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Iaro's Civ Rankings

Discussion in 'Civ3 Strategy Articles' started by IaRo, Feb 18, 2011.

  1. Calis

    Calis on time

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    You are perfectly right, templar_x. :goodjob:
     
  2. templar_x

    templar_x usually walks his talks

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    Dunedin is a Major university (Kiwis May say: varsity) town in the very SE of the s. Island of New Zealand.
    Otago is the Name of the rather Large province. It is famous for the Place of Invention of modern bungee Jumping and some Great shiraz wines. They Even had a Gold Rush there some time in the past.

    Templar_x
     
  3. Daeron

    Daeron The Apprentice

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    Although not the first, I do think it's an important consideration, especially for the Numidian, the Pygmee and the Babylonian archer. They tend to end up on top of any stack, so as soon as an AI attacks, you have almost no control over the timing of your GA. It is also why I like the Swiss Mercs, riders, elephants etc., because they appear not long after moving out of despotism and researching towards universities and such at a critical time.
     
  4. Stratagist IV

    Stratagist IV Ex virtute honos

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    I think that, for the most part, these rankings only really apply to the typical pangea, domination/conquest games I tend to see on CFC. I know that the IaRo said these rankings weren't fact or final so I figured I'd interject my own thoughts and opinions. Obviously everyone has different strategies, and some people find a certain niche with specific civilizations that a given strategy works for. My opinion when people say that certain civs are "better" than others is that said niche is more easily found than others.

    My critiques are as follows (my average difficulty level is Regent)
    -Seafaring: Is not the worst trait... first, it starts with alphabet which isn't half bad and second those extra moves can help you grab islands and contacts early.

    -Expansionist: Mediocre? maybe on Emperor. Huts are awesome for trading and getting an early tech lead. Even on higher difficulties early contacts and maps are valuable (especially thanks to contact & map trading being pushed back)

    My rankings go as follows:

    Civs with versatile strategies/civs that I know how to use well (Tier 1): Russia, Germans, Celts, Greeks, Babylon, Persia, France, China

    Civs that I have found strats that work well but have some drawbacks/civs that I'm growing accustomed to but not really familiar with (Tier 2): Sumeria, Japan, Vikings, America, Greece, Korea.

    -Then come the proles :lol: -
     
  5. Zardnaar

    Zardnaar Chieftain

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    When we done our reviews once upon a time we did mention if a civ was particuly good at a niche or situation (seafaring island maps, expansionism continents etc). I think we made 2 basic assumptions.

    1. Civs were rated at Emperor difficulty or around the middle of the road.
    2. You were starting a game where the land mass type was random.

    Some of the traits at higher levels of play are better while others are useless at higher difficulties and marginal even on the lower ones. Generally the agricultural, commercial and industrial traits are regarded highly, expansionist and miltaristic not so much. And then you have to consider the UU. Essentially any civ with 2/3 of those traits and a good UU is an excellent civ, 2/3 a good civ and 1/3 a weak civ as a general guideline. A particuly good UU can also drag up a "weak" civ. Trait synergy however is also important along with starting techs as Seafaring and Commercial both have alphabet IIRC.

    Iroqous. 2 great trait s and one of the best UU in the game= tier one.
    Celts. 1 great trait and one of the best U in game= tier one.

    Maya 2 great traits, fast expanding civ but awkward starting techs and weak UU= good civ.

    Zulu weak traits, below average UU= weak civ.

    Very few civs are completely useless (being defined as outclassed in every way by other civs). Mongols, Hittites and Zulu are probably the closest thing to it while the Germans have kinda weak traits and a very late and marginal UU with the Americans in a similar boat but their UU is even weaker. Some civs are particuly good in their niche such as Babylon with culture, Greece with Science, and England with money. The tiers we came up with were guidelines only. I quite like the English for example even though they were rated as a tier 3 civ. There was even a bit of disagreement among the authors of the civ reviews from long ago over some of the placing the civs were rated at. From memory (I haven't played Civ III for a long time) I would rate the civs as such.

    Tier One
    Iroquois (Agricultural, Commercial) (Alphabet, Pottery)
    -good 2nd trait
    -best starting tech
    -great UU

    Sumeria (Agricultural, Scientific) (Bronze Working, Pottery)
    -great traits
    -UU average

    Netherlands (Agricultural, Seafaring) (Alphabet, Pottery)
    -worst 2nd trait
    -good UU
    -best starting tech

    Celts (Agricultural, Religious) (Ceremonial Burial, Pottery)
    -high priced solid UU
    -CB weak starting tech

    Greece (Scientific, Commercial) (Bronze Working, Alphabet)
    -good 2nd trait
    -good UU
    -best starting tech

    Persia (Industrious, Scientific) (Bronze Working, Masonry)
    -great traits
    -best UU

    Arabia (Expansionist, Religious) (Ceremonial Burial, Pottery)
    -pottery 2nd best starting tech, CB is worst
    -expansionist is crap shoot (can be great or non-factor depending on luck)
    -good UU but would rather pay 10 more shields for extra hit point knight

    Ottoman (Industrious, Scientific) (Masonry, Bronze Working)
    -great traits
    -good but late high priced UU

    China (Industrious, Militaristic) (Warrior Code, Masonry)
    -average 2nd trait
    -no horizontal research
    -good fast UU


    Tier Two
    Egypt (Industrious, Religious) (Ceremonial Burial, Masonry)
    -CB is weakest starting tech
    -weak UU with limitations (can’t go thru swamp, wetlands or mountains)
    -Religious can be useful tech if used properly.

    Aztecs (Agricultural, Militaristic) (Pottery, Warrior Code)
    -average 2nd trait
    -weak UU
    -no horizontal research

    France (Industrious, Commercial) (Alphabet, Masonry)
    -good 2nd trait
    -good UU
    -best starting tech

    Byzantium (Scientific, Seafaring) (Bronze Working, Alphabet)
    -great UU
    -best starting tech
    -weakest 2nd trait

    Babylon (Scientific, Religious) (Bronze Working, Ceremonial Burial)
    -great for culture
    -average 2nd trait
    -average UU

    Maya (Agricultural, Industrious) (Masonry, Pottery)
    -great traits
    -UU average
    -no horizontal research

    Japan (Militaristic, Religious) (Wheel, Ceremonial Burial)
    -only civ to start with Wheel which give benefit for early tech trades
    -CB is weakest starting tech
    -good fast UU that doesn’t require horses can defend and attack
    -average traits, militaristic is other crap shoot tech

    Rome (Commercial, Militaristic) (Alphabet, Warrior Code)
    -best starting tech
    -good UU
    -traits are slightly above average together

    Korea (Scientific, Commercial) (Alphabet, Bronze Working)
    -good 2nd trait
    -good UU
    -best starting tech

    Russia (Scientific, Expansionist) (Bronze Working, Pottery)
    -good starting techs
    -Expansionist is crap shoot that is only good for about the first half of Ancient Age
    -average late UU whose special ability needs to be accompanied with artillery units

    India (Commercial, Religious) (Ceremonial Burial, Alphabet)
    -good extra, hit point, no iron UU
    -have best and worst starting techs
    -religious trait is good if used correctly


    Tier Three.
    Inca (Agricultural, Expansionist) (Masonry, Pottery)
    -UU below average
    -no horizontal research

    Zululand (Expansionist, Militaristic) (Pottery, Warrior Code)
    -Pottery 2nd best starting tech
    -both traits are crap shoots that can be great or can be worthless
    -worthless 2 move defensive UU. Only possible value to escort horseman rush?

    Portugal (Expansionist, Seafaring) (Alphabet, Pottery)
    -2 best starting techs
    -worst trait synergy in game. Seafaring worst trait overall
    -worthless UU whose special ability only lasts for about one tech (crossing oceans)

    Spain (Religious, Seafaring) (Alphabet, Ceremonial Burial)
    Alphabet best starting trait, CB is worst
    expensive low value UU
    Seafaring is worst trait

    Mongolia (Expansionist, Militaristic) (Warrior Code, Pottery)
    -Pottery 2nd best starting tech
    -both traits are crapshoots that can be great or useless
    -UU doesn’t require iron, movement over hills and mountains but would rather have one more defense point for 10 more shields

    England (Commercial, Seafaring) (Alphabet, Pottery)
    -2 best starting techs
    -nearly worthless UU, usually build these only to set off Golden age
    -Seafaring is worst trait

    Americans (Industrious, Expansionist) (Masonry, Pottery)
    -Pottery is 2nd best starting trait
    -Expansionist is crap shoot that is only good for first half of ancient age
    -worst UU in game

    Vikings (Militaristic, Seafaring) (Alphabet, Warrior Code)
    -Alphabet is best starting tech
    -Seafaring is worst trait and Militaristic is crap shoot trait
    -expensive UU, needs protected, amphibious assaults, best attack for middle age, doesn’t upgrade

    Hittites (Commercial, Expansionist) (Pottery, Alphabet)
    -crap shoot 2nd trait
    -best 2 techs to start with
    -good value UU

    Carthage (Industrious, Seafaring) (Alphabet, Masonry)
    -good high priced UU
    -best starting tech
    -worst 2nd trait

    Germany (Scientific, Militaristic) (Warrior Code, Bronze Working)
    -late average UU
    -average 2nd tech

    And this is only a guideline. Germany and England could be tier 2 just because I can find 10 civs that are argueable worse, and I'm short of a civ for tier one so Babylon Egypt or Maya could be bumped into tier one (at the bottom of the tier but tier 1 is the best 10 maybe 11 civs).
     
  6. Spoonwood

    Spoonwood Grand Philosopher

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    Seafaring, I simply disagree, does not end up as the worst trait. I think I've said as much in this thread actually. It doesn't have all too much value everywhere, but in *some of* its niches, it basically exceeds all other traits, or comes in a very close second.
     
  7. Zardnaar

    Zardnaar Chieftain

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    Seafaring is a good trait and its better on an expansionistic map than expansionism on an Island map. I rate ir at 2-3 best trait 4th at worst.
     
  8. del62

    del62 Chieftain

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    I think seafaring and expansionist are map and level dependent traits.

    On lower level pangea expansionist can be one of if not the best trait, kicking through the ancient age, on higher level archipeligo seafaring can give you a tech broker position, or with the byzantines a UU that can dominate.

    Obviously random maps can work against these traits.
     
  9. Zardnaar

    Zardnaar Chieftain

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    Large pangea maps can still have alot of coastline though so you can still get some benefit from seafaring trait. Expansionism on a small island is all but useless.
     
  10. Spoonwood

    Spoonwood Grand Philosopher

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    If you have the minimum number of AIs (according to the HoF rulebook), and you can get ships out in time, you can often pop huts not on your home island.
     
  11. Richie0

    Richie0 Chieftain

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    i don't think there is a best civ, exactly.

    however, here is my (short) list of the top 8 in the game, in no order:

    celts
    sumeria
    greece
    persia
    iroquois
    ottomans
    france
    russians

    you'll notice a common theme: agricultural, scientific, commerical, industrious, and (mostly) powerful UUs. why? because these 4 traits are simply better than the other 4. they are consistently good and consistently reliable.

    if i had to pick a worst civ: portugal.

    it has the 2 traits which are the most hit and miss in the entire game, its UU doesn't even quality as a UU, it's that crap, and with the exception of early trading/tech lead and beeline to philosophy, it has nothing going for it.

    every single other civ with either seafaring or expansionist as a trait can do what portugal does, and do it better.
     
  12. CKS

    CKS Chieftain

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    It is interesting that Greece makes your list but Korea does not. They have the same traits, but Greece has the defensive hoplite UU, while Korea has the lethally bombarding H'wacha.

    I play a peaceful builder style, and rarely remember to build H'wachas until it is too late, so you'd think that Greece would be the way to go for me, but I don't like Greece and I really like Korea. Civ preferences are really incredibly subjective. I find that my preferences vary significantly with time, too, even for the same victory condition.
     
  13. vmxa

    vmxa Chieftain

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    I have not used either that often, but a couple of things could be the reason for Greeks over Korea.

    The Hoplite means you can hold your newly gotten towns in the early game, with little to fear.

    It also means you can trigger an early GA, if you need to do that. Korea cannot do either of those things, better than Alex.

    Should you get to the H'wacha in the same position as the Greeks, then Korea is better with its UU at that stage of the game.
     
  14. CKS

    CKS Chieftain

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    For a game with a lot of early warring, sure, having hoplites is very nice.

    If you aren't playing a military game and hoplites get you an early golden age, though, you are not having fun. Colossus + Mausoleum gets either Greece or Korea a golden age just after leaving despotism, should you want an early golden age as a builder, but I'd rather have one later.
     
  15. Spoonwood

    Spoonwood Grand Philosopher

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    In terms of Firaxis score, there exists little question that in the hands of a fully capable player, the Maya can basically outdo anyone (given the same start, of course). I simply fail to see how you left them out.
     
  16. Calis

    Calis on time

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    And who could that player be? :rolleyes:
     
  17. Spoonwood

    Spoonwood Grand Philosopher

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    Moonsinger. Actually, maybe EMan instead. It's a toss up.
     
  18. Richie0

    Richie0 Chieftain

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    completely forgot about the maya

    now that i think about them, they honestly make the game too easy. if i get a good start with the maya i don't even bother playing it; their early expansion makes it predictable.
     
  19. Spoonwood

    Spoonwood Grand Philosopher

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    There's definitely something to that! But, do they make the game too easy for you on higher levels?
     
  20. Richie0

    Richie0 Chieftain

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    i play on regent. which isn't easy or hard, as far as i'm aware? neutral basically.

    chieftan/warlord is just finger exercise. i've tried other levels, like demi-god and deity, but the bonuses put me off them. its not the fact that AI is more challenging, because it clearly isn't.

    it's that they're 'stronger' and 'more difficult' because they've got free units, research/production advantages etc. that's not challenging, that's giving one side an advantage.

    it'd be nice if harder difficulties meant more effective use of units, even just using all the units for variety and unpredictability.
     

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