How to manage diplomacy effectively? Half of the civ's are annoyed with me?

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Strategy & Tips' started by Danvok, Nov 28, 2010.

  1. Danvok

    Danvok Chieftain

    Nov 26, 2010
    It seems like every time a make a little trade someone, decide not to go to war, or decide not to stop trading that someone decides to hate on me. Also, if any war is declared it ruins my relations with more then one civ. I've got to the point where dilpomatic victories don't seem to be happening and I can't even manage any alliances.

    How can I up my diplomacy? I know that wars don't help but, god damnit, you need to expand sometimes and if people are in your way its either war or remain a small crappy civ for the rest of the game.

    Any thoughts? Can someone advise me here?
  2. Archon_Wing

    Archon_Wing Vote for me or die

    Apr 3, 2005
    I would go around asking the leaders and find someone nobody likes. They usually make good targets. Also, your best ally probably isn't your neighbor (competitor) but his neighbor. If your neighbor is a notorious hater, (Monte!) kill him off so he can't hate you anymore. :p

    The other thing is to not adopt religion so early, otherwise you'll get a ton of "heathen religion" nonsense. On the other hand, if you've noticed that a particular religion has become popular, especially among potential allies, switching to it can help a lot. It's even better if someone asks you to convert to it.
  3. CerberusAlpha

    CerberusAlpha Chieftain

    Feb 2, 2010
    Toronto, Ontario, Canada
    its okay if half of the civs hate u if the other half of the civs like u
    pick a side and stick with it. share a religion with them, trade with them, go to war or stop trading with the people they ask you to.
    dont have anything to do with the other side except war.
  4. oldskald

    oldskald Warlord

    Nov 23, 2010
    Never underestimate the value of trading technologies with rivals (although don't sell them something that can hurt you!). Don't give them the tech, sell them the tech. Trade resources with them too. The +4 "our trade relations have been fair and forthright" is a nice little counter-balance to the -1 heathen religion penalty. If you just give them stuff you may get no diplomatic bonus (which is weird, but heyho!).

    If they don't have Theocracy, spread your religion to them (if you have open borders). Bring them round to you from the inside - they may even convert! And if you founded the religion and have the shrine then even if they still hate you at least you're getting a cash bonus and line of sight intel.

    In the end, you have to accept that there are some sulky leaders out there who are unlikely to ever like you (Tokugawa springs to mind), but as has been written earlier, as long as you have some friends you should be relatively ok. Sadly, once religion, defensive pacts, borders and trade come into the picture there will always be some red in the dialogue box with pretty much every other civ. The trick is to try and minimise it. With some leaders the best you can hope for is to have them neutral, but that is better than hostile.
  5. AbsoluteZero

    AbsoluteZero Deity

    May 21, 2010
    If all else fails, build a settler, send him to some unsettled spot near your target civ and settle him, then gift the city. This gives an instant +4 trade bonus and sometimes +1 for "you liberated one of our cities". Usually this makes them pleased.

    Also if you place the city in between two civs, the resulting culture tensions can turn them against each other.
  6. Nick Carpathia

    Nick Carpathia Unleash the HAARP

    Aug 17, 2010
    You know what's even better? Placing the gift city just out of range of a good resource, blocking other cities from using the resource at the same time!
  7. Genghis Dhan

    Genghis Dhan Chieftain

    May 6, 2008
    Danvok, these are all good suggestiongs. The key point is this: one's tendency is to hang back and make no enemies, but the game is designed to force you to take sides and, knowing that, make the best choices with the deepest understanding of the game. If the game were designed the other way, everyone would hunker down into little Switzerland/Belgium like countries and might become boring. I'm guilty of the same thing you are, often. I don't like declaring war halfway around the world when I'm trying to trade with everyone, keep options open for the future, and so on.

    So, generally, and a lot of this is recap for what Cerberus and the others have written: 1) decide who your most likely allies will be and stick with them. They want something, give it to them. 2) Don't worry about writing off the others. As they drift towards enemy-dom, they won't be of much use to you anyway. 3) Picking a major religious bloc is a good way to secure yourself with allies. Don't be the weakest in the bunch, at some point they'll turn on you, but meanwhile they're far more likely on average to war with their enemies. 4) Trade can blur your relations - you've got various trades going for resources that you don't want to void by declaring war for diplomatic reasons. You can sometimes resume the trade after the in-name-only war ends, but do it a couple of times and the other guy's feelings to you will worsen, and he won't trade with you. One strategy I myself need to try harder with, is this: living with fewer resources. I notice other civs that only have a couple of trades going. What makes this possible? a) controlling population growth so you don't need as many different foods or luxuries b) using buildings to amplify health and happiness, rather than relying on trade goods c) tolerating small amounts of unhealth or unhappiness. d) Maybe figuring that some of the resources located in your enemies' territory, you'll take later in the game when you inevitably go to war with them in earnest.

    In figuring out which and how many techs to gift away, I look at a couple of things. If the leader asking it is borderline with me, I definitely give it. If he's a clear enemy, I don't bother, because it'll just go to waste. He's still my enemy afterwars. If he's a clear friend - that's the ticklish one. You don't want to give away too many, it hurts you competitively, and if he's an overwhelming friend, you can afford to take a couple of neg points. But you have to be careful. One day, if you are no longer bound by religious ties (most commonly in later game when either or both of you go to Free Religion) his warm feelings towards you may cool, and the neg points left by nonreligious events like "you refused to help me" will loom larger.
  8. Farm Boy

    Farm Boy The long wait

    Sep 8, 2010
    Do not neglect to consider shared favorite civic bonuses, they can tip things over the edge sometimes.
  9. Dr.Null

    Dr.Null forIhavetastedthesushi

    Dec 25, 2009
    This also depends on what victory condition you're going for. If you have begun your war-march to global domination, screw 'em. Your non-vassal friends have already outlived their usefulness.
  10. babar

    babar King

    May 11, 2010
    It might not be a direct answer to your question, but the biggest improvement in my diplo came from watching some of TMIT's youtube games, particularly the diplo wins. I learned to actually want the AIs to demand stuff.

    If you can maintain a tech lead (not suggesting this is always possible) you can often be friends with pretty much everyone, even if some of them hate each other.

    Frequently you do have to pick sides, but in most cases you can avoid being the worst enemy/most likely war target of anyone dangerous, since you only got into the situation in the first place because everyone hates each other already.

    If you see a potential pariah state emerging somewhere, you might as well close borders and trades with them before your friends demand you do so.

    Going to war is only -1 for the friends of your target. It should be pretty trivial in the long run, although of course short term you might have to consider the situation seriously.
  11. gilmore606

    gilmore606 Warlord

    Oct 15, 2010
    This -- I don't mind if Shaka is Cautious to me as long as he's Annoyed with someone else. It's like the old joke about the two campers who see Shaka headed their way and the first guy starts putting on running shoes.

    "What are you doing?" his buddy yells. "You can't outrun Shaka!"

    "I don't have to. I just have to outrun YOU."
  12. nfw

    nfw King

    Aug 31, 2010
    The only diplomatic victories I've ever achieved were because I took over half the world, managing relationships between AIs is pretty much impossible with all the hidden modifiers they get. For example I've seen pleased at -1, or cautious at -4.

    Even if you have some religious oddball, it's hard to isolate him because there are usually a couple of leaders that don't care about religion and it's easy for them to maintain good relationships.

    So far, I've found the "aggressive AI" setting creates much more tension and dynamic diplomatic landscape, but of course you can't avoid wars.
  13. babar

    babar King

    May 11, 2010
    I strongly recommend checking out TMIT's youtube play-throughs for anyone struggling with diplomacy. His diplomacy above all else is absolutely exemplary (as far as I am able to tell). After watching one of his games (I think it was the Saladin one), I found myself winning my only "proper" diplo victory almost accidentally, by aping his approach.

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