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Has the difficulty level been increased in a recent patch?

Discussion in 'Civ5 - General Discussions' started by Horizons, Oct 5, 2013.

  1. dashwinner

    dashwinner Chieftain

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    It's seems by reading all your posts that you were already decided on that idea, and I disagree strongly. There are plenty of posts that could help you do little things to improve your game while still enjoying it at a leisurely pace, ESPECIALLY on a difficulty like prince. I mean I know we all have our own difficulty thresholds but one would think you were talking about emperor or immortal...

    Anyways, here's 5 quick and easy tips to make your game less frustrating:

    1. Science is king, and will win you the game. More population = more science. Therefore, focus your early game on making sure you have a science buildings up quickly, and growing your population

    2. Try to build your cities on hills whenever possible. It will give you an early production boost, as well as make them harder to conquer.

    3. Build the national college ASAP. This will vary every game, but you have to figure if you can afford a new city (+it's library), or you should wait to expand until after NC is done.

    4. Explore! Beside the obvious benefits of ruins, exploring will gain you gold from city states, be able to find out where you should focus your military (barb camps, aggressive AI), and find you good locations for new cities (new luxuries, natural wonders, etc)

    5. With 4 archers, one meld, and a city on a hill, you should be able to repel any invasion. Walls and upgrade archers are also options.

    6. (Bonus cos I'm feeling nice). Leave starting wonders for later. You will be amazed in the difference between spending20+ turns waiting for a wonder early game compared to the 3 arches, or granary + library, or extra settlers you could pump out in the same time. If you get a good lead, you'll be able to bag any later wonder you want.
     
  2. EK834

    EK834 Chieftain

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    Either that or he limits himself to one early Wonder, and make the most of it by focusing on its benefits. Venice is a good civ for casual on King as you don't have a choice not to expand and it's very easy to play for anyone familiar with the game mechanics. If you like expansion it will at least gets you into the habit and advantages of waiting and focusing at first on science and growth, as there's no way out of that. Venice on a hill makes getting the Great Library without major sacrifice to growth quite possible (no need to delay those farms to chop forests). Starting the NC ASAP afterward pushes you in the tech lead early, after which playing more casually is quite possible. On King this most of the times leaves you time to get your 3 archers before an AI attacks, and having just a capital slows this down anyway. Then Optics and a bought CS and an internal trade route to grow Venice even faster gets you set for your more casual game. If the huts provide free citizens, it's a total no brainer to get the GL.

    Once in the lead all VC are open with Venice, though I never tried Sciences with it without Freedom + Space Procurement. Domination is quite feasible, as you have the gold for a large army, a good tech lead and plenty of allied mercantile CS for happiness, and to buy your puppets happiness buildings.

    Portugal and Poland played tall I also find fairly easy to play on King. Austria too.

    If the huts provide faith, a growth pantheon and Stonehenge for an early pick at a religion as you make your way to Philosophy and the NC is another easy alternative if you leave the other early Wonders alone. I've got really dominant religious games with Venice on King. I was swimming in money with Tithe + the trade routes, got many Wonders with GE bought with faith, extra growth with Swords into Plowshares + internal trade routes from 3 puppets, and you can make your life even easier if you pick them on islands or in good locations to make their defense a ride in the park.

    Venice games also most often give you a good break on unhappiness issues. All that without having to go down to the "boring" Prince level where the AI don't seem to offer any challenge.

    After a few games, the big difference on King after the patch is that even GL+NC+growth isn't enough to build a comfortable tech lead. You need to keep working on it a while longer with early Education, GS for academies, Rationalism etc. and "growth over gold" where the TR and CS are concerned. Pre patch the AI didn't build its science well and King was more forgiving if you got a lead and sat on it a while. Now if you do that the AI catch up to you much faster.
     
  3. greygamer

    greygamer Feudal Lord

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    Some games, maybe 1 in 20 in my experience have no-win maps, there have been some good pointers in this thread but you seem to have a very negative attitude. Perhaps this game is not for you.
     
  4. redwings1340

    redwings1340 Chieftain

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    Hmm, what's your definition of a fun civ game? If you've played this enough to beat it on prince consistently, there is clearly something about Civ that you like, despite your relative dislike of the game post patch. Civ should be first and foremost about having fun, so what do you like doing in civ games, and what specifically do you feel prevented from doing in King difficulty? Maybe if we frame the question this way we can discuss a way you can continue playing the game in a way where you might enjoy it in the future?

    Upgrading difficulties can often feel like a tough and difficult transition, and losing or getting crushed is not fun, especially when you're just consistently surprised at how much more the AI has compared to before. Going back to Prince isn't necessarily a bad decision right now, and if you're frustrated, taking a break wouldn't be bad either. If you don't like the game anymore, there's nothing wrong with not playing it either, but I do know there are a lot of different ways you can play to beat King, and the difficulty is definitely not impossible unless they made post patch King more difficult than pre patch immortal, which I highly doubt they did.
     
  5. tekjunkie

    tekjunkie Twitch : Tekjunkie28

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    I strongly disagree here with all due respect. I play very casually but mainly bc the AI just doesn't seem difficult to me. This patch so far seems to bring this game up a few notches which is great. I want to have to think. My brain needs excersize . I really wish the AI was better at army composition.
     
  6. Kraznaya

    Kraznaya Princeps

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    should post starting saves of such games
     
  7. mediobogdum

    mediobogdum Chieftain

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    I thank you gentlemen, you're advice was spot on.


    Once I got the early money issue worked out everything is moving along nicely.

    It is mollifying to find my early game strategy was so brittle.


    Thanks again.
     
  8. Horizons

    Horizons Needing fed again!

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    I have gone back to Prince and it just seems to be easier more 'pervasively - it feels like I get more of the good huts, the rewards of said huts are better ... in comparison with King, I can build the lion's share of wonders (if I want to), even combat results seem to fare better (again because I can beat the AI to wonders I suppose).

    The overwhelming sensation I get now is that technology whizzes past at such an unbelievable rate (at least until modern onwards) that the problem is being overwhelmed with choices of what to build. Both buildings and units. And I would say that it IS stressful because you know that the AI is receiving enormous bonuses that allow it to build everything, it does not need to make the same opportunity costs.

    In this respect it feels a lot like Civ4: Colonization, another Shafter production. Unlimited choice but nowhere near enough time to build everything ... at least until you are in the modern era with size 30 cities and you are teching at a snail's pace, and even the AI is still pushing around gattling guns and lancers in the year 2000.

    I dunno? It just seems unbalanced for a normal player ... I would love to be walked through how a top player does things and see the game being more balanced and exciting.
     
  9. Horizons

    Horizons Needing fed again!

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    I mean, playing right now (and posting here on the second screen lol) and the ancient era just DISAPPEARED ... and I am still doing the basics, while the AI has spammed cities all over the place, built wonders, raised armies ... it's miserable and it's no fun.
     
  10. Horizons

    Horizons Needing fed again!

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    Bleeding money even with trade routes ... can't afford an army ... teching every few turns ... can't keep up with stuff to build ... this is on Prince ... am I just burned out or has this game been tweaked so much it's unbearable?
     
  11. Matthew.

    Matthew. Chieftain

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    Sounds like you are doing something very wrong.
     
  12. dashwinner

    dashwinner Chieftain

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    Have you actually read any of the many replies that people took the time to write out?
     
  13. greygamer

    greygamer Feudal Lord

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    It might be worth putting the save file up for analysis or some screen shots. If you don't know how to do that I expect someone could guide us you through the process.

    If it is a game in progress you should still have the initial saves as autosaves. A step by step analysis would be very helpful, I'm not pro-enough to do one myself but I have found I can win using Liberty/Honor starts without the problems you seem to be having (on King level). I can vary my build order and am still successful. I am quite bad at getting trade routes running and maintaining them.

    I don't worry too much if I Dow because of expansion, I expect it and build walls.

    So anyone up for doing a walkthrough on this subject, just to show why Liberty is perfectly viable and why?
     
  14. liv

    liv Warlord

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    The no money from rivers was a bit hard to get used to but it is not a major obstacle to war or to expansion.
    I think two things are more important now - sell luxeries and do not build roads too early. If you are going for a wide empire you can build your cities a bit closer so that road cost is not too major. When I build road I try to have several workers working on it so that cities are connected faster
    If you want to afford a larger army you may want to play as Germany or the Zulus. Askia can be fine if you have room and many huts.
    Poland is probably the easiest civ to play. Hope for many animals and horses and build ducal stables and circuses. Because you get extra social policies you can decide to go a few policies down tradition as well as filling out liberty

    I still have a lot of fun with civ even if I favour expansion over tall empires
     
  15. EK834

    EK834 Chieftain

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    It doesn't quite build everything everywhere, it prioritizes what it needs. That's why it performs better than you even on Prince where its bonuses aren't many. It shouldn't be able to do so much better than you if you have some experience of playing the game.

    But you're not supposed to build everything even in the late game, you're supposed to choose according to location, goals, priorities and needs for synergy etc. It's a strategy game. It would be a totally pointless game if it let you get the cash to simply get everything everywhere and as soon as available.

    Someone already mentioned that if you're so strangled for cash you probably build more units than you actually would need if you honed your defense skills a bit - learn to use terrain to your advantage etc., and probably pay maintenance on early roads for nothing (the rule of thumb is to wait until the city you connect to your capital is at least equal in size to the # of tiles separating it from your capital (or other city), so it pays for the road maintenance and generate profit from the connection). I know some people used to pre-build roads for future cities so they're instantly connected when they are founded. In Civ 5 it's an absolute "don't".

    You probably also build too many buildings or too early (and the wrong ones), and they drain your treasury with little or even no benefit at all (a Lighthouse is all well and good, but if you won't work those water tiles for 200 more turns, you shouldn't build one just because you've now got the tech to do it). It probably means you focus too much on getting your production tiles enhanced and worked not to miss your Wonders, which in turn slows your growth because you've delayed building farms, which means less pop, less gpt and above all, less science.

    Wonder spamming is a bad addiction. A lot of time the turns are much better spent on getting the right buildings or units for your strategy.

    In most situations avoid the GL if you're not working a strategy to get Philosophy from it and thus be able to start on the National College immediately (on Prince, it is a good strategy almost certain to give you the tech lead early. Since the patch you need to keep going toward Education and keep growing or the AI might eventually catch up, though). If you've expanded early and won't be able to start the NC before your new 2 pop city finally builds a library in 40 turns, you've wasted the benefit and should have built something else and beeline Philosophy while you get your last libraries up instead (and yes, the NC is important enough you might want to delay expansion beyond 2-3 cities before you build it).

    Don't build Terra Cotta Army if you've got a small army and no intent to go to war offensively. Don't build the Great Wall if you don't need the defense bonus. Don't build the Great Lighthouse if your coastal city won't need a Lighthouse for a hundred of turns; that +1 movement +1 sight isn't worth it, especially if you're not keen on relying on a navy later, and if you do build the Great Lighthouse, make sure to use that edge to get those fast caravels up early to explore and be the one to found the WC, to find NW and CS. The Hanging Gardens isn't that great if you can get cargo ships up in that time that will give your city +8 food...

    There's no point to building Stonehenge if once you get a religion you do nothing or not much with it, or if it won't really serve your strategy. Spend those hammers on getting an edge on growth (not Stonehenge but a granary), science, culture or something else instead.

    Etc.

    Beating the AI to Wonders sure is fun, but going for too many while most aren't even useful to your stragegy is another reason why you struggle so much in your games and haven't got the useful buildings up when you should. While you do that, the AI builds what it can use, and it's how you end up losing or struggling too much. It also invites AI aggression. Sometime it's even good strategy to let the AI waste its best city to build a Wonder (especially since it often can't make much of its benefits... Petra built in cities with just 2-3 desert tiles and such).

    Something to be more careful about than before even on Prince: grow and tech well. The AI used to handle badly the science buildings, now it's much better. You need to keep up. Some very wide civs have become more dangerous in the late game as a result. A wide Bismarck often sucked, unable to keep up in science with the tall civs. Now he's likely to gain a few techs on everyone after Industrial if you let him grow too big, because he will have those Universities, PS and RL up, and his NC... Same for Catherine and Casimir.

    Another problem you might have is that you worry too much about the score board and getting in the first position and staying there through the game. Trying to get and stay in first position often lead to bad strategic decisions (too many Wonders, for one thing), and there are many advantages to remaining in the "middle pack" - in diplomacy and with lowering aggression notably.

    Once you're solidly in the tech lead and have your tech buildings up, it can be the right time to get those Wonders. Again, those that help your actual strategy, or that block the AI's if they have an edge in something.
     
  16. NorthNovas

    NorthNovas Chieftain

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    Excellent points EK834; especially this one!. I stopped posting the score because it was a distraction in the game. I will view it to occasionally but I no longer let it influence my play. Now I just have to master the other points made to win more consistently. :goodjob:
     
  17. Muskie

    Muskie Chieftain

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    I think so. At the very least you need to take a few games to try to refine your strategy. My personal strategy has been refined over 100s of hours, rarely do I deviate form my first five techs and builds, but I do try new Civs and Policy openings.

    I just think Stonehenge and National College are so worthwhile that I target them regardless of which Civ or overall strategy I might have.
     
  18. EK834

    EK834 Chieftain

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    I like Stonehenge as an alternative to Piety as well, but I try to create a synergy between my beliefs and my strategy (I like the growth beliefs/pantheon. I like Tithe, but I won't pick it unless I plan to spead my religion a lot).
     
  19. Firesmacker

    Firesmacker Chieftain

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    As far as the difficulty being raised, it's hard for me to say since I bumped up to Emperor a few weeks before it came out.

    As to not getting the good stuff from goodie huts...um, yeah, that's pretty much how it goes above Prince. Nowadays if I get just one free tech I'm as giddy as a school girl. If I can get that plus a culture and a faith ruin, I think I just won the friggin' lottery.

    For the gold problems, everyone has those at some point in just about every game, you just have to be patient and/or sell off a unit or two that you can live without. If the situation is dire, I'll rush to mathematics and get markets up asap.

    Anyway, I hope you get it sorted out and good luck to you.
     
  20. Muskie

    Muskie Chieftain

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    I never do this and I've been playing Civ since the beginning. I do it as much for aesthetics. It seems cheating to me that you can just settle on top of grapes and all of the sudden you know how to make wine. Plus surely as your city grows to 5, 10, 20, 30 population all your vines get cut down to make way for houses. I don't think the game should let you settle on top of grapes and then have wine forever...
     

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