Emperoror Quick Speed, Trying to get better

mbbcam

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I think that playing same game doesn't really help us become better
I would say it is analytical ability that allows a player to improve. If one keeps on making the same mistakes, it will not matter if one is playing a new game or an old one. Then again, I believe everyone has a "ceiling" past which they are unlikely to improve, no matter what they do. I have put tons of hours into Civ5 and I am still lousy. I am not exactly sure why, but I suspect that better players are better at doing cost-benefit analyses on the fly (probably intuitively, rather than consciously). At bottom, this game is all about numbers, and I am not good at numbers.
 

asmith

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Mar 21, 2009
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I want to thank everyone for their help. I cut my time down to 203. I made some mistakes that if corrected would get my time down a lot more:

1) I founded my first two cities and went for NC. However, I did not have my settlers ready to go in order to found the other 4 I intended to create.
2) I did not have enough workers at all. I should have definitely got some more workers by stealing from Kiev. I think up until turn 100 I was so busy doing other things, I only had one worker.
3) Missed out on Petra because I took too long to create that city.
4) Not building up enough money to buy labs straight away. I think that cost me at least 8 turns.
5) Should have got the Mercantlism much sooner than I did. So focused on trying to keep my happiness up, I failed to realise how much cheaper that plus Big ben would make everything. If I had thought about it, I would have got those two things, then bought my happiness from buildings.


I did find it a struggle to get the Medieval era quick enough. I just about managed it, but getting there quick enough so I could pick a commerce policy straight after finishing tradition was very difficult.

Some screenshots:

End Cities.jpg





End policies.jpg
 
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Tiberiu

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I want to thank everyone for their help. I cut my time down to 203. I made some mistakes that if corrected would get my time down a lot more:

Congratulations asmith! A significant improvement not only in the finish time but also in the empire strength and yields. Thanks for sharing.

You have inspired me to make one more attempt at this game, our of curiousity of how better could I do a second time. This time with a more normal approach with regards to religion I think I will also improve my time with at least 30 turns, maybe more. It seems that working Universities faster with smaller cities is better overall than just having big cities.

I went for 10 cities Liberty, also took Tradition for Aristocracy and then Exploration for happiness and production. With 10 coastal cities exploration pays off. This time I skipped ToA and instead built Great Library, Oracle and Hagia Sophia, together with all the other wonders as last game, but built more carefully so as to never spawn a Merchant. Used Liberty finisher for engineer Macchu Picchu. I don't know if Scientist for an academy would have been better overall but Gold seems to be very useful for the late game and surely Macchu Picchu helps.

Religion with Mosques and Pagodas this time, and for Pantheon I went with +2 faith from pearls since it seems to overall be better than OwN on this map.
I have 4 extra luxuries in my empire ( Marble, Copper, Salt and Cotton thanks to Pacal's monastery in the Mt.Sinai city.

I have captured Ribe from Denmark last turn and don't exactly know what's the best way to proceed. I could sell it to Pacal which only has his capital but for only 8 gpt... I could gift it to Brazil with whom I have a DOF and a RA, to take up that space. Keeping it, even if it gives Sugar, seems a bad idea since it has no buildings and it has to be a net-negative for science, slowing me down.

Right now turn 108 and I am already more ahead than the previous game. 9 Cities are already working Universities, and this time I will have end-game faith to buy at least 3-4 Scientists with Faith. Will take Rationalism in 2 turns and also build Sistine Chapel which will give decent culture with this many cities. And I've already signed 1 RA with Brazil.

Spoiler :

replay_10cities_t108.jpg


replay_10cities_t108_2.jpg


 

Tiberiu

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I've finished the replay with a turn 176 SV with 10 cities Liberty but I exceeded Science needed with 60.000 and 2 cities never produced a scientist so I am tempted to theorize that the ideal number is 8 at maximum, or maybe 7 like Vadalaz had.

Cities which don't end up spawning scientists can be seen as net negatives, thus I am satisfied with only a turn 176 in these conditions. Santiago+Zaragoza were the bad cities.
The Mt. Sinai City was an overall plus because the faith it yielded can be seen as producing at least 1 scientist extra while the other 2 cities planted just to take up space and religious pressure never did anything useful other than pure yields.

Thanks again to OP for the game and experience exchange. I think I actually learned a few things playing this game with regards to how to get a faster SV, but mostly it seems that the most important factor seems to be getting the number of cities right, and building the important wonders, without making useless detours for things which aren't essential.

replay_176_victorySV.jpg
 
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vadalaz

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A good approach might be 5 cities on the starting continent + 6th on Copper + Copenhagen and Palenque, with aggro play in the beginning demanding tribute from CSs and selling Pearls in peace deals to the three reachable AIs. Maybe a Sugar city too (or just citadel it), or maybe take Rio as well depending on which wonders Pedro builds. Harald seems willing to attack Pacal, so that's an easy bribe to soften them both up before taking their capitals.
 

asmith

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Mar 21, 2009
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Tiberiu - that is great! I am still trying to get my head around it all at the moment. I tried the map again and managed to get it to 193 which again is better but still not great.

@vadalaz & Tiberiu - if it is not too much trouble, do you remember what year you reach the renaissance era? I can't seem to get there before turn 95-100. Is that what should be happening on quick speed? Or is that too slow still? If it is still too slow, then clearly I am doing something wrong still. (If this is the case then I guess I should post exact build orders and timings every 5 turns, so that way you can give some idea of what i am doing wrong).
The reason I ask, is that would leave less than 90 turns to go through all the other technologies, which seems disproportionately hard.
 

Tiberiu

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Hello. I don't keep track of Renaissance era but entering Modern era via Radio seems to be a good benchmark. I think Vadalaz said he did that in 119, I did it around 132-133. I was trying to understand what I did wrong and the plausible reason is at least 5-6 turns were from the increased cost of all techs with more cities. I also entered with Acoustics otherwise I had to take one more medieval policy... but the better should be to rush Printing Press to found World congress asap.

Thankfully we know what are the important things to do and only need to sort out some small details and to understand via experimentation and theorycrafting if some decisions are actually good or not.

For example I took engineer with Liberty finish and bulbed Macchu, but what if I took Scientist directly and - maybe - hard build Macchu?

Also - what to take with Pisa great person? I took Prophet because the logic was that by taking Scientist I would delay other ones in the cities. This decision was actually good I think but because I used the scientists too late, in practice I fully wasted the bonus.

Another question is - how to use trade routes most efficiently? I am biased for sending food to the capital but in the replay game I saw value in sending food to the weaker cities to help them catch up. Also, if one manages to get DOFs, sending external sea cargo for gold might be good (for having money for RAs and to buy stuff).

Last but not least - if the player manages to use army to get some spoils of war via conquest, that surely must help. On deity it is hard to get spoils with a small army but on less difficulty, small army can conquer 1 city + 1 capital and sell them for a lot of gold. In my replay game I sold a few cities during the game, at one point 200+ gpt was coming from selling a few cities. This helped to buy 10 research labs immediately. (600 gold each with mercantilism and big ben)
So maybe getting Macchu Picchu is overrated, if one manages to get gold via conquest.

Another small things that are interesting to think about on this map. How about that pantheon with +2 science from city connections. This could be a good trade off for the lost faith.

One problem with testing these in a game is that there are too many variables and the results might not be conclusive.
 
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mbbcam

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One problem with testing these in a game is that there are too many variables and the results might not be conclusive.
I think you just summed up why Civ5 is difficult, and why some of us never manage to play it well, despite thousands of hours of practice. :)
 

asmith

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I don't disagree with either of you particularly. However, I am now just trying to match the same amount of Science that Valdaz had at turn 60. If I cannot even do that, then I may as well forget trying to come close to his ending turn.
 

vadalaz

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I reached Astronomy on turn 85 in my playthrough. Something I once found really helpful to hit specific benchmarks was to play the game in reverse in my head. So let's say you want NC by turn 50:

- that means you want to start building it around T40-45
- so you need to finish all libraries by T40-45
- then you need to figure out how long it'd take to build a library in each city. Late expos build libraries slowly, but there are ways to speed things up: chopping forests, sending food cargo ships and working hill tiles, or just buying the library (which I personally think is a waste of gold most of the time)
- let's assume the slowest library build is ~10 turns, so you should start it on turn 30-35 in that city
- this means you need to have that city planted by turn 30-35, and you need Writing as well
- a settler needs to travel to the right spot to plant the city, let's assume that takes 5 turns. So you'd need to finish the settler for that city by turn 25-30

Something like that. You can do this for any kind of goal, e.g. if you want a science victory by turn 150, you should probably reach Plastics around T130 and have enough gold to buy all labs immediately, and you also need to win World's Fair and have enough Writers to burn for culture etc. Plan ahead and try to adapt your strategy when things go wrong.
 

zxcvbob

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I just found this discussion recently. I played it a few days ago. (I have played a *lot* of Civ 5 games recently and the details run together in my head) I remember that I did get a science victory before year 1900, and that's my benchmark. And I could have shaved about 4 turns off of that by buying two more spaceship parts that I was already building when I hit Particle Physics. Let's see if I can find my save file...
20220219201823_1.jpg

I took the production from fishing boats pantheon instead of OWN. If I recall correctly, I still founded the first religion.
 

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so_what

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Interesting game. I tried and gave it a go.

Tradition 6 / Patronage 1. 3 city into NC. In a way, I think Emperor is more restrictive than deity. By T75, none of the 3 AIs I met has a spare copy of lux and they are mostly broke (Pacal and Harold had mostly negative gpt most of the time)! So, I don't have much luck for lux trading, except that I managed to sell a few horses. The positive point compare to deity is that I can pretty much built any wonders I want.

After NC, I settled 2 other cities later on the same island but they struggle to catch up. Maybe the 5th city is a mistake! Got to Education at T75, looking at Astronomy in 12-14T.

Perhaps, I will build an army after universities to conquer more cities and get to 7-8 cities. No plans to continue the game at the moment, so I will leave it here for now (might pick it up in the future :)).

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asmith

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Mar 21, 2009
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I reached Astronomy on turn 85 in my playthrough. Something I once found really helpful to hit specific benchmarks was to play the game in reverse in my head. So let's say you want NC by turn 50:

- that means you want to start building it around T40-45
- so you need to finish all libraries by T40-45
- then you need to figure out how long it'd take to build a library in each city. Late expos build libraries slowly, but there are ways to speed things up: chopping forests, sending food cargo ships and working hill tiles, or just buying the library (which I personally think is a waste of gold most of the time)
- let's assume the slowest library build is ~10 turns, so you should start it on turn 30-35 in that city
- this means you need to have that city planted by turn 30-35, and you need Writing as well
- a settler needs to travel to the right spot to plant the city, let's assume that takes 5 turns. So you'd need to finish the settler for that city by turn 25-30

Something like that. You can do this for any kind of goal, e.g. if you want a science victory by turn 150, you should probably reach Plastics around T130 and have enough gold to buy all labs immediately, and you also need to win World's Fair and have enough Writers to burn for culture etc. Plan ahead and try to adapt your strategy when things go wrong.


So I have replayed this map about 10 times. I kept trying different things.

Eventually I decided I should focus purely on your strategy of getting the NC with 2 cities then 5 cities ready really quickly afterwards.

I got to Astronomy at Turn 87. (which is probably the best time I have ever reached astronomy). However, lots of the bottom techs of the tree were not done. The struggle I had was getting to Radio by 119.

I got there at about 133. I had 6 cities at this point. Consequently plastics was much later, at 155 (though I was able to buy all the reasearch labs outright)....then finishing at 185.

I suspect part of it is having to build the universities - even with the commerce discount of 15% (3rd pick right hand side), I never have enough money to buy them outright.

Any thoughts - apart from the total lack of workers in this game! I suspect it is as Tiberiu states, sometimes your just not going to get better because there are a million variables.
 

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so_what

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So I have replayed this map about 10 times. I kept trying different things.

Eventually I decided I should focus purely on your strategy of getting the NC with 2 cities then 5 cities ready really quickly afterwards.

I got to Astronomy at Turn 87. (which is probably the best time I have ever reached astronomy). However, lots of the bottom techs of the tree were not done. The struggle I had was getting to Radio by 119.

I got there at about 133. I had 6 cities at this point. Consequently plastics was much later, at 155 (though I was able to buy all the reasearch labs outright)....then finishing at 185.

I suspect part of it is having to build the universities - even with the commerce discount of 15% (3rd pick right hand side), I never have enough money to buy them outright.

Any thoughts - apart from the total lack of workers in this game! I suspect it is as Tiberiu states, sometimes your just not going to get better because there are a million variables.

A few thoughts from me.
- Build more workers if you need, I find that solely relying on CS is not enough.
- A T87 Astronomy is pretty decent for early game. You would probably need to optimize your mid-late game more.
- For mid-game, get more cities through settling or conquest (for standard maps I usually aim for 8+ cities). Personally, I think that buying university is not necessary (though definitely good to have). Usually I would prioritize spending the gold on troops upgrade.
Late game seems a little slow too, I believe that from plastic to endgame it is possible to finish faster than 30 turns if you have more cities.
 

vadalaz

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Any thoughts - apart from the total lack of workers in this game!
I checked the save. A few things:

Allowing the game to select tiles for you is hurting you. The cities aren't growing fast enough, and some good tiles - like Silk and Cows that Cordoba and Seville both have access to - aren't being worked at all.

I think your build order could be improved as well:

- Earlier Lighthouses would've been useful
- I'd skip the Monument in Barcelona and just take the free one from Legalism, spend early production on a worker or a lighthouse or anything else
- Seville is a late city and has little time to build anything other than the essentials, so I'd let Madrid or Barcelona build workboats for it

Try to be more proactive with your trading. A couple of options immediately available on turn 78:
- sell Pearls to Pedro for 179g and buy a workboat for 130 to connect another Pearls
- trade Pearls, Ivory and Silk for Cotton with Pacal. It's -4 net happiness (since you have Pearls from Kiev), but it triggers 3 we love the king days, most importantly in the capital. When the deal runs out, Pacal will likely have connected another Cotton and you'll be able to trade one lux for it for the rest of the game
 

asmith

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Thank you both for the feedback. I am going to go away, implement your suggestions and try replaying a few more times and see what happens.
 

mbbcam

Prince
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Thank you both for the feedback. I am going to go away, implement your suggestions and try replaying a few more times and see what happens.
This may seem like a slightly odd suggestion, but I found that my diplomacy and trading improved when I started using Enhanced User Interface a few years ago (https://forums.civfanatics.com/threads/enhanced-user-interface.512263/). I could never remember what I had traded, or what other Civs had to trade, and I found the icons a useful memory jog, and even an incentive to trade. I find it particularly useful when an item suddenly becomes available -- a quick glance at the right side of the screen and you can see an icon has popped up. With the standard interface you have to do a lot of clicking around and checking. I know EUI is not to everybody's taste, but I don't think I could play the game without it nowadays. It might be worth trying it to see if it helps.

Cheers
 

so_what

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Part 1:

Replayed the early game. I find a 4 city NC strategy is probably what works best for me. There is enough population in the 4 tradition cities to hard build universities in all 4 cities - looking at a T85 Astronomy. After universities will probably be a second wave of units.

Early game wonders: Great Library, ToA, Great Lighthouse, Hanging Garden, Colossus

Tech wise: Ancient era tech > Optics > Civil Service > Iron works > Education
 

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so_what

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Part 2:

Harold wiped out the Mayans and became huge threat, so basically I prepared an army and a navy for him.
Declared war shortly after Harold sent a Great Prophet to convert my cities - got a free holy site.
On turn 111, I have 8 cities after settling 3 more (1 on the same island, 1 on copper,1 by Mt Sinai) and taking 1 from Harold. I could have stopped there but I took 2 more cities from Harold (to raze) so that I can get enough space.

Mid game wonders: Oracle, Machu Picchu, Notre Dame, LtoP.

Tech wise: Astronomy> Printing Press >Industrialization >Scientific theory >Plastic, completing on coal mine in 3 turns and have enough money to buy 3 factories.

As i play infrequently, I don't know when's the next time I will update. Will take a break for now. :king:
 

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so_what

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Part 3: Victory on T155.

Mid-late game was a little slow. I only managed to get to Plastic at T137 (had enough gold to buy 7 labs, and the 8th labs 2 turns later)
- I think one of the reason for the slow mid game is that my 4 later cities struggle to keep up.
- My culture was also slow, since I took a policy in Patronage so I got Mercentilism pretty late to rush buy science buildings in my later cities.
- I was also a little sloppy in my game play and generated an extra engineer from my factory slots, which delayed my scientists.

End game from plastic is pretty straight forward with 8 cities.

Wonders built: Forbidden Palace, Big Ben, Taj Mahal, SoL, Porcelain Tower, Hubble.

Anyway, thanks @asmith for sharing the game and @vadalaz and @Tiberiu for trying it out. I definitely took a few ideas from you guys' game plays.

Spoiler End game :
spain_end.png
 
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