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Can I win this game? help!

Discussion in 'Civ3 - Strategy & Tips' started by groobz, Nov 29, 2003.

  1. razor1952

    razor1952 Chieftain

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    ZERKS -congrats
    Definitely required reading IMHO for any player great or small!

    About goverments, Republic only? as Japanese you can change quickly for war etc. Why is democracy so weak?.

    What do you think about fascism/feudalism?

    You've certainly taught me the power of rop/mpp and diplomacy and the power of palace switch.


    I'm amazed you don't research ANY techs!

    BTW how long has this game taken you in actual playing time, that must be close to a record.
     
  2. zerksees

    zerksees in remission

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    Razor1952:

    Regarding governments:

    It is much easier for war weariness to bring down a democracy. Read this war academy article on war weariness to understand why: http://www.civfanatics.com/civ3acad_war_weariness.shtml
    This is why I call a democracy “weak”.

    It is possible to wage war successfully with a democracy, but it requires more intelligence than the AI has to manage it. Read this article: http://www.civfanatics.com/civ3acad_demo_war.shtml

    Sorry I can’t help you with fascism or feudalism as I refuse to buy Conquests.

    It is my experience that if you are going to win by conquest or domination, then the bonuses you get from democracy are probably not worth the trouble, particularly if your civ is not religious.

    For this game, China doomed themselves by trying a government swap right after I declared war on them. America doomed themselves the same way when Germany declared war on them. By the time the anarchy was over there wasn’t much left to save in the new government. India, being religious, may have benefited from switching governments.

    However, even religious civs can have 1 turn of anarchy and somehow you have to guess if the loss of production for that turn is worth the benefit received by switching. I can’t even do that well so what chance does the AI have? Every turn an AI civ is in anarchy I am celebrating because I am gaining on them.

    Republic is the best government to use against the AI for my style of play, and it served me well in this game. I can't say it is 100% best, because I am sure there are cases when others would be better, I hjust haven't run into that situation yet.

    The religious trait is cheap insurance that if I overdo it and the government is overthrown, I know I won’t be in anarchy for long.

    Regarding buying techs:

    As a general rule I like to research them and try to trade them with the AI for other techs or other things. In this game Japan was so far back this was the only way to go. A couple times I checked the trade price vs. the build price, but it was always cheaper to buy. I have never been this dependent on buying techs in a game, but it worked.

    This kind of adjustment is so key to winning games. When your regular strategy can’t or won’t work you make adjustments.

    Regarding what you have learned:
    Glad to help. Let me know if it helps you win games/move up a level

    One piece of advice on MPP: Be careful with them. Just make sure you are prepared for the possible bad side effects before signing them. More than once in this game Japan went to war because of a bad gamble on MPP.

    Regarding game time:

    Right now I don't want to know! When the game is over I will find out and post that info. I think it will be at least 80 hours, though I have spent over 110 on a game before.
     
  3. razor1952

    razor1952 Chieftain

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    Thanks for tips, I've just got conquests and am mooving to emperor .
     
  4. frank_mosta

    frank_mosta Chieftain

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    Not intending to sidetrack the thread, what have you got against conquests? <Add me to the ranks who have learned a lot! Thanks again.>
     
  5. Old&Slow

    Old&Slow Chieftain

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    Zerk

    Great advice as usual. A question please ?

    I have my best Game ever going. It`s 1778 and we all have Cav. and Rifleman and are about the same size.

    I have MPP`s with England who are next to me on a short choke point, as well as Babylon who is next to England, but not near me.

    Babylon just did a DOW on England.

    I`m not sure what to do here, I don`t want to fight all of England while the AI Babylon sits back because a lot of my units are across the Map facing Russia, who I don`t trust.


    What happens in this case with a MPP with both parties who are at war with each other ?

    Thanks !


    PS: Any chance you will get this thread up as a Strat Guide ?
     
  6. Bamspeedy

    Bamspeedy We'll dig up the road!

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    You will join the side of whoever gets attacked in their own territory first. So if Babylon attacks an English unit in English territory, you will join the English side and declare war on Babylon.

    It may end up that you declare war on whichever AI happens to move first in the turn order, since they would attack first.
     
  7. zerksees

    zerksees in remission

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    frank_mosta,

    I have nothing against the concept of Conquests, it is the execution that I don’t like. The game is full of bugs! Just check the thread about bugs. I had a strong feeling it would be this way since vanilla civ and PTW were also quite buggy when they came out.

    Furthermore, I still think there are problems with PTW that are not being fixed (like multiplayer PBEM – which is the whole reason I got into civ in the first place), and I refuse to support what appears to me as an inferior level of workmanship. When they improve the quality of the product maybe I will reconsider. Would you buy a TV if it crashed as often as this game?

    Old & slow,

    If you have MPP with Babylon and England, I believe you will be forced to declare war on one or the other as soon as one crosses the border with the other. For instance, if England units cross into Babylon territory for any reason, your MPP with Babylon will kick in and you will be forced to declare war on England. It makes no difference if Bablyon then invades England, as the first victim gets the support of MPP. IIRC I used this approach against China earlier in this game. Declaration of war does not kick in an MPP, invasion of territory does.

    edit: what bamspeedy said
    When the game is done, I plan to create a strategy article from it.
     
  8. zerksees

    zerksees in remission

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    Final Game Update:

    1830-1834
    Japan passes India for top score in 1830. Japan - 2455, India - 2433. Japan's victory is almost 100% guaranteed now.
    In 1832 Japan has 1234 units and India has 43.
    Japan takes 11 cities from India over these turns, netting Cure for Cancer and the Manhattan Project. The lack of roads is slowing the advance, as stacks of MA are forced to drive through polluted unroaded tiles.
    Japan now controls all remaining wonders.

    1836
    Japan's military power is still growing. I can't use up the units fast enough. Japan is way bigger than all of them combined. So I declare war on England. Too bad I am breaking a military alliance. I no longer care what any of them think. I took 10 cities from them, including all but one on Japan's continent (it is surrounded by mountains. I also cleared out any units I could find, including a 45 high stack of MI near Ise (near middle of the other continent).
    Strangely, England attacks Indian city of New Bangalore with 2 nukes. Japan has units right outside the city so Japan's SDI defends the city. Besides the oddity of this, I have to think England is using an incredibly bad strategy! England should make peace with India immediately, and go all out against Japan. You would think the AI could know this.

    1838
    Took 10 more cities from England, including the last one on Japan's continent. Found 2 ICBMs in those cities. Why weren't they launched? Again Elizabeth targets her remaining nukes at New Bangalore. This time one misses and the second hits. She must figure that she can outlast Gandhi by nuking him out.
    Move units into position to take last Arab city. They have been also-rans the whole game, and I am not going to let them live any longer.
    Workers making progress on the pollution cleanup on Japan's continent, as Konigsberg Road is now all cleaned up.

    1840
    Declare war on Arabs and take their last city, and the settler they had sent out the turn before.
    Take India's last five cities and they are out of the game.
    Took two more cities from England, and start positioning for final assault. I have been using workers to build/finish rail line to expedite moving units into position against England's remaining cities.

    1842
    Newly conquered city of Manchester is rioting. Governor is on but they are still rioting, so I abandon the city. Too bad, they should have kept their mouths shut!
    Took two more cities from England. I am moving through a hilly/mountainous choke point and can't advance fast enough to move on the remaining cities, though these cities open the chokepoint.
    Workers finish up on two more cities on Japan's continent. It looks like we will succeed in cleaning up the mess Indian ICBM's made before the game ends. Put extra workers on new continent to work cleaning up the mess Japanese ICBMs made in the former Indian cities. They will never finish in time but at least I tried!
    Stopped the airlift of units from old continent to new. New continent already has enough units to finish England. Any remaining units produced will be fortified right where they were made. Also fortified the ships, as they will no longer be needed.

    1844
    Took 9 more cities from England. zerksees stands back for a second. 11 bigger and technologically advanced civs are now represented by 2 English cities. The game will end next turn.
    All of the cleanup is done on the main continent. Fortified about 60 of the workers. England is one turn away from completing an ICBM, and I don't want that mess on my continent. I try sabotage but it fails. So I nuke them. I also nuked the other city since only a couple units were near and I want the turn to end next turn.

    1846
    Took Coventry and Norwich. England has been destroyed. I press shift-enter to end the turn. It takes a while for all the remaining automated units to complete their moves, but the game has ended with a Japanese conquest victory. Anticlimactic but satisfying nonetheless.





    Post game analysis to come...
     
  9. anarres

    anarres anarchist revolutionary

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    Wow!! A nice example of how almost any situation can be salvaged. :cool:
     
  10. phizuol

    phizuol Chieftain

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    I've been waiting for the finish before I posted anything. Pretty amazing stuff. When someone mentioned that Japan was an era and a half behind in tech I thought there was no way to come back. Definitely an impressive game to come back and win, and before 2050 even. Great work.
     
  11. Herod

    Herod Chieftain

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    Wow this is excellent reading thank you zerksees, i have moved up a level due to the tips i have learnt :goodjob: am on regent level now.

    :thanx:
     
  12. SesnOfWthr

    SesnOfWthr True Believer

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    Another first time poster! I have also enjoyed following this thread over the past days and weeks and hope that I can apply some of the concepts to my own games. Much praise to you Zerksees!
     
  13. Baalzebul

    Baalzebul Chieftain

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    144 hours of play!!! Great work done..
     
  14. DS_Legionary

    DS_Legionary Chieftain

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    144 HOURS!!! Holy cow that's more time then I spend on 10 games.
     
  15. homeyg

    homeyg Chieftain

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    Until I read this thread I never would have thought anything like zerksees just did was possible. When I would be an era and a half behind I would just quit. Nice work zerksees! I'm also wondering were the ai's in the industrial era in 500 AD or what ever it was when you first started because of the huge map? Ive never experienced this, maybe because I ussually play tiny maps.
     
  16. zerksees

    zerksees in remission

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    Post game analysis:

    In case you were wondering, history will remember me as "zerksees the magnificent" (actually Tokugawa the magnificent). I was surprised it gave this rating at the end, since Japan was so far behind for the first part of the game.

    After the game was over I did some investigating to figure out how Japan got into this predicament at 590 AD. I watched the summary replay to get a better idea how the situation unfolded before I picked up the game. You can download the final save game if you want to see it yourself: Japan1846.sav

    Here are some highlights:

    1725 BC. Japan founds second city. Most of the AI have 8-9, with the slow ones having 4. Early gameplay must focus on building more cities. With all the land available I try to grab as much as I can. I try not to start wars until there is little or no free land left on my continent.

    330 BC. First sign of war as Germany gets a GL.

    170 BC. Expansion phase is over. Japan has 10 cities, Germany has 25 and Russia has 17.

    210 AD Cleveland, an American city not too far from Japanese territory is destroyed - I think by Germany. Another city is not built there until 380 AD. This is free land that could have been grabbed, if only Japan had America's territory map before the war! Since Japan did not have this map, it could not have known to send a settler and escort down there to take the land. Maps are a hot commodity in the game during expansion phase, and I try to trade them for AI maps and whatever else I can get.

    970 AD - Russia enters a golden age. This is funny, since in 1010 Japan was dragged into a war with them, and in the teeth of their GA, Japan was able to grab a nice chunk of her territory. Just goes to show you even a golden age can't get you out from under the AI dogpile.

    1010 AD - Germany enters a golden age
    1020 AD - Japan enters a golden age (of course we already know this)
    1450 AD - America enters a golden age. Too bad they were eliminated in 1500 AD - not such a golden age!
    1695 AD - Mongols enter a golden age. Too bad they were eliminated in 1758 AD - also short-changed on their golden age. And Japan had almost nothing to do with their demise.
    1802 AD - Arabs enter a golden age. Following the trend they were out before their golden age ended in 1840. They almost made it out alive.

    I also went back and retired the game at 590 AD, and found that it took Groobz 2 hours and 18 minutes to get to 590 AD. I recommend spending more time on details of building infrastructure in the early game. Two hours might get me to somewhere between 2000BC and 1000BC.

    I have some ideas why it takes me longer to play all those turns. For me, all workers are manually controlled, and I often look into the city screens to find the best tiles to have them improve. I also build warriors and horsemen to send out exploring. Maybe I can find two civs before they find each other and trade communications for tech. Trading with the AI is important - so I visit the diplomacy screen and check out what is available. I take a lot of time to strategize what is going to happen in the next few turns and in the next 50 turns (I am sure I spent even more time doing this when the game was off). I also never let the AI decide what to build in my cities. In the later part of this game it kept wanting to build more mechanized infantry, and not much modern armor. It was tedious but I hate to waste shields building cavalry when you could be building modern armor.

    DS_Legionary - what map size and difficulty do you like to play? I normally don't play such huge maps since the micro-management kills me when I start taking over the world. I finished this one to prove the point it could be won.

    homeyg - The map size helps the tech pace quite a bit, but so does the number of AI players. There were 11. With all of those trying to research different techs and then trading the techs with each other, that also speeds up the pace quite a bit. You can actually change the tech pace somewhat in a game by changing the number of AI players. If everything else is the same, more AI = faster tech pace.

    Thanks again to all for posting support.

    I'll put a link into this thread for the strategy article I am creating from this game when I get the article finished up and posted.
     
  17. Old&Slow

    Old&Slow Chieftain

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    Zerk

    I`ve enjoyed your Game immensely and re-read it a few times. I now just play with PTW for many of your reasons. In fact your AAR made me re-install the Game.

    A few points.

    Point 1: However I can`t see how in Goobers original the Germans got to the industrial era so fast nor how you got MI so fast and cleared the map by the 1840`s !!

    I find the amount of time time it takes to build improvements, even with workers doing improvements on the city tiles, to be one of the factors in hugely slowing down the Game VS Civ 2. I have never built a Factory in under 8 turns either.

    As example, in the early going, without a lot of workers available, it always takes 30-60 turns to build a Granary, ( key building IMO )which is necessary for City growth which in turn is needed for speed in building units and research and Gold generation.

    Also as has been pointed out, corruption is a killer in Civ 3, and really impacts expansion. which effect building and GPT generation

    I guess either I still, after 100`s of hours of playing on Warlord with 8 AI`s, don`t understand the game or your doing something with the Game to get to your Timeline many of us don`t understand.

    I too micro manage all workers, I carefully manage the building of all buildings and units. As example I have 115 hours in a 8 player Game and I`m at 1960, but, unlike you, I Can`t Get There From Here. :)

    Point 2: My battles, either with Knights or MI always degenerates
    into WW I Attritional Warfare, I kill a stack, they Kill or damage a stack. I_ never_ see the AI wage aggressive war against other AI`s to the point of wiping out an entire AI Civ which seems necessary to clear a large Map.


    I realize I`ve asked a lot of questions here, and I hope you don`t consider it a criticism since I consider you are clearly a really helpful guy. I guess my key point is could you go into some detail ( especially City Growth ) in how you got to your timeline so quickly.

    With Respect & Thanks :goodjob:
     
  18. zerksees

    zerksees in remission

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    Old & Slow,

    I was amazed at how fast the AI got to industrial age, but I think I know how they did it: There are so many of them (11 in this game), and they are on a huge map. By 170 BC most of the AI civs had over 20 cities, and even the laggards had over 15. So clearly the techs will get done faster since the AI’s will trade them to each other. This is why it is so important for the human player to trade and keep up in tech. What is important is that you keep up in tech, not the speed of the tech pace.

    This particular game was accelerated production which is not one of my favorite game settings. This made building go a lot faster than I am used to! I would not worry if it took me 8-15 turns to build a factory in a regular production game. I know I am going to get the dividends back later.

    I would not waste shields building a granary in a city that only produces 2 extra food per turn. One of the greats on this site said that this does not pay off, since that city could produce another settler instead. That settler can start another city producing 2 extra food. I suppose it might be handy to add a few granaries to some cities once expansion is over.

    I do not have a formula for city development. I do have some guidelines. Cities near the capital I try to build with room to grow to size 15-20. At that size they can get the 60-70 shields per turn I want later in the game. By near the capital, I mean within 8 tiles or so. After that I build cities to max out at size 12, and usually within 3 tiles of each other. I know this requires extra settlers but they are cheaper than hospitals. I try to build a settler factory if I can find a good spot, otherwise all the cities have to take turns building settlers. This is the top priority, followed closely by units to protect the cities. The only other early high priority builds are workers (1-2 per city), one culture building and a marketplace.

    You cannot get rid of corruption, but you can address it. Build the forbidden palace somewhat close to the palace as soon as you can, and then use a great leader to jump the palace to another place. You can choose to put it far away as I did in this game, or you can choose to put it in the center of many other of your cities at a good distance from the capital. Either case will help corruption. Of course if you get a GL soon enough you can use it to rush build the FP far away from the capital. If you choose this method you definitely want to put lots of cities around it. Question 1: Do you build the FP, and do you jump the palace?

    For the cities that make a few good shields and a lot of corrupt shields, I try to build a courthouse. Also, if you make the people happy, “we love the king day” will also reduce corruption. Read about this in the war academy.

    I have another comment here regarding Civ1. I have never played Civ1, but I can tell you that this game is NOT Civ1, nor will it ever be. If you want to play Civ1 by all means do, but if you want to play Civ3 you need to “unlearn” Civ1, and learn what you need to win at Civ3.

    Question 2: In your 115 hours at 1960 game, how many civs are left and where are you at for score? You still have 90 turns left to do some damage.
    Question 3: How many cities did you have at 10AD, and on what size map?

    The AI is not smart enough to “finish off” the others. Their tactics are weak and anytime an AI is eliminated when I am not involved, it seems accidental. But, if you can direct enough of them at the same opponent then the victim will run out of units very quickly and then you can attack the cities with lower risk of counter-attack. When I bring AI’s into the war I do not want them to take any territory at all. I just want them to send their units in to the WWI attritional grinder against the AI I am attacking. I want to take the territory. Up until the last 10 or so turns of this game, I always had allies to make the wars easier. Question 4: How many wars have you started with four or more AIs allied with you against the same opponent?

    Use gang tackling tactics too. Put all your units in a few stacks. Put lots of defensive units in the stack. Put your offensive units under an army full of defensive units. This will minimize casualties. I never leave cavalry I want to keep out in the open. They always hide in cities or under defensive units such as riflemen or infantry. Question 5: What do your stacks look like in terms of types of units and counts? Please answer this for pre-tanks and post tanks.

    Based on your comments I feel that you are probably doing OK on the infrastructure building for warlord level. The key to success for you in this game may lie on the domestic advisor screen. Build good relationships with the AI players and put them against each other. Too many players get stuck thinking that the only weapons they have are those they can build. Your allies are much better weapon than you can build. Who they are might change through the game. Sometimes you are on the “coat-tails” of their strategy (as I was in the war against Russia) and sometimes you are controlling them. It does not matter. In either case I determine what is strategically best for my civ (in the realm of what is feasible), and go for it.

    If you go back and read the first part of this game you will see how heavily I relied on allies to make it through, and how the AI’s lack of precision enabled me to capitalize and gain territory time and time again. I had cavalry, artillery for offense and infantry for defense, and the AI’s had modern armor and mech inf! I can assure you there was no magic here. I just mopped up in the wake of the AI’s attacking each other. If they weren’t attacking each other, then I would instigate it.
     
  19. Dr Elmer Jiggle

    Dr Elmer Jiggle Chieftain

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    More importantly it's much more optimal early on. I think this is one of the things that changed my game most dramatically.

    When I first started playing, I tried to build in the "OCP" placement that lets every city grow to 19 or 20. Then I realized that this is only "optimal" city placement if you define optimal as being the best during the late Industrial and Modern eras. Frankly, I'd rather start being optimal a lot sooner than that.

    If you build your cities closer together, they reach their optimal size and your empire reaches is optimal power as soon as they hit a population of 12. You have a much stronger Ancient and Middle Age empire with closer placement. I'll often even put cities close enough that they can only grow to size 6 if it saves me building an aqueduct there.

    Furthermore, it doesn't hurt your late game as much as you would think. As long as you have a few superpower cities (and even those aren't really necessary), your overall production is really the same. Is it better to have 5 cities that each make a tank in 2 turns or 10 cities that each make a tank in 4 turns? Either way you get 10 tanks in 4 turns, but the smaller cities are easier to keep happy, cheaper to maintain, and give you more versatility.
     
  20. Dr Corbett

    Dr Corbett Chieftain

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    Cheers to Zerksees the HERO! I was going to quit a game I had been lagging in tech on, but I've decided to play it out in a conquesting fashion. Lots of people around, so I'm going to stake my claim to territory as fast as possible. That way I can avoid the original player's mistake by being too small -- I'm not THAT far behind anyway, and I recovered somewhat by using Monarchy to slingshot me into the next age and score me four techs and a good deal of $$$.
     

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