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Does the settler start at the best position ? +position question

Discussion in 'Civ5 - Strategy & Tips' started by Nocturno14, Nov 26, 2010.

  1. Nocturno14

    Nocturno14 Chieftain

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    Is it true that when the game begins the settler is at the best position already ?

    Is it always better to place the capital at the coast ? For some reason I always do it.
     
  2. Fizpez2

    Fizpez2 Chieftain

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    I don't think there is any reason to believe that it the best position - it certainly qualifies as a "good" position but I have found that moving one spot is sometime very beneficial as it puts two mine resources within reach of the first worker instead of one mine and one calendar type resource. Not having to research both up front gives a certain amount of flexibility.

    Most people seem to prefer to start along a very certain path but I like to try and see if I can make most situations work. At King level it seems pretty easy to make almost any start situation work - trying to hone my game to have the same kind of "whatever" capability at Emperor now.

    My guess is that most people would find the initial location suitable but hardly the perfect spot for the capital.
     
  3. stormerne

    stormerne is just a Retired Moderator

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    Many people hold the opinion that Civ5 terrain shows little differentiation between types of tiles. This is proven by the ICS strategies that abound, which don't much care where you settle and are more about compact spacing of many cities. By that argument, it's a waste of time wandering with your first settler.

    On the higher difficulty levels, you really haven't got time to go wandering anyway. The other civs will use every extra turn to steal an even more unbalanced advantage over you. Therefore go with what you get (or within half a move) or reload if you must if you really really don't like it.

    Coastal cities are fine in some ways, poor in others. Great for communications and exploring. Poor for food. Vulnerable to sea-going attack. If you want practice at having no sea at all, use a map type like Great Plains.
     
  4. firecat318

    firecat318 Warlord

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    How are coastal cities poor at food? With the lighthouse (which is very cheap to produce and you get it early on) each water tile will produce 2 food. That is equivalent to a grassland. Considering you will probably have a few fish resources around, they will produce 4 food once you have a lighthouse. If anything, you are going to be low on production if you have a coastal city.
     
  5. elthrasher

    elthrasher Revcaster

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    If you want to warrior rush, then moving closer to your prey is probably a good idea. The turns lost in production will be made up by the increased speed of your warriors arriving at their destination. Of course, unless you are replaying a map, you have at best an educated guess which way to move.

    If you are on a Pangaea map, then being coastal is not a priority. You can just ignore navy for the entire game. Otherwise, being coastal does increase your options a bit. You might want to rush and just puppet everything. If your capital isn't coastal, then you either have to annex, settle a new city or do without a navy. Other than that, I don't see being coastal as a major concern.

    In general, I think it's pretty much fine to leave your settler in your starting position. There may or may not be a better spot to found your city, but you can be sure there is a worse one.
     
  6. Slowpoke

    Slowpoke The Mad Modder

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    Turns lost is a pretty big deal. Imo never go more than 2 turns without settling, and only do so for cattle/fish or a hill/plains/forest if you have 0 production. You lose gold, science, production, lots of stuff.
     
  7. Paeanblack

    Paeanblack Prince

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    It is worth missing a turn or two to settle on a 3-food square, especially if that square gives you access to hills. Luxury resources in your capital's radius aren't that important, except for Gold, Silver, and Gems, which add quite a bit of cash to a tile you would be working otherwise. Walking away from Calendar resources is no big deal at all, since Plantations are the worst tile improvements in the game.
     
  8. stormerne

    stormerne is just a Retired Moderator

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    They're poor - maybe I should have said poorer, which is what I meant - for two reasons. Firstly, the maximum level you can get a non-resource water tile with a lighthouse is the minimum you get from unimproved grassland. Secondly, you haven't the flexibility with non-resource water tiles; they do one thing, 1 or 2 :c5food: and 1:c5gold:. The flexibility of land tiles can be important: when you have maritime city state food coming in, you can turn your land tiles over to trading posts or mines, but you can't do that with a water tile.
     
  9. Slowpoke

    Slowpoke The Mad Modder

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    Of course, a lighthouse with 2 fish can be a pretty big boost, if it weren't for the cost and maintenance making lightouses worthless outside of archipelago.
     
  10. stormerne

    stormerne is just a Retired Moderator

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    If you do settle on the coast, capital or not, do at least try and make sure you're also on a rivermouth! Some buildings are only available if you're next to a river, and tiles adjoining a river get extra gold.
     
  11. EverNoob

    EverNoob Prince

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    I almost always reposition my settler but I settle in max 3 turns. Occasionally with America I spend 1 more turn if I sight a particularly great spot. The +1 sight of America is a huge bonus when repositioning your starting settler.

    Coastal capitals are only worth it if they are in a bay, so you can maximize your amount of land yet get the benefits of coastal. Otherwise inland is better to start.
     
  12. Warspite2

    Warspite2 Prince

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    I normally settle in position but there are times I move 1 space away prior to settling. In very rare occasions, I will settle 2 spaces from start if I see some good stuff.
     
  13. wannabewarlord

    wannabewarlord Prince

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    Funny, I too have a tendency to go coastal if I am close. It just doesn't seem right to be one tile away from coast. However, I do realise it is not a priority for land-based maps. I always try to get me a river in a turn or two though. Rivers seem great.

    Most of the time, however, I do settle in place. On King difficulty I have yet to encounter a bad starting spot I am given. It might look different further up (Emperor+), I dunno.
     
  14. timtofly

    timtofly One Day

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    Has any one "not been" placed by a river? I would say settle in place next to a river, but get that next city on the coast ASAP. Unless you do not want the Coastal Wonders of that era. The only good forsight is hindsight. Until the satilite shows where the AI capitals are will you know if they had a good as start as you did or not.
     
  15. bobshiznit

    bobshiznit Chieftain

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    You do not always get placed next to rivers. There are usually rivers nearby though. The civ you play does have an impact on this because of start biases. If I recall correctly, america will always start on a river. I'm not sure about other biases.

    As far as settling the first city I only move if I can get more mines into the first ring. I generally do this with all cities. Buying hills is expensive and hills are very far down the priority list for tiles your culture will expand onto. Another reason I move is to get a 3 food tile in the first ring. I always settle before turn 1 ends though.
     
  16. ezysquire

    ezysquire Warlord

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    The game speed you play on makes a difference here. On standard or faster speed, then you need to settle before the end of turn 1. That gives you a maximum of three movement points with the settler unit. With the warrior moving first to reveal more of the map, this should always be achievable.
    On Epic and Marathon speeds, you can allow yourself 5mp on Epic speed and 7mp on Marathon speed. The improved production speed of the capital city by being in a better location should counteract the lost build time of those earlier turns. Getting a few turns further behind the ai at the start is easily made up with a strong city placement.

    Overall I move the settler at the start to a good location. I perceive it as a huge bonus if I start the map on the perfect tile.
     
  17. alpaca

    alpaca King of Ungulates

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    Due to the way the game distributes resources, the spot where your settler starts is guaranteed to be quite good - but that doesn't necessarily mean there won't be better spots nearby.

    In vanilla, most resources are pretty poor yield so don't worry moving away from them. You want production and food in your capital so if moving gets you a cattle or something, by all means do so. Border expansion is very slow in this game so you won't grab it before the early game is mostly over.

    I think you're always guaranteed two luxuries within distance 2 from your capital, distance 3 can also have some.
     
  18. therottweiler

    therottweiler Chieftain

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    Getting your first city going is more importatn then wandering turn after turn for the "Perfect Spot" I will rarely move more then 1 hex before settling and only then to pick up a cow or whale.
     
  19. humbe

    humbe Warlord

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    I think map generation scripts special handle a bit how the terrain looks just around where you start. Maybe making sure you have some of something at least, though I have no idea if they do or what the criteria is.

    But, I'm sure you're far from guaranteed that your starting hex is best. I'd say you have three priorities with a capitol city:
    - Food. You aren't allied with maritime city states yet. You need to grow to get some initial research/production going.
    - Production. Your first settler must be built here. Granted, extra food counts as production too, so if worst comes to worst and your capitol has ****** production, build a settler early to make a production city. But as it's your first city it will be your biggest city for quite a while, and you want it to be good at producing stuff. So production is pri.
    - Luxury resources. You want to expand fast. It takes a good while to research and build happiness buildings. Luxury resources are your ticket to early expansion. Try to make your first cities to get as many unique luxury resources with as few cities as possible. (Within 2 hex range preferrably)

    On the other hand, Civ V cares less about city placement than Civ IV for many reasons:
    - Bonus food/production resources adds much less extra food/production, so they're less critical.
    - The palace starts with a good deal of production, so hex yield early on has less of an impact.
    - As a city grows hex by hex, and useless hexes aren't prioritized, it doesn't matter if some hexes within the city radius are useless. Culture growth at least avoids the totally crappy hexes for early expansion, and you can include important hexes by buying tiles.
    - You no longer should be next to river to get health bonus.

    Each turn you're not building your capitol is a bonus turn for everyone else, so it is only a good thing if you noticable improve your starting position. Faster game speeds makes this cost much higher of course. Thus I'd suggest to settle first turn unless you have already seen something that will noticable improve your position.
     
  20. Paeanblack

    Paeanblack Prince

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    Don't forget about Sugar. Plopping a city on that makes it a 3-food square, because the Marsh magically converts to Grassland, even without the knowledge of Masonry.
     

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