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Expansion + Cottages Example - Immortal

Discussion in 'Civ4 - General Discussions' started by TheMeInTeam, Jun 8, 2009.

  1. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam Top Logic

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    I see a lot of questions on here about how to expand and some misconceptions on what "crashing the economy" means. I also see a lot of requests for "SE", which actually doesn't mean anything, but essentially what the posters often ask is how to use specialists to compete at high levels. The trick is to realize that you need to understand the basics, and that no tile improvement, farm or cottage, will change that fact.

    Below you'll see that you don't need anything crazy to win on immortal. There are no world wonders constructed, just basic cottages, 2 specialist cities, and expansion. Speaking of expansion, I have 10 cities at 1 AD and could have settled #11 (but couldn't get workers there to improve yet).

    Settings: Washington (CHA/EXP), Immortal/normal, no events or huts. Normal size Fractal map.

    Situation 1, 1 AD: For all intents and purposes, we're isolated. The land is actually pretty good; although we don't have gold or gems there's a lot of green. Worker first, research animal husbandry, and use warriors to spawnbust the island (note that this is also a good practice game for keeping barbs in check with only warriors!). Here's a picture of my empire @ 1 AD:







    As you can see, I've yet to gain currency OR code of laws. The only major economy techs I have at the moment are pottery, writing, and monarchy - the latter is how you grow cities early on without pyramids + rep. Normally, you research another tech and trade for it, but in isolation it's so important that you want to tech it yourself if you don't have pyramids!

    I have farmed a great scientist, and intend to switch from aesthetics to CoL to bulb philosophy with him - netting taoism and getting closer to liberalism (also it slows down the AI hitting lib).

    I will attach the saves for anyone who wants to take a look at how 10 cities by 1 AD is realistic, and to practice getting there.

    View attachment TheMeInTeam REX AD-0001.CivBeyondSwordSave

    View attachment AutoSave_Initial_BC-4000.CivBeyondSwordSave
     
  2. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam Top Logic

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    Situation 2, liberalism:



    The obligatory liberalism picture. After philosophy I just pick up currency, civil service, calendar, and head for lib. With practically no tech trades and only 2 bulbs (1 on philosophy, 1 on education), we still get liberalism before the immortal AIs.

    View attachment TheMeInTeam REX AD-1030.CivBeyondSwordSave

    Attached is the save so you can take a look at the empire setup at the time.

    Situation 3, teching to a military advantage:

    First of all, our empire, after democracy + emancipation:









    Nationalism from lib and some cautious trading (to avoid becoming anyone's worst enemy) allows for fairly rapid catchup to the immortal AI. We neglect military here since everyone in the world has an eligible target at a lower disposition, and build infrastructure. We agree to tribute demands but tend to ignore other requests (tribute is the kind that can result in war if refused, the others are just -1 hits but don't have war auto-attached).

    Used a scientist to bulb printing press and actually got democracy first. After democracy, a run to econ/corp and then out to assembly line, which we get before 1600 AD. The idea is to tech to industrialism, and use marines to snag coastal cities and get most of the AIs in the game to capitulate. Once at industrialism, we can set the slider to all gold and gain a reasonably quick means of producing massed military. Intended victory condition is UN off vassals, domination, or conquest.

    Tech picture as of 1600 AD:



    The save if anyone wants to see it:

    View attachment TheMeInTeam REX AD-1600.CivBeyondSwordSave
     
  3. Shurdus

    Shurdus Am I Napoleon?

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    Very nice. You are however making a nice profit at 0% slider so maybe the crucial moment is a bit earlier where you founded a few cities and can barely make ends meet at 0%. This is however a nice demo on how rexxing can be done.

    Btw, currency is a pretty important tech in my book. Is there any reason why you waited so long to get it?
     
  4. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam Top Logic

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    Getting monarchy took priority. Alpha was teched to reach currency. I chose math/alpha then CoL to open up philosophy as a bulb since I realized I could still get taoism. I'm not exactly a shrine whore but the religion spreads rapidly when isolated so it was free :) and some science (monastery) to found it...not to mention delaying the AIs from liberalism.

    Note that I was NEVER making worse than 10 gpt positive while expanding once I got pottery- the cities were set and working cottages early. One trick I used which can be seen if you look in the save is food sharing between cities - first city uses food to grow, then once it nears :) cap switches to all cottage or hammer tiles (close to stagnation) while another city is founded to use the food. The capitol shared the corn that way, and other cities shared pigs/etc.

    Still working something like 2 riverside cottages nets more commerce than a gold mine pretty quickly - so with that much grassland it was pretty easy to keep commerce up. Also, we can't ignore CHA here, that was letting me work extra tiles!
     
  5. The Rook

    The Rook King

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    On the negative side, the spread would keep out foreign religions when you meet your rivals. The chances are that natural spread would net you 4-6 different religions if you've founded a decent number of cities on a religion free continent. This obviously gives you more diplo options, and could open the door to an easy culture victory later on.
     
  6. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam Top Logic

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    Yes, but I wanted the :) early...I have done culture in isolation on immortal before but as a rule I don't LIKE going for culture.

    IMO the most important/useful aspect of bulbing philosophy is that AIs don't tend to prioritize it once founded, and this delays liberalism! Lib isn't a sure bet on immortal @ 1000 AD, but you have a reasonable chance @ it. However, if you DO get taoism/philosophy first, the odds are actually quite good.

    Edit: Also, I was able to make use of pacifism + caste with this setup, which actually markedly sped research.
     
  7. The Rook

    The Rook King

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    Lib is gettable well before 1000 ad without religion in isolation at Immortal. I'm not saying that your strategy was bad, but I think there is a large payoff for committing yourself to one unpopular religion for the whole game. Even if you don't go cultural, you are losing much potential happiness if you plan on running FR when you meet your rivals (effectively 2 for every religion acquired). More importantly, you effectively concede the possibility of receiving a popular religion for war immunity, tech whoring, bribes and possible back door diplo wins. If you have reasonable land you could catch up anyway should the unthinkable happen and you lose the Lib race.
     
  8. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam Top Logic

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    Anyway, I've played this further, but at that point it's just mass war @ industrialism. If anyone wants to see it, I'll post it. It's 1932 AD at the moment, and everyone is my vassal, except for mehmed and mansa (master/vassal) who are ahead of me in tech thanks to my war spree. Cyrus was killed off completely.

    I razed the UN along with one of the pericles culture cities, so no nuke resolution was ever passed. I have about 15 tacs and intend to get about 48 (should take about 10 turns to get that many) and then try to 1 shot all of mehmed + mansa's coastal cities and raze them. That should be good enough for capitulation + domination.
     
  9. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam Top Logic

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    Onward to a free speech version of hell!

    At first, all goes as planned. Hit industrialism in the EARLY 1700's:





    and start prepping for the use of the American UU (wait...they had one?!)...against rifles. The obvious first target was culture whore pericles, but...



    I'm not sure what prompted this. Probably because I refused a demand while he was at war with cyrus, which was stopped diplomatically. At any rate, it wasn't one of his brighter moves, as I already had an appreciable force of SEALS and a metal navy. He had neither a metal navy nor anything better than rifles.



    BUT, I couldn't ignore pericles. His religion founding set him very close to culture.



    And so I go in...pericles DOES have infantry by this point, but concentrated firepower from the sea isn't the AIs strong suit to defend:





    I burn 4 of his top 5 culture cities (the ones on the coast) and



    Excellent. You stay that way then.

    Back to the burger king, who now has machine guns but still no infantry!



    I also bothered to get flight so I could use fighters to bombard. Screw airlifts though. I like to transport people in boats.

    Anyway this wasn't hard and it was a fast cap after grabbing his shrine city:



    And then I used him to stage a pincer attack on cyrus, fighers + SEALS from HRE, and a naval support invasion:



    Only trouble is, being behind in tech now from all the rush buy:



    Look at that? Doesn't that look bad? A tech deficit on immortal! So how does this impact the invasion?



    Hmm.

    Rome is next, since mehmed is strong and has mansa as a vassal.



    Even with modern armor for rome, the naval strikes were too much. I'd just take the cities, burn them, and delete the SEAL. Eventually he capped.

    Now this leaves the game-ending situation:



    Mehmed, as I would come to find out later, was on par with me in power, and clearly ahead in tech. With no UN anymore, the only way anyone was winning was culture, military, or space. Mehmed was far ahead in the space race. MM was pushing culture:



    However, with my kind of production and NO UN, there IS a way to defeat him easily, even though he has every relevant military tech in the game. Observe:





    Some dubious locations for nukes, perhaps? There are subs with enough nukes loaded to launch 4 tacticals at every coastal city both mehmed and mansa musa have, and a small contingent of SEALS to raze each city stationed alongside them.

    This, my fellow forumers, is the setup for the legendary 1-shot nuking.

    The result? And note the year!







    When they're all your vassals, it's conquest!

    Check out what nukes can do to power!!!!



    And I get a crappy score for finishing late, but it was fun.



    Mehmed's post-nuke lands



    And some gameplay stats



    That concludes this little demonstration. The important part is early. HOWEVER, if you want to see some fun with nukes, I'll attach the save on the turn I invaded :devil:. Enjoy!

    View attachment TheMeInTeam AD-1949.CivBeyondSwordSave
     
  10. Verision

    Verision Chieftain

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    Wow, I don't think I've ever seen a -54 on the diplo screen before (Mehmed: You nuked us!). That's pretty impressive.

    Do you suggest always taking capitulation?
    I ask because on one of those victory condition screens you only needed about another 10% land area to win a domination. If you had taken all of Pericles' land instead of taking his capitulation, wouldn't you have won much sooner (and without having to build rediculous amounts of tactical nukes)?
     
  11. sylvanllewelyn

    sylvanllewelyn Perma-newb

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    I can reproduce your later part of the game, but I could not get anywhere near what you are having in 1AD. Not that it matters too much in this game... but if you weren't isolated, not being in a strong 1AD position does matter.

    And 3:24 playtime for this result is just... wow.
     
  12. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam Top Logic

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    Expand ASAP onto the special tiles and improve/work them. Cottages are a means to foot the bill for doing it. Other than those, you can just keep building workers/settlers and improving the land, which is very similar to what I actually did.

    Keep in mind I locked out the barbs with only warriors, so you have to know how to do that if you want to skip having to build chariots and so forth.

    3:24 is a slow time for me but the 1950's finish is late and that's why.

    It depends. I'd have probably needed to completely wipe perciles and possibly even charlemagne to secure domination that way. It sounds good in theory, but there are pitfalls:

    - I'd have needed a reliable means to take and hold territory on pericles' island, and that would have slowed me down a lot compared to raze+cap.

    - If I were any slower, charlemagne might have had infantry...again slowing me down

    - Cyrus would have had more time and might have gotten to mech infantry

    - If any of the above took to long, I'd have to stop the war to deal with mansa pushing for culture, thus throwing me into war with mehmed anyway.

    - Extended wars against the AI leaves me open to a mehmed backstab, once he fell to cautious.

    Granted, it might have been better, maybe not. I try to keep wars to as few turns as possible, although sometimes because of the capping rules I will bother to wipe people out entirely (like cyrus).

    I hit mehmed with 27 nukes and mansa with 11. I probably had some others intercepted. Regardless, ~50 nukes isn't THAT ridiculous. A tactical nuke costs less than 2 infantry! They're not much more than tanks. Yes, you need to use subs to carry then (unless you can launch from vassal or even local OB cities, that is, in my case 2 cities could be reached that way), but you'd need transports or carriers for other military shipping too. Because they have 50% evade of SDI, they only get shot down 37.5% of the time, and 2 hitting a city is usually enough to kill most of the troops in there leaving 1-3 units with around 5 health, and that's only if the AI has bunkers and the SDI! But even under that worst-case scenario, it's an amazing :hammers::kills conversion.

    The war vs mehmed was the easiest of all the wars (even though he nuked me and vassals back like 8 times). I actually destroyed 15 tac nukes by taking the cities that had them, so he only got us w/ ICBMs :p. It only took about 20 turns to set that invasion up (Had leftover SEALS, so rush bought nukes both on cyrus/charlie territory and home and made some subs). Nukes can be based in the target's cities, then picked up by your subs just before the invasion (seems kind of wrong, but whatever :evil:), so it's actually not that hard to set up.

    Completely torching every coastal city an AI has instantly is enough fun that it's worth delaying the game just to do it actually :lol:. 3 turn war and an immortal AI superpower gets thrashed to a handful of cities and capped! Haha! I burned double the cities I founded...
     
  13. Verision

    Verision Chieftain

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    That, I can understand. I've had more than one game go sour due to being unable to hold the territory I've taken on an AI's island.
    Thanks for the explanation
     
  14. Bei1052

    Bei1052 Emperor

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    So the general plan is to beeline Alphabet, after which you shut down research completely, build/whip a library in each of your cities, run two specialists while building research in all but two cities, of which one city will be dedicated to troops and another to building settlers? Hmmm...

    *runs off to try*
     
  15. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam Top Logic

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    You shut down research after WRITING, so you can build libraries and use that gold to run w/ higher commerce multipliers. From there on research is done in spurts, to take advantage of new modifiers that pop up.

    You don't need a lot of cities running scientists...just enough to earn the necessary GPP to spawn GS. Non-rep specialists are a poor deal compared to grassland cottages unless they're getting you a material amount of GPP.

    For creating/working cottage cities I suggest the strategy article by DaveMCW - should help a lot with using cottage cities.

    Your hammer cities can be used for military, or if that's not needed (often isn't) it can build wonders or wealth.
     
  16. Lord Chambers

    Lord Chambers Emperor

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    It's good enough to win on Immortal, but in under four hours? I am truly impressed. I...don't know how you do it. I've read your tips and watched a youtube game, but it's still doesn't seem possible.
     
  17. Fluxx

    Fluxx Mr. Almost There

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    If you set your settings right, it is way easier to play fast games.
    Especially if you play them often.
    Thinks like no unit animations, fast moving, and fast attacking of unit stack helps ALOT.

    Rest is just practice :p
     

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