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GEM strat for Conquest

Discussion in 'Strategy Forum' started by Lowpro, Jan 9, 2013.

  1. Lowpro

    Lowpro Chieftain

    Jun 29, 2012
    Alright rather than beat around the bush or assault Thal with questions I'll just ask here and see if I can get a bit of handholding when it comes to doing a good Conquest game using GEM/CivUP.

    I tried two with Japan (even in Vanilla I've never used Japan or Genghis Khan and iirc GK may be better for city-state assaults but I Japan is the itch that needs scratching) and pretty early ran into money problems. GEM gives you a fair bit of starter coin which rolls in a lot because you kill barbs but as I try to build out I also try to build up to get pop to work mines/mills so I can build some units up. I try to get Hanging Gardens to do this but it didn't work for either game. Usually for sheep/deer they'd be my only "food" tiles and the rest if I build any others will be production or trading posts and within my city itself I'd try to just keep granary, stables and production-ish buildings).

    But money got tight and eventually I was about -16 gpt after killing all but one worker. My thinking is that I built up too much to support my armies and maybe I just didn't conquer with a good tempo.

    I'd ask for feedback in the form more of "here's what you SHOULD do" rather than "what you did was dumb" but criticism is criticism.
  2. mitsho

    mitsho Deity

    Nov 3, 2003
    Europe, more or less
    I always run into the same problem. Unit upkeep cost is high. Generally, to generate :c5gold: you can:

    • hunt barbarians
    • extort :c5gold: from city states
    • sell any ressource you have
    • don't chose costly policies right at the start, like the free workers
    • chose Social Policies that give gold
    • beeline markets and mints
    • sell any ressource you have (yes, that's that important! Also: explore to meet civs)
    • employ specialist merchants
    • beeline villages/plantations
    • conquer a city
    • lose excessive units by gifting them to city states

    Early "rushes" seem to be a gambit right now, either you conquer that city, or ... But keep in mind that this subject is under heavy construction right now, see the thread named gold in the main forum...
  3. Lowpro

    Lowpro Chieftain

    Jun 29, 2012
    Thanks for the reply (I read some of the thread but now I feel a bit like "abandon all hope!" with it but all in good time)

    I'm going to try Mongols next time or even Atilla because barbarian hunting may actually be a great way to go. Another problem I had is that I didn't even try extorting CS and come to think of it haven't bothered to do much with them (I was concerned more with killing off Boudicca early) but if I just shake off the fact that there is no diplomacy in a Conquest game I can conquer my aversion to sacking City States (
  4. mystikx21

    mystikx21 Deity

    Feb 18, 2006
    Some thoughts I've had.
    1) Wait until the classical age and getting up catapults to start attacking a lot (unless you're Attila or maybe Monty/Kama). Taking out a couple stray AI cities and fighting defensively is fairly easy, but taking on a conquest goal is much harder without catapults and hooking up iron for swords.
    2) Take the oligarchy policy for free unit upkeep and stash some units/garrisons until the war starts. Also professional army.
    3) Focus a couple of cities on military/wonders production and the rest on gold/science early on. Don't go all out on total war as you'll fall behind and crash your economy.
    4) Use gold to buy buildings first rather than units to keep unit production flowing while building up your economy. Buildings are cheaper per gold and cost less to maintain.
    5) Use at least couple vanguards to recon and heal and to shield your siege weapons. Force mixtures for combined arms are more useful.
    6) Avoid pillaging too much as you don't want to have to delegate workers (eg, to have more workers than needed). Avoid building too many roads as well.
    7) Use a navy where possible. Navies are cheaper to maintain than armies and quite powerful, and melee ships can steal gold.
  5. Lowpro

    Lowpro Chieftain

    Jun 29, 2012
    In reply to your advice:

    1) Catapults are a must for sure, and more than one considering just taking out a city with walls and comp bowman is actually kind of a pain and if they're on a coast then God help you. My first city tends to be focused on my start; my next two are usually resource hookup (or if luck permits a nice city with hills on a river...rarely do I get that though -.-)

    2) I love Oligarchy. There's also another (I forget) which gives 2 defensive units. I try not to pop that one early as it can give some better free units.

    3) The problem is getting wonders/villages (they're the main gold/science maker with farms behind by virtue of population-to-beakers) AND having the army. As you build "up" within a city those buildings cost cash; cash that I need for my army.

    4) The next game I try tonight will definitely be more focused on city-state bullying and barbarian hunting to try to rake in more gold but I have a serious aversion to buying buildings unless it's just absolutely worth doing (things like stables to me are worth purchasing especially if the town is low on hammers but has pastures)

    5) I'm having a love/hate relationship with Vanguard units. I don't like having a unit that's all defensive AND can only get the medic treatment. I pretty much treat them as I treat me medic scouts; not meant to attack at all just stand at a square and give some HP/turn.

    6) There's no major incentive to pillage. It gives menial gold but DOES strangle the city's production. I'd like it if there was a way to see how a city's reacting to pillaging per turn. Generally I just go in for the full siege but it'd be nice to see how hit-and-run Horsemen pillaging may be to soften up a city. Honestly I'd LOVE that in the mod (pillaging a city may make its health regenerate slower or lower the effectiveness of garrisoned units*)... As for roads how many is too many =P I'm not making cloverleafs everywhere but roads assist a lot in moving an army formation quickly.

    7) Oh do I love my navies. I really like the Harbor and Lighthouse combo for coastal cities such that the land you have can be easily focused away from food without feeling like you're playing a tough balancing act.

    Oligarchy only serves to probably pay for 3 units at least till Renaissance (sprawling out more than 3-4 cities spells doom to me; threatening City States doesn't earn you smilies and unless you're sitting on 3 of a type of resource to trade off and you haven't found many natural wonders then you're better off slowing growth on cities which sucks for science, gold, production... )

    I feel like it's hard to plan out a Conquest game sometimes. It doesn't seem easy to go into the start of a game with; rather it's easier to go for growing first and play defensive and beat the AI to a wonder or two and THEN go Conquest.

    *Would that be too difficult or imbalanced to actually do? After all smaller cities even for AI's probably that won't have many tile improvements ALSO probably won't have walls and other city defense bonuses so such a mod wouldn't really make them easier to take down whereas beefier cities probably have many improvements so by pillaging them you're softening them up to eventually siege...would make sieging easier and maybe more fun than just moving a formation in and playing a game of attrition.

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