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[BTS] Going for 1st prince win

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Strategy & Tips' started by Hot_Dawg, Jun 25, 2020.

  1. Hot_Dawg

    Hot_Dawg Chieftain

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    Hey everyone, I've been playing Civ4 on and off for awhile now. Recently I've decided to actually get good at this game, and graduate to beating deity or at least immortal.

    Anyway, I'll try to keep this as short as I can. I have a game here currently at turn 200, as Holy Romans, going for domination win. I felt like things were going fairly well up until I defeated Spain, but now I feel like I'm in an unwinnable situation. Basically I'm wondering if someone could help me out and analyze my game? I feel like I made a handful of mistakes, including:

    1) Going to maceman without realizing I needed metal casting and mach first, so I was stuck with axe/swordman

    2) Going after Isabella with the plan to go after Zara, instead of going after Washington and Justinian. Then declaring on the Aztecs when I saw a stack on my border, without watching to see if it was actually intended for me.

    3) Not setting up any diplomacy at all

    Those are the ones that stick out to me, but I'm sure there are plenty more. What annoys me is that I didn't convert to any religion, as to not provoke any neighbors into attacking me. When I finally decide to convert to Hinduism, I get attacked by Pacal. Now I don't really know how to play this. I feel like I'm basically surrounded by unfriendly nations that will attack me at any point, no matter what I do. I'm basically wondering a few things. What went wrong, is this game salvageable, and what to do in the future to avoid a situation like this? I know there are guides, and I like learning from trial and error, but any general advice would be great. Also, I do try to save around every 20 turns, so if you want to see any earlier saves let me know.
     

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  2. Zavior

    Zavior Trying to (b)eat deity

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    Hi and welcome to the forums!

    Sadly at turn 200 it is pretty much 200 turns late to give you good advice.

    The best way to learn would be to start a new game with standard settings(no huts, no events, pangaea, standard size), post the turn 0 save and wait for people to discuss on how to proceed. You can see many such games here on the forum, a great example being this game of OldDude: https://forums.civfanatics.com/threads/shadow-game-first-time-at-monarch.648011/
    Just reading through that thread contains a lot of great information and discussion!
     
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  3. reflec

    reflec Chieftain

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    Yeah playing with like 15 civs and ignoring diplomacy is really a recipe for disaster. You will need to chose a side, you will not keep everyone happy.

    As Zavior said it's too late to give any meaningful advise, make a shadow game and go from there
     
  4. lymond

    lymond Rise Up! (Phoenix Style!) Hall of Fame Staff

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    I'll be blunt and say this only in the spirit of learning :), but your game is a right hot mess. First off, playing on a Huge map is crazyballs, exacerbated by the fact that you appear to have zero ideas on diplomacy. Basically, you are playing with no purpose and building a bunch of useless things in your cities like Markets.

    Please play normal setting as Zavior described above.

    I recommend that you start from ground zero with your learning effort. IV is a complex game. Very important that you grasp some basic mechanics from the early game. The early game is highly important - first 50 to 100 turns - and every turn and decision matters. Once the good folks here help you set this foundation you can start building on that foundation with more advanced concepts and strategies. The learning process for this game is actually quite rewarding.

    You need to start from Turn 0 for advice and Zavior has laid this out for you.
     
  5. Hot_Dawg

    Hot_Dawg Chieftain

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    Thanks guys, funny enough I originally signed up to the forum with the intention of doing a shallow game. But I figured I'd try a few games beforehand and see if I could beat it myself first. Thanks for the link Zavior, I'll read it on my downtime for sure. As for the game, it wasn't so much I didn't care enough to set up any diplomacy. At first my power score was so much higher than everyone else, I wasn't at all worried about being attacked by anyone. But after awhile I didn't know who to ally with, especially once I realized I was sandwiched between 2 religions and multiple unhappy AI. It's something I'm hoping to avoid in the future.

    Anyway, I'm not sure if I should maybe edit the OP or not, but I am ready to start a shadow game. I have events and huts turned off, standard map, not sure if huge sea level is considered standard though? If not I'll start another game. I did random and got Japan. Given my starting spot, I was thinking of setting right there and going for BW? Then exploring with my warrior. I usually go worker, warrior, settler, stone hedge, depending if I have enough forest. Sometimes I do stone hedge before settler. What do you guys think I should do here?

    As a side note, just to make sure I get this right. Is it every 20 turns you guys guide me on, or is it less? I'm not gonna do anything here until you guys help out first. I'm not really sure how this works so I want to get it right.
     

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  6. dankok8

    dankok8 Elected World Leader

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    @Hot_Dawg

    Welcome to the forums! :goodjob:

    Post some screenshots of the start (I use Imgur to upload screenshots) and people will tell you where to settle and what to research first. Start from there.

    Japan is probably a good civ to learn the game because his traits are fairly weak especially economically. You can probably pursue early aggression followed by a quick economy fix which is important to learn. But by far the most important thing is getting the very very early game correct as in the first 30-40 turns and people on here can definitely help with all of it. I'm now at a point where I beat Immortal regularly but I'm still learning this beautiful game.
     
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  7. lymond

    lymond Rise Up! (Phoenix Style!) Hall of Fame Staff

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    Can't open the save at the moment as playing SGOTM. High sea level will decrease the amount of available land. Not a major issue on Pangaea.

    My recommendation right now is not to focus on wonders. Stonehenge is usually a waste of hammers. Depending on land we may guide you toward a particular wonder, but otherwise let's not pay attention to them. Wonders generally don't win you games though a couple are quite powerful in the right situation.

    As for turnset, there is no fixed time guideline, but shorter the better. Always feel free to post a report ANYTIME you have questions, concerns, or feel you need guidance. That may be 1 turn, 5 turns or 10 turns...does not matter. The point is getting advice when it counts.

    Generally, you get some guidance at Turn 0 on the start position/where to settle. Then play until the worker arrives while you scout in a rough 5-10 tile radius around your cap.
     
  8. Hot_Dawg

    Hot_Dawg Chieftain

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    Thanks dankok8, I wasn't sure whether or not to include a screenshot. I'll make sure to include one moving forward. But yeah, I'm hoping to do the same thing you're doing, which is beating immortal and eventually deity on a regular basis. And thanks for letting me know lymond, I wasn't too sure about when to ask for help. That said, if Stonehenge isn't needed I won't build it in that case. I just always assumed it was a must for the border pop in new cities.

    Here's my screenshot. I was thinking of settling on spot and going straight for BW, then agriculture, while exploring with my warrior. What do you guys think?

    Spoiler :

    Capture.PNG
     
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2020
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  9. lymond

    lymond Rise Up! (Phoenix Style!) Hall of Fame Staff

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    Please put images in spoiler tags..helps with page loading :)

    Can't help much at moment since SGOTM, but first 2 objectives at start is analyzing the map data and then making a decision on moving the starting unit (warrior or scout) to increase that data.

    I do not like coastal starts, especially on Pangaea so often inclined to move inland if warranted. Warrior does not reveal much moving northernly, but could reveal possible seafood to the S. Clearly no seafood, making coastal even less attractive.

    Note: 2N of settler is very likely some kinda of hidden resource.
     
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  10. Hot_Dawg

    Hot_Dawg Chieftain

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    Sorry about that, I'll make sure to use spoiler tags as well. What should I look for in this situation? Assuming there is seafood when I move the warrior 1S, would that make an ideal 2nd city? I'm heading out so I'll make the moves when I get back. Also out of curiosity, how come you don't like coastal starts?
     
  11. dankok8

    dankok8 Elected World Leader

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  12. lymond

    lymond Rise Up! (Phoenix Style!) Hall of Fame Staff

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    Ok..bit more time now.

    First Mr. Dawg, I should point out one very very important concept that you need to get ingrained in the membrane now. In Civ IV , FOOD is KING. Everything centers around food. Your first objective should always be about improving your food specials (.i.e. corn). So any tech decision would center around what you need for food, unless you start with the requisite tech(s) needed.

    Further to that, and back to the start location analysis, when you look at your land and decision making that generally always centers around the best visible food special present (again corn...wet corn that is). One might consider moving the settler but that decision is still centered on maintaining that great food in the BFC (Big Fat Cross). Moving settler is quite common actually but it is done so with purpose..that is to get some sort of start bonus, improve overall city location, find more food, or in some cases split food better.

    In this case, as mentioned, Warrior moving N-ish does not even reveal new info here (well, NW would) so SW at least has a purpose of possibly revealing orphaned seafood should one SIP (Settle in Place).

    Okay, next we note other visible resources...dyes (check), nanners (check). Ok but these resources are not keeping me tied to SIP here..these are not of "short-term" value.

    Next we do what is called "fog-gazing" . (Actually you would do this before moving warrior or scout but we already know here that does nothing here). Fog-gazing is looking into the adjacent fog tiles to your visible tiles and making educated guess as to the terrains and maybe even resources present.

    For example, 2E of the settler clearly appears to be unforested flat grass tile (could be a resource or food resource). Other thoughts here:
    2N of corn - flat unforested
    2N and 2N1W of warrior is coast. However, hover mouse over the unforested grasshill 2N1W of warrior. Notice it says "fresh water". That water must belong to a lake.
    West is clear all coast
    2N of settler, as mentioned earlier, I feel strongly is some hidden resource.
    3N of settler is a forest.

    Noting forests is important as likely they will not contain a resource unless you are closer to the polar regions of a map. (deer, furs)

    So my inclination here would be to move inland. You could start by moving 1 tile 1NE with settler to spy tile 2E just to see if resource that my change decision. My target though would be the grasshill 2xNE of the settler as the hill will give a broad view of land further N and E.

    (Ha..all this sounds complex and your probably like "wow ..lot of effort just for turn 0 decision making" but one can really improve their starts with giving more thought to them sometimes quite signficantly)

    And and as for coast starts. In general, coast starts are just tougher and slower, especially if dealing with seafoods as food and moreso without Fish tech and a way to speed the first work boat. Second, coastal caps are generally not ideal especially for Bureaucracy. You want cottages. Lastly, as for Pangaea maps coast cities are nigh irrelevant.

    With all that said, you could just roll a new game and find a non-coastal start. (I'd recommend it) If you do, please do at least have one visible strong food tile like a corn or pigs. Its not that one needs to roll starts with that but for learning I don't want you to roll some super crappy start..ha
     
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2020
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  13. Hot_Dawg

    Hot_Dawg Chieftain

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    Thanks a lot for all the helpful advice lymond. I never really considered any of that stuff before. I just always went with, as long as it has a food resource I'll settle here for turn 0. So anytime I start a new game, the first tech should be either agriculture or AH? I always figured it was a good idea to go BW first for chopping. Either way, I did make the moves and here's a pic.

    Spoiler :

    Capture.PNG


    However, I also considered what you said about re-rolling the map, so I went ahead and did that as well. Interesting enough I got another coastal start, but with 2 food sources and stone.
    Spoiler :

    Capture.PNG

    What do you guys think about this? Should I re-roll again or go with one of these 2 starting points?
     
  14. lymond

    lymond Rise Up! (Phoenix Style!) Hall of Fame Staff

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    Well, the point was to re-roll until you find a non-coastal start, but that start is not bad at all with stone in BFC and two solid food resources (one great). Your screenies are kinda small so can't make out what type of hill the settler is standing on. If it's a PH then I'd SIP here no doubt. If not I'd consider settling on the stone.

    I know we said eschew wonders for now but Stone means one thing - Pyramids. We can still avoid it though for now.

    (Side note: From your screenie of the first game, what I'd do in your case is "step" the settler 1NE and then re-assess. In this case you spotted the sugar tile. Even though I said I like to move inland the sugar represents an opportunity to get a bonus tile to the city center, while keeping your wet corn of course.. In this case you would get an extra :food: to the center tile making it (3F1H1C). I would of settled on the sugar there, which would have been best in hindsight anyway seeing all that nasty jungle.)

    Furthermore, on the subject of bonus tiles, that is the reason I asked what type of hill that is in the second game. If it is a plains hill you get and extra hammer to the city center tile. Settling on stone does the same thing. Basically anything you settle on that as an extra hammer, food , commerce will add to the center tile (destroying flood plains or forest on the tile does not count but basically it is What you See is What you Get. That bonus food or hammer helps speed up your start. Extra commerce a boost to tech.

    So anyway, returning to that earlier discussion of analyzing your start position, one of the first thing I look for is an opportunity to settle on a bonus tile while keeping the food. Rolling a start with a Settler standing on a PH is always pleasant.

    edit: And yeah, I have absolutely no problem at all settling on a resource like a sugar or even a banana, or stone. Sugar and nanners are calendar resources which don't benefit you for quite some time later. The point is getting the boost asap cause IV is about doing more stuff sooner for snow-balling.
     
  15. lymond

    lymond Rise Up! (Phoenix Style!) Hall of Fame Staff

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    Pretty sure that is a grass hill, so I would settle on the stone. Warrior not much help here but I send him SW for now.

    BW is indeed something you want asap in most situation but not at expense of food focus first. Sometimes you simply have a leader with the right starting techs that you can go straight to BW, but always focus food. (There are some rare exceptions of a BW first start at expense of food initially..Hard to explain really, but basically just boils down to what is faster when looking at tons of idle worker turns)
     
  16. Hot_Dawg

    Hot_Dawg Chieftain

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    Yikes, I was worried it was gonna be hard to see. I play in windowed mode because of the smaller resolution, otherwise it's a blurry mess. But yeah it's a grasshill. I only asked if this start was more worthwhile because of the 2 food and stone being there. One thing I am wondering, and I've struggled with this before, at what point do you begin building pyramids? Or does it depend on the situation at hand? As far as settling on resources, does this advice apply for the whole game or just the early game? I'm also assuming I should avoid settling on grassland that's not on a river, or am I wrong?

    Here's what I got so far. In terms of tech, would I go argculture, AH, then BW? Then for units, I was thinking worker-warrior-settler-worker-worker. But if there's better options let me know.

    Spoiler :

    Capture.PNG
    [\SPOILER]
     

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  17. dankok8

    dankok8 Elected World Leader

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    Settling on the Stone can be really good because as soon as you research Masonry it's hooked up. There is no need to build Road + Quarry which takes lots of time.

    You can't research BW without having Mining first and Japan doesn't start with Mining so you need that first.
     
  18. Hot_Dawg

    Hot_Dawg Chieftain

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    That is pretty cool, I wasn't aware of that. Do you think I should go for masonry after AH? Also I was aware that I needed mining before BW. That's kinda why I was wondering if BW was worth going after first, that way after I have another settler I know where copper is.

    I went ahead and played the first 15 turns. Here's what I'm working with so far. Zulu is north of me, I'm not sure how far he is though. I was thinking of settling on top of the gold, would that be a good play? I'm also planning to move my 1st warrior west and have him circle around if I can, while the 2nd warrior fog busts the south.

    Spoiler :

    Capture.PNG
    [\SPOILER]
     
  19. lymond

    lymond Rise Up! (Phoenix Style!) Hall of Fame Staff

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    Yeah, don't bother distorting the pics for size..it's not that big a deal. If you use a site like Imgur you can resize nicely when you upload to the site, then just copy the BBCode field directly to your post.

    Well, when one says they are going BW, then Mining can be implied/assumed.

    BW definitely before Masonry. I might even go for Writing before Masonry. This is only Prince level so you have quite some time.

    No, I would not settle on Gold. Gold is an extremely valuable tile early. I'd only settle on a gold if other gold were present such that it would be silly considering working all of them since gold is always food negative.

    Jungle is always a bit ugly early on so I would not focus much scouting in that direction.. You are not really going to want to settle in jungle area early. Clams/banana may be an exception since a) workable food b) very likely hidden resource.

    1N of gold looks pretty good here. City can share cows and work the gold early for that huge commerce boost and eventually get its on corn, which just so happens to be wet due to that oasis, and oasis is decent too for growth. Very good spot. Clams spot I'd have an AI depending on possible horse/copper.

    Gold city may be a good spot later to chop Mids once stone is online.

    posts saves too, including the start
     
  20. Lennier

    Lennier Emperor

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    You can also adjust the resolution of the game in the settings menu.
     

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