expansion - how fast?

kasperaksel

Chieftain
Joined
Oct 27, 2016
Messages
3
i was wondering, how fast do you build your first settlers?

i tend to prioritize my capital, building some districts and a small defence army before expanding, what is your strategy here?

do you sit tight - or spam settlers immediately?
 

Asaris

Chieftain
Joined
Nov 9, 2001
Messages
9
I try to get a second city pretty fast, and then it depends on how much competition for land it looks like there'll be.
 
Joined
Mar 18, 2015
Messages
834
Location
Los Angeles
I set up an army first--my starting warrior plus at least two slingers. More are needed if an AI is close or there are barb issues. Then I grab a builder to get a bunch of Eurekas. The settler is next on the priority list after that.
 

alpaca

King of Ungulates
Joined
Aug 3, 2006
Messages
2,322
For me it's more like Slinger, Slinger, Slinger, Archer, Archer, Warrior, Builder, Archer, Archer, Settler, then start working on districts and/or highly useful buildings. On Emperor and above, you want to archer rush your neighbor, which tends to provide you with 2-3 cities (either through conquest or through captured settlers).

That said, settlers are significantly more efficient than districts and buildings at the start of the game. Due to the way district cost escalates and the larger bonuses provided, you probably want to emphasize industrial, harbor and commercial districts and keep away from campuses and theatres for the most part (unless playing for culture victory). Great persons are pretty weak and the AI always generates a crapton of points.
 
Joined
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Messages
834
Location
Los Angeles
For me it's more like Slinger, Slinger, Slinger, Archer, Archer, Warrior, Builder, Archer, Archer, Settler, then start working on districts and/or highly useful buildings. On Emperor and above, you want to archer rush your neighbor, which tends to provide you with 2-3 cities (either through conquest or through captured settlers).

Yeah, if there's a good rush target, the Settler can sometimes wait a long time. The AI pretty consistently has 1 or 2 Settlers hanging around its cities (something it should be programmed not to do!)
 

Ryika

Lazy Wannabe Artista
Joined
Aug 30, 2013
Messages
9,395
What are extra cities needed for anyway early on? They don't generate much, the growth they lose by not being set up early is rather small on the grand scale.

Overall my goal is usually to not build settlers until I have the 50% policy. Of course that only works out smoothly if the capital has enough growth to get to 6 pop for the boost, or if there's a nice target for some military action that you can actually take cities from before Horsemen kick in.
 

JustMormegil

Chieftain
Joined
Oct 24, 2016
Messages
37
Location
Moscow, Russian Federation
Depending on starting position, if capital production potential is high, than Scout -> Warrior -> Setter -> Builder. The second city -> buy builder -> chop one more builder if possible -> ...

If capital is poor, than warrior -> settler -> find good production spot -> settle there -> buy builder -> ...

It always depends on setup: barbs, other civs location, starting position defensiveness, city states (you can get +2 production for units, which helps with settler/builder production also), etc. Know you strength :)
 

lamaros

Warlord
Joined
Dec 6, 2005
Messages
208
Depends how much production I have. If the city has high production but low growth I will normally do it earlier. If it has very high growth I'll normally grow to around 4-5 before doing it.

Also I don't build scouts anymore. They're almost useless against barbarians so I rarely bother unless I have a good spot where it's easy to head off any possible barbarian scouting.
 

Huaojozumakurwa

Chieftain
Joined
Oct 26, 2016
Messages
22
Keep in mind that due to bonuses on Emperor and above, making a bunch of Slingers is super fast. You can even go Builder first to trigger the Inspiration by building 3 improvements, grab the policy that increases your Slinger/Archer production and the +1 hammer in all cities, and churn out Slingers/Archers every 2/3 turns. Upgrading to an Archer is only 30 gold, so you can easily build 3 Slingers while hard teching archery, upgrade them all, build another one, then destroy your neighbor with 1 warrior / 4 archers, at least on Emperor. The AI is so useless in battle that I managed to destroy 2 civilizations and 3 city states with 2 warriors and 5 archers (often split) without using a single unit.

I used to prioritize early settlers or buildings, but seeing how quickly you can get a military up and how quickly you can conquer your first neighbor, there is no contest.

So to answer your question, I build mass settlers after conquering my first neighbor (or when victory is assured and no more units are needed), which usually coincides quite nicely into Early Empire. I used the conquered capital to churn out settlers too, usually building 4-5 immediately to end up with 6-8 core cities. If I am alone on the rest of the continent or if the next enemy is far away, I build even more.

Last game as Germany I conquered Greece, 3 city states and had 25 cities by 0 AD.
 

Esperr

King
Joined
Jun 22, 2012
Messages
868
I try to hit at least five citys before t100, built in such a way as to maximize factory overlap early on. If I have just a flat out bad start I wont build any settlers of my own ussually. But end up with 5 citys by t100 anyway, if you catch my drift.
 

Victoria

Regina
Supporter
Joined
Apr 11, 2011
Messages
11,883
Am playing avoiding dominance, I always try and start on a hill.
Scout great for those first envoys and a couple of villages before no escape is possible. Seems to help my game a lot so I build it first regardless.
Slinger, monument, settler. Those settlers need to be out early if you are not going to try and steal them off another civ (you are easily forgiven for stealing an early settler)
I want 4 cities quick as luxuries spread 4 ways.
Then overseas for a few more or sweeten people up for a swapsy depending on who is near.
 

budweiser

King of the Beers
Joined
Jun 18, 2003
Messages
5,251
Location
Hidden Underground Volcano Lair
FAST!

Scout, Builder, Settler if the city is size 2 or 3 and can make in about 12 turns. Then a Trader and then more Settlers. Fill the land with 3 to 5 cities. Purchase other stuff with gold as you go.
 

Konfuchie

Chieftain
Joined
Oct 25, 2016
Messages
12
I usually wait until my capital is about to hit 5 population than I go for settler. Before that I make sure I have a builder or two, 2 scouts, and some army for barbs and rush defense. Scouts are extremely useful so going less than 2 is not an option, especially on a pangaea map. Building settler at 5 pop will kick the population down to 4 so I build again, city grows to 5, settler pops out again, until I am happy with my 3-6 expansions. If I notice, settler building will knock the pop down to 3 I build something in between so I don't loose workers working those precious tiles in my capital for too long. But it can be worth waiting for 50% settler production card in some cases when your expansions early will not be extremely valuable and you don't expect other civs to take your expansion locations.
 

aR2k

Chieftain
Joined
Oct 28, 2016
Messages
5
Scout—slinger—(another slinger if high pressure or early war, but that usually means no setler at all)—builder—(then setler if growth is decent or another slinger first)
 

Lucius_

King
Joined
Dec 3, 2012
Messages
806
I usually go scout, builder, then settler. After that all depends on the situation, could be slinger, settler, holy site. If my 2nd city can build settlers less than 12 turns with the 50% reduction policy, then it will make a settler or two as soon as it hits pop 2. To answer your question though, as quickly as reasonably possible. I'll usually try to get 4 cities up and running, with a couple districts and tiles improved, then start working on more settlers if there are still decent settling locations available.
 

rrrwww

Chieftain
Joined
Oct 20, 2016
Messages
31
on deity with close neighbours who are likely aggresseve: scout-army of 6-10 with a worker somewhere-capture a few cities-settler spam

on deity with peaceful starting position: scout-builder-monument maybe-settler spam. this is assuming barbs are turned off

the military start is actually more effective though, since an army of 10 can take many cities early on, especially on slower speeds
 

avl8

Prince
Joined
Oct 4, 2010
Messages
362
On emperor I go scout, builder, monument (hit agoge) >> slinger, slinger, slinger, shrine, settler, settler.
 

SeismoGraf

Warlord
Joined
Jul 17, 2009
Messages
169
My recommendation would depend on how you play the game:

A) If you grab unescorted AI settlers: just build units, take all the free settlers, eliminate your neighbours. Win on deity in under 150 turns. Walk in the park. I hope the "suicidal settlers" will be a thing of the past soon...

B) If you don't grab unescorted AI settlers I'd suggest:

B1) "Fast expand": Scout -> Warrior -> Settler
B2) "Blitz expand": Warrior -> Settler (can be very strong as Rome, if you can find a good city spot in time)
B3) "Rush": no settler, only build units to take out a city state or DoW a neighbour

Getting a 2nd city usually improves your short-tern production by around 70% (palace gives 2h after all and you lose one pop for the settler). The main drawback of settling early is limited map knowledge.

Barbarian waves can usually be defeated with 2 units. Rush buy a slinger for 140g if needed. Builders don't contribute enough to the early economy for their cost and there is the risk of improvements getting pillaged.

The city centre can have up to 3 hammers or 4 food (e.g sugar marsh or citrus grassland). As usual, also consider settling on tiles that give gold/faith/culture/science.
 
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