Fast elimination of rivals, how?

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Strategy & Tips' started by JoeBlade, Apr 20, 2008.

  1. JoeBlade

    JoeBlade Warlord

    Feb 1, 2006
    I've repeatedly witnessed players clear entire continents with 2-3 rival civs by 1000AD or even earlier on these forums, and I can't for the world of me fathom how they manage to do so :eek: No matter how hard I try I rarely accomplish such a feat before 1500AD, even at Prince level and with an excellent early UU (say, Egypt or Persia) And at Epic speed as well, just for the record.

    Either I chop and whip like a madman, optimising overflow as much as possible and working high-hammer tiles when available but then I tend to witness my economy plummet beyond the STRIKE limit before I'm halfway through (and yes, all this while keeping only the very best rival cities and pillaging where possible)
    Most of the time however I just cannot field an army large enough to overcome the other civs. There's always at least one city with a) many fortified archers on a hill or b) protective archers or c) huge cultural defenses (e.g. holy city) and/or walls, which ends up costing me a dozen or so troops to capture, usually bringing my advance to a grinding halt for many turns to come. Also, producing a large army quickly usually requires several cities, often pointing back to the former case (upkeep issues) :sad:

    So what's the secret then? Is it just a matter of luck or am I missing out on something obvious? Or does this tactic perhaps only work with the appropriate resources (e.g. several early gems/gold/silver tiles)?
    Above all, is it really worth aiming for in the first place?
  2. Belisar

    Belisar Defender of Byzanz

    Apr 24, 2003
    There are a number of factors that are to be considered when talking about early military expansion.

    First of all is the land itself (size) and the number of AIs on the continent.
    While it is desiarable to own the whole continent, the timing is important.
    You don't gain much if you have conquered more than your eco can swallow.
    Also, if you eliminate your neighbours early, you are isolated, which can lead to slow teching compared to the other continent(s) (at least on higher levels).

    The distance to the first target is also important. A near opponent means a high chance for an ultra early axe or chariot rush. Otherwise the first wave of expansion will be postboned (when cats and/or spies are available).

    As a rule of thumb: Settle the good sites first, then, when there are no good sites left, go and conquer some more with a quick strike.

    Depending on the size of the landmass, several wars may be necessary.
    Try to minmize the actual war turns, expand in "waves", have a look at your eco (and what it can handle) and the diplo situation, plan ahead and coordinate the expansion with key techs like CoL, currency, construction, nationhood and such things.

    Your last question is the most important one. Owning the continent as early as possible is not the most efficient way of expansion if you are on a big landmass.
  3. DMOC

    DMOC Mathematician

    Aug 23, 2007
    Do you have some screenshots that I could see? Or a save game? That would help me and many other people who want to help you the most we can.

    If you make screenshots, could you make some of the overall map, and the inside of cities, which gives us a lot of vital information.
  4. obsolete

    obsolete Deity

    Dec 17, 2005
    Planet Earth
    2-pop whip trick baby....
  5. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam Top Logic

    Jan 26, 2008
    When combined with low-casualty warfare, it's almost silly how quickly you can wipe a civ or two out.

    On that note, after the axe or chariot rush period is over, always use the best siege you can, and bring enough so you don't run out.
  6. Jazzmail

    Jazzmail King

    Jul 23, 2005
    Also, if you cannot eliminate your opponent, consider choking him. This is sometimes even better than a true elimination and it gets the job done.
    Fortify some archers next to all his cities (hope it's just 1 or 2), preferably on a forested hill. Then watch as your the AI keeps his workers and settlers inside.

    Don't forget to pillage AI improvements, at the very least disconnect their copper, iron and horses. At some point you may also have to bring some reinforcements.

    The cons of this trick are higher supply upkeep and an angry AI.
    The pros are this AI will be trailing at the botom of the power chart, instead of you and it's continued existince may give you better opportunites to trade with other civs.
  7. laughingvulcan

    laughingvulcan Chieftain

    Feb 7, 2007
    I've found that when I'm trying to take out a neighbor that I often have to stop for awhile because my civ is growing too fast and I'm getting into some serious city maintenance problems. That tends to work out well anyway. I've reduced their civ to perhaps just a couple of cities, so they are no longer a threat to me. Then, while I'm paying attention to my infrastructure (libraries, courthouses, and so on) I become their friends. We become friends the fastest if we end up with the same religion, but you can give them some resources for free for awhile, and try and get open borders.

    The benefit to being their friend is that, for me anyway, I always seem to be behind in the tech race early in the game. If I've just engaged in war for awhile and neglected my infrastucture, that's even moreso the case. So this civ that I failed to conquer usually has a handful of techs that I don't have. I beeline to techs it has failed to achieve and start making trades as soon as they are friendly enough. I don't have to worry about giving them techs that might be dangerous to me militarily, since they're too small to be of concern. I don't even have to worry if the trades are seriously unfair to me, since being much bigger I will outtech them and soon trade for what they know anyway.

    After awhile, they don't know any techs that I no longer do. Then, you know, no matter how friendly we've become :) I seriously consider taking them out the rest of the way.

    Of course, you have to consider if there is anyone else on your island and if your new friend will trade away techs to your enemies. I usually play a small world and this is often not an issue. Also, even when I do have enemies close by, they often already know the techs I am trading away to my weaker partner. Anyway, I play at emporer level and I've had a lot of success with letting them live for awhile.
  8. JTMacc99

    JTMacc99 That's a paddlin'

    Jan 10, 2008
    Hmm, I just started a game and because I wanted to use the Immortals when I had the chance, I wiped the map clean of Justinian and got me a holy city in the process. Now, it is VERY lonely on my little half-desert continent. I need to rush through the navigation techs now, just to have somebody to trade with.
  9. DaveMcW

    DaveMcW Deity

    Oct 8, 2002
    Workers and Catapults.
  10. Olodune

    Olodune Emperor GOTM Staff

    May 21, 2007
    Once Maths is researched don't be afraid to chop out an army either. Sometimes I will even start an early golden age if I need a troop surge to completely take down an opponent in a catapult war.

    Workers are invaluable for connecting resources, improving specials AND chop building, strategic road construction.

    Catapults are needed to destroy large stacks efficiently (so you can keep your army mostly intact and moving to the next target). Longbows on hilled cities are still expensive to take though.

    Economically I often prefer Currency before Code of Laws to enable the assimilation of lots of land quickly. (Unless your leader is Org).
  11. Olodune

    Olodune Emperor GOTM Staff

    May 21, 2007
    For a catapult heavy strategy try Wang Kon, he has financial to quickly pick up the Mathematics->Construction line and his UU is a catapult. Just be wary of flank attacking HAs ... :mischief:
  12. OTAKUjbski

    OTAKUjbski TK421

    Mar 4, 2007
    not at my post
    QFT. (x2)

    I think the 'secret' is a strong economic base -- perhaps a specialist-heavy city or one with Gold or Gems or lots of Cottage-able tiles.

    The reason you seldom hear about these cities is because the focus is on the military and how its being produced. Little do you know 4 of the 7 cities are busy working Cottages and Specialists. ;)
  13. Gocho

    Gocho Warlord

    Aug 30, 2007
    Ontario, Canada
    Lately I've found myself not rushing the closest neighbor so much but instead picking the one I want to kill first and just keep him pillaged for the free workers and I don't have to push so hard to whip/chop out an army. Yeah you may get a -1/-2 penalty with another civ for declaring on their *friend* a few times but the ability to rex while keeping an AI down then go claim their lands when you are ready to has certainly improved my game.
  14. Vynd

    Vynd Prince

    Dec 30, 2001
    I'm no good at these super-fast kill everyone on the continent strategies myself. But from reading other's descriptions of doing it some of the tips IU've heard are:

    Chop like there's no tomorrow. Whipping is good too, but chopping is especially important.

    Once you have enough tech to build whatever units you feel you need, shut off research and save all your money. You can worry about research again after the wars.

    Get Caste System and run as many Merchants as possible to keep your economy afloat.

    Hit everyone early, when they have only 2 or 3 cities and are relying on Archers, even if that means simultaneous wars. Pick one guy to concentrate most of your forces on but send a few units into everyone else's territory. Use those few units to pillage if possible (especially any metals) but also to fortify in places that will scare them into keeping their Workers and Settlers at home. If done successfully they'll be more or less stuck as they are, small and weak, meaning they'll be easy to come and actually kill later. At least that's the theory. I'm totally incapable of pulling this one off. :)
  15. royal62184

    royal62184 Prince

    Aug 22, 2007
    Oak Ridge, TN
    Could someone explain why whip when it takes 2 pop is a good thing? When you can wait and get it for 1 pop. Please elaborate.
  16. Johnpecan

    Johnpecan Warlord

    Jan 16, 2008
    You get more hammers for whipping 2 pop, compared to 1. A 2-whip is more efficient than 2 separate 1-whips because whipping on 2 separate occasions will cause unhappiness for longer, preventing you from whipping for longer. That's my reasoning at least.
  17. Smakemupagus

    Smakemupagus Warlord

    Dec 14, 2006
    It makes sense if you remember that whip is a way to use your food rich tiles to make production.

    If you whip just one you lose a pop point, but can't grow for a while because of the anger.

    When you whip two you still only get +1:mad: from the cruel oppression, but -2:mad: since its less crowded. This lets you make use of your food rich tiles, as the town has room to grow again while they forget about the oppression.
  18. Bradlius

    Bradlius Warlord

    Aug 9, 2006
    Los Angeles
    I wish someone could explain how whipping 20% of your population to an early grave makes the rest of the people happy. :lol:
    Even my nine-year-old sees the odd logic in that. "Haha, my people. You are unhappy. Therefore I will whip you mercilessly to build a Forge. Ah, now that's better, isn't it? Everybody's happy! Or at least, you are afraid to be openly unhappy."
  19. Ormur

    Ormur Prince

    Jan 3, 2007
    You're only killing the unhappy people, besides they deserve it don't they.

    But, yes It's actually quite strange though that you can whip your cites to happiness. I do it all the time when I forget to limit them at the happy cap.
  20. Gliese 581

    Gliese 581 Your average civ junkie

    Oct 11, 2007
    To elaborate on the answers already given, the idea is not to whip when you have 0 production put into a unit since that will give you a 50% reduction penalty, but to focus on growth as much as possible, put a few hammers into the unit then whip for 2 pop on the second turn. Keep utilizing the whip in a way so that you can grow the city back as fast as possible without striking citizens (since they reduce growth by eating and not working).

Share This Page