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Building Balance (V2.6)

Stalker0

Baller Magnus
Joined
Dec 31, 2005
Messages
11,083
Thought it was a good time to take a look at where buildings stand. I'm going to try a new way to look at them. Instead of measuring their power per say, I'm going to measure my priority of the building in how I play the game. Is the building something I always go for, is it one I leave until the queue until I literally have nothing else to build? Lets take a look.

Note: Now of course several buildings do vary in strength depending on circumstances. There are a few that are highly variable that I will note, but many buildings do have some variance depending on map or specific religions, etc etc. I am going with a rough average based on many plays. I am also generally ranking the CV specific buildings fairly low. Obviously if I need a CV, I will prioritize those buildings, but if the building doesn't stand on its own I rank it pretty low.

High Priority - These buildings are great. I love them, I prioritize them early and often.
  • Arena
  • Bank (its not the building itself, its the fact that I invest in a lot of buildings normally, and so I want this early to milk all of that investment science).
  • Chancery
  • Monument
  • Granary
  • Observatory
  • Power plant (Hydro/Wind/Nuclear)
  • Sea Port / Train Station
  • Spaceship Factory (in SS part cities)
  • Shrine (before religion race)
  • Well / Watermill
  • Wire Service

Medium High - Good buildings that I do get early, but tend to fall a bit behind some of the other core priorities.
  • Armory
  • Arsenal (border/coastal city)
  • Barracks
  • Castle (border/coastal city)
  • Council
  • Factory
  • Forge
  • Library
  • Walls (border/coastal city)
  • Windmill
  • Workshop
  • Writer's Guild

Medium - Decent buildings that I generally want to get to once the "critical" stuff is done
  • Amphitheatre
  • Artist's Guild
  • Aqueduct
  • Baths
  • Broadcast Tower
  • Gardens
  • Lighthouse
  • Harbor (heavy sea resource)
  • Military Academy
  • Military Base (border/coastal city)
  • Minefield
  • Public School
  • Shrine (after religion race)
  • University

Medium Low - There just always seems to be something more important to get to, but I want to get to this.
  • Customs House
  • Grocer
  • Hospital
  • Market
  • Medical Lab
  • Opera House
  • Research Lab
  • Temple

Low Priority - I get to them eventually, but I never feel much urgency towards them, and there is never a "feel good" when I do.
  • Airport
  • Arsenal (inner city)
  • Castle (inner city)
  • Museum
  • Harbor (low sea resource)
  • Musicians Guild
  • Solar Plant
  • Stock Exchange
  • Walls (inner city)

Afterthought Priority - Do I HAVE to build this building? Even if I have nothing to build, I will often just do a process instead of building these.
  • Caravansary
  • Circus (if WLTKD is not needed)
  • Constabulary
  • Hotel
  • Military Base (inner city)
  • Police Station
  • Stadium
  • Stategic Defense System

Highly Resource Dependent - These buildings are really resource/terrain dependent, and can vary from a very high importance to barely an afterthought depending on the city terrain.
  • Agribusiness
  • Herbalist
  • Recycling Plant
  • Refinery
  • Stone Works
  • Stables
  • Zoo
 
Not sure how is this gonna help with balance, especially without explanation or comparison against other buildings with similar timing, since building timing itself is dependent on a lot of other factors.

If you want to list them for balancing it should be on some other format like: this era/tech level, we have x buildings available, of which my priority is a1 b1 c1 if condition (1), or a2 b2 c2 if condition (2), etc... thus the conclusion is building d is overall best building in this era/tech level, and they might or might not need some adjustment based on how good it is at that stage.
Which, require a lot more efforts than listing your usual priority.
 
Is this about strategy or balance? I disagree with some of the rankings but I think that just suggests that different strategies are available. This is a pretty good list if playing a city-state centric game, but musicians guilds being unimportant in that situation isn't a balance issue. There are clearly strategies where university or temples are way more important than a chancery for example (but that doesn't mean any of the three are imbalanced).

Either way, IMO council > granary unless you have something very specific making that granary important.
 
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I actually build caravansary fairy often when I'm spreading my religion.

Why are you building Minefield that early?
 
I actually build caravansary fairy often when I'm spreading my religion.

Why are you building Minefield that early?
How does caravansary help your religion, is it to extend your TRs to deeper AI cities for more religious pressure? I mean the pressure from trade routes is pretty minor at that point in the game.

AI tends to like to hit my coastal cities with a mass navy at that point in the game and just park them, cutting off resources and killing TRs. Minefields weaken that play quite a bit.
 
Religious pressure travels longer with caravansary since it's based on trade route distance. You can spread further passively, and the pressure also increases.
 
I don't think one can objectively put stuff like barracks or armory or even walls and castles in any category, usually they are very high priority in some cities, and in some I wait for ages or until bonuses to build them. Arenas are terrible until you have at least two of the buildings she buffs. I actually build barracks quite early in many cities as they are still a science building, I don't have to do warmongering or defense to want them. I don't think we can discuss all eras, rather early, mid and late game buildings usefulness.

The top of the top for me are stoneworks, forges, and stables in that order and I purposefully settle cities in order to quickly benefit from them and have at least three or two tiles buffed by them available. Those are consistent and worth hundred times more than a monument in a fresh city, especially if you have a culture from terrain pantheon. Just build one of them and watch your city stand on its feet very quickly.
 
I don't think one can objectively put stuff like barracks or armory or even walls and castles in any category, usually they are very high priority in some cities, and in some I wait for ages or until bonuses to build them.
There is always variance of course, but over the course of many games I do objectively find that certain buildings float above the rest. You especially notice it when you do that slightly later expansion and have a whole lot of buildings at your disposal.

now in terms of my rankings, from a balance standpoint I agree that buildings up to medium are likely fine. While there is a priority, its not like I hate building them. If anything is to be gleaned its from the medium low, low, and afterthought categories. I do think at that point you have some stinkers.
 
Notice happiness buildings are rated very low. Unless you're playing a tall civ, any wide civ and certainly a warmongering civ, will need these to keep unhappiness from causing near constant revolts.
 
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In this thread you'll see situational buildings ranked low, and then in a different thread will see the same people arguing that we need more buildings that are situational as a way to specialize cities.

As long as every civ can build every building, none of this is a balance concern. If you have a high concentration of "bad" buildings in a single era is can kill pacing and interest at certain stages of the game. That's the only problem I see.
 
Stoneworks worth 100x monument? Doubt.
Yeah, +7 or 5 or 9 production easily trumps 2 culture. And many times you already have culture from terrain pantheons, if not you will get much faster to plus culture buildings like barracks with other pantheons
 
I disagree with pineappledan on this. I mean the state we have is very good, but ultimately i don't think every building in every city is very good design, and the national wonders and even normal wonders are vestiges of a different system. Every building in every city is not ideal cause it was partially made for happiness need system and it has an unintended effect of eliminating unhappiness management. In total o think ideal system would be half half, so half buildings more or less required in every city but in various orders, like now, and half of a third specialization buildings. For example some city can be smaller and not production, yield, or specialist oriented but a specifically military outpost created as a drain of money and yields percentage modifiers but allowing faster healing, more military supply cap and production of course warrships only. Some cities as trading. Some as learning centers but with little production and providing little money and only basic military cap. Some cities only as resource claiming and extraction. That would be just amazing.

That's part of the reason I dislike the mid and later game, cause early you can have this feel that cities have purposes and some are not buildings armories but you focus food nd work scientists and writers in, some cities ar production centers when you build all around buildings and wonders, and some are strictly for military buildings.
 
Too bad we don't have any other kind of gameplay loop to fill up the down time if specialized every city is a thing.
The extermination part of civ series is a lot less emphasized than most other 4x series where warfare is the main gameplay loop (thus they paid more effort in unit/equipment/customization/tactical/asymmetrical rules...)
Civ is more of a management game, where while you can and will have everything, you have to manage the timing to get the best use of them.
Right now the most specialized thing is probably GP generation and maybe science since they have bonuses that stack multiplicatively with others. The rest are just generic cities which are self-sustained and provide some extra bonuses to the empire as a whole.

To clarify, other gameplay loops I'm talking about include (but not limited to) warfare, questing, challenging exploration (with neutral guarding faction), challenging exploitation (terraforming, wonders),... a lot of which don't exist in the context of human history.
 
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Too bad we don't have any other kind of gameplay loop to fill up the down time if specialized every city is a thing.

This isn't quite what you mean by loop, but the culture/science processes are reasonable choices to spend hammers on if you don't want buildings. So are diplomatic units.
 
It's up to the individual player to decide for themselves if they want to build any given building instead of using a process, but yeah if you go Industry as I usually do (at least the right part of the tree) most of the buildings are worth having. Now the order in which you make those buildings is still a thing, even though eventually you get all the buildings in most cities. Obviously if you get attacked on multiple fronts by more than one AI then you can no longer afford to build everything thus the priority order still applies. So even though in theory you can get everything in every one of your cities there is always an opportunity cost for doing that, especially if you don't go Industry.
 
The market stands out to me. Right before markets arrive I find my economy really struggling so I get them online asap. This is the only point in the game, however, that gpt is an issue. Not too long after gold becomes a non issue.

Are you not also struggling for gold? If not, how do you manage. With the trading nerfs I find it managable but something I do have to worry about.
 
Yeah, +7 or 5 or 9 production easily trumps 2 culture. And many times you already have culture from terrain pantheons, if not you will get much faster to plus culture buildings like barracks with other pantheons
Monuments gives always 2 culture and makes the city expand border faster, so it's good to do early. I build it just after shrine or 1st if I don't go for a religion. It's also cheaper.
 
The market stands out to me. Right before markets arrive I find my economy really struggling so I get them online asap. This is the only point in the game, however, that gpt is an issue. Not too long after gold becomes a non issue.

Are you not also struggling for gold? If not, how do you manage. With the trading nerfs I find it managable but something I do have to worry about.
I have more gold than I know what to do with in this version to be honest. Now I am not doing any major warring in the early game (which could be a factor), but otherwise, I am Scrooge McDuck most of the time.
 
I have more gold than I know what to do with in this version to be honest. Now I am not doing any major warring in the early game (which could be a factor), but otherwise, I am Scrooge McDuck most of the time.
Really? Don't you invest in buildings?
 
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