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Exploring the potential for ICS in civ6

Discussion in 'Civ6 - Strategy & Tips' started by TheDuckOfFlanders, Oct 23, 2016.

  1. TheDuckOfFlanders

    TheDuckOfFlanders the fish collecter

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    First to give a short introduction to what ICS means in a civilization context: it stands for "infinite city sprawl" and it's basicly about a tactic that you persue where every city that you'd settle extra would only make you stronger.

    There are points where this could have seemed interresting in certain civ games and reasons why it wasn't really in Civ5. I will want to cover these considerations in the context of civ 6 and issue's that civ6 presents itself in regards to this strat.

    - no increased tech cost per new founded city
    One of the main reasons why ICS seemed uninterresting in Civ5 was because tech costs increased per settle'd city, furthermore settling more city's could delay you from important buildings like National college. These issue's are not present in civ6, because tech costs don't increase per city there seems to be compelling reason to go "wider".

    - "happyness" is less of an issue whereas housing is
    Another crucial matter for ICS is that the strategy really depended on how much hapyness you could get. Having watched a number of games played by Filthyrobot it appears to me that he is much more limited in any case by housing that hapyness which shows by the fact that he practicly never builds hapyness districts or buildings.
    Considering being strapped by housing ICS actually offers a sollution to that in that any new settled city comes with some "free housing" of itself. i wondred if the fact that filthy hadn't been compelled to build hapyness buildings constituted a missed opportunity by him, namely that he could have supported more people had he build those hapyness buildings in combination with settling more city's rather than being housing strapped when not strapped by hapyness.

    - Costs of buildings and units can scale by the amount already build
    This is a limitation introduced by civ6 that would seem to work agaisnt the idea of ICS, as there are some deminishing returns to settling more city's if this leads to a significantly larger/crippling investment in settlers and builders. Furthermore ICS might leave city's with less tiles to work and ultimatly less maximum production per city. HOWEVER:

    -The amount of production adding caravans or production adding districts one can have depends on the amount of city's and associated districts the player has.
    Which means that while adding more city's will up the hammer costs of districts and units, that more city's also allows to have more production districts to alleviate that. this seems especially true for Japan who can build factory's within industrial districts that have an AOE of 6 tiles. Indeed that district is only becomming more potent with more city's in it's AOE and the amount of such AOE fatory's you can stack depend on the number of city's.

    So it appears to me that while some potential issue's exist for ICS in civ6 with increasing distict/unit costs, that the lack of techcost increase stimmulate's towards more city's and so does the potential of caravans and production increasing districts potentially so much that they might easily payback the increasing costs.
    It appears to me that Jappan could be a particulary good civ for this tactic.

    Afcourse i might have overlooked more potential issue's, or opportunity's for that matter. Further input be it about what might help the strat or potentially kill it would be appreciated.
     
    Rexfelis69 and Captain Sharpe like this.
  2. Browd

    Browd Dilettante Administrator

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    Moderator Action: Moved to Strategy & Tips
     
  3. KrikkitTwo

    KrikkitTwo Immortal

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  4. stormtrooper412

    stormtrooper412 Peacemongering Turtlesaur

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    there doesn't seem to be that many "per pop" boosts, so yes, it looks like ICS is quite doable
     
  5. King Jason

    King Jason Fleece-bearer

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    It's totally possible but honestly after a certain amount there's really no point. With the tedium involved in having more cities, I haven't gone above 8 at this point and it has in no way hindered my ability to win even on high difficulties. I could have expanded indefintely but unless the interface gets streamlined to the point where there are production ques and you can assign trade routes efficiently - I can't think of a reason I'd actually want to ICS.

    Though I suppose might change on maps larger than standard.
     
  6. Japper007

    Japper007 Prince

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    Civ 6 has ICS potential (especially with the bonuses from industrial and entertainment district overlapping and stacking!), but I don't think it'll end up being the optimal path. I'd much rather spend my hammers (or is it "cogs" now?) upgrading my great river located city then spend those hammers founding a crummy desert city that'll start at just two housing and be miserable pretty much all game long.

    Nothing wrong with ICS being possible, but it's a problem if it's the only solid strategy.
     
  7. Nefelia

    Nefelia Prince

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    Those '******' cities are great for producing the districts you don't want to have in your core cities. I've been using them for Theatre Squares, as well as extra Commercial Districts (more trade routes and loads of gold).
     
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  8. Zenstrive

    Zenstrive Ocean King

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    Making new cities are easy in Civ VI.
    What's not easy is actually building anything in them due to the increased costs of the districts and civilian units.
    On King, on Continents Large Map, the AIs not my on continent have half of the continent empty, and I tried to colonize it (much to the wrath of cute lil' Vicky), but I stopped at two cities there since building districts took the time it need for my coastal city to grow from one to 7.
     
  9. Nefelia

    Nefelia Prince

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    One of the solutions to that is to harvest some of the local resources. At late game, stone or cows don't matter much: districts and triangle farms are much better. Harvesting them should give you enough production and food to get a significant head start on whatever your production goals are.
     
  10. MkLh

    MkLh King

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    Currently play on Deity and have (only) 20 cities 500AD (should have more). ICS is definitely the way to go. In other words, you should fill every possible place with cities. There is no true penalty. Settlers will become more expensive, but unlike districts etc. they can be bought with cash, which is an unlimited resource in this game.

    Amenities are too rare and expensive for "tall" strategies. Also barbs becomes a true nuisance around renaissance. Their spam rate like triples. You can't possible leave any spot free for barb camps at that point. Of course you can fogbust with units, but given that units cost you more cash than cities without bringing any, it makes a little sense to do so.
     
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  11. Frank327

    Frank327 Warlord

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    I think the most important thing in this context is building cities in a ring around your capital of around 6 tiles. Give the Colosseum boost to all those cities and have all those cities build factories inward facing. Then you'll get huge AoE bonuses that let all your cities grow big and have huge production bonuses in all cities.
     
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  12. TheDuckOfFlanders

    TheDuckOfFlanders the fish collecter

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    On the note of that ring, first ill show you an amateurisch illustration i made:



    I wanted to know just how much you could do with overlap, and in this case were looking at a factory with an area of effect of 6 tiles outward.Red is the factory, green zone it's AoE, blue dots are city's planted in a theoretical perfect pattern with 3 spaces in between, not realistic but just for illustration. It would show that at max a single factory can cover 10 city's, and i guess that also means that 1 single city could be covered by 10 AoE factory's. Whereas the ideal situation will unlikely come to pass, even with a bit less it still looks huge, and afcourse we have also to consider that city's at the periphery will get less than those in the center, but even then if you can give 10 city's an average coverage by 6 factory's at +6 hammers each thats +360 hammers.

    Thx for pointing that out.

    Ics does indeed become uninterresting from the moment that you could get to youre victory quiker by internal micromanagement rather than by expansion. With other words the rate of interresting expansion is somewhat determined by the time it takes to grow to a critical size going towards youre end goal. You mention a large map, although i think it might be better to argue that ICS would rather be interresting for a larger part of the game on Epic game speed. ICS seems to be more interresting depending on just how much everything costs or how much time you have to move settlers across the map, i'd say ICS would be more interresting on a tiny map with epic game speed than a huge map with quick speed.

    I don't think it would be the only solid strategy and that it woudl be an issue with game balance. As to wether it's the optimal path ill keep to my remark stated above that it certainly depends on map size and game speed with small map+epic speed making it far more interresting than huge map + quick speed. Ultimatly wether ICS is interresting really depends on how much more bulk production would help in the circumstances.

    ICS strategy doesn't need to be maintained the whole game or so radical that every nook and cranny must be filled, just like a temprorary OCC strategy in Civ5 it would depend on the circumstances and it could be usefull "for a certain time".

    I see there is some impression that many new city's in ICS could be quite useless in their youth whereas the story of AoE factory's and more caravan's might shed a different light on it. A new city settled on the periphery of a civ that is also spamming AoE factory's and trade routes might have something like 30 hammers to start with and food to grow even when working no tiles. So i strongly agree with this sentiment of yours that city's that appear ****** don't nessecarily need to be so.

    I adressed this. More city's means increasing costs but also increased abbilety for production trough more trade route's and AoE factory's. Personally i think that a good ICS strategy will focus enough on actually getting the early production out of those city's too mitigate the increased costs and make a net overal gain. That said i must recognise that the AoE factory's are not available early on and that true ICS might start at the modern age. Now you might think that settling city's in the modern age is too late, but imho that doesn't need to be if they can be settled along the periphery within AoE of existing facoty's and supplied by trade route's so to start at something like 30 hammers innitially because that might be enough starting hammers to still get infrastructure up to be usefull towards victory..

    You make a good point regarding the gold and it combines well with the extra production/food benifit one would get of more trade route's trough more city's and trade districts. I'm quite interrested in the results of youre tests with ICS and happy to see it's being tried out with good results so far.
     
  13. Ferigno

    Ferigno Chieftain

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    Is there any advantage to actually running a trade route through a city with a commerce district, or is it just largely used to get the extra trade route and then finding an optimal place. I guess I've been running my trade routes through my capital, but I probably don't have a great reason for that. Where do you guys start your trade routes from? Is there an advantage to that?
     
  14. KrikkitTwo

    KrikkitTwo Immortal

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    Trade route origin and domestic path is basically irrelevant (Great Zimbabwe Wonder/Rome exception)

    Trade route yield depends on
    Districts (and sometimes resources) at the end point
    Trade posts in Foreign cities on the way (so you want to go far)
    policies
     
  15. Underseer

    Underseer King

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    One possible advantage of going wide is using it to spread your religion. Even if you aren't going for a religion victory, being able to generate a lot of religion-pressure (not sure what the correct term is) can prevent someone else from grabbing a religion victory while you're going for something else.
     
  16. LDiCesare

    LDiCesare Deity

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    Except you go far on land only. It looks like sea trade routes don't go through cities so aren't worth that much. I haven't seen a bonus for destination being on a different landmass for instance.
     
  17. Pennraugion

    Pennraugion Chieftain

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    First of all.
    Sorry for my bad english

    Yesterday i won a game on Immortal.
    Settings were all Standard (Standard Size, Standard Speed, Continents, Standard amount of AI)

    I played as Japan and the first few turns i researched Archery and Masonry.
    I spammed Archer and Warrior. And tried also to found as many cities as possible.
    The first Buildings in my new cities were without exception stonewalls.

    I was pretty lucky that my neighbours England and Skythia were attacking each other (instead of me)
    Perhaps because i had a few archers and stonewalls? I don't know exactly.


    I was able to Play a Builder-Game and decided to found cities very nearby to my capital Kyoto.
    In Round 140 I researched Industrialization. Beforehand I tried to build Industrial Districts as soon as possible.
    I pretty beelined Industrialization. Not quite. But you would call it beelining
    In Round 155 the first 3 Factories were online.
    In Round 234 i researched Satellites. My Production in Kyoto was - thanks to the factories and Power plants nearby - 176,3
    46 from Factories, 44 from Power plants
    In Round 286 i won the game.
    i was pretty confused. I researched in Round 286 the last Tech for the mars Mission. I had already invested the Ingenieur for the +100% boost for Space Race Parts.
    The Scientist would give me 1.500 cogs ... as i klicked the scientist. The last part was instantly built. So i think that the Scientist get also the +100% boost (the last Parts costs 3.000 cogs for each Project)


    The Problem was to get the right Great People (Scientist for the cogs. And the Ingenieur for the +100% boost). I was forced to produce it hard over the endless projekt ... i don't know the english word for.
    But if you have a disctrict you can produce it in your city. For the Scientist you earn a Little bit Research and Scientist Points. For the Ingenieur you earn a Little bit Money and Ingenieur Points.

    A horrible City placed in Ice had in the end over 70 production per turn with a Population of 3 or 4.

    I tried to placed the cities as nearby as possible and focused on building a little army (for protection) and only Campus and industrial. A few Commercial. But nothing else.
    No Religion, No Harbor, No Entertainment, no Housing or whatever.

    So i think ... ICS is back
    Firaxis should fix this issue as soon as possible.

    With enough Production you have everything.
    You can produce Money, you can produce Research, you can Produce Culture ... and you can produce a little army. Only to be protected if an AI goes crazy
    Many of my cities had only a little Population. So Housing or Amenities was never a Problem.
    I only build 4 wonders. But you don't Need any Wonder. Ruhr and Forbitten Palace is nice to have. But the others ... i didn't care.


    I would have also a few Pictures. But there are in german. xD
    So if you wan't to see it

    Here is the link
     
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  18. elitetroops

    elitetroops Deity

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    This was pretty much my experience as well. I got rocketry to start building spaceports t189, got the last required tech t222 and finished the last mars module t225 (standard size continents, normal speed, emperor, Russia). That is a very short time to collect Great People, even when spamming the research and industrial projects in every available city. Since I only had 16 cities, this was not enough to get to the best Great People. No Information era scientists or engineers (=those that can get +100% or +3000 production towards space projects) appeared before I was done. With twice as many cities, I might have reached them. I only had the +20% and the +1500 production Engineers. Also, I didn't quite 1 turn all the late techs, it was 33 turns for 19 techs (science peaked at just under 900/turn). This would also have improved a lot with a larger empire. I think 30 cities would be a good target for a fast science victory.

    I also agree that housing and large cities are not needed at all. I built one +6 neighborhood each in my 3 spaceport cities and might have put one up somewhere else, but in hindsight I might have been better of building settlers and builders. Built no aqueducts at all.

    I am happy to find that the Information era great people aren't necessary for a fast space victory. Watching the previews, I was a bit worried that Great People appearing in random order could screw up an otherwise great game. Based on my experience from the first game, I'd say you can with proper planning launch the next turn after teching the last tech, even if you only have the earlier GEs for +20% and 1500 production. I failed to do so in this game mainly because the last part of the tech tree flew by so fast that my builders weren't in place to chop and harvest in time.

    The other thing I found is that the hardest thing to build is your first spaceport. That one doesn't get any bonuses from the GE or the Military policy that boosts space projects, so it's way slower than the satellite or the moon landing. Next time I'll focus more on having a city ready to produce the first space port much faster.
     
  19. TheDuckOfFlanders

    TheDuckOfFlanders the fish collecter

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    You made a great post, pictures were good for getting an impression too. I quoted the specific line above as i think it cuts at the heart of the matter. ICS typicly was about settling ever more "hapyness neutral" city's, or with other words there being no added cost to endless expansion. It appears that filling the map with as much small city's as possible is viable hapyness/housing wise and perfectly opportune. Needing no entertainment districts to make this work even sounds like a significant balancing issue.
     
  20. Pennraugion

    Pennraugion Chieftain

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    Round 225 is great

    Okay.
    This could mean, if you have more and more cities (founded nearby your other cities, so the AoE of the Industry Districts of your cities affects new founded cities of yours also, you would win Space Race even earlier.
    Turn 200 would be possible ... or even below Turn 200


    I would say, Firaxis have to patch the industrial district as far as possible.
    Maybe the AoE of the Industrial should be only 3 instead of 6 Hexes?
    Or for an example a stacking Penalty?
    Or you remove the AoE from the industrial and give factories and power plant more free cogs?

    Removing the AoE would be sad.
    But in this current version of Civ6, this feature is in my opinion broken
     

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