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Encampments not very useful

Discussion in 'Civ6 - General Discussions' started by Tacgnol, Feb 8, 2017.

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Do you think encampments are useful?

Poll closed May 8, 2017.
  1. Yes

    63 vote(s)
    50.8%
  2. No

    23 vote(s)
    18.5%
  3. Situationally but they're balanced

    38 vote(s)
    30.6%
  1. Quillan

    Quillan Monkey Butler

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    excellent, i was hoping i could find an undergrad to do my work like the old days :D

    quantify sir... find the present value at build times x, x+y, x+z, (dunno what levels of y and z are best... maybe 100 turns, 200 turns?) of a CD vs an encampment by somehow equating prod/housing/gold. we can leave the rest of the attributes of the encampment to further study (and your nobel no doubt).


    regarding the GMP i'm not denegrating them, i love em. I'm saying most people undervalue the other GPP (esp if everyone is so dom focused... in that case GG are ridiculous both offensively and vs offensive MP civs --- believe me, pop the first gg in a mp game and watch rome cry as he tries to invade!, but i MP digress...). Even so, a single GG adds a ton of power to xbows and speeds up dom by a good deal. whether that is worth the lost gold and food/prod from a trader relative to an encampment is the point of the discussion.
     
  2. greygamer

    greygamer Feudal Lord

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    I don't object to opportunity cost per se, but rather than it's use in this thread without any supporting evidence for what the better choice(s) are. This part of the discussion deserves it's own thread but is anyone bold enough to start that thread?
    The subject of this thread was Do you think encampments are useful? (Not the title for some reason) It seems to have become the relative value of each district which also should be in it's own thread so people can find this information more easily.

    The poll seems to have solidified at around 16% agreeing with the premise "Encampments not very useful" with the remainder split on it being situational or a straight yes.

    A quick google search came up with... Some opportunity costs are absolutely quantifiable while others are intangible
     
  3. sugerdady87

    sugerdady87 Warlord

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    People have been providing alternatives the entire thread. But to say the opportunity cost here is unquantifiable is false. A more realistic statement would be to say it's just too difficult to do so.
     
  4. greygamer

    greygamer Feudal Lord

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    Very rarely have alternatives been provided. I found these (quotes in italics).

    The opportunity cost of not building an actual district that has proper buildings that actually help you develop your empire directly is immense.
    Really subjective as encampment buildings do add resources to an empire
    they slow your growth because of the opportunity costs
    Which the post didn't feel the need to explain
    When talking opportunity costs why build a theater, holy site or overlapping IZ/ent district instead?
    This could be supporting building encampments - I do find uses for these districts btw I would call them situational
    the legacy bonuses from retiring generals are generally quite poor in comparison to their opportunity cost
    Once again needs more supporting details, I could read this as Great Generals are the worst GP. Of course great generals have a use in addition to retirement bonuses but whatever
    Which brings us to...the old opportunity cost argument which is often overlooked but is very important as it is not only a case of what you gain but what you lose by gaining it and in the vast majority of cases i would see that i would lose more than i gained by building encampments.
    My first few games i built encampments and then stopped as i realised i wasn't actually getting anything noticeable from them the vast majority of the time and since i stopped building them i haven't missed them at all.

    At least this one gives a reason but no alternatives ...anything is better?

    I think the subject of opportunity cost in Civ6 needs it's own thread as it is a lot broader than simply are encampments worth it. For example detailing research/civic focus and what is being compromised.

    To get an early encampment, I'm giving up an early campus/holy site or rushing to a higher tech because I know their are no consequences to the warmonger penalties - something I truly hope they fix when they add diplomatic victory and world congress are added to the game. When push comes to shove I can generate gold from my early wars and I really want a great general early on deity to offset attacking an AI on defensive terrain plus a +4 bonus, an AI that can outproduce and out tech me early on. I might not have horses or iron and it might be far away. Encampments eliminate a lot of chance elements and help when Gandhi comes calling with his Varu (I get Gandhi as a neighbour way too often). Those actually can take un-walled cities from you in a couple of hits.
     
  5. Victoria

    Victoria Regina Supporter

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    I am going to build 1000 settlers because the opportunity costs are great
    I am going to kill prince charles because the opportunity costs are phenominal

    I am not saying that you cannot quantify them. I am saying using the words opportunity costs without quantification is open to abuse. Perhaps unquantifiable was too strong but I just used stupidity back. After all meet force with force is often the second best option.
     
  6. Ryika

    Ryika Lazy Wannabe Artista

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    This example doesn't make sense.

    "Opportunity costs" are the costs of what you don't get by going down a given road. Opportunity costs are the argument AGAINST building 1000 settlers, because these 1000 settlers of which 970 will never become cities because there's no space for them could as well have been other things. You can either have 1000 settlers, or you can have 30 settlers (just to stick with that number) and tons of infrastructure in the cities that you've settled, but not both at the same time. Having 30 cities that are developed will clearly outperform having 30 empty cities and 970 settlers sitting around.

    This only makes (some) sense if you evaluate your strategy by the perfect outcome, not be the expected or average outcomes. I don't think this really applies here.


    But to be fair, being the one who brought up opportunity cost at first, I think I didn't word my post pretty well, so let me add to that:

    I'm not saying they're never worth building, all I'm saying is that they're never a priority district for me. Obviously, if I have the important ones, then they provide some nice bonus production, but that doesn't make it a district that I want to "spam", it's an "Okay, that city has grown so much that it already has the good districts, what else is there?"-choice. A district that's in the pool of "Districts that I don't really want", either because they're a terrible package in general, or because they don't fit my strategy.

    I would never be like: "Commercial district or Encampment? Such a difficult decision." - no, I would be like: "Okay, let's get another trade route.", not be like: "Okay, let's get the district that will eventually give me some additional production somewhere down the line, and some other bonuses that are pretty meaningless."

    That makes them a pretty terrible district in my book. "Useless" is a bit of a hyperbole, but it's most certainly in the pool of districts that are so bad that I wouldn't want to build them actively in large numbers in really any strategy.
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2017
  7. JaqenHahaghar

    JaqenHahaghar Chieftain

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    Much has been said. For those of you who want a better sense on ED, I suggest that you go to play a MP game on the Chinese server. There, ALL the high level players rush to build ED in most of their cities, AND rush to pump encampment training projects, and most GGs are gone (until atomic era) by turn 60-70.

    This may sound crazy but you should see why after a few games. Good players there play with cold-blooded rationality and everyone is checking domination score and GP history every turn, picking the next target to attack and weighing in the risk of being attacked. If you didn't rush for GG like everyone did, the likelihood that a neighbor of you gets 2 more GGs than you is quite large. With two fewer GGs, or in the worst case three fewer GGs, your army melts like butter. This has happened to me multiple times since I'm used to prioritize the economy and CDs in most games. Then, a much smaller and economically weaker foe comes in and chew through my much larger army.

    The other thing people race for is defenders of faith, every single game. But that is less of a problem since it is defensive.

     
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  8. Ryika

    Ryika Lazy Wannabe Artista

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    Yeah, I realize that GGs are king in MP because of the fact that Firaxis has still not changed the way their bonuses stack which I find to be a very questionable oversight. But I'm talking about SP only:

    The same is true for the OP, given that he has said what difficulty setting he's playing on. (Then there's also the fact that this is the General Discussions Forum, not the Multiplayer Forum..)

    MP experiences have little to nothing to say about SP, because the game is played very differently for obvious reasons. If you're playing an economic game, then the AI will simply not pose a serious threat. It does not gather GGs, it will not combine them to roll over you, and its general use of military units is terrible. So you simply don't NEED GGs of your own.
     
  9. Quillan

    Quillan Monkey Butler

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    One doesn't need much to win in civ 6 so the question is not do you need them, but rather does building an encampment make it easier to win.

    Opportunity cost is most simply the choices forgone by making a decision; if you spend your prod on x you can't spend it at the same time on y, if you build a scout you're not building a slinger, etc.
     
  10. PlotinusRedux

    PlotinusRedux Warlord

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    I only play single player, and usually don't bother with walls so I don't get a ranged attack from them, but I still build at least one early for:

    (1) Horse based units with just 1 horse resource--I frequently only start within range of only 1 horse;
    (2) Bonus production to city + as trade destination;
    (3) I really like the the bonus xp to units;
    (4) I frequently run into that CS that makes them grant an extra trade route, who becomes my new best friend;
    (5) I'm usually on offense with no units left behind to defend, but with a gold reserve to buy a couple of units if I get surprised by barbs, etc. Even the wall-less Encampment exercises ZOC to slow down any surprise, but more importantly I can buy 2 units for 1 city in the same turn, which is generally enough to hold off any AI/barb surprise attacks. Or even if I just buy one to stall while I get units back to defend, since the encampment is towards the edge of my city's area and the AI turns to focus on that unit, I end up with less important tiles/districts pillaged before my units get back to defend.
     
  11. knighterrant81

    knighterrant81 Warlord

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    I don't find Encampments useful, mostly because there are usually more useful things to build (yes, because of the opportunity cost, but that seems to be a touchy subject so I'll just try to outline my decision-making process). I tend to play on King-Emperor Standard Speed, Standard Size, Continents maps. I tend to play: Arabia, Russia, Poland (but I suck at them right now, still learning - and yes, trying Encampment strategies), Rome, Germany, Gorgo, America. I tend to go for Cultural or Science Victories and often start by conquering a significant chunk (or all) of my home Continent.

    Capital City:

    1st District: I like getting the inspiration for State Workforce, which means my 1st District here is usually a Holy SIte (if I'm going for an early religion) or a Campus (all other situations). Bronze Working is usually too out of the way and the Campus/Holy Site have much more impact for less tech/time investment.

    2nd District: Tends to be a Campus or a Commercial Hub, depending on where I am at in the tech tree (and if I went after a religion). Trying to get that boost for Medieval Faires (helps with Exploration). Also, trade routes. This could be an Encampment, but I don't really need the defense in my capital (attacks come at peripheral cities, units help more with defense than an Encampment for less investment, and walls give almost the same benefit for a much smaller investment). I also don't need the XP bonuses from encampment buildings because the AI is bad at combat. Commercial Hub gives the same trade route boost at +1 cog, so its basically +1 Trade Route (which at this point is worth 1-3 cogs usually that I can put in any city) > Encampment Buildings/Defense.

    3rd District: Tends to be an Industrial Zone, especially if I can get good adjacency bonuses. Again, usually get about 3 cogs right away (from adjacency) and then workshop gives +2. Helps with Eureka towards Industrialization (and Factories). Also shares the +1 cog for Trade Routes with Encampment. IZ Buildings, Eureka boosts, adjacency bonuses (which can be boosted with a Civics card) > Encampment building bonuses (+3 cogs at this point that require one extra building than the IZ).

    4th District: Theater for Cultural Victory. Perhaps an Encampment if I'm going for a Science Victory (Space Race production bonus for a Military Academy).

    Other Cities:

    1st District: Holy Site (if going for Religion, probably only in one or two cities besides the Capital), Campus (Science or Domination). I'd consider Encampment here if it was a good production city site (stacking city production with later Encampment production) and a good choke point to place the Encampment.

    2nd District: Commercial Hub or Harbor. Theater for Culture Victory perhaps. Both give the +1 cog and the trade route > Encampment buildings. Earlier you get the Culture/Tourism train going for CV, the better off you are.

    3rd District: Industrial Zone, Commercial Hub/Harbor, or Campus/Theater.

    4th District: Theater. Encampment for Science Victory perhaps.

    When we talk about "Opportunity Cost" I think about each city as having a district "slot" at each population tier. The first 3-4 "slots" will be used quickly, and then you wait a long time because of housing cap pre-Neighborhoods. For me those tend to go to: Commercial Hub, Campus, Industrial Zone, and situationally: Harbor, Holy Site/Theater Square. Once Neighborhoods are a thing, the game is pretty much over. If there's a place where you would "slot" an Encampment, I'd love to hear about it and why you put an Encampment in that "slot" (my Poland strategies would be particularly interested).
     
  12. greygamer

    greygamer Feudal Lord

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    It's a touchy subject for me, but really because it's subjective and opportunity cost starts with where do I settle what do I research (tech/civics)? It's not just how much production does a thing cost. You can apply opportunity cost to when/if you build a settler for example. I have already said why I rate encampments so "nuff said" on that matter

    1st district - until recently I went encampment first but at higher difficulties a campus makes more sense, great generals give bonuses to classical/medieval units at the minimum and if the AI is locking out early generals you could find you need medieval/renaissance units. Holy district only if I want a shot at a religion.

    2nd District - Encampment (Campus if I built a Holy Site)

    3rd District - By this point the Classic era districts will be available so theatre/entertainment depending on if I need more amenities at that point. I'll want to get to mercenaries soon so culture is important. Holy sites are an option if the AI has some relics you can buy (or take as repatriations)

    4th District - Commercial

    1st District - 60/40 encampment/commercial

    2nd District 60/40 commercial/encampment

    3rd and later Districts - situational, most of these cities are captured ones so the first few district slots may be already filled.

    That is a very sensible approach

    Because I am capturing a lot of cities entertainment districts get shunted up the order depending on the local luxuries and a lot of smaller cities can give more slots if you are willing to mix things up. Anyway that's what works for me.
     
  13. KmDubya

    KmDubya King

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    If you sent 10 trade routes back to the city with the encampment the +1 cog per trade route would pay itself back in 20 turns. You don't want them in every city but in one or one per each direction you need to invade makes a lot of sense. The ability to build strategic units with a single source and the ability to train corps and armies makes them both worthwhile and necessary.
     
  14. Victoria

    Victoria Regina Supporter

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    In my capital I will often get encampment, commercial then harbour. I just like the +3 prod and 3 eary trade routes.
    In my other cities until the mid game I will go commercial then harbour then either campus or theatre.
    Mid game I am assessing happiness and production and so its then I consider those districts. Discovering the +1 mines I find is a priority over using an IZ.
    Mid game its is only the district I Want to win and entertainment.
    End game, only harbours. I will settle about 5 late game cities though unless domination.
     
  15. knighterrant81

    knighterrant81 Warlord

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    I almost never need to build Entertainment districts, at least until the end of the game or close to it. I also never really build Theater Districts unless I'm going for a Cultural Victory (and even then I don't build them right away or in a ton of cities). Monuments and the Meritocracy policy card pretty much takes care of all my cultural needs. Also, what specifically do you get out of that Encampment District at the pop 4 slot? I find slotting Encampments early slows my growth in areas like science/religion, or in building City Center improvements (Water Mill, Granary, Monument), Builder/Settlers or military units (which are very easy to build in the Ancient/Classical era, then you can buy upgrades for the rest of the game using all the gold you get from Commercial Districts).

    It would make sense defensively but I can keep the AI at bay a lot more cheaply by building more units. If the AI was enough of a threat (and the Encampment was enough of a boon) then yeah, I'd build it. The +1 cog for trade routes is not really an argument because the Commercial District gives the same benefit, and thus, you get the same benefit for your district "slot". It is a non-issue as far as this conversation goes.

    I tend to have a plan with strategic resources that goes something like: 1) Research the tech, 2) scout out the resources, 3) take it for myself either through settling or early archer rush. I've rarely been forced to use an Encampment (although it has happened).

    Don't get me wrong, I think it is good to question the orthodoxy of Commercial District spam. Just making sure if we come up with an idea, it can hold water! I just usually sit in my game, looking at my screen with "Encampment" on it, and keep asking myself "why bother?" And I haven't come up with a good answer yet (besides Space Race). I usually make my Corps/Armies out of pre-existing units. I'm still in the habit of building Industrial Zones everywhere even after the nerf, which I should probably get out of, but those freebie adjacency bonuses still beat out what I can get from an Encampment, and I feel absolutely no military pressure from the AI.
     
  16. Victoria

    Victoria Regina Supporter

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    Its is a hot and dusty day in Victoria city made bearable by the lull in barbarian invasions. The queen herself has dictated an encampment be made and the architects are highly upset. The city is small and what parts of the city have extended out is for useful ground like wheat fields and cute little piglets. Where to place this encampment? they wonder. If one tries to place it right next to the city god will strike us down as one is not allowed to build one next to a city. If one places said encampment on the wheat field one will starve and there is no way one will hurt those cute little piggies.

    To me the thing that makes encampments useless is I cannot place them early game without buying a tile. I suspect the developers are wanting more encampments but have missed a trick here.
     
  17. greygamer

    greygamer Feudal Lord

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    Depends what we mean by end of the game, some of my games seem to be in the bag before turn 100 (standard pace), at that point I often take my foot off the gas.

    Entertainment districts are situational, just like you can get a map with no horses/iron nearby (<12 tiles) you can get a map with little variety of luxuries so unless you are going to keep those cities very small or accept the production penalties I want more happiness to push the housing cap. Also the Colosseum is a nice wonder that I usually build.

    I like great generals and the extra encampments with barracks/stable give me more points towards that. I get extra production, housing and a specialist spot (extra production + culture). Useful if that city isn't in a great spot (i.e. captured).

    If I'm not going for a religious victory why would I bother with holy sites? At lower difficulty levels <emperor I don't really fall behind the AI in military tech (which is the only one that I care about). I build monuments in all cities but granaries/water mills are situational for me. If I build a campus in the capital it's usually enough, along with pillaging and intelligent use of boosts, culture is where I lag behind in so much that I want mercenaries a little earlier than I usually get it. Going for meritocracy would delay it further, enough that I prioritise the boosts for feudalism - mercenaries over getting a pop 10 city.

    As you mentioned ancient classical units are cheap to build. I don't build many settlers unless I have no one to invade :satan: when the AI will give you a few hundred gold plus 10+ gpt do you really need to build many traders?

    I think a lot comes down to play-style. I make the first 2 eras last but bee-lining to medieval (if you have iron) can also work if that suits you more. My army tends to be very cheap and battering rams / siege towers keep it useful for longer. I only need a couple of those parked next to the target,
     
  18. greygamer

    greygamer Feudal Lord

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    Wouldn't an encampment you can place next to a city make it almost immune to sieges.
     
  19. Victoria

    Victoria Regina Supporter

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    Take the encampment first? It would be harder but we do not mind harder at the moment surely?
    If the encampment is 1 square out its still not easy.
    I'll take on any option that allows me to stop spending money to get that first encampment out. Because you cannot remove a district perhaps you can place an encampment in any tile within 3 of your city?.... then again I guess that's open to abuse if you put your city next to the enemies.
    How about any tile adjoining a tile you already own?
     
  20. greygamer

    greygamer Feudal Lord

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    :lol: I mean it would make it too difficult for the AI to damage your city as someone explained that just parking a melee unit next to you city would allow you to pretty much destroy anyone trying to siege a city if you had a ranged unit in the city.
    I have noticed the AI always tries to approach my cities with encampments from the other side, just anecdotal evidence at the moment mind you. Maybe it views the encampment as a unit it cannot easily destroy (even without walls) and so avoids it. I wonder how the AI processes information but on the other hand that would make it even easier to exploit.
     
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