How to best capitalize on a Religious Monopoly?

Discussion in 'Civ4 - General Discussions' started by thelibra, Aug 20, 2008.

  1. thelibra

    thelibra Future World Dictator

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    This question is for all you really effective religion players out there. Religion in civ has been one of my 3 biggest weaknesses, so I've been focusing on it a lot lately to learn how to play it more effectively.

    Well, I just decided to try something weird my most recent game, and go for a monopoly on all Religions. Even more to the point, though, all but 2 of them have been founded in the same city, and in that same city, by 850 BC. I've got the Oracle and Stonehenge, and playing Ghandi, so I should be pumping out Great Priests right and left pretty soon.

    I'm not sure how I did it, actually, but about the time I started building the Oracle, I already had Buddhism, Hinduism, and Judaism, and my next tech choice while building the Oracle included either Confucianism at 30-something turns, or Christianity at 50-something turns. So I started researching Confucianism, score Christianity with the Oracle free tech, and now I'm staring down the barrel of either a 48-turn Taoism, or an even longer stretch to Islam.

    Now, here's the first question... How do I grab the last two religions without completely gimping the rest of my game this round?

    Philosophy -> Liberalism -+-> Gunpowder freebie, then pwn the neighbors?

    My current situation is: Shuffle Map, Standard size, Monarch difficulty. I have one city to my name with 4 religions founded in it, Ghandi, Stonehenge, and the Oracle, so GPs won't be a problem to churn out. The city should end up VERY happy, but only has one resource (silver), and to keep the population growing, I've had to turn every riverside tile into a farm (that and it was the only improvement tech I had since I was going for religions).

    Next question... How do I best capitalize on a religious monopoly with Ghandi? The obvious choice to me would normally be "Free Religion", but then I'd miss out on the bonus GP points I could get with Pacifism. And yet, if I REALLY wanted to completely control the religious world, it seems that Theocracy would be the best bet. This might also tie well into my "Taoism, Liberalism-> Gunpowder = pwnage" idea, as I'd be pumping out very experienced gunpowder units, and my Spiritual trait would allow me the quick switch over to like Police State and Vassalage for war times.

    Or is there some even better way to utilize my impending religious monopoly?
     
  2. TheDS

    TheDS Regular Riot

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    Check my sig.
     
  3. TheDS

    TheDS Regular Riot

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    Your religions will all spread. The closest thing you can do to control what people switch to is to send them missionaries and also build the AP (Apostolic Palace) while under your chosen state religion. This gives them incentive to at least spread your chosen religion. (Not that you can't hit them with requests or spies too.)

    Having monopoly can be leveraged in any way you want. If you're real careful and a little lucky, you can snag a Religious victory. Failing that, if you want Culture, go Free Religion. If you want Domination, pick a state religion and build the other religious Wonders for the free gold+science+hammers+culture. Spaceship will work either way.

    Be sure to found the Shrines in your capital first before the other two, and aggressively spread ALL your religions to your science cities and build Monasteries. AIs going FR should keep you in money.

    You'll have to build Wall Street in your capital, and you may as well do a few Wonders and NE (National Epic) there too. Shrines generate GPPs, no sense wasting them. You don't want your capital to be a major production city, because using it as your GP farm - which synergizes with Wall Street - means you can't work the land, so move your capital. Not critical to do this - I didn't move mine in either game, but I could see the counter-productivity, especially when using Bureaucracy.

    You're going to need to do some religion spreading. The more you do, the more free gold you get from your Shrines, but you want to do it so you can build Temples and Cathedrals, which will let you steal cities that were founded too close. It also builds up your cultural defenses and makes it take longer for invading armies to get through.

    You should make a ton of extra money. Funnel that into rushing buildings and keeping your units upgraded and keeping your science slider high, but also use some for espionage to pick up techs you'll inevitably miss. Makes it easy to find enemy weak points when you can see in his cities too. I ran my second game at 0% gold for a couple hundred turns and still made around 200+ gpt average that whole time. (Corps eventually messed that up, but I didn't funnel enough extra citizens into Merchants to cover it.)

    If you want to go for Domination/Conquest, you will need to devote production to building units. You should have vastly superior units quickly enough, but you've still got to build them and then carry them, production which could be used for catapulting you to Alpha Centauri, but it all depends on what you feel like doing.
     
  4. Genv [FP]

    Genv [FP] Website Moron

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    Just Run theocracy.
     
  5. GooglyBoogly

    GooglyBoogly Freakamongus

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    Theocracy still wont give you a monopoly of ALL religions - your state religion will still spread. As far as I know, for an unmodded game the only way to completely prevent religious spread is to never connect your trade network to any cities of another civ

    Edit: I guess It might work if you go theocracy while running no state religion, but I have never attempted this, could someone with more free time on their hands want to test the idea?
     
  6. Morgrad

    Morgrad Attack Rodent

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    Did you tailor-pick your opponents, or just get lucky? I rarely go for one of the first two religions on Monarch because you're unlikely to get either - but you got both. In my experience, that means *no one* started with Mysticism but you.

    In any case, focus on just one religion, spread it like crazy, build a shrine and the religious wonders and win the victory of your choice with a massive tech advantage.

    As far as completing your monopoly, run scientists, bulb Philosophy while researching other things, then switch back to prophets for your shrine and/or partial bulb of Divine Right.

    Make sure you build the AP! +4 hammers per city is amazing...
     
  7. caketastydelish

    caketastydelish Deity

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    Have theocracy, build as many religous buildings as possible, and then get the Spiral Mineret. Thank me later.
     
  8. Joshua368

    Joshua368 Warmongering builder

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    By the way, don't take gunpowder free from liberalism. It's so cheap that it's a waste, you'd be better off going with Nationalism, Printing Press or Astronomy. (Or if you have a large tech lead, it can be a nice strategy to learn liberalism all up till one turn and then store it until someone else starts threatening it, so you can freebie a bigger tech like replaceable parts or assembly line)

    So yeah, after liberalism just tech gunpowder normally, it shouldn't take too long. As long as you beelined education you should still get it before most of the AIs, unless one of them took the guilds route.
     
  9. Virtual Alex

    Virtual Alex King

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    You don't need to beeline for Divine Right and Philosophy to get those religions. I think you can pick up some other techs in between. Grab christianity, and then work on some backfill.
     
  10. Belisar

    Belisar Defender of Byzanz

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    See the drawbacks of your strategy ;)
    If you play it as a handicap game, fine, but otherwise I wouldn't recommend it.
     
  11. eewallace

    eewallace King

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    Trying for all of the religions doesn't seem like a particularly good strategy, not to mention not possible above the lowest levels, I wouldn't think. I have had some pretty good games where I started with mysticism and ended up with about 4 of the religions and controlled all religions on my continent. This can be useful in fostering wars if, for example, you spread one of the religions deliberately to one civ and a different one to its neighbor. Mostly, though, I've found multiple religions handly for running a religion-based economy. State-based religion, shrines and cathedrals, plus spiral minaret and you will be rolling in cash.
     
  12. Joshua368

    Joshua368 Warmongering builder

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    Getting all the religions is a really awful strategy, or getting an early religion without starting with mysticism. You should really only do it in special games where you want a special extra challenge, because it puts you at a really bad disadvantage early on.
     
  13. Genv [FP]

    Genv [FP] Website Moron

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    I don't think it's possible to get both Hindu and Budhi with the BTS AI playing against you..
     
  14. TheDS

    TheDS Regular Riot

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    You wouldn't think it would be - you get a slow start - but you more than make up for it later. My second grab-'em-all saw the highest 0% gpt I've ever had: the average for around 200 turns was around 250 gpt with gold slider at 0%. That was from Astronomy until I pushed Sushi AND Creative AND CivJewel into too many cities. Further details are in the obvious link posted in my sig.
     

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