gettingfat

    gettingfat Chieftain

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    I just played Germany in TSL earth at diety, with Norway and Alexander as my neighbors. One of my cities was right in between these two civs. As I have enough cities from archer rushing Poland and Spain, I'd like to turtle for a while to get my infrastructure and science up......Soon Norway DOW on me but I had a large number of archers and swordmen, and most important of all, I successfully founded a religion and got defender of the failth belief, so I easily took care of Norway's attack and captured one of his cities. Then the "friendly" Alexander declared surprise war on me. As my war weariness was a bit too high and I saw that Norway started to have knights, so I negotiated peace with Norway, got all of his gold and prepared to give Alexander a good lesson.... but as soon as the peace deal was made, the carpet of apostles and missionaries popped up like the weeds in my lawn. In the heat of battle they took several of my strategic locations so my "quantity beats quality" style defense system broke down as it was just too congested and many of my units had no place to retreat. The bigger nightmare happened when one of their apostles successfully sneaked through to eliminate the religion in this frontline city, so my juicy +10 bonus was suddenly gone! I eventually fought off Alexander, but more than half of my army evaporated because of these baxtards which I couldn't kill as the peace deal can't be voided.

    I really don't want to turn off the religion victory as I consider this a core element of the game, but this apostles and missionaries thing is just so poorly designed. Not just they use the same layer so they can block my military units, they become invulnerable after a peace deal, have more movement points than my archers and swordmen and can ignore zone of control. The AI civs also seem to have so many faith points to be able to purchase so many of them. The non-stop barb spawning is sometimes very annoying as well, but at least it makes a bit more sense than these army stopping super missionaries. If anybody have a good mod to fix this please suggest.
     
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  2. DizzKneeLand33

    DizzKneeLand33 Fall from Heaven 2 still rocks

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    Wasn't it your religion that was giving you the defensive bonus? Sounds like good AI play to me -- wait, did I just say that?? :lol:
     
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  3. stormerne

    stormerne is just a Retired Moderator

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    YMMV but I don't see this as poor design. On the contrary, I see this as great design! If I find something the AI does annoys me, or gets in my way, or makes it harder to carry out my strategy, then that's good and I need to learn to either copy, counter or ignore. These are the laws of this Civ6 world and if I don't like them I change game.

    By the way, switching off religious victory won't stop the influx of religious units. It just removes the victory condition. They'll still keep coming. All the uses of beliefs still have to be there and the AI will still use religious units as scouts and obstructions - as can you.

    So I go along with @DizzKneeLand33 - it sounds like good AI play to me. :)
     
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  4. ShakaKhan

    ShakaKhan Chieftain

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    In the example that you gave, settling a city between two aggressive neighbors, regardless of your relationship with them, is just asking for trouble, and you got it.

    As far as the problem with missionaries and apostles, I agree there's a problem here. I don't think it's so much about the problem of cancelling your bonus of Defender of the Faith, rather this is an example of how one of the stronger belief choices does have limitations - you need to maintain your religion in that city for the bonus to take effect, and losing it at the wrong time can be costly.

    The problem that I see with missionaries and apostles is the other aspect that you alluded to, they are roadblocks, they act like picks in basketball. Other units can't pass through them, and this is even more frustrating when you are trying to spread your religion and you can't get to a city because the AI just re-positions its units between turns and never allows a lane for your units to get through. They should make a mod that allows a military unit and a civilian unit from different owners to occupy the same tile if they are not at war, and if war is suddenly declared, you just teleport the civilian unit to another tile in much the same way that units are teleported to outside of a civilization's territory when war is suddenly declared.
     
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  5. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam Top Logic

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    What's the counter to truce-protected units that can ignore open borders rules and block units that should realistically be on a different layer in their own territory? How is a scenario where friendly nations on good terms screw each other over substantially via unit-block coherent design?

    If these units are allowed to ignore movement rules applicable to other units, they need to be on their own layer, both so that missionary pressure isn't blocked by a row of scouts and so that missionaries can't delay improvements and military operations in a nation's own territory.
     
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  6. Locke_Daemonfire

    Locke_Daemonfire Chieftain

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    You can attack them with your own religious units (inquisitors and apostles).
     
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  7. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam Top Logic

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    I was hoping to hear something that doesn't take a long time + further clutter own territory. Missionaries should not be a legitimate threat to military units when you're not at war.
     
  8. Sherlock

    Sherlock Just one more turn...

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    Is there a good youtube video or tutorial somewhere on how religion works in CIVI?

    I have no clue how it works and pretty much ignore it other than using my religious points to buy military units.
     
  9. Locke_Daemonfire

    Locke_Daemonfire Chieftain

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    Your own religious units don't clutter your own territory, since you can move military units on top of them. And yes, it does take some time, but it takes some time for the AI to build them and move them too. So the solution cannot be one that just wipes them out immediately. Their religious units aren't really a threat to military units anyway, just an annoyance. So it just sums up to being tedious, which is annoying but not game-breaking.

    I think the lazy solution may be to not make a religion. Usually I don't bother trying to get one. So the AI comes and converts, is happy and mostly goes away to play the religion game with someone who wants to play.
     
  10. gettingfat

    gettingfat Chieftain

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    If the AI really MEANT this I will be thrilled. Unfortunately that's not the case. It's just the side effect of a self-conflicting design in which a peaceful deal applies to the religious units to protect them but close border does not. Well, in reality North Korea not warring with the western countries doesn't mean North Korea is open to Christian/Catholic priests.

    Ironically, the only mistake I made was not surrounding this border city with 6 units to block that apostle. That's said, I was actually in a very bad mood seeing all these human road blocks congesting my battlefield so I wasn't playing careful.

    In my limited experience, switching off religious victory seems to reduce the incentive for the AI to found religion, build holy sites and generate faith, so these religious unit spamming is less frequent and often more reasonable. With the RV turned on, this spamming is often quite unreal. Using this game as an example, I still feel odd that the AI can have so many faith points to generate so many religious units. Before the peace deal I believe I have killed 4 Norway apostles already, and Norway has also spent a couple to get two bonus beliefs, a few to spread their religion, and after the peace deal 5 apostles and 2 missionaries popped up. Even it got Holy order so apostle/missionaries purchase has a 30% discount and is running theocracy, getting more than 10 apostles is still insane considering that it was only at 148th turn at epic speed and Norway has only 4 cities and 2 of them were newly built.

    Definitely.....I beg you....Mr. missionary can you please, please, please come off this forested hill, our archers need that defensive bonus and you don't. If I give you 10 gold coins can you just kindly walk away? We dare not touch you or else god will punish us...... so silly!

    Unfortunately, not founding a religion still won't stop the missionaries doing all these pick and roll thing on my archers and swordmen.
     
  11. kaspergm

    kaspergm Warlord

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    I agree AI can be somewhat over the top with its spam of religious units, but in most cases, there are good counters. If you have a religious neighbor, launching an inquisition should be a top priority for you. I often get the impression people undervalue this. Of course doing it is a faith investment (or a production investment, if you build the Mahabodhi temple, which is not necessarily as bad as people sometimes make it), but it will be a huge help in overcoming their religious attacks.

    The AI will have a big tendency to attack a religious unit sitting on a Holy Site, so place an Inquisitor (or an Apostle with the Debater promotion, if you're lucky to get one) on a strategically placed Holy Site and put him to sleep, and watch the AI suicide their religious units on him. Each time one of them dies, it will spread your religion and eliminate their own in a 10 tile radius. Just watch out for hostile Debater+Theocracy Apostles, they can be dangerous.

    Another strategy is to let them use a lot of charges to convert one of your cities close to their borders, and then use an Inquisitor charge to wipe their religion, and then let them do it all over again. This can keep them occupied for a long time and will usually drain their faith resources, at least for a while. Once the inquisition is launched, buying an Inquisitor is a relatively small faith investment, so this is most often manageable.

    And remember, (if you have a religion) Theocracy is a great all-round choice for government.
     
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  12. Zuizgond

    Zuizgond Chieftain

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    I think we should be able to kill religious units with military units without declaring war but triggering some negative diplomacy modifiers instead.
     
  13. gettingfat

    gettingfat Chieftain

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    This may be a bit too drastic. It will make religious victory nearly impossible.

    My suggestions are:

    • If you declare war, you can simply kill them, but it shouldn't change the faith level in the same manner you win a religious debate with an apostle or inquisitor
    • If it is peace time, you can use the dip screen to request the AI not to send in religious units. If the answer is no, you can use military to deport them. These units will be automatically sent back to the nearest holy site. This will incur negative dip rating in all leaders following this religion. It may also cause negative amenity in cities with the believers of this religion, so using religious units to counter remains the better way.
    • Each kill or deportation should be considered an attack. No more one horsemen killing three missionaries in one turn.
    • After enlightenment all these killing and deportation will be considered violation of religious freedom and incur additional dip penalties
    • Increase passive religious pressure
     
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  14. ShakaKhan

    ShakaKhan Chieftain

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    This is exactly how i feel now, but perhaps we should allow some time to see how we as players adapt to it over time. Remember the game is still less than a year old, and as time progresses and our strategies mature, we'll likely find ways of adapting to these rules, probably even ways for them to be advantageous. The way you stated, " friendly nations on good terms screw each other... ...different layer in their own territory" is exactly what WE did iin civ5 to block religious spread to our own cities. Now with CIv6 having religious victories (which were absent in civ5), unit-blocking religious units perhaps the only way for a non-religious player to block another civilizations religious victory. While this does involve a cheesy tactic, I don't think it's any more cheesy than declaring war and stepping on all their missionaries just to prevent the same outcome.
     
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  15. Ovidious

    Ovidious Chieftain

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    Now that I've played this game a bit, I kind of like the Apostles and Missionaries. To me it is a way to be at war with an annoying friend I guess, without going into an actual war.

    When I see the apostles come into my territory, I right away make as many apostles as I can to fight them. And when making my own, I sometimes get the +20 bonus which really helps beat them down. Fighting and destroying them in my own territory I do not think ever resulted in bad feelings from the AI that sent them. Only when I send my Apostles to convert their cities do I get the "stop doing that" response. At least this is what I have noticed thus far.

    Lately I taken the religious choices that: one - that creates a relic if my unit dies, and two - suffers no negative religious factions when mine die. I then use my units until they have one spread left, then go hunting all over the world for enemy apostles, missionaries, and inquisitors, just trying to wear my unit down until the enemy kills it. I think the AI is now avoiding my units (lol) as sometimes they are no where to be found. If I kill their unit, I see my religion increase in the nearby cities, and when they kill mine, instant relic.

    If you want to heal your units so far I have noticed the only way to do that is in one of my own Holy sites or right next to the holy site. Sometimes I may have a few charges left in a unit and I have to bring him all the way home to heal. There may be other ways but I have not learned of them yet as I am still a bit of a newbie to the religious part of the game.
     
  16. agonistes

    agonistes wants his subs under ice!

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    I'm torn on religious units.

    Right now I use the religious borders mod in most games. I think if religious war was a challenge, I might not, but once you are informed of the ins and outs of religious unit combat, it is simply tedious if you aren't trying for a religious victory.

    Personally I would like to see religion be more passive. Running projects exerts more and further pressure from a city. More prophets, which enhance holy cities. Apostles enhance holy sites. Maybe limit missionaries to 2 active at a time.
     
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  17. UWHabs

    UWHabs Warlord

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    If they could just move religious units to basically the same layer as you use for traders, that would go a long way. If you're at war, they won't auto-die, but you would still have to use move points to destroy them, like you do now with traders. They don't get in the way from other units, and it solves so much of the spam issues.

    I'm still not really a far of the theologic combat, since it still seems so weird and counter to a lot of the other parts of the game. I still think they would be better managed if you simply handled religion like you handle espionage, except maybe you spend faith to conduct each mission. Then it's off the main map entirely, and would be much easier to be able to ignore if you didn't want to focus on that part of the game.
     
  18. kaspergm

    kaspergm Warlord

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    I disagree with this. Having religious units not in their own layer was one of the most obvious mistakes of Civ5. Anyone who tried to play with the "No more civilian traffic jams" mod can attest to this. Transferring this mistake to Civ6 is downright stupid. Blocking religious units should not be your last-resort mechanism to stopping a religious victory. Your last-resort emergency break is DoW, just like it is with cultural victory and science victory. DoW is very effective to stop religious victory - more so than with the other victory types - because killing their proselytizers will not only halt their advance, it will actively set them back by applying negative pressure in a 10-hex radius around the target.

    I think what needs to be introduced is a different mechanism, which would be a state of "religious war". By this I mean not a normal war started on religious reasons, but a "war" between the religions, where they declare that they want to fight your religion with their religion. The fact that AI can just walk in an kill your religious units with their religious units - and spread their own religion, wiping out yours - without any diplomatic repercussions and any prior actions seems rather bizarre. Also we need some kind of unique open borders system to religious units plus the attrition mechanism from Civ5 needs to come back - so that if you declare their religious units unwelcome in your territory, they will lose power with time (unless they declare a religious war on you).
     
  19. isau

    isau Warlord

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    I'd like to see the religious combat system expanded in the expansion packs. It's an area that has some potential, but right now it's extremely literal minded.

    One idea I quite like is to allow Religious Units to use Stacks of Doom like in Civ 4. That would eliminate the clutter and make those combat mechanics far more interesting and differentiated from regular combat. Since Religious units must be purchased with Faith there is already a limiter on them. And stacking mechanics already exist in the game for Armies/Armadas.
     
  20. ShakaKhan

    ShakaKhan Chieftain

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    Agree to disagree then on unit-blocking. Again, my point was that we should allow some time to see how we feel about this a year or two from now. I also think placing 6 units around a city (or 3 or 4 and adjusting them) is no more cheesy than concluding, "I may lose this game to a religious victory so I'll just dow and eliminate 5,000 faith worth of apostles in one turn."

    I concur that a different mechanism to religion would be great. In doing so, I'd like to see religion grant abilities that make it more worthwhile. As is, most (many) of us just conclude that religion is not worth the initial investment to found, and certainly not worth the investment to spread and maintain, unless you're going for a religious victory (which is a big gamble at the highest levels.)They'd probably never do it because of political reasons, but it would be great if you could use religion (in conjunction with the espionage system) to interfere with a civilization you are at peace with, things like reducing tile output, disrupting production, or reducing population in a target city.
     
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