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Challenge-II-01

Discussion in 'Hall of Fame Challenger Series' started by Denniz, May 9, 2010.

  1. kcd_swede

    kcd_swede Jag är Viking!½ GOTM Staff

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    I think the challenge of getting the fastest Settler finish is not at all as interesting as the challenge of playing this at the highest difficulty level you can manage. I decided early on that I wouldn't even try this one at settler.

    I figured that I could probably win this one on Noble level, but the large map could push the limits of my computer unless I played it really well and finished early.

    So I tried it out at Warlord difficulty. First attempt had everyone go on strike with like 8 cities left to conquer. I let harse archers carry most of the load, at least until they started evaporating. Note... I'm talking losing 63gpt at 0% research!!! As my units started disappearing and the enemy started taking back the now undefended cities... I called that one off (I think it was still winable). Domination was not an issue.

    My second try, I decided to use warrior rush a bit more. I captured a capitol before I even settled my starting worker... just walked right in an undefended city. Stupidly settled my settler near another AI... should have just deleted the settler (keep number of cities as low as friggin possible). Anyhow, I warrior rushed the second AI (with 2 warriors). Then I had about 4 warriors and warrior rushed the 3rd. Woo hoo... I now have 3 AI capitols and my own settled city, and only 5 enemy left, each with 1 city. But no more research since maintencance kills. I barely got pottery, don't even think about alphabet or currency or CoL! :lol: Once archers showed up, my warriors are worthless, and I can't get teched up to parity, so I quit.

    I decided I have lots to learn about what is possible on low level play and what remians challenging. So I moved down to Chieftan level to see how that afects... but then did a whole different game (Oracle'd CoL, for example, never fell below 50% research by cottaging early and often, and by getting currency early). Whipped lots of courthouses. I won it and submitted. It won't compete with settler submissions, but honestly I could not compete with those even if I played on settler level (which I won't, because Settler is for WEENIES). :mischief: :lol:

    Maybe I try this one at Noble, just to see. I don't think Domination is really the MAIN problem until you get to Prince or higher. Unimpeded, the most cities any AI managed to settle by 1000AD was 4 (plus capitol). You can't even fill 50% of the land with that few. But they are all so far apart. Having to keep all the crap and avoid strikes is the main problem. I did manage to let Barbs take one city from me before I captured the great wall - this is a winning strategy at higher levels, I'm sure. Note, barbs at this Chieftan level are so ineffective you might as well ignore the GW, it makes little difference at Cheiftan.

    But yeah... Bring it on, folks. Take the challenge! How high level can you conquest victory this set-up?:king:
     
  2. shulec

    shulec Grrrrr... I AM the force! Hall of Fame Staff

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    KCD, your post is inspiring. I was totally turned off by this game until reading your post. It sounds somewhat intoxicating, frustrating, and potentially addictive. If time permits, I may try every level starting with settler, and working my way up to see what level I can't win.

    Can you inspire me for game 4 also?:confused:
     
  3. Sun Tzu Wu

    Sun Tzu Wu Chieftain Supporter

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    Congratulations on your Chieftain Win.

    For higher difficulty levels, I would try Raging Barbarians, building or capturing The Great Wall, and help Barbarians capture the majority of AI Opponent Cities. For the last part, one will need to pillage all AI Opponents ruthlessly, thus keeping them in the Stone Age. The Barbarians will Tech faster than one's AI Opponents. Then all one needs to do to most AI Opponent Cities is reduce their defenders down to a single severely damaged unit, which a single Barbarian unit can easily take. I really think this will work, but my experience Playing with annoying Barbarians is extremely limited, so maybe there's some good reason why it is not a workable plan.

    Sun Tzu Wu
     
  4. kcd_swede

    kcd_swede Jag är Viking!½ GOTM Staff

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    Sounds like a fair plan, but I seldom have any luck getting barbs to act how I want them to. Also, I'm not sure how I would manage to keep 8 civs in the stone age without bankrupting my economy. I think if I were to try that then an "Always war" setting might be nice to prevent war wearieness, but I'm not so sure. Also, I think rushing one or more AI first might be useful. Good luck!
     
  5. kcd_swede

    kcd_swede Jag är Viking!½ GOTM Staff

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    I'm glad you are inspired!

    As for Game 4, Completing any Huge map without a game crash is the challenge. :eek:
     
  6. Sun Tzu Wu

    Sun Tzu Wu Chieftain Supporter

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    Barbarians will usually beeline their target, often a military unit they plan to kill. I wonder whether its possible to lure them to an AI City (with single weakened defender) using one of one's own lower strength military unit as initial bait.

    Use chariots, horse archers with maximum retreat percentage to seriously damage the lone defender in an AI City. Occasionally, you will be "lucky" and take the City; More often you will be "unlucky" and lose the retreat roll and your unit.

    A very early rush of one's neighboring Civs would be essential to build a small network of Cities to keep ahead of the AI in Research and Power.

    Sun Tzu Wu
     
  7. cas

    cas Chieftain

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    I already tried the retreat thing. I'm pretty sure it will work on lower levels <monarch. The jump from prince to monarch on this one is huge (AI starts with archers).

    I'm currently attempting something similar by using cats + other units to knock the AI city down to one 0.8 defender and no culture bonus for the barbs. I could probably do it on Monarch with an overpowered start. It's getting very frustrating on emporer because I can't take out the nearest civ fast enough and the AI spreads too fast...even with raging barbs.

    cas
     
  8. Sun Tzu Wu

    Sun Tzu Wu Chieftain Supporter

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    Well, you have refined this technique to the point where its really workable. Catapults to eliminate the Cultural Defense and then decimate all defenders to 25% strength and eliminating all but one defender is a far more viable approach than I was envisioning. The Catapult can continue to knock down the remaining Defender to 25% strengh until a Barbarian unit can be lured to the AI City, where the Barbarian AI will notice the great chance to capture a City and then do it.

    A review of what may be optimal settings for Challenge Series II Game #1:

    1) Raging Barbarians

    2) Low Sea Level (Far more area in Fog where Barbarians can generate and even built Cities).

    3) TBD: Coastline - Not sure which would be more advantageous to the Barbarians - Solid, Natural or Pressed. Probably doesn't have much, if any effect.

    4) There may be additional settings that may make winning this Game easier at higher levels.

    Initial Goals:

    1) Capture all immediate neighbors' Cities (3 Civs) for a solid basis for Research and Military unit generation.

    2) Build several pillaging stacks to harass the remaining (5) Civs, stunting their Growth, Research, and Build capacities. Pillage everything, including Roads.

    3) Deny all Horse, Copper, and Iron Tiles near all AI Civs by building Forts on them (when possible) and defending them with Archers, Longbow and other units good at City defense.

    4) Destroy all AI units in the Wild (outside of their own Culture) to reduce fog busting by the AI Civs.

    5) Build several 2 tile move units like Chariots, Horse Archers, any Woodsman II, any Guerrilla II; use as the pillaging units in pillaging stacks and to snag undefended/poorly defended Workers.

    6) Locate Barbarian Cities to help defend them (if necessary) and know where Barbarians units emerge from to ...

    7) As already described in detail, prepare AI Cities for Barbarian unit capture and governance.

    Sun Tzu Wu
     
  9. AgedOne

    AgedOne Chieftain

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    I really wanted to try this game on something above settler level. Surely it must be achievable on Warlord? So off I went.

    I started off in the far north-east corner of the pangaea, and began a steady trek of wiping out each civ in turn. Never any problem having enough power to overcome each opponent, but it was all just a bit - just a lot - too slow.
    I realised that it was all going wrong when I had reached the 1000AD onwards period and could see that there were already too many cities in the world. I was going to bust the domination limit before I could get conquest.
    Obviously, I did consider the idea of presenting cities to the barbarians, but I really should have prepared for this from the start. I notice SunTzuWu's comments above. I really must take some of these to heart on my next attempt. Basically, there were too few barbarians around, and they were unbelievably timid! I also handed cities over to my future enemies, knowing they would have to leave them empty for some considerable time. Then I would try to entice barbarians over to them. I watched at one point in frustration for 9 or 10 turns while a barb longbow walked around inside Gilgamesh's borders - an empty city mind you - pillaging roads and pastures and avoiding walking into the city!

    Quite early on I had almost no option but to capture Brennus' city with the Gt Wall in it. So I made a present of it to Ragnar (smallest and weakest civ - also furthest from my capital).

    All-in-all I managed to lose one solitary city to barbarians, and that was never going to be enough.

    Finally, I was left with just Ragnar. I couldn't see any way to avoid a domination win, so I went for a strategy of wiping out all of his 6 cities simultaneously. This, I achieved satisfactorily, but I already knew what I was going to see next: domination victory.

    So I'll give it another push. Probably turn the barbs up a notch to 'raging', and open up the land area to make them more of a menace.
    Then I'll just aim to be more of a menace myself, and cut the AI down in about half the time it took me in this game:/
     
  10. Kaitzilla

    Kaitzilla Lord Croissant

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    I've been trying this one on and off for a few weeks now on Deity.

    I'm not sure it is possible. The Ghandi "Great Wall" espionage economy has allowed me to conquer up to the Dom limit in 1400AD, but now I'm stuck at 55% with game over at 58%. I got Brennus on the east coast and Gilgamesh on the west coast.



    Spoiler :


    Mining Inc will come online in 1410, and I have a great merchant ready for a food corp. Brennus and Gilgamesh are completely surrounded. The stage is set for super ultra mega thermonuclear war :devil::devil::devil::devil:

    Im thinking of giving the 4 remaining civs some of my cities once I whip them down to 1 population and place Sid's Sushi in them. I will force them into Free Speech with my spies, and gift them seafood, and hopefully they will accumulate enough culture to stay in revolt a few turns once I re-conquer them.

    Basically, TMIT's 3rd idea. This game is VERY hard due to not being able to raze. I don't think I can smash 30 deity cities in a few turns even with nukes. And even if I do, I've heard if you reach conquest and domination on the same turn, you get domination :hammer2:
     
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2018
  11. Sun Tzu Wu

    Sun Tzu Wu Chieftain Supporter

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    AgedOne, thanks for sharing your experiences with Game #1 at Warlord level.

    The strategy that I suggested earlier in this thread may work best at Deity level, because lower Difficulty Barbarians are quite lame when it comes to capturing Cities while Deity Barbarians will actually try to capture Cities. Also, don't forget to set Raging Barbarians and capture The Great Wall early; you don't really want the Barbarians to capture your Cities; if you do want to get rid of a pesky City or two, just gift them to the weakest AI and knock down their defenders if necessary; What you really want is the Barbarians to capture the AI Opponents Cities.

    In addition to Deity level, I'm sure the strategy would work at Immortal Level and maybe as low as Monarch. It would be great if Prince level were viable with this strategy, since Warrior defenders would be far easier to overcome than Archers in the early Game.

    Caveot:

    I've never validated the Strategy I posted earlier at any Difficulty level.

    Also, I don't play with Barbarians much and usually play primarily at Deity level, so I really don't have solid experience for extrapolating the Strategy to levels below Deity.

    Sun Tzu Wu
     
  12. AgedOne

    AgedOne Chieftain

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    This is true, Kaitzilla.
    Exactly what I did in my attempt described above. Took the last 6 cities on the same turn. Ragnar was marked as DEAD, but the next turn the domination comes up in preference to the conquest win.
    I knew it was going to happen, but couldn't think of any other option. Besides, I had to see it for myself before I would trust that it was the truth!
     
  13. AgedOne

    AgedOne Chieftain

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    I'm listening..:)..but can't really visualise myself having any impact on more than one of the other civs at Deity level.! That says more about my skill at warfare than anything else.
    I had got the wrong idea, though, about letting barbarians take cities and the Gt Wall's obvious effect on that. I had been thinking along the lines of allowing the barbarians to take a selected number of my less-desirable cities in order to keep my land-area below the threshold. To do this I would naturally not own the Gt Wall.
    You are outlining a different strategy, where you keep your own cities immune to barbs by owning the Gt Wall, but keep the city numbers down by handing indefensible cities over to your AI rivals and waiting for barbarians to oblige by capturing them. Is this correct?

    I have been playing a new attempt today, but I'm only half way through. Setting barbarians to raging does make a significant difference, even on puny Warlord level. I have seen a number of empty cities taken by barbarians, and dangerous clusters of barbarian cities in some areas.
    However, I still haven't got the Gt Wall, so this probably isn't the best test of the strategy.
     
  14. Sun Tzu Wu

    Sun Tzu Wu Chieftain Supporter

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    The choice to play at any Difficulty level is valid, as long as one is having fun, though Winning would be nice as well.

    I sketched out my Strategy specifically for Deity Level, since the majority of my experience playing is at Deity level.

    The Strategy of avoiding possession of the Great Wall was advanced by some one else early in this thread. It is a valid tactic for keeping under Land Domination. However, I do not believe it would work very well at high difficulty levels, especially with Raging Barbarians. It can be very difficult to defend one's own Cities on flat terrain from Raging Barbarians at Deity level. The cost of such defense can be huge and completely avoided via possession of the Great Wall.

    Yes, The Great Wall obviates the need to defend any of one's own Cities from capture by Raging Barbarians. When one starts accumulating Cities in excess of the needed Production levels, Maintenance levels or just to get rid of unproductive or distant Cities, one can simply give them away to a weak AI and have a stack ready to decimate its defenders as needed, lure Barbarian units to these Cities with weakened defenders in the hope the Barbarians take them. Even good Cities can be given to the Barbarians in this manner to increase production of their units and thus take on a greater share of the total Land tiles, hopefully enough to avoid Land Domination.

    Thanks. This gives us hope that this Strategy can be used at lower than Monarch. Sounds like Warlords level may be possible. The latter part of the title of this post could probably be changed from "especially Deity through Monarch" to "especially Deity through Noble"? Maybe marginally effective at Warlord level? (I'm wild guessing now.)

    Regarding The Great Wall, I would say that its more important for Deity level and Raging Barbarians. Having The Great Wall will be less important at lower Difficulty levels, because even Raging Barbarians are not too difficult to defend against at say Prince level or lower when compared to Monarch through Deity level (I'm guessing again).

    Good luck, AgedOne, with your current Warlord level attempt!

    Sun Tzu Wu
     
  15. killercane

    killercane Chieftain

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    I have been playing this a bit as well. Giving away cities is key to the strategy. I think you have conquered too much. The end game imo should be killing units, which requires searching down all ships with a technologically superior large navy and tanks/modern armor vs. an exhausted civ or two. Once you have a huge numerical superiority, you can take the remaining cities. I would guess you would stop conquering at 40-45% land area to be sure you would get under domination and just work on pillaging and picking off units until only one remains in each town with backup to pick off the next units produced. Once you have done that and cleared the seas you should be able to take the remaining towns and win via conquest.
     
  16. Kaitzilla

    Kaitzilla Lord Croissant

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    Hooray, Conquest in 1750! It took 20 hours of nuking, pillaging and squating armies on oil and uranium, but I conquered all the civs on the last 2 turns. I ended up 7% over the dom limit, but all the civs were dead and I got a conquest victory anyway. :rolleyes:

    Now I'll just cross my fingers and hope I saved each time correctly over the past few weeks and started with the right settings.


    Highlight was spies and air blimps revealing Brennus had 150 military units in his capital out of a total 230ish in his empire. Sabotaged the fallout shelter/nuclear bunker, and 2 ICBMs wiped them all out. Gilgamesh made a similiar blunder with 2 seperate stacks. The first strike was definitely devastating! :crazyeye:

    Once everyone lost oil and uranium, the naval battle turned and the marines landed on everyone at the same time with nuclear support.
    Didn't try the Sid Sushi thing, the game was going too fast for me to divert any resources to it, so I founded it and did nothing else with it to keep the AI from having it.
     
  17. shulec

    shulec Grrrrr... I AM the force! Hall of Fame Staff

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    That is stunningly impressive! Even though you have done it, my brain is still convinced that a deity win with these settings is impossible! I am amused to see your pathetic effort has you in last place!;) That will certainly change.
     
  18. Dynamic

    Dynamic But not hurry

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    Yes, I don't like Deity, but in this case such victory deserves the high place may be even first.
     
  19. Sun Tzu Wu

    Sun Tzu Wu Chieftain Supporter

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    Congratulations, Kaitzilla!

    With these settings, it is amazing to get a Deity Conquest Win with any Turn/Date! Turn 385 AD 1750 is an excellent Win Turn and Date. :goodjob:

    I don't understand how you could be 7% over the Domination Limit and still get a Conquest Win. I've always heard that Domination is awarded when both Domination and Conquest conditions are met, but as you said, you killed every Opponent.

    Sun Tzu Wu
     
  20. cabert

    cabert Big mouth

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    all hail Kaitzilla !!!:bowdown::clap::worship::wow::band:

    Whatever the result (place in the challenge, I mean) may be this achievement is unbelievable, stunning, astonishing and proves to everybody that some people are really great!
    hurray Kaitzilla!
     

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