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earth 18civ tutorial

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Strategy & Tips' started by JoeHollywood, Jul 1, 2006.

  1. JoeHollywood

    JoeHollywood Warlord

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    wow, rome...the civ they don't let me play anymore...grin...

    ok, you obviously know the basics of the rome game, so won't dig into that too much, except where it is important to describe the "transitionary" phase.

    first I'll say that rome is the 1...ONE...ONLY...civ in the scenario that can pick exactly what territory it wants, and no one civ can stop them. it's the "uber-civ" if you will.

    you have to pick your objectives with rome, and realize ( at least with good players ) that the whole world will be against you. here are the ones I normally pick.

    1) england is the only potential superpower near you...so england must fall sooner rather than later

    2) there is no better "single city" location than thebes...none more poorly defended either due to egypts lack of metals

    3) france, spain and germany have incredible health and production resources, but the "happiness" resources we all crave are in east asia.

    4) all of northern asia, most of africa, the middle east, and most of western asia have near worthless land.

    so taking this all into heart I take the following strat with rome...

    1) prae rush paris...if done right your first prae appears about 2600BC
    2) continue the prae rush on madrid as paris begins work on a galley, as well as my second roman city ( I put in on sicily ) begins the "african galley"
    3) drop on thebes and london almost simultaneously
    4) prepare for a large war in germany...take out germany...and put on the brakes
    5) realize that happiness will rely more on civics than resources ( representation or hereditary rule )
    6) fight the temptation of just because you can take over a lot of the world this early, don't
    7) make russia and persia your friends...they make great buffers to the asian powers , ie china and japan
    8) western europe and mediteranian africa is all you'll posess early, but you will need great production/science for later in the game
    9) as technologies and improvements present themselves take over more and more of africa, and use it as the additional land mass/production/economy/science needed for the late game
    10) win the game by being the first to tanks/modern armor/nukes/air force, and not overextend myself during the early and middle ages.
    11) navy is key...best way to stop a naval drop is not to let a navy get near you
    12) air force is an even bigger key...nothing like 20 stealth bombers "softening" up a stack.

    Let me know what you do, and where the "fizzle" happens and maybe I can narrow this down a bit

    Joe
     
  2. Betafor

    Betafor Dictator

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    hmm... Interesting, you're one of the few people who doesnt use rome to attk the second most powerful superpower rome has to contend with - germany - early.

    What i end up doing in all my games -

    1)Standard beeline to iron working, while building a work boat then worker, worker finishes iron mine before iron becomes available, and starts working other mines.
    2)When iron is researched, switch to praets and get as many as possible. Research sailing
    3)search sailing, while still getting praets..., when you have enough, take out france, and bring remaining army down to spain, with a few supplementary troops if need be.
    4)When galley is completed, build some more praets, and head galley to the english channel. Bring the remainder of your army from france/spain conquest to western france to be picked up by the galley. Use galley to take over england with praets
    6)use fresh troops from rome and perhaps some supplementary troops from madrid and paris to take out germany DURING the england invasion
    7) if all goes well, you should still be in good shape for getting egypt. send some galleys w/ praets over to egypt, and take both or all three of the cities(AI usually has 2 or 3 by this time, a player is probably more unpredictable and may have some extra cities somewhere, or invaded arabia)
    8) during all these conqests, take ONLY capitals and secondary cities.

    **Greece usually falls somewhere in 6-7, i have 2 big armies by this time, one goes to africa, other establishes a foothold in greece and turkey, eventually border pushing in turkey via culture, but that's later in the build stage

    End result -

    City list:
    Rome
    Paris
    Madrid
    Berlin
    (germany's second city, forgot name)
    London
    York
    Thebes
    (egypt's second city)
    Athens
    Sparta

    Notice i never built a settler! IMHO, that's a building phase action, not something for rome's early war.

    After this, i usually end up building... then winning game by a large margin by some method or another because of europe's supercities (you gotta love a place where 99% of the squares are recources) and expanding further south into western africa... Depending on how large my empire is, i usually end up running state property asap.

    The above is an "ideal" game... sometimes i'll run into a really good player or a really bad one.

    The "fizzle" happens when i get to this point. I have so many excellent untis on the field, i sometimes consdier taking over russia and arabia. I do this, and i find my economy in shambles. Or, i'll be more inclusive, try to build and build some more, but then i end up building too much and i'm not quite sure when to bring out the war banner again. after mace? knights? rifling? calvary? i don't want to wait too long, because i'll be scared of russia's cossaks, but i dont want to get too early and lose my lead. I'm currently waiting until after all my courthouses are up, but by that time it takes a lot more effort to take over an empire... Anyway, thoughts?
     
  3. JoeHollywood

    JoeHollywood Warlord

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    I used to play rome very similar to that...here's the catch...your "fizzle" isn't happening at that point...you're only seeing the effect of the "fizzle" at that point.

    The reason for not taking germany before catapults is simple...why fight a praet vs axe war when you can fight a praet vs archer war?

    as for running into a "good player" or "bad player" in multiplayer...hop in one of my earth maps...oh for heavens sake best buy get me my pc back...rome is generally played by an AI these days...because my "rome busting" strats are pretty common place now...grin

    Joe
     
  4. Betafor

    Betafor Dictator

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    So... where am i messing up? how early?

    My reson for killing germany is the same reason you wait. They have copper. You wait until you have the advantage over thier axes, i attack before they can establish a good enough empire to mobilize or even connect the copper. The steps above look like i attk it later on than i actually do. It works 100% with the AI, and on most humans who aren't experts. If I saw a good player as germany i may do your method. Egypt, with no metals, is prime for the taking and easy to conquer for a much longer period of time than germany.

    O really? I've been on vacation for 3 weeks... pray tell and i'll see if you know something i don't :) :)
     
  5. Eqqman

    Eqqman Walrus

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    In the original post you mention that you've won with all 18 Civs. I'm curious as to what your strategies with the Incas are. The poor design of South America makes them the hardest Civ to play in my opinion (with Mali coming in at #2). However I suppose this was done to prevent them being the easiest to play by virtue of having a whole continent to themselves.

    The Incas might be easier to play in a multiplayer setting where all players have fairly equal skill, since the players can contain each others' growth while the Incas develop unmolested. However I've only done this map single player and been finding victory escapes my grasp.

    My grand strategy revolves around either trying to colonize Argentina ASAP or moving up to eliminate the Aztecs instead and expand into North America. In both cases the problems of having to ship my Quechuas by boat slows down development significantly. If I go after Montezuma, then by the time I've taken him out Roosevelt has had too much of a free hand in North America. When I'm pushing into Argentina, the Barbarian spawns severely hamper my growth there. I'm not sure how to combine these two strategies- the shipping aspect means I have only a weak stream of troops to send in any one direction and trying to split them doesn't seem wise. By the time I've dealt with the New World successfully, I'm too far behind the Old World to get a win.

    I've yet to have a game where I can get Optics before a Japanese Caravel pops up outside Cuzco. It doesn't help that the Incas are the most isolated Civ on the map, reducing science research because you can't get the 'known civ' bonuses. I'll usually prioritize making a Workboat so I can get contact with the Aztecs and Americans as fast as humanly possible, but contacting 2 Civs out of 17 doesn't help *that* much. And it's debatable how fast I'm really speeding things up since the poor boat has to sail all the way down to the antarctic before it can head all the way back up the east coast.

    Aside from building a city to get the Bronze in Chile, I'm not entirely convinced on what the best use of the land on the west coast strip is. I used to build a city for each Corn tile but lately I switched to giving the southern Corn tile to Cuzco so it could get a little larger. This helps me work the Gems and Mines until I can get a Worker around to the back side of the Andes to clear out the jungle, a process that takes forever.
     
  6. Eqqman

    Eqqman Walrus

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    Oh, I'm not sure if I agree with your opinion on what's the 'single best' spot for a city on the map. It's highly subjective on what you're going for in a city. To me the area between the Tigris-Euphrates is the 'best' since you can make a city that has a bonus tile (mostly floodplains) in nearly every spot of the city's fat cross. Playing as Arabia or Persia I always race to make this one of my early cities as it becomes a hugely powerful commerce site later in the game.
     
  7. justawarlord

    justawarlord Chieftain

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    Darn i just started another thread on a similar topic...

    What's the naturally best Civ to play on the Earth map? Is it America with it's vast continent? Dont the Europeans have to fight tooth and nail to get anywhere?
    Towards the end of the game who usually hangs on?
     
  8. JoeHollywood

    JoeHollywood Warlord

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    okay...three questions to answer...I'll try to get them all without writing a book.

    First...the shortest...the "best" city spot in the game...flood plains are great, but the tigris/euphrates spot lacks in a few ways...the number one way is obviously production...thebes also gets a wheat tile, stone and marble ON FLOOD PLAINS!, and horse, and a mineable desert hill. Sure, it's all subjective as to what the best city spot, but I maintain that if egypt had copper/iron..which they should at least have copper considering that they basically ushered in the use of copper in tools, that it would be the "uber-civ" and would always be my first choice. I respect that people have different opinions as to the "best" city site, but you're not going to change my mind on this one.

    Second, the inca problem...and oh yes, this one is a ***** to harness in. First I settle two west on the coast...it helps so much with the financial trait, not to mention that you're going to need to be a naval power. From there I play a very "odd" inca.

    The tactical advantage of having the panama canal, or at least a pseudo panama canal, is huge. My second city is normally to the north of my capitol and my third is on that canal square...my fourth I totally neglect the copper resources to the south and settle in argentina...I then slowly work my way up the south american coast untill I have the whole continent settled. Now here is the "secret" of inca...they're financial so you want to take advantage of the cottage spam. This is true...for the "internal" south american cities. However the WORKSHOP is your best friend. You will have very low production cities and you need to have at least 2-3 workshopped out cities...is it a waste of great cottage land...yes...do you have an option?...not that I have found yet. Your job till the 1500's or so are to be everyone's friend...accept the fact that you won't have anyone to fight for a while...and that if you decide to go aztec first you're fighting an aggressive civ, same with japan who will have the entire pacific settled as well as being a naval power as well. One last trick...if you're playing MP...you can generally get a cheap tech along with an open borders agreement with england and japan...as they're trying to circumnavigate...and monotheism is worth the shot to cut about 10 turns off their circumnavigate rush.

    now for question 3...I'm going to put that in another post...
     
  9. JoeHollywood

    JoeHollywood Warlord

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    the best civ...

    first off this is very subjective...everyone will have a preference and noone will agree with me on all of this...and that's ok...civ4 is not as "simple" as chess. there is a lot more of the subjective, and that's why we all love it.

    I rate the civs in "tiers"

    Tier 1-rome/england-you have incredible resource area, easily conquered neighbors, and a huge military asset...praetorians/the english channel as natural defense.

    Tier 2-egypt/china/japan/persia-you have great resources, but have either a "thorn" in your side with a nearby civ, have problems with expansion, or lack a precious military asset...like egypt not having metals...china having mongolia...japan being able to establish a foothold in asia...and persia having issues with overexpansion too early or losing the power of its UU.

    Tier 3-france/spain/germany/india-the european civs are simple...you have to contend with rome and england...not fun, india is heavily jungled and has to deal with persia/china.

    Tier 4-russia/america/aztec/greece/mongolia-either land is at a premium, or "good" land is at a premium...you also tend to be next to a civ that's entire early game strategy is about making sure you don't exist.

    Tier 5-arabia/mali/inca-your land sucks...noone likes you...they ignore you till you have built them cities or try to eliminate you right off...you're either a masochist or a badass to play this in multiplayer...when you pull off a win with one of these they sing songs about you in the lobby, etc, etc...they generally aren't fun to play, however there are few things in civ more satisfying than seeing mali tanks, arabian stealth bombers, and incan ICBMs

    well all that's kind of my ranking of the civs...I know people are going to lambast me for putting france so high...however trust me...you can have quite a success with it if you play it well.

    feel free to ask any follow ups or comment appropriately

    Joe
     
  10. JoeHollywood

    JoeHollywood Warlord

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    hey betafor, I almost closed this without replying to you...my apologies...

    as to the fizzling point...for tactical reasons I'll sometimes not even take germany out...the reason is I have to defend one tile to the ne of rome and the "paris" region...other than that I have very little do defend in europe with the exception of naval superiority. However taking out germany, you are obliged to also take out spain, france...whereas taking out spain, france you are not obliged to take out germany...+1 point for flexibility.

    dealing with germany 1 on 1 is a lot easier than dealing with germany 1 on 1 with the potential for it becoming 1 on 2 or 1 on 3 or 1 on 4 or 1 on 5 or 1 on 6 very quickly.

    germany will get axes before rome gets praes if both are equally skilled players.

    its important to look at your GPT loss each city you take...it gets hard to "slow down" with rome because you have 750 gold in your treasury from waxing all the other civs...but that's a short term advantage...play with your slider to see "if you stopped now" what percentage of science would I have to run to break even. An extra 1 or 2 cities is not worth a 20% reduction in science empire wide.

    If I missed anything let me know...

    Joe
     
  11. billwillett

    billwillett Chieftain

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    Joe,

    Thanks for starting this thread. I've played a few earth maps with you - really appreciate the effort it takes to get one of these going.

    Great info and now I'm fired up. I want you to get your computer back!

    Marinus
     
  12. wkndwrrr

    wkndwrrr Warlord

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    Joe- You have mentioned Mali a couple times and how difficult it is, but could you go in depth? Should you go for rapid expansion towards the barbary coast to halt european expansion? Should you go south into unexplored jungles? Should you attack egypt so as to keep Africa to yourself and to get one step closer to evenually controling the oil fields of Arabia, or invade Europe to try and stop Rome from taking over the continent?
     
  13. JoeHollywood

    JoeHollywood Warlord

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    ahh mali...

    I so hate playing this civ, yet I find myself playing it a lot lately.

    lets look at the +'s first...

    ok so mansa is spiritual ( in my opinion the most underated trait in the game )

    ok that was fun...now lets look at the -'s...

    Egypt gets the war chariot, you get the skirmisher...used correctly the skirmisher is a "decent" UU, but it's almost purely defensive, and in the open field loses to the war chariot.

    Egypt gets better land than you.

    Egypt techs faster than you.

    Egypt has the creative trait...so you'll lose a culture war heads up.

    Egypt as human and AI will focus on construction...so they will have cats/war elephants before you.

    You most likely won't have religeon early.

    If you do get religeon early, you're going to tick off either egypt or spain...the two you don't want to tick off.

    All your prime land is jungled.

    With tech trading on you have to be a master diplomat to pull off decent trades...with it off, you will be behind in techs.

    There is no immediate metal ( barbary coast coming in a minute ).

    You have no good "production" city site early.

    Spain, Rome, and Egypt want your land...at least the little bit of good land you do get.

    You have very few happiness resources

    You have very few health resources

    Your capitol is almost all flood plains, at least that of which is not desert.

    And those are just the BIG disadvantages...

    Stay tune for next post with the strat of how to play them...and make all fall before the mighty Mali.
     
  14. JoeHollywood

    JoeHollywood Warlord

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    Ok, let me be specific about the settings this game applies to, whereas some strats can be easily adapted based on settings, this one has to be SERIOUSLY adapted if any are changed...if you want help with different settings, give them to me and I'll post my "best shot"

    Secondly, as I'm not the biggest Mali fan on this map, I don't know specific tile order in some cases, so if I make a mistake, please point it out as I can't access the world map while Best Buy takes its sweet time fixing my PC. Why did I buy a mac laptop again?

    Alright, this is a multi-player game, tech trading off, barbs on normal, quick pace, blazing speed...humans will take rome, england, germany, russia, japan, china, egypt, persia, india, and two american civs.

    Now, I'm not going to take the time to describe all of these "sub-strats" in they're entirety. But you need to understand these concepts and check out the appropriate threads if you're unsure of something.

    First micromanagement...this is the biggest example of micromanaging a civ....more on this later...

    Second...the only way you can win with Mali is through MILITARY might on a multiplayer world map. Blech.

    Third...most of your decisions are made pregame. We can debate these, but you must know your plan pregame, because 20 second turns do not allow a lot of time to "plan" with all the micro'ing you have to do.

    Fourth...diplomacy skills are HUGE.

    Now lets start with teching priorities.

    I generally work a line that involves this...

    1) agriculture
    2) pottery
    3) beelining to iron working
    4) writing/math/construction
    5) code of laws/civil service
    6) machinery
    7) it gets a little flexible from this point on...done well, you may even have a shot at liberalism...not likely though.

    Now for city placement/purpose

    Timbuktu I generally settle one SE...I believe that's the correct spot...it yields you the maximum number of flood plains possible...damn those two corner plots that are desert river rather than floodplains. You will micromanage your capitol almost every turn. They will get almost 0 production, but great food...half of the flood plains will be converted to farms, the other half to cottage. You're going to try to pull off one of the most difficult things to master in civ ( I'm good at it, but sure as hell haven't mastered it )...you're going to run a great person farm AND a cottage/science powerhouse out of timbuktu. This will eventually change to a pure cottage economy in the capitol.

    Ok city #2...and your settler is going to go a long way for this...grin...I think it's exactly 4 tiles due south of where spain gets his settler...AND you have to pull this off before spains culture overlaps africa...if I recall correctly you'll have a sheep and a wheat in this city, and a bunch of hills plains...you get a wine too if I remember right. this is your production city, with the hills mined early and later windmilled. you will be producing skirmishers like crazy from this city, as well as the occasional naval unit.

    City #3...okay this city sucks, and you're going to break a cardinal "rule" when dealing with controling a large land mass. You need to get the iron resource, and to do so you're going to have it overlapping city 2 a fair bit. This will be a production city in name only...it doesn't get much production, but it gets almost no commerce...generally you end up working about 2-3 coast tiles and the iron, if you're lucky this city will pay for itself, but not much more...don't waste time building improvements...other than the lighthouse, and later a theater...you will be building navy and support land units all game from this city.

    Cities 4-5...I think it's 3 SE and one S, and 3 SW and one S...there's no overlap, city 4 will have almost all jungled, grassland, river type tiles...city 5 will have elephants and gems if I remember right...these are what fuel your economy...although there will be plenty of sputtering in the tank.

    Goals of founding the cities in this order...

    1) a good player checks the power graph frequently...you need to get units out, even if it's just skirmishers and spears to deter your neighbors from attacking.

    2) a bad player doesn't check the power graph frequently...if they attack, wait for them to say...WOW how did Mail get so many troops, bleed his stack dry and counter attack with your army...grin.

    3) you NEED metal...just having a spear or axe in your coastal cities will make european civs pass you over as "not worth the effort" and give you time to build what you need for what you need to do later.

    4) you NEED metal...the only defense to egypt is spearmen...they have war chariots and elephants, you will get metal before them, and you will be the one who can be the aggressor if you keep your power graphs even, or even if you are slightly behind.

    5) Madrid is the jewel of the Mali empire...of course now that I'm writing this, this will be more and more difficult to pull off, but the first 4000! years of the game are all designed to pull off an amphibious invasion of spain.

    6) Civics are key to Mali, fortunately you're spiritual...but hereditary rule, caste system, beurocracy, are important, and you'll also switch around a lot as you open more options.

    7) Don't be afraid to use the whip...whereas you won't have great production in africa, you will have decent food. You have to be able to whip, and whip well, and whip often, and whip again.

    8) Do NOT keep your military in a SOD ( stack of doom ), you will be attacking right at the height of the catapult. You need to be able to attack in waves/prongs...and you have to be able to move ALL your ministacks in 30 seconds...grin.

    9) When you attack Madrid...you will have opened up one of the biggest cans of worms you've ever seen...it will be a "backrank" of either spain/germany/rome/or england...its generally poorly defended, but 4 or 5 turns later you're going to get slammed when he shifts directions on you...for this reason I always call Mali the great spoiler. You will also have to defend against a tier higher than you in techs when it comes to units.

    10) Madrid is your staging ground to ENGLAND!...do not fight a land war in europe at this point...you can't hold all borders...but if you've done what I've said so far, you can pull your navy up and have at least a fighting chance for naval superiority in the atlantic and the mediteranian. Once you take england...FOUR great city sites, now the Mali war and economic machine takes foot...of course it 4000 years too late, and the game is nowhere near decided, but all this happens fast and you're suddenly a power in the game...its about at this point that egypt will attack...grin

    11) pray you get lucky, pray you get luckier and use every tactical and strategical trick you can.

    12) taking madrid normally nets you a holy city...make sure to switch to the religeon that izzy founded so you get the intel info...that religeon will have spread a lot and the info you get will be better than any disadvantage from not having that religeon in your key cities.

    I could go on on this one for pages more, but this should be a good starting ground...besides, can't give away all my tricks...grin.

    Here's the disheartening part of playing mali, and it's probobally the only civ this applies to with the possible exception of arabia...

    YOU HAVE TO OUTPLAY ALL OF YOUR NEIGHBORS...

    if you are of equal skill to your neighbors...you're going to lose...there are just too many disadvantages.

    but if you CAN outplay all your neighbors...mwa ha ha ha...what a bragging point to have

    by the way...the time I won a 12 player multiplayer with mali...there was another very strong player in the game. we formed an alliance early that didn't mean much early...but...

    THE MALI/INCA alliance ruled the world...chuckle...what a pair of civs to be the two dominant powers.

    As always...feel free to comment, or question me further on this or any other topic.

    Joe
     
  15. Betafor

    Betafor Dictator

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    You should do some strategy for every civ and make a strategy article
     
  16. wkndwrrr

    wkndwrrr Warlord

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    Yeah, take your time and make it nice and neat, add some pictures and different font sizes, and it will probably get stickied.
     
  17. Nuka-sama

    Nuka-sama See ya! It has been a fun decade!

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    I want to play as a colonial empire, and I wanted to know the best civ for this besides England and Rome.

    I also would preferebly like to play as Inca or Spain, but im not sure, please help!
     
  18. JoeHollywood

    JoeHollywood Warlord

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    wow, I appreciate the compliments guys, but lets examine two things...

    1) As soon as the evil computer mongers finish with my pc...my "off" time will be devoted mostly to thrashing all of you in earth games...grin

    2) If I were to do a strategy article on rome alone, it would probobally take 30 or so pages...and that just gets us to the military tradition age...and I think I'll have my PC back by then...

    What I MAY do,...is use this post ( or put a new one in the appropriate place ) to schedule "earth" games on gamespy...I've found invited players lead to less connectivity issues, and more compitent players. I'd love to actually launch one with 18 some day...

    In the meantime, I'd assume Best Buy won't have my PC for more than 1 more week, so if there are any more questions, feel free to ask...


    Thanks again,

    Joe


    Oh and as for the post of a "colonial" civ, I'm not sure what you mean, can you be more specific?
     
  19. Betafor

    Betafor Dictator

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    1.Best colonial civ would be japan or inca... for obvious reasons...

    2. Joe.. that would be good, but we would have to make it in a diff section than strategy...
    BTW, were you on Tursday night? I could have sworn i saw you in the lobby... Took us an hour and a half to start that game... jeez :p
     
  20. Xenocrates

    Xenocrates Deity

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    Joe I mean this in the nicest possible way:

    I hope your games PC is lost, permanently broken AND stolen AND the insurance company won't pay out, because that was a damn fine piece of writing and I want to see more. Is that a bit selfish of me? :p
     

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