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keeping up with expansion

Discussion in 'Civ3 - Strategy & Tips' started by pansophy, Nov 2, 2001.

  1. pansophy

    pansophy Chieftain

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2001
    Messages:
    44
    How is everyone fairing with getting enough cities early on? Everytime I play the reply, other civs have about double my civs. By the time I have established 2 cities, most other civs have 3 and a 4th one pops up before I can get a 3rd down. When I have 3 in place, some civs have 5 or 6.

    I'm not doing anything else other than building warriors and settlers, perhaps a temple if I don't have enough population yet.

    HELP!
     
  2. Attilla

    Attilla Chieftain

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2001
    Messages:
    11
    You know that having a billiion cities without getting your culture rates high and fortifying each of them is nothing. (many of your cities will be taken over by other civs if you're not playing in the baby mode(chieftain or warlord) of the play.
    :nuke: So, have at least 20-30 cities each being fortified and have these things in each cities' inventory: Temple, barracks(if you're not a philiantrophic) have some of the wonders useful for you such as The Great Library, have granaries in cities you feel that might suffer from starvation (cities built in deserts or else)
    So, these are my opinions. Do what the hell you wanna do but, be careful about your cities and keep on expanding (if you have nothing to build in your queue, build settlers or military units)
     
  3. Ironikinit

    Ironikinit Prince

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2002
    Messages:
    409
    Location:
    Michigan
    Well, I hope I'm not insulting you by asking this question, pansophy, but are you letting your cities grow a bit between settlers? Settlers and workers both require population, of course, and sometimes new players make the mistake of trying to build a settler before their city is ready... What happens is that the city remains at one turn left to build the unit until the population hits two or three, depending.

    Other than that, exploration is a key to me during early expansion. If I have a choice between a city site with a luxury or one with cattle, I'll go for the cattle. High food production comes in handy, esp. if there's also a forest or something in the radius.

    A typical first city build queue for me might go: warrior, warrior, wealth (for a couple turns until x = y where x is turns to population three and y is turns to build settler), settler, barracks, settler, temple, settler.

    It really is hard to keep up with the AI in expansion, but staying close is all that you really need. If you're a couple cities behind then you're in good shape, IMO. I'm usually behind my rivals until fairly late in the game.
     
  4. Sir Yelof

    Sir Yelof Chief Gaming Officer

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2002
    Messages:
    62
    I've definitely been seeing a standard build path for the start the game. I'm currently tackling Emperor level on small maps and it's crucial not to waste any time in expansion.

    99 times out of 100 you build the capital city wherever you start on your first turn. At most maybe move one square after you move your other unit(s) to see if there are resources nearby.

    Then I think it goes warrior, warrior, settler, while your worker mines the square you're working. You should basically end up with reaching pop 3 at or near the same time the settler is ready to go. Meanwhile, that first warrior should get out there and explore for that next build spot, relatively close to your capital. On Emperor you may need that second warrior to stay behind.

    Your new city goes through the same process, possibly making a pikeman and/or a temple first to bide the time while you wait for it to grow to pop 3. Meanwhile your capital repeats, or builds a barracks and some military units depending on contact with other civs.

    Disadvantages of this strategy: your capital city never grows very big and gets up to massive production levels. You need to make up for it with judicious use of your worker at your new cities. The other disadvantage is that you are focusing on establishing cities close by -- some people prefer the "outward-in" expansion that establishes your farthest borders first and then fills in the space in the middle afterwards. I find that on Emperor I don't have time to do that.

    But work on optimizing that path to settlers so that you get them build when you reach pop 3 and you'll be able to stay close to the enemies in terms of city spreading...

    --Yelof
     
  5. Zur

    Zur Freaky lozur with spikes

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2001
    Messages:
    378
    Location:
    Punk Rock Heaven
    Which difficulty are you on? If above regent, the AI has a production advantage and so WILL expand faster than you initially. You may consider rushing production but if you are not playing despot rush, I'm not sure that the current benefits will outweigh future negatives. The key is to consistently beat the AI in other tactical and strategic decisions and hence catch up from the initial disadvantage. With experience you will realise that the AI is actually quite stupid! :D
     
  6. Zachriel

    Zachriel Kaiser

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2001
    Messages:
    2,294
    Location:
    Jovian System
    Build a settler at every opportunity. Don't stop until your entire region is filled. Then, and only then, build temples.
     
  7. rdomarat

    rdomarat Spearmen can beat Tanks!

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2001
    Messages:
    216
    Location:
    Waterloo, Ontario
    IMHO, granaries are the key to an early expansion. My initial build queue for the capitol and first few core cities is :

    warrior
    granary
    settler
    spearman
    settler
    worker (must build roads!)
    temple
    settler

    You have to research Pottery first if you're not expansionist and start building a barracks or temple in your capital and then switch to a Granary as soon as you get Pottery. Sometimes, with a high-shield capital to start, I'll pump out a few warriors to go exploring before the granary.

    My outlying cities, which will suffer more from corruption have the following initial build queue :

    warrior
    temple
    spearman

    You'll find that the other civs might have three cities before you build your second, but the settlers start coming out faster than you can handle it once your first four of five cities are founded and all have granaries. When I look back at the replay after the game, I'll have 20 cities and most of the AI will have 10-15 cities. I also find that the two defenders in each city is enough to keep the AI at bay for a while during your expansion phase.

    This isn't a strategy for every player. There are lots of things you miss out on :

    1) Can't really do an initial horseman or swordsman rush to wipe out a rival civ early on.
    2) You pretty much have to give up on Ancient Era wonders.

    Once you've finished your initial expansion and you're stopped by Oceans and other civs, start building defensive units to protect yourself better. Send your first defensive untis to the outlying cities first, and prepare yourself for an all out attack when you get Chivalry (or Military Tradition if you feel like waiting).

    This strategy is a sure-fire way to win on Regent and lower, but I haven't tested on higher levels. The AI might be moe aggressive and might decide to steam roller your cities early on.
     
  8. Zachriel

    Zachriel Kaiser

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2001
    Messages:
    2,294
    Location:
    Jovian System
    Interesting. I rarely build the granary unless my capital has food bonues. Just goes to show how many available strategies there are, even during the initial expansion.

    You must play larger maps.

    I almost never build ancient wonders, either.
     
  9. petey

    petey Prince

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2002
    Messages:
    569
    Location:
    Atlanta, GA, USA
    My starting queue goes like this:

    Warrior
    Warrior
    Settler
    Spearman
    Settler
    Temple
    Settler

    Send each of the warriors in a different direction. Use them to explore the area and clear out any barbarians that are around. Have the settlers build new cities as close to the capital as possible without overlapping their areas. For their build queues I put:

    Spearman
    Settler
    Temple
    Settler

    After this, start building workers and military units. I generally get about five or six cities without any trouble, except when barbarians are problematic, then I have to adjust to deal with them by sacrificing a settler for whatever the top military unit I can build is.

    The key to the ancient age is territory. On the higher levels, you need to grab it early to be able to compete against the AI. Forget the ancient wonders - you can't out produce the computer and you're just slowing down your expansion. Let the other civs buld them and then take their cities.
     
  10. gzollinger

    gzollinger Chieftain

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2002
    Messages:
    24
    I build nothing but warriors and settlers for a long time to start most of my games. I never have a size 4 city until I have at least 7-9 cities. The most important thing I can say about expanding is to focus first on getting to the resources FIRST don't worry about productive cities, just get to those resources! This is most important on Monarch or above. Usually the first to techs I try to get are the wheel and iron working. It allows me to grab available resources with cites before the computer gets them. It can make a HUGE difference in the early game if you get the only horse between you and your nearest neighbor. And those diamonds you sent your settler 30 moves from your capital to procur will do wonders in the middle and late game. The fact is only a couple of your cities will be valuable for production early, the ones that won't you just as well have sitting on top of luxuries! Plus on a standard size map, the computer isn't going to build next to your capital anyway, so you can drop a city there when the resources are all procured.
     

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