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Doubling up on earlier policy trees

Discussion in 'Strategy Section' started by Casworon, May 8, 2020.

  1. Casworon

    Casworon Prince

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2014
    Messages:
    421
    I am new to Vox populi. But from just an initial look at the policy trees it seems though there are four tiers. The three ancient, the three medieval, the three industrial and then the ideologies.

    Assuming that you have standard culture i always assumed the best course of action is too choose a tree from each of the tiers. Opening and advancing down a higher tier tree once you have completed a lower one.

    Occasionally when playing some Civ's however it seems much more thematic to stick too the lower tiers rather than unlocking higher ones. For example Rome i feel could fit very well a Tradition, Progress and Authority game, wide, strong capital and military. Fitting this much more than either arts, religion or diplomacy.

    I do wonder though how viable this is. Are the lower tiers weaker than the higher ones due too the balance. Later tiers being allowed to be more powerful in terms of yields since they are unlocked later.

    Are you weakening yourself by focusing on the lower tiers or is this a viable strategy?
     
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  2. Drakle

    Drakle Warlord

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2014
    Messages:
    136
    Yes, it is weakening yourself unless you have a very good reason. And most of the time, mixing involves a brief foray into a branch, not a full completing of it. Like Byzantium opening Fealty for cheaper faith cost, then filling out Artistry.

    The ancient era trees are about bonuses to that era primarily and scale to that. For example, Tradition gives specialists to the capital, before these specialists would be unlocked by buildings. So it allows the player to start racking up Great Person Generation early. But if you are picking it in the late Classical/Medieval or even later, most of them have already been unlocked by tech.

    The Mid and later trees offer much more powerful bonuses.

    Rome itself is either a Progress or Authority game. Its production bonus doesn't apply to the capital, and it has UU to help aid it conquering.

    Now I have mixed policy trees somewhat.

    I played a One City Challenge Aztecs, where I grabbed parts of Authority and then went and filled out Tradition. Not the full filling out of both trees. Then I grabbed Statecraft for strategic resources and getting city-states.

    However, in said game, I had better than normal culture, since I had a single city where I seriously wonder whored, and unit fighting culture generation and most of the city-states in the game either friendly or allied. If I were playing a more competitive game, where I didn't turn into a runaway, I could have easily lost University of Sankore, the tradition finisher Wonder to the AI. If you mix, you could also lose the finisher wonders to the AI, as well as missing out on the powerful finisher wonders for later branches.
     
  3. Favorius

    Favorius I am not a Chief!

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2002
    Messages:
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    Location:
    Constantinople
    Generally more advanced policy trees are stronger than earlier ones however situations and your own strategy can make earlier ones better suited for your needs so you are not necessarily weakening yourself.

    One of my best runaway games involved starting with tradition and picking authority for second policy branch with Byzantium. With tradition I built an impressive capital with several wonders, get a tech lead for early cataphracts and used authority perks to conquer all 3 neighbouring civs until late renaissance. I tried same strategy with Russia to similar effect.
     
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  4. Stalker0

    Stalker0 Baller Magnus

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 2005
    Messages:
    6,256
    As mentioned it is a weaker strat, though can be a fun one.

    I will sometimes go back to regular trees after get my 2nd tier 3 ideology tenant, as the openers of some trees can be useful for the very late game.
     
  5. Melchizedek

    Melchizedek Warlord

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    Jun 26, 2007
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    166
    I've had this idea too. It probably depends on just how far apart your policies are and how long you can wait for Equality and stay happy enough. It seems conceivable to me that taking the top of Tradition and the right side of Progress could work for wide culture play. Is it obvious that Tradition Opener + either Justice or Sovereignty is worse for that game than Organization + Expertise, assuming you are taking the right side of Progress?

    I am thinking about a path like Progress Opener -> Liberty -> Tradition Opener -> Sovereignty -> Justice -> Fraternity with a civ like Babylon or Poland and planning 'as wide as possible without angering a strong AI and as tall as possible without riots' instead of focusing wide or tall. My next policy here might even be the Fealty opener if I am ok on happiness at this point. No idea whether this would turn out well though.
     
  6. Stalker0

    Stalker0 Baller Magnus

    Joined:
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    So probably the most common double dip strat is called the "border blob" strat. You combine Tradition 2 (which provides significantly faster border expansion) with Authority 2 (which gives bonuses on border growth). Then you get every border pushing thing you can and rake in the yields. Works best with Russia who gets natural bonuses from border growth but can be fun with other civs too.

    I've played around with Fealty 1 + Artistry I (which both provide very strong benefits in their openers) with a full statecraft run. Again, its fun, but it doesn't have the strength of the later game trees.

    Another dip you can play around with is Rationalism + Imperalism. You get the strong science bonuses from both, and don't complete either tree, just get enough policies to get to ideologies and go from there. I would only try this with the belief "To the Glory of God"....because losing the ability to purchase GS is a major major science loss (honestly I think this is like 30% of the benefit of the entire rationalism tree)….but with that belief you keep that benefit.
     
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