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Diety Diplomatic writeups

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Hall of Fame Discussion' started by WastinTime, Jan 12, 2007.

  1. WastinTime

    WastinTime Deity Supporter

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    My Civ IV rehab was going so well. I thought I had put the game away, but I had some time to kill over the holidays. So I decided to experiment with Diplomatic games on Diety. Now the addiction is strong again.

    I tried 4 different leaders on 5 different map sizes, 3 different game speeds and 3 different maps. (I still am not a fan of Marathon) I will try to explain in this post all the differences and what I've concluded about which works the best for me. I'll go in the order that I played the games, in other words, from most mistakes to least.

    Standard size
    Qin, Quick speed, Inland Sea

    In the past, I had given up on the CS-slingshot on Diety. (That's taking Civil Service free from building the Oracle for the uninitiated.) Lately I've found that I can get it very consistently. I (mistakenly) thought I needed Qin for his Industrial trait. However, I've found that any leader can built it fast enough. Even though Saladin can do it, Financial is probably more important. The "long pole" is teching to CoL by about turn 35 on Quick.

    I sacrificed some of my tech speed to run an Engineer specialist....all game long. I never did get one for the UN, so had to build/chop it. I was just coming off Gauntlet 7 where you cannot rush buy space parts, so I forgot that I could have rush-bought the UN. This game should have been done at least 4 turns sooner. Since I managed 1310 AD, I moved on to a new map size.

    Update: I've compared game speeds and Quick looks the the best and should one day finish in 1130AD (123 turns). I've submitted an 1190 AD. I was just 1 turn short. For normal speed to beat that you'd have to finish in 1100AD (171 turns). The timeline clearly favors quick speed.

    Small size
    Saladin, Quick speed, Inland Sea

    I manually generate all my maps. I guess I just enjoy the excitement of hoping the next map will be "the one." This was my worst map start. I only had 1 corn, and 1 gold. I chose not to build the Oracle this time. I don't like that you have to gamble on getting a Great Scientist for the Academy. It also gives me much less of a chance of getting an Engineer. I also doubt Saladin could have gotten the Oracle with only 1 gold. Saladin's spiritual trait should save a lot of years with no anarchy. Several turns at quick speed is a lot of years.

    I popped the usual GS and then tried to get an Engineer after building a forge. The problem is the Oxford U adds scientist points, so I didn't get one immediately. So I cranked up the birth rate by running scientists along with the 1 engineer to try to make a GE before the UN. With only 20% chance I did get one on the last turn before starting the UN. Whew.

    Unfortunately for this game I missed getting Liberalism first by 1 turn. Which means I also could not get to Physics first for the free GS. So again, I expect this 1310 AD time to be beaten soon. Next!

    Update: Research goes faster on smaller maps. Therefore I expect quick speed to possibly pull off a 1070 AD win -- 4 turns sooner than on standard size maps.

    Tiny size
    Liz, Normal speed this time, Pangea

    I waited for a Corn and 2 gold start this time. That, with the Financial trait, should get me to Liberalism first. Since I wasn't getting the "No Anarchy" from Saladin, I bumped up the game speed to normal so civics changes aren't so costly.

    Tiny is tricky. I ran the max opponents so I'd have good tech trades. However, that makes it crowded and can cause wars. I thought Pangea with low seas would give us all a bit more room. Note my other games use my "pet" map -- Inland Sea (High seas usually). Although I have no evidence, it feels like the AI is slowed down a bit on teching speed when they run out of room on this map. I also like knowing where everyone is and that I will have only 2 civs to share borders with. The Inland Sea has plenty of rivers. You rarely if ever get an ocean start like on Pangea. I don't like ocean starts.

    Got the GS, then tried for a GE (got a 2nd GS), Then got the GE on the 3rd try. Not too much time wasted on running the Engineer, but still not optimal. I don't like gambling when the game is going so well. Must work on that (foreshadowing)

    I had fun this game trying to keep my gold. The AI put a city 3 spaces from my capitol, right next to my gold. I went for Philo, which I usually don't get first, so I could have Taoism and boost culture. I did eventually lose the gold, but not until the last 10 turns or so.

    Normal speed seems to be better since I finished in 1180. Things did go well, but not spectacular. So if Normal is better, what about Epic?

    Huge Size
    Victoria, Epic speed, Inland Sea

    What was I thinking? Trying Epic at the same time as Huge? It wasn't too slow until near the end. So how does Huge play differently? Lots of AI civs means lots of trades. My plan was to get enough cash to buy the UN and eliminate the "Great Engineer gamble" which also slows down tech and growth.

    Huge also has so many opponents that you have to pick an unfriendly one. I chose Peter. I made the huge mistake of giving him a tech demand. I didn't think that would count as "you traded with our enemies", but I got a -4 from almost everyone for that and it did not go away. Maybe dropped to -3 for a few of them. I had to kiss some major butt to get them to vote for me.

    I found a good Victoria map. 2 corn, 2 gems and Ivory. Instead of maxing out my capitol around 12-14 population. I got to 19-20. I was a little shy on forests.

    I missed Liberalism (again) and then missed Physics of course. This is what happens on larger maps at Diety. The AI gets too strong. Must work on this problem. (more foreshadowing)

    I finished in 275 turns. That should have been only a tiny bit slower than my 1180 game, but the year was 1304. I think Epic is not a good timeline for this victory condition -- which I am thankful for. I'm not going to try Marathon for personal reasons. Its timeline could be better. Someone let me know.

    Large Size
    Victoria, Quick, Inland Sea

    Again lots of civs, so I can easily buy the UN. It costs way less on quick (about 6000 gold instead of like 16000) Now about this Liberalism race... I know! skip it. Now I don't need to worry about getting Philo either! And, since I now have to research Astronomy (cus it's not free anymore), I can probably get Printing Press free. It's a close call because Sci Method is next and it requires P Press. Unfortunately I have to give Astron to get P Press and then I get beaten to Physics. But that G. Scientist only saves you 1 - 2 turns.

    Only 1 corn and 2 gems this time. I also didn't notice that I had a few too many plains, so my city size stalled out around 15-16. Victoria's +3 health was wasted this game. Only 1310 though with all my fancy new strategy, maybe quick is not the way to go unless you're spiritual.

    Conclusions
    I'm gonna stick with my Inland Sea. Normal speed seems to be the best, but quick might be best with a spiritual leader. Victoria was nice for a change, but I think she's out. Qin -- same.

    EDIT: I played my first non-Victoria game in a while and I miss her. It was just that one map with too many plains that made her Expansive trait useless. On the right map, I think she may beat the others.
    My latest entries in the 1100's were with Mansa. I've always wanted to play him, but liked him too much as an opponent. I finally got over that and played him. He shines on quick speed because you can play a lot of tricks with civics. Just saving 5 turns of anarchy is a lot on these short games.

    I'm not sure you can trade for enough cash on Tiny maps to buy the UN. Might even be a problem on Small.
     
  2. WastinTime

    WastinTime Deity Supporter

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    ** reserved **
     
  3. jesusin

    jesusin Ant GOTM Staff

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    Interesting reading, thank you for the insight.

    I don't think I have understood this. If you are not being first to Liberalism, how can you get Printing Press for free?
     
  4. The-Hawk

    The-Hawk Old Original Geezer

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    :lol: I finally noticed the long line of "WastinTime's" on the Diplo line of the Diety HOF table. Thought I'd better come and read this post! Thanks for taking the time.

    A couple of observations:

    - I've been wondering about Oracle and Liberalism as well. Oracle is great, but if you miss, it is a terrible waste of time. And I never seem to be able to avoid a prophet. I've been wondering if it is better to skip Oracle at Deity/Immortal levels. Similar thought for Liberalism. Liberalism is not that much cheaper than some of the techs that follow and the need to research philo is a distraction from beelining to better techs. At lower levels, when you can hold off Liberalism and use it for a much more expensive tech, it is a great thing. Not sure its worth the risk at Diety. Having said that, my issues are with the risk of missing these milestones. Obviously, in the long run, the fastest games on the HOF charts will have taken these risks and succeeded. This is more of a comment for general game play, winning HOF play requires risk.

    - Between this write-up and your post on the spaceship gauntlet, I think I've come to see a weakness in my play. You obviously do a much better job of tech trading than I do, especially in the lower level games where you gift techs so the AI's can contribute. This is something I need to improve.

    - However, I still suspect you are way more efficient at getting your early civ set up and rocking. I've always believed that small decisions in the beginning have huge effect over the course of the game. I'm curious... do you recommend any of the articles in the War Academy on early gameplay (e.g. the one by ohioastonomy)?

    - I assume you hand pick your AI opponents for these games? I.e. no psychos?

    Well done, impressive results. :cool:
     
  5. WastinTime

    WastinTime Deity Supporter

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    I idea was to trade for P.Press while researching Astron. I've found that you can't expect the AI to have researched it in time since you need to start Sci.Meth. right away. Another problem with my idea is that if you let AI get Liberalism, they may take Astronomy free and cruise past you on the race to Physics. And if that's not enough, another problem comes up. You can't get any cash from that AI civ, because you never have any new techs for them. In my last few games I've gone back to getting Liberalism.
     
  6. WastinTime

    WastinTime Deity Supporter

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    True, I over-think every tiny decision like whether to have high/medium/ low sea level. I definitely choose my opponents carefully. See if you can figure out what my standard choices all have in common (besides their obvious peace loving attitude.)
     
  7. WastinTime

    WastinTime Deity Supporter

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    I do work hard at this. You probably figured that out when I mentioned that I always get Combustion free on those low level games. The AI would never get to combustion without some help.

    On these Diety games, the one tech that I have the hardest time trading for is Philosophy. One AI will always race for it, and then the others stop--leaving a monopoly tech that is rarely traded away. Even if I give Mansa CoL to make him the likely one to get Philo and even if he is willing to trade it, I find that I don't have anything good to give away. If I give Education, he will be first to Liberalism for sure. If I trade Paper it would require a lot of cash since it's cheaper than Philo...and then he still might beat me to liberalism. Since my strategy has returned to being the first to Liberalism again, I think I need to "take the risk", as you mentioned, and trade for Philo one way or another.
     
  8. WastinTime

    WastinTime Deity Supporter

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    I was not aware of the section, so I just went over there and read the one you mentioned about early growth. It's before tree chopping was nerfed. But even so, I do not recommend this on Diety. Although I only skimmed the article, it seemed to be focused on maximizing the size and construction progress of your empire. I only focus on fast teching. Getting the capitol to a reasonable size (5-6) and working the best improvements is way more important for fast tech. You need a library and that first Great Scientist ASAP. More cities early on the Diety level is very expensive. You're going to get to Civil Service as fast as possible and that only benefits your capitol.
     
  9. The-Hawk

    The-Hawk Old Original Geezer

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    Bit of a guess, since I'm not sure I'm correctly interpreting the LeaderChar spreadsheet I downloaded a while back, however...

    It would appear most of these are inclined to trade techs. All of the leaders with a high "notechtradethreshhold" and low "techtradeknownpercent" seem to be in your choice group. Exceptions: Cathy seems to fit these criteria, maybe she is too much of a warmonger? Qin seems like he could have been included as well.

    Or, I could be totally on the wrong track! ;)

    /EDIT: Hmmmm... come to think of it, I need to find a version of this spreadsheet for Warlords...
     
  10. WastinTime

    WastinTime Deity Supporter

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    Willing to trade techs is a great attribute and fine guess. However, this particular group of civs was picked specifically for diplomatic reasons. Nothing worse in a Diplo game than getting to the end and no one wants to vote for you. I'm personally against the Domination style where you vote for yourself.

    Note that on Large there is one opponent that didn't fit the profile.
    Huge was of course even worse.
     
  11. playshogi

    playshogi Emperor

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    How about getting all the civs to vote for you (except your opponent) and still not win? :blush:
     
  12. WastinTime

    WastinTime Deity Supporter

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    That should only happen on a Duel sized map.
     
  13. playshogi

    playshogi Emperor

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    It happened to me on a small, highlands map with 4 opponents. I just didn't expand fast enough, before I was hemmed in. Then on the 2nd ballot, I almost lost diplomatically because Elizabeth went to free religion and voted for the other guy. EDIT: I did ultimately lose diplomatically!!
     
  14. jesusin

    jesusin Ant GOTM Staff

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    Have you tried researching Philo yourself (being second to it) and trading it away on the same turn for techs in the low part of the tech tree?
    Of course this puts the Liberalism race in jeopardize, I try to counter that with a GS spent on Education.
     
  15. WastinTime

    WastinTime Deity Supporter

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    Yes, I usually resort to researching Philo myself. It does trade nicely for the pre-req techs needed for Astronomy. The only other way is to trade CS and a little cash to Mansa for it, but that rarely happens. I really like the GS for education. I've only done it once however because I have not been playing Philo leaders lately. The first GS always has to go to Academy and the 2nd doesn't come in time.
     
  16. ruff_hi

    ruff_hi Live 4ever! Or die trying

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    These games look like OCC - is that right? How do you go about controlling the relationships between you, the other AIs and your opponent? When do you know who your opponent will be?
     
  17. WastinTime

    WastinTime Deity Supporter

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    True! My secret is out. I was waiting for someone to notice that they are all OCC. I have only lost the vote one time, so it's not too hard when you have hand-picked opponents. I've had my opponent change in the last few turns, so I never worry about who it is. I just make everyone happy. I don't even vote for myself! How's that for a diplomatic win?

    (btw, I don't think I can win on a Duel map with OCC. Tiny was hard enough)
     
  18. Airny

    Airny Warlord

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    Did you try it with Warlords, latest patch?

    I tried a diplo win several times, but I had nobody to vote for me.
    My problems:
    -They are demanding, that I cancel my deal with xxx . No matter, which choice you pick, you'll always get a penalty. Do these demandings depend on your relation or theirs or both?
    -I just looked into a save from you and wonder why you only got -1 from one civ for close borders (VicLgSeaQk). I usually get -3 from every neighbor!
     
  19. WastinTime

    WastinTime Deity Supporter

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    I play with civs that like each other. Only in rare instances to they fight and then start demanding that I stop trading with xxx.

    Good question about close borders. I'm not sure how the formula works, but it seems like you can share a border and if there's not too much cultural pressure one way or the other it can only be -1. Sometimes I get -2, but it's rare to see -3. Maybe warlords makes it a larger penalty or maybe the penalty gets smaller if your neighbor is pleased or friendly with you. I guess my answer is just "I don't know" because it's never been a large enough problem for me to care. Very good question though, maybe someone else can jump in and let us know more.
     
  20. godotnut

    godotnut Inverted Unicycle

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    Nice post, and congratulations on your games. I enjoyed reading this. Also, now that I see these are OCC, I can understand why you like Victoria over Liz. I was wondering about that when I read your initial post.

    I assume that you didn't declare a religion in these?
     

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