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New to Noble - Not New to Civ

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Strategy & Tips' started by MrBelvedere, Nov 27, 2009.

  1. MrBelvedere

    MrBelvedere Chieftain

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    I've played Civ 1, 2, 3 and now 4. I'm currently playing Civ 4 BTS.

    Throughout my life, I've never really tried to take my Civ game to the next level. I've just played casually and had fun, but my scores were never really that good. I also went through periods where I would not play for a year or so.

    I'm out of grad school now and have more time on my hands. Before starting my last game on Civ 4 BTS, I spent an afternoon reading posts here, created a strategy guide for myself, and then played a game on Warlord. My normalized score was 12,000+ and a Hammurabi level. These results were much, much better than usual for me. For now, I have three questions I would like to ask:

    1. How many Great Generals should (or can) you put into your dedicated Gun Pump or Military City? In other words, how many before it’s overkill? Or in other words, how many should I put in my first Gun Pump before I should start setting up a secondary Gun Pump? I thought each Great General added as a military instructor is supposed to increase the Level of new units by 1, am I mistaken? This does not seem to happen to me.

    2. On my last game, I fought nearly the entire game on Warlord and conquered two continents. I used my Level 5 Units at times to engage in war, but I struggled to obtain a Level 6 military unit. Any advice on getting an L6 unit so I can build West Point?

    3. What is gained by winning the race to Liberalism? If nothing is gained, why does Civ make that sad horn sound if I lose the race to Liberalism?

    4. Do any of you have advice on what goals or milestones you hope to achieve by 1 AD?
     
  2. Continental Op

    Continental Op Warlord

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    You gain a free tech by winning lib race, same as oracle.
     
  3. deathturnip

    deathturnip Deliciously carcenagenic!

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    1. Generally, you want to target a promotion level. The barracks provides 3, and 1 general provides 2 giving you exactly 2 extra promotions. During arms buildup people often run theocracy and vassalage, giving 4 more exp (2 each) if I am not mistaken. In this case 2 generals are very worth it to get level 4. This is of course invalid for charismatic leaders who can either aim higher or use less generals/civics. Adding west point and a third general (yes, this takes 4 generals total. You only get this option if you are extremely violent) can let you crank out level 5 units out of the gate!

    2. West point only takes a level 5 unit. You also need military tradition, however.
    Edit: I stand corrected. Level 6 it is.

    3. Being the first to liberalism permits you to instantly research ANY available tech. People often rely on this as a cheap alternative to some of the more expensive techs around that time of the game.

    4. Can't help you too much with this one since I rarely pay attention to the year, and usually focus on the turn number. Not sure what turn 1 A.D. is, but I would guesse that around that time I am usually done expanding and either gearing up for, or recovering after a war.
     
  4. Ignorant Teacher

    Ignorant Teacher Emperor

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    It depends a lot on the map, but you should try to get between 6 and 10 cities, have already spawned a great scientist (preferably two) and be making between 150 and 200 :science: per turn in 1AD. (That's what I aim for).

    Edit: Westpoint does require a level 6 unit.

    Edit 2: Check the 5 tips.
     
  5. deathturnip

    deathturnip Deliciously carcenagenic!

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    Really? Taken from the info center
    West Point Military Tradition; Unit of level 5 experience 800 hammers +1 Great People points; New units receive +4 experience points; More likely to generate Great Engineer; Doubled production speed with Stone

    Unit of level 5 experience

    Not saying you are wrong. The info center could very well be wrong. Lemme boot up civ really quick.

    The info center is VERY wrong. Level 6 and 1200 hammers. Sorry about the confusion.
     
  6. Ignorant Teacher

    Ignorant Teacher Emperor

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    Spoiler :
     
  7. deathturnip

    deathturnip Deliciously carcenagenic!

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    nonono. not the Cevopedia. Civfanatics infocenter is wrong. Wow. That is so... backwards.
     
  8. VoiceOfUnreason

    VoiceOfUnreason Deity

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    No, it's an XP bonus, like barracks. I usually find that level 4 (10 xp) is enough; adding three more generals to get one more promotion seems silly. That said, if you are popping enough generals that this is really a question, it probably doesn't matter much.

    If you attach a great general to a single unit, that's a splash of 20 XP, which gets you most of the way there - use a veteran unit as your target and you should clear the bar easily.

    Ranked #1 in GNP and Land Area and Soldiers (see the demographics screen).
     
  9. lymond

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

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    Yeah, I read a strategy article regarding Great Generals that recommended attaching one to a unit first. The recommended unit is a chariot, but you can even attach it to a warrior that has some promos from barbs and stuff. Chariots are nice because they are generally not stack defenders and they can move twice to get back to the stack for protection- you want to protect this unit with your life. Depending on if you have the aggressive trait, you want to promote Combat I > Medic 3 and possibly Leadership for faster experience. This unit can support your Stack of Doom and only use to attack in mop up situations for guaranteed kills. The medic 3 will heal your stack very fast and keep them on a swift warpath. Later you can promote this unit up the line to Knight, etc. I focus on further Combat promos last, preferring things like Flank, Tactics, and Morale - again so this unit is not focused as a stack defender. With a warrior, the Woodsman 3 plus later Medic promos make it a superior support unit.

    I do settle some GGs in my unit pumps, but only so many are needed. A barrack plus a GG gets you 4 XP and 1 promos, unless you are Charasmatic. I recommend settling no more than 3 GGs in each military pumps and later a military academy for faster unit production - probably only in the non-Heroic Epic city unless you are just getting GGs out the keester. First GG should be your super unit though. (Note a GG provides 2XPs, Barracks 2XP, Stable 3XPs and 2 each from Vassalage and Theocracy.
     
  10. JammerUno

    JammerUno King

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    Such high bpts are almost impossible to get, let alone maintain, at lower difficulties. The AI won't tech fast enough to be useful, and they won't have enough gold to trade to fund defecit research.
     
  11. BigTime

    BigTime Prince

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    A really good way to get help on your gameplay strategy is to do an online game where you play different rounds and get tips from other members of the forums (especially the ones who play on much higher levels). Your game will improve a lot by doing these.
     
  12. MrBelvedere

    MrBelvedere Chieftain

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    Thanks. That's a good idea for a couple of reasons. One, I rarely attached a GG to a unit. Two, I hadn't thought of attaching a GG to a Chariot for the reasons you gave. The two movement aspect and the mop up aspect are good things to keep in mind.

    In fact, the Chariot has never been a part of my game much. In the past, I didn't go to war much until Cavalry was available, and then I would launch a large campaign. I'll try going to war sooner so I can create a GG out of a Chariot. If you attach a GG to a Chariot, what unit can that become later in the game (for example, I mean that Cavalry becomes a Gun Ship)?
     
  13. MrBelvedere

    MrBelvedere Chieftain

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    Thanks. Makes sense. One follow up question though. I can see that teching to Liberalism has value. Is there any rule of thumb, or conventional wisdom, as to how valuable it is to chase Liberalism?

    If we had to pin down this goal in the words of a standardized test, is it: not that important, somewhat important, important, very important?
     
  14. yanner39

    yanner39 Emperor

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    Now see I don't get that. I am currently playing a game as Hannibal. At 1AD, I was definatly NOT between 150 and 200 beekers. I was working 3 gold mines, I had a nice commerce city with a river flowing thru it and I have the great library. The thing is, as always, my reseach rate is at 60% (I have 6 cities). I usually have 80 to 100 beekers at 1AD.

    What could I possibly be doing wrong. I play noble usually. I could settle more cities I guess but more cities mean more maintenance costs. Always, I always have trouble with Barbs so I focus more on military as much as science in the beginning. Like in my current game, not all my cities have libraries. I usually build libraries in all my cities, even the production cities, but they come a little later than 1AD.

    Maybe I'm not running enough scientist? But running scientist means taking a pop away from a high commerce tiles which generates more commerce and more beekers.

    Anyways, any advice would great. Beekers b/w 150 and 200 much really put you ahead.
     
  15. lymond

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

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    Answering your last couple of questions:

    1) Chariots can be valuable early fighters and some civs have good chariot UUs. Regardless I try to have a balanced stack. There's a good strat article on building stacks in the war academy. The chariot can last a while on it's own as the General unit - into the Medieval area - again keeping in mind that this unit only attacks in mop up - like 99%. Later this chariot can be upgraded to Knight and so on. GG units are upgraded for free. Don't upgrade it to Knight until you have stronger Knight units as your GG unit might unwittingly become the stack defender - you never want that. You really only need one of these units and can join the rest of your GGs to cities or build a military academy. However, you might want to keep one in reserve in case your super unit somehow gets killed, although you should always keep it in your Stack of Doom so it is protected.

    2) Interestingly, some time ago when I was less experience I posed a similar question about Liberalism. The key is to play it to your strategy. Common techs to grab are Nationalism, Astronomy and maybe Gunpowder. Again, it really should play to your strategy and possibly the map too. I often take Astronomy to get naval warfare and trade up, but this is not always the case if the map is not watery. Keep in mind that there are important techs on the path to Liberalism like Paper, Philosophy and most of all Education to get Universities online. Most folks want to get University and Oxford up as soon as possible. It also depends on what you've teched previously. For instance, you may want Astro but don't have the prereqs when you reach Liberalism, so you can't select it. Keep tabs on how for ahead the AI you are in research to see if you have time to research the prereqs for the free tech you want.

    In generaly, Liberalism is always something I shoot for and generally attain. I think it's highly valuable though not be-all/end-all if you don't get it. Sometimes the free tech I choose determines the victory condition I go for.
     
  16. lymond

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

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    150 to 200 beakers is attainable by 1AD but it depends a lot on several factors like the map, leader, etc.. I tend to always build libraries as soon as possible in all cities, often as a replacement for monuments. I run scientists whenever possible, especially in my designated GP farm. Try to get at least 2 commerce cities up and running, especially if you are Financial like Hannibal. An important approach is to get Currency as soon as you can and build wealth in high hammer cities - this will allow you to keep the slider at 100%. Read some strat articles on how to set up your cities and what to build and not to build.

    Again, though it's nice to have this target it's not always reachable or vital to have that many beakers - but it sure helps.
     
  17. learner gamer

    learner gamer King

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    Those are great questions and, funnily enough, actually related. The reason I say this is because one of the easiest ways to open up West Point is actually to attach a great general to a unit such as a chariot or horse archer (although any unit will do), provided that unit has 6XP (assuming the leader’s not charismatic) – all as lymond notes. Aside from the extra mobility a horse based unit offers, the other reason for selecting this type of unit BTW is that it can gain 5XP from the get go if produced in a city with a barracks and a stable. To gain the 1 other needed XP, it can simply fight a battle or be produced under theocracy or vassalage.

    In any case, once you have a 6XP unit, all you need to do is attach your great general to the unit to grant it a further 20XP for a total of 26XP. Once the unit is promoted, it becomes level 6 (for which it needs all 26XP, unless you're charismatic in which case only 20XP are needed IIRC) and West Point is available. Indeed, it is for the ability to open up the Heroic Epic (at 10XP, 8XP if charismatic) and West Point that I usually attach my first great general to a unit (rather than settle them) and promote them up the medic line to kill two birds with one stone: the military wonders are open and my troops heal much faster in battle thanks to the medic unit.

    I’m afraid this is not as easy to quantify as you’d like under the standard test IMHO. After all, I’ve seen and played in games which have, on the one hand, turned immeasurably (favourably) once liberalism has been nabbed. That’s not because liberalism is itself a great tech to have but maybe because I or the gamer I’ve been following have used it to obtain a free tech that no-one else has. They or I have then traded around liberalism and /or the free tech to massively improve the tech situation against the AI, and gone onto win the game. Alternatively, the free tech chosen may have been one such as steel which has granted access to cannons, which, when built (or obtained via upgrade) en masse, have granted a decisive military advantage then used to wage war. By contrast, I’ve also seen (on emperor and above) and played in (up to monarch) games where liberalism has been missed and yet the game has still been won. I think the best that can be said is that the free tech liberalism gives you can be very handy for various reasons, just some of which I pointed out. (Others include the ability to build a wonder such as The Taj from nationalism, to open up trade routes from astronomy, or to grab cannons from steel if you want to :ar15: the neighbours.) As a result, many civvers will try and reach liberalism first if they can. However, obtaining liberalism before anyone else is neither a necessary nor sufficient condition to win a game.
     
  18. pappyball

    pappyball Chieftain

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    nice posts everyone! you guys are all very helpful here. i had a few questions as well, as i have recently decided to step up my game.

    1) is it reasonable to expect to win every game on Noble+ via a conquest victory? i have always played with this being the only victory condition, but now that i have been playing on higher levels, is conquest always possible?

    2) i have seen a lot of walkthroughs and it seems like archery isn't very important to research early (at least on noble difficulty and below). of course if you don't have access to iron, copper or horses-- things change quickly and you need archery. but in general, if you have early access to copper, do you think archery can be skipped and traded for later?

    3) what are the best opening builds? (in general--of course it changes based on your resources, forests, leader, etc) i have been using worker-warrior(explore)-worker-settler(chop)-warrior(defend) as a rule of thumb, although it gets altered slightly based on game conditions.

    4) which is more valuable to build if you had to pick 1: stonehenge, 'mids or the oracle?
     
  19. VoiceOfUnreason

    VoiceOfUnreason Deity

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    Probably - the AI is really bad at war.

    Or without it, if you know what you are doing. A big part of the problem is that Archers are lousy attacking pieces ('cept against the occasional warrior or animal) which makes them lousy patrolling pieces. In the field, it's hard to find good defensive positions (you perch on the hill, and the AI goes around), which means you're mostly defending in cities. Yes, they are a fine piece to have if your cities are threatened. On the other hand, if you've got barbarians at the gates, your game has other problems.

    It's much more common these days to see the top players throwing out carefully placed fog busters (to prevent barbarians from spawning), and then using diplomacy to keep out of trouble until the big hitters arrive.

    In no particular order

    * Worker first for land improvements
    ** Second worker with many tiles to improve, or forests to chop.
    ** Fog busters until "it's time" to build the Settler.

    * Fast scout to visit the Fairy Hut Mother

    * Fast warrior to steal a worker or to set up a warrior rush

    * Slow warrior (grow to size two, micro managing all of the surplus food to production). You trade some time for flexibility - it gives you time to steal a worker before you train your own, without compromising your development. If you are going for an early Bronze Working, and have the right tiles available, this is actually a bit more efficient than training the worker directly.

    Mids, of course - if we ignore the opportunity cost. Personally, I prefer to skip the religious tree (Shwedagon Paya instead), which makes the Oracle less interesting to me. But Prophets don't suck, and capturing the Pyramids is a reasonable alternative to building them yourself.
     
  20. MrBelvedere

    MrBelvedere Chieftain

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    Thanks to Lymond and everyone else for the thorough replies. As I stated in the original post, the key to my improvement was to specify my cities. I was wondering if anyone would be interested in reviewing and commenting on how I specified them to see if there is room for improvement. Although my score increased considerably, I do not consider myself to be an expert by any means. I probably still have more questions than answers on specifying my cities.

    By the way, I play with Roosevelt (American) and, again, I'm playing BTS.

    RECIPE FOR SPECIFYING CITIES

    GREAT PERSON FARM
    -Goal: To create Great Engineers and minimize Great Artist pollution
    -Map: Tons of food
    -Buildings: ?
    -National Wonders: National Epic, Ironworks
    -World Wonders: ?
    -Great People to Settle: ?

    GUN PUMP
    -Goal: To spawn units at Level 5
    -Map: Ocean access
    -Buildings: Barracks, Stable (w/horse), Forge, Factory
    -National Wonders: Heroic Epic, West Point
    -World Wonders: Great Wall, Pentagon
    -Great People to Settle: Add 3 Military Instructors to spawn Level 5 units (?)

    COMMERCE CITY
    -Make $
    -Map: Gold/Silver potential (?)
    -Buildings: Bank, Mall (if U.S.),
    -National Wonders: Wall Street,
    -World Wonders: Holy City
    -Great People to Settle: Great Merchants (w/Wall Street), Great Prophets (w/Holy City)
    -Corporations: Add them here

    RESEARCH CITY:
    -Map: (?)
    -Buildings: Library, Academies (via settling GS)
    -National Wonders: Oxford,
    -World Wonders:
    -Great People to Settle: Great Scientist,

    Looking forward to your insight. Thanks in advance.
     

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