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Looking for Opinion: Earth18 Egypt

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Strategy & Tips' started by Harv, Nov 25, 2009.

  1. Harv

    Harv Emperor Supporter

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    Hey guys!

    As I always say, I find the Earth18 games fun in that you are building a civilization and fighting wars on a map that looks like Earth. This time I am asking for an opinion on Egypt. Of course, Egypt starts with some very good land and there are lots of options on how to play it.

    (Note: Failing the warrior rush strategy, the lack of metal resources means Egypt is going to be a builder's game.)

    Here is the opinion I am looking for: Does the land around Egypt favor a Specialist Economy or a Cottage Economy?

    There are lots of Flood Plains tiles and lots of unusable Desert tiles. These cities are going to have specialists whether the flood plains are farmed or cottaged. As a bonus, the Egyptian Unique Building allows for two priest specialists.

    On the other side, in the early game, Egypt is going to have health issues. The abundance of food counters the health, but it affects (what I see as) the basic equations affecting the Specialist Economy vs the Cottage Economy.

    I guess the correct way to look at it is to add up all the tiles and make a comparison.
     
  2. vanatteveldt

    vanatteveldt Emperor

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    You have horses and elephants in reach, so there is no reason to disqualify warmongering other than a general lack of strong production sites.

    For a long time, there is absolutely no reason to choose between "SE" and "CE", since you don't have any civic options or other empire-wide choices that favour either. So, pick the most efficient option at any moment.

    Some observations:
    - Early game, happy is going to be a greater problem than health. specialists are not an efficient means of using happy cap
    - Without CS, you will be limited ro ~4 specialists. 6 cottages flood plains give enough food to feed those specialists, assuming happy and health > 10.
    - Priests can be an efficient way to generate some hammers in a desert city if you take into account their total yield.
    - Building pyramids will raise both happy cap and output per specialist, but it won't be easy to get without good production
     
  3. Jaaboo

    Jaaboo Prince

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    Thebes isn't too hard to get the pyramids with, you have stone readily available and between that, the marble and horses along the Nile you'll have enough base production to keep things moving as you whip overflow into the Pyramids. The Pyramids can often go late on Earth-18.

    You don't need to rush, per se, but you should look at settling the Mesopotamian region quickly to confine Cyrus and Saladin. With Hatty's creative bonus, staking a claim along the Tigris and Euphrates will net you several excellent city locations (Baghdad/Babylon, Jerusalem, Tehran and a foothold on Turkey.)
     
  4. UWHabs

    UWHabs Deity

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    How about using both? Cottage some floodplains. Farm others. Especially if you can take out the Arabs and Mali, you have 3 decent sized regions of floodplains to play with.

    In general, I'd prefer cottaging floodplains, since I do find them less efficient to run specialists. But in an ideal world, use the production from the floodplains marble and stone to build the pyramids (after war chariot rushing Saladin and Mansa Musa), and run representation with each of your cities ending up running something like 6 floodplain cottages and 2 scientists and 2 priests, or something like that.
     
  5. Rubbaduck

    Rubbaduck Artificial waterfowl

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    Run all FP cottages(after using some farms to grow), then use the surplus food to run scientists. At 100% slider matured cottages bring similar beaker yields to representation scientists while being food neutral or positive.
     
  6. jamesddd

    jamesddd Chieftain

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    war chariot rush on arabia/persia, then you have several good production sites + metal
     
  7. CarlH

    CarlH Warlord

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    War chariot rush, if done right can nab you arabia, greece and maybe even rome ... and with all those FPs cottage up you'll have sufficient gold to fund a large army/empire.
     
  8. KeloGBites

    KeloGBites Warlord

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    5 WCs is usually enough to take mecca early on, and that site has some pretty good production. Settle jerusaleum, and south a bit to contain the Mali (if you find it neccesary). Then look towards Turkey/Mesopatamia Proper.
     
  9. Harv

    Harv Emperor Supporter

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    Thanks everybody for your replies - I decided to quote the first one because it listed the most points.

    General: I had the impression that each empire in Earth18 gives a unique challenge to learn the game - and that Egypt was designed for buildmongering.

    1. Warmongering: Horses and Elephants - This allows the War Chariots very early in the game and the elephants on Construction. So this strategy means researching Mysticism - Masonry - Animal Husbandry and building a worker and a couple of warriors and an Obelisk and going nuts with war chariots as soon as they become available.

    I now have the impression that if warmongering is an option, it is the best option.

    2. Choice between SE and CE: Here I was assuming that the warmongering strategy was not followed and the other civilizations were allowed to continue to exist but kept out of Africa. Given the pyramids, the SE has full benefits, and the CE benefits when towns are developed for that bonus 1:hammers:. So early pyramids favors an immediate change to Representation, followed by a change to Universal Suffrage when towns are developed.

    Heck with the Spiritual trait, I can change my mind at will.

    3. Happy Cap - In Egypt, that determines the ultimate size of cities. Although specialists are not an efficient means of using the happy cap, when there is excess food and no tiles to use the, specialists are the choice. The argument above is suggesting that cottages on the flood plains is better. Of course, building farms and using the food for specialists when the healthy cap is exceeded is not efficient - so cottages seems to be the better choice.

    4. Caste System - Unfortunately that gets in the way of Slavery. For small cities, the slavery civic allows stuff to be built more quickly in places where you have a lot of flood plains and not much production.

    5. Pyramids - Egypt actually has the early production capability to build the pyramids early in the game - as soon as the stone is available. With stone, the Pyramids cost 250 :hammers: which is about the same as 7 War Chariots and a Barracks.

    It is the Pyramids that brings up the question of SE or CE - I am thinking running Representation shortly after they are built - followed by Universal Suffrage after the cottages mature into towns...... Assuming that the buildmonger strategy is followed. If the warmonger strategy is followed - then I guess I worry about this question when the Pyramids are captured. :lol:

    From the rest of the responses, I get the impression that:

    A) Warmongering is better than buildmongering.

    B) Building Cottages is better than building farms.

    Disclaimer: My level of play is wonderaddicted - I still have to learn that I do not have to build the wonders when I gain a tech advantage. Somebody tell me if I build it, they will come - but if somebody else builds it, then I know who to come after!
     
  10. dalamb

    dalamb Deity

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    Warmongering doesn't exclude wonderspamming -- on Earth 18, where you know in advance which civilizations are close, you can rush some early neighbours with war chariots, then turtle and build until Construction and attack a few more. By that point you're probably big enough to win the game any way you want.
     
  11. Harv

    Harv Emperor Supporter

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    I just started an Egypt game on Earth 18 on Monarch / Normal in Beyond the Sword and am posting an initial save and a save at Turn 75 (1000BC) along with a screen shot. Criticism and advice are both welcome. :)

    Key decisions are as follows:

    1. City Placement: The capital was built to capture the wheat, stone, marble, and horses, and oasis and attempt to reduce the health penalty. The third city will be about 3 tiles east of Upper Egypt to capture the Incense and the Cows and the rest of the Flood Plains.

    2. Research: Mysticism - Masonry - Hunting - Animal Husbandry - Fishing - Pottery - Mining - Bronze Working - Writing - Sailing - and planning to go Mathematics - Calendar. This path sets up all the resources in the capital and starts a whip economy.

    3. Stonehenge: The cost to me was the same as two monuments and it is the unique building for Egypt, so I might as well go for it.

    4. Settled Great Prophet: I did not go after an early religion and decided if I settle him in the capital, at least I get some help with production and financing.

    5. Pyramids: The cost is 250 :hammers: with access to stone and opens the door to Representation and later Universal Suffrage when the happiness problem is dealt with.

    6. Warmongering: Those 250 :hammers: could have bought a barracks and 6.67 more war chariots. As discussed earlier, this is more than enough to overrun Arabia and Persia :eek: and give full access to Mesopotamia and all the metals I need for more warmongering. The decision 5 above tends to favor more and more building.

    Here are is the screen shot and the save. I am kind of tempted to load the 4000BC save and change Decisions 5 and 6 and see how it looks different.
     

    Attached Files:

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