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Liberty AND Tradition (2013 BNW)

Discussion in 'Civ5 - General Discussions' started by TM Moot, Aug 5, 2013.

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  1. sonicandfffan

    sonicandfffan Warlord

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    Saving the four culture buildings is a double edged sword, because you need to take it to get the free aqueducts and the earlier on you get those, the better.

    Finishing tradition is a no brainer for the ability to buy GEs.
     
  2. Calouste

    Calouste Deity

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    It's only really useful if you have a weak capital site. If you have a good capital site, missing out on Monarchy and Landed Elite is just too costly. Monarchy generates enough gold before you hit Radio to buy at least two Broadcast Towers if you have a tall capital. Not that you can't do a lot more useful things with that gold before Radio instead of just having it pile up.
     
  3. Blitz Spearman

    Blitz Spearman Warlord

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    If you make good planing and good management of trade routes (usually giving priority to techs that open new route slots), Tradition can be the most powerful policy in the mid-game after a Liberty start (only other contender is probably Patronage -> Consulates, or Aesthetics if playing some heavy cultural civ).

    The strategy goes something like this:

    First policy is Tradition, for the everlasting culture bonus, and it is not a waste, despite making other policies harder, because you plan to come back later.

    Then, go Liberty > Hammer policy > Settler policy and start that nice and cheap expansion. After that, Worker policy > Golden Age policy > Finish Liberty, because you probably want the culture discount, the Golden Age and the free Great Person early (I usually get a Scientist to plant an academy and make up for the increased tech cost of my expansion). All the while, during these first ~100 turns, you should really focus all of your trade routes on the neighbour that gives you more beakers per turn. The gold is also nice to pay for maintenance of your many libraries and to have a standing army prepared for defence.

    Now is when your empire really takes off: the next rearranging of your Caravans/Cargo Ships around the time when you are finishing Liberty, should show that those amazing 4 beakers/turn from the early routes are now 1~2 beakers/turn (if they are still 4, either you are doing something wrong with your science output, or you are really close to a runaway AI, in which case a war may be a good idea). So, these external trade routes not looking that amazing any more, you should direct all trade routes to give food to your capital. You should have 4 slots and be hard-building an Aqueduct by now, so your capital will go full babyboom in the next turns. So, feeling sad with your gold reserves going away with that negative gpt from the missing trade routes? Do not despair, because next policies are Legalism > Monarchy. It is theoretically easy to use Legalism to get Opera Houses at this point, but realistically, you have so much stuff to build in your capital (including giving a shot at building the Oracle, if you have a hammer-rich terrain, because the AI is soft on this one wonder, and it really helps the strategy), that you are probably going to get Amphitheatres, which is good enough. But the true star of the show is really Monarchy. With a good Liberty start, you will always have as many cities as you have trade route slots, and directing them all to your capital, you get CRAZY growth, while having a very nice happiness control and a new gold source in Monarchy. A relatively fast National College (I usually do it by turn 110~130 at standard speed) is VERY important, because your behemoth capital will be yielding a huge amount of beakers very soon.

    It is the best of both worlds, and not that hard to do.
     
  4. RealHuhn

    RealHuhn Emperor

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    This is the first post I like in this thread. ;)
    You give some good reasons and explain how each policy is useful.

    But I'm still not convinced. If you want to focus on a tall empire, why do you need Liberty? A mix of Tradition and Patronage can boost your food a lot more. Or Tradition and Piety to ensure you get all the additional growth bonuses of an early religion. Or both. Afterall, we are talking about SIX policies we can spend elsewhere. :crazyeye:
    The true selling point of your strategy is based around boosting your capital with internal food trades. You don't need Liberty for that and you severely delay your growth by going Liberty first.

    It's not like you can't expand in a reasonable time with Tradition. And when you build more than 4 cities, which you should do or Liberty is kind of a waste, you will most likely run into happiness problems, even with Monarchy.

    However, I may try this at some point.
     
  5. Blitz Spearman

    Blitz Spearman Warlord

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    Happiness is not a big issue because you will try to get a rate close to 1 lux/city, and don't forget that Liberty has its own source of happiness with the city connections. As you are opening with Tradition anyway, there is enough time for you to scout around and decide if you have access to enough luxuries. Liberty will let you get to those spots with your settlers sooner than your neighbours, this is a valuable advantage. If really you don't feel that you have enough space... well, you can always go for plan b and continue Tradition (although I usually try to solve this space problem by conquering a neighbour around the Medieval Era. Don't forget that puppets also let you use trade routes from them).

    In fact, because I usually succeed in keeping my happiness a few points above zero in the early game, when Monarchy kicks in I get so much surplus happiness that I can even afford to settle a new city on some luxury-less spot, to prepare for when I open up new trade route slots.

    Anyway, I should have mentioned that this strategy is twice as much powerful if you have a coastal start, for obvious reasons. Any civ with a coastal bias is OK, but Carthage gets special mention for the Harbour's synergy with Liberty.
     
  6. troublmaker

    troublmaker Warlord

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    I always end up opening one or the other simply because both are so good for development. If I don't get Liberty full on I'll at least get two points in it so I can grab the faster worker improvements.
     
  7. Wolvenheart

    Wolvenheart Chieftain

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    In almost all cases I believe mixing the two trees is a big mistake. If you're getting deep into both trees before you can open rationalism, it isn't because your culture is fast; it's because your science is slow. By the time you're opening rationalism, and your ideology not too long after, policies in these two trees will rarely be the best option.

    If you're going tradition the finisher is extremely powerful early in the game, as the aqueducts make a substantial difference to growth. People tend to think liberty has a gold and/or hammer advantage over tradition in the early game, but when you look at the free buildings, hammer bonus to wonders (which, if nothing else, will benefit NC), and monarchy/oligarchy, it isn't so clear cut.

    What liberty has going for it is the early expansion. If you're slowing that down by mixing trees, the benefits are too watered down.

    Of course, all of this goes out the window with Poland. I've been experimenting with opening both trees using that civ, but I don't think I'd try it with anyone else.
     
  8. sonicandfffan

    sonicandfffan Warlord

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    You don't have to complete a tree now though, there's not as much benefit to doing so as there was before. It's fine to dip into trees for useful policies without actually finishing the tree.
     
  9. dexters

    dexters Gods & Emperors Supporter

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    Mixing is situational, but like I said Liberty to start (production bonus, worker work speed bonus) is just way too strong to pass up early. I agree if you open Liberty, going all the way makes sense. The finisher free GP also makes it an amazing one that early. You can literally take a pick on any GP you need and the free GE means a near guaranteed wonder.

    Tradition bonuses, especially at the bottom of the tree are better suited for the middle of the game and gives a nice chunk of happiness back from you capital when its size 20+ not size 4.
     
  10. Ulthwithian

    Ulthwithian King

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    While there might be 'not as much benefit', at least for the Trees in question, the benefits are quite good. (I refer to the buying of GEs mainly with Tradition.)

    Indeed, unless you plan (and get) the Reformation belief that allows for purchase of all GP, Culture games really want to be able to purchase GEs...

    dexters: Slight quibble. If you haven't opened a pantheon yet, you cannot get a Great Prophet with the Liberty finisher.
     
  11. dexters

    dexters Gods & Emperors Supporter

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    Well, if you're in the position to buy GE, there's no reason not to finish the Tradition tree. The gold/happiness bonus for the last policy you're missing is likely worth it in of itself.

    I take this discussion is more about how policies are approached in the early part of the game. Not the final half.
     
  12. Ulthwithian

    Ulthwithian King

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    Er, I'm pretty sure the last policy I take in the Tradition tree is almost always the one that makes troops in cities maintenance-free. Gold, yes, but not happiness. ;)

    Edit: I see that now. To be fair, though, I think most people who read that post would jump to the 'and' interpretation and not the 'or' interpretation, since there is a policy in the Tradition tree that gives both.
     
  13. dexters

    dexters Gods & Emperors Supporter

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  14. Wolvenheart

    Wolvenheart Chieftain

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    I completely disagree with this statement. You don't have to finish a tree, and you can justify dipping a little more often, but finishing liberty or tradition is at least as powerful as it's always been, perhaps more so. It is certainly very powerful to finish them early.

    Completely disagree with this, too. There are many ways in which tradition actually makes early expansion easier, up to 4 cities. You can get the happiness bonus out of tradition much easier than out of liberty and the bonus is often higher, you'll often be producing more culture with tradition, and given the two free buildings it's debatable which is actually giving you more hammers--especially when you also add the consideration that the food/growth bonuses from tradition make it more likely for you to be able to work production-rich tiles.

    I'm not saying liberty is bad or that you can't be successful with it; it's a very good tree and in many cases is probably the best choice. But to suggest tradition isn't as strong an opener is just plain wrong IMO.
     
  15. evilcat

    evilcat Warlord

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    As for dipping, there is quite a lot situacions when it is justified:
    Tradicion - Faster border growth is good on its own, either as race with close AI or just avoiding buying important tiles. Buff to building national wonders is also good on its own. If you started Liberty you sometimes may want to postpone GoldenAge, or do not have road network yet.
    Liberty/Piety - Collective Rule + Mandate of Heaven is one of fastest bulletproof faith generator. And then you can finish either of this.
    Exploration - just one dip so you can get Louvre.
    Patronage - Consulates and mass pledge to protect.
    Rationalism - this 10% buff alone.
    Commerce - BigBen and Scyscrappers.
     
  16. dexters

    dexters Gods & Emperors Supporter

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    Tradition works if you really want to go tall and don't care too much about settling a 2nd city early. Also keep in mind Traditions happiness bonus is relatively mild early so you're not getting that much back. Whereas Liberty + GE can overcome any benefits would you have had on tradition. And a lot of traditions bonuses scales nicely when you're much more developed, so I don't consider it a big loss. Whereas not having an early GE to grab an early wonder is gone forever, unless I want to conquer the city that has it :p In which case, I likely would already be going Liberty early if I'm looking to go wide.

    I just find it more situational than Liberty.

    I think we can agree both Liberty and Tradition fully unlocked at some point in the game is pretty strong combo. I don't feel like arguing over what should go first.

    it's situational for sure.
     
  17. Calouste

    Calouste Deity

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    My main criteria for deciding between Tradition and Liberty is the quality of the location of the capital. If it has say 6 resources, some fresh water and some hills, I will go Tradition. If it has 3 resources and not a lot of food potential, I'll go Liberty. In between, it depends on the surrounding terrain and the civ.
     
  18. _hero_

    _hero_ King

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    With the way happiness is now, it's entirely possible to play both tall and wide at the same time if you do it right.
    ---
    Piety and Patronage are both nice but they force you into a playstyle. If you go Piety you HAVE TO focus religion. If you go Patronage you HAVE TO focus city states.

    Both Tradition and Liberty have many policies that benefit you no matter what strategy you go for.

    Tradition:
    - Faster border growth helps every strategy
    - Faster pop growth is always beneficial
    - Less unhappiness and more gold in Capital is always helpful even if only slightly
    - Faster wonders can benefit anyone, so long as they take the time to build a single wonder
    - 4 Free culture buildings and 4 free Aqueducts helps anyone (saves gold and hammers).

    Liberty:
    - Faster workers and a free worker benefits every strategy
    - 1 less unhappiness per 20 pop and 1 less for each city connected by road helps everyone (even a slight boost in a one city challenge)
    - Free golden age helps everyone. Cheaper social policies help everyone.
    - Free Great Person helps everyone
    - +1 hammer and 5% production in all cities helps everyone
    - Free Settler and faster settler production helps tall empires too. That's more time the capital can spend building infrastructure early in the game.
    Most important perhaps, getting off to a fast start makes almost all strategies work better. Liberty is optimum for this in most situations.

    The other policy trees are more targeted. If you can go into a game planning on making full use of Honor/Piety/Patronage/Commerce/Aesthetics and can do so successfully, then chances are they will be superior. But games don't always play out that way. Sometimes you go Patronage and you have Greece/Siam/Austria/Venice in the game making it awfully difficult to keep city state allies. Sometimes you go Piety and end up with a few AIs that go religion happy, severely lowering the gain you get from religion.
     
  19. Blitz Spearman

    Blitz Spearman Warlord

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    Not true, you really get huge amounts of culture overtime by combining both openers (Liberty and Rationalism) with the discount in policies from Liberty. I think most people usually get at least 2 policies between the first policy finisher and unlocking Rationalism. As I said in my long post a few posts ago, I think the optimal way to combining the trees is opening Tradition, completing Liberty and then coming back just for Legalism and Monarchy. That is just 3 policies apart from the early tree, you can consistently do it before entering Renaissance. If anything, there is always the option of getting a GE for Oracle from the Liberty finisher.
     
  20. Matthew.

    Matthew. Deity

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    Picking up a few Tradition policies is worth it just for Monarchy. Pushing capital growth right from turn one makes this the best happiness policy in the game.

    I could see something like combining Monarchy and full Liberty, which I've done plenty of times. Full both seems a bit of a waste though.

    This is, of course, assuming one is picking up both trees ASAP. Coming back later towards the end of the game to finish up one or the other isn't a bad idea.
     
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