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I need help fighting an early war.

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Strategy & Tips' started by Great Big Al, Aug 8, 2011.

  1. Great Big Al

    Great Big Al Chieftain

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2011
    Messages:
    30
    Civ 3 veteran. Picked up Civ 4 about a week ago (gold edition) and beat a game on the easiest difficulty. Bumped it up 2 notches and now I'm in a bit of trouble.

    I am playing as England with Elizabeth. I have a pretty nice starting position so I saved before I did anything so I could try out some different strategies. Good thing I did.

    I found out that I am on a small continent. It's just me and Saladin. He starts out uncomfortably close to me, there's only enough room for 1 or 2 cities between our capitals.

    Once I found him I decided I wanted to take him out. I already had bronze working and copper at the time so I built up a force of swordsmen while I beelined the tech that gives catapults. Once my forces were ready I sent them straight at Mecca. The city fell without too much trouble. He had 2 more cities left so I went after those. By the time I had taken all 3 cities he had built 2 more. Took those down and took Saladin out of the game. A barb city popped up on the ruins of one of his cities so I had to turn around and take that down. By the time all this was over I was way behind in the tech race (the top 8 list popped up and I wasn't even on it.) So I decided to restart.

    If I detailed all the strategies I have used against him it would take too long, so I'll list them in short form. Tried rushing him with warriors right out of the gate. That didn't work. I tried surrounding him but he built his cities too quickly. I beelined for swords and then horse archers. The problem with that is without the catapults I lost massive amounts of troops trying to take Mecca (which is on a hill) and he could replace his archers faster than I could build up the troops to take them down.

    So how do I take out Saladin without setting my self back so far that the cost out weighs the benefits? I am attaching the save at 4000 BC if it will help yall tailor your advice to my situation.

    Thanks in advance.

    -Al
     

    Attached Files:

  2. AutomatedTeller

    AutomatedTeller Frequent poster

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    I think the key is not to worry about being too far back - you get all his land, and you are probably going to win.

    The important thing is leveraging your successes - you have all these cities! Build some wonders! Cottage spam! trade for a tech only 1 other civ has and trade it around for profit!!
     
  3. ecuwins

    ecuwins Emperor

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2006
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    1,288
    You should have skipped the warrior rush.

    You had copper? Axes, my friend. Axe rushes need to be done quick. Usually you build one extra city and just pump out axes. Once you have 6-10 axemen, go for it, but don't stop building them until you're certain the war is coming to an end.

    If he has horses, be sure to add a couple spears to your stack.
     
  4. Great Big Al

    Great Big Al Chieftain

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    I wasn't clear in my OP. I tried all of those strategies on different games. I tried one, failed, reloaded, tried another, failed, reloaded.

    I don't have any strategic resources near my capital. There is Iron between me and Saladin that I can get easily. There are also horses NE of me that I can get easily. Copper is a little tougher to get, but doable. It would just mean that I have to build a rather long road to get it.

    I tired axes and they didn't work that well against his fortified archers. That's why I went with the sword rush. Later on I added horse archers to the mix and those actually had a higher %.
     
  5. ahcos

    ahcos King

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2010
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    On your difficulty you can easily take every AI before they have their second town out with Charriots, Axes or even Spears/Archers, at least if you're fast enough. You'll realise that you can rush out of essentially every position on every AI up to Monarch, Emperor ist the first difficulty where it can get tricky, but usually you're save with Axe/Charriot rushes there aswell, as long as they're well executed.

    A few things that are good to know:

    1. Chose the right workertechs. Get your workertechs (agriculture, if needed Animal Husbandery), Wheel and Bronzeworking. As soon as you have your strategic resource chop as much as you can while building units, and when you have 5-6 Axes or Charriots go out and kill. You'll need more Units on higher difficulties, but for your case that should do the job.

    2. Chose the right target. In this special case you can't chose your target, but generally you'll want AIs with low unit spam probability (for example Ghandi, Hatsepsut, Elizabeth), preferably non-protective and relativly near your own position.

    3. Chose the right promotions. Usually you'll want to have either Combat (Horse Archers, Charriots and alike) or City Raider (Axes, Swords)

    4. Chose the right overall plan. That includes: which cities to take in which order? How do you plan to recover after the rush? What techs will you need after you've rushed? Will you have to settle more cities or will the ones you've captures be enough for the moment? It's important to think about those things, otherwise your rush will either be less effective or you will not benefit as much as you could. Don't forget to scout your target as much as possible so you know where you're heading.


    And finally a mini step-by-step-guide how to execute a rush on your difficulty:

    1. Settle your cap, build worker first.
    2. techs: agriculture, Animal Husbandery, Mining, Bronzeworking, Wheel, not exactly in that order but most of the time you'll need them all anyway. After that you'll want Pottery, Mysticism and Writing.
    3. When you've located the strategic resource of your choice, build a settler (if needed) and settle the resource in a way that the city has the resource in it's FIRST ring and improve it asap so you can start building troops.
    4. Meanwhile, get another worker and baracks in your capital, then start building troops while chopping as much as possible. I'd also advise you to use Slavery everytime the whip-anger has gone away. On higher difficulties you'll have to use Slavery alot more, but for your difficulty that should do the trick.
    5. As soon as you have 5-6 Units (+2 if your target is a unit spammer or protective, +2 if it is a unit spammer/protective and has settled all its cities on hills ...) it's wartime. It helps to road towards your target, even more important with Axes/Swords as they're too slow otherwise.
    6. When you've captured everything, spam some cottages along rivers and build libraries. Make sure to follow the 1,5 workers per city rule of thumb so you're mostly working improved tiles. Tech towards Alphabet and start trading techs.

    Yeah, well... that's it. Pretty straight forward and works almost guranteed up to monarch if well executed. Ofc there's alot more to know, but i can't sum up everything there's to know in just one post. Afaik there are pretty decent guides that adress rushing in general in the War Academy.
     
  6. d_mess

    d_mess Chieftain

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    Dont bother teching to catapults just to rush somebody. The collateral damage is ok but not essential, and if you felt you needed them for the bombardment, its WAYYY more efficient to attack the weaker cities first and get your army promoted, and then attack the walled city with cityraider3.
     
  7. 6K Man

    6K Man Bureaucrat

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    A few comments:

    When you’re on a continent with just one other AI, the right move is to kill off that AI, because it’s not going to trade techs with you. Good call there.

    Don’t keep all the AI’s cities. Some will be placed badly; most will not have any improvements in them. Raze the ones you don’t want. If I am warring early, I’ll keep an AI capital, plus any cities with goodies in them (Shrines and Wonders). If a city is on a site that has a lot of resources or is strategically useful (blocking another AI), that may be worth keeping too. But in the BC era, most AI cities will be size 1 or 2 with no improvements. Burn ‘em, especially if they’re far away (maintenance scales with distance). You’ll save a fortune.

    If you have Swordsmen facing Archers, you’ll want at least twice as many Swordsmen as he has Archers. If it’s a mature city on a hill… three times as many. Build a big force up before declaring, and don’t attack a city unless you can take it that turn. Otherwise, all the weakened defenders will heal up faster than your wounded attackers will and you’ll be in a losing war of attrition.

    If you take the AI capital and a couple more cities and then run out of attackers, make peace and come back in 10 turns. The key is crippling the AI early, and taking a capital will do that, just about every time.

    Out-of-control maintenance costs are why your economy crashed and your research suffered. You can’t REX (rapid expansion) freely in Civ4; at some point, maintenance costs will overwhelm you. That can happen anywhere from a 6 to 15 city count, depending on other factors. You get out of a crash by doing the following (in approximate order):

    - Get Writing, whip Libraries, run Specialists and/or build Research
    - Get Currency (which in itself will help by giving an extra trade route per city) and build Wealth
    - Get Monarchy, switch to Hereditary Rule, use your leftover army to boost happiness in your bigger cities
    - Get Code of Laws, whip Courthouses in cities with maintenance >5

    All this presupposes that you are doing “the basics” – building a Worker first, settling near food sources, having at least 1 Worker per city, improving resources first, and building and working cottages where possible.
     
  8. huerfanista

    huerfanista Emperor

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    Send your starting warrior to Saladin and steal his first worker when it comes out (if you can get any woodsmen promos from fighting barb animals it's even better). Then pillage any improvements and camp your warrior on a wooded hill. Take peace as soon as he offers it, and then steal his next worker when it comes out. He'll never have more than 1 city before you're ready to attack. Use his stolen workers to road to the horses, get a settler out to claim them, and start chopping chariots in both cities. Figure 1 chariot for each warrior that he has, and 3 chariots for each archer. On noble, you're very likely to be able to hit him before he gets any archers, since he'll chase a religion first and he doesn't start with hunting.
     

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