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Noble => Prince

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Strategy & Tips' started by StefanCelMare, Dec 12, 2015.

  1. Jivilov

    Jivilov Warlord

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    1.Are you suggesting that IW is not so important for an early military? IW is necessary for iron-based melee units; how can these be ignored unless you've got horses? Sometimes the AI won't trade military-related techs so you've gotta do it yourself anyway (or maybe I'm not diplomatically savvy enough, as per religion and civics).

    2. You didn't mention Alphabet, which other high-level players mention as a tech to bypass and trade for later. Do you agree?

    3.Likewise, while unhappiness can be whipped away how can you avoid Monarchy if your little empire has no luxuries and your capital is stuck at 4 happy cap? (Or maybe I'm too pusillanimous to whip an army to grab some from the neighbors :(.)

    4. But yeah, once I've got the necessary techs I try to jump ahead of the AI by researching a different line. Aside from the obvious beeline to Liberalism are there any other tech paths that the AI typically puts off 'til later?

    Thanks for your kind attention and great advice. Cheers!:goodjob:
     
  2. Htadus

    Htadus A and L's dad

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    He did not say these techs are not important. All he is saying is that those techs are typical AI priorities and they are happy to trade it. As long as it is not Shaka or Ragnar. Or Toku.

    As for Alpha, if you have a few techs that can keep your empire growing, then on monarch and lower level this may be a good tech to learn.
     
  3. Virupaksha

    Virupaksha Chieftain

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    On Prince level the AI will be very slow to tech Alpha so it is very easy to get it first. Beelining Alpha after getting the basic worker techs is strong play. After you can trade for the remaining ancient era techs. Being the only civ with Alpha is a big advantage - the AI can only trade with you.

    Agree with Lymond's list of AI priority techs but on Prince I think normally you have to self-tech Maths as it opens up so much. The alternative is trading Alpha for it and losing the monopoly or trading it for something like MC at a significant loss. IW is normally easy to trade for Maths.
     
  4. lymond

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

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    Htadus is exactly right. On lower levels, Alpha is often a good beeline since you can trade for many of the little tech you generally would bypass. heck..you may even still get Oracle fairly easy trading for those techs after Alpha.

    Alpha for Monarchy is a pretty good trade as well, although you may need to put a turn into Monarchy first or a small tech or two into the deal. Speaking of which it is not uncommon to part tech something in expectation of trade..you are still saving turns.

    And keep in mind Currency, which can and should often be on your beeline path after Alpha. Once you add gold to the equation things become even easier in trading. For one, gold helps you to evaluate trade deals and whether an AI is in the process of teching something you already have. On turn x, evaluate a trade deal comparing tech you have and techs you want. I forget the dialogue option, but click the one that makes them evaluate the trade and make an offer. Noet what they ask for and how much gold they throw in or ask you for. On turn y, evaluate the same trade and see if it changes - do they ask for more or give you less? Evaluating trades also helps you know how to hold off on making trades as well, especially on lower levels as you may keep your monopolies much longer and keep techs like Alpha away from the AI. On..say..Prince or NOble, there is no reason to rush a trade for IW if you really don't need it at the moment. You still may have plenty of little things to trade for with little things they don't have. Just keep evaluating those trades and if you see the AI is starting to tech something then consider pulling the trigger. Ofc, if you really just need X tech to make a strategy happen asap then go for it.

    This approach is always valuable, and generally I'm looking to make gains in gold as well as tech. And certainly I will trade old small techs for bits of gold. You will start to get a feel for the value of these techs in gold, but it decreases over time and how many known AIs have that tech. I will sometimes just trade a small tech or whatever for x amount of gold even if it's not really what it is probably worth, simply as that AI will likely trade for it soon anyway. Get what you can when you can, in other words.

    It is further important to note that what I'm talking about becomes even more important as you move up levels. The need to not only trade techs but to be prompt and discerning in analyzing and procuring these trades is key to advancing those levels and keeping pace in tech.

    And gold is always important if you can grab chunks of it to keep your slider up to 100%. Also, keep track of when a wonder is built, or even if you finish one, and have currency. Incomplete wonders can produce a lot of "fail gold", so check the AIs stash of gold after a wonder is complete and you may find some have quite a lot to trade for. Do what you can to get that gold without, ofc, trading away techs you really don't want to at that time. (Note: speaking of fail gold, a common ploy among advanced players is to deliberately not complete wonders, but put bits of gold and OF hammers into them if they have bonuses on that wonder from resources or the Industrious trait. It is actually what makes Industrious such a powerful trait)

    So yeah, in most cases, AIs will trade Iron Working to you once you have Alpha, and as you move up levels it's almost assured some AIs will have IW by that point or soon after. Iron and iron based units are not usually a concern for me though early on, as I don't use them much. However, certain powerful UUs like Praets and Gallic Warriors require the Tech and/or resources, so sometimes you may beeline IW yourself if you want to make the most of those units early. And, ofc, sometimes you simply don't have copper or horses nearby so you want iron for some advanced units. But ask yourself if you can get by without it until you trade for it - sometimes maybe you can't, but oftentimes you can. Same goes if you are dealing with lots of jungle - do you have enough good land to work with in the meantime?

    As for Alpha, higher level players mention that can might be bypassed, because they are playing higher levels. The important thing is to setup trades. When you start hitting Immortal level, and maybe even Emperor, AIs will often get Alpha fairly quickly. In that case, it is often suggested to go for Aesthetics, which is a tech the AIs often ignore for a long time. Aesthetics makes for a good bargaining chip to pick up Alpha among other things, plus it is on the way to Lit>Music for the free Great Artist (golden age) and possibly The Great Library. However, generally on Monarch and below, Alpha beeline can be good move. (note: iso and semi-iso situations can call for completely different methods)

    Bottom line, it is important to choose optimal tech paths based on your situation, and that should happen early in the game. As mentioned more the once, the early game is so important. As you move up levels, things become less and less forgiving in that regard.

    Yep, you are correct..and I did note that caveat in my comments above. Even on higher levels than Prince I sometimes self tech maths depending on the situation, or if Philosophical I don't have any problem using that first GS to bulb it if it suites my strategy for that game, such as getting those boosted chops to get out a bunch of HAs....or even an attempt at a CS sling.

    ha..there's a very suitable bit of slang that can be read from that. I recommend you check out some Youtube Let's Plays from Absolute Zero if you really want to see slavery at work..and he's doing that on Deity. But yeah, sometimes you are going to use whipping fairly liberally to get that war going. Newer players tend to be rather timid doing so...

    ...I think the key thing you will gather from AZ is that you while your cap might take some whips, you generally let it take on the bulk of research effort (growth, scientists, cottages), while most other cities get fairly abused. That is the balance you create to keep things flowing - economy, expansion and conquest.
     
  5. Jivilov

    Jivilov Warlord

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    Well I'll be doggoned, I've been looking at AZ's Isabela game lately. Just finished Part 4, at which point he's eliminated one civ and forced another (Dutch) into capitulation. Interesting how he doesn't panic when his research slider is down to "absolute zero" for quite a few turns as he patiently assembles his late-Medieval army to force Willem into vassalage. Then he does an abrupt turnabout, gifting most of his invasion force and returning 2 cities to address his gold problem and help Willem get to Military Tradition as a powerful ally.

    It'll be interesting to see how he climbs out of his research hole; he seems to be at least 4 techs behind everybody else. No doubt he's got some beelining tricks up his sleeve. Will pay careful attention to what happens next.

    Thanks for the righteous reply Lymond, and also to Hdatus and Virupaksha. Keep on truckin' folks!
     
  6. lymond

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

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    Deity is a different animal, but much of what AZ does you can take to other levels. It is just the tech pace on Deity is insane, among other things. Took me about a year or so before I started winning on Deity.

    Anyway, the slider is quite a puzzle early on for most new folks, and honestly it is hard to explain in text. It's something you get a feel for after awhile. And managing on higher levels becomes much more important as maintenance costs, across the board, increase dramatically. That's why you hear me redundantly say "focus" this and "focus" that.

    So to put it into some perspective, and not unlike AZ, I spend many parts of the game running research at 0%, especially very early once the 2nd city is settled. Again, it is just something you get used to or accustomed to the more you play and learn. Ideally, the goal is to run 100% research, but that takes gold. It's learning how to get gold and, ofc, building an economy that is key.

    (It's also interesting to note that AZ does a lot of wild and wacky stuff in some of his Deity Let's Play's which often don't have much application on lower levels, but still they are fun to watch. You should try some of his much older vids sometimes like I think a Willem run (he just numbered his vids years ago so you have to dig for it). Anyway, in that game, he pushed to get a vassal early on. He then cut off or traded all his metals and spammed warriors, which he gifted to his vassal Justinian. Justy, using the insane Deity bonuses, is able to upgrade them all to Grenadiers almost instantly (AZ did gift him some gold at times, but still). He then used Justy as a meat puppet to run the rest of the map.

    Anyway, the key things to focus on with his LPs how he manages his cities, expansion and the economy..more the basics. And, ofc, the whip..which he uses very liberally)
     
  7. Jivilov

    Jivilov Warlord

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    Wow. A lotta this stuff is counter-intuitive, but if you think about it, it makes sense. You're sacrificing research in the short run for military now and research (plus military) later on. If you're stuck in a corner of the map with only 6-8 cities you're almost certainly gonna lose anyway so might as well go for it.

    Been playing since Civ3 came out, and got in the habit of winning Space Races on Emperor (never won higher than that). Civ4 Emperor "feels" about 5-10% or so tougher than 3, so old strategies and tactics--fight early on for territory, then turn turtle and concentrate on research and production--don't work.

    Anyway it's been a fun challenge, win or lose. What an incredible game!
     
  8. Lexicus

    Lexicus Deity

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    One of the things I've noticed is that it's much more efficient to either keep the slider at 0 or 100 and not points in between. In my last few games I've been teching noticeably faster because rather than researching techs with the slider as high as I can make it with positive gold income, I've been keeping it at zero to build up gold to fund deficit research at 100% for as long as possible.

    Well, if you're doing a swords rush or something it is, or if you lack copper it can be used to build axes and spears too. But yeah, generally you can leave IW off until later. Typically the choice I face is whether to go for Alpha first or to get math--> currency. I generally don't even think about teching IW because I know some AI will do it for me and I'll be able to trade for it. The tech opened with IW--Compass--also generally isn't needed early unless you have an isolated start and need Optics/Astronomy ASAP (but of course in that case it may be impossible to trade for IW anyway).

    That's definitely true. It's taken me, what, eleven years to realize I shouldn't run the slider as high as possible all the time :D
    Of course, I only started really trying to improve my play a few weeks ago...

    All depends on what you're trying to do. In conquest/dom victory you will often want to run the slider at zero to fund upgrades just after finishing a powerful military tech. It all depends on your tech balance with the AI. If you've just finished your rush tech, like Construction for elepults, then you might not even need any more research if you can just win the game from there.
     
  9. StefanCelMare

    StefanCelMare Chieftain

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    Ok.I read your posts and i learned:
    1.Research worker techs->Beeline Alphabet->Trade for Monarchy/IW->Sell the old techs for gold :)
    2.The research slider should not be at 100% all the time.
    3.Monarchy + Slavery=(almost) no unhappiness.
    4.I should settle more compact.
    5.Food is the KING.
    6.I should be more careful with the GP.

    Okay..A new game.
    I got Saladin.
    There are some SS and the save.
    It would be good if someone will help with the first 75 turns :).
     

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  10. sampsa

    sampsa Ghost

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    You chose to ignore my advice to re-play the Ragnar start (maybe because you don't have the starting save? It was in the autosave folder before you started a new game). Re-playing the same game is in my opinion the best way to learn, as you can clearly see what actions lead to good results and what do not. You know some maps are easy and some maps are hard (especially on fractal!) so it creates a lot of statistical noise i.e. what is actually a bad play might lead to a perceived good result only because the map is so much easier than the average one. This prevents you from learning.

    On to this start. Not the best start for learning basic concepts due to being coastal, awkward starting techs and the abundance of food. Btw, when you post a starting save, do not settle first because people might want to play the game too and settle to a different location. I don't think it matters here though. :)

    My advice would be to play it simple - start with a worker and research Agriculture-Animal husbandry. Use the starting warrior to uncover all tiles within say 5 tiles of your capital to locate the 2nd city site. Move in forests to defend yourself from animals. Post again when worker is built. Or listen to someone else. :)
     
  11. StefanCelMare

    StefanCelMare Chieftain

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    I didn't.I tried to play in parallel a game with Catherine [and I think I losed again..] and my autosave from Ragnar was deleted.
    (Here is a save)
    A question..
    I did what you told me,but shouldn't I research a tech for a religion and fishing?
    Anyway,here is the save with the built worker too.
    Thanks for help.:)
     

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  12. sampsa

    sampsa Ghost

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    No, there are far more important things to do.

    Maybe, which is why I don't like this start for learning. Anyway, two work boats cost you 60:hammers: same as a worker. Two work boats improve two tiles, but a worker built on turn 15 can improve about 50 tiles during the course of the game.
     
  13. sampsa

    sampsa Ghost

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    Good job with the first 15 turns. Warrior is alive which is important.

    What comes to your 2nd city site, you need a location with food. You have yet located only a dry rice (which is only 4:food: when improved) and a non-coastal fish (needs a border pop and fishing). Scout the rice area more since that is likely to be the best spot.

    Awkward start like I said, since now your worker is out but you don't have the tech to improve cows yet. The best way to "wait" with the worker is to build road on cows for one turn (build road, choose worker again and click "cancel"), then farm the floodplain for 3 turns (remember to cancel when Animal husbandry is 1 turn away) then improve cows. Start building a warrior. After AH I would research Mining, intending to go for Bronze working next. Post when cows are improved.
     
  14. lymond

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

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    (resource bubbles on for pics, please)

    Agree with Sampsa, these types of coastal starts are not ideal for you right now, but I think we can make it work. It is not that bad of a start, but your leader has bad starting techs.

    I probably did not clarify, but it is best to get advice even before settling your capital. Advice on analyzing the starting position, where to first move your warrior or scout to get a better look at things before deciding where to settler. You did not move your warrior.

    SIP looks fine here, although an argument could be made to settle on the plains hill(PH) 1NE to not only get the bonus hammer to center tile, but pick up the stone. Counter argument being that SIP is still good, plenty of food, and you might possibly waste some seafood in the fog there to the East, as the land ends 2 tiles away.

    Coastal starts are tougher decision wise depending on the food present - seafood vs. land food, starting techs, unimproved tiles, and simply the decision to go work boat first or worker.

    Fish is a strong resource. Grass cows are pretty good, but fish provides more pure food. Sal basically starts with no worker techs..well The Wheel, which is actually nice . You can basically calculate that your worker will arrive before Animal Husbandry is complete, so you have basically wasted worker turns..although you can lay down a road or two.

    Argument could be made on a start like this to go work boat first, especially with a forest plains hill that you could work immediately to the WB out fast. Meanwhile, tech Mining>BW for slavery and forest chopping which allows chopping of the second WB and other things like a settler. Oh..after first WB, grow on Warrior to size 2 at least until BW is in. Free switch to slavery, whip worker as soon as possible.

    Coastal starts, especially seafood based are generally a bit slower, although they can become strong. Just depends on those opening moves.

    Ha..after writing all that I stupidly realize you don't start with Fishing..duh..so sampsa advice is best here, but I will leave my inane rambling as it can apply to other coastal start situations. Sometimes, even without Fishing at start, you might delay worker, or simply start one, but start WB immediately after Fishing is in, then finish worker.

    Early religion = bad. Let the AIs waste their teching on that stuff. Worker and strat techs are always more important for you, then a focused tech path to Writing>Alpha or whatever to set up trades for all the stuff you don't have.

    Remember, try to hug the coast nearby as well as you scout around to remove fog even out to sea to reveal hidden seafood and potential settles.

    Sampsa, may not be bad city for bureau...is FP farm a waste? or farm first and cottage later? He could send worker to 1S1SW and start road down that way for likely first city.

    Probably too early to talk 2nd city spot without more scouting, but one idea may be that desert hill to the S that would pick up rice eventually, but can share cows. City to W can share a clam
     
  15. lymond

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

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    On another note, just took a look at your Cathy game, which reminded me to suggest something to you. Fractal maps are good and fun, I play them often. However, I would suggest for the purpose of learning that you use Pangaea maps for now. It will give you a better feel for the flow of the game early on, whether expansion or early conquest. Fractal can create some rather imbalanced situations, like the semi-iso with SB, that can be harder to deal with for newer players.

    Also, I highly recommend using your first Great General on a Super Medic. GG opens up Medic III and this super medic is highly valuable in war to heal troops fast and get them back in the fight. Best candidates for super medic are:

    1) chariot - probably most common. chariots/mounted have no defensive bonuses so less likely to take an attack in a stack. (note: Persian IMM do have defensive bonuses as do Conquistadors)
    2) warrior - ideally one that has promoted up to Woodsman III via barb fights early. This is the best one, in fact, as Woody III stacks with Medic III for super healing. However, woody III warrior is often the hardest to achieve if he does not fight enough, or simply dies. I usually don't bother with GG on him unless he actually gets Woody III. (Note: Charismatic trait helps a lot on this). Also, add Morale on this guy for faster movement after getting all the medic promos
    3) Scout - advantage to scout is that it almost impossible for him to defend in an attack and you won't be inclined to use him in a fight either - as you simply can't attack with a scout. You do want your super medic to be safe..always. If my starting scout survives, I try to start him on this path if he has earned some promos..namely give him combat I and medic I early if you get that much XP. If so, he might even be able to get Medic III plus Morale for super movement. Safest choice.

    Generally, you will avoid upgrading your super medic unit so that it does not get too much strength to run the risk of taking an attack if you stack is attack. You might take the free upgrade at some point to a better unit, but try to keep that unit 1 or 2 eras behind in military skill. Anyway, if I'm planning to do a lot of fighting in a game, which is usually always the case, I value having a super medic over anything. It makes a huge difference in a war. And I'm certainly not opposed to creating more than one super medic if I'm fighting extensively or on multiple fronts.

    Settling GGs in a high production city like your Heroic Epic city is fine. However, you might consider a common tactic of just bringing them along with your army. You can use them on a stack, attaching to a unit when your stack has lost a lot of health. The XP from a GG attached to unit in a stack of units spreads that 20 XP over all those units. So select a certain number of unhealthy units..say around 5..and you get 4XP on each unit which generally gives all a promo. As you may have notice, when you promote a unit it gains health. This can be a good way to heal up your armies fast to keep them marching. (note: 5 is just an idea, you can go less or more depending on your needs, but check the XPs on the units when you do to make sure they all get promos)

    OFc, the unit that gets the GG becomes a super unit. It gets free upgrades later and can get Leadership for faster XP, so you may want to decide to put that on an important unit to make it stronger later.
     
  16. sampsa

    sampsa Ghost

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    I don't think farming (some) FPs is bad. Long-term cottages are probably better here, so probably should cottage over farms later. Very early roading I generally dislike, but it does seem like an OK play here.

    I was about to say the same. :) I love fractal too, but for learning purposes pangaea is the best.
     
  17. Jivilov

    Jivilov Warlord

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    Thanks for the explication. Been playing Civ4 on and off as long as you, but probably wouldn't have learned this playing on my own for half a century! Cheers.
     
  18. StefanCelMare

    StefanCelMare Chieftain

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    Here is the save.
    I found horses near the rice :)
     

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  19. sampsa

    sampsa Ghost

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    Good. :)

    Worker: finish farming the floodplain. When done, finish road on cow and start roading towards your 2nd city site.

    Capital: Next turn you will grow to size 2. Work cow + forested plains hill to get warrior out immediately. After that, start settler and put governor back on to automatically work best tiles. (Tip: clicking on city center works)

    Warriors: Uncover all tiles in rice+horse area to best determine where you should be settling. Right now that jungle tile that captures both rice+horse on first ring looks like a candidate. Send the 2nd warrior that way too, to protect from animals when settler arrives.

    Research: Bronze working.

    It might seem strange not to grow capital more before starting a settler. However, the thing is that you don't have many good tiles and your city is not growing very fast due to not having 6:food: or even 5:food: tiles. It's hard to give a rule of thumb, but usually size 3 is the best to start a settler. Here I'm pretty sure that size 2 is the best. Working forest plains hill is so that you can start the settler 1 turn earlier. Putting more food to the food bar without growing is not immediately useful anyway. Post when settler is done.
     
  20. StefanCelMare

    StefanCelMare Chieftain

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    Here is the save.

    Ok...I played in parallel a Pagaea with Catherine again...
    I think it's much better than the last one..
    Anyway I am so bad at early expansion...but I am pretty ahead in technology :)
    2 questions:
    1.Can someone explain me the Vassalage sistem?
    Ok.Huayana capitulated and became the vassal of Saladin..
    But Willem?Why he accepted to be the vassal of Bismarck,and not mine?( I was Pleased with him,like Bismarck).
    2.Should I rush for Cavalry->Cossacks to whip out Hannibal?
    Any other tips are welcome ! :)
     

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