I Want to Assassinate My Own Spy Specialists

Plains-Cow

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CIV IV BTS is hopelessly in love with forcing citizens to work as spy specialists. Great spies are the least useful great person for me in almost every single game I play. But what does the city decide? Oh, you have an opportunity to grow onto a colossus-lighthouse water tile and have assigned the city to focus on gold? No, you have enough food and money, you can afford a SPY SPECIALIST with your excess, so I'll assign that. I don't know if it was an attempt to get players invested in the new mechanic or to do espionage more in general by defaulting to running a spy when possible, but it's insufferable to have my non-specialists neatly organized, have anger for a turn in a city, and then come back next turn to have them reassigned as SPIES. Great artists? Merchant? Engineers? Nope, spies. It's probably one of the few things that I genuinely dislike about CIV IV despite loving the game otherwise.

Does anyone have any solutions or strategies for this?
 

AcaMetis

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Regrettably the best solution I've found is to either micromanage your cities every time it grows a new pop (because that new pop will be assigned as a spy if you don't tell the city to focus on something else, in which case it'll work a stupid tile instead) or just never build courthouses at all. They're not the greatest building in the first place, so not a huge loss there, but I'll freely admit it's hardly an ideal (or even respectable) solution.
 

Plains-Cow

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Regrettably the best solution I've found is to either micromanage your cities every time it grows a new pop (because that new pop will be assigned as a spy if you don't tell the city to focus on something else, in which case it'll work a stupid tile instead) or just never build courthouses at all. They're not the greatest building in the first place, so not a huge loss there, but I'll freely admit it's hardly an ideal (or even respectable) solution.
No courts and state property always, got it.
 

Gumbolt

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Never building court houses is a bit extreme. In some places they are worth it especially if you go corps.Generally in cities where upkeep is over 10. I think some of the city screens show you which cities are running speciallists. If you want to play higher levels a bit of micro is needed.

If you play cuirs rushes you shouldn't reach state property unless you play larger maps.
 

Plains-Cow

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Never building court houses is a bit extreme. In some places they are worth it especially if you go corps.Generally in cities where upkeep is over 10. I think some of the city screens show you which cities are running speciallists. If you want to play higher levels a bit of micro is needed.

If you play cuirs rushes you shouldn't reach state property unless you play larger maps.
I'm an EXTREME player, what can I say. I don't usually do cuirs, but Henrik's making me like them more and more. I guess it's just microoooooooooooooooooooooooo all the way and pray if you miss one you don't get the 3% great spy chance.
 

Gumbolt

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If you do your great people generation during golden ages I doubt you will have that many court houses if your big cities are near your capital. Your more likely to get a great artist from wonders/national wonders. Easy to plan specialists during golden ages.
 

Plains-Cow

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If you do your great people generation during golden ages I doubt you will have that many court houses if your big cities are near your capital. Your more likely to get a great artist from wonders/national wonders. Easy to plan specialists during golden ages.
Yeah that's what I usually do. My golden ages are something that I enjoy a lot for starving into great artists for trolling.
 

nebux

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use the city management button to focus on culture, research, money and the city governor would use those specialist instead of spies
 

sampsa

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I use emphasize :food: button a lot, sometimes also :commerce: .
 

lymond

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Plains-Cow

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Prolly no solution other than watching growth notifications?
I'm just glad automation can be turned off..doing that first in every city ;)
Yep, that's what I've been doing. Just trying to catch them slipping in when the city grows. Wish I could run spies to eliminate spy specialists in my own city.
 

ArchGhost

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Does anyone have any solutions or strategies for this?
If you aren't already using BUG mod, I'd recommend it for the improved Domestic Advisor that you can heavily customize. This won't stop the cities from assigning the Spy specialists in the first place when they grow a size, but you can very easily and quickly identify where they are at and even unassign them/reassign them right from the Domestic Advisor's city list without opening the city screens:
Civ4ScreenShot0020.JPG
If you hit the "minus" toggle on the spy, it moves to an unassigned Citizen, and then if you hit the minus toggle on a Citizen, it forces them to work a tile (picked based on value in the same way citizen automation assigns tiles) instead if there's one available. Not exactly as optimal as picking the tile out using the city management screen yourself but hey, it's much easier to parse through a lot a cities this way.

Unfortunately the game is very likely to hire spy specialists as long as it can (i.e courthouse is present) due to the governor/automation weighting -- if you aren't earning "enough" EP, the game tries to run spies to generate more when the governor is in control. New pop assignment on growth uses the same routine for picking uses for citizens as the governor, apparently. It does similar things to avoid growth when the happy cap is close, swapping Merchants and Scientists around based on slider setting and your economic standing (it will run more merchants when expenses are high and slider is up), and forcibly running an artist to pop borders even if you are building Culture/are CRE already.
 
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^^ For some reason, my domestic advisor info is "cramped" into about a quarter of the whole menu screen. I've heard it said that this is fully customizable, but I haven't been able to find a way to "stretch it out" to the appropriate size. As it is, it cannot display 3-digit numbers, which is a bit annoying. Does anyone know how to correct this?
 

Plains-Cow

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^^ For some reason, my domestic advisor info is "cramped" into about a quarter of the whole menu screen. I've heard it said that this is fully customizable, but I haven't been able to find a way to "stretch it out" to the appropriate size. As it is, it cannot display 3-digit numbers, which is a bit annoying. Does anyone know how to correct this?
Post screen shot?
 

ArchGhost

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Does anyone know how I can "stretch" the information out on this page?
Hit that button shaped like a scroll near the two arrow buttons, that opens the edit mode.

Civ4ScreenShot0021.JPG

From here you can add/remove fields, and set the width of each field in pixels. Increase the pixel size and it will make those columns wider.

EDIT: A little more info:
-the customization is for each screen individually
-the list on the right is ALL field options, the list on the left are the ones being used on the current screen. Select them and use the upper set of arrows to move them from one side or the other
-order top to bottom correlates to column order left to right
-most of the info available is spread out onto the other screens, but you can customize one of them with your most used/most useful information as you want so you don't have to flip through a bunch of different advisor screens.
My most used screen looks like this:
Civ4ScreenShot0022.JPG

This screen lets me see general useful stuff I watch all game, like size, whether the city has garrison/power, whether they are automating, what they are building and how many turns to completion, unit XP when built, and probably the most important thing, which cities can whip/gold rush and for how much pop/gold, which can be multi-selected and all made to rush their builds in a batch action. It also tracks whip and draft anger, as well as showing what religions and specialists are in each city. The commerce and hammer output columns are useful for picking cities for specific tasks, like a high hammer city for building a wonder or space part, or where to put Wallstreet/Oxford.

Make sure you hit the "Save" button before leaving the screen or nothing will update.
 
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