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How do i get big without getting my Science destroyed? (Aka HELP, FRANCE UHV IS MAKING ME INSANE)

Discussion in 'Gameplay Guides' started by Logoncal, Jul 24, 2018.

  1. Logoncal

    Logoncal Chieftain

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    A little warning: I will give you a big middle finger if you ask me to change to Heir, because that's exactly what i DONT want.

    I've been trying to win historically as France, but it's buttclenchingly difficult on every aspect.

    Basically, to win historically as France i must:

    Have Paris halfway Legendary by 1700 AD
    Control almost half of Europe and North America.
    (For reference, i got 40% of Europe by getting Italy, Germany, Poland, Austria, Serbia and Iberia while North America is essentially the Louisiana - The colony, not the state - and bits of Canada.)
    Build the Notre Dame, Versailles, Eiffel Tower and the Statue of Liberty... for some reason. I know, France gifted the US the statue but really?!

    My problem ATM is that i managed to get the first 2 out of the way.... and now i'm screwed because America is about to spawn with 5-7 techs ahead of me, pretty much ready to build Lady Liberty and Railroad is too far for me. My tech rate is at 0, getting like 6 gold per turn and my science is 100 beakers per turn.

    I'm too afraid to counter this by liberating my cities because i'm already at -6 Recession, worrying that it will get worse. Evren then, i'm still sure that America will just beat me to the Statue since they spawn at 1776 and i cant liberate my conquered cities and colonies before 1800.

    So, i just want to know: How do i make big bucks, big science with big lands while also not being financially crippled. Any suggestions?

    Here is my monstrosity of a save.
     

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  2. Enyavar

    Enyavar Chieftain

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    First, I know how frustrating these goals can be, seeing how I vented over the ancient civ puzzles with which I had started, and I'm trying some medieval civs next.

    So, I haven't played France yet and don't know about all intricacies involved, but I overlooked the requirements (entirely theoretically) to devise a basic strategy. Tell me if I make wrong assumptions.

    The requirement is to stay small first and NOT control all of Europe already in 1700. Concentrate on culture as per Goal1. Concentrate on building up the core, don't take European cities while constantly harassing them so that they can't develop properly. Parts that you don't control but plan to do so in 1800, should be kept undeveloped "wasteland", the enemy cities should then be huddled with weak defenders. Have an outer ring of border-core cities and work on removing all rival cities that dare to interfere. Of course, colonize NAmerica in a steady movement. Then, in the 1760ies, you conquer all of Europe in a hurry, using your tech advantage, fulfill the goal, and then shrink back just as quickly.

    Also, I don't know if "control" is allowing vassals, which could double as staging areas for your border raids on the rest. Have you tested that part?

    As far as I can see, Infrastructure is the key. Instead of specializing, I build everything everywhere (as time and hammers allow). In foreign areas, only fully developed cities with lots of production and coins are useful. Either control them early enough so that universities and banks are there, for many centuries already, or you better not control them at all, because they are draining you a LOT before they become productive (again).

    If nothing else helps, resort to cheese: start as the Romans, build up France Infrastructure. Tech ahead to contain the Gothic, Germanic and Hunnic hordes, keep Rome alive until France is going to enter the stage. Then inherit a fully functional empire (including the Legions?). If the situation allows, control the production/trade/resource powerhouses London and Rome early, build them up, but keep the rest of Europe down and ready to conquer.
     
  3. Orbii

    Orbii Chieftain

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    What difficulty/game speed and scenario are you starting on? I'm at work so I cannot view your save, but the 993 turns suggests 3000AD Marathon. This should make the game easier off basic principles: you have the Roman infrastructure (wonders + tile improvement) and Marathon is insanely abusable.

    Regardless, I'll offer the following comments from my Monarch/Normal 600 AD France games (note I have not played France since their starting army was nerfed, but that just slows things down and requires more whips):

    Spoiler :

    • Use Despotism and whip out catapults from Marseille to conquer Rome early.
    • Whip out galleys from Bordeaux to conquer England with. Their starting army is pathetic and London is a strong city.
    • Focus Paris on making buildings, and start running artists there ASAP.
    • Don't build Notre Dame in Paris. Its production is mediocre early and there's other things to build. If you really want it there use a Great Eng.
    • For tile improvements, I use a mix of farms, cottages, and lumbermills.
    • For civics, I stay on Despotism, Manoralism, Citizenship --> Vassalage, Clergy, Trade Econ, and Tributaries until modern civics.
    As with any European Civ, the path to glory is an early conquest of parts of other European cores, and then leveraging Europe's modifiers and land towards your UHV. For France, the easiest targets for this are England (with a Scottish rump vassal), Italy, and Spain. With this land there should be absolutely no economic difficulties, so long as it is developed consistently.

    I will corroborate Enyavar's comment that expanding too much earlyear an error, but in the opposite direction: do Europe early, and North America later. Your return on investment from conquering Europe is much much greater than the far flung North American colonies.

     
  4. Logoncal

    Logoncal Chieftain

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    Funny how you suggest taking London, considering that the French did indeed take England.
    Well, Normandy did. But they're french, riiiight?!
     
  5. Logoncal

    Logoncal Chieftain

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    YES
    I DID IT

    You were right, @Orbii! I needed to conquer early, and i did. Took Spain and England and was able to develop much faster with these cities.
    I also quickly settled North America, enough to get 40% even with the American spawn

    That being said, wasn't easy. I did lose Spain because of instability, but it didnt matter since i killed all of it's army and capitulated him again.

    Prussia was also easy to capitulate. All i did was settle my stack on Paris and let him come with his stack. Since Heavy Cannons are superior, his stack went down like flies and he immediately surrendered, being capitulated again. I did get below 40% after a while, because Italy kept pushing its borders with it's cancerous culture. Didn't matter. Took Naples and Venice.

    Overall, this wasn't easy. At all. The danger or collapsing was constant and anything i did wrong, even one wrong step, would mean that i would fail. Heck, i barely got the 75000 culture, got it on the last 30 turns.




     
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  6. Enyavar

    Enyavar Chieftain

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    Seeing no other France thread, I'll post my campaign story here. This isn't exactly a walkthrough, because I made it extremely easy for myself.

    Playing Monarch France, DoC 1.15, 3000 Start, Normal Speed.

    Starting as Rome, I immediately realized that I was not going to fulfill the extremely ambitious Roman UHV. I think that the teching order should be Engineering (colloseum!) and Law (citizenship!) and Currency (forums!). The problem is that even with trading with my neighbors, China would still quickly get Architecture and other techs before me.

    Regarding the Roman war targets: Greece is a a great multiplicator and I should have gone there first with my starting troops. Carthage has to be second (they either got their Elephants for free, or they get an unfair tech advantage on Monarch). Upon a reload, I chose neither as a target, and planned to switch to France instead. So my legions were meant for fighting Gauls, Barbarians, and build glorious Roman roads all over Gaul.

    I managed goal 1: 6 barracks, 5 aqueducts, 4 amphitheaters, 3 forums. That was no small feat even when I had written off all the other goals. I also got a few wonders: Parthenon in Mediolanum, Collosseum in Rome, and Hagia Sophia in Colonia Agrippinensis. Directly after Sophia was ready, I finished my first cathedral in Nemausus (Nîmes/Marseille) and thus switched to Catholicism. That meant that all my churches and monasteries would provide +2 production! When that was made sure, all that was left was fending off the barbarian hordes - waves and waves.

    When the time was ready to switch to France, I had built a wonderful infrastructure with 5 future core cities - Paris was then going to sit in the middle and grow into the central spot, while the other core cities would continue to grow outwards. This was going to require early war with all the neighbors - Rome first, then Spain, then England, then Holy Rome.

    Spoiler The Empire ready for flipping over... :
    001_PreparationEmpire.JPG
    002PreparationEmpire.JPG
     
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2018
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  7. Enyavar

    Enyavar Chieftain

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    Spoiler And that was exactly what happened :
    004_Taking_over.JPG

    I had prepared waaay too many legions - I thought as Caesar. But instead of it all being to much, it turned out that I could have built some more, especially siege weapons: I sacrificed legions, horsemen and crossbows left and right (of course, the switch had erased all experience :sad:) until I had the surviving troops experienced enough... and cleared out the rival civs all around me. With five core cities + Paris, I needed room for my expansion first!

    I then built a decent force of knights aka lancers, a few trebuchets and more crossbows. Those were of great use in my fight against Holy Rome - who wouldn't vasallize after I razed Frankfurt.

    Civic-wise, I switched to Despotism and Conquest in the first round as France even before the great flip. The plan was to switch to Tributaries and Citizenship once I had subjugated Rome, Spain and England (done in less than 20 rounds!).

    Spoiler France in 900 AD: :

    Northern France 005_NorthernFrance.JPG
    ... and Southern France. 006_NorthernFrance.JPG


    Regarding the wonders in Paris, I built Monastery and Church first, great-engineered Notre Dame, built the second cathedral, and then prioritized culture buildings. A few times at the start, I whipped more buildings in Paris, but otherwise, whipping was reserved for the foreign cities, like Londres, Valence and Rome.
    Spoiler My progress in the culture field for Goal I was: :
    900 AD - 89 (+28) - Research Patronage
    1000 AD - 506 (+48) - Humanities
    1100 AD - 1219 (+60) - Gunpowder
    1200 AD - 2347 (+154) - Optics
    1300 AD - 4635 (+264) - Geography
    1400 AD - 7946 (+400) - Company
    1450 AD - 13301 (+436) - Social Contract
    1500 AD - 19280 (+580) - Representation
    1550 AD - 26802 (+628) - Journalism
    1600 AD - 35123 (+660) - Ballistics
    1650 AD - 43158 (+652) - Measurement
    1700 AD - 51824 (+787) - Assembly Line
    1751 AD - 69315 (+860) - Infrastructure
    1802 AD - 90336 (+1156) - Telecommunications and Victory

    Spoiler And France in 1000 AD :
    Northern France: 008_NorthernFrance1000.JPG
    and Southern France. 008_SoutherFrance1000.JPG


    In the year 1080, a Chinese caravel appeared at the Moorish coast, boasting of an insane Chinese tech advantage.
    Spoiler China! :
    009_FearsomeChina.JPG Spoiler alert: They fell. Hard.
    ChinaLost!.JPG

    Such a prosperous China was horrible news, I decided.
    For stability reasons and also because I would eventually lose these cities anyhow to Prussia, I gifted Hambourg and Brandenbourg (to Vikings and Polish) and conquered Cordoba. Lacking Madrid, this was going to be a wonderful production place, even if developed a bit late. For the same reasons, I also conquered Constantinople and Athens, unaware that they were included in the Turkish Flipzone (they weren't in original RFC).
    Then I constantly developed all cities as quickly as possible to maximize wealth and science, while also starting to explore the world. Directly after building the San Marco Basilica, I discovered the prerequisite Tech for Protestantism and switched to the new Faith with the Holy City in Paris. That meant I had to rebuild the State Religion buildings in most of my cities, but also it meant even more culture. Also, Portugal was Anti-Reformation and I vassalized them. (Which meant, I had neutralized the last Colonial power in Europe except for myself. Portugal still founded several colonies and kept losing them just as quickly). Ah, also I discovered that Mexiko and Peru were already Christian, but that is a different story and was told at a different thread already.
    Spoiler France in 1200 AD: :

    Northern France:
    010_NorthernFrance1200AD.JPG
    And Southwestern France:
    010_SouthWesternFrance1200AD.JPG
    and of course, SouthEastern France: 010_SouthEasternFrance1200AD.JPG

    Fortunately, China and Mongolia collapsed in the same turn, in the year 1410. Around that time, China had already developed Machine Tools, so they had already arrived in the Industrial Age. I had deliberately delayed my science a bit so that I would profit as long as possible from Collosseum and Parthenon (and later, from castles and monasteries, and from San Marco and Hagia), and also to build up all my European cities. Still, now was the time to cross the pond, and I founded my first three colonies in America shortly after 1400. Saint-Louis was going to be the Administrative Center in NA.
     
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  8. Logoncal

    Logoncal Chieftain

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    Good ******* God, i forgot how ridiculous China is on 1.15 Installer
     
  9. Enyavar

    Enyavar Chieftain

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    Oh yeah, Great Persons. Around 1450, Paris was producing great people within 6 turns, and there was no need to force Great Artists. I didn't culturebomb because there were many centuries of time left, and I was going to get a +400% culture bonus, as witnessed by the table one post above. I wound up having six Manufactories, two admin centers, three stock exchanges, two museums, three academies, two shrines, a settled Merchant/Prophet/Engineer/Scientist each in Paris and one Trade Mission with Tamil Ceylon (+2100). Also, 2 artists settled in America just for fun, and one golden age (which was exceptional, because I usually don't go for those). Some engineers were used for wonders, but I don't remember how many. I probably foget about some GPs, too. I had a total of six settled generals (in Cologne, Rome and Athens) as well as two Generals who rode to battle and two Armouries...
    With a science output that could research me technologies within 1-3 turns, I saw no reason to sacrifice GPs for bulbs. They're valuable!

    Spoiler France in 1500 AD: :
    Western France: Civ4ScreenShot0030.JPG Northern France: Civ4ScreenShot0031.JPG
    Southern France: Civ4ScreenShot0032.JPG


    In 1515, I used one of the Great Statesmen to switch from Despotism/Manorialism/Clergy/Vassalism/Regulation/Tributaries to Democracy/Individualism/Tolerance/Constitution/Entrepreneurialism/Colonialism. The main reason was that the old combination was outdated. Democracy was needed for Statue of Liberty (I'd have loved to continue whipping, but UHV have priority). Regulation had been in use to build all the Custom Houses, so Free Enterprises seemed better as well. Tributaries were great, but with Colonialism, I could start to get and use slaves (fighting the Natives in NA) and also get 12-EXP ships. I wasn't nearly as happy about losing Clergy and Vassalism, but they were part of a package that no longer fit. Also, I love to have multireligious empires, so Tolerance was my chance.

    Spoiler France in 1600 AD: :
    Western France: Civ4ScreenShot0038.JPG
    Northern France: Civ4ScreenShot0035.JPG
    Southern France: Civ4ScreenShot0036.JPG
    Totally new: Eastern France: Civ4ScreenShot0037.JPG


    Turkey had been unstable for a bit, and lost several cities, among them Athène which I promptly reclaimed. Later, I also attacked Constantinoples and then made peace with Turkey again. They didn't matter afterwards, exept for the congresses where they always put that matter on the table and I bought them off. Soon, China was also around (again) and I hadn't yet surpassed their Science. They were researching Thermodynamics in 1530, then Ballistics...
    But my technology drive remained unstoppable, and I finished the Eiffel Tower, last of the four 1900-wonders... In 1675, further details below. I could have managed even earlier, but 1600 would have been a real challenge. (But of course, I know that with the Roman headstart, the game is definitely easier).

    Regarding territorial politics in Europe: The Europeans posed little problems after the 16th century: Russia, Poland and Austria were infighting even though they all claimed I were their worst enemy. When I vassalized Hamburg-Austria after razing Berlin (I was trying to cripple the Prussians preemptively), they croaked within a few turns, and Swedish Vikings re-emerged. With Berlin gone, Poland founded Wrocwaw. Then of course, the Netherlands spawned and caused a horrible famine in Cologne and Paris. After their grace period I razed Amsterdam as well and thus banished them to South Africa. A few turns later, Poland also kicked the bucket and Austria re-emerged! This turned out to be a great turn of events, because Austrian Krakow+Wrocwaw coexisted peacefully with Prussian Berlin+Danzig.
    And by accident I found out a great way to sabotage the emerging Russia: Right when they were on the finishing line to a technology, having a spy in their city and flip their religion to protestantism when they have already four religions loosely spread in their empire, with Orthodoxy dominant of course: At first I was surprised on the effect, but really I shouldn't: Russia collapsed to core, recovered long enough to switch back to Orthodoxy, then collapsed completely. Going to use that strategy as Prussia eventually.

    Colonial matters: When I finally finished the Trade Company in London, I was able to buy Saigon. That piece of coast was particularly bad, but I shipped an army there to claim French Indochina from the Thais (Sugar, Banana, Tea and stuff). Buying resources from the other civs was basically impossible. China wanted four surplus resources plus 279 gold/turn for Rice or Silk; the Mughals demanded the same for Incense... All I could do was sell a few surplus resources for very little gold/turn. Even my loyal and happy vassal Joao was extremely unreasonable about his sugar, and as he was my bestest friend in the world, I didn't want to force the matter. So, in 1630 I had conquered Bangkok and Hanoi. (That very same turn, I also DoWed the Netherlands.) For SOME reason, I couldn't build slave plantages in French Indochina, so I had to settle the three slaves I had brought in the three cities. There was a Thai Independece movement that destroyed my colony, but during the Thai grace period I shipped enough troops down there and recaptured their cities. Though, my administrative center in Bangkok was gone.
    Spoiler Uncooperative Friends. :
    Civ4ScreenShot0039.JPG
    But at least, my subjects do exactly what they are named for:
    Civ4ScreenShot0041_Eiffel.jpg
     
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  10. Enyavar

    Enyavar Chieftain

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    Meanwhile, in North America: I was settling slowly but steady, fighting the Natives and enslaving them. In the ~10 cities I had two slaves on average, plus a few slave plantages. I had been very doubtful about this slavery concept, but all in all I think even the ones I bought from Kongo, were worth it.
    Okay, the first Congress had gifted me the northernmost Aztek city, and a dozen turns later these bloodthirsty catholics were gone. Darn, that hadn't been my plan, so now I had to prevent the emergence of a full fledged Mexiko. They'd flip several cities including Reine d'Anges (LA), as soon as they would emerge in 1815, am I right? So I took Mexiko City, laid siege to the remaining independent cities, then razed them. It wasn't a high priority and I had a long deadline for that, so no problem. I was, however, a tiny bit worried about the emerging USA, scheduled for 1775.

    Spoiler France in 1700 AD: :
    Western France: Civ4ScreenShot0046.JPG Civ4ScreenShot0047.JPG
    Northern France: Civ4ScreenShot0048.JPG
    Southern France: Civ4ScreenShot0049.JPG Civ4ScreenShot0050.JPG
    Eastern France: Civ4ScreenShot0051.JPG

    I'm not posting my 1800 France, because there is no fun showing off. You know what I mean, right?


    Right I was about 'Murica. Washington and me were off to a great start, I gifted him my map on the first turn, we opened borders, and he was pleased from the get-go.

    Just a few turns later, in the last congress before I built the UN (four turns later!), America demanded Nouvelle-Orleans, and got it with support from resurrected Portugal/Austria as well as from original Japan. Trusting on my defense agreements with Pakistan and Germany, I refused, and look at this, World War. Turns out that on my tech level this was a curbstomp war, I had Portugal and Austria on their knees 2 turns later, America another 2 turns later.
    (Edit: I actually promoted all the legions in Western France that had tirelessly built roads, to Infantry. After all, I there were no more roman roads to build, and even the most important railways were laid.)
    Spoiler Victory in World War: :
    Civ4ScreenShot0056.JPG Civ4ScreenShot0060.JPG


    Spoiler The other victory, as well. Just an afterthought. :

    Note that the year is 1690. Civ4ScreenShot0044.JPG
    And the best of my cities right before I won. Civ4ScreenShot0061.JPG


    Wait, had I actually worried about emerging Mexico???
     
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2018
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  11. HighFunctioningAlcoholic

    HighFunctioningAlcoholic Chieftain

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    I've heard Extenze adds a couple inches.
     
  12. Enyavar

    Enyavar Chieftain

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    Nope, I think that claim is bogus.

    Seriously,
    In this Game Guide section, I think the goal is to post playthroughs so that people can either see how other players go at a task and solve it. (Or not, see my recent rants about Congo, Egypt, Rome, Babylon, which I also freely shared...). And this is the thread about France, so I'm posting my game here. You are free to upload a more "honest" approach without precursor-civ powergaming.
    I'm focusing on Normal Monarch in the 1.15 release and have discovered that I usually need a headstart. Certainly, my France had its pole position a lot closer to the finishing line. So what?
     
  13. Orbii

    Orbii Chieftain

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    So to show that France is not exactly a struggle, I figured I'd post some bits from the ~1h France playthrough I did. This is on the latest Git revision (develop branch, aka no wonders expansion), on Monarch/Normal, from the 600 AD scenario. I used WB exactly once: I moved a worker the wrong way at the end of a turn and didn't want to reload the entire turn just to move him properly. No save scumming for battles or for Great People. I've attached the save below at what I would consider a 'finished game', in the sense that it simply needs to be played out for the UHV to complete. I have no doubts at the point in the save that the UHV will be any challenge at all; it's simply routine to play out the next 500ish years. If you think the France in my posted save cannot clear the UHV, feel free to play it through. I just don't feel like doing the rest since I have done it before and settling North America and conquering Europe at this point is a glorified 'next turn' experience. As you can see in the tech screencap, I have a 'clear' tech lead minus HRE, who are doomed to obscurity in 1700, and am stable.

    Compared to Enyavar's playthrough, I think the major gameplay changes have been the limited resources effects and the addition of the Turks civ. The latter change is inconsequential and the limited resources effects makes the game harder at the end game. If you scroll up to my comment earlier in this thread, you'll see the strategy I took. The major changes to there is that turn 1 I switched to Despotism/Conquest instead of Despotism/Citizenship, and after my initial conquests (London, Rome, Barcelona, Cordoba), I switched out to Regulated Trade/Tributaries.

    Spoiler Some Screencaps :


    upload_2018-8-27_11-42-37.png

    upload_2018-8-27_11-43-1.png

    upload_2018-8-27_11-43-15.png

     

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