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I was attacked, I won, now everyone hates me


May 17, 2024
After playing Civilization 5 for 200 hours, I decided to learn how to play the game the right way. Usually I played on difficulty 2, cause it's fun. Now I switched to 4. And it's different - I have to understand the mechanics a bit better. That's a nice challenge. But now I have a problem with understanding relation between AI players.

So I played the game as usual. Huns were my friend, they started to gather troops close to my border and then they stabbed me in my back. I killed all of invading units. They asked for peace, but I thought that I can win the war, so I declined. In the end I took all of their cities and destroyed Huns completely. Then things started to get complicated.

All of AI opponents denounced me, three of them declared war. Fast forward to year 1980. I couldn't even get to "neutral" with anyone. During the congress they banned trading with me AND with city states. I got too big (9 cities, then after a war I as gifted 10th useless city). My economy collapsed and I'm basically done.

So here are some things I don't understand:
1. Once I get warmonger penalty, that means my diplomacy is done? I mean, it's just difficulty 4... I would expect some forgiveness after 100 years.
2. Why, whenever someone attacks me, I see that taking over their city will give me penalty, even though I didn't star the war?
3. How can one nation get 15 votes during congress meeting, while other nations get maximum of 7? Should I befriend city-states?
Taking a city is warmongering. I don't know what else to tell you. That's what the AIs call warmongering, and it's a permanent evaluation.

Your total votes in congress depends on which era of the congress this is, and then how many city state allies you have. You get a number C(era) of delegates per City-State ally, plus a quantity base to yourself for being a major power. In the first congress, C is 0.
Yes, diplomacy can be brutal sometimes. For your questions:

1. For each city you capture you get some amount of warmonger penalty. If you totally wipe out an AI civ you will get the most extreme warmonger penalty and everyone will hate you. Your reputation may never recover. So I usually only capture the really good cities and always leave the AI with at least one city. If they are an agressive civ like the Huns, try to weaken them enough so that they can't recover easily but you still don't want to capture their last city. Note: You will also get an extreme warmonger penalty for capturing a city state (it doesn't seem as bad as wiping out an AI Civ but its worse than taking one AI city.

2. This has always annoyed me too but its just the way it works. No matter who starts the war, you will get warmonger penalty for capturing their cities.

3. You get extra votes in the World Congress for each city state ally. (Ally not just friend). It varys based on game era - at the beginning you don't get any votes for CS allies, then at some point you'll get one extra vote, then later you'll get two extra votes per CS ally. So yes, its good to ally city states!
First off, yes, you will always be hated, forever, if you wipe out a civ. And it will never change.

Try to avoid capturing a warmonger's capital and you usually won't be hated.
It may be just me, but you are also favored if you "liberate" a lot of captured cities too. I've found myself doing that in late games recently to even the scores of the lower players but put me over the top.
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