Challenging civilizations & beating the game

Discussion in 'Civ1 - General Discussions' started by loopinaloop, Aug 11, 2012.

  1. loopinaloop

    loopinaloop Chieftain

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    I'm in the middle of a game and I've started to wonder about the meaning of this repeated playing. I don't mean that this game is boring me but that it's not challenging as it used to be. From the day when I've learned the city spamming tactic almost all games of Civ has waned in their re-playability value. Giving that it seems that except for extremely unlucky situations, using a combination of an aggressive and expansive tactics ensure victory, no matter what. The only Civs that pose threat are those that use this tactic themselves. I know that what I've written was obvious but when I read that some players don't even try to play at Prince level or higher, even after 20 years from original release, then maybe it's worth summarizing.

    So, how to keep this game interesting and challenging? Drop random maps and only use an EARTH map.
    Have you tried to play with every civilization? Some are harder then others. While both American Civs have plenty of space for undisturbed development, others are constantly attacked by their neighbours. Not until recently, I was able to survive as Greece. It seemed almost impossible to expand when after building second unit you get blocked by Stalin and Gengis Khan.

    Please, write your list of countries that you consider hardest and explain why. Propose your tactics how to overcome difficulties. Also, you can add other proposals challenges. Somehow I've came to the conclusion that I've beaten the game. It's a terrifying perspective.
     
  2. loopinaloop

    loopinaloop Chieftain

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    I was playing 3 games in a row, loosing every time. Playing as Greece is very challenging when you need to deal with the Russians and the Mongols.

    Any ideas how to survive in this case?
     
  3. Theov

    Theov Deity

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    So I guess that answers itself.
    Yeah you should have some guys around that are expansionistic or aggressive.
    Russia, Zulu, Mongols and some others.
    I dunno, what level do you play on? And on the standard world map?
     
  4. loopinaloop

    loopinaloop Chieftain

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    On standard Earth map, Emperor level.
     
  5. Mize

    Mize Prince

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    There are really two ways to go about it. The first one is the all-time-favoured by expansionistic players "BULD MORE CHARIOTS" method. The name speaks for itself. Although outbuilding either the Mongols or the Russians, let alone the two combined, is kind of hard on Emperor, and on Earth, where they have space to expand and you don't. What I would do is first secure my back. Conquer the French/Germans, which are certainly just a few squares to the Northwest if you're playing with six other civilizations and are not much of a threat early on. Capture their cities (if possible) and colonize the rest of Europe and Britain (nobody's there). The spike this generates in your power rating will likely make the Mongols and Russians less keen on declaring war on you, so you now have a couple more turns before they ask for all your gold and technology again. In any case, you shouldn't really have a lot of money, because you need to spend all of it on chariots and barracks. When you feel confident, move in for the offensive. From then on it's a war of attrition which can set you back a good amount of centuries in terms of development, but in the end you eliminate your two most dangerous opponents and get a decent shot at conquering the world with your chariots/knights if you just keep rolling.

    The other way to go about a situation like this is to entrench your empire. The first thing you should do, even before you start conquering the French/Germans and colonizing Britain, is to try and contain the Mongols and Russians. At first even militia can do. Scout out their cities and if you see a newly-built one without a defender don't hesitate to raze it even if you have to declare war. They will usually offer peace right after you take a city early in the game. Find places with a good zone of control around your borders and fortify some militia and phalanx there. Hills, even forests and rivers will do for the time being. Keep in check with the Russians and Mongols. Pay tribute and buy their units if you have to but keep them out of your borders. In the mean time build up your cities and infrastructure and build forts on the above-mentioned defensive positions. If I play with this strategy, I usually end up spending a good part of the early and midgame as a monarchy, because it is easier to support the garrisons than in Republic. The Mongols and Russians will endlessly slam their knights and catapults at the walls of your fortifications, barely making a dent, while you can safely grow and thrive in Europe and possibly North Africa and trade with partners across the ocean.
     
  6. loopinaloop

    loopinaloop Chieftain

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    I've tried the entrenching tactics, eventually also colonizing North Africa. Unfortunately, almost always I wad outnumbered sooner or later. It seems that the best what I was able to figure out is to take Moscow and Samarkand as soon as possible. The problem is that Athens have poor productivity with hills only on Italian Peninsula. I was trying to build city walls with good defence but somehow I'm out of luck. Sooner or later, Athens fall. When it comes to Americans and Aztecs, in the later stages of game they almost always lead in almost every field. The best thing that can happen to me is to have game in near forest or coal on the hills.

    NOTE: I know that I can try to move my Settler to Eurasian Steppes, or somewhere else, but for the sake of historical accuracy I want to have Athens where I start.
     
  7. Mize

    Mize Prince

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    If you intend to invade either Moscow or Samarkand, or both, which you should be able to do with the resources of Europe, you have to forget about entrenching and walls whatsoever. You need to spend your money elsewhere. Go straight for the wheel and pump chariots and some phalanx/militia plus the occasional settler. The AI will still be outproducing you by a large margin but you can use its shortcomings in pathfinding and actual strategy to your advantage. Move your units in such a way that chariots end their turns out of range of enemy chariots and cavalry and strike only when you know you can annihilate a whole stack of units without much risk. If you manage this correctly eventually you'll start gaining ground and I believe the distance from Athens to both Samarkand and Moscow is about 10-12 squares. Even if you don't succeed in crushing them, you can still keep them at bay while you try to develop your hinterland. Another trick you can use is to give them Monarchy if they ask for it during negotiations. You'll get a couple of peaceful turns to build up your strength and, if they switch, their production advantage will drop considerably.

    That and buffer states. If the Babylonians are in the game, try to keep them there. They'll gladly trade technology with you so that they can then bribe the Mongols with your tech, which you refused to give them. And Hammurabi is a smart fellow and he's also saving up cash, so he can pay you off every once in a while, so you don't thrash his precious city. That way you're still giving the Mongols free tech but at least you're getting something out of it and the invaders will have a significantly harder time reaching Athens.
     
  8. Osvaldo Manso

    Osvaldo Manso Warlord

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    Personally I don't like to play Earth because part of the fun is exploring the world and adjusting my decisions to the given geography.
    However, I have tried on some occasions to play Earth but, unless I start in America, I don't like this kind of game because you get involved in wars very early on. I like to develop well for some millennia before engaging (if necessary) in wars.
    I once tried my chances playing the English on King level but failed miserably.
    So, even without much experience, I would say that choosing the English on the Earth map is the toughest challenge.
     
  9. AnorakTel

    AnorakTel Chieftain

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    What is the city spamming tactic please?
     
  10. Whelkman

    Whelkman Phantom Taxman

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    City spamming is when you create an empire with dozens of little cities.
     
  11. AnorakTel

    AnorakTel Chieftain

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    Thanks. Yes that is a normal and successful tactic - if you can get away with it.

    I like real World Russia - my first emperor win. The extra settler at the start coupled with Moscow's productivity gives you an edge. All you need to do is stay alive until you are bigger than the opposition.

    The French or Germans are no threat but they keep the Greeks honest. The Zulus are bottled up - either by the Egyptians or by your phalanx on what will be your Cairo city. The only real early threat are the Mongol hordes. Of course by the time you meet the technically advanced Americans and Aztecs you have to control all of Eurasia.

    I like the combination of the tough challenge coupled with the certainty of success if you get it right. I really hate losing.

    It sounds like Greece on a lower level might be fun as well.
     
  12. SteveBarone587

    SteveBarone587 Chieftain

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    I like playing on random maps for the same reason that Osvaldo Manso gave: The exploration is exciting and forces creativity.

    I'm playing on only prince mode though and almost always end up losing out on the race to develop new technologies while keeping money in the bank, by 1000AD, I'm usually dead last. I'd welcome advice that could be given to allow me to play a more competitive game. I've looked for a basic strategy guide on here, and haven't found a how to yet, so even a link to something like that would be appreciated.

    My first post here, I never would have thought in 1992 when I first booted up this game from a floppy disc that I'd still be playing it 20 years later.
     
  13. Theov

    Theov Deity

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    Improvements require upkeep. So don't build EVERYTHING EVERYWHERE. Just build what you need.
    I also like to war early on to grab land and get rid of nearby enemies. After that (when I have a large continent, or 2 or 3 islands with 4 cities each) I settle down, keep the troops at home so the people stay happy and then stay in peace for a long time until I can afford to go to war. It costs a lot to keep the people happy, so I wait with war until at least Rail Roads.

    ps.
    Welcome to the forums :)
    [party]:band: :badcomp: :eekdance:
     
  14. C1v1l1z@t10n

    C1v1l1z@t10n Warlord

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    this all depends what version you play, the first Civ version you can build easy many cities but the later version you are sooner or later forced to take care of your people or you have uprise everywhere.
     

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