1. We have added a Gift Upgrades feature that allows you to gift an account upgrade to another member, just in time for the holiday season. You can see the gift option when going to the Account Upgrades screen, or on any user profile screen.
    Dismiss Notice

Cultural Victory on the Higher Levels

Discussion in 'Civ4 Strategy Articles' started by jesusin, Nov 5, 2008.

  1. killercane

    killercane Chieftain

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2004
    Messages:
    3,278
    Location:
    TN
    I think you mean Lexad (1070 game). My Inca Marathon game finished 940 AD and was also suboptimal. So I think you shoot for 800something AD as a top notch spot and do it without inca.

    Someone else mentioned this is for another article. I disagree. This SHOULD be a general strategy for BTS. Its just like a differing type of economy.
     
  2. jesusin

    jesusin Ant GOTM Staff

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2005
    Messages:
    4,135
    Location:
    Madrid
    I believe sushi should be part of this article, just as researching to radio and then building the +50% towers is in it.
    I don't have the experience, and the community hasn't had the time to reach a consensus: is sushi inferior (as radio is), compared to 100% culture at Liberalism+Natio+Music? Or the oposite? We don't know yet.

    I believe an early rush should not be in the article. This article should not go into details how to do a rush. But if you know how to expand quicker by rushing, by all means, do it. And then apply one of the strategies to win by culture (3 cottage cities, or GPFArm +2 cottage cities, or sushi...). An early rush is not, by itself, a strategy to win a cultural game.

    I believe that discussions about the inherent benefits of different game speeds should not be part of this article (or of this thread, even though it is an interesting subject). Maybe one can mention that the strategy (1cottage city+2GPFarms) is generally inferior, but can be good under certain conditions, one of them being the game speed.
     
  3. killercane

    killercane Chieftain

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2004
    Messages:
    3,278
    Location:
    TN
    :goodjob: Agreed! Nice article, even though it has been threadjacked!
     
  4. WastinTime

    WastinTime Chieftain Supporter

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2006
    Messages:
    15,218
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    California
    As I said, the fact that people don't have the patience for marathon does not mean it is not a seriously unbalanced game element (your definition of exploit).
    So that knocks out most of your list.

    I already explained how quick/culture is not an advantage, just a balancing attempt.

    So that leaves you with 1 argument that "TheMeInTeam" also posted. Defensive wars. But this doesn't hold up.

    What you've done is taken another huge advantage of marathon and twisted it around. On marathon, you can crush the AI easier because they can't quickly build a defense when you show up with a stack. You've just turned it around and put the human on the defense. The fact of the matter is, when you're talking about the top HOF spots, no game includes a defensive war from the human. They're either peaceful or human aggressor.

    But I'll admit, this does seem like it could help a weak player that is in over his head and just wants to salvage a game. So I'll give you 1/2 point. Just one more 1/2 to go to beat my challenge. I thought of one, but I don't want to beat my own challenge.
     
  5. Sun Tzu Wu

    Sun Tzu Wu Chieftain Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2007
    Messages:
    7,920
    Yes, I defined an exploit as either a "bug or a seriously unbalanced game element". Let me rephrase that as "bug or a seriously unbalanced advantage based on a combination of game elements". (Its not really possible to exploit a disadvantage and often more than one game element must be combined to form an advantage.) You may consider Marathon speed to be a seriously unbalanced advantage (and thereby an exploit), but I do not.

    WastinTime, you have made the assertion that Marathon speed is an exploit. I offered counter-examples to disprove your assertion, but you won't accept them. However, even the complete lack of _known_ counter-examples doesn't prove your assertion.

    Marathon speed has an advantage over the other three speeds for several victory conditions. This can be seen in the Hall of Fame tables, but the tables can be deceptive, since most players attempting to get the earliest date over all speeds will choose the speed that seems most successful for that particular Victory Condition. We actually see this in the Cultural HOF table where Quick speed has for many months been used nearly exclusively, since it was perceived to have an advantage over the other speeds due to its proportionally more valuable Great Work.

    Now, simply due to the turn -> date shift from Vanilla/Warlords to Beyond The Sword, BTS has a huge turn -> date advantage over Vanilla/Warlords. However, this doesn't just affect Marathon speed, it affects all speeds to different degrees. So, am I going to say that BTS is an exploit. No. The BTS turn -> date shift is an advantage, but not necessarily a seriously unbalanced game element. If it were, Vanilla/Warlords and BTS games would not be merged together into the same HOF table.

    You didn't address Diplomacy Victories, Space Colony Victories and Space Race Victories were none of the speeds seem to dominate and thus where Marathon speed has no clear advantage.

    However, until recently, you must admit that nearly all Cultural game players thought that Quick speed was the most advantageous. Now, BTS appears to be more advantageous due to its more favorable turn -> date mapping.

    Yes, in the sense that it can't be used as the _only_ advantage in a date record winning game. However, it could alone be used to save a Cultural City or Diplomatic City from capture.

    How is the ability to research Military Technologies very fast (in a small number of turns) in Quick speed a twisting of an advantage of Marathon speed? Perhaps, you don't want to admit that the unit longevity advantage at Marathon speed may have an equal and opposite advantage at Quick speed, the unit obsolescence and upgrade advantage. This can be a clear advantage for a defensive war, but I can see how a human player could utilize it in an offensive war, but probably for Victory Conditions that exclude Conquest and Domination where Marathon speed is likely to remain the best speed to use. You could be wrong about a top spot not involving a defensive war; I'm assuming a defensive war saves a Quick speed win rather than earns it; Although no current top spot Quick speed game may have a defensive war, it is plausible that an AI may declare war on a Player with a Cultural Victory goal and the enemy's stack may take many turns to get to a Cultural City; If the Player successfully defends in the last few dozen turns, it may add as little as 0 turns (hardly affecting the final date), since building units instead of Culture may not delay when the third City becomes Legendary.

    I agreed that an experienced Player aiming for a Peaceful Victory condition is unlikely to need this advantage of Quick speed, since he will likely be handling Diplomacy well, even when not directly related to the Victory goal.

    I really believe that most players have not used Quick speed enough to become aware of its inherent advantages. Frankly, I have not done so myself, which I feebly use as an excuse for not listing all the advantages of Quick speed.

    In regards to the creators of Civ4/WL/BTS, they probably use Score to measure the balance between the game speeds whereas we would use some measure of the earliest date. If that's the case, how can we expect a perfectly balanced game? I'd prefer to just use the game as it is supplied and augmented via the HOF module. In my opinion, it is well balanced enough and everyone uses the same game and HOF module (at least for HOF entries), so it is fair enough. When a game element or combination there of becomes grossly unbalanced, it should be banned from use and preferably a new patch of the game would balance the game elements involved.

    Sun Tzu Wu
     
  6. Sun Tzu Wu

    Sun Tzu Wu Chieftain Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2007
    Messages:
    7,920
    ShannonCT mentioned that he used Sushi in the top Cultural Deity Tiny and Deity Duel games:

    http://hof.civfanatics.net/civ4/game_info.php?entryID=12855

    http://hof.civfanatics.net/civ4/game_info.php?entryID=12896

    Both games did utilize a Quechua rush (used Inca) which is banned from Gauntlet play and not counted toward Elite Quattromasters games, but is fine for HOF play. Since Inca is still permitted for individual HOF games, the Sushi strategy should be mentioned to work well started with a Quechua rush. No further description of the rush should be provided, but a link to the Tiny game above could be included plus a link to a Quechua rush guide.

    Sushi is already clearly better than The Eiffel Tower or individual towers as demonstrated by the above two games. There does remain some question about whether rushing is required to use Sushi. Whether Marathon speed is required. Also, whether the Quechua rush unit could be replaced by a more acceptable rush unit such as the Axeman.

    If this is to be Totally Peaceful Cultural Guide, then no mention of Player rushing should be made at all. However, there should be a section on how to avoid becoming the victim of an AI rush.

    If this is to be a more general Cultural Guide, then all viable Cultural strategies should be listed, including an early rush. The guide can simply state that an early rush (usually Quechua) can capture 2-4 AI cities from 1-2 AIs, usually eliminating each AI attacked (to avoid enemy citizen unhappiness). Two of the captured Cities become Culture City #2 and #3. A link can be provided to an article describing the details of performing an early rush.

    You may want to reconsider this or at least advise your reader about which game speed to begin with.

    Most of your readers will simply want to win their first high level Cultural game (would that be Monarch, Emperor, Immortal and Deity?). You may want to advise them to use Quick speed, since it is quite effective and is less tedious than any other speed. You don't want your reader to give up, because his first high level Cultural game became too long and too tedious to complete. Go for "too long" and "too tedious" after you got'em hooked! :)

    However, some of your readers will be looking to win a Cultural game with as early a final date as possible (like yourself and many others). With such a target reader also in mind, it would be a shame not to include some advice about the best game speed to use with the various strategies mentioned.

    Sincerely,

    Sun Tzu Wu
     
  7. jesusin

    jesusin Ant GOTM Staff

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2005
    Messages:
    4,135
    Location:
    Madrid
    I will be glad to explain my reasons to play mostly Quick speed and my ideas on the fairness of every speed in another thread. Not here.

    This is wrong. And it is a point that affects the article somewhat. The Great Works are not more valuable in Quick Speed. Normal * 0.67 = Quick. 4000c *0,67 = 2680, just as it should. The Great Work is perfectly balanced with other game speeds.

    What is an advantage for Quick is the total amount of culture needed. Normal * 0,67 = Quick. 50000c * 0.67 = 33500c >> 25000c
    I have my opinion on the question "is this advantage enough to compensate all the advantages the slower speeds get?". I won't share it in this thread.



    Normal people start a game, then think about how to best win it. This thread is for them.

    HOF people think about a victory and then select the game characteristics in order to get the best result. They have the HOF threads to discuss these things. I am one of them (ehrrr....this implies I am not normal people!:mischief:). I'll be glad to discuss about game speeds in a HOF thread.


    No, it isn't.

    Yes, it is. Right, every cultural strategy should be at least included in the "other strategies I have heard of" chapter.

    No. An early rush is not a cultural strategy. An early rush is an expansion strategy. Settler spamming, building a settler first thing, or walking away from the shore with your first settler are other expansion strategies. Interesting as they are, they are not the focus of this guide. Once you have expanded and you have the number of cities of your choice, you still have to choose a cultural strategy.

    Readers have their own ideas on game speeds, their own tastes and their own time allowances. They know better than me which speed they enjoy the most. I am not telling them which speed they should use. I am not even telling them to play cultural games.

    Once they have decided to play a particular game, they may want to play for a cultural victory. Then they might want to apply some of the wisdom I have put together in this thread.
    If they get a better result, I'll be glad if they recommend this thread. If they get a worse result, I'll be glad to hear their ideas about how a cultural game should be played.

    Sun Tzu Wu, I truly appreciate your comments. We have very different ideas on what this thread goal is. Maybe I have not been clear enough in the introduction. :confused: Maybe it is my career as a HOF freak that is coming back to haunt me! :confused:
     
  8. Sun Tzu Wu

    Sun Tzu Wu Chieftain Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2007
    Messages:
    7,920
    Sorry, my point as stated is at best vague and at worst as you pointed out above wrong (based on an insufficient definition of balanced). To say that The Great Work is balanced with respect to game speed simply because it satisfies a linear ratio of speed to Cultural value (as you noted above) is naive. To be mathematically correct, you must analyze how Culture is accumulated over time (in years) in a Culture game at each speed. The amount of Culture in each game turn is a monotonically increasing function. The Total Culture accumulated by a particular turn is the Integral of that function. The Integral of a function can be approximated by integrating over a finite delta time. It is a well known fact that each such approximate Integral value will be less than the true Integral value at any given point. The smaller the delta used, the larger the approximate Integral value will be. Therefore, all other things being equal, the Marathon game will always accumulate more Culture that the Epic game; the Epic more than the Normal game; the Normal game more than the Quick game. The value of the The Great Work is not visibly balanced to account for this difference between the game speeds.

    Let's compare Culture accumulation with a Settler settled (Palace is only source of Culture at 2 Cpt) at turn 0 for each speed:

    3985 BC: Marathon 02; Epic 00; Normal 00; Quick 00
    3970 BC: Marathon 04; Epic 02; Normal 00; Quick 00
    3955 BC: Marathon 06; Epic 02; Normal 02; Quick 00
    3940 BC: Marathon 08; Epic 04; Normal 02; Quick 02
    3925 BC: Marathon 10; Epic 06; Normal 02; Quick 02
    3910 BC: Marathon 12; Epic 06; Normal 04; Quick 02
    3895 BC: Marathon 14; Epic 08; Normal 04; Quick 02
    3880 BC: Marathon 16; Epic 08; Normal 06; Quick 04
    3865 BC: Marathon 18; Epic 10; Normal 06; Quick 04
    3850 BC: Marathon 20; Epic 12; Normal 06; Quick 04
    3835 BC: Marathon 22; Epic 12; Normal 08; Quick 04
    3820 BC: Marathon 24; Epic 14; Normal 08; Quick 06
    3805 BC: Marathon 26; Epic 14; Normal 08; Quick 06
    3790 BC: Marathon 28; Epic 16; Normal 10; Quick 06
    3775 BC: Marathon 30; Epic 18; Normal 10; Quick 06
    3760 BC: Marathon 32; Epic 18; Normal 12; Quick 08
    3745 BC: Marathon 34; Epic 20; Normal 12; Quick 08
    3730 BC: Marathon 36; Epic 20; Normal 12; Quick 08
    3715 BC: Marathon 38; Epic 22; Normal 14; Quick 08
    3700 BC: Marathon 40; Epic 24; Normal 14; Quick 10

    See how Marathon speed leads the Culture pack with Epic, Normal and Quick mostly catching up and only momentarily doing so, if ever?

    This effect is repeated every time the Cpt increases. How many times is the Cpt increased in a Culture City in the course of a complete Culture game? It's like having your tax rate increased by .02% 100 times without compounding; effectively 2%. Each such Culture advantage is insignificant, but adding many together may leade to a significant advantage. If your winning Culture game could be improved by 2% by using Marathon versus Quick, how much sooner would that be?

    Again, The Great Work is not balanced with respect to game speed simply because it satisfies a linear ratio of speed to Cultural value, because it must be measured against other elements of the game that also change with game speed like the Legendary Culture value (as you did actually do as quoted below).

    Your biggest mistake is saying The Great Work is in balance simply because it satisfies a simple linear formula that is somehow reassuring, but we all know that that is not enough for a balanced Game. It ignores the fact that The Great Work must be balanced with all other game elements at all speeds and doing so doesn't necessarily result in a nice linear formula for The Great Work with respect to game speeds.

    Sorry, I just don't see how any particular game element can be considered in balance in isolation from the game. As a corollary, only the whole Game with respect to each game speed can be measured as balanced through exhaustive whole game testing. However, as a practical manner, each Victory Condition for the Player can be tested in isolation for balance between the game speeds, so long as none of the AIs have their VC restricted.

    Sun Tzu Wu
     
  9. Sun Tzu Wu

    Sun Tzu Wu Chieftain Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2007
    Messages:
    7,920
    BTS turn -> date shift is so big in the date range for early Marathon Culture games that there is virtually no way that any other speed can compete. It's only a matter of time before the Culture table is dominated by Marathon games.

    Well, actually it is _only_ for them if the decide to pursue a Cultural Victory! :)

    Will you also address which kind of expansion would be most suitable to a Cultural Victory?

    How long do you suggest normal people should wait before they decide which Victory Condition to pursue?

    By which date would it be considered too late to start thinking about a Cultural Victory?

    Your guide could also have a section on how to achieve a HOF Cultural Victory where the goal is simply to win as early as possible. All the other things you mentioned in the above paragraph are simply means by which some people achieve HOF Victories. No doubt MapFinder could be mentioned here.

    Not all expansion strategies will be suitable for a Cultural Victory. How can one avoid saying at least what the end result of the Expansion must be for a particular Cultural Strategy? I'm having trouble with what I'd called the jigsaw puzzle Cultural Strategy Guide that you now seem to be proposing. The Player must fill in on his own the Expansion puzzle pieces of the early game and the Cultural Strategy Guide will fill in the some of the later pieces. However, maybe not all of the later puzzle pieces ...

    You stated that this will not be a totally peaceful Cultural Guide, but it won't mention early rushing to capture Cities that will become future Cultural Cities. If the guide is not limited to Peaceful means of winning a Cultural Victory, what non-peaceful means of winning a Cultural Victory will be mentioned, if not an early rush were it seems War best fits into a Cultural Victory (when it fits at all)?

    OK, you are writing for readers who don't want to know what you can tell them about how game speed may affect a Cultural Victory. You're just going to tell them that all your examples are at Normal speed and you usually play Quick speed. And that is all you plan to say about game speed in your Cultural Victory Guide?

    If this is the type Cultural Guide you want to write, then please do so.

    There are people who start a C4/WL/BTS game with no preconceived ideas about what Victory Condition to pursue. I can't understand how they can delay that decision beyond turn 0, since that would be the absolute latest that I'd make that decision. OK, maybe I could learn to delay that decision until the initial Worker ... Scout ... Stonehenge ... Warrior ... or Settler is built. Oops, turn 1 has commited me to a small set of Victory Conditions already, based on my first build and more importantly my first Technology to research. :)

    Please decide your target readership for this guide and include in it and exclude from it whatever you see fit based on your own goals for this guide. I'm positive that you will write the best ever Cultural Victory Guide for Higher Levels just exactly as you have planned. :goodjob: so far ...

    However, I plan to be around to shake your ideas upside down, attempt to extent the scope of your guide, broaden your target readers really wide, and be a devil's advocate and maybe even a friend too.

    Sun Tzu Wu
     
  10. jesusin

    jesusin Ant GOTM Staff

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2005
    Messages:
    4,135
    Location:
    Madrid
    First things first. You probably know that you are already my friend, from the many exchanges of ideas we've enjoyed in the past. :)

    Please, continue shaking the hall out of my ideas! :goodjob:

    But please, don't try to extend the scope of the guide.

    This guide and this thread is the right place for this situation: I have started a game, the settler and the warrior/scout at looking at me, they want me to lead them to a cultural victory, how will I proceed?

    The sub-1000AD thread
    http://forums.civfanatics.com/showthread.php?t=232250
    is probably the best place to talk about: I want to get the most impressive cultural game ever. I choose the expansion best fit for this. I open civ, press single player, press custom game. Which is the correct speed for the best result? which is the correct leader? map? how will I proceed?

    Jigsaw? Right, civ is a complex game and I don't have all the answers.

    The player has to play the game. I won't play for him. He'll take all the decisions. I just have (tried to) broadened/clarified his ideas about how to structure a good cultural strategy.

    If a player has better knowledge than me about expansion/war/diplomacy/fogbusting/whatever
    and he uses one of the cultural strategies recommeded in this guide, he will beat my results. That's ok. I don't want need to be the number one.



    This one is an easy question. The answer is valid for any VC, not only for cultural games.

    The right time is turn 0.
    Turn 0, after having moved the warrior/scout, is already too late ;)

    You can change your mind anytime and win anyway, of course. But your victory will never be as efficient as it could have been if you had gone for that VC from the very beginning.
     
  11. oyzar

    oyzar Have quit civ/forums

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2006
    Messages:
    6,923
    Location:
    Norway
    I think this is flat out wrong. Going for a culture victory depend very much on your surroundings and neighbours and also what and when you get religions. Of course you can make an educated guess and maybe change the plan. I don't belive moving your first warrior/scout will affect your choice of victory condition or other way around. Sure culture victory should probably be decided some time before you settle your second city, but deciding on it before you know your surroundings when it is not all suited to the map is not very smart(assuming what you are interested in is winning fastest and/or safest)...
     
  12. dalamb

    dalamb Chieftain

    Joined:
    May 9, 2006
    Messages:
    3,160
    Location:
    Kingston, Ontario
    Please don't delete the spoiler tags; they help me a fair bit. If you want to make a .PDF I'm willing to haul your current text together into MS Word or OpenOffice.org Writer for you and set up things like a table of contents.
     
  13. Sun Tzu Wu

    Sun Tzu Wu Chieftain Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2007
    Messages:
    7,920
    Jesusin, thanks for all your answers.

    However, please resolve two statements you made relating to War that at least to me seem to be in conflict. I previously described this conflict as follows ...

    Maybe you could define exactly what you mean by "not a totally peaceful Cultural Guide"?

    Seriously, I hope you write this Cultural Guide in exactly the way you want, because only that way will result in the best possible guide. I will try to be more constructive in my future comments in this thread and also try to avoid (sub)topics that you would prefer to discuss in other threads/or not at all.

    Sincerely,

    Sun Tzu Wu
     
  14. Sun Tzu Wu

    Sun Tzu Wu Chieftain Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2007
    Messages:
    7,920
    May I suggest replacing "compredium" with "compendium"?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Compendium

    "requieres" and "reseach" are typos of "requires" and "research" respectively.

    "religion spreading" is another skill that could be added to the list "research, building, diplomacy and planning ahead"?

    ---

    The only major skill lacking seems to be waging War and that is even covered somewhat by avoiding War (via Power monitoring/adjusting and especially good Diplomacy).

    Sun Tzu Wu
     
  15. Sun Tzu Wu

    Sun Tzu Wu Chieftain Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2007
    Messages:
    7,920
    faster -> earliest (the goal is the earliest Cultural Victory from a given Expansion phase position)

    "I will normally be talking about Normal Speed" -> "I will usually be talking about Normal Speed"
    (Both are OK, but "usually" seems more natural when used together with the adjective Normal (speed).

    abreviations -> abbreviations (typo/spelling)

    analitical -> analytical (typo/spelling)

    I'm not exactly sure what you are trying to convey to the reader in note #3 above.

    You may want to point out here that BTS has several advantages for Cultural Victories that are pointed out in appropriate places in the guide.

    Sun Tzu Wu
     
  16. jesusin

    jesusin Ant GOTM Staff

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2005
    Messages:
    4,135
    Location:
    Madrid
    I mean war is not completely excluded from this thread.
    I think both an early rush and a completely peaceful game are good methods, depending on circumstances. In both cases you want to keep peace later on in order to be able to concentrate on building culture.

    Thank you, thank you, thank you very much!

    I'd hate that my poor command of English turned this thread into something impossible/disagreable to read.
     
  17. dalamb

    dalamb Chieftain

    Joined:
    May 9, 2006
    Messages:
    3,160
    Location:
    Kingston, Ontario
    Hey, I'm an occasional "spelling/grammar fascist" myself, and had no problem reading what you wrote.
     
  18. WastinTime

    WastinTime Chieftain Supporter

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2006
    Messages:
    15,218
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    California
    I guess you both missed my subtle spelling correction from my first post #6
     
  19. jesusin

    jesusin Ant GOTM Staff

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2005
    Messages:
    4,135
    Location:
    Madrid
    Too subtle for me :blush:
     
  20. Sun Tzu Wu

    Sun Tzu Wu Chieftain Supporter

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2007
    Messages:
    7,920
    Compredium is spelled correctly. It is the Spanish word meaning Compendium.

    It is (was) the only Spanish word in the entire Guide and Compredium does look remarkably like the corresponding English word Compendium.

    jesusin, your English is very good. The Guide is especially well written!

    Sun Tzu Wu
     

Share This Page