Nobles' Club 287: Mao Zedong of China

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Strategy & Tips' started by AcaMetis, Oct 11, 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 Mao Zedong of China, whom we last played in NC 225; we last played the Chinese under Qin Shi Huang in NC 237. The Chinese start with Agriculture and Mining.
    • Traits: Mao Zedong is Expansive and Protective. Expansive adds +2:health: to all cities, gives a +100%:hammers: bonus to Granaries and Harbors, and a +25%:hammers: bonus to Workers (note that the worker bonus doesn't apply to excess :food: directly converted to :hammers:). Protective gives all Archery and Gunpowder units a free City Garrison I (+20% City Defence) and Drill I (+1 First Strike chance) promotion, as well as a +100%:hammers: bonus to Walls and Castles.
    • The UB: The Pavilion, a Theatre with +25%:culture:. The bonus isn't going to do anything if you're not generating massive amounts of culture in the first place, but when you are it can turn the tide of a high-stakes cultural battle in your favor.
    • The UU: The Cho-Ko-Nu, a Crossbow with +2 First Strike instead of +1 FS and Collateral Damage up to 60%. Ever wanted to rain death down upon your enemies' flanks while raining death down upon the enemies directly in front of you? Yeah. Aside from a lack of ways to deal with city defences these guys are walking siege units that mow down Melee units and don't care overly much about anything else. Less than most Knights would fear a Pike, at any rate.
    And the start:

    Spoiler map details :
    Fractal, Rocky climate, Medium Sealevel.
    Spoiler edits :
    A few strategic resource swaps to give AIs nearby strategic resources.
    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 287 Mao 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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    Tricky :think:. Mystery tiles all over the place, and only one Warrior that can make one move before it's the Settler's turn. 1SW would reveal the two plains tiles, 1SE would reveal the open grass hill tile, and 1NW would reveal two open grassland tiles. Based on that I'd say move the warrior 1NW, move in that direction if he finds something worth moving for (probably settle 1N in that case, I'm guessing?), and if there's nothing tempting than SIP.

    What do the experts think :)?
     
  3. Heathcliff

    Heathcliff Tactician

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    Sip tech AH , worker first
     
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  4. Nick723

    Nick723 Warlord

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    That’s definitely one option, and probably what I’d end up doing.

    With expansive however, you could justify moving a bit more often here. Any 3:hammers: tile would give you quicker worker (or a 2:hammers: city centre). T2 settle on the plains hill to the north, for example, would then give a 10turn worker which would give you an earlier worker than sip. Whether that’s worth it depends on what’s up north, and hard to know that ahead of time.

    Another example - is that a plains hill forest 2S1E of settler? If so, the a settle 1S1E could be another choice. Probably lower risk than heading north as keeps both sheep and pig.
     
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  5. krikav

    krikav Theorycrafter

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    I second @Nick723 here. With expensive we should really look for better options.
    Either if we can settle somewhere to get a 2 hammer city center and pair that with a 1F2H forest...
    Or if we can find a 3H forested plains hill..
    Or if we can find a 3F tile somewhere so we can grow to pop2 and then build the worker with two 1F2H tiles.
     
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  6. Nick723

    Nick723 Warlord

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    I guess the devils advocate to the point I just made is...

    how quickly will we research animal husbandry?
    does the worker actually have anything useful to do before then? Moving costs 8-9:commerce: per turn
     
  7. Snowbird

    Snowbird Prince

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    There is 3 hammer hill visible, so 1N is like a default move. (could mine the pig or farm something in NW - unforested mystery ties seem to be riverside).

    So, I would try to see something which could change that decision... warrior 1SW, although I am not sure what has to be in there - wheat maybe. Other mystery tiles get covered by fat cross if moved 1N.
     
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  8. Fippy

    Fippy Mycro Junkie Queen

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    I'll echo Snowbird, unless the warrior sees something great on the 2sw tile, 1N > SIP.
    Much better actually..river continues there as well and looks green.
     
  9. civac

    civac Prince

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    Base tech cost of AH is 100 beakers. This is multiplied by 1.3 for Standard map size and the multiplied again for difficulty. Let's take deity, should be 1.3, so 169 total beakers. Research is 12 beakers per turn when working the forested plains hill and 13 beakers per turn when working the pigs. So AH will be one turn late.

    BW will be significantly late, 5-7 turns.
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2021
  10. Araius

    Araius Chieftain

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    Played up to turn 25. Immortal.

    Spoiler :

    Moved the warrior 1 NW. After seeing wet corn, settling 1N seemed like a no brainer for the turn 14 worker.

    Met every other civ by turn 15, I'm getting a bad feeling this is a Terra map.
    Shouldn't be a problem with these though. ;)
    Civ4ScreenShot0008.JPG
     
  11. Qactus

    Qactus Romani ite domum

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    Nice one, some Cho-Ko-Nu action is just what I needed!
    Spoiler :
     
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  12. Nick723

    Nick723 Warlord

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    Deity NH/NE till turn 98

    Spoiler :

    Saw the corn and settled 1N. Immediate decision of BW or Hunt->AH. Decided to go BW first, which I think was a good move given how boxed in we are.

    Where to put the first city?!

    Spoiler :

    Screenshot (97).png

    In the end, went a long way south to grab the pigs. I had decided to go wheel->pottery before hunting->AH, probably a mistake.

    Planned for a construction attack with elephants. Went horseback riding after writing as seemed the most logical trading chip, was able to pickup alpha, maths, monarchy.

    T98 i have just teched constructions, feels quite slow but I do have 6 cities, for what that's worth. I think Mansa has to be the target? EDIT = maybe Ragnar given Mansa is on Feudalism? (Sitting Bull already has Feudalism...)

    Spoiler T98 state of play :

    Screenshot (100).png
    Screenshot (101).png

    Any thoughts on next tech / target?

    Would be keen to see how the experienced deity players get to elephants 20 turns earlier ;)

     

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  13. konata_LS

    konata_LS Warlord

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    Satan's voice :satan: : settle on the pig:devil: ! <-- :jesus:: don't do that. Just don't.

    Mao's traits are not strong, but Chinese good starting techs largely compensate the leader traits. Even SIP, this start is acceptable for China, as BW and AH are all only one tech away.

    The uncovered grassland at 1N of the pig look suspicious, maybe there is some strategic resource like Horse or Copper :think:...? That plain hill forest 2N of the pig is tempting. If there is no other 3 :hammers: tiles around the settler, I might settle 1N.

    Spoiler Monarch from T0 to T72 :

    Settings as below. No tribal village.


    Move the warrior 1N and found another 3 :hammers: tile at 1E of the pig. So I didn't see any advantage to waste 1 turn and decided to SIP. Though after SIP, missing that wet Corn was a regret.


    AH-BW-TW-Pot-Writing-Alphabet.

    On T72, 5 cities. Workers are chopping a settler in the capital.


    Tech situation on T72 (sometimes I wonder why Ragnar refused to tech Agri around 1120BC :crazyeye:)


    No intention to finish, but Elepults looks obvious to me. Medieval wars with CKN+Maces+trebs are another possibility.



    With abundant forests around the capital, this map provides a good opportunity to leverage EXP workers. Also it lets the players know how Chinese starting techs ensure a fast start in an inland start - if we change the leader from Mao to Toku or Saladin, this start would become painfully slow. But I'm afraid that I won't have time to finish this, as currently playing a Lizzy map (NC253). Besides, I just finished an off-line game with Mao last week but I've never played as Lizzy after moving to Prince level and above. So I prefer to focus on that Lizzy map first (that map is really interesting!). From here I'll stop and just watch :popcorn:. Thanks for the map :).

    Looking forward to seeing how people play this game, especially some Medieval warfare with CKN :D.
     
  14. konata_LS

    konata_LS Warlord

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    @Araius
    Spoiler :

    Similar experience as yours. It looks all the neighbours are quite close. Luckily we have Ivory :devil:.


    @Qactus
    Hero shows beautiful and epic scenes about traditional arts and warfare in Ancient China. Though the story mainly is about Qin, another Chinese leader in civ 4.

    @Nick723
    Spoiler :

    It looks like you've got some useful techs through trade :clap:

    Ragnar's target might be SB, as they already have border tentions near Bjørgvin :think:.
     
  15. krikav

    krikav Theorycrafter

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    Spoiler T83 :

    I had a hunch that there was more to the start than met the eye, so I went south with the warrior and north with the settler to get a clearer view.
    Civ4ScreenShot0000.JPG
    Then I went SW to plant on the ivory.
    Civ4ScreenShot0001.JPG

    Went hunting first, had planned to go for AH next, but here I changed my mind and wanted to play for accelerated commerce. I want to forgo expansion in favour of a faster construction attack.
    TW->Pottery next, the fast expansive granaries would be nice too I figured, and corn+ minedsheep+ivory would provide a quick enough settler.
    Civ4ScreenShot0003.JPG

    Settler at pop3, overflowing through warrior here, wasn't possible to arrange smoother.
    Civ4ScreenShot0004.JPG

    Shanghai was placed very close to ensure I could work/mature alot of cottages and also not having to pay the coins in upkeep. Here I pay just 2gpt for that city.
    Was going for a further away third city, but by that time I was already sort of boxed in. A decent third city was placed here though, being able to further help with cottages and share the foods.

    At writing, a lone chop and two turns of 5H made for a 2pop whip of the library in Shanghai, capitals library was completely chopped.
    Third city I figured would be so bleak that I wanted to skip library there, but I later had to backtrack on that since I needed the culture and didn't want to slow down research too much by pre-building units.
    Civ4ScreenShot0005.JPG

    Sitting bull took the spot where I figured I could put a gift city!
    Civ4ScreenShot0008.JPG

    Aestethics is done, and I have now put one turn into alpha to get that in trade. Have points on Mansa so I see what he is up to!
    He is going for math so I delay trading until he is done with that, since Elizabeth (I think it was) also has alpha I can get everythign I want at the same time. Ragnar has no copper, only horses!
    Civ4ScreenShot0009.JPG


    Sahnghai was put on GSCi duty asap, but with mansa teching just as he should I don't need to bulb anything. I also have ideas of bulbing machinery+engineering, but we will see how that goes. Will have good teching power just as it is, and elepult is strong enough.

    Doing HBR here, planning to trade it for about half of construction.
    Civ4ScreenShot0010.JPG

    Apparantly I had to put just a little bit into math to get it too, so I do that.
    Then Alpha from Sittingbull, Math from Mansa and later Aestethics+alpha from Elizabeth for IW, she was probably going for Alpha.
    I choose aetethics because I would rather have the AIs spending time on wonders than building nasty catapults.
    8 turns later though, Elizabeth asks kindly for math and I give it to her, will get her friendly that way.
    Civ4ScreenShot0012.JPG

    Academy time. I didn't have time to save up cash because I wanted to seal the HBR<-> Construction deal with Mansa which went through T83 with 293 beakers into construction.
    Civ4ScreenShot0020.JPG
     
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  16. krikav

    krikav Theorycrafter

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    Spoiler T89 :


    Construction from mansa, and I realize I'm now friendly with Elizabeth. Full steam ahead into metalcasting and hope for the best!
    Civ4ScreenShot0022.JPG

    What a lovely gal! I promise I'll stay Buddhist for the rest of the game! Do send more missionaries and continue to tech good stuff and I'm sure we can arrange some future that doesn't involve elephant hoves trampling over Englishly sounding cities!
    In the background 4 (or was it 5?) workers is pre-chopping all forests which have previosly been sacred. They are intended for the current burst.
    Civ4ScreenShot0023.JPG

    Thank you Mansa.
    Civ4ScreenShot0024.JPG

    No huge army, but Ragnar doesn't seem ready for this.
    Civ4ScreenShot0025.JPG
    Tbh... I would have wanted to continue to build up, but I have a tight schedule.... Wanted to hit last turn really to avoid any nasty spears but the elephant needed to get up, was taken by suprise by the HAs.
    If he has cash, I think he could have upgraded some warriors now.
    Civ4ScreenShot0027.JPG

    Civ4ScreenShot0028.JPG
    This will be fun!
    Civ4ScreenShot0029.JPG


     

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  17. krikav

    krikav Theorycrafter

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    @Nick723
    Spoiler :

    I have T100 as a sort of benchmark turn when I want to strike with catapults and elephants. So if you just reached construction thats abit late, but with more cities you can sustain a much stronger attack so it's no big deal.
    Elepult can iron on against longbows but it's better for a secondary target. (For hill cities, elephants promoted with flank1+2 to gain immunity against first strikes make sure that you can wound nasty top defending longbows.)

    You emphasised productin with BW and managed to secure a good chunk of land, thats exacly how I would have played it, where it not for the ivory. With ivory I know I can break out and with Mansa around I know trades will be available so that attack should be fast too.
    Getting 6 cities in this cramped position is nice.

    A small point about monarhy... If you don't really need it, it can make sense to not even trade for it. Depends on which AI reaches it first. But if it's say Sitting bull who got monarchy first, you could have accelerated the appearance of longbows dramatically by trading it from him and then spreading it around.

     
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  18. krikav

    krikav Theorycrafter

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    Spoiler T100 :


    Lost one catapult up until this point, after that, Ragnar started to do alot of suicidal attacks with hordes of HAs. (Who slams HAs into war elephants?!)
    Civ4ScreenShot0000.JPG

    I had started to think about going for sitting bull next, and then he drops a culture bomb at me right after I have improved the gold mine...
    "And that... that I can't forgive."
    Civ4ScreenShot0002.JPG
    I should have stayed put with my team who denied iron, because here he has managed to reconnect it and built an axe. That was the only metal unit I saw though.
    Civ4ScreenShot0003.JPG

    Civ4ScreenShot0005.JPG
    I researched machinery, a while it looked like I could get about half of it from Elizabeth from Currency, but then she finished currency herself (or traded for it...?) so I snailed my way through it anyway.
    Production potential in my cities is very low... Can't really whip and I'm still ages away from possibly bulbing engineering.
    Perhaps try to do a brief stint against sitting bull with the units I have, and once I can make no more progress ceasefire and recovery...? Could settle two fishing villages up north which are nice with GLH.
    Civ4ScreenShot0006.JPG
    Could get CoL from mansa, revolt to caste and get the engineering bulb guy out in 13 turns or so. But thats likely not worth it... Slow-cruise to monotheism, trade for monarchy and revolt to HR+OR and start building forges...?
    Litterature for heroic? Shanghai is a super nice heroic spot.

    Saladin seems to have gotten into economical troubles, the only city I have seen from him was smack in the jungle and he lacked IW for ages.
    Cathy is plotting and I think it's against Mansa or Elizabeth.. Would be lovely if she DoWs sitting bull so I could backstab him
    Civ4ScreenShot0007.JPG
    9 elephants, 5 archers, 5 catapults and two swords. Adding a halfdozen Chukus to that should do wonders!
    Civ4ScreenShot0008.JPG
    Ragnars nasty HAs...
    Civ4ScreenShot0009.JPG



     
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  19. Snowbird

    Snowbird Prince

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    to T46
    Spoiler :

    So, early on I met bunch of guys and the climate is rocky. Screw the barb defense let's look for some premium land.


    Cultural borders meant I mostly scouted SW and NE, nearly missed the cereals in between mountains.
    So three cute cities

    The fourth would go NW - riverside grassland with shared corn, then maybe into FP gold area (if I can get there) - far away expedition has a problem of me not having units to protect - shanghai already had hairy moments. so far lots of food and lots of potential commerce.

    I definitely have enough room to either tech up or try late charge of the elephants if any neighbors seem to be weak enough (Mansa maybe).

    I looked at Krikav's game at the same time - scary how the land has been grabbed by AI...


    I don't really see the game as worth the effort to play out. Guess, I am just too lazy
     
  20. Araius

    Araius Chieftain

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    Spoiler T142 :

    Had a fairly smooth game. Kept ahead in tech and attacked Saladin, taking two of his cities. He lacked military techs, had decent cities and was disliked by pretty much everyone so he seemed like a good pick.
    Except big problem, I fought the war terribly. I lost an entire stack of trebs because I decided in my wisdom to guard them with one elephant. If that didn't happen I probably could've taken all of Arabia.
    Not only that, I forgot to change civics after the end of my golden age so I had Pacifism running the whole time during the war.

    Civ4ScreenShot0009.JPG
    Civ4ScreenShot0010.JPG
    Civ4ScreenShot0011.JPG


    I still feel ahead, but man do I feel demoralised with how dumb I am sometimes.
     

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