Cottaging Flood Plains

Cottage Flood Plains?

  • Nay, Farms increase our food supply! Save up for 7 years of good and seven years of famine!

    Votes: 12 10.2%
  • Yay, More commerce means more research! Screw the 3 Food!

    Votes: 91 77.1%
  • Sleep is for the weak! (I dunno)

    Votes: 15 12.7%

  • Total voters
    118

Creatureboy11

A Civ4 Leader
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Good idea? I always cottage Flood Plains because they already have high food, but I like them having more commerce so that my research flies faster. Do you think cottaging flood plains (Oh, oh! He said it!) is a good idea?
 

prayandr

Chieftain
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Nov 19, 2010
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Lansing, MI
It's hard to say something in civ is ALWAYS/NEVER a good idea, but rather it's situational. As far as cottage sites go, flood plains are the best (resourceless tile that is), but if the tile belongs to a city that you want to be a production city then the extra food from a farm may be more important than cottaging it.
 

Creatureboy11

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It's hard to say something in civ is ALWAYS/NEVER a good idea, but rather it's situational. As far as cottage sites go, flood plains are the best (resourceless tile that is), but if the tile belongs to a city that you want to be a production city then the extra food from a farm may be more important than cottaging it.
'kay! It is normally my capital that is Flood Plained.
 

Dhoomstriker

Girlie Builder
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Aug 12, 2006
Messages
13,420
Said in a somewhat-sarcastic, somewhat-serious tone:
Don't do it! The name says "Flood" in it, therefore, clearly, you must want to Farm it!

Farm your Flood Plains, grow your City, whip your infrastructure, regrow your City, whip some more, regrow your City to your Happiness cap, then assign your citizens to work your Plains Cottages. Switch back to the a Flood Plains Farm or two every time that your whipping Unhappiness is about to go away, then return to stagnating growth while working your Plains Cottages, for the win.

Farm the Flood Plains, Cottage the Plains. Yup. That's my take.
 

cabert

Big mouth
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Dec 14, 2005
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France
If I have to give a definitive answer (and that's how the poll is written) I must say farm.

In a way, all things in cIV are better very high. That's why you don't use that many windmills and watermills, that give marginal food, commerce and production.
So in the same way, if you don't know exactly, it's better to have a very high food output, than to have a high food + high commerce tile.
That being said, in a real game I cottage flood plains 90% of the time ;).
 

Infrared

Chieftain
Joined
Feb 16, 2011
Messages
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Always cottage unless I'm hurting for food, or if I automate workers in late cities.
 

Riflin'Joe

Prince
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Feb 4, 2011
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New Zealand
As others have already implied, it is, as always, a matter of specialization. I think perhaps the relevant question in that regard is how many flood plains a site has. In general, the more flood plains a city has, the more likely it is to become a commerce city. Only in fairly rare cases will I develop a site with 3 or more fps as a production city or GP Farm. Of course, there's also the possibility of cottaging over farms later on anyway, especially under emancipation.
 

Choeimok

Spreading the confusion
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Jan 27, 2011
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If my (cottage-) city has a food deficit, they will be my first choice to farm.
 
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My take on it, for better or worse, goes something like this: flood plains are above average tiles, so you want to be working them all the time. Which means not pushing into an excess of food for your stable configuration.

So I'll usually prefer, for instance, 4 cottaged flood plains (12 :food: / 4 :commerce: + cottage yield) to three farmed flood plains (12 :food: / 3 :commerce:), and idle flood plain, and a specialist/brown mine.

Perhaps I shouldn't: this analysis ignores growth rates, invested worker turns, and the possibilities of the whip.
 

Creatureboy11

A Civ4 Leader
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My take on it, for better or worse, goes something like this: flood plains are above average tiles, so you want to be working them all the time. Which means not pushing into an excess of food for your stable configuration.

So I'll usually prefer, for instance, 4 cottaged flood plains (12 :food: / 4 :commerce: + cottage yield) to three farmed flood plains (12 :food: / 3 :commerce:), and idle flood plain, and a specialist/brown mine.

Perhaps I shouldn't: this analysis ignores growth rates, invested worker turns, and the possibilities of the whip.
Can you put that into newbie turns? I'm guessing: cottaging 4 flood plains is better than 3 farmed flood plains and an idle one.
 
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Can you put that into newbie turns? I'm guessing: cottaging 4 flood plains is better than 3 farmed flood plains and an idle one.

That's almost right - the question is more whether 4 cottages have higher yield than whatever the guy not working the farm is doing.

For example, maybe the question is four cottages (8 :commerce:) vs 3 farms (3 :commerce:) and a brown mine (4 :hammers:). That probably favors the farms initially.

However, the cottages are maturing - so soon you are looking at 4 hamlets (12 :commerce:) vs 3 farms (3 :commerce:) and a brown mine (4 :hammers:). Maybe we aren't even yet, but it's getting closer.

Of course, you can upset the whole apple cart by considering a Financial Leader.


On the other hand, 4 :hammers: isn't necessarily the best you can do. Farms do really well when you need to grow your city a lot, and you can get a lot of production out of the whip. At size 6 + a granary, a three pop whip exchanges 42 food and some pop turns for 90 hammers or so? Not to mention the farms are allowing you to grow faster.


Farms also have the advantage of being two techs closer than cottages. Although you can't take advantage of the granary without unlocking cottages anyway. Farms are also slower than cottages, if worker turns are at a premium (3 farms = 21 turns, 4 cottages = 20 turns).


I don't know. Maybe I've been doing it wrong all this time.
 

Creatureboy11

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To above post (won't quote) - So... ... ...you confuzzled me. Would that mean farms, cottages, or very situational?
 

Mylene

Deity
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Pangea
Just depends on what you need, who wouldn't cottage them early when there isn't much commerce around and no gold mines or shiny diamonds in sight?
5 or 7 worker turns also counts sometimes, if you are a bit under time pressure.

So for me this question is answered rather easily: 90% cottages.
Cos on Deity you can never get enough commerce, 7 worker turns for 1 more food...meh :D
 

kalidude

Armchair Private
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Apr 4, 2010
Messages
111
The most important lesson in this thread is that you need to learn to specialize your cities. The choices about which improvement to build on which tile should be dictated by your city role, and how much food the city needs to work the important tiles. The thing about cottages to keep in mind is that they take alot of time to become good. Also, play the map. If you have very few city sites that have hills and strategic resources, you will probably find yourself building more financial cities and therefore more cottages than you would if the situation was reversed. GP farm cities or Globe Theater draft cities want as much food as possible. I'm not sure where, I think it was in the War Academy, but there's an article about city specialization and it teaches you to count the food output and figure out how much more food you need to work all the tiles in the BFC. That would be a good place to start.
 

futurehermit

Deity
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Apr 3, 2006
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If it's a commerce city (or bureaucracy capital) and you have enough food, flood plains make a great cottage tile.

If it's a production city, typically better as a farm or watermill.

If it's a gpfarm, typically better as a farm (unless you have a boatload of food).
 
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To above post (won't quote) - So... ... ...you confuzzled me. Would that mean farms, cottages, or very situational?

Well sure. "It depends" is always the right answer. Depends on what is where it gets tricky.


For a city dedicated to production, Farms are the obvious answer. Food -> Hammers -> :hammer:

Likewise, cities dedicated to running specialists want farms.

In a city that's going to have some farms and some cottages, you'll normally want the flood plains to be farmed and the grasslands cottaged, rather than the other way around, for growth.

In a cottage city with enough food, you'll somtimes want farms to jump start the growth, but then convert things to cottages. eventually, you won't have any farms, but during the intermediate period you'll usually prefer farmed floods.

But often you'll have a food special in pocket, and that generates enough surplus in the early game that you don't need to farm anything. So cottages in that case.


Where I think things get hard is support/hybrid cities. Imagine if you will, that you have four cities, and more land to claim. How do you best use the floods in those cities? How much does it depend on happy cap, proximity of other civs, etc.

Claiming land needs hammers. Paying for the land you've claimed needs commerce. Keeping the barbs from over running your lands needs hammers, but preventing the AI from doing the same needs research.

In other words, I think the tradeoffs are verify different in the horizontal phase than they are in the vertical phase, and that most of the people surveyed are thinking primarily about the vertical.
 
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