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How to get better Religious diversity

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Strategy & Tips' started by Bhruic, May 21, 2008.

  1. Bhruic

    Bhruic Emperor

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    I've noticed in the games I've played recently (mostly Terra maps) that it's really hard to get a decent amount of religious diversity. I like to play with a lot of AI, just because I like having lots of different interactions. But what I've found is that the entire world usually ends up clumping around 2 religions. Every now and then one of the almost dead Civs will switch because they're down to a single city without the 2 majors, but in general, everyone has formed into one of two clumps.

    Obviously this can make diplomatic maneuvering much more difficult. There are some exceptions, but in general, the people having the same religion tend to be friends. So once "your" religion has butchered all the heathens, you are stuck with a world that loves each other. How intolerable is that? :lol: But it can be a serious hamper on plans.

    Even worse is the spread pattern. The religions tend to spread to the closer Civs first, meaning that each religious "block" tends to also be grouped by geography. In my recent game, I was completely surrounded by Civs sharing my religion. It was early game, and one of them was going to culture-steal my only Iron source, so I declared war and razed the city. Instantly, 9 more Civs declared war on me. Luckily it wasn't a huge problem, since it was early enough they didn't have large armies. But it's a great example of what can happen when you try and expand militarily - you are forced to attack a Civ that is likely to be well liked by all of their neighbours.

    So the upshot here, is does anyone have any useful advice on how to avoid this? Even being able to have a 3-way would be great (who doesn't love a 3-way? ;)). But the Civs that found the later religions either don't spread them, or can't get people to adopt them (they usually don't themselves). It makes sense that they don't, why make everyone else hate you? But it'd certainly help with diversity if some of them chose to.

    Bh
     
  2. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam Top Logic

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    It's very hard on clustered maps. The only thing I've done that has worked is founding a religion that starts with a missionary (confuc. and christianity being the most likely candidates, the latter with oracle perhaps), and spreading it intentionally to someone that does not yet possess a religion. You can still adopt one of the mains of course, but intentionally founding + spreading religion to get someone to convert themselves some enemies early has helped me a lot. Nobody likes that person, so you can even get diplo BONUS for hitting them and shaving some cities sometimes.

    Ideal scenario is proceeding to wipe that civ out and taking the land, in which case you control that original religion again and could consider the AP in it, even if you don't run the AP religion. Even if that isn't part of the plans, spreading an obscure religion quickly to people who don't have one yet can be pretty helpful.
     
  3. OTAKUjbski

    OTAKUjbski TK421

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    The only advice I have is the advice you already know: persistence.

    If you make it a point to spread [your] religion to a particular civ (typically by spreading to its larger cities first), you'll eventually make headway.

    For me, this typically means devoting one city to pumping Missionaries the whole game like we do for cities to pump military units.

    Aside from that, it's completely an uphill battle, so good luck.
     
  4. Bhruic

    Bhruic Emperor

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    Usually I don't have a religion to spread, I adopt whichever one seems the strongest. I'm more interested in what might make the AI willing to adopt a religion when it founds it. And try and get others to run it. It'd be nice, for example, to see a big Confucian block have half of its members split off to become Buddhists. But that'll only happen if someone decides to run Buddhism, which no one is willing to do, because everyone else is running Confucianism.

    And I can't ask them to switch unless I do, which isn't the "solution" I was looking for (and they'd just switch back in 10 turns anyway).

    Bh
     
  5. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam Top Logic

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    Aren't the AI's coded to prioritize the religion they have the most of? I've not seen them switch back if they carry even amounts of both religions.

    One problem is that if you spread the AI's more than 1-2 religions, it seems all but the most fanatic want FR and will always convert to that :/.
     
  6. JujuLautre

    JujuLautre Deity

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    Well, that's not an in-game thing, just a little tweak I made to the game but it goes in this direction: I give a free great prophet to the 1st at divine right.
    Reasons? Gives a little boost to divine right, gives more chances to the latest religion of all, and the great prophet is the 0only type of great people which does not have a tech giving one as freebie.
    Effect? An Ai is more likely to spread and adopt a religion if it has the shrine. And it usually build it right away ;)
     
  7. Gliese 581

    Gliese 581 Your average civ junkie

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    I don't know if this is something I've just imagined but it seems to me the AI likes to use the AP religion if feasible. That is, if it has many cities with the AP religion and many cities with another religion they will favour the AP religion. If it's true that would make it harder in BTS to get a good religious spread.
     
  8. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam Top Logic

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    Or easier. I noticed this in PYL III and it surprised me. I spread the AP religion into a friendly AI looking for a cheap diplo win, and it backfired when the AI converted (even though it had more total cities in its own religion...). I wound up having to attack that AI thanks to this mistake, although at least that was easy since the AI was the ONLY nation on the map running the religion, making it a nice, fat target in a "religious zealots" game :lol:.

    If it's true and you pick up the AP in an obscure religion, you could pretty much bait AI's into converting into that religion and murdering their diplo ratings.
     
  9. vicawoo

    vicawoo Chieftain

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    While persistence is important for setting up 3 ways, you need to appeal to the isabellas' pride and jealousy. AI's seem more inclined to convert if they founded their own religion, and I think their capital and larger cities get more weight. There's usually an entrenched 2nd party, so look for a more open minded 3rd party.
     
  10. BalbanesBeoulve

    BalbanesBeoulve Emperor

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    A huge problem is that all the religions are along the same tech path, so 1 or 2 civs end up monopolizing them all. Ok, i got polytheism, sweet. Oh, judaism is only 1 tech away, ok lets go for that. Oh, look, now christianity is 1 tech away. Lets go get that. Then divine right, etc etc. So you get into situations where Hatty or Pacal or Isabella end up founding almost all the religions, but they only spread their initial ones.

    It makes sense that all the religions techs come from one another, so you can't change that. The only thing that would fix it is to change the civ AI so that they won't want to found more than 1 religion.
     
  11. dubrown

    dubrown Prince

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    I have noticed the phenomen though I haven't really considered it a problem yet. With a pangea or even a terra map you almost always ends up with two blocks, the Buddists and the Hindus unless the same civ gets both and then you likely have a block of Jews as the other part. The only time I seem to get alot of different statereligions is when playing isolation phrone maps, Archipelago, big n small etc. After astronomy though, that tends to fade away and leave you with a few religious blocks again.

    How to get around it, I dunno. You can assign religions at gamestart but that takes away some of the charm and is no sure way to say that the AIs will stick to their religion. The only way I can think of to give it a higher probability that you get atleast 3 different major religions would be to have an isolation type map. Or you could play the religious game and get all the shrines for yourself and then spread the religions in blocks to the AI. That is certainly possible to do on the easier levels but atleast I wouldn't be able to do it at higher difficulties.
     
  12. kniteowl

    kniteowl Pirate Captain :P

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    Hmm what was the question again???... *Lost*...

    Well there was one game I played as Bodica and wanted a domination victory.

    I played Pangea and there were 4 civs left excluding me.

    Darious and his Vassal Saladin and Medmed and his Vassal Sury.

    Darius was slightly ahead of me in research, power and land

    Both vassal states were in between me and the masters.

    and everyobe was running the same religion.

    I was running Free Religion because I had the Shwedagon Paya wonder and most of my cities were running conflicting religions compared to my rivals.

    They also had the AP wonder and I Wanted to get my rivals to war with each other so what did I do?

    The answer was Espionage and Golden Age (Spiritual Works too).

    I Traded Liberalism to Medmed and Forced him into Free Religon with a Spy while I Switch to his favourite Civic Vassalage so that i gained more Dipolmacy points with him compared to Darius therefore Medmed became pleased with me.

    I checked the Dipolmacy screen and "Declare war on Darius" was no longer redded out.

    So I DOW on Saladin and Darius then I bribed Medmed & Sury to DOW on Darius forcing to war on two fronts which basically won me the game because after I conquered Saladin and Darius, I was a head in Power (3to1) and technology.

    It was basicaly a won game for me. Medmed did switch back to his state religon later on but by then the damage had been done.

    I'm not sure what "3 way" means exactly but if you want the AI's to war with each other but they seem to be too friendly with each other becuase of religion.

    Use Espionage to change the Dipolmatic situation by switching to a minority religion yourself (make sure the AI also has that religon), force one of the AIs to switch to your minority religion using EP, check the Dipolamcy screen to see if they're willing to be bribed to DOW on your victim. DOW on your victim and bribe the AI to DOW on your victim then switch back to your original religion or civic (if you want).

    Obviously you'll need either a golden age or the spiritual trait if you want to avoid anarchy.

    You also can do it the other way round by Using EP to force your victim into a minority religion then bribing the group who are running the majority religion to DOW on your victim too.
     
  13. Priah

    Priah Warlord

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    Lately every single one of my games has been jewish. I honestly never see any religions after judaism that really take an effect, unless I oracle col and found/spread my own religion.

    I think there needs to be something added that makes it more favorable to convert to the latest religions.

    Not one of my games ever has islam and christianity having any real effect at all.... itd be nice to see something added that makes these two religions always sort of come to the surface end game.
     
  14. troytheface

    troytheface Deity

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    "Instantly, 9 more Civs declared war on me.
    So the upshot here, is does anyone have any useful advice on how to avoid this?"

    Aesthetics-Shadowayne-Free religion-Horse/Sword stack.
    An early strong military victory negates almost every problem -certainly that of religion and worker supply. Raze all religious founding cities which tend to be secondary. Raze the AP in a sneak attack.
     
  15. Bostock

    Bostock King

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    Isabella?! She's a nice Catholic girl, she's not into that sort of thing, proud, jealous, or otherwise.

    Bostock
     
  16. Bostock

    Bostock King

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    The random events system might be useful here -- one "inquisition" random event that only affects the first three religions, and one "missionary effort" event that only affects the last four.

    Bostock
     
  17. r_rolo1

    r_rolo1 King of myself

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    Well, the only way of changing this would be giving a WW-like mechanism to religion spreading, making them to spread a lot less in ancient days ( reflecting the dificulty of moving people from one side to another... never understood that " Budhism is spread to that city in the other side of the world" in 3600 BC ... how did they got there so fast? :lol: ) and making them to spread more as the eras progress.
     
  18. siggboy

    siggboy Monarch/Epic

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    I wanted to post a quite similar topic to this one a while ago already. It is interesting that Bhruic came to a similar conclusion as myself: you almost invariably have TWO large religious blocks, taking a lot of the diversity out of many games. Unless it goes right into the opposite direction with almost everybody having a different religion, but these cases are very rare.

    The AI makes heavy use of missionaries, and they have it easier compared to the player due to their production bonuses. Even if you try to convert them with your own missionaries, chances are you won't prevail because your competitor outmatches you.

    Somebody suggested to found an early religion with a free missionary (eg. Confu), then immediately send them to your closest neighbour so he will convert to it. I have tried this in the past, and I've found that it often doesn't last long because, say, Izzy will send two Buddhist missionaries right afterwards and keep them coming. Your target AI will obviously switch to Buddhism, and you're already fighting windmills...

    The problem that I see is that you can't just dedicate your possibly only early-game production city to missionaries, because you'll also have to build military to boost your power rating and to defend against barbarians. Getting one extra hammer city up just for the religion is asking for too much in many cases.

    I really like rolo's idea of adding distance based penalties to missionary missions, just as it's the case with espionage missions. Random spread is already affected by this, so why not manual spread as well. Your chance of mission(ary) success should rapidly decrease with distance to the city where the missionary was built, or the closest of your cities with that religion, or anything in that spirit. This should also apply if the target city has no religion yet (right now the success rate is 100% in these cases).

    Another idea which I would like to see is the possibility to actually CONVERT a city, ie. properly CHANGING the religion that is in there, not just adding another one. This could come with an increased cost (gold?), or you would need two missionaries, etc.
     
  19. pigswill

    pigswill fly (one day)

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    Bhruic: If you're part of a big religious bloc and want to attack one of your co-religionist neighbours there shouldn't be major diplomatic complications. You should be getting +2 (average) for 'brothers of the faith' and -1 for 'declared on my friend'.
    So in the game for you got dogpiled I'm wondering if there wasn't another dynamic involved. Maybe your power wasn't that hot compared to your target, maybe your target had a nice tech to bribe other AI into declaring on you. Sharing a religion should not have been a big enough factor on its own, so I'm kind of surprised.
     
  20. r_rolo1

    r_rolo1 King of myself

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    My idea was more to limit strongly religion spread in ancient and classic era and get the prob of spreading up as the eras pass ( something like it happens now with war weariness ).... but limiting religion spread to distance would help as well ( at least they should not spread to a city where a missionary couldn't reach in that time.... religions don't spread via telepathy, you know..... )
     

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