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[BTS] Emperor Shadow Game with Alexander; Help me get better at Emperor!

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Strategy & Tips' started by CGQ, Mar 16, 2020.

  1. CGQ

    CGQ Chieftain

    Aug 11, 2019
    Nope it wasn't your imagination haha. One of the worst starts I ever had in this game, (Though in all fairness I've seen far worse on these forums haha).
    That's why I decided to use it as my shadow game, 'cause I like to punish myself:lol:
    I want to know how to use even poor land to my advantage, and make not only the best of it but later dominate despite of it. This game is almost a metaphor for life; you gotta deal the cards you're given and sometimes you get a crappy hand. That's why I never regenerate map and if I do I always save the "poor" map to play later.

    One thing about plains cow though is the hammers, since they're a 6 yield tile they seem to make good worker-settler making machines :D
  2. CGQ

    CGQ Chieftain

    Aug 11, 2019
    Spoiler Played to Turn 69 :

    Turn 54: New worker from Athens works on cottaging riverside grassland first as I realized that Athens would be size 3 by time he finishes, and can immediately work that cottage for much-needed :commerce:
    I also put my EP points towards Hammy.

    Thebes is in no rush to grow as it's working the oasis and there aren't really much tiles for it to work anyways right now and a city is only as big as the good tiles it can work.

    Turn 57: Worker finishes new cottage and heads to Thebes to improve corn:

    Turn 59: BW is finished, I start teching Writting. Found two sources of copper. Guess this map isn't so bad after all? :D

    Interestingly an unusual place for copper, and right where I built a cottage. I'm going to chop that forest then build a cottage for Corinth to work before I mine that copper.

    Sparta grows to size 3 and works Athens lake tile in the meantime

    Corinth at Turn 59:

    Athens grows into size 3 and works the newly built cottage:

    Turn 60:
    Worker now improving Thebes Corn. Note the second source of copper in the tundra:

    Turn 61:

    Found source of Silver up north:

    Turn 62:
    First warrior barb appears. My lack of proper spawn-busting in the NE area is biting me in the butt. I position my near warrior to fight him.

    Forest chop gives 20:hammers: in Corinth towards settler. Worker cottages that tile for the town to work before then he will hook up the copper.

    Turn 63:
    Warrior closing in on cows. Hoping he decides to attack me instead.

    Turn 64:
    Barb warrior is arrogant and attacks my +10% strength warrior in forest thankfully. I take him on with no damage. He now heads NE to spawn-bust my next city location.
    Also Worker near Thebes finishes corn. He is going to cottage the riverside grassland SE of Thebes next.

    Turn 65:
    Uh oh. Barb archers now head my way. I immediately revolt to slavery here to whip up a warrior to save Thebes. The warrior on the hill is too far to make it back in time unfortunately.
    Shame I can't use those horses yet, chariots would really come in handy right about now...

    Turn 66:
    I escort worker to safety and have him cottage the aforementioned tile.
    Now a barb warrior appears behind the barb archer. I pop 1-whip the warrior. Either way Thebes was working an unimproved tile anyways at least...

    I confide in the fact that my emergency warrior not only on a hill in a city with city defense bonus, but also the 10% from aggressive leader. I hold my breath and click next turn...

    Turn 67:

    I discover Writing and move on to Alphabet.
    The warrior kills the archer though he took a lot of damage.
    Now there's still the barb warrior to deal with. I'm guessing after seen his archer buddies get ripped apart in front of them, the little bastards decide to go on top of the corn instead. The corn that I literally just finished improving 2 turns ago...

    My other warrior is still one turn away and the only protection now is my injured warrior and scout who luckily made it back in time and they head on to Thebes, so it should be safe, though I may lose that corn. Either way my worker should be able to fix that at least.

    Turn 68:
    Barb warrior kills the scout, which buys my warrior the one turn it needs to get to Thebes. A monument will one day be built in his name for sacrificing himself and giving his life to save Thebes.

    Meanwhile, Corinth also had a barb archer to deal with. He killed one of my warriors and is headed to the copper my worker just started on. I pop-1 whip a warrior there. Settler was finished around Turn 66-67 and is carefully moving north to snatch that corn NE. Another settler is chopped/built on Athens at size 3, while worker builds another cottage. Another worker will chop worker north of Athens.
    NW of Sparta, worker chops riverside grassland to build another worker probably. He will cottage that land after the chop for Sparta to work instead of lake.

    Turn 69:
    The barb warrior really wanted Thebes and through his willful ignorance of all my obvious advantages, he attacks Thebes in vain and dies. He doesn't pillage the corn farm either.

    The injured barb archer on the copper village pillages the village. The village that I was going to remove for the copper anyways.
    I send my warrior south and at 52% odds manage to kill the archer. The whipped warrior now serves as MP for Corinth and the injured warrior heals.


    Attached Files:

  3. CGQ

    CGQ Chieftain

    Aug 11, 2019
    Spoiler Played to Turn 75 :

    Turns 70: Argos is settled and worker from Sparta heads up to improve corn besides it.
    Turn 71-72: More chopping, and more cottages. Thebes is working the new cottage comfortably at size 3 as it works away whip anger.

    5th settler coming from Athens to snag the cow and later clam and second copper. It will share the corn with Thebes until the cow is finsihed.
    Worker arrives at cow 1 turn too early so he roads while he waits for settler.

    Worker will chop granary and Athens slow-builds library to grow to size 4 and work the other cottage. I will need a warrior there for MP happiness soon.

    Turn 73:
    Workers start working on copper mine, while a barb warrior is confronted by my warrior:

    Turn 74:
    Barb warrior moves 1W and mine moves 1NW. Looks like that warrior wants my undefended Argos.

    Turn 75:
    Granary chopped by thebes, Knossos using the corn to grow into the cows which should be improved by then.
    The barb warrior attacked me and mine survived and killed it.

    Meanwhile, Sparta finishes the cottage and will work it for Athens. Things seem to be good so far. What do you guys think? @sampsa @Fippy ?


    Attached Files:

  4. sampsa

    sampsa Ghost

    Jan 1, 2006
    Your game has improved a lot I'd say. Situations without any extra :)-resources are very tricky though and granaries are mostly a trap you fell into. If you think about it - what good are they doing for you if your city is stagnating building a worker? That 60:hammers: investment (the granary) is giving you absolutely nothing. That's why it would've been better to grow to :)-cap and stagnate building settlers/workers, aiming to work cottages. This way you save all the :hammers: you've now sunk into rather useless granaries. Say two :)-resources would turn the thing upside down - then granaries are great and you should get them up asap and WHIP settlers/workers, because that's very efficient.

    In your situation, monarchy is probably the best tech there is, but maybe you can get via trade later.
    CGQ likes this.
  5. CGQ

    CGQ Chieftain

    Aug 11, 2019
    Ohh...I never thought of that! I always thought granaries were only for cities with little food but I didn’t fully understand granaries until recently.

    I’m gonna replay the turns and avoid granaries, except for Thebes which could be a whipping pit but then again there’s the low happy cap so maybe not there either.

    Or alternatively, I could whip two more settlers and build two cities: one to hook ivory south and the silver up north and the others build workers to immediately have it hooked up, and that’s assuming there’s good near by those spots (haven’t explored the area around yet), That would give me the +2 happiness that I would need to make those granaries I built worth something haha.

    Also what do I do about border pop? I really want the horses. Should I build library in Athens, Corinth and Thebes or all cities?
  6. sampsa

    sampsa Ghost

    Jan 1, 2006
    Sure you can replay if you want to. I think Athens is the city where granary is good, because the city has a higher :)-cap being the capital. Thebes, no, because of the low :)-cap and river, which means you have nice cottages there. Maybe you can fit in a 2-pop whip somewhere helped with a chop, depends.

    If you don't want to replay, your plan of grabbing more :)-resources is sensible. Probably a library in good cities will pay off.
    CGQ likes this.
  7. CGQ

    CGQ Chieftain

    Aug 11, 2019
    Spoiler Played to turn 115 :

    Yes, that's a large turn-set from 75 to 115 but damn it this game is too addicting!:lol:
    Plus I'm feeling much more confident now, and I'm willing to replay turn-sets. I saved nearly every turn :)

    I only built granaries in Athens, Sparta and sadly Thebes since I couldn't undo those since I'd have to go way too far back.

    During this turn-set, I settled Mycenae (7th city) to get the clams. I figured with PH mines it would be a good production city to make units and in the time being could build wealth/research. I chopped out the fishing boat then built worker in the meantime.

    Shortly after, I settled my 8th city, Pharsalos just south of Corinth to snag the elephants. I immediately sent workers to the area to both hook up elephants and chop a library for the culture and scientists there. Best part is that it shared the corn with Corinth so I was able to grow it and 1-pop whip the library with the chops. Now the :)-cap went up by +1 in all cities! (I got IW from Caesar after trading Alpha)

    Economy at this point is definitely suffering from lack of currency. I finally get it around 175 BC, is that too late to get it? Should I have been able to get it way earlier?

    I get out two more settlers, one in Athens and one in Sparta. The one from Athens went south and settled the 9th city, Ephesus, just south of Pharasalos so Hannibal doesn't get his hands on the other elephants and the grassland cow is nice. I actually ended up losing that spot by 1 turn so I went back to replay it and used my pre-chops in Athens and was able to snag that spot in 225 BC. No elephants for him!

    Shortly after, with the other settler from Sparta, I snagged a really nice spot, Halicarnassus our 10th city (I'll call it Hali for short lol) in 150 BC. Aside from useless tundra, it would be a great whipping pit. Grassland pigs and fish in 2nd ring. I chopped and 1-pop whipped a library for border pop.

    I switch cities to research after alpha, then wealth after currency. Knossos is building a settler to snatch this crabs/silver spot:

    At border pop I'd get the other silver which means I'd have 2 silver instead of just one. Great for trading I imagine :) (Plus being along the river means I don't need to build road right away.)

    Trade I made:
    Apha for IW and Archery

    Traded Currency for Sailing, Math and 50 much-needed Gold.

    Also gave him mysticism for 45 gold. Strange he hasn't researched that tech yet:confused:
    That gives me the gold needed to get Priesthood then Monarchy in 3-4 turns.

    Were these good trades?

    State of the Empire at 1 AD:

    Here is Caesar's capital:

    Hannibal's capital:

    The barbs are a huge pain in the ass, and I can't even imagine them on immortal let alone Deity! Hell I don't even wanna know what "Raging barbs" on Deity must look like haha. :spear:

    I wonder if anyone actually tried that before here?
    Either way, once I whipped out a couple Phalanxes and that essentially solved my barb problem. Plus the chariots from finally hooking up horses really helps a whole lot!

    I finally got Monarchy in 50 BC and revolted to Hereditary Rule by 1 AD.

    Note I also built an academy in Corinth since it has much better commerce. Should I have built it in my capital? Considering that, should I move the capital to Corinth and build a palace there?

    What do I do now? What should I tech next?

    If I made any big mistakes I'll go back and replay from any point. Do you think this is a good map for a communist "workshop economy" given all those 1-:hammers: plains? I'm a little concerned about our Roman neighbor, he's got that red fist, and I'm not sure if it's me he's plotting against or Hannibul? I have my EP on Hannibul so I can see what he's researching. I must note that Caesar did send a spy to one of my cities and got caught.
    Also note: No religions have spread to them which sucks because of happiness and culture reasons.

    So here's my possible plans for the next turns after this:

    1 - Elephant/catapult rush. I feel Caesar and his runaway cities would be a good target. I feel it's late for this though but then again, or any prereqs (Monarchy) for Feudalism.

    2 - Found Confucianism? Though since Hanny is gonna beat me to it at this point so I may have to go back to just after I discovered currency and I could go straight to CoL and convert to Confucianism. Plus since neither of my neighbors have any religion maybe I could spread it and use it to my advantage perhaps? None of the AI so far have Code of Laws yet, which is kind of strange.:wow:

    3 - Get Metal Casting and spam workshops and build forges. Is that feasable?

    4 - Anything else?:king:


    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Mar 19, 2020
  8. sampsa

    sampsa Ghost

    Jan 1, 2006
    I'd say currency is a bit overrated. I've played a few maps recently on lower difficulties and I think for example monarchy is a much better "economical" tech, because it allows growth and growth allows you to work more cottages.

    Yes, though not sure on giving currency away, if you got nothing for it from the other dude?

    The main reason for building an academy is it's great synergy with bureaucracy. So that's why you should probably put it into your capital or to a city that will be your capital. Not sure if Corinth has the :hammers: to ever make it.

    The most important factor now is a plotting neighbor. Maybe feudalism isn't horrible in this sense?

    I think your strategy so far doesn't rhyme with elepult. It's more of a "found 4 cities to take some more by force"-thing. Your setup is more of a cuirassier kinda empire. A religion would be great indeed! MC is for forges, but they are probably not that important right now... Workshops are horrible since you are lacking all the techs boosting them: guilds, chemistry, communism (and caste for one extra :hammers:).

    So I'd say priority 1: Don't lose the game if Augustus declares 2: Tech towards cuirassiers growing your cities and working mainly cottages.

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