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Huge/Marathon - millions of military units in your games too?

jpinard

Martian
Joined
Jan 18, 2002
Messages
760
Location
Enceladus, Saturn
OK, so it's a bit bigger than Huge, but dang. I am floored at how some cities the AI has, contain over 50 units. And then all the other cities have tons of units as well. We're talking hundreds and hundreds of units per AI and up to 18 civs. Is it something I did, or do all big/slow games end up with these insane stacks of doom? It seems impossible to take over a city with these kinds of numbers.
 
You've got more land that can be put under the plow, so to speak, most likely more civs to put that land under the plow, and more turns in which to exploit that land, due to the map and speed settings. If memory serves, on Marathon, unit costs are merely doubled, while everything else is tripled, which magnifies the effects in the first sentence. Yes, insane numbers of troops on Huge/Marathon are to be expected.
 
You've got more land that can be put under the plow, so to speak, most likely more civs to put that land under the plow, and more turns in which to exploit that land, due to the map and speed settings. If memory serves, on Marathon, unit costs are merely doubled, while everything else is tripled, which magnifies the effects in the first sentence. Yes, insane numbers of troops on Huge/Marathon are to be expected.

So maybe a mod for increasing the costs of units is in order?
 
I was playing Hemisphere/large/3 continents/islands/8 civs/marathon speed/Aggressive AI. It had a nice mix of aggressive and not so aggressive leaders. They kept declaring war on me and launched so many naval based invasions. But luckily I was leading the tech race. So I had Machine gun units available to me. I put 3 Machine guns in all my coastal cities. In one battle they once destroyed the whole invading fleet of Alexander. That included 10 Knights, 15 maceman and a few Catapults and Trebuchets.

Oh and after 3 or 4 turns they again launched a similar invasion. with more or less the same number of units. But this time it had stacks of horse archers and swords man attacking my Machine guns. I think AI does not understand the meaning of 'Never bring a sword in a gunfight.'

Stupid AI only likes to attack my coastal cities always with a stack of 25-30 outdated units. And with that it brings so many galleons and caravels. So many times it has happened that I have combustion available and AI has only reached till chemistry. Naturally I always build a fleet of Destroyers to keep these Aggressive AIs in check.
 
The AI builds hordes of units. This actually causes them to fall behind in tech, meaning the "assail 3 machine gunners with 87 macemen" thing happens all the time.
 
Bigger than Huge? 50 units in one city? is that right? The largest civs and the most unit spammy don't have much more than 100 and in the range of 100-150 and that's the overtly unit spammy ones! (Playing with random personalities, I think that AI has the Monty personality, my tanks versus his cavalry hordes which actually are overwhelming me and some of my frontier cities right now! 2 Cavalry will take down 1 infantry.

Some AI actually are able to keep up in tech and still field a good up-to-date army. In another game my offensive has stalled after the first two cities (my few tanks, just go industrialism, against infantry+machine guns+cavalry). It was such a good game (actually I haven't even finished it yet because my offensive stalled) that it's anyone's game still at industrialism, and I am behind on tech - thinking of making a story/report of it since I took screenshots, but seems too tedious.
 
Underdawg, you read that correctly. You know how much fun it is to spend an entire minute hitting the right scroll button just to see what kinds of units the city has (in the city screen)? Not too fun. In my last game, Gilgamish and Darius were the worst offenders. Just mousing over their city to see 4 full rows of units is insane. And it's not like he had a lack of cities. I think Gigamesh had about 40. Probably would have been worse if I hadn't increased minmum city distance to 3 spaces.

When there's that many units, it takes all the fun and strategy out of unit promotion.
 
If the AI is throwing cavalry at your tanks, they aren't keeping up in techs.

I have 8 tanks - not enough at all to take the first big cities beyond the pop 4 cities on the border
He just finished industrialism; expecting to see tanks very soon.
He has mostly infantry/artillery. Same as me, except he has more.
I'd say that's pretty up to date.
It is in a different game than the first game I described, it may or may not have confused you.

Sad thing is I was planning to attack in order to compete well in production the very soon space race, but I've kind of abandoned that game for a later day.

Underdawg, you read that correctly. You know how much fun it is to spend an entire minute hitting the right scroll button just to see what kinds of units the city has (in the city screen)? Not too fun. In my last game, Gilgamish and Darius were the worst offenders. Just mousing over their city to see 4 full rows of units is insane. And it's not like he had a lack of cities. I think Gigamesh had about 40. Probably would have been worse if I hadn't increased minmum city distance to 3 spaces.

When there's that many units, it takes all the fun and strategy out of unit promotion.

Since you changed the minimum tiles between cities to 3, do the cities work extra tiles or is it still 20+1 tiles?

40 cities..... woah...... how many tiles in total are in your huger-than-huge maps? I think this might be a side effect of having so much land to each civ, I mean if a unit spammy civ with 20 cities can keep 100-150 units, I think 40 could handle maybe 200-250 before going into longbowmen vs tanks scenario.

Wait, I didn't catch it at first "100-200 units per AI? Is Aggressive AI on? Or is it normal AI?
 
Overall, I'd say the AI is excellent - so I wasn't trying to commplain about difficulty. In fact I have a tough time keeping pace.

It feels like something is wrong with Huge-Marathon games since so many units are created on all sides. I don't mind a lot of units, but sheesh not this many. And like I said, when you have a bajillion units promotions and unit care is basically pointless. It's also no wonder my turns were taking 30 seconds a pop.
 
Overall, I'd say the AI is excellent - so I wasn't trying to commplain about difficulty. In fact I have a tough time keeping pace.

It feels like something is wrong with Huge-Marathon games since so many units are created on all sides. I don't mind a lot of units, but sheesh not this many. And like I said, when you have a bajillion units promotions and unit care is basically pointless. It's also no wonder my turns were taking 30 seconds a pop.

The AI needs to brush up on warring a bit more, some AI still send only maybe a two unit stack, which of course gets annihilated, instead of a proper stack, though only once in a while.

On the topic of stacks, I find that machine guns are excellent city defenders and stack defenders since they suffer no collateral damage from siege weapons.
 
On the topic of stacks, I find that machine guns are excellent city defenders and stack defenders since they suffer no collateral damage from siege weapons.

This is true, however they do take damage from air bombardment and missiles.
 
Machine gunners are great city defenders. I like to keep a couple Crossbowmen with CG III around and then update them to machinegunners. I don't think Longbowmen can be updated to machinegunners, but Crossbowmen can. As far as I know, it's the only way you can get machine gunners with City Garrison promotions.
 
It sounds to me like you accidentally hit the Aggressive AI button on start up.... you never see this on normal AI on any level really even on massive maps (bigger than come with the game)....

Aside from that Jpinard..... I have seen you tinkering with endless XML files.... I think it's impossible to say what's happening in your games these days, you've tweaked so much you could have changed a lot of things we dont know about.

I'd say post a save game, but I expect its your modified version of the game?
 
On larger maps i tend to get some early warlord units, an nurture them through the game, you need to pick your odd's carefully, the way combat works 99.9% is pretty much a guranteed win button (i have never lost at these odd's depsite a huge number of battles, 3 figure numbers & counting), although funnily enough 99.5 is not and although rare you can loose at those odd's, it's all in that final .9 at the end which means the unit can overcome a what i term as a bad round were no matter what the odd's you seem to loose, i used warlord units a lot in my last game, i normally don't bother to be frank (thinking there not worth the effort) but by using terrain to my advantage an ensuring the stack is well managed an the warlord leader carefully used i have found them to be immensley useful.

The extra upgrades (city raider 75% attack) + all the other tack on promotions means that as time goes on more an more units start to fall into the 99.9 odd's catogory especially when attacking city's (were most units tend to hang out).
I was the japs an had a nice warlord swordsman, when he became a samuri things got going again, he's now a mech inf, an pretty much singlehandedly defended from a hill, my partly damaged an smaller stack from a horde of cav, cannon etc now i know these are more backward units but numbers count for a lot as once a unit starts to take dmg it's effectivenss drops off very quickly an the unit was already slightly dmged 29 str, first up a onslaught of cannons causing all that nice colateral dmg then cav then rifles the unit must have defended at least 30 times it's XP sure went up an awful lot, what surprised me at the end of the fight was that at the start of the next round the unit had healed back to 100% health an had taken almost no dmg in those 30 fights, it had a lot of first strikes and a high strengh rating an from analysing the combat log after it was clear that the unit was winning most fights in the first strike phase, when using it i notice that it rarely if ever takes any damage from combat, meaning it can defend over an over again, i found warlords if used rightly are a great way to deal with those huge stacks of outdated units without needing to field massive stacks of your own, in fact once fully kitted warlord units can handle really large number of enemies even of similar teck level if your using the terrain etc to it's full pontencial, i'm sure the above is not for everyone but i have a newfound respect for the warlord unit now
 
I was playing a game on Emperor/ Non-aggressive/ Epic. Gilgamesh was a large civ with 20 cities or more. One of his cities had more than 90 units in it! The rest of his cities had an average of 10 to 12 units. The crazy thing is that Gilgamesh somehow maintained this gigantic standing army without falling out of the tech race. 90 units in one city! Absurd.

I thought that Civ 4 attempted to move away from the gigantic and burdensome standing armies that were common in Civ 3. In fact, for the most part, it seemed like the numbers of units in Warlords stayed fairly reasonable. But, suddenly in BTS, the monstrous stacks of units are back.
 
Machine guns make awesome stack defenders even after the AI gets assembly line (infantry). 3 Grenadiers with COMBAT I / PINCH promos cost 390 gold to upgrade into machine guns, on epic (necessary since you can't get PINCH with a non-upgraded machine gun). This gives the machine gun str 18 + 85% if defending against gunpowder! Look how this stacks up with infantry (taking the infantry's gunpowder bonus into effect):

MG (18 + 50% vs. gunpowder + 10% combat I + 25% tile defense) vs. INF (20 + 20% combat I + II) = MG 33.3 vs. INF 24. Murderous.

3 MG can take out 6 - 8 infantry (considering the above stats)
 
I just replayed the same Emperor-level normal-size marathon-game 3-4 times, just because it was so much fun in exploring how the AI engage in large-scale warfare. By building up my own military in different ways and starting the war in different ways, the AI (Augustus) responded with different build queues.

In one iteration, the war was mainly naval and we fought over 2 oceans, each with 2 vassals. By the time the naval war was decided, the land war was almost anti-climatic.

In another iteration, I wiped out one of the other civs to control more land/ports, so I only had 1 vassal while he had two. It was a mainly land war as I forced a landing with the first move of the war with 25 Transports landing 95 units (lost 5 on amphib assault) and we fought it out on land. Before the end of the land war, the more powerful of his vassal abandoned him and negotiated a separate peace.

In yet another iteration, the initial landing wasn't with the same force, and it became a running sea battle as I tried to keep the sea lanes open while Augustus tried to sneak in convoys and nuke-armed subs.

------------------

For the land-battle version, the final count of "modern" units lost/killed was

Lost by me (Maya)

17 Tanks
53 Modern Armor
34 Infantry
48 Mechanized Infantry
35 Gunships

Very little in the way of SAM and mobile artillery units lost, and I'm not counting air.

Augustus and his allies lost

56 Tanks
165 Modern Armor
133 Infantry
193 Mechanized Infantry
174 Gunships

39 Mobile SAM
36 Marine
80 Paratroopers
17 Navy Seals

--------------------------

As you can see from the kill ratio, the win hinged on making sure that I attack only when advantageous, and taking advantage of terrain/promotions. In the land-war version, the Demographics showed the Romans with over 14 million soldiers to my 7.4 million. :D :D

The key to victory is always to invite the AI to attack you, and then coop them up in their cities so that you can bring the advantages of a City-Raider promoted Modern Armor to bear.

Boatloads of fun...
 
sounds very civ3ish hehe, I like it :)
 
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