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How powerful are the "exploits"?

Discussion in 'Civ6 - Strategy & Tips' started by Lily_Lancer, Jun 20, 2020.

  1. tedhebert

    tedhebert Emperor

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    Strongly Disagree. It is underpriced compared to building a NEW unit. But you have already payed that full price when contructing the original unit, so I feel the price for upgrading
    is valid reward for having built it in the first place and having it survive whatever you did prior...
     
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  2. DanQuayle

    DanQuayle Prince

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    Heavy Chariot: 260 gold (65H)
    Knight: 880 gold (220H)
    Upgrade Heavy Chariot to Knight: 320 gold (equivalent to 80H)

    So you feel the 300 gold (75H) gap is a valid reward?

    I would argue that a Heavy Chariot that has had combat and experience/promotions is more valuable than a newly built unit (assuming it doesn't have an additional experience bonus linked to stable/armory).
    Also, nothing stops you from sitting on your unit and not use it in combat.

    Compare the following two approaches
    A) It is turn 76, you start to build a Heavy Chariot in a crap city with 11 production with the Maneuver policy. It takes 4 turns to build it. Turn 80, you have Feudalism/Stirrups. You upgrade your Heavy Chariot into a Knight for 320 gold.
    B) Turn 80, you have Feudalism/Stirrups, but not Chivalry yet. You start to build a Knight in your crap city with 11 production. Your Knight will be completed at T100 (20 turns later). Assuming your crap city grows and increases its production and that you reach Divine Right before T100, you might shave 4-5 turns which is still 15+ turns later than strategy A.
     
  3. Kwami

    Kwami Emperor

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    But, you're equating 1 production to 4 gold. The game doesn't always do that. Often, the game considers 1 production to be 2 gold or 3 gold. It's not consistent.
     
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  4. UWHabs

    UWHabs Deity

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    Or like in my last game. I was low on iron, so I could put one turn into building a knight, fall under 20 iron, and then spam 2-3 chariots as I rebuilt my iron supply back to 20. Then, you slot in both upgrade cards, and in the end, for 65+65+220 = 350 hammers, 40 iron, and 320 gold, I have 3 completed knights (and even better if I used a policy card to help the building), which would have cost me 60 iron and 660 production at full cost. Even ignoring the iron cost, I'm basically getting a 1:1 return on gold:hammers, which is way cheaper than any other return in the game.

    If upgrades actually were at full cost, then IMO the professional army card halving upgrades could be a "fair" benefit as mentioned above, since it would be like an improved version of the +50% production cards for most units, so that I could understand. And the fact that you need a 2nd policy card for resources makes it a little more challenging too that you can definitely run into some true cost/benefit analysis questions. But cheap upgrades are so cheap that I actually consciously alter my tech paths sometimes to delay a unit unlocking just so that I can squeeze out a couple more copies of the previous unit.
     
  5. tedhebert

    tedhebert Emperor

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    ok @DanQuayle and @UWHabs, I have to agree that it's too low atm... but making it full price or banning it ? no... I like the fact that your units will not fall down the garbage bin when you advance in the eras, and i'm 100% positive almost everyone would call it a horrendous design if that happened

    I agree that stalling research in order to build obsolete units means it's too low... i think there's room to find a good number to fix this
     
  6. Minou

    Minou Prince

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    Yes, in DanQuayle's example the difference is really 115H if you use Professional Army. You also get the major advantage of speed - it's quite possible to upgrade a dozen Knights with gold on the turn you hit Stirrups, whereas it would be extremely difficult to chop that many (you would need multiple Builders in each chop city even with Chivalry, which in all likelihood would several turns down the road).

    It is impossible to set a precise conversion rate for hammers to gold, because gold can be more useful if you need something immediately or in a city with no production. On the other hand, there are things you can't buy with gold like Districts. The real issue though is pillaging. Pillage a few mines with your Chariots you can upgrade them all to Knights with that gold.

    It would probably make sense for gold cost of upgrade to be about twice as much, or even better lowering the production cost of late game units while keeping the gold cost for upgrade the same. Even then, I doubt fast players would build many units past Horsemen with production. It's just so much better to upgrade your promoted Horseman that's already at the front lines instantly than it is to spend X turns building a Cavalry in your core and then moving it to the war zone.
     
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  7. DanQuayle

    DanQuayle Prince

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    Yes, but all gold purchases are done at the 1 production to 4 gold exchange rate.
    Yields from terrain and city-states suggest a 1 production to 2 gold exchange rate, but these are income sources, not expenses.
    You can attribute this discrepancy to the added flexibility of gold (global vs local resource) and the ability to store it (which is impossible with production).
    Exceptions to this rule are Democracy (-15%) and Ngazargamu (-20% per encampment buildings)

    Furthermore, gold purchases are limited to city centers/encampments.
    However, you can upgrade your military units anywhere in allied territory including a city-state you are suzerain of at the far side of the world.

    Further reading:
    https://forums.civfanatics.com/threads/what-is-the-true-value-of-gold.646462/
     
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  8. Casualty of war

    Casualty of war Prince

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    Ideally you should be able to "chop" a unit for a Production boost towards an upgraded one that retains any Promotions. But I'm sure whatever calculation they came up with to make that happen would be able to be exploited also. Whatever the rules, people are going to find the loopholes.

    There's still military wandering around active with titles and names earned in the Renaissance. The upgrade path should remain.
     
  9. Pietato

    Pietato Emperor

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    The AI is bad at war, so fighting them is clearly an exploit as well.
     
  10. AntSou

    AntSou Emperor

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    A couple of things come to mind:

    - Make upgrades more expensive and it might be preferable to just delete your old units and buy new ones since the new units will take advantage of the +25%/+75% experience bonuses from encampments, making your early units with promotions less consequential.

    - Cheap upgrades keep warfare fun and fluid and with units appropriate to the game era.

    - The opportunity costs of building early military units such as the heavy chariot are higher than that of building a Knight, since by then you'll have a more specialised Empire. In the early game, everything is getting in the way of building settlers. That heavy chariot cost you growth. It was 65 prod + the chance for a speedier settler and more land. The price is higher than what the tag says imo.
     
  11. DanQuayle

    DanQuayle Prince

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    I have no problem with disbanding old obsolete units. In fact, I think it should be more common place in a balanced state. You either enjoyed the added benefit of defense or attack for 30-40 turns. The unit served its purpose.
    Personally, I think upgrading old units should be on par with buying a new unit (which is not the case now as explained before). Maybe add a small premium of +30 gold (for the added flexibility). It is currently set at +10 gold.
    You can always make corps to give your old units the new experience bonuses.

    Well, it certainly does make it easier for the human player.
    Hard building just delays everything by about 10-20 turns.
    If anything, my military units are nearly always too advanced for the current world era.

    Indeed, in my opinion aggressive peaceful expansion should be balanced by investments in military units for defense.
     
  12. leandrombraz

    leandrombraz Emperor

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    I think everyone should try to consider units upgrade from the perspective of players that lose units more often. For experienced players, it's easy to keep most, if not all units that you build early and keep upgrading it, so for us it make sense to see it as a choice (upgrade vs hard build), an unbalanced one at that. For a player that lose units more often, hard building isn't a choice and getting to upgrade some leveled up units cheap is a reward for keeping them alive. If they get to the other side of a war with a lot of units intact, then they get to have a powerful army that doesn't take a lot to keep upgraded and ready to go.

    I think the whole discussion is way too based on the assumption that players don't lose units, that they just keep surviving and upgrading units. That isn't true for everyone. It probably isn't true for the majority of Civ VI players.
     
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  13. Lily_Lancer

    Lily_Lancer Deity

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    Gold mainly comes from pillage, harvest, neighborhoods and trading with AIs. Given all these banned, gold becomes precious. In fact in PVP where you cannot trade with AIs and pillaging being limited, gold is already in short, nobody will buy 1 prod with 4 gold, 1 gold more likely worth ~1 prod in PVP actually.
     
  14. yung.carl.jung

    yung.carl.jung Hey Bird! I'm Morose & Lugubrious

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    nowadays everything is an exploit, innit? building more than 4 cities is an exploit. taking enemy cities is an exploit. building a campus is an exploit. it's okay if you dislike pillaging. don't call it an exploit, that's just a misnomer. words have meanings.

    interestingly enough a lot of mechanics do feel like exploits, but are never mentioned as such. like friendship-locking for example, which makes even Deity games completely trivial.


    Not really an exploit by definition, since it is not strictly better than lump selling.

    Also, I have done a test on the same map, and selling 1 ressource for 1 GPT actually did NOT make me finish faster than selling for lump. Getting that gold instantly is just so, so crucial. Seems like this "exploit" might actually be worse than lump selling in some situations, which makes it strictly not an exploit imo.

    It is definitely a bug though, zero doubt about that.

    no, I don't think so. gold is still much less efficient, so this makes absolutely zero sense mathematically. gold being hard to come by does not make it more efficient.

    if you consider it an exploit, then just don't exploit? just finish those neighborhoods in your games. I really don't see the problem. We should also consider that this is working as intended, even though it is somewhat unlikely. I think the way it is working currently is absolutely fine.

    Fully agree. They are not real exploits as in they have very real, tangible opportunity cost!
     
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2020
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  15. AntSou

    AntSou Emperor

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    This adds no gameplay value whatsoever. It's just poor game design and an extra hurdle for the AI to manage.

    How so? The human player isn't playing in a vaccuum. The AI would have no idea what to do with your proposed approach, and that would make it easier for the human player.

    I don't understand the point of this radical approach to game balance where everything, including fun (which is the whole point of playing in the first place) must bow to it.

    The only thing you should be hard building for 20 turns are wonders.

    I don't think you're putting much consideration to any of your suggestions. Everything you suggested has consequences elsewhere in the game yet you speak as if you could isolate them.

    We're 4 years into the game. Upgrades work as intended. It's not an exploit, it's by design. You wish the design were different, but at this stage that belongs in a Civ 7 thread, not in an exploits thread.
     
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  16. Lily_Lancer

    Lily_Lancer Deity

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    Well, pls look at my other thread about trading diplo favors. Same for resources, the problem is not only that you can sell them for 1 GPT, is that you can buy them for less than 1 GPT, so you're basically earning money while paying nothing. And the process can be cycled, resulting in you getting everything as soon as you meet an AI.

    How comes using that don't give you a better finish time?
     
  17. GrumboMumbo

    GrumboMumbo Warlord

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    I have to agree with Lily_Lancer on this one, if you are able to take all the AI's gold for nothing, that sounds very broken to me. I would put this in a similar vein to the pantheon exploit, I think you just have to ban this kind of trading for your own enjoyment. Although I understand that people who play GOTM will be annoyed at stuff like this, because to be competitive, you would need to use these exploits to stay at pace with others. Also this does ruin AI/multiplayer games, when you have only a few players and the rest of the slots filled with AI (this is the main way I play and I am lucky none of my friends would stoop that low....I don't think)
     
  18. yung.carl.jung

    yung.carl.jung Hey Bird! I'm Morose & Lugubrious

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    I don't use the bug you posted where you buy and then resell. honestly, I ain't got time for this ****. in my game I simply tested selling strategics/diplo/luxes for lump sump vs selling one for 1 GPT. I did not test the specific bug you are referring to, and frankly, even now that I know about it I won't be using it.

    there are many reasons why lump sump can be superior or why trading 1 X for 1 GPT can be worse.

    1. crippling the AI economy also means crippling their development, so the AIs economy in the future is damaged, hence "abusing" this mechanic means you will get less possible trade gold (!) in the future
    2. in fact with selling 1 strategic/diplo for 1 GPT you will not just hinder their development, but actually have them go in the negative. often times they do not get out of the negative for the rest of the game. it also means their units dissolve, they often have trouble with barbs as a result, crippling them even further. it is a negative snowball.
    3. lump sump is better than GPT, because lump sump means snowballing sooner. 30 gold is always preferable to 1 GPT, but sometimes even 15 or 20 gold might be preferable to 1 GPT. I want the gold now, not in 25 turns.
    4. trading for GPT instead of lump gold can be very bad if an AI declares on you, or if you want to declare on an AI. it can also be strictly OP if you sell your own GPT, but that is yet another mechanic which we are not discussing here.
    5. trading strategics for GPT can make your game crash and corrupt your savefiles (not really efficiency related, but a general concern)

    so yeah, there are a lot of reasons why trading 1 X for 1 GPT is not always ideal, especially in the long run. in Civ 6, as weird as that sounds, you want the AI to be strong, just like you did in Civ 5 for tech steals, you need a strong AI in Civ 6 for late game deals, making Big Ben money, making Spaceport money, et cetera.

    in the end, my experiment showed me that trading 1 strategic for 1 GPT will definitely create a stronger economy, but you will have a worse early game and a slightly worse lategame. all of your rushbuys will come online a few turns later, which is crucial. buying yourself a slinger/warrior/scout on t20 or on t24 makes a huge difference. with the 1 for 1 method you will definitely have a stronger income, that is beyond doubt. you will also have fewer income spikes, which I think is more important. really, really efficient players use purchasing discounts for everything in Civ 6. that means you buy tiles almost exclusively with the policy card slotted in, you save up massive money for democracy rushbuys and you time your big ben. I understand most people do not want to do this, but this strategy works much better with lump sum in my opinion. thus, lump sum trading might actually be optimal play under certain conditions.
     
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2020
  19. UWHabs

    UWHabs Deity

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    The exploit is repeated buying/selling. So if I can sell 3 favour in 3 separate deals for 3gpt, and then buy back the 3 favour for 2gpt, and rinse and repeat, that's very clearly an exploit, since there's no way that can be the intentional design.

    Most of the other pieces mentioned here (neighbourhoods, upgrades, pillaging, etc...) as a poster listed above wouldn't really be exploits, but they're simply heavily unbalanced features.
     
  20. DanQuayle

    DanQuayle Prince

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    Yes exactly. I couldn't have summarized it better.

    In my view, gold upgrade of military units is similarly as heavily unbalanced as these other mechanics.
    Furthermore, you can tangibly and mathematically demonstrate it as I have earlier while the other mechanics are much less precisely quantifiable.

    So my question is: Why not ban gold upgrade of units, but ban the others?

    @Lily_Lancer can play the game however he likes, but if he wishes to prove anything (as it seems to be his aim) I simply suggest that he also refrains to upgrade units with gold or use a mod that doubles unit upgrade costs.
    Also, as @Victoria pointed out you really need to replay the same map at least thrice to begin to prove anything...
     

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