[BTS] News: BOTM 241 - Clash of the Titans Part 1 - Deity - Starts August 23rd 2022

Noble Zarkon

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BOTM 241: Clash of the Titans Part 1




Forum member @drewisfat recently stated "I'm familiar with std/normal/deity non-cheese victories, as that's what I always play. Rome is strong there. I think a perfect Rome game outperforms a perfect Inca game." So I thought we should test this hypothesis :) We discussed it on Staff and decided the best way to do it would be to play the same map twice, once as Inca and once as Rome. My feeling is nothing can compete with the Inca not even the mighty hordes of Rome so we will play as the Inca first then Rome next month - this means Rome will be played with map knowledge, if that turns out to be too easy then we will do this again in 6 months and swap the order! In order to avoid cheesy victories only Conquest and Domination victories are enabled.

I've tried to remove luck as far as possible - there's a strong hint as to what direction to head in from the position of the Quecha and all the AIs are very similar so it shouldn't matter too much which order you find them.


  • Civilization: Inca - Unique Unit: Quechua (replaces Warrior), Unique Building: Terrace (replaces Granary)
  • Leader: Sapa Inca
  • Difficulty: Deity
  • Map size: Standard
  • Map Script: Custom
  • Starting Era: Ancient
  • Speed: Normal
  • Options: No goody huts, no random events
  • Rivals: 6
  • Victory conditions: Conquest, Domination
  • World wrap: None
Huayna Capac is Industrious and Financial, and you start with Mysticism and Agriculture and Hunting.
The Industrious trait gives +50% wonder production and double production speed of Forge
The Financial trait gives +1 commerce on any plot that already has at least 2 commerce

Unique unit: Quechua (replaces Warrior)
The Quechua benefits from: free promotions: combat1, and 100% combat bonus against archer units. This compares with the Warrior which has: no directly comparable benefits.

Unique Building: Terrace (replaces Granary)
Terrace cost 60:hammers:, Tech req. Pottery; Unique building for the Incans; Replaces Granary
+2 :culture: culture
Stores 50% of food after growth
+1 health from Corn, Rice, Wheat

Starting screenshot

This is the start of the game (click for a bigger image):



Adventurer Class Bonuses:
Deity is hard, trust me I know!, so to make it a bit easier your first city has been founded, it's borders have popped and you have a worker ready to improve the corn. Oh and you have 8 Quecha's ready to go :) I gave you 500g as well so you don't run into financial trouble early on.

Challenger Class Equalizers:
No Challenger class needed this time!

To Enter the Competition:

This competition will open at 00:01 am on 23rd Aug 2022, server local time (UTC-6:00). From that date and time, you'll be able to get your chosen starting save >>>here<<<.

Submit the save after your victory (or defeat) here, by 27th Sep 2022.

Here is a link to a list of the differences between Vanilla, Warlords and BtS.

Software Versions

Windows: This game MUST be played in Beyond the Sword (NOT Civ4 Vanilla or Warlords), patched to version 3.19, and with the BUFFY mod version 3.19.005 installed. You can download the BUFFY mod here. Players using Windows Vista or Windows 7 are encouraged to read the notes on Vista fixes here.


Macintosh: This game MUST be played in Beyond the Sword (NOT Civ4 Vanilla or Warlords), patched to version 3.19, and with the Mac BUFFY mod version 3.19.003 installed. You can download the Mac BUFFY mod here.

While playing...

Remember - for your entry to be accepted, it MUST be your first attempt to play this game, and you MUST NOT replay any turns. If you make a mistake while playing, you have to live with it, learn from it, and carry on the game without replaying.

We will open 'spoiler' threads during the month for players to discuss what happens in their games. Do not discuss any details of your game outside those threads.
 
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ZPV

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Oooooooooooh! Cool concept!

Time to go work out some AI timings and my appetite for risk.

Map speculation:
If it's pangaea-like, then I'd be starting with Qs and worker stealing/blind rushing.
If it's a wheel/islands and those are land bridges, then the AIs are too far away for that and it's probably worker first. But maybe they are close enough after all?
 

Kaitzilla

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The map has tentacles.

And the best civ :)

**Edit**
I'll put some more thoughts on Q's.

First, they are cheap as dirt, but the expense is no joke outside of borders.
-1.5:gold: per turn each.
A huge stack of them is a real budget killer.

Second, they are fantastic worker stealers and chokers.
Pay close attention to suspicious tiles with higher than normal yield (horse, bronze, iron) and new settlers sneaking out to get them.
Deity workers can build a road in 1 turn.

Third is they get exponentially weaker with every defense bonus the enemy archer gets.
Flat city with 0% defense? Cool
Flat city with a 50% wall? Ugh
City on a hill? Pass usually.
Even the enemy capitol with the Turn 50 border pop is on my mind during a Q rush.

Finally, I've lost more 99% battles with quechuas than any other unit.
They are very feast and famine.
Crushing highs and crushing lows.

Inca dominate Hall of Fame because every map is non-creative civs with capitals that are not on hills.

Granary with +2:culture: per turn that can be gained with city capture, now that is truly broken. :love:
 
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Only Con/Dom victories allowed. I prefer bareback so I doubt I'll play. At least I won't win.
 
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Not going to try contender on this one - still recovering from the Deity Tokugawa game :crazyeye: The adventurer class bonuses seem very generous - but I have feeling they will be needed :lol:
 
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BTW, Settler in the initial screenshot is near the silver, right? and this is where adventurers would have their city?
 
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The settler can walk too. Notice there's a "strong hint".
“there's a strong hint as to what direction to head in from the position of the Quecha and all the AIs are very similar so it shouldn't matter too much which order you find them”

What can be deduced from this?

1. One nearby AI won’t culturally block us from reaching the others.
2. Our Q might stumble upon one soon but more likely there are two or three or more equally distanced from our Q so that puts then even further away.
3. All or none of the nearby targets have a strategic resource in their capitals’ fat cross and second city.
4. All or none have a capital on a hill.
5. All or none are likely to settle their second city on a hill.
6. Their cities are likely to be at least 12 or 14 tiles away from a silver-settled capital in terms of maintenance costs.
7. Land to our east looks promising. Land to the southwest is garbage (gar-BAHZH’) except for that fish.

If T0 Q-1sw reveals adequate food then 4t to that plains hill is an option.
 

Kaitzilla

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I'm not sure how victory conditions would affect AIs' behavior. Do they have a higher tendency to build units rather than wonders given that only military victory is possible?
When Culture Victory is turned off, the AI no longer pursue the strategies 'Culture3' or 'Culture4'
That means they will never turn the :culture: slider up to 80% or 90% and stop teching to try and win a Culture Victory. (Looking at you Mansa)

Here is a list of a few AI strategies:
https://forums.civfanatics.com/threads/ai-strategy-descriptions.205411/
For the curious, these are what may show up under cheat mode when you alt-mouseover an AI's territory.

Dagger:
The Dagger strategy involves building a lot more "City Attack" units, along with some "Counter" units, it does this at the expense of infrastructure and settling (but will do some settling and also get infrastructure which helps unit pumpage). Dagger also involves pursuing strong units via research.
AI's decide whether or not to dagger based on their personality and the availability of suitable UU's and combat units, an AI can decide to dagger from the start of the game (in which case it tends to chase ie Bronze Working), or it can find itself in a good position and decide to dagger from that point (ie Augustus might start off not daggering, but then get Iron and thus Praets and decide he wants to after all).
Also if an AI is attacked it may decide to Dagger as a means to counter-attack - this is mainly dependent on having real units.
Dagger wont activate if there's nothing to kill.
The name Dagger is basically a misnomer now.

Get Better Units:
The GBU strategy is active until the AI gets two units better than warrior/archer/longbow. Chariot+Horse Archer would do the trick, Axeman + Spearman would too, Elephant + Catapult. In the worst case it'd take Catapults+Trebs, or Catapults+Muskets to get out of GBU, what GBU does is reduce investment in units and prevents the dagger strategy from fully kicking in. GBU suppresses AI military buildups and war declarations, it figures that a military investment will damn it either way and it's best off just praying to get better units without being attacked. However being at war will largely override GBU and it'll just spam out whatever crap it has available.
Note: In the next version the special nature of UU's like Jaguar and Hwacha will be recognized, with those units counting as 2 "better units".

Crush:
The Crush strategy involves recruiting nearly every unit and sending them all in with the intention of causing some serious harm, it's used more often on Aggressive AI setting and AI's which are daggering are more likely to crush (GBU naturally suppresses Crush). The Crush strategy is triggered at the start of war planning and expires soon after, allowing the AI to then replenish garrisons as a guard against backstabs (As a newer strategy it needs some refinement).
Did an attack just really, really, really hurt? It was a crush.

Peace:
The Peace strategy currently does nothing. It involves a "personality profile" of the neighbors to decide whether or not the AI is safe from attack. While the Peace strategy shows as active, the AI thinks it's reasonably safe from being attacked by those it is at peace with - this is not to be confused with the AI's own feelings on attacking - Monty could show as Peace, despite planning to backstab his neighbor Gandhi... he just thinks Gandhi wont attack him. Once activated it will reduce unit spending levels, unless the AI is daggering.
Again, peace isn't working at the moment - it does nothing even if it shows up under chipotle.

Missionary:
The Missionary strategy is not active from the start of the game - instead it can only be activated by having a holy city and the religions of the neighbors also plays a role in deciding whether or not to missionary. Missionary overrides Dagger and causes the AI to try and secure it's position through diplomacy - using the logic that if it converts it's neighbors it'll be safe(r) from attack and on the right side of dogpiles.
Theocracy as a favorite civic also plays a role here, increasing the chance of Missionary.
Missionary AI's can be fairly scary since they usually have a huge shrine income and a bunch of buddies - but bad allies can also drag them down.

Production:
Involves a slightly increased weight on hammers and slightly decreased on commerce, is based on personality.

Culture 1:
The AI decides to pursue a cultural victory from the very start of the game (but only if the victory is enabled!). Stage 1 involves pursuing religions and wonders. Personality and traits play a large role, Theocracy as a favorite civic reduces the chance. Being a vassal increases the chance (can win in spite of the master) but only if it's sort of possible (it needs to have enough religions and enough cities).

Culture 2:
Once a bit further into the game the Cultural AI moves onto stage 2, this involves heavy investment in missionaries, religion spreading, temple building and so on and so on. Anything which gives culture is valued more.
Culture 2 deactivates Dagger.
Note that AI's in Culture 2 can tech very fast.

Culture 3:
Culture 3 involves putting A LOT more weight on culture and pursuing only techs which are immediately useful (Nationalism, Military Tradition, UU tech etc), it is activated once the AI feels confident that it can win a CV.

Culture 4:
Once the AI has no more useful techs on the radar it turns off research and cranks up the culture. This can be deactivated by a war declaration, if the AI is close to a not-so-useful-but-not-useless military tech (the AI might for example decide to pursue Artillery only during a war).
**Edit**
Woops, this list might be a few of the AI-code strategies for an early version of the mod BetterAI.
I know 3.19 BTS has Culture1, Culture2,Culture3, and Culture4 because I've seen them when pressing Alt in cheat mode after turning on the debugger.
I'll try to find a complete list of AI strategies for unmodded BTS 3.19.

-----------

I would say that when victory conditions are turned off, they affect the AI behavior very little.
When "Always Peace" is turned on, the AI still build huge armies even though they can't use them.
I don't think the AI builds units more often if only military victory is possible.
 
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Kaitzilla

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Here is a list of a few AI strategies:
https://forums.civfanatics.com/threads/ai-strategy-descriptions.205411/
**Edit**
Woops, this might be a few of the AI-code strategies for an early version of the mod BetterAI.
I know 3.19 BTS has Culture1, Culture2,Culture3, and Culture4.
I'll try to find a complete list of AI strategies for unmodded BTS 3.19.
This is actually harder to find than I thought. :sad:

The code that mentions AI Strategies is found in Firaxis Games -> Sid Meier's Civilization 4 -> Beyond the Sword -> CvGameCoreDLL folder
Specifically, the files:
1) CvCityAI.cpp
2) AI_Defines.h
3) CvPlayerAI.cpp

and to a lesser extent:
4) CvGameTextMgr.cpp
5) CvTeamAI.cpp
6) CvUnitAI.cpp

DanF mentioned all 20 strategies the AI can use.
  1. AI_STRATEGY_DAGGER
  2. AI_STRATEGY_SLEDGEHAMMER
  3. AI_STRATEGY_CASTLE
  4. AI_STRATEGY_FASTMOVERS
  5. AI_STRATEGY_SLOWMOVERS
  6. AI_STRATEGY_CULTURE1
  7. AI_STRATEGY_CULTURE2
  8. AI_STRATEGY_CULTURE3
  9. AI_STRATEGY_CULTURE4
  10. AI_STRATEGY_MISSIONARY
  11. AI_STRATEGY_CRUSH
  12. AI_STRATEGY_PRODUCTION
  13. AI_STRATEGY_PEACE
  14. AI_STRATEGY_GET_BETTER_UNITS
  15. AI_STRATEGY_LAND_BLITZ
  16. AI_STRATEGY_AIR_BLITZ
  17. AI_STRATEGY_LAST_STAND
  18. AI_STRATEGY_FINAL_WAR
  19. AI_STRATEGY_OWABWNW
  20. AI_STRATEGY_BIG_ESPIONAGE
I'm not sure what AI Strategy #19 does.
Nothing good!
Spoiler :
if (!bAlwaysPeace && !(bLandWar || bAssault) && (kPlayer.AI_isDoStrategy(AI_STRATEGY_OWABWNW) || (GC.getGame().getSorenRandNum(12, "AI consider Nuke") == 0)))
{
int iTotalNukes = kPlayer.AI_totalUnitAIs(UNITAI_ICBM);
int iNukesWanted = 1 + 2 * std::min(kPlayer.getNumCities(), GC.getGame().getNumCities() - kPlayer.getNumCities());
if ((iTotalNukes < iNukesWanted) && (GC.getGame().getSorenRandNum(100, "AI train nuke MWAHAHAH") < (90 - (80 * iTotalNukes) / iNukesWanted)))
{
if ((pWaterArea != NULL) && (GC.getGame().getSorenRandNum(4, "AI train nuke carrier")))
{
if (AI_chooseUnit(UNITAI_MISSILE_CARRIER_SEA))
{
return;
}
}
if (AI_chooseUnit(UNITAI_ICBM))
{
return;
}
}
}
Always Peace game setting seems to turn it off?
Spoiler :
//Turn off inappropriate strategies.
if (GC.getGameINLINE().isOption(GAMEOPTION_ALWAYS_PEACE))
{
m_iStrategyHash &= ~AI_STRATEGY_DAGGER;
m_iStrategyHash &= ~AI_STRATEGY_CRUSH;
m_iStrategyHash &= ~AI_STRATEGY_OWABWNW;
m_iStrategyHash &= ~AI_STRATEGY_FASTMOVERS;
m_iStrategyHash &= ~AI_STRATEGY_FINAL_WAR;
}

return m_iStrategyHash;
}
 
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