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How to deal with pop unhealthiness?

Discussion in 'Civ4 - General Discussions' started by stebbinsd, Jul 8, 2014.

  1. stebbinsd

    stebbinsd Chieftain

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    As my cities' populations go up, so too do their unhealthiness and unhappiness. Cities that are big enough to work all the tiles in my big fat cross are going to be either too sick, or too unhappy, to work them properly.

    Now, with unhappiness, I've pretty much got that problem covered: I'll just get hereditary rule, and then spam cheap military units. Meanwhile, my old club-swinging warriors would simply be moved back to the city when they become obsolete, rather than paying the money to upgrade them.

    But, there's nothing I can spam - even expensive stuff - that can help with the unhealthiness.

    Sure, there's the National Park, but that doesn't come until much later in the game, and only works for one city.

    Any suggestions?
     
  2. BlackArc

    BlackArc Chieftain

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    Actually, spamming military units to deal with unhappiness is a very inefficient and costly way of dealing with unhappiness.

    Ideally, you should only have 1 military unit per city. You should only have extra units if you plan to invade another's civ's territory, or if you are near a civ that's likely to invade you, in which case your stacks or stack should be stationed on the city/cities bordering that civ and not divided among all your cities.

    Dealing with both unhappiness and unhealthiness is best done by trading resources with other civs. Trading happiness resources should take priority over health resources, but if you have enough extra resources to trade you can go for both. If you have extra military resources lying around, like horses, copper, ivory, iron, etc other civs often trade you more than one resource for it. It's very worthwhile to do that, just make sure that civ won't turn around and use that resource against you.

    You can also deal with anger by trading/teching Drama and Music. With Music you get a culture bar that raises the amount of happiness in each city at 10% intervals, and with Drama you get access to theaters, which increases the amount of happiness you get per every 10% you raise the culture bar. They're especially useful for keeping war weariness down.

    ---
     
  3. stebbinsd

    stebbinsd Chieftain

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    Why do you say that? It seems to work just fine for me.

    But doesn't that still only have a finite limit? Identical health sources do not stack (as I learned in this thread, so even if I use foreign trade to obtain every food resource in the game, there's only fourteen of them in the game for me to get.

    I told you, I'm looking for advice on dealing with health, not happiness. I have a plan for dealing with happiness. It may not be YOUR plan, but then again, Civ4 is a "strategy" game, right?

    So please, stick to the questions I'm asking.
     
  4. BlackArc

    BlackArc Chieftain

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    The issue is, you're dealing with happiness using techniques that work on much lower difficulty levels. The cost of keeping a military around increases substantially as you go up the difficulty levels and will weaken you economically. You may not need that piece of advice now, but if you plan to play and win above what you do now, it's something you'll have to do and it is a piece of advice that always gets brought up when a new player mentions building multiple units per city without plans to use them for war. Welcome to Standard Advice 101.

    And yes, you only get a finite amount of health per health resource. Though like I wrote, unhappiness is a much more serious issue than unhealthiness. Trading a few healthiness resources is usually enough to effectively deal with the problem, you don't need to collect them all. You should also chop down jungle ASAP, as jungled tiles cause unhealthiness. Alternatively, you can just whip in an aqueduct if it becomes a very serious issue, though I rarely use those, or get the Hanging Gardens World Wonder.

    ---
     
  5. Fippy

    Fippy Mycro Junkie Queen

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    Beeline Medicine, mostly for Environmentalism it's rather popular.
     
  6. pandamancer

    pandamancer Prince

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    Play leaders with expansive trait or with health bonus UU. Chop off jungles.

    In late game, choose hydro/nuclear plants over coal or build the Three Gorges Dam. After that give away your coal
     
  7. misterfilmgeek

    misterfilmgeek Warlord

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    This is your main problem. You almost never want to have your cities working all 21 tiles in the BFC (note the "almost"). You generally want overlap with other cities as that is the most efficient way to place cities. Unhealthiness can be overcome by trading for resources, as noted above, granaries (a must-build), and other buildings like Aqueduct, Harbor, Grocer, etc..., or by more food. The extra buildings should not be built solely to deal with Unhealthiness - there should always be a better reason to build them. As for food, if you have a decent surplus, then ignore the Unhealthiness until you max out - it doesn't hurt you in any way except for the loss of one food per.

    As far as you not wanting advice about Unhappiness (or anything, really), you should change your stance on that. If more experienced players offer you advice, you should at the very least consider it, and usually try it out. In this case, BlackArc is exactly right: what you are doing is a horrible waste of hammers. Early in the game when you first get Hereditary Rule it's OK to use a couple units per city to help it grow, but anything more than that is usually a waste of hammers. There is always something better to do with them, like creating siege and attacking units so you can wipe out a neighbor and take his Health and Happy resources. Always think about winning the game, not just surviving it.

    Re: Environmentalism. Since when is it popular? State Property is better in 95% of games, and Free Market is better in the other 5% in which you use Corporations. I've never played a single game where I was even tempted to use Environmentalism.
     
  8. vandermerwe

    vandermerwe Butt of many jokes

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    Unhealthy citizens still work tiles. So a city that has enough happy citizens to work all tiles in the BFC can work all those tiles - less any specialists you assign of course. If you've so much unhealthiness that your population drops then that's obviously another thing, but generally it's not such a big deal. See below.

    You're looking for the wrong sort of answer here. The answer to unhealth isn't in how you manage cities or build queues; it's in how you manage the whole empire. You can get +11 health just from acquiring all the food resources through settling or trade, and (if you do that) another +3 for the granary which all cities should have. Building your cities alongside fresh water gives another +2. Add the starting bonus for (say) Noble and that takes you to +19. If that's not enough - and it really should be - then you can start thinking about other health-giving buildings like harbours and grocers, although they often aren't worth the :hammers:. For sure there are buildings which add unhealth too, but while forges are pretty much essential many of the others aren't worth bothering with either, at least not in all cities.

    Why should +19 be more than enough when there are 20 tiles (plus the city tile) to be worked in the BFC? Because ultimately unhealth doesn't matter all that much. A size 20 city with +19 health loses 1 food per turn. If it has a food surplus of more than 1 it still grows, just more slowly; if it has no food surplus then the population drops slowly. And that doesn't matter much either; as often as not a fall in population just eliminates the unhealth and causes the population to stabilise. It certainly doesn't matter as much as unhappiness. And growing cities to the maximum possible size isn't always the best plan anyway; for instance a modestly-sized city that isn't growing because it's running loads of specialists or working lots of high production tiles it can be much better value to your empire than a huge and increasingly sickly mega-city.
     
  9. crazyotto65

    crazyotto65 Chieftain

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    Hanging Gardens wonder.
     
  10. lymond

    lymond Rise Up! (Phoenix Style!) Moderator Hall of Fame Staff

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    No, the main issue here is the fixation on growing large cities. First of all, a little unhealthiness is a not a big issue. Unhappiness is, ofc, because unhappy citizens are not productive and cost you.

    With the exception of a couple of cities (mainly capital and possibly HE city), you do not need to grow cities that large to be successful, at least until the late game if going Space. And by then there are plenty of things (resources, buildings and techs to increase health significantly).

    Instead don't worry so much about a little unhappiness and don't worry about growing all your cities large. Use the whip for buildings and units - go to war and get more cities. Run specialists instead of growing onto unimproved tiles.

    Depending on your desired victory, you don't always need large cities. Military victories are won by abusing your cities - whipping/drafting and whatever. For Space, you grow your cities large later as you get more health bonuses from later techs. Culture only requires 3 reasonably sized cities and should not go deep in tech (Lib,Nat and PP at most), but all the other cities will be abused for temples/missionaries or starving out Great Artists.

    As I told another newer player recently - on a different subject - unhealth is probably the least of your concerns right now.
     
  11. Fippy

    Fippy Mycro Junkie Queen

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    Irony not always bites..my reaction for somebody who shows no respect, this forum does not allow more direct answers.
     
  12. traius

    traius His own worst enemy

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    Well, fippy, I know what he did, but, sooner or later you gotta let it go. We actually both came to the same conclusion (I thought he was writing a funny post too), and his reply was definitely out of proportion to the situation, but there is no point in holding a grudge over something so trivial.
     
  13. stebbinsd

    stebbinsd Chieftain

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    Because I'd like to have about ten specialists in a city. You know... because they generate great people, who add permanent buffs to my cities with no strings attached? Permanent buff to hammers, research, and an easy +6000 culture, as well as +1 food and +6 gold per turn (yeah, if I could spam great merchants, this game would be broken to hell and back, but, unfortunately, I can't).

    Now, as far as the BFC overlap is concerned, here's a picture I drew up. It's my ideal plans for a seven-city empire. where the cultural borders would overlap, but the BFCs would not, while at the same time, keeping them crunched together to reduce civic upkeep. I've color-coded the BFCs so you'll know where each BFC ends and the next begins:



    My idea (at least for end game) is that my red city could be my capital, and the center of the empire. The red, blue, and yellow cities would be my "culture" cities, where I focus my cultural buildings, wonders, and great artists in an attempt to obtain a cultural victory.

    The green city would be my commerce city. I would use it to turn 50 hammers into gold. With enough mines and workshops, with a forge and factory, that should equate to 50 gold per turn, with the occasional turn giving me 100 gold.

    The remaining cities on the side could focus on research. These are the cities where the great scientists would go (though Great Engineers would be put in the three "culture" cities, since their hammers can be used to build culture and wonders). This could help speed up my repeatedly researching of Future Tech.
     
  14. fed1943

    fed1943 Emperor

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    Steb:

    I agree, it's ideal; but your ideal cities, need an ideal map, i.e., tile wise are these cities in good
    place for food, prodution and commerce? and your empire is not that big, so how many resources
    on it? and your empire looks easy to overrun, so strong military/prodution or diplomacy?

    May be I'm just unlucky, but I never got a map where I could fit said "design" (yes, I also dreamed
    about it).
     
  15. Ghpstage

    Ghpstage Deity

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    No, settling like that is far from ideal, its basically abandoning around half of your tiles for half of the game!
    Its important to recognise that the early game is what sets you up for the rest of the game, the later game depends on a strong foundation which settling like this isn't going to give.

    Ironically the easiest solution to the OPs question about getting more health is to overlap cities. While it doesn't increase the health in a specific city, it does increase the total health in your empire, and sharing the population of an area between multiple cities keeps the per city health requirement down :p

    And yes, we are more than aware about the value of great people, high level games are heavily dependant on them. But you can run specialists in cities of any size, and across multiple cities, also settling great people is very often the worst use of their abilities. Most GP farms tend not to work many of its BFC tiles, instead they are running specialists.
     
  16. Tristan_C

    Tristan_C Emperor

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    Raising caps costs hammers (and thus everything else including tech by opportunity cost). Resources are a lot of low-cost :) :health:

    Cram the first cities to keep pops low and remove the need to raise the caps with rubbish builds. The only excuse not to build city 2 practically on top of the capital is to get copper/hoss. A quick look at something like the lonely hearts games (where players build civs in isolated starts) will show you good players displacing cities by 2, maybe 3 tiles, to work all the good tiles as soon as possible examples-
    yep
    tmit
    packed islands
     
  17. traius

    traius His own worst enemy

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    This is actually completely wrong. Ideal = best, not what gets me the most per city in the future. If this were calculus, you would be solving for the local/global maximum of each individual city (part of the function) and assuming it is the global maximum for your empire (whole function), rather than solving for the local/global maximum of the empire itself (whole function), like solving for maximum revenue and assuming it will yield maximum profit.

    If your cities overlapped more (or in this case I guess, at all), there would be a bunch of things you could do differently from now: 1, you would be able to share the best food tiles among cities whenever the city currently using it hits the happiness cap (especially in the early game where happy cap is very low); 2 you would be able to make secondary cities work cottages so that when you switch to bureaucracy your capital has all of its cottages developed for it in its fat cross; 3, you would keep your early maintenance costs lower (distance to palace would be even less if you are closer than your current "ideal" mapping); 4, it would take fewer worker turns to develop the land for your cities and connect them together by road; 5, your defensive capabilities would be improved, though admittedly this should not be near your top concern (and it should be mentioned that a tighter configuration makes the AI more likely to declare war on you, which is not good, but good diplomacy over-rides this negative anyway).
    Also, you make a very bad assumption in your ideal mapping that cities will get large enough to use those tiles. They only get large enough in the late game (when the game should already be decided), especially if you use the slavery whip (and you should use the slavery whip, though it takes practice to determine when you should do so -- this is also true of the draft, though it takes way less practice to determine when the draft should be used, as it should always be used :) ). This last factor means that there is no loss of potential output for the bulk of the game. With no loss of potential for the bulk of the game, and many gains during this same no loss-of-potential time, over-lapping is 100% the way to go.
     
  18. lymond

    lymond Rise Up! (Phoenix Style!) Moderator Hall of Fame Staff

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    yeah, that BFC diagram should be completely thrown out the window.
     
  19. traius

    traius His own worst enemy

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    Now that the ideal city site system has been debunked, let's talk other things.
    Going for culture is fine, but you're doing it very incorrectly: 1, When going for culture, you do not want great engineers or great scientists, you want great artists; 2, the culture cities themselves should be cottage (town) cities, as towns produce the most culture (when the slider is turned to culture, which is the proper way to go for cultural victory -- if you have a really heavy food city, 1 city can be an artist fueled cultural win city, but it takes a lot of artists, ie food, to match a town city's output with free speech, which is another requirement for cultural victory since it adds a +100% culture boost). Towns don't leave any/much extra food for specialists, so some other city(ies) should be producing your great artists, to use their great work ability in the town cities. And since you are using the slider to generate culture, you do not gain any more techs outside of trading which will die out. This can (and should) be started right after liberalism (the requirement for free speech), which is ages from future tech (you should never get there with a cultural victory).

    If you want a slightly safer (but not earlier) victory, you can go for a corporation-fueled cultural victory, which requires Sid's Sushi, Creative Construction, and CivJewelers (and medicine, combustion, and mass media, and a Great Merchant, Great Engineer and a Great Artist -- the engineer can be hard to spawn in time/reliably though, especially for newer players). These can produce ridiculous levels of culture, though it's not super-great, as it requires a lot of resources (which small empires don't have lots of, and big empires are much better off just trying to get even bigger).

    One last thing, you refer to one of your cities as a commerce city, but describe it having mines and farms, which makes it a hammer city. You can of course build wealth (gold) with it, but it is still a hammer city (just a nomenclature issue).
     
  20. misterfilmgeek

    misterfilmgeek Warlord

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    If there was any doubt about whether or not this guy is trolling before, this paragraph (combined with the rest of his posts) confirms that he is. Who thinks in absolute terms like 50g per turn regarding this game? He is ignoring every single post in response to his questions, probably intentionally. If it's not intentional and he just can't process the advice given to him, then he'll never understand the game well enough to win on any level above Warlord. Either way, we should just stop feeding.
     

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