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Maya

Discussion in 'Leader Balance' started by DLimited, Mar 5, 2015.

  1. DLimited

    DLimited Warlord

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    (2015-03-01 build):

    UA: Gain a free GP every 394 years after researching Calendar.

    UU: Atlatist - a Composite replacement that's available a tech tier earlier and starts with free logistics promotion.

    UB: Pyramid - Shrine replacement granting 2 Faith and 2 Science.

    ---

    I'm declaring Maya as OP in their current state. There are multiple factors at work here for that, but essentially they are too good at too many things at the same time.

    They gain a faith bonus from Pyramids, ensuring them about double the early Faith income than other Civs. This translates into a faster Religion, so you get a head start on pressure, and you can purchase Missionaries to spread earlier as well.

    The Pyramids also grant 2 Science, and make ICS doable - the early beakers give a free 2 population from a tech perspective, and make it possible to build the Pyramid before Monument because you don't need to grow as quickly or at all in the beginning. Earlier Pyramids also mean earlier Faith income, further snowballing their Religion.

    This, on it's own, adds depth and I like that part. It's this in combination with their other traits that I have problems with.

    First of all, the Atlatist. Not only does it come sooner than a Comp Bow, it also attacks twice. This alone is incredibly strong, both defensively and offensively and you can plan a military strategy around it, and basically just go kill your neighbor, or forward settle with impunity. Here's the kicker though - they can be upgraded and they keep their logistics promotion!. Meaning, you not only get a superstrong early game unit, but for a very minor gold cost you get a midgame unit that's just as strong! Biggest problem I have with that is the fact that they don't obsolete with XBow tech, but with Rifling. So by midgame I can easily hold pushes with my out-of-date UU because I can upgrade them into XBows for a minor gold cost and they instantly become twice as good as a normal XBow (roughly, also you get XP faster so maybe even better than just twice as good).

    Proposed Change: Obsolete them with XBow tech (still Machinery?). Increase upgrade cost.

    Second, the free GP ability. It comes into play way, way too early. Free Scientist at turn 30? Yes please! Free Engineer to get any high impact early game wonder you want without having to invest into it particularily? Yes please! Free Great Prophet to enhance by turn 50, before anyone else has even had time to found a Religion, or the possibility to not pick a strong faith but high utility pantheon and still get first Religion? Yes please! Want to get a free GP of your choice once you've gotten every GP at least once? Hell-the--yeah!

    This UA makes the Maya like BNW Babylon on steroids, because they can do Science and Religion and strong Culture through wide play and strong lategame production through wide play and incredibly defense against any kind of medieval or later attack. Tithe is especially problematic in combination with this, because you can enhance before any of your ICS cities even converts so you get an insane amount of early money and GPT if you also manage to convert only some AI cities or City States.

    Proposed Change: Move the starting technology to Theology to reduce early game impact and snowballing.
     
  2. Llednar Twem

    Llednar Twem Prince

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    I certainly won't claim that the Maya aren't extremely strong...but I WILL disagree vehemently with the idea that they need to be made weaker. The current implementation of the Maya has a UU, UB, UA, and even UDs with E&D that mesh well to produce a civ that's powerful, flexible, and (most importantly) extremely fun to play. I personally see that as ideal, not problematic. If anything, I'd call the current Mayan implementation the standard to which other civs should be held to going forward. They're just that well designed as they are.
     
  3. DLimited

    DLimited Warlord

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    On the flip side, other civs have more defined strengths and weaknesses. I can't find a single weakness to exploit against Maya. If you play against Maya, when would you say is the best time to attack them?

    I don't play with E&D, so I can't comment on that, sorry.
     
  4. Llednar Twem

    Llednar Twem Prince

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    I imagine that would depend on what civ you were using? Off the top of my head...Greece, Assyria, the Huns, and Carthage (If the Mayan cities are coastal) could probably all overwhelm the Maya with their UUs before Atlatls even become available. Actually, you mentioned not having E&D, so Carthage might not be able to. It's hard to say. Really it's more just that with E&D Carthage can just wipe out any coastal neighbor with ease.
     
  5. Llednar Twem

    Llednar Twem Prince

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    I figured I might as well make a more formal post of this suggestion here rather than leaving it to get mixed up in the new version's thread:

    The recent change causing the atlatlist to loose its double-attack ability when upgraded makes the "Improve out Atlatls" decision tremendously less desirable. As such, I propose a change where instead of transforming your atlatlists into crossbowmen, the decision gives the atlatist an RCS boost. This would give the player a choice between upgrading to something more sturdy, or continuing to produce the high damage but easily killed improved atlatlist. It would also have an added drawback in that the longer you wait to upgrade, the higher the eventual cost of modernization will be. Continuing to produce atlatlists until the volley gun becomes available, for example, will mean all of those units have to upgrade through the crossbowman stage fist.

    As for why I'm requesting this change here instead of to the E&D developer? It's because the CBP atlatlist is essentially an entirely different unit from the vanilla one, so a change to the decision that effects them to reflect that seems reasonable.
     
  6. Opera

    Opera Deity

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    I have to concur that their ability to get a religion so early is a bit strong. It gives them a tremendous headstart in spreading it. They can generally get one before 3000 BC at Epic speed while other civs won't get one till the 1500 BCs at the earliest.

    That said, I don't know what could be done. They are indeed very fun to play, very strong, though I don't know if they are overwhelmingly so. Pushing back their Long Count to Theology would be a huge nerf (and Calendar is very thematic).

    This is a problem because I really think getting a religion this early is too strong in many ways.
     
  7. Funak

    Funak Deity

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    Yeah I've been thinking about this since the long count was moved. Moving it back to theology would be insane, honestly, moving it to philosophy or drama and poetry wouldn't make any sense.

    Not letting them pick a Prophet on the first cycle would be an unreasonable nerf as well. Really hard to do anything about tbh.
     
  8. Gazebo

    Gazebo Lord of the Community Patch Supporter

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    It is tough to balance that, yeah. We could make it so that you can't get Great Prophets through the Mayan Calendar thing unless you already have a religion, but that feels a bit arbitrary.

    G
     
  9. Opera

    Opera Deity

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    Yes, the arbitrary side of this option annoys me as well. As ecgopher said in the religion thread, that'd be solved if you used the first prophet to found a pantheon instead, but I don't know what I think about this idea yet.
     
  10. Funak

    Funak Deity

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    They would still be 200 faith ahead of everyone else even if that was the case.
     
  11. DLimited

    DLimited Warlord

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    After my game yersterday, playing multiplayer with my best friend - him as Maya, me as Inca - I have to reiterate: current Maya are still severely overtuned.

    Long Count bonus made it so he had an Enhanced Religion by turn 28. That is way, way sooner than other civs can even found a religion at all. This means they are free to pick whichever beliefs they want, in whatever combination they like. Pyramids also give them a very nice science edge - I have top crop yield (166 vs his 120) and he is still very much ahead in science (my 49 vs his ~78). A large part of that is his two academies (liberty finisher and long count), but if he wanted to double down using Science follower belief and the science yield building, there would be no way anyone can keep up. This means an insurmountable tech lead, earlier better units for military dominance and a conquerored neighbor, so more cities and land and a won game.

    One more thing, long count also synergises with Liberty GP culture in such a way that at one point he had 4 Policies in Liberty when I had 2 in Tradition. Another thing in their favor.
     
  12. Gazebo

    Gazebo Lord of the Community Patch Supporter

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    My solution will be in next version: Maya will be unable to purchase a great prophet with their baktun bonus if they do not already have a religion founded.

    G
     
  13. Opera

    Opera Deity

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    Sounds like the best possible solution. Looking forward to it!
     
  14. Funak

    Funak Deity

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    Not really a fun solution, but I can't say that I see a better solution. Maybe just restricting them from picking a Prophet on the first cycle, or just not letting them pick anything on the first cycle would be better, but I'm not sure.
     
  15. Llednar Twem

    Llednar Twem Prince

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    Aren't the Maya supposed to be kind of religion / science themed anyway? They were added in G&K, and their UB is a shrine that gives science and extra faith. Getting a fast religion seems on-theme to me. Also, if you're picking a prophet in the first cycle, that means you're NOT picking a scientist or engineer. That's a rather significant opportunity cost for the early game.
     
  16. Opera

    Opera Deity

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    There's a difference between fast religion and getting a religion before most civs get a pantheon. As you said, they have a faith UB and that's really enough, IMO, to get them a fast religion. And in my experience, the AI always picks a prophet anyway.
     
  17. Stalker0

    Stalker0 Baller Magnus

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    Coming a little late to the party, but having gotten my first taste of the Mayan, I will echo that they are extrememely strong. The UA adjustment Gazebo has mentioned is a good one, though I will say that everything about them is nice.

    UB - +2 science/+1 faith on top of the shrine is really nice. Other than portugals +2 science on a trade route I think this is the earliest extra science you can bag right now, which drives a lot of the rest of the game.

    UU - This unit I found to be pretty darn strong. They compare favorably even compared to xbows, and all the extra Xp they get from the multiple attacks helps them promote competitively once they do have to upgrade.

    UA - Always a fun one. Beyond the GP, for fun sometimes I get a Great Admiral first off. Because they can explore all tiles, you can circum navigate the Globe in the BC era and meet all of the civs long before anyone else.
     
  18. skitter

    skitter Chieftain

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    Maya vs. Babylon comparison
    =====

    UA - Maya gets a free GP every 394 years after researching calendar. Babylon gets a free great scientist once they have writing. So Mayans, if they so choose, can have great scientist before Babylon and then get 10 more great persons in the early game.

    UB - Pyramids for 2 faith/2 science vs. Walls of Babylon. Pyramids are much stronger.

    UU - Bowman vs Atlatlist. Atlatlist is strictly better.
    ====

    I am not advocating one or the other, but I think either Mayans should be nerfed or Babylon buffed.
     
  19. Funak

    Funak Deity

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    Man, you're either extremely partial or extremely ignorant :D


    Babylon gets +50% GS generation and +15% production bonus production on investments (Which is the same effect you get from 'Division of labor' which is one of if not the most powerful policies in the game)
    Maya does not.


    The Pyramid is actually a lot weaker than the walls of babylon, in fact the pyramid is probably the worst UB in the game at the moment.
    A quick comparison of what the UBs gives vs what the building they replace gives.

    Pyramid:
    +1 faith/turn
    +2 science/turn

    Walls of Babylon:
    +3 city-defense
    +25 city health
    +scientist slot.

    The +3 city-defense pretty much translates to +1 happiness for the majority of the game.
    The +25 city health is a powerful stat only available on a few buildings.
    +1 scientist is a scaling science-boost that has great synergy with your UA.

    Meanwhile the pyramid gets +3 flat yiels, both of them having rather terrible scaling, making the pyramid pretty much a non-factor after the medieval era.


    This is a lot harder of a comparison, the Bowman is extremely good at what it does, it has a lot better combatstrength and ranged combatstrength and indirect fire is a monster of a promotion in the right terrain. Giving you the ability to exploit the enemy defenses, hills and jungles work for you instead of your your enemy, you can attack over mountains.

    On the other hand attacking twice is also really powerful.
     
  20. Funak

    Funak Deity

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    Initial thoughts about the Kuna.

    First of all, lets get the overly positive things out of the way.
    • It was a great idea, I still feel that a change similar to the one the Steele received could have worked just as well, but this was a great initiative.
    • It looks awesome, honestly, as far as looks go, this is probably one of the most awesome things ever, huge props to that guy who made it.
    • It is pretty unique, I don't think any other UI focuses on faith or science.


    Okay, now on to things I think might pose a problem:

    First of all it takes forever to build, I think it's double the build-time of the Brazilwood camp. I actually was planning on a religion-rush using it because of had a heavy jungle start, so naturally I rushed the required tech, built 3 workers and a settler in my capital, places the workers in strategic locations and once I hit construction I started building.
    I was building Kuna with 3 workers constantly, not even stopping to improve resources around my capital, just building more settlers and more kuna with my 3, later 4 workers. All this and I still almost lost out of the last religion because of the extremely slow buildup.

    Second. The placement requirement is REALLY harsh. I started in a jungle and I still can't fit more than an average of 2 per city, a lot less than most other unique improvements. This honestly isn't all that bad, the game would look really weird with pyramids on every tile, no matter how Aesthetically pleasing they are. However when combined with my third point this is a problem.

    Third: The yields are really not impressive. They are unique, for sure, but that's really the most they have going for them. Normally I don't see a problem with this, but combined with how few of them you can place per city, you really don't end up with very impressive numbers.


    Please note that both the second and third point could be bias because I'm frustrated about the first point.
     

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