Nobles' Club 337: Hammurabi of Babylon


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 Hammurabi of Babylon, whom we last played in NC 301. The Babylonians start with Agriculture and The Wheel.
  • Traits: Hammurabi is Aggressive and Organized. Aggressive gives all Melee and Gunpowder units a free Combat I promotion, and gives a +100% :hammers: bonus to Barracks and Drydocks. Organized cuts Civic Upkeep in half, and gives a +100% :hammers: bonus to Lighthouses, Courthouses and Factories.
  • The UB: The Garden, a Colosseum with +2 :health: . Consider it an Aqueduct that costs 20% less :hammers: while providing +1:), which can be stacked with an actual Aqueduct when the Industrial Era rolls around and Coal Plants generate inordinate amounts of :yuck:.
  • The UU: The Bowman, an Archer with +50% vs. Melee units. Melee units make up most of your opponents during the era in which Bowman are relevant, so especially with an AGG Barracks to back them up these guys will keep you well safe against barbarians. Both the regular kind and the uppity neighbour kind ;).
And the start:

Spoiler map details :
Pangaea, Tropical climate, Medium sealevel.
Spoiler edits :
A strategic resource swap to give an AI a nearby strategic resource.
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 337 Hammurabi 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.


  • NC 337
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Two plains hills, but personally I don't feel like flinging my settler into the darkness away from the best food tile that's visible, especially when said best food tile is a 4:food: grass cow. Boring as it is I'd probably just SIP, since I can't really see a particularly better location to settle. Could settle on one of the wines to auto-connect it when Monarch rolls around, but it doesn't give any benefit before that point like a 2:hammers: city tile or something, and vineyards aren't the worst tiles to work.

What do the experts think, and how disappointed are they that I missed something seemingly obvious :rolleyes:?
Spoiler :


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^ Those are the worst. Make me consider playing with barbs off sometimes.

Hammered! :D
Deity T43

Spoiler :

Tech: AH -> Mining (PH mine for 13 food-hammers at size 3) -> Pottery -> BW

The weird road is because I was planning to settle corn first but had to pull back to wheat spot due to barbs patrolling.

Really not sure about my city placement plan on this map. The NW coast hill seems like a clear location to grab that fish, and putting corn city straight north of cap allows for one city in between them to grab all those river tiles, but it doesn't have any food resource... Even if no more spots get stolen by AI, best case looks like 6 good cities in this peninsula (6th one in the riverlands to the SE) unless I'm missing something?

Also I see that Isabella archer parked just south of the NW cow, does that mean she is planning to settle there? If so should I go there first even if it's a slower city to get going?


Played for some turns, won't finish. Want to discuss map with spectators.
Spoiler :

Is the correct way play this map, keep taking military techs and fight continuously until the end? Whip courthouses everywhere and steal all the techs?

There is one ocean fish and no calendar resources. I skipped fishing, ran two libraries, and bulbed engineering. I was exhausted after crippling one player.

Too grindy.

Spoiler :

Engi does seem like a good plan with a good commerce base but few cities. How many did you settle?

Can't comment on the espionage strategy since I don't do much of it myself.

I agree that the fighting part can take the most play time and it's a bit repetitive (siege warfare especially works in a slow and steady way), until you get to a critical size where you can get a diplo victory with the % of population between you, vassals and friends, or have enough land to win space (which is its own different kind of grind).

I don't think it's unusual for people here to stop the game when they have a successful breakout because then it's pretty clear it's a win eventually. On deity I sometimes have problems recovering after a first war, when I don't have that much land yet, so I like practicing this part. It's not too hard with engineering though because you have a short tech path to cannons as mentioned in Henrik's guide posted earlier on this forum.
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Played the immortal version up to 1370 AD, but don't think I'll continue.
Spoiler :
I have been fighting constr/eng wars for almost 1000 years now but only added 5 cities to the 6 I settled. Although only the Khmer are larger, I am getting behind in tech, my cities are suffering from whip anger, and my front line is a logistic nightmare after I lost a city to an AP resolution I didnt dare to defy.

Not really sure what the correct approach would have been. I thought taking the same religion as Isabelle was the right choice, and hoped she could keep the Khmer busy while I would take the Sumerians. It seemed to work fine initially, but the Sumerians simply used their AP to either stop my wars or take back the conquered cities, along with getting help from their far away Jewish friends, who sent small but distracting mini-stacks. Some cities have flipped sides 4 or 5 times by now, so this is taking way too long.

I did consider joining Isabelle in the war against the Khmer first, but then I could only conquer some far away awkward Khmer cities bordering Spain, which I feared would increase tensions with Spain. I also considered swiching to the Jewish block and attack Isabelle first, but that would mean I would have to fight the Khmer on my own next.

Maybe I should just stick to cuirassier rushes, so I can go straight for the AP city and raze it...
@Donald Duck1
Spoiler :

Your diplomacy was a mistake. Isabella has her own religion so nobody likes her. Then she settles in our face. Take them out. Then go and fight the Khmer on your own. Sumeria has hereditiary rule as favourite civic, easily get them to friendly.

I am not sure about curaissers. The challenge is to produce enough great scientists and great merchants to make it work. We're not swimming in food resources. But I am biased - - I have never been a curaisser fan.
Had the time to play a bit forward, slowly, T80 now

Spoiler :

First I was wrong to expect barb defense to be easy on this peninsula, because north was a thick unsettled band of jungle. Had to reload once, and then was fairly cautious, sometimes using whips for warriors (no copper, and horse were no help vs. barb spearmen). Stabilized and eventually got to Writing fairly late (T70).

Found a spot NW with gold and ivory, should help with happiness and elephants might prove useful for the likely siege warfare (still aiming for Engineering but we'll see). Aesthetics after Writing, no one has it yet and I'm hoping to trade for Alpha and Monarchy. Still have two helper / cottage cities to set up (next settler in 2) and thus end up with 7 cities.


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