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Difficulty levelvel

Discussion in 'Civ6 - General Discussions' started by conor83, May 25, 2020.

  1. Navelgazer

    Navelgazer King

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    I'm not a great Civ player. I've been off-and-on addicted to it since Civ4, and always getting better, but I'm just not a Deity-level player. I hang out around King/Emperor depending on how challenging I've set up the rest of my game. I re-roll a lot. I get frustrated or bored or distracted by the next shiny thing and abandon most games. I don't particularly care about "winning" them, really. I like to build things and try different strategies and see how different different playstyles can be. In the Timmy/Johnny/Spike terms, I'm very much a Johnny. I like to build interesting things and experiment with forgotten corners of the design.

    I also like to roleplay creating the grandest empire I can. I don't go to war much, I never attack city-states, and I try to keep my chopping down to tiles I need cleared anyway or if I really need to guarantee a wonder. I'm aware of better strategies than how I play, in other words, but whatever. It's my game and I can play it how I like it.

    For "Spike"-type players, I imagine Deity could be very easy once you get a handle on how everything interlocks. The optimal strategies don't change as much from civ to civ, because the limitations of the AI mean those optimal strategies stay pretty set in stone. I'm a Spike when it comes to, say, Mario Kart games. The top difficulties of those games are more challenging than 50cc for sure, but I can still expect to win almost every race. But that's because habits like powersliding for blue sparks and always holding an item behind me if possible and a bunch of other things are hardwired and unconscious to me. Trying to explain these things to someone new to the series would be difficult for me, overwhelming for them, and still I probably just have some innate talents for whatever that translate to being good at that particular game. And that's not a particularly deep game at all.

    Civ isn't as deep as Crusader Kings or a lot of other stuff in that vein but it's deeper than most popular games for sure. Some people are really geared-in for how to make the most out of that depth and prove mastery, and will probably feel under-served by Civ in terms of scratching that itch. But hey, the base game is free right now (though IMO the DLC and expansions are really necessary to make it feel "complete") and if you feel like Deity is too easy for you, guess what! You have friends who feel the same way, and Civ has a Multiplayer option!
     
  2. kryat

    kryat King

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    This may be stating the obvious by now, but the difficulty of the game is largely dictated by your approach to playing the game. The constraints the player sets on themselves determines whether the game is easy or difficult. Playing peacefully is harder on higher difficulties than on easier difficulties while playing aggressively is easier on higher difficulties than on lower difficulties. This is not the AI’s fault though: it’s just a product of the way the difficulty mechanic is structured, which assumes most players play generally peacefully.
     
  3. agonistes

    agonistes wants his subs under ice!

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    Its not trolling.

    There is (or was for me) a breakthrough point, like an epiphany, where the game just changes for you.

    I couldn’t imagine losing on deity if I was trying to win. I think I’ve lost two games in vi - one where had I hadn’t settled by turn 20 and walked my starting settler into an eagle warrior, and another as egypt in like my third game where I was just fooling around with builders.

    You can even win with one city in deity - why its called a one city challenge.

    You don’t need meta or exploits (unless going for a record I guess).

    For people who drop down from deity, like me, the most common reason is that lower levels let you screw around more, roleplay, do crazy stuff. And I think that is telling.

    It indicates that the great divide is that people who breeze through deity (or harder) just optimize much more. They micromanage successfully. From moving units efficiently, to maneuvering city workers, to switching from production to food at just the right point during a build, I think there are players who do it right without thinking.

    Now, I see the posts saying ‘there is no way people waltz through deity’, etc etc.... but for some, the opposite is true, we see posts about people being challenged, even on emperor or lower, and just cannot understand how that is possible. Really.

    But, at least for me, there was that breakthrough point. I remember in CtP making my first horseman and the next turn a tank rolled by.

    But about a month later I had my first deity win, and it just clicked - ‘oh, that’s how you do it.’

    Maybe the big difference is some people during a game (they are trying to win) attempt to do what they want, but a good deity player does what he has to, with every decision. There is always a best way, and the deity player knows what it is. And you play enough, it is just reflex.

    I think there is little doubt vi is the easiest civ game, by far. If people can destroy iii, iv, and v, I don’t see why there is disbelief vi can be wrecked.

    I’m willing to bet the steam numbers are bs. Pretty sure lots of people only play until they know they have won. I’m also pretty sure that the majority of good players either no longer play deity, don’t finish, or stopped playing vi.

    Think of this: you can conquer a city with 4-5 warriors. And in a game where expansion is the most crucial element, its disgracefully easy STILL to farm settlers. You literally can set up farm points and steal settlers left and right. You don’t even need to build a single settler to win.

    If the op is new to civ type games, there will be a learning curve. If he played iii, and crushed deity consistently, vi will be a cakewalk once he has experienced an early barb horse rush and learns how to deal with it.

    So, there are varying views on the subject. And you seem to be having trouble believing that other players have a different view of the game. Well, many do. Its not trolling.

    I’m sort of curious now if more players find deity easy, or hard.

    I really only play deity now to prove a point or test something. So I don’t regard myself as a deity player. I think my last deity game was an occ domination for @Victoria, to show it was possible (albeit, you could keep the capitals, just couldn’t build anything with them). No restarts, no reloads...

    I will say this - I’m not sure I would win with an all desert or flat tundra/snow start. Which in that regards makes it harder than iii (see my game where i started with one mostly desert city and gave russia 40+ starting cities, in iii). Still, you can always move your settler, so this rerolling talk is absurd. *That* was a troll comment.
     
  4. Icicle

    Icicle Prince

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    I think people forget how bad Civ V was before VP and other all encompassing mods, which is why I remain stubbornly optimistic for Civ VI. Although every time they say they won't release dll yet that hope dies a little.
     
  5. agonistes

    agonistes wants his subs under ice!

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    Agree. I bought this new sub pass thing, but I’m not really enjoying it. I’m finding the sexy new content is unenjoyable if the base game is boring. The building aspect is good, but they never did anything with war or diplomacy. And they broke @Gedemon ’s giant earth. That map, for me, makes or breaks the game.
     
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  6. riddleofsteel

    riddleofsteel Office Linebacker

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    I just tried to get three cities by turn 30 as Maya on Emperor and it was crippling. It pissed Nubia, my neighbor, off so bad that they declared war on me and stomped me flat!
     
  7. Vizurok

    Vizurok Magyar Soldier

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    Things to note here: do not piss off Nubia (or any other civ with ancient UUs) if not absolutely neccessary - expand to the other direction, send a delegation on the turn you meet, do not exchange capital location. Also, as the Maya you might want to consider getting Archery (and pre build a slinger or two) for the perfect UU for early defenss.
     
  8. yung.carl.jung

    yung.carl.jung Hey Bird! I'm Morose & Lugubrious

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    Maya is probably one of the worst Civs to do this with because of the lack of housing/need to build farms instead of mines. Maya also generally does not benefit a lot from Rex, less so than most other civs. You ideally want to have at least 2 mines/pastures worked when building your settlers. I rarely have a start where I only have 1 hill and 1 pasture available, so with your first builder that should usually be possible. I'd suggest Rome or Russia, who have a direct bonus for settling cities fast.

    I find playing peacefully on Deity is much easier than playing violently, but it takes a lot longer depending on how much land is available. Playing violently needs a lot of planning and troop movement, while playing peacefully only really needs you to be good at manipulating the AI. I have managed to settle more than 20 cities on a huge map without having anyone declare on me. If you can get friendship with your neighbors, the game is essentially over. If you can't then you're not going to have peace either way :D
     
    Last edited: May 26, 2020
  9. acluewithout

    acluewithout Deity

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    What do people mean when they say Civ is easy?

    I think the game is very hard for new players, because there a so many mechanics and many are unintuitive and poorly explained. Although, new players can get pretty far with build three slingers and then spam campuses.

    Playing Immortal, I find conquest in the mid game v Medieval and Renaissance Walls almost impossible. But that’s not because the AI is good. It’s because there are unit gaps which make overcoming Medieval and Renaissance Walls and not getting chewed up by xbows hard.

    I also have games where I just restart after 10 turns because I’ve spawned too close to a Natural Wonder and it’s all just too easy.

    Playing weak starts through is very admirable. But it can just mean you’re grinding out a tedious slow victory. Is that actually skill?

    You can also play to achieve your own goals, like maximising envoys or settling every continent. Or just finishing as fast as possible. That can take quite a lot of skill and planning, but the game doesn’t reward that with a victory screen.

    Or now you can just drop comets until the Earth is a wasteland. Does that make the game harder, or is it just making the outcome random?

    People say the AI is weak. But to be clear, Civ doesn’t have an AI and never will. The computer has no memory and is essentially playing an optimised script. And if the computer truly played like a human in multi-player, then most of the game mechanics would be irrelevant because you would just spam units endless. Would that make the game better?

    One thing that would massively improve difficulty is just having the computer players more deliberately and urgently head towards victory, so that they are threatening to win the game from turn 200 onwards. The human player would then need to actually take steps to stop that. Alliances would be dangerous, because you may need to crush your Allies to stop their Space or Culture Victory, but now you’re thrust into a Betrayal Emergency.
     
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  10. riddleofsteel

    riddleofsteel Office Linebacker

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    I had archery prepped and even had a few Hulche! I kind of had to settle toward them at the time, but I didn't send a delegation and I did exchange capital locations.

    What is Rex? And how do you crank out 3 cities by 30 turns and not just have them be bare tiny cities?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 27, 2020
  11. yung.carl.jung

    yung.carl.jung Hey Bird! I'm Morose & Lugubrious

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    Rex is rapid expansion. You are correct, you should have them settled by turn 30. they will come unline about 10-20 turns later, when you have political philosophy and the ancestral hall and start your second wave of builders.

    If you want a more in-depth take on expansion I have written something here: https://forums.civfanatics.com/thre...-feedback-welcome.644711/page-3#post-15774134
     
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  12. Casworon

    Casworon Prince

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    Late game multiplayer Civ VI is so much fun. Death Robots and Rock bands are crazy powerful and completely imbalanced, but because of this allow for some truly hilarious comebacks and end game results.

    Would be great if singleplayer could offer the same nail biting hilarious finishes.

    If only we had the DLL.....
     
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  13. Victoria

    Victoria Regina Supporter

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    @acluewithout quite rightly mentions diplomacy. It is a facet of the game many just ignore and yet it is rather powerful.
    I remember in the early days jumping on deity and being next to Trajan and Monty thinking there was no way to survive... but with diplomacy I not only survived but really enjoyed the game, it was not some grind of tropps in a turtled position, it was flattering and convincing the right leaders do do the 'right thing'.
    If you have not maniplated and joint warred then you cannot really comment on the difficulty of deity (if you are saying it is hard)
    It is possible to lose if you take risks and I am a risk player and have lost, but it is so incerdibly rare I find being prudent a bit dull at the beginning but I do often be so when I can see a game is going to be interesting.
    And yeah, you just get to know when to do stuff, being flexible with the map and the opposition on it and the changing circumstances. is indeed the best way to play.
    I play about 30% deity, 60% emperor and 10% prince. I probably enjoy my emperor games most followed by my prince and agree wholeheartedy with @agonistes, deity is for you to lose after T20 but its a little tiresome as it lacks some of the fun element.
     
    Last edited: May 26, 2020
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  14. clapyourhands

    clapyourhands Prince

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    Does anyone have a lot of experience with the different speeds of game and how it relates to difficulty? I play on Online speed most frequently and I've found that I don't always win even at Prince or King, either due to timing out to a Score victory or an AI snowballing faster than I can handle it. I definitely don't play optimally (usually have 3-4 cities and don't really build military units unless I think I'm going to be attacked), but I would think speed plays a role in the overall balance of things.
     
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  15. riddleofsteel

    riddleofsteel Office Linebacker

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    I'm pretty sure it's a factor, but I don't remember for sure how. I think on faster speeds, the AI gets to do things even faster. It could also mean not getting a good enough chance to fully leverage your UU or other advantage before time moves on too quickly.
     
  16. Icicle

    Icicle Prince

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    When I say Civ VI is easy what I mean is that it's rote. As others have said, once you learn the systems you'll see the same thing almost every single game, you'll go through largely the same steps every single game, and you'll make only a few decisions that are ever meaningful, and usually then it's not so much of a decision as it is doing a scan to see where you are on the flowchart. One of the things that encourages rerolling so much is that once you get knocked off of this flowchart players that know what to do, but don't understand why they're doing it, start to flail about and lose their heads. Those who understand the mechanics well enough can always just make a few adjustments and get back on it.

    My problem isn't so much that Civ VI is easy, it's more that the "difficulty" system makes it boring. Easy could be overcome with meaningful decisions and divergent gameplay, as a roleplayer at heart I don't really care that I'm challenged as much as I care that I'm having cool moments and telling a cool historical story. I think after a few playthroughs Civ VI fails to deliver that to do the degree its predecessors did, except maybe Civ V before mods. It's still a civ game, it still delivers to a certain extent, I still enjoy it, it's just frustrating with how it could be so much more.

    When playing Civ III or IV, or VP at high difficulty levels you never knew exactly what was going to come at you, nor did you ever know for sure what you'd have to work with. Sure there were standby strats but there was also a lot of adjusting on the fly. Runaway AIs could ruin your day, starting next to different neighbors genuinely made a huge difference, map generation could really screw you, stacks of doom were legit terrifying at times, etc. The "one size fits all" approach just seems so much more pronounced in Civ VI to me.
     
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  17. acluewithout

    acluewithout Deity

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    I really don’t agree with this.

    You can play the game rote, but only in the sense that in principle you can grind out success using a particular formula. But play the game well and or playing fast actually requires you to adapt to the map quite a lot. I find it impossible to have a consistent build order or diplomatic strategy or even first Governor. And when I do stick to a particular strategy regardless of context , I find my outcomes vary widely meaning my strategy is only good in some situations.

    The late game is a different beast, and it can be quite passive and feel a bit meaningless. But I think that’s more a product of FXS not really having any vision for the End Game other than “get it over with”. Seriously, RnF and GS have us units for just rush the end of the game eg Royal Society, GDR, Rockbands; and now NGP just gives us a more blunt end game timer in the form of Comets.

    Anyway. No worries if you disagree. I’m not going to debate the point - I’ve had this conversation too many times - and many share your views.
     
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  18. Icicle

    Icicle Prince

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    Oh I totally agree, no point in debating it, it's a matter of opinion after all, I'm glad you find the game diverse! :)
     
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  19. Vizurok

    Vizurok Magyar Soldier

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    I think that this is also one of those things where the 3 cities at T30 would be nice-to-have, but it's absolutely not deal-breaking if you don't get to do that. We have discussed that the first Settler should be the second thing to build in your capital but the second Settler is more of a question mark. Ideally, you don't even need to hard-build it as if you get an early faith start (Natural Wonder, CS, goody hut and the God-King card), then you can just pick up Religious Settlements for the free Settler.
    Personally, if I don't get the free one, I tend to wait until I get the Settler boosting policy card (available with Early Empire, that should be the 3rd or 4th civic to unlock) as I really don't want to pay premium production if I can get it cheaper. (There might be a min-maxing situation here, as it can be argued that the extra production from the 3rd city can compensate for the undiscounted Settler production in the capital, but there's no real need to dig deeper into that).
     
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  20. montalaar

    montalaar Chieftain

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    how about simpliest answer i have not seen here? iq.
    i teach children, some of them excel at anything they do. some can achieve goals only in very specific areas. soma are unable to do math no matter what. some do math with incredible easy.
    i know people who can not succeed in any game of any genre. but some players are top with their games.
    some games require high reaction of brain, very fast decision making, other games require cognitive capacity. some people excel at one, some at other, but there are people who can not do almost anything on par with both before.

    i would say - king is best for enjoyment. but prince is where average person should start. other people will be better to start at settler. and tiny proportion of people can start right away with deity.
     

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