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Post a (tough) Deity map for me to play

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Strategy & Tips' started by Lain, Jul 19, 2017.

  1. Bibor

    Bibor Doomsday Machine

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    Flanking I works against non-archers, but Flanking II is what you want, as Kirkav said, it provides immunity to first strikes.
    I use flanking as "mounted siege", if a flanking unit survives the attack, even the "retreat" does (some) damage. First strikes obviously negate this damage, that's why Flanking II is so good.
    I usually do the following promotion method: I lead the units unpromoted until I reach the city. Once there, I promote units to flanking as long as there's undamaged defenders. Once units have been damaged, Combat I becomes more interesting, at least for 1 unit that will receive Medic I.
    With stables, I do the same, except I go for Flaking II and when defenders are softened I go Combat I + Shock if there's spears/pikes, or Combat II if archers are defending.
     
  2. sampsa

    sampsa Ghost

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    I am confused. Here we face archers, so flanking-route needs to somehow beat not getting combat I. That flanking II better be really really good, since the initial attack is weakened (by not having combat I)
    I am more confused. How do first strikes obviously negate damage done by retreating? I don't understand how these are connected.
     
  3. Fippy

    Fippy Mycro Junkie Queen

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    Honestly it's an old topic,
    flanking has been shown to be weaker than combat several times ;)
    Situation can only get worse if you fail taking a city, some low health chariots that survived will not dry your tears.
     
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  4. Fish Man

    Fish Man Emperor

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    In defense of flanking (after defending fish):

    The way the random seed works is, on a particular turn, no matter what promos your unit have the general "course" of every battle is already decided. That means that if you have 2, 5, 10% odds with a chariot and lose that fight and the archer survives at 2.0/3, having combat 1 will not change the result at all most of the time. Or, only change it so that the archer survives at 1.9/3 instead. Only with a very large improvement in odds will you see a significant difference in combat outcome (so...using an HA instead, or attacking another unit, say an archer in the open and not in a city).

    That being said, since an extra combat promo doesn't matter that much, flanking and the (admittedly marginally) greater survival odds might be more of an incentive. Especially since, if your unit survives and you take the city, you can move into it at that same turn and begin healing. Only drawback is withdrawals give 1XP max, but better 1XP than 0, a promoted defender, and a dead unit.

    Idk, maybe combat is still better because of something I haven't accounted for or since I haven't done the math. But just some food for thought.

    Also...gotta try this map soon. But I have already a long list of maps I've yet to play...
     
  5. Bibor

    Bibor Doomsday Machine

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    That's... not entirely true.

    Most mounted units (except Chariots and Cavalry) are immune to first strikes. For these units, Combat is almost always superior to Flanking, with the possible exception of Protective defenders that stack first strikes.
    The only exception to this is if you're attacking into an enemy stack to crush its siege. In that case, Flanking II superior, because if the unit retreats, it still does flanking damage (unlike a regular death where the unit just... dies).

    For chariots and cavalry it's a bit different, because first strikes hurt like hell. For these units, presuming you have 2 attackers for each defender, it's actually superior to bring 1 Flanking unit per defender (to soften up the defenses), except if the strength difference is so high in favor of the defender, that you're deliberately suiciding Combat I/II units to soften up the defenders more than a flanking attack would.

    The Drill promotion line is also often overlooked. In case of attackers like Samurai, the math is pretty simple - they simply lose way less HP than regular attackers so you need to bring fewer of them and they heal up faster. For ships it's even better.
     
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2018
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  6. Fippy

    Fippy Mycro Junkie Queen

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    Well if Rusten used flanking, he will have had good reasons (and it's not like i have much interest in warming this one up lol, one of those heated topics back then..).

    For any other mounted than chariots it's very clear,
    flanking out siege never really happens with inferior mounted units, or something went very wrong in those games.
    They can also use shock, pinch for 25% against the best defender with 2 promos, so advanced mounted units always have good chances at winning battles on open field.

    Similar would be true for Cavs, flanking on them i would see as luxury promo.
    Means you are fighting against Rifles or Infs, give up pinch,
    and are worried about having enuf to capture cities with such strong defenders.
    Injured flanking units will not help defending, if you are an unit or 2 short after giving up too much damage potential all others died for nothing,
    and overall if i try avoiding losses with Cavs i should instead have added siege or stop that war, cos they are not an unit for careful play.
     
  7. sampsa

    sampsa Ghost

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    OK, but it doesn't change anything that the "die has already been cast", assuming that the percentages the game gives are correct. Of course combat 1 doesn't change the result most of the time, since it just makes a 4 strength unit a 4.4 strength unit and you are fighting against fortified archers in a city. The question is if that 4.4 vs 4 is a bigger impact than a 10% withdrawal chance.

    Good points, but we are discussing whether to promote chariots to flanking or to combat while attacking deity AI. Chariots don't inflict flanking damage, and even deity AI shouldn't have catapults this early.
    A flanking I chariot softens the defenses less than a combat I chariot on average, because it's strength is lower. However, 10% of the time when an unpromoted chariot would die, a flanking1-chariot ends up not dying, but being one round of combat away from dying. So a combat I chariot has a higher chance of winning, inflicts more damage, but ends up dead more often. If the aim is to wound the top defender, combat I is clearly superior. If the aim is to reduce the chance of dying, flanking is superior. I have hard time coming up with situations where latter would be a more desirable outcome, that's why I initially raised the question.
     
  8. Fish Man

    Fish Man Emperor

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    I actually only see a single combat promo making a difference about 25% of the time when the odds are this stacked against you (strength ratio of 4 vs 6 or worse).

    So let's say C1 helps do an extra 0.1 damage 1/4 of the time. That's basically an average of an extra 0.025 damage per promotion. Now ask yourself, why would you take a promo that literally does less than 1% of the damage required to kill a defending unit (archer) over 10% greater survival odds? The scenario of a bunch of low-HP chariots being left after failing to take a city sucks, but at least that's better than no chariots left after failing to take a city.

    Of course my assumptions could be completely wrong. Perhaps someone should test this...
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2018
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  9. sampsa

    sampsa Ghost

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    Sounds completely wrong to me. Strength doesn't only cause you to inflict a small amount of extra damage, it more importantly helps you to win fighting rounds.
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2018
  10. krikav

    krikav Theorycrafter

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    I altered the map slightly, and added a bunch of chariots with 5xp ready to declare and attack cities (hill+flatland) in case anyone wants to experiment:
    Spoiler :

    Civ4ScreenShot0030.JPG
     

    Attached Files:

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  11. krikav

    krikav Theorycrafter

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    When we are looking at chariots, I think it's best to just compare combat1 with flank1, since we usually only have a barracks and thats just enough for one promotion.
    I changed in the hillcity, so that there was 18 chariots and 9 archers defending, waited for some turns for fortify bonus to kick in. (I think he built a archer so one is w/o fortify?)

    Promoted them 18 to combat1 and flank1, results:
    With flank1 we have 6 chariots still alive, in Karakorum there is 6 archers alive and they have a total of 6.6hp.
    Spoiler Flank1 :
    Civ4ScreenShot0000.JPG


    With combat1, we have 5 chariots left, and there is 5 archers left with a total of 3.8hp.
    Spoiler Combat1 :

    Civ4ScreenShot0002.JPG


    I should have created a map from scratch and added "Add new random seed at reload" to try this out multiple times. Drawing conclusions from just one trial is not good, but it looks like combat1 is performing slighly better imho.
    With combat1 we managed to kill one more archer, at the cost of one more chariot, which I think is good since I set up 2 chariots per archer.
    The archers that are left is also abit more damaged, so if we had more chariots they would die faster.
     
  12. krikav

    krikav Theorycrafter

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    You say this has been a heated debate for some time previously. Has there been any large scale tests and conclusions? Anyone who can dig up relevant links?
     
  13. Rusten

    Rusten Deity

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    Seems I have stirred the hornet's nest.
    I'm not sure which is better between flanking or not in this situation. Seemed a close decision and I rated retaining chariots and eventually getting flanking 2 in some cases. I had more than enough to grab the first 2 cities in any case.

    @Lain
    Spoiler :
    I quickly fast-forwarded through your youtube vid and your play makes no sense to me. Maybe you've already addressed it in the commentary, but how can you defend rushing mathematics and then having only 2 workers to chop? Dreadful. If you had gotten early workers (at least 4) you could clear all the forests and attack with a huge HA army way earlier. Even at 650 BC you have 7 forests or something remaining in the starting territory.

    Looks you succeeded anyway, but let's not be results oriented.
     
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  14. Fippy

    Fippy Mycro Junkie Queen

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    Not sure, was a difficult topic (for me at least ;)) cos it's not very rewarding for discussions.
    x-post with Rusten, yup i think we can all agree on flanking 2 being better than c2 for chariots against Archers.
    And if you have enuf chariots, trying to reach F2 with some makes sense.
     
  15. sampsa

    sampsa Ghost

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    If it's not rewarding, it's because the discussion hasn't been analytical. People take sides based on their previous experience, which may or may not be heavily influenced by variance. It might be that the subject is too difficult to draw definite conclusions though, and this is probably what Fippy means.

    The consensus seems to be that F2 is better than C2 against archers and it seems that way for me, too. C1 seems to be better than F1 though, and I think the first attack matters more, but maybe also this just depends...
     
  16. krikav

    krikav Theorycrafter

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    @Rusten I agree on more workers earlier. Getting those latent forest hammers out ASAP is a big prio. I had four workers in my successful try.
    But then again... I went stright to BW and failed miserably my first attempt at this map, so I'm claiming no overall expertice here.

    I really have to try out chariots, I have done plenty of axerushes but I can't remember a single chariot rush.
    How I would handle promotions is that I would promote to c1 on all of the first wave, then continue with unpromoted chariots on injured defenders. If anyone reaches xp5 they would get F2 for next attack.
    This promotion-healing is important, since every turn spent healing after the first city is a big loss.
    Comparing 8 chariots at full HP at a turn, with 10 chariots at full HP 2 turns later, in many cases the 8 earlier is better as speed is of outmost importance.

    @Lain, I saw in your latest video that you promoted a HA to c2 when handling the stray archer.
    I really appreciate you playing it safe and that you don't trust your luck which has been proved lacking previously. But I would almost certainly just promoted to c1 in that situation and saved the other one for healing.
    Having a HA at ~1 hp is almost as bad as having a dead one.
    I would accept going from 95% odds to 93% odds to save that healing promotion.
     
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  17. krikav

    krikav Theorycrafter

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    A worker chops 5H/turn w/o math.
    With math it's 7.5H/turn.
    I got HBR at T73, and if I strike at T88 15 turns later and all workers has spent all those turns chopping non-stop, what has math given me?

    If I have two workers it's 15Turns * 2.5 (Math boost) * 2 (workers) = 75, or 1.5 horse archers.
    If I have four workers, it's 3 horse archers extra.

    But a more useful and pragmatic way to think about it, is probably:
    "I plan to attack at T88, how many workers do I need to have in place at T73 to be able to chop every single forest by then?"

    Looking at my T73 screenshot https://forums.civfanatics.com/thre...p-for-me-to-play.620140/page-17#post-15315018 we can see 19 forests.
    19 forests is at least 19*4 = 76 workerturns (likely more because I'm finishing some mines, and some turns lost in transit, so say 85 instead.
    How many workers is needed to produce 85 workerturns in 15 turns? 86/15 = 5.666.
    So basically, I'm 1.5 workers short. :)
     
  18. Rusten

    Rusten Deity

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    That example doesn't include pre-chopping forests.
    If you get 4-5 workers early you will have multiple forests that can be chopped in 2 turns (including the movement), which speeds up the HA attack significantly.
     
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  19. krikav

    krikav Theorycrafter

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    What do you delay instead? Skimp on mines?
    Fewer libraries? No barracks/stables? A city less?

    I had only two workers at T65 when I bulbed math and chopped two more.
    At what time aprox should the extra 2-3 workers had been built?

    I really don't like pre-chopping this early in the game. Instead of 4 workerturns I now have to spend 5 to get the chop done. The first 3 workerturns spent prechopping I have to spend 10-20 turns before I get the benefit!
    And it's not like I have zero use of the hammers before HBR either, just finishing the chops gives me more stuff earlier.
     
  20. Rusten

    Rusten Deity

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    Out of curiosity I replayed with horchers in mind. I got 5 workers. 4 of them slow-built and the 5th chopped. Justified this to myself as those 2 chops unlocked mines I wanted to use.
    I built 3 cities (standard placement) and got 3x barracks and 2x library. Barracks are the last build.

    Result:
    10 horchers and 5 chariots by 825 BC.
    DoW on Genghis 825 BC with 3 chariots in place to pillage iron --> easy game.

    I did not spend much time micromanaging, so better results can be reached, but I finished HBR end of turn 75 and was ready to attack T82.
    In hindsight you can maybe justify stables here, but I didn't use them in my quick game.
     
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