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Overcoming Snowballing AI

Discussion in 'Playthroughs and Photojournals' started by CrazyG, Aug 1, 2020.

  1. stii

    stii Prince

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    Well turns out I don't have either of those wonders :)

    I don't think you can rely on any wonder unless you engineer it and even then it requires a pretty hard beeline to be safe. I mostly just take what I can get. Hanging gardens is certainly good but petra/colossus do almost exactly the same thing, internal trade routes while worse in this mod are still pretty powerful. Apostolic tradition also makes your capital huge.

    Spoiler Up to T144 :


    I'm 4 techs behind Siam but part of that is a pretty hard beeline it is more like 2 probably and I'm ahead of everyone else. Having a religion has let me catch up more quickly than normal so I might try and get some earlier wonders.
    T144 bab main.png

    T144 bab tech.png

    T144 bab religion.png

     
  2. Stalker0

    Stalker0 Baller Magnus

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    I have also cooled on Symbolism over time. Its a great belief don't get me wrong, but things like Prophecy I still really like for peacetime as well. I will say I still think its silly that it gets the pressure reduction power and the other GPP belief (which I think is completely weaker) gets the pressure boost. I would much rather have the pressure reduction, so I wish those were swapped.
     
  3. CrazyG

    CrazyG Deity

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    I decided to do the math today to see how bad the other GPP belief is. The answer is BAD.

    With symbolism, if you have tradition, a garden, and (leaning tower or artistry), that's +75%, and those 2 points are actually worth 3.5 a turn.

    For an extra 15% in golden ages to be worth 3.5 points, you need a base of 23.33 great person points.

    7 scientists (21) + school of philosophy (3) would have a base of 24. So in this situation, with permanent golden age, you earn 0.1 more scientist points, but still less of everything else.

    If you add more GPP buffs (ideologies, civ bonuses, etc.), symbolism can easily gives more of all types in any possible situation.
     
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2020
  4. stii

    stii Prince

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    I think it is probably fine for some religion abilities to be better than others, although maybe not to that degree. Only being good if you have an eternal gold age is some real win more power.
     
  5. CrazyG

    CrazyG Deity

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    Spoiler Enhanced Religion :

    Easy symbolism for enhancer belief.
    For follower, I considered Mandirs, Scholarship, Synagogues, Diligence, and Cathedrals. I picked synagogues which so far feels like a bad choice.

    I hadn't ever tried rushing Sankore like this before and it's really hurts infrastructure. Delaying watermills and forges for so long hurts a lot.


    Spoiler Sankore? :

    Got it. Phew. Turn 120 was my target for this wonder, I got iron working then immediately chopped 4 forests to get it. Since I have open sky there's no reason to leave forests unchopped. I'm going for currency next for villages.
    20200806214527_1.jpg


    Spoiler Reformation :

    Now that I reach the target population I stop buying missionaries to get a synagogue everywhere. What belief to take?
    Picture (9).jpg


    Spoiler Medieval Tech Path :

    Rushing machinery for the wonder. I also get buffs to academies and manufactories on the way. Notre Dame was built in a single turn with engineer plus investment. My target turn was 140.
    Picture (10).jpg
    Then I get compass to scout the world, then theology for the grand temple, this should give me chemistry in time to get Leaning Tower.


    Spoiler Turn 144 :

    I'll share this turn since Stii did.
    Picture (11).jpg

    Picture (12).jpg
    I'm going for Leaning Tower not Banking. I'd be curious what made him target that tech as I rarely enter Renaissance that way. Statecraft as well is an interesting strategy.

    We are very close in culture and science. His cities have much larger populations, probably better infrastructure too. I still don't have a single market. Getting the wonders I did hurt my development substantially.

    In his game Siam is top dog (for now), but not in mine. Sadly Siam isn't even in Renaissance yet, which means that it's probably Morocco who is snowballing.
     
  6. stii

    stii Prince

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    I guess I just don't value wonders that highly. They are nice to have if you can get them but I want more buildings. banks provide a pretty big science boost for something you are doing already. When we are in no danger I really want to just go right for the top of the tech tree to get more science. Leaning tower is good but it is very much in the wrong direction. find the other players and CS more quickly is worth quite a bit too.

    I think both Fealty and Artistry is fine but not exciting so I wanted to try statecraft here. I have a lot of CS allies so if it is ever good it will be good here. Might be able to get a quick world religion.

    It is somewhat surprising different the AIs are. Even one we've had zero interaction with.
     
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  7. CrazyG

    CrazyG Deity

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    In your situation I would have pursued printing press, not banking, to be the first world congress host. You've already met everyone.

    My idea is that building a few wonders would slow down the AI snowball by denying them. So far it doesn't appear to have made a difference.
     
  8. CrazyG

    CrazyG Deity

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    Spoiler World Congress :

    Turn 150 Morocco founds world congress. I make a proposal that slightly helps me and gives me positive diplo relations with all other civs.
    Update (5).jpg
    This is weird because many of them vote against it later. Not too big of a deal (that proposal would help Morocco a lot), just odd. Treasure Fleet did pass but I didn't put any hammers into it.

    It's good that I have enough votes to propose, because I really want World's fair passed later on.


    Spoiler Leaning Tower :

    My target for this wonder was 160, which I hit exactly. For both this wonder and the free artistry policy, I took an engineer for manufactories. That means I have +60% on my future engineers.
    Update (10).jpg


    Spoiler 5th City :

    You might have noticed Akkad was building a settler. I upgrade it to a pioneer after banking, then plant a city. This city immediately has most of what Nippur has, in hindsight maybe I should have used a pioneer there too.

    My non-capital cities are generally speaking total crap. 4 and 5 barely earn enough science to break even, and they probably cost me more culture than they pull. But later on I want them for production.

    Update (11).jpg You can see that the Netherlands dropped a great diplomat on Lhasa. I've been steadily losing my CS allies and I don't have production to spare.


    Spoiler Turn 173 :

    I finish artistry on this turn. 12 policies is enough to go for porcelain tower, Morocco still doesn't have the tech (all other AI are basically irrelevant compared to him). My target for this milestone was turn 180, I'm ahead of schedule.
    Update (13).jpg
    Investment + great engineer gets this wonder in one turn. Porcelain Tower is a key wonder to help ensure I stay ahead of Morocco in science. I can afford to be slightly behind in culture, but if I lack a science lead I have nothing.


    Spoiler My Enemy :

    Morocco leads the world in pretty much everything. He builds every single Renaissance wonder that I do not (not including Red Fort).
    He got almost every medieval wonder I did not, except Alhambra and Forbidden City (which will remain unbuilt, no one took progress this game). Siam did get Hagia Sophia, so that's nice I guess?

    As of this turn, we are even in social policies, but he will reach 13 before I do. He is currently 3 techs ahead, but I suspect that won't last.
    Update (14).jpg
    I've denied him two of the strongest Renaissance wonders. I'm able to steal techs currently, and I've proposed sanctioning him.
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2020
  9. LifeOfBrian

    LifeOfBrian Warlord

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    I don't have images at the moment, so a text report thus far of my attempt, currently at turn 271.
    <SPOILER>
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2020
  10. CrazyG

    CrazyG Deity

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    Could you put your post in a spoiler? I haven't played past the Renaissance, and I don't want to read what happens in the future. Thanks.
     
  11. LifeOfBrian

    LifeOfBrian Warlord

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    Oh, damn, sorry! :(
     
  12. LifeOfBrian

    LifeOfBrian Warlord

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    How do I do that?
     
  13. tothePAIN

    tothePAIN Prince

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    If you find the button on the text bar when you try to draft a reply that says Insert (to the immediate left of the camera), you can insert a spoiler.
     
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  14. LifeOfBrian

    LifeOfBrian Warlord

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    Thanks, tothePAIN!

    Spoiler My game :


    I went Progress (my favourite ancient policy tree), settled Akkad two tiles east of Uluru, then I settled my 3rd city northwest of Brussels (one tile northwest of the closest hill to Brussels), then I settled my 4th city where Marseille is in CrazyG's game, then my 5th city where CrazyG will/has settled his pioneer. My final/6th city was by the river in the south. My pantheon was God of the Sun, I founded 4th (helped by Lhasa's faith), picked Way of Transcendence and Churches, then I tried to delay the medieval era until I got my spreading done. Siam, China and Morocco founded before me, France founded the last religion. I took Mendicancy and Mandirs for my enhancing and then to the Glory of God for my reformation, having spread to Persia (3 cities) and the Netherlands (5 cities) and all city states on the continent. I currently produce around 250 faith per turn. After Progress, I went Artistry and Rationalism.

    Turn 271, Siam leads the way with a score of 1952, followed by China (1850), Morocco and the Netherlands. Siam has 8 cities, 57 techs, 12 wonders and is getting a bit hostile towards me (understandable as I've tried proposing sanctioning them twice, both time the vote failed by just a few votes), China has 7 cities, 9 wonders and 57 techs, Morocco has 4 cities, 14 wonders and 53 techs. I'm friends with Morocco (currently sanctioned by the WC), France and the Netherlands, and have a sphere of influence on Vilnius, and I've been the host after the first host vote. On turn 271 I have just won the World fair (I timed entering the Modern era with the building of the World fair to get the bonus hammers from Way of Transcendence) and will now use my accumulated faith and culture process and 18 turns of golden age (I used a GA to rush a golden age) to crank out as many great writers for as much culture I can. I've also deliberately avoided building heroic epic until now and creating any great writers, so my cities all have a few GW points fewer than needed for the first Great writer, so hopefully I'll be able to pop around 4-5 great writers for lots of culture, and hopefully one of my three hidden artifacts will be a culture bomb as well and not just duds. I will select an ideology the next turn, I'll go for Order (already picked by Morocco and Siam, both have 3 tenets already), China and the Netherlands took Freedom, Motherland calls has already been built. Unfortunately I won't be able to build a corporation because both Twokay foods (my wine monopoly) and Trader Sid's (my sugar monopoly via East India's Company) have already been built very soon by China and the Netherlands. I've planted around 5 academies and I have built the Forbidden palace (easy because no other civ took progress), Louvre (used a faith-bought GE on it) and Leaning tower of Pisa (used the Artistry's free GP on it). All of my cities except one have everything built except arsenals and hotels and I'm currently in the process of upgrading my army to a more modern one, but given my DoFs and the defensive placement of my cities I'm quite prepared for a surprise DoW. I've been selling almost all of my horses and iron for money to China and Morocco who have been willing to pay the most for a copy (around the 390-450 range), but that will slowly stop now as I have to start saving them for Agribusiness. I could have squeezed two more cities in my continent, one east of Babylon and one southwest, but decided against it because it would cost too much science and culture. I wanted to play the game without "stealing" from any major civs or warring, so I've only used my spies for diplomats and have used my GGs to get tiles from city states, and haven't denounced anyone even after multiple spies caught/noticed. I'm optimistic about the late game.

    Later development:
    Won a SV on t249, nothing special happened, I used Hubble and CERN and all the GS to surge ahead in science, at the time of my victory only Siam built a single SS component. Lots of denouncements as I neared the victory, but my army was strong enough to deter any DoWs.
     
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  15. stii

    stii Prince

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    Played up to T173, it is pretty funny how close together our games are in some ways and so far apart in others.
     
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  16. CrazyG

    CrazyG Deity

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    Finished the game today. Will post photos soon.
     
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  17. CrazyG

    CrazyG Deity

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    Do you mean turn 349? I see you mentioned events on turn 279 earlier in the post.
     
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2020
  18. CrazyG

    CrazyG Deity

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    Spoiler Porcelain Tower :

    Investment + Great Engineer gets it this turn.

    China declared war on me, bribed by Morocco after I proposed sanctioning him. I think this is the only war in the history of the world so far.
    Number (62).jpg
    I realized I didn't explain my build orders much, so I'll put it here. Culture first, above all else. Then either science or production. My goal is to get Hubble built before turn 300 which requires crazy culture output (roughly a new policy every 10 turns).


    Spoiler Industrial Era :

    I enter industrial era by stealing scientific theory from Morocco. By watching his capital I can figure out what techs he has, and I make those tech thefts part of my plan.Next step is an agribusiness in my capital. I plan to get factories from order so I won't be building any.

    I also got a great general after shooting a few Chinese ships, so I used him to steal 3 tiles from this city state. I'm steadily losing all my allies, but I can keep friend status with most city states.
    Number (64).jpg
    Sanctions on Morocco passed! I proposed yields to the natural wonder.


    Spoiler Slater Mill :

    This wonder was really important because I have 0 coal in my empire. I'm still focusing really heavily on culture and science, my cities have weak growth and development.
    Number (65).jpg
    Morocco failed to repeal sanctions on himself. Nothing passed at this congress. I also have a strategic monopoly on iron apparently.


    Spoiler Louvre :

    Easy wonder to get because Morocco couldn't build it. I stole the tech from him, and I can faith purchase archeologists.

    He is really unpopular with everyone so I denounce him, and I get elected leader of world congress. World's fair is super important to my strategy, so I use my next great scientist as a bulb. That brings me to the required tech by the next proposal, and I'm guaranteed to propose since I'm host!
    Number (66).jpg


    Spoiler World's Fair and Eiffel Tower :

    Eiffel Tower was easy to get via investment and my strong capital. I now have a tech lead and change spies to steal great works. Over the course of the game I think I steal at least 30.
    Number (72).jpg
    World's fair passes. Three cities have a great writer waiting to be born during the culture explosion. Most of my cities finish building something this turn, so they can use overflow on World's Fair. I need to reach 1,250 production within 2 turns.


    Spoiler Ideology :

    Turn 238, I'm second, with Morocco being first. He took freedom, I'm taking order. All cities are pushing culture. I saved a great artist to start a golden age right here too, and I have three Great Writers born in close succession.
    Number (75).jpg

    I also reached the Atomic Era, using the free tech from Rationalism. Moving towards a research lab for my capital, other cities will wait to get the free one available within order. I'm now even with Morocco. China and Siam are doing well, taking a tech lead over Morocco. China takes Freedom, Siam takes Autocracy.

    Netherlands takes order like 30 turns later (we are friends). The three remaining AI are truly pathetic, like 15 techs and 8 social policies behind the rest of the world. Turns out authority is pretty bad if you never declare war.
     
  19. CrazyG

    CrazyG Deity

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    Spoiler Information Era :

    At this point the game moves fast. I'm using my great scientists, who earn more than a tech each. I picked up free military academies, factories, and research labs in all my cities. Order good.

    All cities are still really heavily focused on culture though (working all culture specialists and the culture process, even if it means starving a bit). I need to hit 23 policies to build Sydney Opera House (which must be in a coastal city, so not my capital). It will give me my 24th, for Hubble. I don't think Cern or The International Space Station will be completed in time.
    Number (4).jpg
    I only build a wind mill in my capital. I save my aluminum and got one recycling plant. The past three congresses I've tried to get a sphere on influence on a CS with aluninum and failed.


    Spoiler War :

    This war was also a bribe (china paid France). It's a massive inconvenience because of those CS allies, but won't slow me down too much. At this point the AI all hate me, I had good relations for most of the game.
    Number (8).jpg
    It's not a tough war, especially because I'll have a nuclear bomb soon.


    Spoiler Great Leap Forward :

    A scientist was born and a scientist was bought, plus Great Leap Forward to get 4 techs in a single turn. I've unlocked Hubble, but must wait for Nippur to finish the Sydney Opera House first.
    Number (9).jpg
    It also means that if a military CS gives me a unit, it will be a Giant Death Robot. My army has crap promotions because they are all gold purchased (my production is truly awful outside the capital, but the capital needs to keep building things like Manhattan and Apollo Project. I skipped Bletchley Park.


    At this point things look pretty good. UN was proposed but rejected and no civ is close to a cultural victory. Anyone want to place a guess what turn the spaceship can go up by?
     
  20. LifeOfBrian

    LifeOfBrian Warlord

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    Yes, sorry, I meant turn 349.
     
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