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[BTS] Looking to improve- Emperor Shadow Game

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Strategy & Tips' started by CTG16, Sep 29, 2020.

  1. CTG16

    CTG16 Chieftain

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    Hey everyone long time lurker, first time poster here. A bit about me real quick:

    I've been playing Civ 4 on and off since around BTS came out ("playing". I was 9 when it came out so i'm not sure if you would call world builder spamming tanks on settler "playing"). Only in the past two or three years have I started actively trying to improve, which this forum has helped me with a lot. Have started to reach a bit of a plateau now around the emperor to immortal jump. My goal is to eventually be able to win consistently on deity, so I have a fair ways to go still.

    Anyways here's the start of the game:
    Spoiler Start :

    Pangea map, no huts, no events, standard size, normal speed, emperor difficulty.
    upload_2020-9-29_21-3-24.png

    As far as this start is concerned I am thinking I will move the scout 2s of the scout to the plans hill and see if there is anything important there otherwise I will settle in place. Curious to hear what others think or if I'm missing something, but from my experience (or lack there of) this seems fairly straight forward.


    For this game I decided to play as Catherine simply because she is a favourite leader of mine (dunno why I just enjoy playing her) and she doesn't have financial or philosophical which are both traits I have used as crutches for bad gameplay before. My plan is to play 10 turns or so a day depending on what is going on in the game and then let it sit for the day so I can get the most feedback possible. I am flexible on this if others have better suggestions.

    That's enough ramblings for me now looking forward to hearing from the experts.
     

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    SittinDown likes this.
  2. Jellybug

    Jellybug Warlord

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    welcome to the forum CTG. lots of good, knowledgeable peeps here. plus me ;) and booooy im rusty

    i move the scout SW, then SE, ending on that plains hill 2S. who knows maybe a corn or gold around there or something could warrant a move to the river. barring a great find, i settle in place. good labor pump with the two cows and elephant and extra hammer from hill, can get the river settled soon enough with IMP trait. this kind of cap can get you 4 cities by 2000, easy
     
  3. CTG16

    CTG16 Chieftain

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    Hmm I didn't think of moving SW first then going SE. Does that add any extra vision though? I thought the hill would give vision on all of the tiles that the SW move would as well. Also as another idea would there be any merit to moving the scout NE onto the grass hill and get vision north of our start? I don't really see a good way to move the settler in that direction even if there was better land that way so maybe that's why that might be a subpar scout move. Assuming settle in place I'm thinking AH into BW for first techs since we start hunting and mining. @Jellybug is the 4 cities by 2000 still alternating between settler and worker?
     
  4. scheines

    scheines Warlord

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    Welcome to the forum!

    I believe you’re correct - the hill would reveal the tiles. But, it’s a good habit to get into to move one tile at a time early game when there is lots of fog and unknown tiles. There can be barbs, etc. and you want to have as much info as possible before each move.

    Agreed on the leader - she’s no HC or Elizabeth, but still decent. If you really want to test your abilities on a difficulty, play Toku; he has no economic traits whatsoever.

    I would also get on that hill with the scout, then either SIP or one tile east. It comes down whether you want to save the forest at the cost of 1T of production/research. I would personally move 1E because you save the forest you’re on, and gain 3 more in the BFC in those tiles to the east (you can zoom in and see their perimeter to tell they are forested). Those 4 forests will more than make up for the lost turn IMO.

    Sometimes settling on ivory is nice for the extra hammer, but here, you’d lose a cow, which might be your only other food. And, moving here would devalue teching AH, which is seems like you’re going to have to do first. While on the subject, I think AH first makes sense: it’s your only food.

    Another minor reason to move is the PH your scout will be on. That could be a decent city to start cottaging in a bit, would be a shame to kill that tile as a city site. Though, this is very secondary to the above points.
     
  5. SittinDown

    SittinDown King Supporter

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    • I think I'd move the scout 2 S to the PH. The reason is - I just don't think knowing what is north of the Grass hill is likely to change my settling decision, but it's possible if there's wet corn or pigs down by that PH near the flood plains, that I'd want to settle there instead.
    • I would also probably move 1E rather than SIP (barring the scouting to the South). You keep all the food tiles, and gain at least 2 grass river.
    If you go directly S -> S you won't get to see the tile 2 W of the scout (i think).
     
  6. lymond

    lymond Rise Up! (Phoenix Style!) Moderator Hall of Fame Staff

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    Scout move here is pretty irrelevant to decision making, so I'd just move him West 2 tiles - just try to meet AIs faster for possible bonus.

    1E is tempting just on the outside chance of gaining a new resource, although at quickly glance it looks like maybe only one tile with possible resource in fog. I'd have to fog gaze closer. But otherwise may not be worth losing a turn for that move since you are already on a PH. (you would save a forest).

    I'd do the 5 turn de-select tech thing here just to see if may be worth going AG before AH. I'd be inclined to do that anyway as one would likely farm this city rather than cottage due to low food. But AG+Hunt gives bonus to AH. With ivory to work you should have no idle worker turns here.

    Welcome back, Jellybug!
     
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  7. Pangaea

    Pangaea Rock N Roller

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    Think I'd move the scout 2SW or 2W, to take a look at the FP area, and maybe meet an AI. Don't like that capital location, but are you gonna do.. If it wasn't for losing the green cow, I'd be tempted to settle on the ivory. As it stands, I suppose you're best off just settling in place, then looking to settle either towards the west or east, depending on what the scout and warrior(s) find there.
     
  8. CTG16

    CTG16 Chieftain

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    I think I like just moving to the west like @lymond and @Pangaea said. Realistically the scout isn't very relevant to my settling and I probably won't find much of worth going straight to the plains hill. I decided to move the scout SW first and the SW again as I think this reveals the most tiles. Might be wrong about that. Anyways this actually ends up revealing some interesting stuff.
    Spoiler Scout move :

    upload_2020-9-30_18-53-15.png
    Guess I'm eating my previous words. This looks like it has the potential to be a strong bureaucracy capital if I'm not mistaken. So now the question stands is it worth moving all the way over here or just settle in place and make this my second city? The problem is to settle there would take 2 moves so my gut instinct is that it isn't worth it. Normally, I would make this a second city and settle in place, but some people seem to be of the opinion that this starting spot isn't as good as I thought it was originally (imperialistic with lots of production can make for a lot of quick settlers giving me early land grab). Am curious to hear what the masses think now.
     

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  9. SittinDown

    SittinDown King Supporter

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    My thoughts: Probably SIP is the faster start still. Beuro cap is good - but there's no forests or hammers over there, and the Rice is dry for a while. I had suggested settle 1E, but others have pointed out that the extra turn isn't worth the loss of the forest, and that seems reasonable - when I said that before I didn't realize you were on a PH. I thought it was flat.
     
  10. sampsa

    sampsa Ghost

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    I'd go 1E, catches 4 more forests and slightly better tiles overall (more river, less hills).
     
  11. CTG16

    CTG16 Chieftain

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    I'm curious about the difference between settling in place vs settling 1E so I decided to settle both of them and do nothing further in the game except view what the capitals will look like.
    Spoiler Settle in Place :

    upload_2020-9-30_21-46-58.png
    Keep in mind this is when the capital has it's first border pop (turn 3) which is 1 turn earlier than the 1E move screenshot.

    Spoiler Move 1E :

    upload_2020-9-30_21-49-22.png
    Turn 4, one turn behind the other screenshot, both at border pop.

    To sum it up we give up 2 grass hills, a plains hill, a grassland tile, and a forested grassland tile for 1 turn, 2 riverside forested plains, 2 riverside forested grasslands (assuming the top grassland is still riverside I can't unsure if that counts or not), a forested plains hill instead of an unforested plains hill and an unforested plains tile.
    Maybe I am undervaluing the 1 turn move cost here but I am inclined to say that 1E is better as it gets us 4 more forests and more riverside tiles while only really losing hills. Am I wrong in this judgement?
     

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  12. sampsa

    sampsa Ghost

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    Grassland on top of the river is not riverside. I'm not sure anymore if I even prefer 1E, but I don't think it's a huge deal either way. Saving one turn wins one turn of everything the capital generates: 5:hammers:11:science: (one is the hidden :science:) and worker is out 1T earlier and some snowballing effect. More forest means faster 3rd city I guess though.

    edit: oh, a small bonus is that 1E makes the ph west of capital free to be settled on. Maybe that tips the scales in favor of 1E.

    I guess you are going agri just for giggles, AH is certainly best.
     
  13. CTG16

    CTG16 Chieftain

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    Oh I'm definitely going AH first the agri in the screenshot is just a filler from clicking a random tech. Neither of those I kept I didn't do any scouting or anything the whole point was to view the 2 potential capitals easier and then decide which one seems better for learning purposes. Once that decision is made I will actually play it out scouting properly and teching AH first. The only save of this game I have is still the 4000 B.C start.

    Your comment about opening up the other plains hill with the 1E move is an interesting point @sampsa . I'm starting to think that 1E is the better option for sure.
     
  14. lymond

    lymond Rise Up! (Phoenix Style!) Moderator Hall of Fame Staff

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    I'm more inclined to think the 1E isn't worth the trouble, but the most interesting point is sampsa's on the PH site with rice/fps. I suspect this site my very well share a strategic resource with Moscow as well.

    I had earlier advised going AG first for the bonus, as I think Moscow will likely be farmed as well. Depends on the timing of things as your worker is faster on the PH. But I think AG first has some merit.
     
  15. Fippy

    Fippy Mycro Junkie Queen

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    Agri first would be :confused::spear::hammer::hammer2:
     
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2020
  16. CTG16

    CTG16 Chieftain

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    @lymond What would be the plan going Agri first? It would come out 3 turns before my worker so I would have to spend time farming a tile or two before AH is up. I'm not familiar with how much agri will reduce the cost of AH but normally AH and worker finish at the same time. Would agri not slow me down a lot off of the start just to save a few beakers? I was under the impression that you should always prioritize your getting your strongest food tile online asap.
    Edit: Just realized I forgot about the ivory. Hmm so go ivory first with worker then go for AH and see how it lines up? That's an interesting idea although I think that I would still have some "idle" worker turns where I would be farming a river tile instead of a useful resource. Might try an opening of both openings just to see which one works best.
     
  17. CTG16

    CTG16 Chieftain

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    Ok did some quick experimenting with going agri first @lymond . The worker comes out when we are 8 turns off of AH. 4 turns for a camp on ivory leaves us with 4 turns to build a farm and then head over to the grassland cow.
     
  18. lymond

    lymond Rise Up! (Phoenix Style!) Moderator Hall of Fame Staff

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    Yep, you should prioritize the strongest food first which is further accented here by cows being very strong tiles for IMP settlers.

    I'm speaking more I guess of personal pref here, and timings, with HUNT starts, if AG would have some value to tech first. I have clearly been chastised by her highness for this idea ;) :lol:

    I think each prereq provides a 20% bonus on the linked tech. Someone can correct me if I'm wrong. But the bonus does not outweigh being able to get the strong tiles up faster.

    I did suspect the worker would finish before AH finishes...but not sure without testing this myself. One could put some turns into the ivory and then move to the grass cows in time for AH to improve immediately. It's a little awkward though with the locations. If AH does time well with the worker then AH first is no question the best thing. Another option maybe is to delay the worker by queuing a warrior so you can pop the worker as AH finishes, the put a turn into plains cow, then complete grass cow.

    Also, the one major flaw with AG is that it would delay BW that much more

    edit: yep...that is what I had in mind, but my error again is the delay on BW and, ofc, ultimately the delay on improving cows.

    Remember, either way, step onto plains cow and put a turn into pasture as you move to grass cow, which is best tile.
     
  19. CTG16

    CTG16 Chieftain

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    It was an interesting thought. I don't consider ideas like that ever when concerning the starting techs, and while it's probably not relevant in the majority of starts it's something to keep in mind for me in the future.

    So AH first is the general consensus. What about sip vs 1E? Both look good to me, too close for me to be able to tell which is better if there even is a clear better between the two. I'm hoping to play until my worker is out and then get the discuss about the worker turns going soon as I know this is one of my worst areas in this game (topped only by diplomacy imo) and it's probably going to have a lot of posts and questions from me.
     
  20. Fippy

    Fippy Mycro Junkie Queen

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    :) Research discounts are a good thing, so nice reminder.

    I could see myself going AH - Wheel here. So much production already, and road(s) are needed for city connection here (Cap not on a river).

    I like Sampsa's idea of 1e, better tiles and expansion will be fast anyways with such a high :hammers: start + IMP.
     

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