Now I know why all the AI's dogpile Gandhi


Oct 19, 2022
So, the first game on either Emperor or Immortal (no tech trading, Huge Pangaea aggressive AI) that I saw Gandhi survive the AI dogpile.

I was glad for him, since I've never seen him make it past 500 AD on these settings.

But then I realized his shrine city, with a one world religion, was like a super financial trait, combined with his philo GP spam and he also captured the mids, gardens and Great Lighthouse in his retaliation against HP.

By 800 AD he was further along than any immortal AI. He had the ability to research paper, but hadn't yet (the infamous AI paper block).

I had to assess the situation quickly or this was going to be a terrible loss. I beelined liberalism and took nationalism. Captured the Masoluem next door from Monty and popped a golden age , chopped and whipe tha Taj Majal, while teching for my UU (Janassires).

On second golden age I switched caste and milked every GS and GE I could (I also built the partheneon and GL during the first golden age) to rush cannons, while using the second golden age to get Notre Dame (+2 happy), hamman (+2 happy UB) and barracks (+1 happy with nationalism), so I could triple draft jannassaries, while leaving old units home for last minute hereditary rule switch.

I then double whipped more jannaries, took monty's capitol which had (as I correctly guessed) 5 drill instructors. Sent all my workers here and spammed frams workshops and mines and chopped the heroic epic for maximum cannon spam.

All of this took about 50-60 turns of preparation. My power rating was high enough to threaten everyone else for their gold (without tech trading ai's stockpile gold for unit upgrades). I then DoW'ed Gandi.

The big problem of course (and the initial reason I went engineering, not just for the notre dame wonder), was Gandi was playing Byzantine. Meaning his cataphrtacts would roll over janassaries and cannons. He also had half the map because ******ed AI's kept DoW him, allowing him to streamroll them, bypassing his virtual inability to DoW.

Sitting behind castles full of jannasiers won't last forever to mow down his cataphracts, because he'll eventually get to strong tech....unless of course I DoW and cpature his mids immediately and switch to police state, taking police state away from him (which I did).

I then switched to SERFDOM and organized religion and decentralization and switched his civics to those, so he couldn't' whip more cataphracts, and his massive empire would crush his wallet with the high unkeep of organied religion and lack of economy.

I'm obviously all in. No more teching. My only source of income is threatening the other civs and the cities I capture.

Speaking of capturing cities, capturing or razing was a big concern here. If I raze, then Hannibal or Zara or Mansa will quickly settle and cancel open borders since they hate me for threatening them for their gold every 10 turns. All three of these AI's can easily grow as fast Gandi and outtech me during this all in phase.

The solution was to sell my mother for stone (I couldn't no longer threaten for the stone I used for Notredame) so I could whip walls and castles on every hilled city, while whipping non hill cities for a settler and longbows and resettle on the nearest hill ( Iwould put these whipped units in the nearest hill city, and wati for one of gandi's cataphracts to recapture the 1 pop city from which I owuld then repcature and raze, then resettle on the nearest hill), and send my works and spare pikemen to chop the forests for walls and castles.

Also, to get my cannons safely through on rally, I made sure every hill city was spaces apart if possible, ensuring safe passage en route.

Btw, by the time I killed Gandhi, he had ASSEMBLY LINE and Hanni and Mansa had Rifling and Communism.

Thankfully, none of the matters when there's 680 Jannassaries and 140 cannons, supported by every city popping wealth , unwilling AI donors, and gandi's loot pinata cities (I had switched back to mercantlism and caste system for merchant spam, about 40-50 turns before I killed Gandi).

By far the most intense "Emperor Game" I ever had. I have had an ideal starting location for Napoleon of the Ottomans (colossus and lots of fish and flood plains).

Now I understand why all the AI's kill this guy. Runaway Gandhi on Emperor was more difficult than 95% of the my immortal games with the same settings

Thankfully I've had experience with this situation with Mansa on immortal, where I have to draft and whip all my cities to 1 population when I get assembly line and march on him with a stack of 500+ infantry. Never though I'd have to do anything like this on Emperor, like ever.

Oh btw...I still lost...Zara had rocketry and jet fighters after I killed Hanni. Not even 500+ Jannaserries can punch through modern age units. Absolute slaughter when I DoWed Zara (he also PA'ed Hatty). I was banking on Zara/Hatty and Hannibal DoW each other )they were different religions and already DoWed each other in the past and hated each ohter) while I killed Gandi.

Sadly it didn't happen, otherwise I would have won it. I'm still confounded by Hatty's choice to not DoW Hanni for the 250+ turns I slugged it out with Gandi (and then Mansa).

Final Note: I had no choice but to do this. Mansa and Gandi would have outteched of us all, and then they would have PA'ed each other to marry in each other's divergent techs. I could never have PA'ed Gandi before Mansa did.

For now on when AI's request me to join them in the Gandi dogpile, I shall oblige, especially if he's Byzantine...that Cataphracts were biggest issue. I spent the first 30 turns of the Dow (post pyramid captured), hauled up in his Pyramid city with whipped walls and castles with at least 150 Jannasaries at the start of the war with a Stack of Cataphract Doom hitting the walls every other turn (the first wave was over 300 cataphracts and about 20-30 trebs witht he second wave of 115 cataphracts less than ten turns later, followed up by a third wave of about 80 cataphracts...then it was safe to move out with Cover+Formation promoted jannies and uber cannons).
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