Nobles' Club 286: Alexander of Greece

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Strategy & Tips' started by AcaMetis, Sep 27, 2021.

  1. AcaMetis

    AcaMetis Emperor

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    The Nobles' Club series started out as a way for Noble-level (and below) players to improve their game. Most of the original participants now play at much higher levels, so this has become a way for advanced players to help others learn to play better. You can play your own game at any level and with any mod, but it would be nice to comment on the games of other players and give them advice.

    Our next leader is Alexander of Greece, whom we last played in NC 222; we last played the Greek under Pericles in NC 240. The Greeks start with Fishing and Hunting.
    • Traits: Alexander is Aggressive and Philosophical. Aggressive gives all Melee and Gunpowder units a free Combat I promotion, and gives a +100% :hammers: bonus to Barracks and Drydocks. Philosophical gives all cities +100% :gp: generation and a +100% :hammers: bonus to Universities.
    • The UB: The Odeon, a Colosseum with +1 :), +3:culture:, +2 Artist specialist slots and and additional +1:) with Hit Singles on top of what a regular Colosseum gives. If you ever need to solidify your control of a border city, both in terms of happiness and culture, this is the building you want.
    • The UU: The Phalanx, an Axeman with +100% defence vs. Chariots. With a build-in defence against their intended counter units Phalanxes are the best all-around defensive units in the game until either Horse Archers or Longbows show up. Offensively they're not really better than regular Axes, but not being (as) afraid of getting sniped by 2:move: Chariots does give Phalanxes more freedom in terms of movement.
    And the start:

    Spoiler map details :
    Fractal, Tropical climate, medium sealevel.
    Spoiler edits :
    The usual strategic resource swaps, and a nearby redundant Coal source was swapped with Marble to give the player a few more options.
    Spoiler isolated? :
    Not isolated.
    The WB-saves are attached (zipped; they are bigger than standard saves). To play, simply download and unzip it into your BTS/Saves/WorldBuilder folder. Start the game, and load your favorite MOD (if you use one, if not, check out the BUG MOD), select "Play Scenario", and look for "NC 286 Alexander Noble" (or Monarch, etc., for higher levels). You can play with your favorite MOD at the Level and Speed of your choice. From Quick-Warlord to Marathon-Deity, all are welcome! We stuck with the name "Nobles Club" because it has a cool ring to it.
    Spoiler what's up with specific difficulties :
    In each scenario file you can select your level of difficulty, but that doesn't give the AI the right bonus techs by itself. Use the Noble save for all levels at and below Prince. The Monarch save gives all the AI Archery. Emperor adds Hunting; Immortal adds Agriculture; Deity adds The Wheel.
    Spoiler what is demigod :
    The difference between Immortal and Deity difficulty is akin to the difference between Noble and Immortal. Players eventually reached a point where Immortal was too easy, but Deity was still out of reach, and so neither difficulty provided a fun experience. "Demigod" is an otherwise standard Deity game where the AIs are only given their Immortal level starting units, in an attempt to bridge the gap.
    Spoiler for players on Monarch or above :
    You should add archery as a tech for the barbarians (if you don't, the AI will capture their cities very early). This cannot be done in the WB save file and must be done in Worldbuilder as follows:
    Spoiler how to add techs to the barbarians :

    1. Zoom in all the way so you can't see the rest of the map.
    2. Use the CTRL-W key (or the menu) to enter the worldbuilder. Avoid looking at the mini-map in the lower right corner.
    3. By default you're in "player" mode (look in the box in the upper right; the icon that looks like a person should be selected). You'll get a drop down menu labeled with your leader's name. Barbarians are at the bottom, so cover the rest of the list with your hand if you don't want to see who else is on the map. Select "Barbarians".
    4. Select the "Technologies" tab in the box on the left.
    5. Find Archery (the arrow head icon; 8th row, 3rd column from the right) and click it.
    6. Exit the worldbuilder.
    7. Zoom out again after the map fades, and start playing.
    If you're playing at higher level than Monarch, consider also giving them Hunting at Emperor, Agriculture at Immortal, and The Wheel at Deity.
    Spoiler huts and events :
    Note: The standard saves have no huts and have events turned off. If you want tribal villages and random events, choose the saves with "Huts" in their names. If you want huts but no events, select the Huts saves and use Custom Scenario to turn on the option that suppresses events.
     

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  2. AcaMetis

    AcaMetis Emperor

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    Holy food :drool:! I'm guessing scout 1N -> 1NE to see why the game is recommending that particular tile, and depending on what the scout finds either SIP for the T0 settle with plenty of food, or move 1W(1N?) to grab the Cow as well.

    Barring goodies in the fog I'm thinking SIP, since that seems to me like the fastest start. It doesn't lose a turn of growth/research to moving, saves an early tech since you don't need AH to improve Cow, and I don't think the capital can use triple corn and grass cow for a couple thousand years at the earliest anyway. So SIP, AG -> Mining -> BW to improve food first, then go towards copper scan, chops and slavery. Probably Wheel -> Pottery afterwards to start cottaging the capitol once some of those forests are gone, unless AH is needed to feed other cities. AH just for one cow is kind of expensive, and whatever city settles the cow is more than likely going to have a wet Corn it can share with the capital anyway, so it won't be hurting for a 4:food:2:hammers: tile.

    Does that sound like a plan to the experts, or is there a better approach to take :)?
     
  3. zahoo

    zahoo Chieftain

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    Agree with moving 1N -> 1NE with the scout. By seeing jungle to the north, I guess the starting location is a bit towards the south, therefore settling the blue circle tile can make sense as it grabs more land. Capital would still keep both wet corns and a bunch of river tiles. Also, the hill 1N2E from the settler seems to be coastal, and SIP could kill some seafood.
     
  4. krikav

    krikav Theorycrafter

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    One reason to possibly move would be to make food sharing easier.
    If we either settle SW or 2N1W a city can be settled on the other spot and both cities can share the two irrigated corns.
    With the greeks horrid starting techs, making sure you can settle a second city along the river is kind of important, as TW is a costly tech and it might be very beneficial if it can be delayed.
     
  5. 5tephen

    5tephen Warlord

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    Difficult start - maybe regenerate the map? Where will I put any cottages with all that corn cluttering the place? ;)
     
  6. elmurcis

    elmurcis Emperor

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    Corn is overrated - cottage it!
     
  7. jnebbe

    jnebbe Warlord

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    Should be a fun map. I think I get monarchy too late in majority of my games so this might be good practice for getting it earlier
     
  8. Fish Man

    Fish Man Emperor

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    This seems like a good map to attempt the "no agriculture" challenge :lol:
     
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  9. konata_LS

    konata_LS Warlord

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    Satan's voice :satan: : settle on the wet Corn:devil: ! <-- :jesus:: don't do that, just don't :nono:.

    The wet Corns are certainly good. But these forests would take more turns to be chopped, since Mining-BW are still long with Greek's starting techs. If SIP, it's even impossible to put cottage before BW, so early :commerce: would certainly be a problem :think:. But forests are still good anyway, since forests provide early :hammers:.

    From T0 to T75 :o
    Spoiler :

    Settings as below. No tribal village.


    SIP. Agri-Mining-BW-TW. Settled my second city near Copper and it could share a Corn from the capital. Started building/chopping Phalanxes :ar15:.


    From 2000 BC, my scout wandering around Ragnar's borders noticed a suspicious tile (the orange circle in the picture below). The event log showed Ragnar only adopted Slavery in 1680 BC, so that suspicious tile could not be Iron and was probably Horse (I couldn't see the Horse because I skipped AH). Very good. Hopefully Ragnar would build more chariots:satan:. Tech Sailing because I wanted to connect the future captured cities to my capital :satan:.


    2 cities Phalanxes rush. Who cares about cottage. Who cares about Marble or wonders. AGG + Copper nearby + forests to chop = Put all the :hammers: into units and DoW :ar15:


    T75 Ragnar disappeared. Had 5 cities: 2 cities built with 3 cities captured. But the tech rate was already terrible :sad:.


    As shown in the screenshot above, at 0% :science:, 0 :gold:, very close to the strike :o. I should not have neglected cottage :hammer2:.

    With such high :food:, I certainly needed Monarchy and made my cities grow. The Wine resources also needed Monarchy. But the problem was, until T70, no one had Alphabet. And I was quite far from Monarchy - I still hadn't Myst :wallbash: .


    Even Myst would take 60+ turns in my current situation :hammer2:. Self-tech Alphabet would take forever for me :hammer2:. The captured workers were chopping a Library at Ragnar's former capital. If the tech situation remained desperate for the upcoming turns, at least I would use my first GScientist to bulb Alphabet and build :science: to finish Currency :o. Maybe I could get AH or Myst through trade as well.

    Anyway, Alphabet and tech trading are still quite far. The most urgent thing at the moment is how to avoid strike :blush:.

    A good lesson to learn for me is, do not neglect early cottage, especially when there is no Gold or Gem nearby :hide:.
     
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2021
  10. Gressulf

    Gressulf Chieftain

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    Interesting start.
    I think, as someone mentioned, that moving 2N1W could be a good idea in order to share the food a bit better. You also have to consider that 1N2E is Coast and that SIP could ruin some seafood. This would be possible to settle if we move 2N1W, and considering the Greek start with fishing and seeing that cottages are far away, 2N1W would be a good idea. It also looks like 2N1W is where the river meets the ocean, so 2N1W could also be a coastal city, thus getting the commerce boost early.

    Also, worth noting, the game is not giving me a blue circle on the 2N1W spot (and I usually get it, so not turned off).

    Spoiler Start :

    Civ4ScreenShot0094.JPG
     
  11. konata_LS

    konata_LS Warlord

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    @Gressulf
    Spoiler :

    If it was Temperate climate, it would become tempting to move towards 2N1W for a coastal capital, better :commerce: , and potentially grab GLH with so many forests. But the map details tell us that it's a Tropical climate map, which means moving away from the starting place may end up in many unwanted jungles tiles. So moving might be a little risky under Tropical settings.
     
  12. Gressulf

    Gressulf Chieftain

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    @konata_LS
    Spoiler :

    I moved to 2N1W and I like the position better tbh. Did get some jungle tiles, but also some cottageable tiles. Only problem... there are NO production tiles.
     
  13. Fish Man

    Fish Man Emperor

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    @AcaMetis You made one, crucial mistake when making this map...

    Spoiler :

    You didn't give Hatty any metal :lol::lol::lol:!!!

    Spoiler :

    upload_2021-9-28_1-42-42.jpeg


    Spoiler :

    upload_2021-9-28_1-44-11.jpeg


    Oh, earlier in the game, I killed Ragnar too. He popped gems in his capital too…which soon became my gems :).
    Spoiler :

    upload_2021-9-28_1-45-14.jpeg


    That's right, this was a double phalanx rush...I completely wiped out TWO civs with just phalanxes, netting almost 20 cities before 1AD. They completely neutered chariots and war chariots, whereas with any other civ this may not even have been possible given how many chariots/WCs Ragnar and Hatty spammed - with the defense bonus, however, those units became basically sitting ducks in cities, free pickings for my city raider horde. Never say the Greek UU is useless again!

     

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    Last edited: Sep 28, 2021
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  14. Gressulf

    Gressulf Chieftain

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    I like this map.
    My progress so far 2600 BC (Immortal, No huts/events).

    Spoiler :

    Settled 2N1W got the coast, which were crucial to researching the early techs. Went Agri - Mining - Bronze since capital has no production tiles. Bronze Working finished 2800 BC (1 turn ahead of chop) and I did a slow warrior growing to size three, then a three pop settler, working the three corn, supplementing with one chop. After Bronze, I went for The Wheel and will go for Pottery next, then Writing I guess.

    My scouting and thoughts on City Placement. Second City will be next to the Copper. It has many hills and will make up for the loss in hammers from capital. Third City will most likely go right under capital to share the two corns.

    Spoiler :

    Civ4ScreenShot0096.JPG


     
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2021
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  15. sylvanllewelyn

    sylvanllewelyn Perma-newb

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    To the viewer (me), it feels like the map was designed this way.

    Did you research agriculture?
     
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  16. AcaMetis

    AcaMetis Emperor

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    Well...:mischief:
    Spoiler :
    Kinda both, I guess? This was another one of those "trust the Civ IV RNG to make a better map than I could" situations, and although it took a few tries to get here (you have no idea how often the game rolled Hammurabi as an opponent...) I liked the situation this map presenting. There's enough good land available to play a peaceful game while leveraging PHI to it's maximum potential (Great Library/National Epic in your capital, bulb Philosophy and adopt Pacifism, the usual approach), but if you're interested in warfare there's options to go to war either very early (Phalanx rush), less early (bulb along the Construction path, unfortunately you start with Fishing so no early Engineering gambit) or late (AGG Grens with 5xp can get Amphibious out the gate, Cuirs could be on the table if you can secure Iron and Horse (I genuinely can't remember if you have horses nearby, so...go me :goodjob:. Might be able to trade for them, though)), and in any case you'll find yourself presented with some kind of challenge you should have the means to overcome. Peaceful gets a face full of CRE culture, but you have Odeons to fight back; early rushes destroy your economy and/or set you back majorly, but you have PHI to bulb your way back into the trade game in either case; late amphibious attacks have to deal with neighbour diplomacy and colonial maintenance, but you've got plenty of time to prepare peace treaties/distractions and to settle enough cities to do the whole "pre-build Courthouses, build FP in capital, build cheap Palace on new world to skip colonial maintenance" dance; late neighbour attacks can't do anything directly about the other AIs potentially running away with the game and/or teching Rifling/Assembly Line and becoming that much harder to crack, but if you can succeed at taking over your continent chances are you'll be able to catch up in time, and if not you've got a veteran army that should be able to take out at least one or two problematic culture cities, or something along those lines.

    Also I was pretty sure the Egyptian leader the game rolled was Ramesses II, not Hatty. Guess Ramesses was on the prior attempt and I didn't check, oops :hammer2:.
     
  17. 5tephen

    5tephen Warlord

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    This looks like a really nice start and I haven’t fed back my progress from a NC game in a while so I’ll give this one a go.

    Capital settlement thoughts:
    - Coast to the east, SIP could spoil seafood
    - Jungle north
    - Opportunity to share two wet corn as per @krikav
    - Fogged tile 2E of settler may be a resource as 3 resource tiles revealed so far and it’s the only unforested fogged tile in original BFC
    - 1W/1N1W grabs all 3 corn and the cow but can’t share both river corn which makes for a slightly less good balance between capital and second city but a great capital long-term
    - Based on all of this, most promising capital sites look to be 1S1W or 2N1W, both can be settled T1
    - Given 1S1W moves away from jungle and puts capital on a hill, all else being equal this would be my preferred capital therefore I will move scout 2N1E to double check I’m not missing something amazing

    Tech
    - Agriculture first, no question
    - Mining -> bronze working after for chopping out some barb defence and whipping workers/settlers
    - TW -> pottery after for early cottages as little natural commerce

    Barbarian defence
    - Probably aggressive warriors alone will be fine, slight concern with lack of natural hammers

    Looking at getting a warrior out before first settler I think capital will grow to size 3 and get warrior out the same turn, then switch to a 9 turn settler which will probably come out before BW is in meaning the spare worker turns will probably be spent on a mine

    Spoiler Turn 0, no spoiler potential dotmap :
    Civ4ScreenShot0000.JPG
     
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  18. krikav

    krikav Theorycrafter

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    I wonder if it might make sense to go 2 workers here.. Followed by a revolt to slavery and 3pop whip the first settler.
    Would give us more time to get some warriors out, and having two workers around the time when BW is in is always neat.



    I like these lines of reasoning.
    Little things like moving away from the jungle and getting the capital on a hill (thereby killing a hill and sparing a flatland) is not to be neglected.
     
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  19. 5tephen

    5tephen Warlord

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    @krikav
    I've never gone two workers before second city and would be really interested to hear your thoughts on that. I think we'd still be some way away from pottery by the time we got the second worker and my intuition tells me the first would be chopping out the second and then they'd both be chopping warriors with forest I might prefer to turn into granaries? *If I did do this would it be wrong to chop out an aggressive barracks so my warriors are better from the start... (I'm thinking it probably would!)

    Edit:* I've concluded barracks is a bad idea this early - even with combat 2 or equivalent I would still double up a warrior to protect a city for example and although it's nice to head towards getting started down the woodsman promotions or a level 4 unit for HE, even with aggressive, that's a frivolous use of early hammers.
     
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2021
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  20. krikav

    krikav Theorycrafter

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    Making a correct judgement of when to go two workers is very hard... I like to look for the option though since I think there is so much safety involved in it.
    If you got two workers you get ahead in workerturns fast, and you can stay abit lighter on workers later on.
    One primary thing that speaks for it is that this city will grow extremly fast, and that a settler can be whipped shortly after.
    Another very important thing is that we lack natural hammers. There is corn, and we have a 1 hammer city center. So one lone natural hammer....
    Compare this to if you got a plains-hill settlement and work a wheat where you get 3 natural hammers.
    Warriors will be very slow here, and if you get an extra worker out, you can chop much faster, gaining early hammers.
    You can also afford the luxery to make a mine or two, something that can be hard to prioritize when workerturns are very scarse.

    I like the idea of chopping a barracks, but that really depends on the layout of the land. If there is loads of attackvectors for barbs, and copper doesn't show up... Well then I want strong warriors. :)
    If the land can be easily fogbusted.. well, then spending those 25 hammers on a barracks might as well go into two warriors and complete the fogbusting net.
     

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