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Bribe or Befriend? Question on a great Izzy IMM start

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Strategy & Tips' started by King Pluto, Apr 30, 2013.

  1. King Pluto

    King Pluto Emperor

    Feb 16, 2009
    I rolled a great Isabella start this morning (IMM/Norm/Fractal) and have played until 575 BC. I've come across a decision point that I thought would make for interesting discussion. I've also attached the start, so if you want to play it, spoilers below.

    Starting location:
    Spoiler :

    Game discussion and question starts here!

    I have a great capital location that's been powering my research and expansion. GK, Shaka, Brennus and Zara are all part of a Jewish bloc, and they aren't close (I just found GK to the north, separated by jungle). To my east is Julius Caesar, the only Hindu. I have great income and want to try to push my expansion north against JC, but I'm afraid of a DOW from him.

    My situation leading to my question: I went for Aesthetics and now I find myself holding Alpha/Aesthetics/Math over GK and Shaka. I can war-bribe GK against Zara, or Shaka against Zara/JC/GK. Unfortunately, neither can be bribed against Brennus.

    The way I see it the game is full of war-prone AI, and many of them are going to be buddies (peaceweights + shared religion). To try and keep myself from getting declared on in the near future, I think I can either:

    1. Bribe Shaka in on Julius to keep him busy. I could then get GK to dogpile JC to really mess with him (I tried this and it worked). With my neighbor busy, I can safely convert to Judaism like the rest of the world and start building relationships to keep the rest of the war-mongers away from me.

    2. Bribe all the Jews to war with each other. I could either get a dogpile on Zara or have GK vs. Zara and Shaka. While the Jews get all angry with each other, I can swap to Hinduism and get JC to Pleased. This will help me beg gold and small techs to keep him off my back. (Note: he plots at Pleased).

    What would you do? Would you rather keep a potential threat at bay using diplo, or war bribes? Want to try? The 575 BC save is also attached.

    Some screens:

    Northern land:
    Spoiler :

    Southern land:
    Spoiler :

    Spoiler :

    Spoiler :

    Attached Files:

  2. lymond

    lymond Rise Up! (Phoenix Style!) Hall of Fame Staff

    Mar 11, 2008
    Bribe And Befriend ;)

    I think you played it right for the most part. JC is the main concern, so keeping him at war is good. I would probably be trying to setup to join that war too. Bribing in Shaka will get you friendly with him in no time. Maybe start a fake war with Zara and sic GK on him. If you have Judiasm you should be in it now and try to get Mono soon for OR, that will get you nice with Bren soon.
  3. ben-jammin

    ben-jammin Emperor

    Jan 12, 2011
    I find that trying to start wars amongst AIs that share a war/peaceweight affinity AND a religion doesn't work very well. They'll make peace quickly and the negative diplo hit from having declared war on each other won't be enough to get them to dislike each other.

    Julius seems way backward. From your screenshots I would have scouted him a bit, chances are if he's settled on that iron and has it garrisoned by a chariot that it's his only source of metal and hasn't started producing praetorians yet. You want to bribe someone who actually shares borders with him if possible. And if you can whip quickly enough or already have a handful of units, move htem into position to take his iron city and declare yourself. Then bribe an AI in much more cheaply to hopefully keep enough of his units tied up that he doesnt have much of a stack to bring against you.

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