Brainstorming on Fealty


Jul 18, 2022
As far as my personal taste is concerned, I would say Fealty is my favorite T2 policy tree (I like the flavor and I don't like being so obviously geared toward one specific victory condition by the two others). Yet, I don't take it very often, and even less so since the recent patches. Some others have pointed issues with that tree as well.

  • Fealty feels a bit lacking as a tree, but that's mostly because the other two medieval trees have a clear emphasis on a victory type and Fealty doesn't. This criticism might also be levelled at Industry, but it feels more acute with Fealty, because military bonuses from Imperialism are just generally useful to defend yourself with, and more Science from Rationalism is always useful too.
  • Fealty gives major bonuses towards Religion. I think it's great that we have a tree that focuses on the faith game, but it doesn't feel like it leverages into some other victory path like Domination or Science. Actually, religious power mostly directly contributes to cultural and diplomatic bonuses, which are covered by the other 2 medieval trees in more overt ways.
  • Overall I don't have any real recommendations for Fealty -- I still pick it if I'm not aiming for diplomatic or cultural victories -- but sometimes I think it feels too much like a 'spare' policy tree, that only exists for if you don't really care about anything else.
  • I think in order to really fix the underlying issue with fealty might require adding a religious victory. But I don't see that happening.

The tree is generalist, not so Tall friendly but I can live with it. One of the main issue would be the Great Person it unlocks, namely the Great Artist. It's a rather weak GP as it is, and now that the "Fiefdoms" tenet has been reworked, this GP has 0 synergy with the tree as a whole. You get no benefit from Fealty for creating a work of art, being in a GA or triggering one

I think one of the easiest way to make the tree more appealing would be to change/boost that GP. Each tree must have a different GP (and all the trees have a very good synergy with their GP) so if we take off the Artist from Fealty we don't have that many options. Here are some ideas, just for the sake of brainstorming (I don't pretend any one is feasible or well advised).

1- Make the Great Prophet the GP unlocked by Fealty. It makes this tree the only one able to faith buy the Prophet once Industrial era hits, giving an edge in religious play (your prophets won't be so useless if others can't have one of their own). It would also make missionaries and inquisitors still relevant after industrial (maybe in conjunction with lowering their price as is it proposed right now in the Congress iirc). The consequence would be that the Great Artist would be the default faith buy for all players.

2- Give the Great Artist to Artistry (strong synergy albeit redundant somehow), make the musician the default faith buy for all players and give the prophet to Fealty.

3- Leave the Great Artist on Fealty but giving him a synergy with the tree (something like a theming bonus for the monastery for instance). That could make fealty a strong cultural defense tree helping slowing down Cultural Victory eventually.

If any of you have better ideas and/or feel comfortable making a proposal to boost that tree, I think it would be very welcomed.
I swtiched from autority> fealty into taking only the opener for monasteries+faith rebate while going authority+progress.
The culture and science yields you get from the finisher is a bit too late.
I swtiched from autority> fealty into taking only the opener for monasteries+faith rebate while going authority+progress.
The culture and science yields you get from the finisher is a bit too late.
Why do you like auth+progress? Which do you max out first?
We could provide a small discount to GP buys, something like:

Finisher: -10% faith cost to GP

This would maintain the generalist theme because GP unlocks are triggered by your particular strategy, but certainly would be a nice boost.

An alternative: -20% cooldown to GP buys.
If people are worried that lowering the cost too much, we could lower the cooldown (on standard from 5 turns down to 4). This would let the faith player spend that faith more quickly, and since its end game those faster turns can generate real value, but not as much as true faith cost reduction.
Why do you like auth+progress? Which do you max out first?
Im not certain its better but been testing it and it feels strong, more culture+science than auth+fealty.
I mix them left side on both + auth science on kill, take 5th auth when barracks have come online (this policy is way too early if I go full auth), fill up authority around gunpowder and then the last progress.
Fealty opener is nice for science but it also means I will delay the other branches so ... it depends.
All this is by feel, I've not done any maths at all so take with a big grain of salt.
Id prefer science and culture (+3) from finisher be on like 4th and 5th policy with something new added to finisher.
As it is those bonuses are a bit late.
Fealty would work better if they were able to say... solve some Distress? Statecraft does try to mitigate Poverty as its scaler and Artistry does great at mitigating Boredom and Illiteracy as its scaler and opener.

Scaler: +1 Food and Strength in every City. Cities following your majority religion generate +1 Production.
Finisher: ... Cities following your majority religion generate +3 Science, Production, Golden Age Points, Culture, and Faith ...

Of course, this leads to a total overall buff of Cities following your majority religion generating +2 more Production as well as +3 Golden Age Points but having it be more available can help a bit. I added the Golden Age Point finisher since Statecraft AND Artistry both offer a source for them whereas Fealty has none of it.
Cities following your majority religion generate +1 Production.
That's just another way of repeating the Authority scaler. Food already solves distress. Fealty offers Golden Age Points through Great Artists, even though there's no synergy for having one.
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