Nobles' Club 303: Washington of America


May 21, 2018
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 Washington of America, whom we last played in NC 241; we last played the Americans under Lincoln in NC 265. The Americans start with Agriculture and Fishing.
  • Traits: Washington is Charismatic and Expansive. Charismatic gives every city, Monuments and Broadcast Towers +1:), and decreases the exp required for units to level by 25%. 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:).
  • The UB: The Mall, a Supermarket with +20% :gold: and +1 :) with Hit Musicals, Hit Singles and Hit Movies. Generally regarded as a useless UB that comes far too late to make any sort of difference, it nevertheless manages to be a welcome addition to a rush-buy strategy for it's increased gold output, or a standard Caste/State Property hammer economy to help offset Emancipation anger.
  • The UU: The Navy SEAL, a Marine with 1-2 First Strikes and a free March promotion, allowing the unit to heal while moving. Usually dismissed as irrelevant since few games ever reach the era in which these guys show up, Navy SEALS nevertheless set a new standard for terrors from the sea that Ragnar's Berserkers only manage to reach due to taking City Raider promotions into the gunpowder era.
And the start:

Spoiler map details :
Fractal, Temperate, High sealevel.
Spoiler edits :
Strategic resource swaps, and two unworkable Fish were moved to workable positions on your shores.
Spoiler isolated? :
Full Iso.
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 303 Washington 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.

24-05 EDIT: Fixed the issue with no hut scenario files still having huts enabled.


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I, eh...I mean fling the Warrior SW to see if there's anything especially delicious in that direction, but other than that I think I'd just take a T0 PH settle with a wet wheat and five floodplains. Might not be the best choice, but I hope it'll be good enough, at least. Sadly no EXP bonus on the first worker, but working a floodplain is good enough. Not ideal, of course, but absence anything better it'll do.

What do the experts think :)?
Nice! Just finished btom 235 and ready for a new map! Washington have nice traits and starts with AGG.. UU an UB gives little to no help.. but overall a nice leader!

Sip gives a 11 turn worker. You get EXP bonus on t5 the forest plaind. 5 x 5 = 25 then 6 x 6 = 36 = 60 hammers and 1 h overflow.

Think, sip. Mining, BW, TW and pot. Looking for a 2 pop settler wiph into workers! REX is going to be fast! :)

And marble.. hm..
SIP is a good National Epic candidate, if not the most graceful bureau capitol :queen:
Satan's voice :satan: : settle on Wheat :devil:! <-- :jesus: : don't do that. Just don't :nono:.

Only one :food: resource near the settler - maybe there are some other resources hidden in the fog...? :think: After all, I think SIP is good enough. That marble makes things interesting - probably Poly-Aesthetics and grabbing GLib?... Or settle the second city on the marble...? But it depends on the land and neighbours though. If scouting reveals that I'm boxed in, I'd prefer building units to building wonders.

It's important to "play the map, not the leader". But I have to admit the leader traits might change some decisions in the game: for example Myst becomes tempting with Cha leaders; by contrast, when playing CRE leaders, I usually delay Myst until I need Priesthood-Monarchy.

It seems that the last Louis NC is really popular and many people are still playing/discussing that one :lol:. Currently I've just started the Asoka NC - I've wanted to try NC 295 since I finished that Hammi game.
Spoiler :

This map reminds me of that Stalin one, also isolation with marble. Although Washington doesn't benefit from cheap wonders as Stalin does, CHA certainly helps for the early extra :)-. I might play this map at Emperor until Optics or Astro, though won't have time to finish this.
Sip gives a 11 turn worker. You get EXP bonus on t5 the forest plaind. 5 x 5 = 25 then 6 x 6 = 36 = 60 hammers and 1 h overflow.

Strange.. the leftover hammer from the worker vanish anyone know why?

Also.. TW and pottery might also be a good opening her!
From 4000BC to 900AD
Spoiler :

Settings as below, no tribal villages

SIP. Mining-TW-Pottery-BW, then Myst-Poly-Masonry-PH. I went to PH through Poly, because of the marble, also because Meditation opens Philo bulb. In Pangaea or Inland sea maps, I usually get PH through Medication; in isolation, Meditation becomes a tech that I prefer to avoid before Astro bulb.

T67 Oracle finished in New York. Decided to choose Monarchy. It was cheaper than MC, but it offered direct advantages for the :)- from HR and Wines:

Got some failgold from ToA :cool:

A GGeneral in 150AD, quite early for Emperor AIs :satan:

Failgold from Parthenon helped funding research and upgraded triremes to caravels :cool:

Built 6 cities before Astro. There were 2 or 3 spots to backfill after Astro.

Probably I made a mistake here: I planned to send caravels to meet AIs, getting Alphabet and Math/Calendar through trade, then double bulb Astro. But the game proved me wrong - or just I was too clumsy at scouting: my caravels sailed across the ocean but didn't meet anyone for a long time :sad:. So I ended up self-teching Math and Calendar. When I finally met the first AI, I was already at the middle of getting Alphabet.

Not sure whether this trade with Hammi is necessary or not, but I thought "even saving 2 turns for Astro would help my economy" :undecide:

After getting Alphabet from Hammi, immediately used 2 GScientists to bulb Astro. Not a good date, but it's the best I can do now.
For CHA leaders, Astronomy had a side effect: the +1:)- from the monument disappeared with Astro :o.

One caravel sailed along the Babylonian coast and found Qin. Qin and Hammi shared a continent, no religion.
Another caravel met Toku and Pacal, both of them Hindu. Pacal built Hindu AP but only had 6 or 7 cities. Toku had 10+ cities. Pacal might peaceful vassal to Toku :undecide:.
But where were the two last AIs? :confused:

A third caravel went towards the south and met a caveman : 840AD no PH, no Monarchy. Only 4 cities for an IMP leader :hmm:

2 or 3 turns later, met another caveman who had neither Monarchy nor Alphabet :crazyeye:.

Oh, it seemed Monty and Charlie were semi-isolated. Monty founded Judaism and Charlie Buddhism. They were busy killing each other for a long time and both of them remained in the stone age :lol:.
Well, isolation is difficult but still better than "semi-isolation with warmonger" - if the human players starts at Charlie's place, that would be tougher than isolation.

Got Feudalism through trade, because it was all I could get. Getting CS was better, but only Pacal had CS and he was unwilling to trade it :wallbash:. Same for Engineering: Qin had it but didn't want to trade with me:gripe:. Toku just founded Taoism :eek: .

Sell my horse to Pacal for 9 :gold: per turn. Also got some :health: and :)- via trade:

The capital looks decent: SIP is not a bad choice. It's a little weird that no one builds MoM, so I'm trying to get some failgold :lol:

Judging from tech situation and AIs' land, the game looks winnable, although Pacal's AP might cause some trouble. But I have to stop here and go back to my NC 295 game now :lol:. Will post my NC295 write-up in a few days :).

Isolation is not recommended for people who just move up to a new difficulty, but isolation offers nice challenge and opportunities to improve playing skills. Even people don't always have time to deal with the long and tedious late game, playing the early turns already provides precious practice of empire management. Besides, the tech pace of this map is quite forgiving, given that many AIs are semi-isolated. Plus, our island has all important strategic resource (Copper, Horse, Iron), so the player doesn't need to settle in a distant island to grab Iron or to buy Iron from an AI for several resources and 50+ :gold: per turn.
Unlike another American leader Lincoln who is Phi, Washington's traits don't give direct research boost, but they bring significant advantages under isolation: +2 extra happy faces per city are precious, especially when there is no early happy resource; cheap granaries and cheap workers all help growing cities and improving tiles. CHA naval units will receive 2 promotions with drydocks, very nice for overseas warfare. American UUs are irrelevant in Pangaea or Lakes maps; however, in isolation when the game becomes long, having some Navy Seal might be useful.

Thanks for the map :)
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Strange.. the leftover hammer from the worker vanish anyone know why?
The game probably considers it to be the bonus hammer from EXP. Since multiplier hammers are reset to normal in between builds... no overflow.

@konata_LS : Well played, you look in good shape.
Spoiler :
It's a little weird that no one builds MoM, so I'm trying to get some failgold :lol:
I understand the appeal of getting MOAR failgold but I would recommend you chop the last two forests in Washington and complete the Mausoleum. It really is one of the best wonders in the game. It's already good if you do a single Golden Age but if you do 2 or 3 or MOAR, it adds up quickly (and it doesn't hurt that the wonder itself helps chaining those Golden Ages).

Also backfilling those cities is most important, as you point out. The earlier, the better, so they can get the infrastructure they need and grow some pop before you have a need for hammers.

Now it's time to pick a military tech and do some warring ?

This is my T73 :
Spoiler :
I went in knowing this is Isolation.
I skipped basic training for iso, so I don't know if this is very good. These are choices I made :
I went all-in on the floodplains. So, SIP and tech path : Animal Husbandry, The Wheel, Pottery (!)
And on the marble. So, tech path : Mining, Mysticism (!), Polytheism, Priesthood, Masonry (!).

The first settler was produced at size 2, working the wheat and a farmed floodplains. Then Washington produces a second worker and both cities grow their happy lives.
Turn 50 :
Spoiler :

I have 3 warriors for protection, here. A 4th would be needed to secure the whole island.
New-York doesn't have any hammers, so it didn't bother trying to complete a warrior but just grew on a Granary.

Spoiler :

From these last two pictures, we can see I'm hurting on the Worker front. Especially so since I cottaged my first farmed floodplains. Still, I managed to complete the mines sort of in time.
Philadelphia has been left unattended the whole time and, thus, produces a worker of its own.
I delayed Boston's horse to get the second mine in Washington.
Both workers in the South are a little out of position : I realize I cannot work all my tiles in the South. I will relocate one towards Philadelphia and start farming.
This is T59, I have just researched Masonry and it is starting to look a little dangerous. Judaism has only been founded recently, Stonehenge was built on T40 and TGW went in 1800BC. Late Great Wall and Judaism are rather good news.
After some counting, I'm looking at a 6 turns : Oracle + Writing.

This is my T65 Oracle (cutting it close, probably) :
Spoiler :

I'm picking Code of Laws, here. I know the tech isn't required for an Astro bulb but I value the religion and the civic.
A barb spear is ruining my day in the West. Fortunately, it doesn't target my territory. I've gotten a couple of extra warriors from Philadelphia and then Boston.
Boston has made its Monument, first, and now completes a Granary at size 2. It's possible the city could have been better managed (more use of the wheat). Then it's Workboat time.
New-York does what it does and that is stagnating at happy cap while developping cottages.

Spoiler :

I finally backfill Bronze Working (almost). So, I insert a 5th Worker in the queue.
The barb spear has been dealt with and the island is secure.

Which leads to T73 Bronze Working, revolt into Slavery :
Spoiler :

Now, I'm not too sure what I do, here, after the old Pottery-Masonry combo. (But you can notice the first improvement in Atlanta is a farm and I'm setting up to chop the granaries in Atlanta and Philadelphia.)
There are 3 more cities I want to settle.
Tech path is between Aesthetics --> Litterature or Monarchy first. I kinda want to grow, so I might very well go Monarchy, which is another unrequired tech for the Astro bulb.
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Spoiler T117 :

At T5 the layout looked very much like an island, so I decided to go straight for pottery. TW->Pot might be good in this situation even with company though, exp granary is sweet!

Held growth at 12/22 before wheat was farmed to reach pop2 with least overflow.
Second worker before settler because cottaging floodplains is a huge workerturn sink.

Finishing a mine in a hurry to get granary in 3 turns, then reaching happycap was quick. 10+ hammers into a settler at one point when workers where lagging behind on finishing cottages, when revolt-> whip asap.

Took the wine hill first, extra hammer and extra coin should be worth it when AH wasn't in.
The hill NE of the wheat is also an neat option I think, but I also wanted to gain fogbust control of the island sooner rather than later.
Chopped a ton of warriors at this point. Two forests outside of culture of new-york finished the granary about halfway toward pop2.

This nasty badass killed one of my buddies in a forested hill, and then slaughtered the one in that forest.
Then this surviving duo managed to roll the dices correctly.

Went for CoL as after monarchy+wine+cha, happines and food is spectacular, need caste to handle the surplus.
Got confu, and good autospread too!

Monarchy in, revolted to HR+Caste here.

Rushed out an academy-guy.

Seattle might have delayed optics abit, but with caste and still the missionary available I could get the fish online in 2 turns so I couldn't turn that down.
Have no scouts/explorers, and getting triremes was tricky too. I put a workshop on the westernmost silk. :D

Well played, Krikav, I think your run looks way better than what I did :goodjob:
Spoiler :
Second worker before settler because cottaging floodplains is a huge workerturn sink.
That's heads up ! I'm comparing my T73 screen to your T76. You have a couple more cottaged tiles but, more importantly, a lot more mature.
I'm sure you're way ahead on infrastructure, too, and there's no way I do 70+ bpt in 3 turns.
I like a lot the way you chopped granaries with forests outside of culture for Chicago and New-York. Rushing the important things and not connecting the horses and not settling a junker city in the middle of your island :lol:
Spoiler T137 :

How much is a Great Library + National Epic detour worth?

350 AD Astro


520 AD Astro, but nearly 1 extra great person + GLib + National Epic Built.


^ Very interesting.
Spoiler :
I'm not very well versed in Iso scenarios (I don't think I've ever played to Astro).
Krikav prioritized Optics hard rather than the Astro bulb, I think ? i.e. Optics before Aesthetics (which is a requirement for the bulb) to unlock trades. Trades come with great benefits.
I'm not sure how your line of play compares to his (you should have a stronger core although : late silk city) but :
In the two scenarios you propose, I would think the Litterature detour is very much worth it. It seems like the GLib path is down a whole tech but the staying power of GLib + Nat Epic is considerable.

To really assess the difference, I think it should be played on to Lib --> Steel (if that's the line).

I haven't played further than my first post but I was envisionning Monarchy --> Aesth as a follow up (and still do).
That said, I also estimate to be a full 5 turns behind Krikav in Empire development (maybe as many as 10). I also estimate to have missed a window circa T40 for a 3rd worker, when I went double settler. That would have helped a little but not enough to bridge the gap.
Spoiler :

Rich nice map, alot of fun options to explore!
What I prioritized was cottage maturation, most other things where tailored around that.

The reason I went CoL was to make sure I could reach the astro bulb scientists in a reasonable amount of time.

^ Very interesting.
Spoiler :
I'm not very well versed in Iso scenarios (I don't think I've ever played to Astro).
Krikav prioritized Optics hard rather than the Astro bulb, I think ? i.e. Optics before Aesthetics (which is a requirement for the bulb) to unlock trades. Trades come with great benefits.
I'm not sure how your line of play compares to his (you should have a stronger core although : late silk city) but :


Spoiler :

350 AD Astro was a hard commit to Optics and a double bulb. Play 2 was 225 AD Optics after Literature detour and 520 Astro.

Spoiler T128 - Merge :

Thought about it some more, and my city settle order wasn't abusing failgold enough, which should have been the target if I was going to hard commit to Polytheism + Priesthood and Aesthetics + Literature.

Save attached - very weird tech order. Note: Completed Oracle. Failgold was a decent fallback for not getting the Oracle.




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