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Giant Earth Map 3 - Under the Red Sun

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Strategy & Tips' started by civvver, Mar 8, 2012.

  1. civvver

    civvver Deity

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2007
    Messages:
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    For my 3rd public Giant Earth Map game I'm going with Japan.

    In case you haven't seen the other games I posted here and are unfamiliar with this mod, Giant Earth Map (GEM) is a mod that has a huge map representative of earth and is modded to have 34 civs on it. It's also got a few changes to terrain types, units, techs, though not too many to drastically alter your strategies. One thing that is a huge change though is units have a base movement of 2 instead of 1. So all 1 unit movers in regular BTS get 2 moves; all 2 move units get 3 etc. This greatly speeds up warfare which is kinda necessary because the map is so big. Other than that the main differences are there's tons and tons of resources and food so the game will play different (faster growth, expansion) than a regular game.

    I modded the GEM xml just a little with my own changes because there were two big GEM changes I hated. One is in the GEM mod the tech currency and corporation don't provide trade routes. Instead improvements like markets, banks and grocers provide +1 routes. I changed currency back to provide a trade route. It's just such a crucial tech and a core principle of many player's strategy for financing expansion. This does make it possible to have a lot more trade routes than in a normal game, but nothing game breaking, especially when compared to the ridiculous terrain!

    The second change was in GEM cannons require replaceable parts. Why this was done I have no clue, as it takes away the crucial decision of going for rifles or going for cannons. Now cannons come on the same path as rifles and going the lower tech tree path is well, kinda stupid. So I put cannons back to requiring steel. Felt it changed the game too much.

    Oh I also fixed a bug with Hungary's UU. Hungary is the byzantines in this game and their UU was changed to be a 8 str horse archer replacement (pretty op right? but cool. Kehshiks got changed to a 12 str knight replacement, more historically accurate era for them) but whoever put in the xml messed up the unit classes so it didn't work and they basically go no knight unit and regular horse archers. If anyone wants the fix I can post it, but it's not a biggie unless you are playing as hungary.

    I've already played a partial game as Napoleon (ended early with all of Europe captured by 1AD, not worth continuing as a win was inevitable), a space race win with Joao, and a domination win from the center of civilization with David (Gilgamesh) of Israel (Sumeria). Each game played pretty different, all with quite different starts so this time I went to the far east and picked Tokugawa of Japan. Why did I chose him? Well I wanted to showcase the far east, as it has some of the best land on this map and some of the strongest civs will be there. If you read the David game you'd remember that the Yue were dominating until I went over there and spanked them. China is always a powerhouse on GEM. But Japan is unique. Has possibly one of the best capitals on the map, and a couple other awesome city sites but then needs to build galleys to get off their island, which presents a lot of issues. Are you going to peacefully expand into the pacific islands? Or try to conquer Korea/China on the mainland? And you have to be wary of colony maintenance when your capital starts on an island. Also Japan has no economic traits to lean on. If you're going to win with Toku it's going to be through some sweat and thought out plans, no exploiting UUs or philosophy bulbing!

    So without further ado, the settings and start. This is the Modern scenario btw. Modern is the same as Ancient but with additional resources added like some horse in the Americas and corn in Europe. Note I said additional so some cities has obnoxious amounts of food in the Modern scenario.

    Spoiler :







    I turned on resource bubbles and tile yields so you can get a taste for the map. That's not a glitch- the rice tile puts out 5 food unimproved because it has a grassland floodplains on it. Something unique to this map. I believe the author was trying to recreate a realistic density of population with tons and tons of people in India and China and Japan. Less people in certain areas, more in others. But in general all the land is extremely strong. It's fun to play!

    The plan right now is to tech mining and get silver online for research and try for pyramids with that stone. It is doable but I guarantee you Augustus will be going for it. If the player doesn't get it first Auggie ALWAYS gets it. He has stone next to his capital which has a lot of food and production off the bat and he seems to beeline it. Actually if you're playing a European civ it makes things quite easy because you can just capture Rome before he gets any metals hooked up. Kinda cheesy. I also am going to prioritize the great lighthouse for obvious reason. I doubt I'll have a single inland city until the ADs.

    Also want to settle a couple cities on Japan but then quickly try to expand into the Philippines and Indonesia and possibly mainland China depending on how quickly the AI settles it, but they usually do so fast, so I won't have a shot. A war is a possibility. In scenarios the AI doesn't get free archery so if I can get metals before they tech it any war will be a slaughter. I'm not going to pretend to have no knowledge of the map, as I've played it dozens of times. Japan has Iron in Kyoto's BFC but copper is faaaar away so any war will need to be with swords.

    Feel free to post suggestions but I play much faster than I post so I'm probably a round or two ahead. Though I love comments, that's how you learn to get better and try something next time.

    Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoy this game!
     
  2. civvver

    civvver Deity

    Joined:
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    Opening Round

    I settle in place. First build would be a worker but he will have nothing to do until mining is researched so I put some points into a workboat and then switch so the worker is completed the same turn as mining. There's no need for warriors here, Japan is so small it will be fog busted by the time barbs arrive.

    I found a hut containing gold and set to researching masonry for the pyramids but suffered a setback. That could be really bad with Augustus gunning for it. Time will tell.

    Spoiler :










    Next up I get another city running before I go for pyramids. There's no point in wasting turns before stone is online and realistically I'll need to chop to get it. So BW is the obvious next research choice. Also the gold will help me actually tech BW in decent time. In the meantime someone founded buddhism (you get to pick the religions founded in GEM but I stuck to the usual order) and I met wang kon's warrior. I let Osaka grow to size 2 and then set them to producing workers with those awesome flood plain/grassland/rice tiles. Oh and a worthless most advanced thing popped up! Not on the list :(

    Spoiler :










    Next I founded Tokyo while waiting for BW to complete. I debated whether to found in the spot I did or on the mountains on the western pennisula. Those would've had another less tile sharing with Kyoto and the same amount of seafood if you discount the shared clam. But I want to found a city on that island cheju later so I settled here instead.

    Then I set about building the pyramids. I reprioritized the worked tiles to get it down to 24 turns. Not bad at all for non-industrious. Plus I'll be chopping soon. I met Goujan of the Yue in the meantime.

    Spoiler :










    A few chops later....

    Spoiler :




    Whoohoo! Got the mids! Might as well retire now cus the game is over! Er, well not quite, but you will soon see how ridiculous this wonder is on a map with this much food. And the specialists are changed to be even more powerful in this game to begin with. Scientists give 4 beakers and 1 hammer by default.

    Next I teched sailing for GLH and Iron Working for some units. I'm totally neglecting economic development techs like agriculture, hunting and AH but it doesn't matter because the flood rices are plenty of food for now. These are things you should take note of if you try this mod. You will hit happy caps with ease and run into health problems fast so sometimes developing food is not quite as important as a normal game. I built my third city in Japan. Planning one more in the north by some furs. Someone else built the oracle in 1925BC. Pretty standard timing as a lot of civs (Spain, Rome, Israel) have marble in their BFC or 2nd city.

    Spoiler :






    Now here's where I do a little pre-library specialists to speed up Iron Working. This is why the mids rock so hard on this map. With this much extra food you can run 2-4 citizens in cities for 1 hammer and 3 beakers. I didn't run the full 4 because I had silver mines to work but any city can become a tech hub with food here, you don't need commerce tiles or cottages if you have the pyramids. You can tank your economy, go zero research and still get techs in decent time.

    Spoiler :





    I now set about building a fleet to carry settlers to far off lands. I can't go directly south to the Philippines because there's an ocean tile blocking. So I head for Indonesia instead, grabbing some huts along the way. The island hut is safe to grab with a settler since barbs would spawn in the water (basically wouldn't spawn) but I take a risk and grab the second island hut. Both have gold and I settle Kagoshima.


    Spoiler :








    A few short turns later I have completed:

    Spoiler :




    And that's a pretty good opening round! Expansion is going well and I got the two best wonders for my start/this map. Coming up next- watch the settlement of more islands and will we invade the mainland or live in peace? :mischief:
     
  3. civvver

    civvver Deity

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    Round 2

    In this round I continued the expansion into southeast Asia and didn't play so nice with others, as you'll soon see. First I tried to squeeze a city onto the mainland south of Goujian but he was pumping out settlers fast. Generally on this map I dislike placing cities so closely as with all the resources cities can grow to gigantic sizes and work tons of specialists, but at the same time all the resources allow closer cities to still prosper. Even Nara crammed between 2 Yue cities will have multiple food resources and hills for production. Oh also if you haven't noticed by now coast tiles are 1 food, 1 hammer and 1 commerce by default so island and coastal cities actually can have good production.

    I ran into India who is the founder of Buddhism as well.

    Spoiler :








    Further expansion into the mainland of Asia is impossible at this point because the AI has it all settled out already. I do a little scouting and discover that Korea hasn't even researched archery yet and is defending with warriors. I landed a few troops for an invasion. I won't need a very large stack going up against puny warriors. You can see even attacking right off the boat I am at 90% odds! Korea falls with ease.

    Spoiler :










    Kaesong is a very nice capital, not quite as production strong as Kyoto but plenty of commerce once some cottages grow. It's balanced. I need to scout out a location for a future palace and Kaesong is a strong leader.

    Next I do a couple trades to backfill tech and try to get some diplo points for we appreciate you supplying us... blah blah. Mao is not the friendliest of dudes and won't even open borders with me. That's kind of a problem because to transfer troops between my cities by the Yue and Korea I have to use boats which is slower.

    Also note that Sury doesn't have sailing yet. I could've packaged iron working and sailing together and gotten alphabet but I want to deny him sailing as long as possible or he will quickly rex into Malaysia and Indonesia and will beat me to those sites as my boats have to travel much further. Plus I don't really need alphabet. It's a good tech to build research to get to those crucial currency/code of laws techs if you don't have the pyramids for citizen research, but I don't have that problem. So alphabet can wait; the islands cannot!

    Spoiler :








    My first great person is an engineer and it seems like a no brainer to tech metal casting, though he won't completely finish it. This map size makes the techs cost more than a huge map, I'm not exactly sure how much, but it balances out with all the good land. Your tech rate will be good, but it won't beat normal maps of the same speed, which is good. Game seems to play at the right speed. Also, since I'm talking about map changes, I should note that corporation benefits are severely diminished and it's clear to see why. I've already got about 25 sushi resources and 8 mining ones by 1AD which would be insane amounts of food. I think one time playing as USA with all of north america settled I had over 40 wheat/corn/rice which would be 30 food from cereal mills lol. So the corps are changed, sushi provides 0.15 food per resource instead of 0.5, cereal mills is 0.22 instead of 0.75 and mining is 0.3 instead of 1, so everything is reduced by roughly a third. Although aluminum company isn't as much, but who ever builds that :crazyeye:

    Anyway, I'll need to self tech the rest of metal casting but colossus will be a huge advantage on this map and metal casting is major trade bait and forges will solve my happiness problems since I already have gold and silver. Shaka has the majority of the gems on this map and it's kind of a toss up whether he will trade them or not, just depends on whether he has any left or has given them all away.

    Spoiler :




    I meet some more civs and make this awesome trade for ivory. Also find david, the founder of Judaism. I'm hoping to convert to Judaism since Sury and Mao are also Jewish. Stay on their good sides! The rest of the world is pretty evenly split between Confucianism, Hinduism and Buddhism. Should make the game quite interesting. It's much worse when everyone is buddy buddy as they share far too many techs.

    Sidenote: I like the historical accuracy of David founding Judaism :lol: Thought that was funny. You can't see it in this current screenshots, but it happens in the future. Sorry, I'm getting ahead of my posts!

    Spoiler :






    Next I gear up for a Yue invasion. Thoughts about the war: I know he doesn't have access to copper. The only copper in Asia is more inland by China. Good thing to know if you ever want to roll an Asian civ in GEM. China can easily axe rush all of Asia and it's really quite cheesy. Anyway, the yue will at best have archers to defend against my veteran swords, and he *probably* doesn't have walls, since he's not super defensive and he doesn't have protective promos for his archers. Look I'm not going to invade China without catapults since he has bronze and protective archers and it's a unit spammer, so that only leaves Goujian or Sury and Sury is too far.

    Spoiler :






    Dalilang fell easily. I didn't get a screenshot of the defenses but it had a couple archers and around 5 warriors, which I crush at over 90% odds. Dalilang is going to be my premier GP farm and probably my oxford city too, always running a plethora of scientists. It has 12 food resources and nearly all of them with flood plain bonuses too. Goujian always settles this spot and I've seen his city grow to size 40 without corporations. It's insane. I move on to Goujian's capital. It is also lightly defended, but it is on a hill which sucks. I make sure to not cross the river attacking and I lose a couple swords, but still no problems.

    Spoiler :








    I finally make the alphabet trade, backfilling Hammurabi. A quick look at the tech screen shows me miles ahead of everyone. They don't even have math which is great since I'm gunning for the mausoleum.

    Spoiler :






    A few more turns, a few more Yue cities captured. I considered razing Nanjing since it was so close to Nara and I hate that, but again, plenty of resources to grow both cities so I can't justify the loss. Goujian has one final stronghold, a hilled city with multiple archers. But again, aggressive swords vs a non walled city you need like 2:1 against non protective archers. Not really a challenge.

    Spoiler :










    Here's where I call it a round. In all a very successful game. I actually think we can safely call it a win, barring any huge catastrophe. I have so much great land, plus pyramids and GLH. I honestly didn't think on Emperor things would be this easy. Yes I won the David game with domination on Emperor but I never led like this and there were a couple moments when I doubted winning through war before someone got into space. Might have to move up to immortal with the advantages of this mod or play a weaker civ. Regardless, I'm going to complete this game because I'm having a lot of fun with it.

    A look at the demographics reveals us to be far behind the lead in GNP (still above average though) but that's because colony maintenance is out of control at 59 gpt! Kaesong is about halfway done with the capital and I'll whip it asap. My food and production are solid number 1s. Once the palace moves and I can funnel that commerce through libraries I'll be first in GNP as well. Also at this time a report on largest civs comes out. Largest refers to land size, so cultural borders. No surprise the inland civs lead it. I don't put a ton of stock in this statistic as Shaka will often have an empire sprawling the African plains that is really quite food poor, so he'll have the most land but be behind in crop yield by a lot.

    Spoiler :









    Some closing thoughts and plan for next round: I want to try to finish up Indonesia and maybe get onto the Philippines before Sury. My war days are at an end for now, at least until construction. I have Ivory so jumbos are an option, but I don't have to invade anyone as I already lead in cities. I believe I'm safe with Sury as he will hate Ghandi more than me for a while, but any attacks by him are easy to handle anyway because he will attack the one city on his border first. So I can stockpile troops there no issues. China on the other hand will be much more difficult. I share borders with multiple cities so I need to reinforce all of them. He's fairly aggressive and I have a lot of negative points with him from dow'ing his friend and close borders. I can't get him to happy, he doesn't care enough about religion. I see war with china as inevitable, I just want to delay it as long as possible until I can get a bigger tech advantage, maybe fight him with samurai and trebs, or even wait for rifles. Time will tell.

    Until next time!
     
  4. cbucks

    cbucks Warlord

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    Why not place Tokyo 1e?
     
  5. civvver

    civvver Deity

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    Tokyo 1e would lose both of those hills in the bfc and a grassland for a workshop later and overlap even more with Kyoto. I can't think of any reason to do so.
     
  6. admtanaka

    admtanaka Warlord

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    How do difficulty levels scale in GEM? It looks like you have already reached a dominating position. Emperor AIs can't seem to keep up in tech even early on.
     
  7. civvver

    civvver Deity

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    It really depends on what civ you play and what speed. Any civ that starts with good land and copper or horses can rush at least two other civs before they get archers, since in a scenario the AI doesn't get archery automatically. For example, play as spain or france and you can have Europe under your grasp by 100BC if you do it right. This obviously makes things very easy.

    I honestly did not expect things to go so well with Japan. Transferring troops by sea slows down war a lot and I expected Korea and the Yue to have better defenses by the time I had troops across. Maybe I'm getting better at GEM, because the last time I played Japan offline on only Monarch difficulty I wasn't able to invade Korea until I got maces/samurai and trebs. I won the game but wasn't nearly as dominant and on a lesser difficulty.

    Contrast all this to the David game. Israel has strong production but it's not obscene like europe or japan's. I took out Hammurabi and Hatshepsut early, but even with their cities I was pretty boxed in between Hungary, Turkey, Persia and the African civs. Took a little more gutting out that win.

    I played the Brazil game on Monarch difficulty and barely managed to win a space race. In the end I had to all out nuke Ghandi to prevent a cultural victory. It was pretty tight.

    So to answer your question, all civs are not created equal at all! You can play one or two levels above your regular difficulty with any of the strong civs, but a weaker start like Shaka, America or Brazil things will be pretty standard. And if you play one of the awful starting locations like Maya, Mongolia or Australia prepare to drop a level or two from usual. When I get around to playing another online game I'm going to pick a weaker civ for sure, possibly showcase another victory type like culture.
     
  8. civvver

    civvver Deity

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    Another post coming soon! I've played much further into this game, just haven't had time to get the screenshots up. No huge surprised, but a lot of war as I try to conquer all of Asia. Mini spoiler- a long war with china ends up with Mao capitulating to someone... not necessarily me :eek:
     
  9. civvver

    civvver Deity

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    Round 3

    This round I expand my island cities and go to war over the mainland. What's the saying about never fight a land war in Asia? Well I haven't got any planes so land troops will have to do!

    First I whipped out the palace in Kaesong. I'm not 100% sure Kaesong is the best capital site because I'm going to run bureaucracy. But the other options are huji, which I'm turning into a production HE powerhouse, and Dalilang, which is my science city + GP farm. The reason it's the science city is its insane amount of food, it will be running a dozen scientists in caste system. So it will always beat out a commerce city, yet it's not a good bueru capital because it doesn't have high commerce. So Kaesong kinda wins by default. Getting my capital on the mainland has an immediate effect on the treasury.

    Spoiler :






    I continue my island expansion but even Persia is pushing for that land now. You can see Sury has beaten my to parts of Malaysia and the Philippines. Malaysia I don't mind, it's not the best land, but the Philippines hurts, awesome land there missed out on.

    Spoiler :












    I finally find a willing trade partner for marble and use it to get the mausoleum. Later I snag the parthenon too. This is going to be a huge boon for Dalilang's scientist production.

    Spoiler :







    You can see now with the relocated palace I'm securely in first in all the relevant categories. Also the tech situation is going nicely, only spain really has anything decent and I'll get CoL myself in a couple turns.

    Spoiler :






    Mao inexplicably declares war on me. I saw this coming when he went war mode, but still his move is strange because he didn't move any troops against me. You can see he's very powerful but has no real stack. Instead he has 5 or so units in each city. A couple turns ago Sury dow'd Ghandi, which I also saw coming. I figured I was safe from Sury because Ghandi is the heathen. Sury, Mao and me are all Jewish. Of course Mao doesn't care about religion hence his dow. I take some of his cities in retaliation of his insolence. Sury also begged me to fight Ghandi with him so I did, there's no threat from Ghandi and I was able to make peace a few turns later. I can easily take Mao's non hill cities with my veteran swords but I will need some siege or better units for the more fortified positions.

    Spoiler :










    A power graph is released. Again Mao is very strong but his troops have no focus. He does manage to retake Boading.

    Spoiler :




    At this same time I'm popping out scientists like mad and bulbed part of phillosophy. Once I get to pacifism I'll start a huge chain of golden ages to spur my research towards lib.

    Next it's on to Mao's inner cities. You can see catapults kinda suck, but I'm on the path towards engineering. Then I'll work on civil service to upgrade my swords to samurai and I'll be fine. But my current troops are spread thin so it's time for a cease fire. I don't go peace because Mao has nothing to offer in tribute and I may redeclare within 10 turns.

    Spoiler :










    I put all my espionage against Mao and discover that he is researching engineering. Kinda stupid since his best bet against me is protective longbows, but whatever. Maybe he is afraid of my elephants. I should note longbows are nerfed in GEM down to 5 base str. So medieval war is actually not hard at all. Also GEM uses a bombard mod so trebs and other more advanced artillery can perform ranged attacks. It's basically like attacking the city as normal but with a high miss chance but with no chance to suffer any damage. Pretty sweet, kinda too easy. Once you get a fleet of destroyers you can range attack all the coastal cities for easy invasions.

    Spoiler :




    I tech fuedalism and immediately get a lot of peace vassal requests, one from Rome, one from Persia and another one from Saladin. I accept Persia's, no real reason not to, but Rome and Saladin were at war so I rejected.

    Next my army is built up enough to really wipe China off the map. You can see Mao is hiding out with his huge stack of catapults.

    Spoiler :




     
  10. civvver

    civvver Deity

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    Even without siege support my highly promoted Samurai are at 80% odds. War is too easy. Mao throws about his entire army left at Kaefeng and I repel them all.

    Spoiler :








    I'm not going to bore you with all of the details of war. Needless to say it goes very well and I move through the Chinese countryside like wildfire. At the same time I tech within one turn of liberalism completion and start teching the prereqs for steam power. My plan is to take steam power with lib. Big reason is on GEM steam power is the factory requirement and steam power costs a ton of beakers. I may or may not get all the prereqs in time so constitution is my backup lib choice.

    That's all I have time to post right now! I guess it was only about half a round. More coming later.
     
  11. Kadazzle

    Kadazzle Emperor

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    Why wouldn't you settle on the Stone? It looks like the best play here.
     
  12. Mouthwash

    Mouthwash Escaped Lunatic

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    I love this map. Played a game as Joao II, moved my start to Portugal in WB, settled north Africa, conquered Zulu and Egypt, and started colonizing Australia and Brazil. It was only on Noble though.
     
  13. civvver

    civvver Deity

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    Settling on the stone you lose a fish and riverside start. Not worth it in the long run imo.
     

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