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For those of you saying Diplomatic Victory is easy...

Discussion in 'Civ5 - General Discussions' started by OmniPotent42, Jul 16, 2013.

  1. OmniPotent42

    OmniPotent42 King

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    I played as Venice, Continents, Immortal difficulty, standard speed. No other custom map settings were enabled/disabled.

    I pretty much knew the only shot I had was a diplo victory, mainly because of the two runaways on the map, William and Cathy. In fact, Cathy had finished 5 of 6 spaceship parts before I got the win!

    Now I admit, I was swimming in gold. I had all of exploration and commerce filled out, plus the double trade routes of Venice and MoV's to put me WAY ahead of the AI in gpt. I had a solid bank of 20K gold (and counting) by the late game.

    However, gold only takes you so far in a diplomatic victory. Yes you can buy up all the CS's, and bribe the AI to a certain extent, but to say that a Diplomatic victory is a money victory is an oversimplification.

    The victory condition is plagued with obstacles. For example, I needed 27 delegates to win the World Leader vote, but only had 24 delegates, even with all CS's allied. I had to find a way to get those extra delegates, and FAST, before Cathy finished her spaceship. I had to use my position as world leader to make Freedom the World Ideology, and I beelined Globalization to get the extra delegates from diplomats.

    However, nothing could prepare me for Cathy's information-era army, compared to my barely modern divisions (I had to keep my military on my western coast to protect my capital, couldn't afford to send big armies over seas). She took out my puppeted city on her continent, and at one point she had 3 atomic bombs on my borders. Not even close to having bomb shelters at the time, it was pretty nerve racking.

    To make matters worse, I had no consistent allies throughout the entire game. I declared war on a friend in the early game, and then the whole world hated my guts. At one point, almost everyone was allied with Cathy, the tech giant almost a whole era ahead of me.

    However, in the late game I had one ally to take the brute force of Cathy's military might - the Netherlands. We were at war in the past, he coveted my lands, I honestly thought he would be my biggest enemy in the late game. I believe the only reason we were allied was because we shared the Freedom ideology, even though the rest of the world chose Order. I got him to declare war on Cathy, and the fine soul even took 4 atomic bombs to the face.

    Spoiler :

    Spoiler :


    You also have to be VERY careful with wars if you chose the diplomatic route. Wars mean less trade routes, which means less gold to spend on buying CS allies, which are crucial both for the vote and buying time. I also didn't go the traditional rationalism route, but I feel like I made the right choice when it comes to policies.

    So to those who say that Diplo is the 'default victory', play on higher difficulties and you'll see that's not the case.
     
  2. Yzman

    Yzman Deity

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    How were the CS votes not enough? When I won a diplomatic as Venice in my first BNW game, I won with 32 votes I believe. I think I also had the Forbidden Palace and maybe World Ideology giving me some votes but CS are worth 2 delegates each in that era. I don't remember how many CS are on an average map, but large has 20, so standard may be 15 at minimum. 15 X 2 =30 plus the votes you get yourself for being leader and then any additional votes. You shouldn't need to do much diplo with the other civs.
     
  3. Thereon

    Thereon Chieftain

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    I've always had enough as well when I own the citystates, how many did you absorb into your empire?
     
  4. OmniPotent42

    OmniPotent42 King

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    Well the AI took out like 3 or 4 CS's, and add that to the ones that I "commandeered" and I think it set me back enough to not have enough votes. If I had the forbidden palace I think that would have put me over the edge, as there was one CS I could have taken from Cathy before I commandeered that one, too.
     
  5. OmniPotent42

    OmniPotent42 King

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    only...4 :mischief:
     
  6. Thereon

    Thereon Chieftain

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    ah I see, too many were absorbed for the victory :( Usually I just absorb 1 when I am going to a diplomatic victory as not to destroy all the votes.
     
  7. Glieze

    Glieze Chieftain

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    Just won a diplo victory on deity at first world leader vote (turn 291), standard size and settings, continents. But to be fair, the AI could EASILY have prevented it by using some of their incredible wealth...

    Spoiler :


    I bulbed my way to extra votes from diplomats 2 turns before the vote as well as having some 12 out of the remaining 14 city states as allies I think. I had also forced my own religion as world religion by bribing 2 AIs earlier. This put me at just above the required amount.

    Remember though, if you fail a diplo vote, the 2 highest will get extra votes for the next congress, meaning you will eventually win the diplo victory (unless someone else has won by that time, of course :p)
     
  8. pilot00

    pilot00 King

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    As Alexander I had all CS, and didn't even spend gold and policies on them (at least till the late game). They do try to buy them back when the World leader elections are comming but even then they wont have a significant amount of money (or you should have more since you are planning for it).

    If you want to go into a diplo victory you have to aim to spread your religion to the CS and have them on your side by the time their votes count, once you do this its over the council is yours.
    The AI is voting itself on important elections so I cant really see it as difficult to circumvent.

    If anything I found easier than prepatch G&Ks diplo victory (no spies and annoying stuff like that).
     
  9. VainoValkea

    VainoValkea Emperor

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    Diplo is easy, when playing culturally.

    Extra culture --> extra influence, because the City States constantly play that culture quest.

    Extra culture --> not only patronage, but insane CS-helping tenets like Arsenal of Democracy and Treaty Organization.
     
  10. Biologist

    Biologist Emperor

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    I just finished a diplo victory as Venice in which I puppetted four city states and was able to win. I had delegates from other sources though, including the Forbidden Palace, world religion and world ideology (Freedom). I also liberated the Netherlands (also Freedom) and spread the world religion to their only city, which gave me extra votes. In the end I didn't actually need them, though.

    Granted, this was on Prince difficulty, to learn the mechanics. I'm sure it will be more difficult to snowball delegates on emperor/immortal difficulty.
     
  11. Cymsdale

    Cymsdale Prince

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    Why the hell is the AI not using that gold?
     
  12. sffrrrom

    sffrrrom Chieftain

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    It's not that you can't have a fun diplomatic victory - your game sounds like it was a fun example. But diplomatic victories generally do not work well at the moment, because:

    1. AI voting habits are really bad (not too too bad with most proposals, but terrible with host elections and world leader).
    2. It scales extremely poorly to map size, i.e. it's much more difficult on smaller maps than larger ones. This is because votes are attributed to civilizations, not by population, which is a terrible mistake. On a large or huge game you can easily have one civ completely dominate its continent, wipe out all city states on it, but still lose to a diplo victory because there are sufficient city-states on a different continent to win.
    3. Since city-state influence is completely dependent on gold (at least late-game) this means that the only necessary resource to win is gold. Have enough of it, and you can usually buy your way to victory, even if you're dead last in every other statistic.
    4. The AI has few ways to block a diplo victory, and doesn't even use them effectively most of the time.

    It has potential, but it needs a lot of tweaking.
     
  13. VainoValkea

    VainoValkea Emperor

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    Arsenal of Democracy allows you to "buy" CS influence very cheaply with units. The only drawback is the 3 turn lag before you can gift again, but it's a very potent source of late game CS influence.
     
  14. Cymsdale

    Cymsdale Prince

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    I think #4 is the crux, but it's only half true. There *are* effective methods to block a diplo victory. You can use espionage to stage coups, you can use gold to influence city states yourself (which they don't seem to do judging by all that gold hoarding...), and if push comes to shove you can declare war and take over the city state.

    Part of the diplomatic victory is really about protecting other nations from destruction. This is more clear in a game with Austria, Venice or Mongolians. Of course, if all the remaining civs are reluctant to mess with the city states, then Diplomatic victory becomes smooth.
     
  15. Biologist

    Biologist Emperor

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    An Autocracy civ could use Gunboat Diplomacy to gain city state influence, and a Freedom civ can use Treaty Organization to gain influence by establishing trade routes with city states.
     
  16. sffrrrom

    sffrrrom Chieftain

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    I have yet to experiment with this, so that's neat. But the real point isn't that there are alternate ways, it's that gold is at least as effective and therefore, you can win a Diplomatic victory (most of the time) using only gold.

    Most of the problem is the AI is just really bad at doing any of those, and isn't focused enough even when it attempts to do so. But I still think there's a big problem with how as soon as you hit the correct era, a Diplomatic victory is only (on Epic, which is all my games) 15 turns away if you have the right influence. That's not a lot of turns to stop, and obviously you should be planning farther in advance than that, but the AI isn't great at planning in advance.

    Gunboat Diplomacy is absolutely worthless as far as I can tell. I tried it my last game. I was autocracy, world's strongest military by FAR, and of the remaining maybe 14 city-states, the only two I could threaten were the ones near enough to me I could have just stomped them anyway. It's WAY too hard to threaten the city-states you would need to - by the time you can, you could just conquer the world.

    Treaty Organization can be very rewarding, but it's more of a "win more," since it's linked in to trade routes, which produce gold, which = win.
     
  17. VainoValkea

    VainoValkea Emperor

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    Gunboat Diplomacy sounds very poor to me. I haven't tried it yet, but by its description I'd believe it's very difficult to set up a force near every CS and the high maintenance costs would make it less worthwhile. For comparison, TO rewards one from doing what they'd be doing anyway - trading with City-States.
     
  18. Cymsdale

    Cymsdale Prince

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    A lot of city states are coastal so you can make use of naval units for this.

    There are also a lot of inherent advantages to simply possessing a strong military (big stick and all).
     
  19. budweiser

    budweiser King of the Beers

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    I used gunboat diplomacy just to try it when I went Autocracy. It was emperor. I needed about 7 battleships before they caved. They were already my ally so it was moot.

    I'm going to try a diplo on immortal soon. I hope it goes smooth.
     
  20. GoodSarmatian

    GoodSarmatian Jokerfied Western Male

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    Well, you can keep your maintenance down with Nationalism and you can move your armies around once your influence is above ally level and only periodically come back to remind the CS what a great guy you are. You can also take advantage of the fact that many CS are close to each other and you can intimidate several of them at once by placing armies between them.

    Treaty Organization was pretty awesome when I tried it with Venice, but trade routes to city states are among the least profitable routes in the game and sometimes yield over 20 gpt less than you would get for sending your cargo ships to another civ. There's definitely a trade-off.
     

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