Emperoror Quick Speed, Trying to get better

asmith

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Mar 21, 2009
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I am posting this in the hope that I can get some tips on how to play the game better. My preference is usually science victories, so I hope that someone can point me in the right direction if I am going wrong.

The scene is: Isabella on a small continent with no other AI around. There is also a natural Wonder.

I have got the initial save and the save just before the end. I also have a save at 1690 which I have not uploaded, but taken screenshots of. Social policies, religion and cities as screenshots at various times.

In terms of what I did, I went Tradition. Built two scouts, bought a settler from finding the natural wonder at the top of the continent. Settled at Barcelona. Meanwhile I was building the Temple of Artemis, my need for military not required anymore (In demographics I stayed at number 7 for most of the first 130 turns).

Barcelona's first citizen was working the natural wonder - giving me 4 food and 8 faith. This meant I did not need to build shrines as per normal, as this would be my faith generator. Religion wise as per screenshot. The +4 faith per natural wonder religious belief helped a lot.



Did not try to explore anywhere. Just stayed within my continent. Did the food sending via caravans and ships. Built wonders, used my faith to buy pagodas and mosques to solve happiness issues that would have been caused by the growth. Discovered by Denmark in about 1200, then the world congress was found in about the 1500s. I was already ahead in science by the time I reached Renaissance era (from demographics I was number 1).

This is what I was looking like at 1690:
Isabella 1690 turn 163.jpg


Social Policies 1690.jpg


Social Policies 1690 2.jpg




After this, it was just a case of the tech path.
It went something like this:
First four techs, luxury techs, construction, Philosophy, Guilds, Education, Accoustics, Machinery, Printing Press, Scientific Theory, Radio (Turn 135 for Ideology which I chose Freedom), Astronomy, Replaceable Parts, Plastics, Railroad, Refrigeration, Satellites, Mobile Tactics, Advanced Ballistics, Particle Physics, Nanotechnology.
Game finished by turn 235.

After getting Plastics, I used the Freedom Social Policy to get 6 infantry for free, and paid for 3 others. After that it was just a case of upgrading them to Mechanised infantry to keep me at number 1 for military (and thus safe from attack).

Screenshots from near the end:
Isabella 1922 turn 231.jpg



social policies at end1.jpg


social policies at end2.jpg



Any hints or tips would be most welcome. Or even better if someone plays through it with some screenshots, preferably going for the same sort of victory type.
 

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mbbcam

Prince
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I'm no expert, but I think if I found myself alone on an island like that I would try to make my expands coastal (so I could use Cargo Ships) and try to get Caravels as fast as possible. Finding the other civs gives a discount on Techs they have discovered. Plus other advantages. There also seems to be room for a fourth city on the island, which might be a good idea.
 

asmith

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Mar 21, 2009
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Thanks for the advice. So I made the 4th city and used lots of cargo ships to get my cities much larger (most ended in the 40s population wise). Eventually finished the game on turn 220. Which is definitely an improvement, but it makes me wonder if I can get it even lower, without having to go on a conquering spree. (Which I could easily do in the mid 1500s as by that time I have infantry and most other people have knights).

Any other thoughts that you think might help?
 

mbbcam

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Again, I'm no expert, but I would think that on Emperor it ought not to be difficult to conquer the entire map. If you decide to use conquest, you would probably find it best to complete the Commerce, Liberty or Honor tree, rather than opening so many different trees and taking only a few policies in each. On higher levels you usually need to be ruthlessly focused on a few trees.

Have a look at Consentient's guide to warfare, if you need tips: http://forums.civfanatics.com/showpost.php?p=13820009&postcount=1
 

rickyvaughn

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Jan 22, 2022
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Early game looks fine. Why Guilds before Edu? You save money to buy library in last city for earlier NC and to rush university in cap? How many GS did you make naturally? How many did you plant? How many GS did you buy with faith? What did you use Oxford on? Pretty sure you don’t need several Mech Inf on Emp to stay safe on isolated start. Hard to tell where improvements can be made. Just seems like you may need some harder beelines to key techs and more thoughtful use of GS.
 

asmith

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Mar 21, 2009
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22
Thanks for the feedback. Guilds before edu because I wanted the Machu Pichu to boost gold production.
I did save money to buy libraries for the earlier NC and bought some universities too.
Natural GS - I am not sure - I did not count. Faith based probably about 4 in total.
Oxford was used to get Radio (at that time without any research it would have taken 9 turns) and bring myself into the Modern Era.

What would you suggest I do with respect to the tech order?

@mbbcam - I may go back and grab a mid save and try conquering the whole world. I have seen Consentient's guide to warfare before but I am still not great at warfare.
 

mbbcam

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I am lousy at warfare, too, but Spain gives you two unique units that are quite good (from what I can remember), so it looks like Spain is designed for conquest. Spain might be better on a Pangaea map where there is less need for a navy. If you are isolated until beyond the time when the unique units are effective, it nullifies any advantage from having them.
 

Tiberiu

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Hi and thank you for the map. I decided to play it too. Now t139 after first session. I wanted a food focus strat and it's going nicely. I delayed pottery until I got all desired wonders - Artemis, Petra, Collosus, Hanging G, also built Mausoleum and Great Lighthouse but maybe this was a mistake as a merchant spawned. But I was broke from debts to neighbour so a customs house was great for economy. bulbed natural engineer into Macchu. First to religion with fertility+plowshares, enhanced with feed the world. Circus Maximus before libraries. t139 cities are 35/30/20/18. 4 city Liberty right side+ full tradition. just built Forbidden palace and now Sistine and Taj mahal next. hoping SV before t200 if diplomacy and spying continues well. Empire is filthy rich now from macchu, colossus, tithe, and city connections. Will post more detailed report and screens.

Until then, some feedback.
You are clearly easily cruising through Emperor, lol. But as a glaring mistake is exploration neglect, and especially so with Spain which has highest incentive to explore well.
I do agree map limits the exploration but there is a workaround. i used my 2 initial scouts ( bo was scout-scout-Artemis) for barb xp farm to get promotion scouting 2 on both. They are very useful for scouting the areas and after astronomy they are also very good to be sent overseas. The cost of this is very low but the rewards are very big and have high potential. I can't see any downside to exploration especially with how it can help science by making some techs cost less.

More feedback: why piety opener? i can't see any reason for it, esp since you have mosque belief and no need of shrines as you pointed out.

city placement: it's probably suboptimal to place Seville like that. with coastal capital on small island or continent, it's usually best to keep all cities coastal for sea routes and to be able to build frigates if you want/need to. For example I placed my Seville directly on that Cattlle.
 
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vadalaz

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I've started playing this map as well. Here's how the early game went for me:

Settled in place, Pottery first, Scout - Monument - Granary - Worker in the capital. Bought a Settler with the Sri Pada money, planted Barcelona in the obvious spot and had it build a Worker first.

I don't remember the exact order of things after that. The general idea was to go for a 2-city NC then expand to 5 cities, and some other goals included:

- Exploration to meet AIs and trade away all these Pearls, and to find CSs and NWs. I bought a Trireme in Barcelona once I'd researched Sailing and built another one in Madrid. It might've been a better play to get three Triremes actually and demand tribute from a bunch of CSs
- Fast Optics because these cities really wanted Lighthouses
- Worker steals from Kiev's sheep tile required a mobile unit so I built a Chariot Archer pretty early. Ended up stealing 3 workers from Kiev before making peace. The Chariot was good for barb control also, and can be upgraded into a Conquistador later for scouting
- Temple of Artermis was something I wanted but didn't prioritize over other things. Managed to get it in the early T40s before starting NC

Spoiler Turn 60 screenshot :
20220211110508_1.jpg
Not sure I'll get Petra or the other two wonders, but it's worth trying. I probably shouldn't have made peace with Kiev and farmed a Great General instead to steal the Sheep at some point. Had to declare war on Brazil to get past their borders, made peace and became friends soon after. Full Tradition, religion is OWN / Tithe / Pagodas / Mosques / Itinerant Preachers.
 

asmith

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Joined
Mar 21, 2009
Messages
22
Hi and thank you for the map. I decided to play it too. Now t139 after first session. I wanted a food focus strat and it's going nicely. I delayed pottery until I got all desired wonders - Artemis, Petra, Collosus, Hanging G, also built Mausoleum and Great Lighthouse but maybe this was a mistake as a merchant spawned. But I was broke from debts to neighbour so a customs house was great for economy. bulbed natural engineer into Macchu. First to religion with fertility+plowshares, enhanced with feed the world. Circus Maximus before libraries. t139 cities are 35/30/20/18. 4 city Liberty right side+ full tradition. just built Forbidden palace and now Sistine and Taj mahal next. hoping SV before t200 if diplomacy and spying continues well. Empire is filthy rich now from macchu, colossus, tithe, and city connections. Will post more detailed report and screens.

Wow at getting a science victory before 200. How did you get your cities so big - 35 is massive at t139. Is that because of fertility, feed the world and plowshares which massively increases food growth if your playing peaceful? Did you not have major happiness problems? I see no happiness buildings from your religion. Or had you discovered other AIs by then and were buying up their luxuries?
Are those wonders typically ones the AI does not go for? I almost always go for Artemis and Hanging Gardens, but never thought to try and go for Collosus or petra (obviously need desert for this one).

Did you go Liberty first, or tradition first follow by Liberty? (I assume you chose the right side of Liberty for the extra happiness and culture).


You are clearly easily cruising through Emperor, lol. But as a glaring mistake is exploration neglect, and especially so with Spain which has highest incentive to explore well.
Emperoror is a good level for me. I can just about recover from even a bad start to just about win. Immortal I can beat one in every 10 games. But I do enjoy the freedom of Emperoror more - it means I don't have to do X Y Z each and every time to win. I have noticed the higher the rank I go, the less freedom it feels like I have in what I can build, in what I can do. It starts to feel formulaic.

Is that because of the 500 gold from finding natural wonders? Given that I normally reach the renaissance era by turn 105 (in order to get a caravel) it never seems that worthwhile by then.


I do agree map limits the exploration but there is a workaround. i used my 2 initial scouts ( bo was scout-scout-Artemis) for barb xp farm to get promotion scouting 2 on both. They are very useful for scouting the areas and after astronomy they are also very good to be sent overseas. The cost of this is very low but the rewards are very big and have high potential. I can't see any downside to exploration especially with how it can help science by making some techs cost less.

Were you not already so far ahead in the tech game by the time you got astronomy that there was no point in sending them to visit others? I thought it only helps if other AIs know techs that you do not know. Although I will admit, while I rushed to Radio some of them did seem to be going towards dynamite.

More feedback: why piety opener? i can't see any reason for it, esp since you have mosque belief and no need of shrines as you pointed out.

Honestly I am not sure why, come to think of it. Clearly a mistake.


city placement: it's probably suboptimal to place Seville like that. with coastal capital on small island or continent, it's usually best to keep all cities coastal for sea routes and to be able to build frigates if you want/need to. For example I placed my Seville directly on that Cattlle.

Okay so keep them on the coast so that way I can send cargo ships of food to each of my cities.

Thank you so much for all the feedback. I intend to try the map again over the weekend (I will post the results here) and see if I can get better and better.
 

asmith

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Joined
Mar 21, 2009
Messages
22
I've started playing this map as well. Here's how the early game went for me:

Settled in place, Pottery first, Scout - Monument - Granary - Worker in the capital. Bought a Settler with the Sri Pada money, planted Barcelona in the obvious spot and had it build a Worker first.

That is pretty much what I did with the money - buy a settler. I think I went Granary first for Barcelona. Probably a mistake.


I don't remember the exact order of things after that. The general idea was to go for a 2-city NC then expand to 5 cities, and some other goals included:
How long did it take you to get to 2 city NC - getting to Philosphy would have taken at least 30 turns? Or is there something more to it that I don't know. That is assuming you tech straight to it.



- Exploration to meet AIs and trade away all these Pearls, and to find CSs and NWs. I bought a Trireme in Barcelona once I'd researched Sailing and built another one in Madrid. It might've been a better play to get three Triremes actually and demand tribute from a bunch of CSs
- Fast Optics because these cities really wanted Lighthouses
I didn't think Tiremes could go into the Ocean? Just those channels near the coasts mostly. How were you able to explore? I get Exploration gives you extra movement on the tiremes, but does it also do something with Oceans too?


- Worker steals from Kiev's sheep tile required a mobile unit so I built a Chariot Archer pretty early. Ended up stealing 3 workers from Kiev before making peace. The Chariot was good for barb control also, and can be upgraded into a Conquistador later for scouting
- Temple of Artermis was something I wanted but didn't prioritize over other things. Managed to get it in the early T40s before starting NC
That is a lot of workers stolen from Kiev.

Had to declare war on Brazil to get past their borders, made peace and became friends soon after. Full Tradition, religion is OWN / Tithe / Pagodas / Mosques / Itinerant Preachers.

Pagodas and mosques explains why you do not have any happiness issues.
 

Tiberiu

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I am happy you are playing too Vadalaz. I will be able to draw many conclusions based on the comparison of our games because I've made an amazing game up to now and if I don't make a better finish time, I never will. Or I will lower my assessment of Fertility rites based on this.

A question or two for you @vadalaz . I am at a point where I can go straight to Research Labs - maybe oxford Radio, maybe keep it for Sattelites, my science is very high without Rationalism.
However I am always tempted to instead do things like take Aesthetics and Exploration to build Uffizzi and Louvre, etc... especially since I can make them in 4 turns with my 40 pop capital. But I am not very able to assess whether such enterprises help to get a faster victory or not. On one hand, the golden ages and extra culture, gold, etc, help keep my empire going. On the other hand, taking Exploration and Aesthetics openers instead of Rationalism or Scholasticism from Patronage means science output is lower for a while.

What do you think?

I was on turn 127 earlier, not 139. I am continuing now and this is my turn 139 attached below... really amazing empire I have to say, @asmith - game went flawless until now in almost all aspects. Check out how much difference good exploration makes if you want to. Here is the empire screenshot too:

Spoiler :

139_empire.jpg




While I was posting I saw @asmith posted too so I will now reply to that.

Wow at getting a science victory before 200. How did you get your cities so big - 35 is massive at t139. Is that because of fertility, feed the world and plowshares which massively increases food growth if your playing peaceful? Did you not have major happiness problems? I see no happiness buildings from your religion. Or had you discovered other AIs by then and were buying up their luxuries?
Are those wonders typically ones the AI does not go for? I almost always go for Artemis and Hanging Gardens, but never thought to try and go for Collosus or petra (obviously need desert for this one).

35 pop is ok but not really special on t139 with this setup. As I said earlier, I am in fact 40 pop in turn 139 (was confused and made error in report, it was only turn 127 at that point). But I did not have ally with any Maritime city states and not a single We love the king. With all the food bonuses and pumping sea routes, a more normal range would be 45-50. Plus, I played the first ~100 turns in unhappiness so I grew slowly (didn't improve Pearls to make sure I catch both Collosus and Petra - the logic was that the extra food from 2 caravan slots will slowly "catch up" the lost food during unhappiness.

[edit - about food: Temple of Artemis bonus applies to ALL food so it is much better than the bonus of Fertility Rites and Swords into plowshares which applies only to the extra food that remains after citizens eat their 2 apples. So yea, most extra growth comes from that. ]

Happines IS a problem with this kind of approach. Almost all my gold (including wealth-based debt) goes into buying happiness - even for 28 gpt... or paying CSs for them. Please note that I consider Swords into Plowshares a weak belief and only take it for fun. Anything else is better basically, because SiP is not only weak in itself, but the small bonus is also overkill most of the times - happiness being the limiting growth factor and not food.

Did you go Liberty first, or tradition first follow by Liberty? (I assume you chose the right side of Liberty for the extra happiness and culture).

I went Tradition Opener > Liberty Opener > Liberty Worker > Tradition 15% > etc with the mention that Monarchy should come before Landed Elite. I also built Aqueducs in capital and the other big city, and deleted them before finishing Tradition. Waiting to complete Tradition would have lost too much food, maybe 5 lower pop.

Emperoror is a good level for me. I can just about recover from even a bad start to just about win. Immortal I can beat one in every 10 games. But I do enjoy the freedom of Emperoror more - it means I don't have to do X Y Z each and every time to win. I have noticed the higher the rank I go, the less freedom it feels like I have in what I can build, in what I can do. It starts to feel formulaic.

Yes, I understand this. I assume you also play fast because otherwise I would expect you to have a better win rate even on Immortal based on my impressions of your pictures. I am tempted to say based on your report that you should have no difficulty playing Deity if you take your time and accept to deal with the frustration of Deity's unfair advantages. But of course we should play what we like and what is fun for us.

Is that because of the 500 gold from finding natural wonders? Given that I normally reach the renaissance era by turn 105 (in order to get a caravel) it never seems that worthwhile by then.

We also get some gold - even 100 is useful, and also more happiness. But I think it's good to know as early as possible where the wonders are. Because for example if you discover a really good natural wonder, you may even want to send a settler there. But overall there are many more advantages to making contact with as many CSs and civs as possible..... earlier quests (barb+workers are very nice and happen often early), more info means more informed strategical decisions that we take... also it is always good to have vision on the civ Capitals to see what wonder they are building so that you don't fail any wonder. Having more civs to buy/sell stuff is also quite helpful. If they are close, maybe they will even send a caravan.

Were you not already so far ahead in the tech game by the time you got astronomy that there was no point in sending them to visit others? I thought it only helps if other AIs know techs that you do not know. Although I will admit, while I rushed to Radio some of them did seem to be going towards dynamite.

You are correct with regards to the tech discount, because it is emperor, I became leader on 36% literacy and in fact my spy couldn't even steal from anybody. So no tech discount but being able to buy luxes for quests/ king days is still important.
I like to rush Radio too, usually with Oxford. :)

Thank you so much for all the feedback. I intend to try the map again over the weekend (I will post the results here) and see if I can get better and better.

I am always happy to talk strategies. If you allow me to express maybe an unpopular opinion, I think that playing same game doesn't really help us become better, it can be good to make some experimentations with Policies/tech paths or whatever.
But the thing is that when you play with map knowledge, all your decisions are biased... My principle is that any map can only be played exactly 1 time that matters. Replays don't count. But it is just my opinion that I share and this doesn't mean other people can't disagree or have fun playing same map, of course. I think the mystery of an unknown map is what leads to better decisions being employed.

I will report back with the endgame report and look forward to yours.
 

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vadalaz

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A question or two for you @vadalaz . I am at a point where I can go straight to Research Labs - maybe oxford Radio, maybe keep it for Sattelites, my science is very high without Rationalism.
However I am always tempted to instead do things like take Aesthetics and Exploration to build Uffizzi and Louvre, etc... especially since I can make them in 4 turns with my 40 pop capital. But I am not very able to assess whether such enterprises help to get a faster victory or not. On one hand, the golden ages and extra culture, gold, etc, help keep my empire going. On the other hand, taking Exploration and Aesthetics openers instead of Rationalism or Scholasticism from Patronage means science output is lower for a while.
If it delays Rationalism, then I'd say it's not worth doing. I think they're interesting options for filler policies in Medieval era though:

- Exploration has good policies for coastal empires, and the extra movement for ships isn't terrible either if you plan on conquering cities (and then the +3 hammer policy helps those cities catch up). Louvre is unfortunately not on the optimal tech path, but maybe you could squeeze it in after Plastics and before starting Apollo if you don't have any Great Artists left to start another Golden Age.
- Aesthetics opener could potentially give you an extra Great Writer to burn, essentially paying for itself. Also makes it easier to chain Golden Ages and potentially allows for a longer chain as well. Uffizi is on the right tech path which is nice.

Mercantilism (Commerce), Scholasticism (probably not too impressive on Emperor though?) and Piety opener are all good filler policies as well. I think all of them can work well with some planning. I usually just go for Mercantilism though.

How long did it take you to get to 2 city NC - getting to Philosphy would have taken at least 30 turns? Or is there something more to it that I don't know. That is assuming you tech straight to it.
I finished NC on turn 50, which seems a little late for a 2-city NC on Quick speed, so 3- or 4-city NC probably made more sense here. I made tech detours for Optics, Wheel and Mining.

I didn't think Tiremes could go into the Ocean? Just those channels near the coasts mostly. How were you able to explore? I get Exploration gives you extra movement on the tiremes, but does it also do something with Oceans too?
Yes, triremes can only explore along the coast. There is such a connection to the north of our starting continent though. With triremes I was able to meet 3 AIs, some CSs, and find two NWs (4 happiness and 200 gold for Spain). Now they're just waiting to be upgraded to Caravels.
 

Tiberiu

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Thanks for the insights Vadalaz. I suspected as such. Seems that rationalism is too good to delay a lot of time. Still, I did just that and I think I still have a good shot of finishing before turn 200, only a single setback so far in that my International Games proposal was rejected at the World Congress :D

turn 178 update before final session
Spoiler turn178 :


Continuing, my attempt to use spies to steal the lower techs have failed, and only managed to steal Steel, at a point when I was teching it myself in 0.5 turns. No big deal, however, but I went to Refrigeration before the normal tech path so it should mean a small setback overall. But at least cities have Hospitals and grow each 2-3 turns, with 80-100 food each.
I just bulbed my stash of 4 writers for 13.000 culture and went deep into some policies from Aesthetics and Exploration to fix the economy in order to get some cash via loans to bribe a few more CSs. Now I have some good Culture and Happiness. In a permanent golden age since turn 149 until the end of the game with help of Universal Suffrage.
4 more turns of World Fair after which culture will go down but my next policy comes from Statue of Liberty in 2 turns and I'll take Rationalism's 25% for Scientist. I have 2 Scientist and 4 more ready to come out, plus 1 from Porcelain and 2 from Hubble.

Bulbing them around turn 195 should give me all the techs required to win SV. Now it's a matter of whether I can actually build/buy the parts in 5 turns after that. I need to also take Freedom's Space Procurements but I think I can do it with another writer bulb. I can squeeze in Sydney Opera House too. Maybe I should bulb 1 scientist right away to start building Research Labs faster.
I'm curious to see if my calculations will prove right. It's now pretty certain that my last round of Food Cargo was wrong, should have switched them all to production earlier. Also I am now sure that an extra city, either on Copper or on the Marble would have been a boost to the empire, if it was built early. On quick speed it is too late to do it now.

edit: also it is clear 2 Merchants spawning were actually a negative overall since they should have been Engineers or Scientists.


t178_update.jpg


 
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vadalaz

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I'm on turn 110

Spoiler T110 screens :
20220211212840_1.jpg

20220211212849_1.jpg


20220211212904_1.jpg


- Got Petra, HG, Colossus, Oracle, HS, GLH, Mausoleum, LToP
- Missed Borobudur, Chichen Itza, Notre Dame, Machu Picchu
- Got Mercantilism pre-Renaissance, synced next policy timing with Astronomy and opened Rationalism
- Mercantilism was immediately useful for a University in Madrid and an Aqueduct in Toledo
- Upgraded to Caravels and started exploring the world
- Astronomy - Metal Casting and Guilds - Navigation - Printing Press - Sci Theory
- Proposed World's Fair for the Congress

I traded with the AIs for Iron, bought three Galleasses and upgraded them to Frigates. Then I found out there was only one coastal AI capital to take, Jakarta, which had no wonders. Still better than nothing though, and that city's borders have expanded so much that it actually has three unique luxuries, including the seemingly rare Copper. Just need to wait out the resistance, annex and buy a couple of workers in the city, because the AIs just don't improve tiles for whatever reason. Might want to farm a Great Admiral for a CS quest as well.

6 cities still isn't enough though, so I built a land army as well and sent them to Constantinople, which has Chichen and Machu Picchu. Bribed Theodora to attack Carthage a few turns prior to landing on their continent myself and joining the fun. My army consists of 6 crossbows, a Landsknecht and a Conquistador; I figured this should be enough to take out any Emperor AI at that point of the game.
 
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asmith

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Wanted to ask, are Research agreements worthwhile when your far ahead of your AI opponents? I realise it gives you 8 turns worth of research, but I am assuming the reverse is true too (and that is many more techs to your AI opponents). So I am never sure whether to do research agreements. Any thoughts?
 

vadalaz

Emperor
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1,426
I won on turn 153:
Spoiler Screen :
20220212123523_1.jpg


Would've been a couple of turns faster if I either generated more faith or noticed that Pedro had proposed Arts Funding on the first Congress. I downvoted it with all my delegates but that still wasn't enough.

Started spamming trading posts around the time I reached Sci Theory. Oxforded Radio T119, took Freedom, timed it with a natural policy as well for instant Universal Suffrage and captured Constantinople with Chichen for super long Golden Ages. I burned all my Great Artists right then, but it seems I should've started a bit earlier as I still had 17 turns of GA after victory.

Industrialization after Radio, then Plastics beeline. Built Big Ben and Statue of Liberty in the capital while the expos took care of World's Fair. Had enough cash to buy labs in all 7 cities, and eventually all other specialist buildings too.

Bulbing scheme was the usual 3 GSs for Ballistics, Electronics, Radar and Rocketry (overflow to Combustion), then Rationalism finisher for Satellites, Madrid and Barcelona build Hubble and Apollo, and finally bulb the remaining techs after Hubble is done and third faith GS is bought.

Tradition 6 - Commerce 3 - Rationalism 6 - Freedom 6 plus three more from excess culture.

Wanted to ask, are Research agreements worthwhile when your far ahead of your AI opponents? I realise it gives you 8 turns worth of research, but I am assuming the reverse is true too (and that is many more techs to your AI opponents). So I am never sure whether to do research agreements. Any thoughts?
RAs give rewards based on the weaker partner's average science per turn over the RA period. So if you're very far ahead, you'll only get a negligible science boost out of it. Sign them only if you have nothing else to spend gold on.
 

Tiberiu

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Congrats for the victory Vadalaz, very nice, informative and instructive, the timings, and all. Based on the high differential between how my game ended I can see now that only 4 cities is too few for SV. I peaked at 1600 science with them while having 5 cities would have allowed to go close to 2 k, a very big difference not only for the yield of science turn by-turn, but also the bulb value. This is something to keep in mind for me for future games while playing for SVs. The correct time to plant the 5th city seems to be right when entering Modern since after that there is enough happiness for it from the ideology. With buying aqueduct and granary and lighthouse and sending food caravans to it, it should quickly grow and catch up.

My game would have ended how I predicted if it weren't for the fact that I bulbed the scientists just a bit too early, exactly 5 turns worth.... minor mistakes such as not replacing farms early enough with trade posts, and not switching last 3 sea routes to capital from food to production and the other 7 sea routes to external gold are worth around 5 turns too, so here is only a turn 209 SV for me. Going back to the start of the game, I must consider building The Great Lighthouse instead of a normal lighthouse as another 5 turns delay especially since I never had a fleet except the early trireme, and I couldn't stop at least 1 merchant from spawning. So, using my strategy with a food religion including the suboptimal pantheon and plowshare beliefs and greedy suboptimal tech path, I think I could have not won earlier than turn 195 while staying on the same 4 cities. Which is still a lot compared to turn 153.... 40+ extra turns means there is still a lot of work to be done. Clearly, many things that might seem minor are adding up during the game to dozens of extra turns. I must have been wrong on Research agreements use, too, it seems they are quite important for quick SV. I had gold for some during game and could have signed a few of them, but didn't. I think a much better attempt to win faster would have been on the Great Library-Oracle route, since they give Great Scientist points instead of Engineer. And maybe capture ToA later during the game.

Spoiler t209 SV :

Continuing the last session I did bulb a Scientist right away to start building Research Labs 3 turns earlier. This was probably misguided too.
I continued more or less without any disturbances (was never in war during the game except 1 turn when stealing Kiev's worker). Built Sydney Opera House, CN Tower, Eiffel, Broadway, etc. Built Apollo on t197 and had enough gold to buy the parts but the Science output was too low and I had no faith to buy scientists. Rationalism finisher was used for Satellites.
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asmith

Chieftain
Joined
Mar 21, 2009
Messages
22
Wow really great game Valdaz! Thanks for the feedback on Research Agreements. Definitely will not use them then if I am going to be as far ahead as I usually am on Emperoror.

Wanted to ask about the number of cities - could you have just as easily marched into Kiev and taken that over at say turn 100 when you started conquering cities. Yes no wonders or any such thing, and yes no new luxuries, but given the amount of happiness you were running with, would that have worked? (As you would be able to send food to it from cargo ships). Then purchase zoo, stadium, pagoda for happiness in the city, and bring it up to spec by purchasing university and labs etc.

I know the reasoning for going after capitals - usually they will contain good wonders and typically will have luxuries that you yourself do not have. Having said that, getting there would have taken at least 10 turns. Having said that, I can see that you went for the Chicen Itza which makes sense to increase your golden ages.

Also is 7 cities about typically what you want for a quick science victory? Say 2-5 in the first 100 turns, then go to 7 by turn 130 and hopefully finish by 160?

Re Specialists - does this mean, even with the rationalism policy that gives you 2 science for every specialist, that you do not run any musicians nor any merchants? When I get the freedom policy, I tend to shove everyone into those specialist slots filling them all up. Including the merchant and musician ones. Is that a mistake as the merchants feed from the science and engineer pool (though by that time I don't really want engineers either particularly) and the musicians and writers will lessen my chance of getting great artists for golden ages. I always figured that the writers did not matter as much because its giving me extra culture for more policies. Not only is it for the science, but also for the increased happiness (the policy in the freedom tree that gives you less happiness for specialists and the other one that requires half food for specialists).

Thanks for any feedback given. (I intend to try and play it again maybe tomorrow).


I am always happy to talk strategies. If you allow me to express maybe an unpopular opinion, I think that playing same game doesn't really help us become better, it can be good to make some experimentations with Policies/tech paths or whatever.
But the thing is that when you play with map knowledge, all your decisions are biased... My principle is that any map can only be played exactly 1 time that matters. Replays don't count. But it is just my opinion that I share and this doesn't mean other people can't disagree or have fun playing same map, of course. I think the mystery of an unknown map is what leads to better decisions being employed.

I think Valdaz doing this map so quickly proves otherwise. Clearly there is so much more for both of us to learn about playing the game. By replaying the map a few times, you can try some of the strategies that others have employed. I would have thought after I had put in 1000 hours of this game I would be good, but clearly I am not up there at all. So that is why I like to replay the map a few times, even with knowing where everything is. I still think its helpful because its one of the easier maps to win. ie being spain, a natural wonder, no other AI around. It does not get much better than that I think at least for a peaceful victory.

Having said that, welcome any opinion from someone who clearly plays a better game than I do!
 

vadalaz

Emperor
Joined
Sep 15, 2014
Messages
1,426
Wanted to ask about the number of cities - could you have just as easily marched into Kiev and taken that over at say turn 100 when you started conquering cities. Yes no wonders or any such thing, and yes no new luxuries, but given the amount of happiness you were running with, would that have worked? (As you would be able to send food to it from cargo ships). Then purchase zoo, stadium, pagoda for happiness in the city, and bring it up to spec by purchasing university and labs etc.
Killing a CS will usually make everyone hate you, which leads to problems with trading etc. Kiev doesn't have a unique lux, doesn't have many good tiles, and it's a culture CS which is arguably the most useful type of CS to ally in a science game. Besides, I'd already made peace with Kiev at that point, and declaring war again on any CS would've given me a permanent penalty with all other CSs, or some of them at least.

It might've been a good idea to take Copenhagen early, I think it had Salt and at least 2 granary resources? It's just that I was hoping to not invest any production into a land army at all and Denmark never built any useful wonders. Harald had top army for a while and never really did anything with it.

Also is 7 cities about typically what you want for a quick science victory? Say 2-5 in the first 100 turns, then go to 7 by turn 130 and hopefully finish by 160?
I like to have 8-9 cities on a Standard size map in the end, here I just wasn't fast enough with my conquests. Some civs like Korea and Babylon can afford to settle fewer cities and still win very fast. The number of observatories matters too - the more you have, the fewer expos you need to have a very strong endgame. Jungle cities can be great for science as well if you manage to get decent production in them or just buy all the buildings they need.

Re Specialists - does this mean, even with the rationalism policy that gives you 2 science for every specialist, that you do not run any musicians nor any merchants? When I get the freedom policy, I tend to shove everyone into those specialist slots filling them all up. Including the merchant and musician ones. Is that a mistake as the merchants feed from the science and engineer pool (though by that time I don't really want engineers either particularly) and the musicians and writers will lessen my chance of getting great artists for golden ages. I always figured that the writers did not matter as much because its giving me extra culture for more policies. Not only is it for the science, but also for the increased happiness (the policy in the freedom tree that gives you less happiness for specialists and the other one that requires half food for specialists).
After ideology I do run all specialists. Before ideologies I usually just run science and culture specialists, sometimes others if running them seems better than working a tile, e.g. I might work a 2-hammer 2-science engineer specialist over a 3-hammer mine, or a 2-gold 2-science merchant over a 2-food ocean tile.

Musicians and Writers don't affect Artists - they all have their separate Great Person Point pools, unlike GSs GEs and GMs.
 
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