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General Leader Discussion

Discussion in 'Leader Balance' started by Funak, Jan 11, 2015.

  1. Forsti

    Forsti Warlord

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    If you get only 5 free techs, you're doing it wrong. You get 4 easily from religion (pantheon, founder, enhancer, reformation) and 4 easily from culture (finish 3 policy trees and opening ideology). While England also gets free techs, they can only get techs that others have. Basically that means you'll get techs that have relatively low science cost. If you are at science lead, it's next to impossible to get techs with England. I just finished piety tree with Ethiopia and took free archaeology before researching steel.
     
  2. Legen

    Legen King

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    Brazil's scores for the UA and UI seem way lower than they should be. Can you explain the reasoning behind them?
     
  3. Funak

    Funak Deity

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    I'm personally really not a fan of the Ethiopian UA. It does work, but I think that it 1. makes Ethiopia slightly too frontloaded, with both the Steele and the UA doing work in the first few eras and then just stop doing anything, 2. punishes Ethiopia way too harshly if religion is actually missed (yes this is not that likely, but maybe all other civs in the game are religionheavy as well? Maybe your start was just really bad and you couldn't get a religion going. I mean I've seen this happen to Ethiopia AIs in my games), and 3. promotes delaying use of prophets and building of national wonders, yeah one could argue that this is actually good design, but it feels really weird, kinda like the old saving of scientists until modern era and blow them all at the same time to win.

    Note that I'm not saying that Ethiopia needs to change just because I don't like it, I'm just pointing out that I dislike the UA.
     
  4. Galbias

    Galbias Prince

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    Free techs are never bad, but you don't have a lot of freedom as to when you want to choose them. Seems mostly like a way to get away with slacking on science in the midgame to focus on something else like Culture, which isn't terrible, but it feels fair to say that it's one of the weakest UAs. Stele is an amazing building for sure though, +2 Faith and +1 Culture per city basically from the very beginning is great and means that you're probably going to dominate the religious game. The 8% additional border growth and 33% additional Faith in GAs are nice too but getting your religion going ASAP is huge and can lead to a number of other snowballing benefits. They're still behind Maya though who has both early Faith generation and a good UA so I think their place on infidel's list is fair.
     
  5. CrazyG

    CrazyG Deity

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    Ethiopia is exactly what I think of a as a middle tier civ. You can turn on policy saving to get he most out of the techs, it sucks to be 1 turn short of inventing whatever lets you jump on a high tech
     
  6. Txurce

    Txurce Deity

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    Most of the arguments against Ethiopia are based on subjective preferences of one aspect over another (free techs are a way of slacking off on science") and a downplaying of early snowballing. That's my subjective opinion. But if I were going to rank civs based on AI performance, Ethiopia is well ahead of the Maya. Gazebo, are there any reasonably reliable numbers in your studies?
     
  7. Gazebo

    Gazebo Lord of the Community Patch Supporter

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    Ethiopia > Maya in most games. Maya can do well if they get to expand into jungles/forests early, but that's about it.

    G
     
  8. Zymos

    Zymos Chieftain

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    Would you mind posting another AI top 20 list (based on their performance in your simulated games) again? Really neat info to look at for determining opponents.
     
  9. Gazebo

    Gazebo Lord of the Community Patch Supporter

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  10. Forsti

    Forsti Warlord

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    8 techs is almost as many as an era has. You can obviously use the UA as you describe but it works amazingly when going for science victory too. Having just won a standard speed science victory on turn 284 knowing there was still a lot of room for improvement, I couldn't disagree more with your statement. There are better UAs but only a few.

    Every civ is behind Maya when it comes to early faith generation. It's not really a bad thing to be the second best at it. Besides, while Maya can usually get an enhanced religion faster than Ethiopia, it is also very start dependent. If Maya doesn't have enough forest/jungle, they are in a trouble. Ethiopia on the other hand always gets reliable faith generation with Steles.

    When it comes to UAs, I actually consider Ethiopia's better than Maya's. I mean, obviously getting a free prophet for enhancing and a free engineer for a wonder is great but after that there aren't many great people I'd consider worth more than a free tech. If you're going for a scientific victory (which is presumable for Maya), musician and general are next to useless. Admiral can be somewhat useful as a unit that is able to scout the other continent before reneissance but it surely isn't as useful as a free tech. Artist, merchant and diplomat are useful but surely worse than a tech. Writer can be great but it's usually less useful than a tech and scientist won't generate a tech worth of science at least by "discovering a tech". An academy can be worth as much as or even more than a tech but it's hard to say as it depends on the turn you get it. All in all, I consider Maya's UA slightly weaker than Ethiopia's.

    That's why you plan ahead your tech order.
     
  11. Zymos

    Zymos Chieftain

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    More ranks pls.
     
  12. CrazyG

    CrazyG Deity

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    Keep in mind that recently the late game techs had their costs reduced, so 284 isn't as as fast as it used to be. You can do the math, the UA is not very much science relative to amount you need to win (and nothing compared to what Korea or Bablyon will get). The UAs not bad, but you pick Ethiopia because it provides a very consistent opening with the stele.
     
  13. Txurce

    Txurce Deity

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    I'd say you pick them because they are who they are (UA + UB). The combination makes them one of the most consistent powerhouses. And the reason for that is that religion is the single biggest contributing factor to a competitive (ie, non-domination) victory in Civ.
     
  14. Galbias

    Galbias Prince

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    It might be a bit different in practice, but from all my VP experience and theorycrafting, this is the impression I get. More specifically, the techs are pretty much always going to come in the early-mid game, whereas the important part for science victory is the endgame rush when the techs are much more expensive.

    Maya have Jungle start bias so they should have at least a decent amount. If you barely have any or somehow end up with none, I think it's fair to assume a human player is going to reroll.

    General is still useful because games without a single war are quite rare, if you can predict when a DoW is coming then having one from the start rather than having to earn it is nice, and citadel grabs can occasionally get you a resource that you would otherwise miss. Admiral is +2 luxuries for free which can alternately be sold, Musician is probably the least useful if you're not going Cultural Victory but it's still +2 culture/tourism or some happiness from popping. Considering that it's 8 techs for Ethiopia though, maybe it is a little underrated. I guess I'd need to play them to get more of a feel for it.
     
  15. CrazyG

    CrazyG Deity

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    You are exaggerating religion's importance, you can win without it and lose with it. To me a powerhouse would be a civ with perks that are so strong they are almost broken under ideal circumstances, civs like Korea, India, Rome, or Germany. The catch with all those civs is they don't always reach those ideal circumstances, they lack consistency. Ethiopia isn't a powerhouse, its strength is consistency.
     
  16. Txurce

    Txurce Deity

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    Straw man argument. I didn't say you couldn't win without religion -- I said it's the single biggest contributing factor to non-dom VC. Put simply, everything else in VP is a matter of degree; you can always improve your science, culture, military, economy. With religion and its huge benefits, you either have it or you don't. There is no bigger universal advantage to a winning non-dom strategy.

    We disagree as to how to define a powerhouse.
     
  17. CrazyG

    CrazyG Deity

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    Ok, so help me not straw man. Are you suggesting that religion is a larger factor than great scientists, social policies, or wonders if going for a science win?
     
  18. Txurce

    Txurce Deity

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    I'm saying that the factors you mentioned are relative -- everybody gets some of them. Having a religion can do more for you in gaining a SV than, for example, the extra numbers of GS Babylon gets compared to the average civ that focuses on science. This is because religion's benefits spread all over the game (including the WC, with its advantages) and, even more important, because the civ without a religion gets none of those benefits, for the entire game.

    That's why my first goal in every game is getting a religion, and why I almost never fail, even when playing secular civs. Honestly, I can't see why it wouldn't be Step 1 in every strategy, especially in non-dom games.
     
  19. CrazyG

    CrazyG Deity

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    I have to ask if you are consistently getting religion anyways, why would you choose Ethiopia? It seems like it doesn't fit your playstyle at all, if you always get a decent religion pick Korea and enjoy having a UA that is much stronger and a very powerful mid-late game UB (I also much prefer Hwacha to Sefari).

    If you found every game it seems to me that you don't know what its like to not have a religion. You don't get none of the benefits if you don't found, you still get a pantheon, and someone's follower beliefs will spread to you. There are several civs who's UA are strong enough that having just the UA + 2 random follower beliefs is competitive with founding a religion, and they can potentially have both!
     
  20. Txurce

    Txurce Deity

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    I wouldn't. I tried Ethiopia only now because of the recent conversation about them. I was curious as to whether their religious edge would register much in my SV efforts (you're right, it hasn't seemed to). Likewise, I tried India because of 8bitbob's strategy guide. I occasionally play with Korea and Babylon -- they're all I used in vanilla -- but now prefer to try for SV's with my favorite "average" civs. My goal is to win often enough, using any of the 3 policy branches, that I move up a level.

    I now found almost every game because I saw how much better it was than not founding. But yes, I could not found, and hope to get lucky. I just prefer to eliminate luck in this case, since it's pretty easy to do, and the benefit are so large.
     

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