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Bombardment and Siege Weps

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Strategy & Tips' started by Teelman, Jul 5, 2009.

  1. Teelman

    Teelman Warlord

    Joined:
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    Hello all,

    I have a question relating to bombardment and seige weapons. I have read several posts/posters that have stated they almost never bombard defenses and always just suicide 3 to 4 siege on a city then attack. Is this the normal practice? Since, I have started playing I had always bombarded defenses down to 0% then suicided my siege and attacked. Do must of you advanced players only suicide the siege?
     
  2. fed1943

    fed1943 Emperor

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    Well,I'm not an advanced player, but I try to put defenses off.
    Not obligatory 0%; let's say it is 10% and I have 4 cats, then probably I'll go conquest immediately,
    suicide the cats.
    It depends on the numbers of units and the hurry to put the civ out of the game, to vassalize, to
    make peace, to get something, or whatever.
    Best regards,
     
  3. UncleJJ

    UncleJJ Deity

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    Location:
    London
    No.

    Occassionally against a weak defence (say 20%), but it's almost never required if you plan the attack. If possible, I bring enough seige to reduce the defences and weaken the defenders the same turn and then attack the city. Only when facing castles with trebuchets and catapults is this difficult to do and you have to wait one or two turns while the 100% defence is reduced. Depending on the quality of the defenders it is usually more efficient (in terms of hammers and war weariness) to reduce defences and then attack even if it takes an extra turn.
     
  4. Yared

    Yared That Guy

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    it depends on how many defenders compared to my attackers n if my units are more advanced than theirs or not

    If I have Riflemen n I'm attacking other Riflemen fortified in a city, I suicide my sieges.

    If half of my troops are on their way n the rest of my troops are camping outside the city, I just bombard 'till they get there n then I'll suicide my sieges.

    If I have lots of Infantry n I'm attacking Riflemen :)mischief:), I don't suicide my siege. Of course, in this scenario, I'm probably using my airships against the enemy so I haven't brought my siege.
     
  5. SteveNick

    SteveNick Chieftain

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    It usually just depends on what I think is a manageable loss. If the bombardment will take multiple turns and I'll only lose one unit when attacking without bombardment, I'll go ahead and attack usually. I don't think you should ever just suicide your catapults without bombarding. You will lose all of your catapults and more of your units than you would have.

    A lot of times, if I'm attacking a city that doesn't have many defenders, but has a high defense bonus, I'll bombard it, but not suicide the catapults because I'd rather not lose them. It's all about managing your losses. If you can lose one swordsman or two catapults, which would you rather lose? Usually I'm always waiting on catapults to build and travel anyways, and catapults are important for taking over cities, so I'd rather just let them bombard, sacrifice a standard unit or two taking the city, and keep my catapults for another battle. Obviously if you're going up against a massive stack, you suicide the catapults.

    In other words, I try to make my units cost effective while still moving through battles in a reasonable time span.
     
  6. Babibo

    Babibo Immortal

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    Location:
    France
    A good war is a short war. Although Sun Tzu didn't state this in these terms (by the way he didn't speak english), that's how you should think when planning your war. Minimizing your losses during each battle is certainly important, but you should consider that the AI builds units while you're taking time to remove defenses. You should not be afraid to lose some of your units if it can save some critical turns.

    During early wars, it is ok to bombard, since defenses are mostly cultural and 2 to 3 catapults can remove them. During medieval wars, however, don't even bother to. And during late wars, forget about siege, and use cavalries or tanks. They're much faster. Planes are nice too, provided your opponent doesn't have anti-air weapons.
     
  7. StrategeryBush

    StrategeryBush Warlord

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    I'll Second this sentiment; however, we need to add that it is more important to preserve your forces early in the war, so that you don't get slowed by a lack of firepower.

    I play on normal speed, so time really is of the essence. This often means that I need to get the campaign going before I have the perfect SOD constructed, so a little early force preservation helps keep me from getting bogged down on the second or third city, and taking my time on the initial assaults gives me time to get reinforcements to the front while the front is still close to home. In the later stages of the war the philosophy generally turns to "damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead," since by that point the war weariness is almost as costly in terms of production as the losses, particularly losses of obsolescent siege weapons.
     
  8. Teelman

    Teelman Warlord

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    Thanks for the advice so far. I also was curious how other attack? I love warmongering and most of the time I use one big stack and go from city to city. However at times and when Im fighting a larger opponent it really takes a lot of time. Is it better strategy to always use one SOD or split it to 2 even 3 stacks for larger empires?
     
  9. StrategeryBush

    StrategeryBush Warlord

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    The AI will typically have only one SOD to oppose you with, once you have defeated that it is safer to divide your forces. Until then, unless you have a great preponderance of force, it is better to keep your forces united, though sometimes you can actively see that he does not have enough power to challenge your smaller stacks.

    Once it is safe to split your stacks, you do get a much stronger tactical advantage, as the AI has a lot of difficulty coping with multiple threats simultaneously.
     
  10. VoiceOfUnreason

    VoiceOfUnreason Deity

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    I don't have an answer here, but it may help to understand that city defenses have no effect at all on collateral damage (calculated from base strength).
     
  11. wioneo

    wioneo King

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    In early wars, you probably won't have an option, but later on, splitting your forces can speed up war. For intercontinental fights, I usually send a stack with just a few seige units(bombard with ships) to take coastal cities. Then the other stack with most of the seige and stack defenders for core cities.
     
  12. Crusher1

    Crusher1 King

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    Those are some sexy and savvy players. Very Very Very good advice. Time is of the essence, and as mentioned, culture and defense have no effect on collateral. The only time I typically bombard the city is if it is on a hill with a lot of units or if they have LBs and I am attacking with nothing more than cats/trebs. If I have cannons I will always bypass defense and go directly to the units inside.

    So yea - speed is the issue. While some players are correct that having 8-10 siege will normally bring a city down to zero on the 1st turn it also means you fight a slower war because you have to go 1 city to the next city to the next city, etc.

    I prefer to split up my units to conquer as many cities as quickly as possible. I would much rather have 3-4 separate stacks of 3 cats/cannons and X amount of units next to multiple AI cities borders when possible. This will ensure you face the fewest amount of enemy troops as possible. The key is scouting and knowing where the enemy SoD is.
     
  13. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam Top Logic

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    I didn't realize you were doing this but I only started doing it recently too. It does seem situational but usually the :hammers: investment pre-war to bombard and still capture in sufficient time is prohibitive. It's OK in classical wars where like 5 cats can completely obliterate the defenses on non-wall cities, but in most other situations you need a flood of siege to keep going without slowing down. I think I've been OVERbuilding siege, when not faced by sizeable AI stacks to clear before going on the offensive which merit it :(.
     
  14. Bleser

    Bleser Prince

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    I take door number three in this situation every time - spies. I build about four or five spies and make sure I have a decent number of espionage points built up against my enemy. I then go settle my spies in their cities in the order I am planning my attack. Then on the turn that my stack is in range I do the "support city revolt" mission and this moves all cultural defenses to 0% for that turn only. I then send in three or four siege weapons to attack which usually can bring even a defense of 6+ longbowmen down to 3 or 4 hit points and can pretty much guarantee capture every time.

    Of course for this to work you have to have some good espionage points built up, but you should have time to do this since by the time you are trying to capture cities with 60-100% cultural defenses you will have spent many turns building up espionage points against them.
     
  15. averagejoe

    averagejoe Chieftain

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    I guess i dont get the suicide siege concept. I hate losing any unit that i spent
    time and money on. I usually just send them to another city i am thinking of taking or back to my land. Why just waste them? A swordsman cant bombard city defenses.

    Shouldnt you try to keep your losses to your least expensive units?
    In the meantime i could build units or buildings i need instead of having to waste time building another catapult. I could only see suicide if the city is really worth the benefit.
     
  16. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam Top Logic

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    Try using siege vs not siege, and see how much it costs in :hammers: both ways, and THEN decide if you are "just wasting" your siege ;).
     
  17. pigswill

    pigswill fly (one day)

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    I usually bombard defences before going for collateral before killing the defenders. I've tried attacking intact defences and my experience is that I lose more units and the survivors take longer to heal up. I find that healing units and bringing up reinforcements takes longer than just bombarding defences in the first place. On the other hand I don't tend to use very large stacks so I don't have lots of spare units for the next city.
     
  18. yanner39

    yanner39 Emperor

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    I am currently playing a game where I am about to go to war vs. Wang (who has the protective trait). The city defense is only 20% however, the city is on a hill +25% and one of his longbowman are fortified +10% and they have +70% defense bonus (due to the protective trait I think.).

    What would be the best strategy for this? I mean, I could bombard and take away the 20% but is it just a question of bringing more units (macemen, knights, etc)? I know longbowmen are weak (I think) against Knights, but would it better to increase the number of suicide cats and trebs? I have wasting hammers on suicide units.
     
  19. averagejoe

    averagejoe Chieftain

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    But how much does it save in the long run? If i can be guaranteed i will take the city then yes its worth it. If not i would rather lose a less expensive unit. If i could siege and not automatically lose the siege weapon i would try the strategy.
    Wouldnt building something the city needs but doesnt have help more in the long run than losing a weapon on purpose? That is to say if you didnt start the war and havent use spies yet.
    If you havent used spies you probably shouldnt be attacking a city. But if you know what a city has and that you can take the city then i can see the sacrifice being worth it.

    I dont know i guess maybe its a win at all costs strategy but id rather send the catapult to another city and pillage along the way.
     
  20. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam Top Logic

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    If you're not willing to look at the hammer tradeoffs yourself, or just a lot of game summaries I can't help you.
     

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