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Mid-game city build order

Discussion in 'Civ5 - Strategy & Tips' started by Plumfairy, Jan 21, 2016.

  1. Plumfairy

    Plumfairy Prince

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    I wanted to get folks' opinions on your preferred build order for cities that you found in the mid-game. I often found at least one city in this situation, and on large maps (which I've been playing a lot of recently) I seem to found many more than 1. And when the building queue presents me with a long list of unbuilt buildings, I kinda flail around.

    I know, the true best answer is "depends on the situation", but let's assume it's a "typical" city in a "typical" empire, meaning:

    1) It's on a river and founded on top of a hill.
    2) It's not next to a mountain or a coast
    3) The terrain around it is evenly split between grassland & hills. (I.e. The terrain itself doesn't dictate that the city desperately need either food or production)
    4) We don't have a religion & therefore don't need any religious buildings
    5) We've researched all the Renaissance era techs.

    Given all that... what do you prioritize? Myself, I tend to build Monument, Granary, Watermill, (unless the city is getting food from a trade route or Maritime city state), Workshop, Colosseum, (unless I'm swimming in excess happiness), Aqueduct, marketplace, and then I start working my way through the science buildings.

    But like I said, I'm not at all sure that that build sequence is any good. I've seen some people mention that they build the science buildings right after the monument, others have suggested that growth should be focused before anything else, then science is next most important.
     
  2. beetle

    beetle Deity

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    I may found a city mid game if find an available Natural Wonders or critical strategic resource. My priority then tends to be that the city not hold up National Wonders. So I like your build order. As far as science buildings go, I usually stop at University for a long while because -- for the late city only -- things like Opera Houses and even Police Stations end up being road blocks.
     
  3. GenuineRisk

    GenuineRisk Warlord

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    Why settle that city to begin with then? I don't see how you gain anything from it.
     
  4. Plumfairy

    Plumfairy Prince

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    I'm not sure I understand. A city founded in, say, the mid-Renaissance starts being a net benefit to my empire by the mid-Industrial age, although I usually get new cities up to speed a little faster by devoting a trade route to them, or possibly by buying a Workshop as soon as they're founded.

    So... from mid-Industrial & later, I end up gaining lots of science, hammers (for military or whatever), and so on. Plus you get the benefit of whatever resources & luxuries are there. A nice side benefit is that you prevent the AI from settling there. Assuming the city location is decent, why *wouldn't* you settle there?
     
  5. Primacide

    Primacide Settler

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    I can only speak for myself, but your build order looks fine. I prioritize food first in late cities followed by science. I would only suggest that you plan ahead economically. I don't plant late cities unless I can rush buy at least the granary and aqueduct. These are critical to catching up. Also, swing your workers out and just mob the city in terms of land development. Your first citizens should all be working +4 food tiles, so I wouldn't count on homegrown production for awhile.
     
  6. Nigel_Tufnel2

    Nigel_Tufnel2 King

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    I like your build order. I always buy an Aqueduct in a late expo and get a food route ASAP, or if there is an abundance of food, then perhaps a production route instead. Sometimes both!
     
  7. Aea

    Aea Prince

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    I like to get a Library + University in there on time to have Oxford ready to catapult me into Modern. But otherwise looks good, and depending on how late that city is planted you might not even need to worry about the University.
     
  8. Redaxe

    Redaxe Emperor

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    Generally its better to build those cities earlier - but if you're tying to get the national college in earlier then i suppose it can wait.
    BNW added trade routes as a strong catch-up mechanism for cities too. So make use of this. Caravans are pretty weak compared to cargo ships but they are a bit better by the renaissance. So generally late game cities are easier to develop certainly if they are coastal with the BNW expansion (if you can send them cargo ships)...

    Generally you want to send food to a city. Say if my caravan sends +4 food to a new city, it can work 2 mines for +6/8 production..., this works out better then +4 production from a caravan...

    Keep an eye on happiness though, if you are constrained for happiness then don't grow the new city too fast, just works mines until you get more happiness buildings.

    I'm basically just repeating what you said, I myself tend not to rush science buildings because by the Renaissance you should have between 100-200 bpt, and prioritising a library in a city with 4 population to get an extra 2bpt isn't really a high priority - unless for some reason you still haven't built a NC or you're trying to get to Oxford early on, or your China...
     
  9. FrostK

    FrostK Prince

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    Colosseum is bad building, very bad. It is 2gpt per 2 happiness and requires hammers. Try hardly not to build it. If you do science I would advise to build library before marketplace/workshop.

    But of course "depends on the situation"
     
  10. Ribannah

    Ribannah Fighter Druid

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    Buy the workshop, that is the most efficient choice. It's still middle game, buying a Granary and an Aqueduct will only make you hit the happiness ceiling.
     
  11. Sclb

    Sclb Emperor

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    Correct, as a rule of thumb, never build any happiness buildings that cost gpt except when you need it to stay positive happiness. And if you need to, start building cheaper ones first. Science is bad in late game cities, so I disagree with building library before market/workshops. Workshops and later factories are amazing for new cities. Actually it is almost always a science drain if you found cities after turn 120 or so, unless you plan to win slow turn 300+ victory as it takes around 100 turns to get the city to be productive. It is a lot faster to just conquer cities if you want more cities, as they come prebuilt and you can sell useless buildings. Good captured cities become profitable once out of resistance and usually productive. On high difficulty, the captured cities are often more advanced than my own.
     
  12. Chum

    Chum King

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    Colosseum is 1gpt.

    Zoo is 2gpt.

    Colosseums have a purpose, Circus Maximus. Sometimes lux distribution and religion gets in your way of happiness and you have to grow somehow. It is always a last choice, and if I see I'm suffering that badly on happy, usually I'll just rush an ideology. Even just 2 happy from monuments squares things up in a hurry.

    Zoos are terrible, and they are a last ditch "No one will trade with me, but I've gotta burn down these cities somehow" effort. I can't remember the last time I built a stadium.
     
  13. Aea

    Aea Prince

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    Honestly perplexed by the coliseum comment. Unless I'm playing a civ that has a very strong happiness bonus I build coliseums and CM every single game. I try and push them off as much as possible and often prebuild, but they do get built. Even if I get wonders (I mostly play MP) I still feel the need for them, delaying to Renaissance at the latest.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  14. Plumfairy

    Plumfairy Prince

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    I've seen many people say this, but in my experience production trade routes are usually, but not always, better. Consider:

    *Unless you've researched chemistry, tiles that give 4 production are hard to come by in the Renaissance era. (I usually delay chemistry for quite a while.) Tiles that give 4 food (or more!) are super common. So a trade route giving production is giving your city a resource that's harder to come by (for most cities) than a food trade route.

    *For coastal cities, the above point tends to be even more true. They usually have one or more fish, and those give food galore. Production.... not so much.

    *Newly founded cities have an incredible backlog of stuff they need to build. This backlog becomes even longer if you start considering coastal cities, cities with lots of pastures, or a city that you want to start producing military units. (Assuming you want barracks & armory for those units) A production trade route directly helps with all that building. Food trade routes don't help directly. I've read that by growing the city faster, you end up increasing its production faster than with production trade routes. But I've found that I can generally focus the city entirely on 4 food tiles for that purpose.... and the prod trade route allows me to make progress on my building backlog at the same time.

    *Using food trade routes on small cities almost locks you into growth, which might be problematic if you're approaching your happiness limit.

    *Similarly, sometimes you fall into negative happiness, whether because of a conquered city, a luxury tile getting razed, or because you had to sell off luxuries for some much needed instant cash. Whatever the reason, negative happiness happens. And when it does, the production trade route is just as valuable as always, while the food trade route is almost useless. (It's only useful if it allows you to transfer all citizens to more production.)



    Having said all that, I *love* food trade routes for future Observatory cities. Often, cities founded next to a mountain don't have a lot of nearby food... it's all hills and/or ocean. Hopefully there are major food sources in the 2nd or 3rd ring, but when it starts, the city has nothing. In those situations... god bless food trade routes.
     
  15. darkskies

    darkskies Warlord

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    Just a comment on the coliseum: I often build them, but not as much as I used to--I've started devoting my religion to all the happiness stuff (happiness from shrines, temples etc. though I do take the one that lets you build GPs sooner)...that way you are trading a little gold for both religious points and happiness where as the coliseum only gets you some happiness for gold. Now if I'm doing really early war mongering the coliseum can still be very useful -- lets me puppet more early cities so sometimes I only build two cities than get coliseums (since I want better archers anyway I'll go this tech route fast even if I could get happiness from temples) and start puppeting for my other needs (maybe an occasional annex like if I need boats and didn't have a costal city): seldom then do you ever need to found a mid-game city doing this (if you need a resource take it from someone). Though actually it's very rare for me to found a mid-game city early wars or not: last time I did was when there was almost no iron on the map (a huge map) not one city state had any and I was playing Elizabeth so I had to found a terrible snowy island city to pick up some iron.

    In general if I'm in renaissance I should have founded all needed cities by then (or taken them if someone early attacks me): though as others say if it's necessary workshop is my #1 priority (hopefully purchased). The other time needing to found late happens is if I'm on an isolated small island surrounded by deep water (but usually I'll quit at that point I discover this since it's going to be a boring button pusher for some time). But as to the OP I don't see why I'd found a city like you describe in mid-game so the choices after the workshop are very dependent on why I founded the city.

    @plumfairy: if your "observatory" city has ocean than don't overlook lighthouse as those coastal tiles can give you a lot of food with a lighthouse not to mention some good production potential too.
     
  16. Redaxe

    Redaxe Emperor

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    Many people would argue that if you never need colosseums then your cities are too small and you're losing out on science, production, gold etc...
     
  17. Redaxe

    Redaxe Emperor

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    Thats a good point. For the food caravans to be better you need to have enough improved quarries, mines etc... to be able put all the new citizens to work. Often you may not have enough workers there for that so I suppose then a production cargo ship would be better.
     
  18. vanatteveldt

    vanatteveldt Emperor

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    I think the point is mostly not to take someone off that 6 food tile to put him on a hammer, but to use the extra food to grow another guy to put on the hammer tile, while still working the food tile. In other words, the food caravan is there to grow the city to mid-size ASAP so it can contribute to science and do useful stuff, not to help it have higher production as a small city.

    Whether that is worth it I guess depends mostly on your happiness (can you afford to grow the city quickly?) and whether your need buildings in there quickly (i.e. a university for OU, culture/faith buildings, military production, etc.)

    If you have plenty of gold and happiness, I guess the optimal would be indeed to send food caravans and buy critical buildings (granary, aquaduct, NW-needed buildings). But somehow I never have plenty of gold and happiness :)
     
  19. Redaxe

    Redaxe Emperor

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    Thats generally a sign that you are doing something right!
     
  20. Ribannah

    Ribannah Fighter Druid

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    Indeed. If you had lots of extra gold and happiness, you could have founded the new city sooner! :)
     

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