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Conquering: raze/puppet/annex

Discussion in 'Strategy Section' started by crdvis16, Apr 25, 2016.

  1. crdvis16

    crdvis16 Emperor

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    I wanted to get people's opinions on what to do with conquered cities. The happiness changes mean that one can potentially puppet or annex endlessly and often stay in positive happiness but I'm wondering what people's general guidelines are.

    From what I understand, the main difference between an annex and a puppet is that puppets do not increase policy acquisition cost (is it 15% per city when playing standard/standard?). Aside from the fact that you can't control puppet development, of course. Both puppets and annexed cities DO increase technology acquisition cost though, correct (and is it +5% per city on standard/standard)? With those facts in mind, when should a person puppet vs annex?

    Also, I believe the penalties to technology and policy from cities controlled is based off of the largest number of cities you've ever controlled at one time. Meaning, if you annex a city in order to raze it, you should likely wait until it has burned down before capturing another to avoid artificially raising your "total cities ever controlled" counter more than necessary. Is that true? Following that line of thought- could a warmonger who captures half the world but then has those cities taken back end up with a tiny empire with hugely inflated tech and policy costs?
     
  2. Funak

    Funak Deity

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    The short answer to this question is "no", the long answer is kinda complicated, but I'll guess I'll explain it anyways. Just remember that the answer is ultimately No.


    There are two situations where the game checks number of cities to determine the cost of your next policy(or tech):
    1. When you acquire a city (or when you annex a puppet).
    2. When you finish a policy (and I assume tech)

    As you might notice there is no check for when you lose a city, either by trade, conquest or the torch, meaning the cost does go up slightly until the next check happens, then it drops back down again.
     
  3. tompliss

    tompliss Warlord

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    Puppets have a [pop]/2 unhappiness, while Annexed (without courthouse) have [pop] unhappiness. And courthouse cost more gold than the displayed cost (and you still have the normal "needs" unhappiness afterwards.
    That means much in the early game (when you can't have courthouses) and when you conquer many cities in a row.
    You also can't buy units in a puppet (except Venice?), so that reduce their utility, especially in a war front (though you have to wait for the rebellion timer anyway).
     
  4. crdvis16

    crdvis16 Emperor

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    I guess maybe I was more interested in the long-term comparison between raze/puppet/annex, and so I should have specified. Assuming court houses are available and short term happiness is not a problem, do you have guidelines that you follow on when to raze/puppet/annex?
     
  5. crdvis16

    crdvis16 Emperor

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    Ah, I was not aware of the check when a policy/tech finishes. That nicely avoids my theoretical situation of a failed warmonger ending up with huge policy/tech costs. Thanks!
     
  6. PeeDub

    PeeDub Warlord

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    So can you get a benefit if you wait to take a city until after a tech is founded or a policy is enabled?
     
  7. Funak

    Funak Deity

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    Kinda, I guess.
     
  8. Jdoug312

    Jdoug312 Warlord

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    Don't know if it's the most efficient way or not, but I typically annex capitals, and puppet the rest, unless I see something that give me the impression that the city may have high production after the resistance is finished, in which case I'll annex that too. I like to keep social policy costs as low as feasible.
     
  9. Funak

    Funak Deity

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    I usually Annex any city that isn't horribly placed. If I can produce units/'whatever else I want' I prefer the ability to control its production myself.

    I puppet cities that I still want to keep, but that I realize really never will catch up in infrastructure enough to be a net positive.
     
  10. jma22tb

    jma22tb Prince

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    Every city you acquire, puppets included, will increase your tech costs, but only settled and annexed cities increase policy costs. I personally only annex cities that have World Wonders because they can compensate for the policy increase. If they even had the ability to build them, then there is at least decent production potential.

    Razing is pointless to me unless the city is so poorly placed that it's useless. You'll have to re-settle the area which, depending on if you have pioneers, can be more of a hassle than just leaving the city as a puppet.
     
  11. tu_79

    tu_79 Deity

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    I'm the lazy boy that prefers to leave them be... puppets, I mean. I don't want to control tens of city productions. Even if they are capitals, I leave them as puppets. The only thing that makes me annex a city is if I desperately need to produce a unit, that is, if my army needs reinforcements and they are too far away from capital or if I need that city to build a harbor ASAP.

    I used to raze them if they were nothing special, but then I have to compete with other civs trying to settle in the gaps, so now I only raze a city when it is really awful and it's taking some good tiles that could be worked from my other cities.
     
  12. crdvis16

    crdvis16 Emperor

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    So it sounds like the general consensus is to only raze in pretty special circumstances, when the city in question is just truly crappy.

    Generally to Annex if the city seems like it could be pretty strong, either because it has the infrastructure or tiles to become a productive city and can offset the 15% policy cost increase. Can also annex in special situations where you really need control over production- like if it is your only city on a new continent.

    And last, puppet everyone else.

    I imagine there might be a few civs that would stray from these general guidelines. Cities that Rome conquers might more quickly catch up in infrastructure and so be seen as worthy of annexation. A civ like Assyria might want to raze more often since they might actually enjoy other civs settling new cities in the gaps for them to then conquer and raze again.

    I wonder if maybe a few of the warmonger civs could have been given special bonuses when razing? Huns, Mongols, or Songhai maybe get special bonuses while razing a city to make the raze mechanic have a niche role in their gameplay beyond the pretty limited use it currently sees? Especially since razing a city was historically fairly common I believe.
     
  13. tu_79

    tu_79 Deity

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    Razing was useful in BNW, when you really couldn't afford to add a single city to your empire, but still wanted to wipe out the enemy civ. Now, this is rarely the case.
     
  14. crdvis16

    crdvis16 Emperor

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    I always feel like a game mechanic that isn't seeing much use is a good opportunity for a civ's UA to fill a niche. A few examples that could be added to civs like the Huns, Mongols, Songhai:

    1) Every time they raze a city give all of their existing units a +10% modifier when attacking cities (stacks up to, say, 50%)

    2) Every turn spent razing a city gives +X of Y and Z yields, scaling with era
     
  15. Gazebo

    Gazebo Lord of the Community Patch Supporter

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    Razing wasn't that common. A good old fashioned pillaging, though, yep. That's common. In any case, razing was nerfed in the CBP because it was too easy in the mid-game to raze and plop a pioneer/colonist. Did not promote realistic gameplay.

    G
     
  16. Funak

    Funak Deity

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    I think I should probably emphasize that if I don't think a city is good enough to annex I generally don't attack it (unless it's in my way). So I really don't just puppet for the sake of puppeting.


    Razing isn't really weak at all actually, cities tend to produce really low unhappiness if you just instantly raze them, which is nice.
     
  17. Jdoug312

    Jdoug312 Warlord

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    If my memory wasn't crap, I'd probably go this route too :lol:

    As it stands though, it's nice having cities dedicated to maximizing gold/culture yields since I focus on building units/wonders and getting my annexed cities upgraded to the point of actually neglecting (because I forget lol) to set a city to culture, gold, etc for a few turns.
     

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