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Optimal goverment type

Discussion in 'Civ3 - Strategy & Tips' started by Wojciech_R, Jan 12, 2016.

  1. Wojciech_R

    Wojciech_R Chieftain

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    Hi,

    I played this game like 12 years ago - and sucked even on lowest level:/

    I was young, in love, trying too hard to follow the same strategies as in CIV 1 and CIV2, etc etc (don't lynch me, please:))
    Anyhow that always bugged me:

    What would be the optimal goverment type for large empire at peace? I remember that game had terrible waste\corruption penalties. Much bigger than in CIV 1 and CIV2 (there was no waste in CIV 1).

    Can someone please help me to solve this mystery from my past?
     
  2. justanick

    justanick Chieftain

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    Usually republic is considered to be the best government. It is available early, it has the commerce bonus that enables you to research really fast and unless you have huge armies(say 8 or more units per city) it has lower unit costs then democracy. So for small to mid sized empires(say 40 cities at a standard size map) there is no way to research faster than a republic at peace. Many players are able to properly manage a republic even during war, but at the higher difficulty levels like Sid that becomes increasingly difficult.

    Most players go into the republic ASAP and either keep it for the rest of the game or they choose communism for their later large empires. Communism is by far the best government for large empires because corruption is rather low. Due to that low corruption your regular production might be up to double of that of a republic. As for research communism might be on par with a republic, but that happens only when your communist empire is highly developed and that takes time. The cost of anarchy are really high and unless war seriosly hurts your republic communism cannot close the research gap created by a second anarchy in favour of communism. So chances are that your "optimal goverment type for large empire at peace" is the republic although communism is in fact better, be it slightly or lot, that will depend on circumstances.

    By priority there are 4 important rules for goverment:

    1. Avoid anarchy at almost all cost.
    2. Leave despotism as soon as possible.
    3. Republic is the best government before communism, but monarchy is much less vulnerable to war.
    4. Once communism is available it can reduce the corruption to about 25%(that may require a proper build up of anti corruption buildings which will take time) in all cities, thus it is the best government for large empires.
     
  3. Wojciech_R

    Wojciech_R Chieftain

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    What about democracy?
     
  4. justanick

    justanick Chieftain

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    Democracy is very good government in the ancent age, but it is not available until the late middle age. Then it still has some nice advantages, but the costs of anarchy are way to high. Once you have railroads and police stations there hardly is a difference between democracy and republic. Democracy is superior with more than 8 units per metropolises, republic is superior with less than 8 units per metropolises. Also democracy is very vulnerable to war, possibly forcing you into another very expensive anarchy period of 7 turns on average.
     
  5. Wojciech_R

    Wojciech_R Chieftain

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    Thank you very much
    I am really tempted to put your advice into test:)
     
  6. Jivilov

    Jivilov Chieftain

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    It may provide some amusement to certain players that courthouses and police stations are considered anti-corruption buildings in Conquests ;). (Sorry for the lateral off-topic but just couldn't resist. Cheers.)
     
  7. tomart109

    tomart109 Perspicacious

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    I keep noticing that no one likes Feudalism (or Monarchy, for that matter.) I like it, and use it a lot. It's available early enough, supports more military than Republic (to which I attribute lots of victories; the ai realizes it needs a more warlike govt, and goes into anarchy DURING the war!) It encourages small towns when I have small towns. Of course, in the longer term, Commie is the way to go, but early-mid-game I'm Feudal.
     
  8. Theov

    Theov Chieftain

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    I have made a guide to governments (link is in my signature).
    But Justanick explained it pretty well. Make sure you have some luxuries or happiness going in your cities when you switch to Republic.
    The easiest way to go is research (alphabet if it's not a starting tech) -> writing -> code of laws -> Philosophy and then take Republic as your free tech.

    By that time you should have 6 cities, some luxuries or at least some workers going to get income.
     
  9. Quintillus

    Quintillus It's Mueller Time Supporter

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    justanick justly summarizes the main line of argument. Generally though, due to the anarchy factor, the order most players have agreed on over the years is:

    1. Republic
    2. Monarchy
    3. Everything else

    Spoiler Analysis of when each government makes sense :
    Republic generally is seen as the best (any production bonus from Communism does indeed come too late to counteract it), and if you're playing very warlike where shields due to no war weariness + military police are more important than research, Monarchy can be the best; again, Communism would come too late to be worth the switch. If you're playing warlike enough for Monarchy to really be worth it over Republic, you'll probably have conquered a good chunk of the planet by the time Communism comes around as-is... especially because you'll probably prioritize Replaceable Parts for Infantry + Artillery, and maybe even go for Tanks and Bombers, before going for Communism. Some players may argue that Republic is always better than Monarchy, but my take is that depends on playstyle and difficulty level. The lack of war weariness is certainly a point in Monarchy's favor from the annoyance factor, and it's not an unusual government in warlike games.

    Communism suffers greatly from the fact that while it balances out corruption, most large empires aren't equally developed when the switch into Communism. So while the weak outer cities become more productive, they still aren't well-developed and are still fairly poor; meanwhile the rich inner cities all of a sudden have far more corruption than they did, and if you aren't prepared ahead of time (buying at least courthouses with gold as Republic/Monarchy in outer cities, ideally police stations, factories, market, etc. to boost shields and commerce), the decrease from inner cities can be worse than the benefit from outer cities, resulting in an actual decrease in GDP and production upon switching. I ran into this in my PTW Russia --> USSR game; my science rank tanked from 60% to 20% as maintenance stayed the same but income plummeted. I wish I still had that save; it was one of my most interesting Civ3 games because of that element (and the Brits almost winning a space race).

    Feudalism is very niche IMO. Due to the 2nd Rule of Governments, it's almost always a good idea to have switched to either Monarchy or Republic first, which would mean two periods of anarchy, violating the 1st Rule of Governments. So this leaves two situations:

    1. Got to Middle Ages without researching Republic or Monarchy. Generally considered a bad idea. The 3-food/shield/commerce penalty of Despotism is very severe, so sticking with it until the Middle Ages is almost never a good idea; if so you've violated the 2nd Rule of Governments.
    2. Are in Monarchy and Republic and switched. Switching to Feudalism at this point violates the 1st Rule of Governments. And if you're in Monarchy, you're probably being warlike, in which case the war weariness of Feudalism makes it a bad idea. If you're peaceful, however, the commerce bonus of Republic almost certainly outweights the unit support of Feudalism.

    That said, there are rare cases where it can make sense. If you're being crushed by unit support in Republic, and need those units for military police/wars, it can be worth switching. Generally if you have that many units and are at war, Monarchy is worth considering instead due to the lack of war exhaustion, but if you really have gobs of units, Feudalism does have more support (although you should probably send those units to the front!), and if the war is temporary, the war exhaustion can be acceptable (but be sure you really can't afford them, and need them, before switching). In other words, the niche cases tend to be ones where economics dictates Feudalism, and there simply isn't an alternative to keeping all those units.

    I used Feudalism in a game in 2010, and from what I can tell/recall, it was only because for some reason I didn't wind up researching Monarchy/Republic. I didn't have enough units to justify it (although I had plenty of cities to generate support), and bogged down in tech in the 2nd half of the Middle Ages. Eventually I switched to Republic (in the late Middle Ages) for the commerce.

    So what's that leave? Democracy, for one, which as mentioned almost never provides enough benefits to be worth it. It's arguably better in Vanilla than Conquests; in Conquests Republic has double unit support costs, but has enough free units that by the time Democracy is available, a Republic usually has less than 1 gold per unit in actual military support costs, or will soon once Sanitation hits, and thus Democracy is more expensive. In Vanilla, both Republic and Democracy have no free units, but also don't have double support costs. So while Democracy is equally good in Vanilla, Republic is typically better in Conquests late-game than Vanilla late-game, since its unit support will generally be higher in Vanilla. Even so, it's hardly ever worth switching to Democracy in Vanilla.

    Last and least is Fascism. It gives higher unit support than Communism, but Communism already has plenty generous unit support; you'd almost have to try to max out Communism's unit support. And its penalties - minus one pop per city upon switching, and no culture growth until you have majority culture in a captured city - are very high. Supposing you were switching in the Industrial Era due to too high of war exhaustion in Republic/Democracy/Feudalism, it's a tough case to make all around. Communism has lower corruption in the long haul, and no penalties, although in the short haul Fascism's corruption model may be better. But if communal corruption doesn't work for you, then why not go Monarchy and avoid the Fascism penalties? By late game, Monarchy's unit support is usually enough anyway.

    And I suppose Despotism deserves a mention. In rare cases, the 4/4/4 unit support can make it worth staying in Despotism until you've planted a couple more cities to help bump up what Monarchy/Republic would support. It's rare, and when in doubt switch, but I have had cases where despite getting rid of the Despotism penalty, I've tanked my economy due to too high of unit support. Typically this is when I have a larger army than I usually do early - such as when I'm launching an early warrior/archer war on a neighbor that's kind of far away, and have a bunch of units marching over there. However, once either a few more cities are planted, or the enemy's cities are taken, Monarchy or Republic will be better, so staying in Despotism is only ever the best in the short term, not the long term. The other case, of course, is where you're a couple turns away from finishing a wonder that someone else might finish first if you switch to Anarchy - but in that case make sure to switch as soon as it's finished. Yes, I have been that player who stayed in Despotism to finish a wonder, and then forgot about switching governments after the wonder was completed :blush:.

    As for Anarchy... you'd have to have an extremely unusual setup for it to make sense. It's one saving grace is there's no unit support or building maintenance. So, it could make sense in a case where you build up a stockpile of gold, then built up a humongous army that cost way more per turn than you could afford, using the stockpile to keep you afloat, and then started a war with the huge army but couldn't afford its upkeep. In that case, Anarchy would allow you to keep the army in the field, although without/mostly without reinforcements. It is still possible to produce things in Anarchy (Civil Engineers/Citizens/Scientists/Tax Collectors), but it's painful and very inefficient. I can't think of a case where practically it would make sense to build up such a huge army that Anarchy would be the only way to support it before starting a war, but theoretically it could make sense if you could find a scenario justifying that big of an upfront buildup. One of the biggest buildups I've done was 50 galleys + 100 Medieval Infantry/Pikemen, and even then Monarchy made more sense. But it's fun to think of a scenario where Anarchy might be the best option, even if only for a short time.
     
  10. justanick

    justanick Chieftain

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    PTW used a very different corruption model than C3C 1.22. Thus i need to dismiss that example if this discusson should be limited to C3C 1.22.

    In C3C 1.22 the corruption increment for core cities is small, usually it is dominated by distance corruption and distance corruption can easily be halved by courthouse and police station and for production also by WLTKD. In communism there is no real distance, distance corruption simply starts at 25% and is reduced to 12.5% by courthouse and to 6.25% by both anti corruption building together. This means that courthouses are very essential for communism, while police stations are really just nice to have. Courthouses and aqueducts are those building that can to be worth to be rushed, in other cases regular production is likely the better balanced approach.

    Communism allows you to extent the average corruption of your inner ~20 cities to your entire empire, that would then have about 20%. For very large empires it is higher than 20%, but the relative advantage of communism will very likely be even larger then. For mid sized empires switching to communism is a bit of a no brainer unless you lose the commerce bonus from republic or democracy. That really is the one case where one needs to weigth that lost commerence bonus against the lower corruption and often this means that the potentially higher total net commerce of communism cannot outweight the anarchy period.
     
  11. agonistes

    agonistes wants his subs under ice!

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    I only leave Monarchy for roleplaying purposes (communism for Russia, fascism for Germany). I love Monarchy. Free smiley faces, and I always leave 2 units in each city anyways.
     
  12. Quintillus

    Quintillus It's Mueller Time Supporter

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    Good point, I'd forgotten about the changed corruption model in Conquests. This sounds like a good reason to have a Soviet Russia Conquests game in my future!
     
  13. Theov

    Theov Chieftain

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    you wouldn't if you were in republic.
    You'd protect the borders. Stationing units deeper within your cultural borders fulfills no purpose
     
  14. agonistes

    agonistes wants his subs under ice!

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    Tsk tsk, Theov. You know better than that. Presuming to tell me what I would do if, for some reason, I stayed in Republic?

    I would still have units in my cities. And I have my reasons for doing so, too. I may be crazy, but not mindless.
    :crazyeye:
     

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