1. We have added the ability to collapse/expand forum categories and widgets on forum home.
    Dismiss Notice
  2. Photobucket has changed its policy concerning hotlinking images and now requires an account with a $399.00 annual fee to allow hotlink. More information is available at: this link.
    Dismiss Notice
  3. All Civ avatars are brought back and available for selection in the Avatar Gallery! There are 945 avatars total.
    Dismiss Notice
  4. To make the site more secure, we have installed SSL certificates and enabled HTTPS for both the main site and forums.
    Dismiss Notice
  5. Civ6 is released! Order now! (Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon DE | Amazon FR)
    Dismiss Notice
  6. Dismiss Notice
  7. Forum account upgrades are available for ad-free browsing.
    Dismiss Notice

Automated workers are bad...why exactly?

Discussion in 'Civ5 - General Discussions' started by Gary4Civ, Jan 1, 2012.

  1. Gary4Civ

    Gary4Civ Chieftain

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2007
    Messages:
    50
    OK, I understand from the better players that they are not good.

    Could anyone please list some specific examples of what an automated worker does that is not good?

    That would help me out a ton.

    Many thanks!
     
  2. eris

    eris Chieftain

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2004
    Messages:
    623
    Location:
    On this forum
    Automated workers will develop tiles in a manner and order less than optimum for a given city, especially if you have ideas of what city tiles you want worked.

    Automated workers can be set to remove forests or not. If removing forest, they may remove more than you intend, they may remove more production capacity than you can afford. If you set them to not remove forest you lose the value of a well time strategic chop.

    The road building algorithm has problems. A blocked path can lead to more tiles than needed to connect to squares. Since it costs gold per turn, that un-needed expense is hateful to most of us. They will build long roads to connect cities that you intend to connect via harbors. More unwanted cost,

    Their worst habit is walking up to the border of a warzone to put in that one last section of road or something. Not only does it get captured, the AI tends to destroy them and you can't get them back.

    And then there is building roads to City States. I have to come to the conclusion that I never want my workers to fulfill that request.
     
  3. Gary4Civ

    Gary4Civ Chieftain

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2007
    Messages:
    50
    Thanks much for the specific examples. Now that you mention it I have seen them build roads poorly as you described.
     
  4. kk1000

    kk1000 Chieftain

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2011
    Messages:
    33
    Location:
    Greenwich, CT
    I might turn them on after the heavy lifting has been done though. After railroads and most tiles are improved, I may send them out only to improve the marginal tiles or newly acquired tiles.
     
  5. Derpy Hooves

    Derpy Hooves Grand Inquisitor

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2011
    Messages:
    325
    Location:
    Muffins!
    Never turn it on, if you have too many workers and know it would only make a marginal difference if you let them make specific improvements just kill them, you'll get back GPT and you won't have to deal with the incredibly dumb decisions they make. Once I get to railroad era I usually have enough new workers from conquering to let them do the constructing and then once again kill the whole lot.
     
  6. thadian

    thadian Kami of Awakened Dreamers

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2006
    Messages:
    2,288
    Location:
    Indiana, USA
    automated workers base priorities on numerical factors without the ability to consider situational ones. so if you have 2 resources - iron and spices - your automated worker might build 3 random roads then the plantation on spice then 2 trading posts - then demolish them and build farms over them and finally, go mine the iron.

    ok, so this is an extreme example, but when you have 5 cities and however many workers you have at this point, it is better to rest or delete them or add them to your army to use as pawns for a war. they will build what you might not need and give you maintenance cost increases when if you build your own improvements you might find you only need 8 road tiles for all of your cities + 5 total mines + 6 total farms + all trading posts for one city and the rest on specialists... so, control your workers and control your costs.
     
  7. Gary4Civ

    Gary4Civ Chieftain

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2007
    Messages:
    50
    Thanks again. It feels like a daunting task controlling all those workers but I have to accept your (collective) wisdom.

    Is there any kind of rule of thumb for how many workers you should have? Maybe based on number of cities, or...anything? It seems like the worker issue is the hardest part of Civ for me so far.
     
  8. Scarpa

    Scarpa Chieftain

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2010
    Messages:
    476
    About one per city is what I shoot for early on.

    Managing workers really isn't that hard, and when they finish their current task and pop back into the 'unit waiting for orders' queue it's a good time to assess your cities, take account of growth, figure out if you're optimally working tiles, etc.

    Generally I have a big list of things for them to do early on with pretty clear priorities based on my strategy. By mid-game I've managed to do all the most important things and get my road network up and then I start deleting them, leaving one or two for emergency use. Unless I'm warmongering, in which case I keep an army of workers right behind my real army to trading post everything after puppeting.
     
  9. King of Prussia

    King of Prussia Chieftain

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2011
    Messages:
    99
    I keep about 1 worker per City until after railroad. Then I will lower the number to 1 for every 3 cities or so. Depending how big my empire is.
     
  10. Gort

    Gort Chieftain

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2010
    Messages:
    1,489
    Whenever I turn automated workers on I just find them building trading posts on absolutely everything. This isn't what I like to happen.

    Ideally I'd like to be able to set up the AI myself - stuff like "IF LESS THAN TWO FOOD ON TILE BUILD FARM" or "IF NEXT TO RIVER BUILD FARM". Then I'd be okay with automation.
     
  11. Gary4Civ

    Gary4Civ Chieftain

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2007
    Messages:
    50
    Scarpa I just noticed your sig -

    "Why isn't there a brewery building? +2 happiness, -1 production. "

    Nice. What would the "Ganja Hut" do for Civs? :)
     
  12. Hammer Rabbi

    Hammer Rabbi Chieftain GOTM Staff

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2012
    Messages:
    4,459
    Location:
    USA
    in options you can choose to have automated workers NOT replace existing tiles. later in the game when you have chosen all the farms/lux/mines, etc. that you need you can automate them for dead tiles like desert and tundra and not worry about them replacing something. it took me a few games to know that was in the options menu, haha.
     
  13. apocalypse105

    apocalypse105 Chieftain

    Joined:
    May 17, 2011
    Messages:
    2,704
    They build way to many rouds and in the late game way to many railrouds you only need a few railrouds at you're production cities
     
  14. thadian

    thadian Kami of Awakened Dreamers

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2006
    Messages:
    2,288
    Location:
    Indiana, USA
    i keep one per city, and about 3 cities early. if i build up to 5 cities then my first 3 workers suffice unless i have a lot of improvements i need to build.

    if i don't get around to workers until later, then i try to get 4-5 or so, but i always intend for any worker number over 3 to be sacrificed as a combat pawn. the AI likes attacking workers so i send in a few when im at war. if im defending, many AI will chase a worker all over the map instead of attacking me and if im attacking i can pull defenders with workers.

    when i capture enemy workers, i IMMEDIATELY delete them asap so that the unit is absolutely gone. i do the same in mp.

    late game, with a one-track road system you can convert 5 cities worth roads into railroads pretty quickly with 3 workers or so. if i stagnate at my third city which usually happens, then i get my 3 workers and every time i capture an AI city, i puppet it then i send in 3 workers to re-develop their plots and REMOVE ROADS I DO NOT NEED OR WANT which saves me money. then, if i want to annex it, i already have a correctly improved city even if no buildings.

    those same 3 workers will go to every city, one at a time with my army to build roads ahead of or behind my troops so that when i capture a city i can have it connected pretty quickly. if i find my empire has nothing real for 3 workers to do then i go to war - if i find my empire has too much for 3 workers to do, i slow down everything and focus on defensive building.

    if you monitor the pace of how much work is left in your territory for your workers to do on a basis of 1 worker per city, then you can estimate if you are advancing at a viable pace.

    Hammer - the button does not say "build smart improvements in places where they operate on a min/max basis and appropriately consider how many farms/trade posts/specialists a city will WANT to work given its location, size and room for growth. a city might be intended to be size 12 with 4 farms, 6 posts, 2 scientists for example. but the AI doesn't know how to think like that, it doesn't look at a city and have the worker specialize it. now, if you could tell a worker to specialize one type of improvement -

    or tell a worker "automate luxeries/strategic resources only" or "build one-lane roads to connect cities only" that would fix it well.
     

Share This Page