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Links to the Individual Civ Reviews - by Ision

Discussion in 'Civ3 - Strategy & Tips' started by Ision, May 2, 2004.

  1. Optional

    Optional Chieftain

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    I find starting with Alphabet and scouts quite strong. Portugal shares this with Hittites, and they easily get into into a position for striking good deals. They have an advance where it comes to buying slaves and early war diplomacy. I think the strength of the Alphabet - scouts combo got overlooked in the reviews of both civs.
     
  2. Zardnaar

    Zardnaar Chieftain

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    But a few other civs can more or less do this as well. The Portugese don't expand that fast, suck at war, don't have a decent UU, have contradictory traits etc. Any Civ can be decent enough as the traits are gravy IMHO, but what civ is worse than the Portugese?
     
  3. Spoonwood

    Spoonwood Grand Philosopher

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    Consider playing a variant like this...
    1. A map with sedentary barbarians.
    2. You can only win by the histograph.
    3. You cannot train any settlers from your cities.
    4. You cannot capture any cities or accept any via flips.

    The only tribes really in the same class as Portugal come as the Alphabet tribes and perhaps the scientific tribes. Almost all of them can't pop a settler, so they all will research slower than Portugal. The Hittites might appear to come in the same class as Portugal, but lacking a coastal start, they might not get a shot at the Colossus, which means Portugal should get to Sanitation first, so more content and happy citizens earlier. So, which tribe is better than the Portugese?

    Carracks don't come out as weak. As I pointed out in the links above, they make for pretty much the best transport ship to set up specialist farms on an island map. I played the referenced game on a standard sized map. On a larger sized map, such as a Huge map, they work out even better.

    Popping a settler early on makes for faster expansion initially than any agricultural tribe whatsoever. And also starting with Pottery usually makes for faster early expansion than starting with Bronze Working and Ceremonial Burial. The traits also do not contradict each other when you play on a high water archipelago map with the proper barbarian setting and want either a free settler early on, or want to pop late ancient age techs... even up to Deity, as you can pop say Currency and Construction with the Portuguese on an 80% Deity map where you would just get barbies with any other tribe, or not reach those huts in time. See the referenced links.

    Any proposed ranking of the tribes ONLY works given that we specify map settings and desired victory condition. Anything else is either ignorance or propoganda.
     
  4. Zardnaar

    Zardnaar Chieftain

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    Thats a very contrived situation and could eassily be turned around to any civs strength. Assume the rankings are based on a random map, random civ, and random sized world, and up to Emperor difficulty level for a standard game, not SSC or 5CC or whatever. Rereading a few of the civs we did mention that in certain circumstances some civs were a 1st tier civ but overall they were lower or whatever. Some 3rd tier civs are very powerful on certain map types or circumstances.

    The reason we used a 3 tier system was some civs are so close in power its almst impossable to pick a winner and thats why tey weren't ranked 1-32nd or whatever. A large amount of the best civs often had the iundustrial, commercial or agricultural trait combined with a great UU.

    The bottom feeders were ogten expansionist, weak UU based civs. The worst civs are probably Portugal, Hittites, Zulu and Mongolia- as a general rule of course. Soetimes I deliberately played certain situation and discovered a Egyptian feudalism, merchant prince England or whatever could be insanely powerful but it depends on the situation to much. I would rather be a seafaring tribe on a pangea map than a expansionistic tribe on an island map which explains why so many expansionist civs probably rated low, and seafaring is basiaclly broken on island maps due the AI being oblivious to suicide curraghs runs and tech trading humans can do.

    Portugal is a great scouting civ, and its nice but scouting isn't that hard with virtually any other civ and you can almost ignore naval combat in CivIII in any event and the Portugese basically have a tough transport boat. England can dominate the waves alot better than Portugal- think large fleets of enslaved MenOWar cruising round and redlining/milking AI naval units. Hell as England you can be at war with the entire map and be safe behind your MoW fleet of wooden walls. Expansionistic trait frops off in use outside the ancient age and for rapid expansion you can often use the militaristic/industrial/agricultural traits to expand as well, just in a different way. The bonus being those traits are usefull all game on most map type.
     
  5. TheOverseer714

    TheOverseer714 Overseer

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    I am finding Japan to be difficult, even with a good starting location. I would rate them down toward the very bottom, myself. I think seafaring has a slight benefit, as does expansionist, so portugal is a tiny bit better.
     
  6. Zardnaar

    Zardnaar Chieftain

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    Japanese have a good UU though. Helps alot.
     
  7. Spoonwood

    Spoonwood Grand Philosopher

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    Good for what? If you have a decent to mid-sized army of Samurai you can't upgrade them to cavalry. So, other tribes can usually have a larger military of cavalry than Japan. You also can't disconnect-reconnect for upgrades from horsemen to samurai. Sounds like some big disadvantages to me.
     
  8. Zardnaar

    Zardnaar Chieftain

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    You can have the game all but won with your Samurai, Cavalry not needed. There are at least 10 worse civs than Japan though so it makes it into the 2nd tier.
     
  9. Optional

    Optional Chieftain

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    Portugal is a civ with which you must trade, and trading works better on the higher levels. Most players will play on a moderate level, and don't check their trade options every turn.
    This perhaps goes to some extent for the whole expansionist trait. It gives you earlier contacts, but if you don't use those contacts, yeah...

    I would rather encourage players to use that expansionist trait instead of saying the trait isn't good. As soon as you meet another civ, see what they've got, and make sure you're updating your knowledge every turn. Playing with a helper program like CivAssist is a must, otherwise you lose track of your options.
    It's great to be able to snap up some early slaves, and the expansionist trait offers the best chances to do that. Scouting to reveal the map is indeed something every civ can do, but to get a trade advantage specialized scouts or curraghs are indispensable. To meet other civs before they've met each other is very important for making the best tech deals. On higher levels warriors are too slow, but I must admit that on lower levels they might still be fine, as the AI is slower.

    Early wars area speciality of expansionist civs, because of their diplomatic advantage. Again, if you're not using diplomacy much, then you will miss out, but expansionist civs will have better options for alliances, and are more capable of tactics of divide and rule.

    I'm somewhat biased towards Portugal, as it's my favourite civ. I don't disagree if someone says their traits are not complementing each other very well. Portugal is probably best on a fairly large map size, where the mileage of both scouts and boats can be exploited. Pangaea takes something away from the boats, and archipelago takes something away from the scouts, so continents suits Portugal probably best.
     
  10. Spoonwood

    Spoonwood Grand Philosopher

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    Not for every level and every map for sure. If you mean just up to Emperor, how does such information really work out as useful? Last time I checked the game goes up to Sid. You'll have to have iron to conquer with Samurai. If you don't, you can't upgrade your horses later to Samurai. Many of those unnamed tribes you believe worse conquerers than Japan I suspect can conquer faster than Japan using disconnect-reconnect, which you can't do with Samurai. Japan also has no research advantages, save for a shorter revolution and uniquely having The Wheel. I'll give a tribe that has scouts to pop huts and make contacts and the useful tech Alphabet an edge over Japan in a research based game any day. If you do both conquest and research, then Portugal still gets the edge.
     
  11. Aabraxan

    Aabraxan Mid-level Micromanager

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    These reviews work out as very useful for beginning players. I have this sneaking hunch that Sid-level players probably don't need these reviews any more.
     
  12. Zardnaar

    Zardnaar Chieftain

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    And yet a feew deity and sid level players still don't like Portugal. Yes you can find some contrived stuations where it excels but most civs have that benefit. The rviews are sort of an up to emperor level as at the time most people seemed to play on those levels and there were a few deity and sid level strategy artcles done. Portugal probably isn't a 3rd tier civ, I wouild put it in a 4th tier all by itself. Scouting and eaerly contacts only carry you so far. Its impossable to rate every civ in every circumstance on every fidfficulty level as even the ones we done took up alot of work and playtesting.

    Feel free to write your own set of high level civ reviews, but you won't will you???
     
  13. Spoonwood

    Spoonwood Grand Philosopher

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    20k empire-wide games don't come as anymore contrived than a domination game with pre-selected map type and pre-selected opponents. The 20k comes as a built-in victory condition for the game. Check the previously *referenced* games played as Portugal. When you find tribes that can finish better than Portugal did in those situations, then you might have an argument for that tribe as better (in those situations). I could argue for the Byzantines since they have a greater probability of SGLs. I wouldn't argue for Carthage on a sedentary barbie map, since someone else will probably pop Masonry and shoot that as a trading technology for them. I have evidence which supports Portugal as a top-tier tribe in certain non-contrived situations. Where's your evidence that they belong on the bottom tier? Where do you have a faster finish on any of those tables since you supposedly know the game better than I do to the point where you can cavalierly say "Portugal probably isn't a 3rd tier civ, I wouild put it in a 4th tier all by itself. " without evidence to back it up Zardnaar?

    Not specifically just for high level reviews, no. But, I actually started something of a sort of review project back in January. After some considerations it seemed like a rather large project to undertake. So, I asked for help. I did get some insightful and useful comments, but not enough to warrant undertaking as an ambitious of a project as it seems to review all the tribes in a somewhat thorough manner. Make no mistake, any *serious* set of civ reviews which accurately portray the tribes need to *at bare minimum* consider each type of victory condition. Considerting map size, map type (arch 60% vs. arch 80%), topographical type (wet/warm/5 bill vs. cold/arid/4 bill), difficultly level, and barbarian level also come as necessary to some extent, but combinatorial explosion makes that unrealistic to actually do. A division of builder/war monger comes as simply inadequate. A division into all different victory conditions at least more clearly opens the door to the diverse possibilities of this game.

    You can find the review of the Maya I wrote in January here . I only had a day of comments.
     
  14. pat1968

    pat1968 Chieftain

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    Really good reviews, and helped me in picking a civ for pangea...must say, tonight ive been playing the english (archipello, 80% water, huge) and they are fantastic, man o wars are my fave unit ever now ;)
     
  15. Zardnaar

    Zardnaar Chieftain

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  16. pat1968

    pat1968 Chieftain

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    Good article mate, and i am finding it ..almost surreal how much like the real brittania it is to play, good on an island, and prospering through commerce and ruling the seas- and gunboat diplomacy ;)
     
  17. Zardnaar

    Zardnaar Chieftain

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    Bump.
     
  18. Lanzelot

    Lanzelot Moderator Moderator

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    It's still missing 10 years later... As are the links to the Zulu and Vikings reviews:

    The Zulu
    The Zulu
    The Vikings

    Perhaps some moderator could update the first post? It would really be a pity, if this legendary series would remain incomplete...! :)

    (BTW: We have the Zulu twice, but as far as I can see, no review for the Russians exists to date?!)
     
  19. RS8

    RS8 Chieftain

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    I tried playing the Vikings and using them to build stuff, once

    Hilariously awful results

    Like the Zulu or Mongols, straight up war or don't even bother using them
     
  20. Spoonwood

    Spoonwood Grand Philosopher

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    The links here don't seem to have survived the site change. Of course, those articles still exist. Just the links in the first post don't seem to work, or at least the two I tried.
     
    BlackHat likes this.

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