How many settlers do you build pre-government plaza?

Brutus2

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Previously I was a believer of the "8-10 cities by turn 100" as a general rule of thumb but recently I have been sort of on auto-pilot with only building one settler and then waiting until my second city can build the government plaza and ancestral hall (sometimes this has to wait for pop 4 after building another Holy Site first) and put the two governor points from them into the second Magnus promotion for no population loss. If I found a Religion I also usually grab Religious Colonization and Jesuit Education. I guess I really like having each new city start with a free builder and religion in place (so I don't have to waste Faith on spreading my religion to my own cities to make use of Jesuit Education) and all with no population loss so I can continue placing new districts.

Now this all works fine and usually doesn't stop me from getting 8-10 cities or more eventually but not as quickly as I used to and the AI often has 4-6 cities when I still have two (playing on Emperor or above).

So my question is, how do you approach early expansion? Should I be building more Settlers in the capital? Growth is limited by housing anyway so maybe I should not be so obsessed with not losing population?
 

iammaxhailme

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I generally rush Magnus's no-pop settler promotion before making any settlers. After that I may make one or two, but sometimes none if I think I'm going to get a golden age classical + have a lot of faith to buy lots of settlers.

If I think I'm going to take Ancestral Hall (which I almost always do) I try to wait until I have that unless my surrounding area is crowded. I like to reduce the number of civs on the map (usually play on huge 12 civ maps with only 8 civs, on king or emperor) so I can get away with this. if I was playing with the "Correct" number of civs for my map size, I wouldn't wait.
 
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A lot depends on how much pressure there is on me to fill available space. If I have plenty of space and the AI isn't forward settling me, ideally I will only build 1 or 2 settlers out of my capital then get up the government plaza. But I've had games where I settled ALL my own (meaning ones I built settlers for) cities without any government district. Because of the strength of Pingala, I find myself prioritizing government district more in GS than I did in R&F.
 

Brutus2

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I generally rush Magnus's no-pop settler promotion before making any settlers. After that I may make one or two, but sometimes none if I think I'm going to get a golden age classical + have a lot of faith to buy lots of settlers.

If I think I'm going to take Ancestral Hall (which I almost always do) I try to wait until I have that unless my surrounding area is crowded. I like to reduce the number of civs on the map (usually play on huge 12 civ maps with only 8 civs, on king or emperor) so I can get away with this. if I was playing with the "Correct" number of civs for my map size, I wouldn't wait.

Since the governor changes in GS, I have been using the first governor points for Pingalla and using the points you get from building the plaza and tier 1 building for Magnus since I won't really start producing settlers until those things are built anyway. What I'm wondering is if I should maybe be spending the first points on Magnus and building/chopping more settlers in the capital and then maybe moving him over to the second city once the ancestral hall is built. I generally prefer making the second city pump out settlers so the capital can focus on units, builders, trader, shrine/prayers, wonders, ect.
 

riddleofsteel

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This is a great topic, because this has been something that's been bugging me in my recent games. I feel that not only is map generation worse since GS, but my neighbors are too close even on large maps. I've been playing on emperor but the AI then starts with another settler. I feel like I'm being forced into shooting out settlers just to stake claims to nearly land, even if it isn't very good land. So, by doing that WAY before I have anything meaningful accomplished means I might get three or four max cities and even by then my neighbors are right up under my nose. And since I pulled out all the stops just to do that, I have like zero army, no eurekas or inspirations to speak of, and three or four naked cities that aren't doing anything. I've been wanting to readjust my strategy but I think I'll only end up with one city if I do that.
 

Starwars

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I will usually have one or two additional cities before the government plaza and ancestral hall are built, but it really depends on how the area around me looks and how I plan on playing. If there is space around me then yeah, that's usually what I do. But of course is space is really tight then I might just get as many settlers out as I can, or get the Warlord's throne going instead. It's rare that I get the other building (name escapes me at the moment).

I also don't make that much use of Magnus' ability to not lose population when getting settlers. I might do it if I do have a particularly food poor area but usually I just find myself hitting the housing cap fairly quickly anyway. But yeah, that all depends.
 

Red_warning

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The question is if you are saving much production by withholding your city settling just to get the boosts the plaza provides, because every non-settled city is a lost opportunity for production, science, income etc.
 

Noble Zarkon

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I guess I really like having each new city start with a free builder and religion in place
That's my style as well as well but I never play higher than King so it's a bit easier.
 
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chazzycat

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I have never considered waiting that long to build settlers. Too much risk the good spots will be taken. I build one early, wait for colonization/early empire and then crank out a few to build my core. I would use the gov't plaza building for a second wave of expansion later instead, if appropriate. If there are no open land at that point then I'll build one of the other gov't buildings instead.
 

Karmah

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like most people here ,it's mostly dictated by the game itself and the pressure I get to settle. I have had games where I settled all after the GP and the opposite is true but those are extreme case. In general , I settle two cities before GP, and as much as I can after ,at least 6.
 

Phoenix1595

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Generally, I try very hard to get Ancestral Hall up and running as soon as possible, because it makes city building so much easier with the perks. That said, I know the first few dozen turns are crucial to getting as many settlers up as possible to beat AI to the great spots.

Prior to AH, I always build at least one settler and camp out by enemy capitals when I see they are at 3 pop and can produce a settler. In prior civ games, I would never be as brazen as to steal settlers so early in the game, but the pressure is on to a) stop the AI from settling to close to your intended growth area, and b) have enough settlers to seize that growth area early even with the production limitations of Civ6 (ergo, settler stealing). So, by the time AH rolls around, I have four or five fairly strong cities up and running, and AH can help fast track the typically 6-7 more I will create.

Liang is still helpful for an AH strategy as well, since she has one of the esrlier district building boosts that help get your GC up faster.
 

kb27787

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The question is if you are saving much production by withholding your city settling just to get the boosts the plaza provides, because every non-settled city is a lost opportunity for production, science, income etc.

You get it back in the form of a free builder with ancestral hall. Moreover getting to political philosophy quicker means you have more cards faster (so, take Ping +1 culture promotion rather than Magnus) which is a net gain of some production as well.

I usually do just 0-1... 1 if I want first dark age because +2/2 on internal route card is great and helps you build ancestral hall faster.
 

SammyKhalifa

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At first I was going AH after first settler all the time--I don't know if I have changed or the game has but lately it hasn't been working out that way. I seems like if I'm waiting for AH then I'm waiting too long to settle.

Are people building the GP first or getting a Campus or whatever for the boost?
 

Onii-chan

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Depends on the game of course but usually I end up building one fairly early settler and then building the Government Plaza in my 2nd city as its first district (capital building holy site or campus instead), and then I might get another settler with Colonization while that city starts working on Ancestral Hall (assuming I'm going for that one but it's my most common pick). Then once that's up I might crank out a bunch more settlers until I feel like all the nearby must-grab spots are settled

So to answer the question, always at least one settler before the Plaza, sometimes two, but never 3+


PS: In R&F I often went for Magnus with the no population loss from settler production promotion asap and then I was a bit more inclined to spam settlers early. In GS I pretty much always go Pingala first though for the +science/culture from citizens promotion; it almost doubles your output in the early game so it's too good to ignore
 

Red_warning

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You get it back in the form of a free builder with ancestral hall. Moreover getting to political philosophy quicker means you have more cards faster (so, take Ping +1 culture promotion rather than Magnus) which is a net gain of some production as well.

I usually do just 0-1... 1 if I want first dark age because +2/2 on internal route card is great and helps you build ancestral hall faster.

It can probably be calculated when it makes sense to wait for the plaza to be built and when it benefits your more to just churn out settlers. Then there is the fact that you got to compete for space with the other civs, and the competition gets fiercer the higher difficulty you play on.
 

Tabarnak

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Usually after 3,4 or 5 cities settled. And built in capital or 2nd city. Depends of map.
 
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I always build 2 settlers in the cap, rarely a third prior to the Gov plaza. I typically beeline Early empire first to have Magnus established along with my borders enforced and Colonization card on hand. I typically start my settler spam turn 50-60.
 
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Almost always pump out a Settler fairly early, just so I have a second city up to relieve my Capital. Whether I build more settlers, like most of the posters here, depends on the situation, but usually no more than one more before I get Magnus promoted and the GP/AH combination built. After that, my first Golden Age will be designed to allow quick build/religious buy of Settlers and I expand like crazy, so as to be as large or much larger than my neighbors before they can start promoting units and get dangerous.
I would estimate, though, that at least 80% or more of my total Settlers in a game are bought cheap with Gold or Religion, built with no Pop loss (Magus) or stolen. Actually straight forward building a Settler is just something I only do early in the game, and then only once or twice.
 
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