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Pre-Industrial Age Wars

Discussion in 'Civ3 - Strategy & Tips' started by Globex, Sep 19, 2007.

  1. JDAllison

    JDAllison Prophet of Doom

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    I generally don't use cavs on the front lines after I get tanks. In my last game, I had about 100 vet and elite cavs sitting around, doing nothing, so I sent them against the most backward civ in the game (who had just finished researching Fudalism). I also sometimes use them to mop up any workers, etc that I can find. I've pillaged, I've attacked the spearman that's left after the tanks killed the infantry in the enemy city, used them for spotters for my bombers, and things like that. Yeah, I'm smart enough to know that 20 cavs are probably not going to do much against infantry or mech infantry that's fortified inside a city or metro. Of course, I don't usually get into that situation, because I'm usually ahead in tech and beat everyone to MT and Nationalism.
     
  2. Taras Bulba

    Taras Bulba gone

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    really? That is often my ENTIRE front line. Battles on the front Lines are often suicide attacks. I don't want my tanks to die, so i send out my obsolete units to die, so i can build more tanks w/o going over the unit limit :p

    call me evil, call me heartless... but they had a VERY long life. :lol:
     
  3. JDAllison

    JDAllison Prophet of Doom

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    @Taras Bulba:

    I like to put my most advanced units on the front, bomb the crap out of the defenders, then waltz right in. The only thing that I see happening when I attack a stronger defender with obsolete units is that he gets promoted. I would rather disband my extra units within a corrupt city and use the shields to build another unit or a building. But, hey, to each his own, man! ;)
     
  4. D0NIMATRIX

    D0NIMATRIX Full of drivel

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    Yes, whenever I have cavalry and then tanks, I always use the tanks first to destroy or weaken their strong units, and if I don't have enough tanks I just use cavalry. But otherwise just disbanding them or attacking lame stuff with them is the best thing to do. Cavalry should upgrade to tanks...
     
  5. psweetman1590

    psweetman1590 Chieftain

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    I would usually just suicide my cavalry. Two cavalry are roughly as effective as one tank (thanks to the vagarities of the rng), so just bomb and send them in. If the enemy gets promoted, just bomb them again. It's still only one hp, doesn't make any difference at all whether they're elite or conscript if they both only have one hp.
     
  6. Nergal

    Nergal Chieftain

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    Cav are handy, I bomb everything within range and hit them with cavalry if possible. Watch the AI, their cavalry are everywhere picking off workers and the injured.
     
  7. Taras Bulba

    Taras Bulba gone

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    what i always do is i bomb the strong units, until the weaker units show, and attack with cavalry.

    the next turn, the cavalry die with the counter attack. I bomb those attacking units to death, and come in with the tanks and kill the stronger units defending the cities. Its always worked for me
     
  8. D0NIMATRIX

    D0NIMATRIX Full of drivel

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    I think it would just be smarter to wait until bombers AND tanks are available, and that you have a decent amount of each, then use the built-up cavalry to attack weak stuff after bombing it with bombers, and use fewer bombers on infantry because tanks are so much more powerful than it. Most of the time, however, the AI is still getting infantry, so you often don't even have to bomb the riflemen.
     
  9. pol1

    pol1 kayaking physicist

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    why wait? cavs are main attack force for whole age until You get tanks! and are upgraded from knights/horsemen - so You might have lot of them from MA wars.
    that conquered terrain will work for You - points, unit support, specialists' farms.

    and about suicide attacks : let's say that half of this age is a trench warfare - with inf - but then arti and earlier cannons should redline/damage them.
    cavs + inf + arti make decisive conquests (well knights + cat/trebs and earlier units might just leave for cavs to finish things).
     
  10. D0NIMATRIX

    D0NIMATRIX Full of drivel

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    In response to the first part: Cavalry seem to have a knack for dying against riflemen, and seriously, the artillery in the game is a joke. Ever tried breaking a wall with pebbles? They're terrible.

    In response to the second part: the point of cavalry is high-speed blitzkriegs, and riflemen only move one square, and artillery can't move after shooting. Might as well just use longbowmen...
     
  11. Snarkhunter

    Snarkhunter Chieftain

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    How 'bout 80 ICBMs instead? :D

    kk
     
  12. anaxagoras

    anaxagoras Chieftain

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    Used properly, artillery can be a game-breaker. The problem with artillery is that it has no value on its own, and it is slow. It needs to be in the front line, and it needs to be protected. That means those cavalry stacks are just itching to outrun it, and if they aren't careful, can die in droves as a result. Cavalry can move faster than anything up to panzers and MA, but they are relatively weak and can't take out a prepared position without suffering losses. Bring up artillery to those prepared positions and you won't suffer those losses and your big stack of cavalry is still around to face the next obstacle.

    The difference between artillery and a bunch of longbowmen is that some of the longbowmen die, costing you shields. The great advantage of artillery is that once you build it, you are very likely to keep it for the rest of the game, upgrading as you go. The enemy doesn't get to shoot back at it, so unless you let it get captured, there's no way to lose it. Artillery can't suffer the spearman versus tank problem, because the spearman doesn't get to shoot back.

    And even tanks don't lose to redlined spearmen...much. :spear:
     
  13. D0NIMATRIX

    D0NIMATRIX Full of drivel

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    In response to the first part: Artillery just hampers your troops, requiring some slow defenders and the artillery to come along in a big stack, and as soon as the enemy sees it, he or she will have ample time to bring a defending army of rapid cavalry to hammer away at the stack, whereas if you had only used cavalry, their reinforcements might arrive too late to stop the cavalry. What's more, if you're using cannons, (in shields) 1 cav=2 cannon, 1 cav=1 rifle= 1 1/3 musket, so making a stack of artillery and defenders (unless you draft:) ) is less efficient than a massive stack of doom of cavalry, that will kill riflemen so easily by sheer numbers. That's what the Russians did in BOTH world wars, and it worked quite well, considering that in both they were technologically inferior to the Germans.

    In response to the second part: I don't really mean it, I'm just using longbowmen as an analogy.
     
  14. Aabraxan

    Aabraxan Mid-level Micromanager

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    All of the artillery units are 1-move units, but if properly protected, they allow you to greatly reduce losses by redlining defenders without risking troops.

    In MP play, this may be true. Having never played MP myself, I can't really say. In SP, though, the AI simply isn't that smart. It's smart enough to build cavalry, but it builds an awful lot of defensive and 1-move units. That lets you pound them before making the decision as to whether to put an attacker at risk.

    But only with much higher losses. And higher losses = fewer troops to continue conquest and higher WW.
     
  15. anaxagoras

    anaxagoras Chieftain

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    I assume you use the term "army" loosely here, to mean just "a hoard of units." The AI seldom uses true armies. And if the AI is dumb enough to attack this stack, your mission is accomplished. You get to bombard him to oblivion, leaving your own cavalry unmolested to mop up the redlines and take towns. After all, you are seeking to defeat his military. What better way than to lure him out onto open ground and in range of the guns? If he attacks with his fast units, so much the better. Now we don't have to chase them down.

    I disagree that it is less efficient. First, we'll build more guns than we do leg units (at least 2:1 in our stack), so we'll make maximum use of the 2:1 production efficiency and will produce roughly a third more literal units with same shield output. Second, the artillery can be built in our perpheral cities where we can't afford to build barracks. Essentially, the production used to build the artillery is production we don't have an immediate use for, anyway. Third, and by far the most important, WE DON'T EXPECT TO LOSE THESE UNITS.

    This is what I meant in my response to your point about longbowmen, and something you are also missing about the cavalry. It doesn't matter what the specific units are. When you attack with cavalry, or longbowmen, or any normal attack unit against a prepared position without artillery bombardment, you WILL lose some of your attackers. Unless you have a significant tech advantage, you are likely to lose quite a few units, since the defender gets an advantage in combat. Each unit you lose needs to be rebuilt in order to keep the momentum going. You must count that as part of your cost of war. With a stack of artillery hitting them first, you won't completely elminate the losses, but close. Your stack of units may need to rest and repair from time to time, but it will never (or at least very, very seldom) get any smaller. All that production you are saving can be used on city improvements, wonders, or more units to make your military even bigger.

    This saved production capacity should not be underestimated. If you use artillery judiciously, you can actually find yourself considerably stronger at the end of the war then when you began it, and moving right into the next attack. Far from stopping your conquest so you can rebuild units, you will be tearing your hair out because your artillery stack is too slow to begin hammering your next victim right away. There will be a constant mental pressure to just send the cavalry on ahead anyway. At which point you will lose some of them, and find yourself wasting valuable production and time by having to rebuild again. If you spray cavalry willy-nilly everywhere, you are doing yourself a disservice. There are times when it is best to let the cavs loose and rampage to the enemy rear. But there are also times when it is best to put the reigns to the horses and let risky opportunities pass you by in favor of the no-loss sure thing.

    Artillery requires a peculiar kind of patience to be used effectively.

    Edit: I see I cross-posted with Aabraxan...
     
  16. Sashie VII

    Sashie VII Balance of Power

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    On pre-IA wars, I find them to be very rewarding. Nowadays I've come to see the early AA as a time for warfare, not merely expansion. Personally, I only build a few productive cities as my core. Then with that productivity, I build myself a horde and clear up space for my settlers, gaining tech and other stuff as I do :D
     
  17. AutomatedTeller

    AutomatedTeller Frequent poster

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    Bombardment units have several advantages:

    1 They never die. Might get captured, but never dies.
    2) They are upgradeable from math to whatever it is that gives radar artillery. Yes, the 20 shields you invest in 1500 BC is still in use in 2000 AD. Spears and warriors can do that, but in the middles ages, they are distinctly second-class
    3) They are very flexible - it can be used against ground or naval units, or against the ground.
    4) On ridiculously high levels, the extra units the AI gets are near overwhelming, and you just cannot go toe to toe with the AI, or you will get beat. You need the artillery so your kill ratio makes up for the fact that the AI is producing an infantry every turn from all of their cities.
     
  18. Globex

    Globex President Scorpio

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    I have another question about pre-industrial warfare. I am planning on starting a new game as the Zulu and I wanted to use Impis to pillage my enemy's improvements during war. During the Industrial Age, I do not pillage improvements because I can mass produce settlers in my core and transport them by railroad to the battlefront to 'steal' the enemy infrastructure. However, during the ancient and middle age, the wars usually occur far away from my borders and the enemy infrastructure will not be used by me for a long time.

    Is pillaging a useful tactic in MA and AA wars and if so what is the "right way' to pillage? I have tried a pillaging tactic before but my Impi were slaughtered by enemy archers.
     
  19. D0NIMATRIX

    D0NIMATRIX Full of drivel

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    OK, you guys win:lol: . I'm too tired to argue. I'll try it one day and see how it works, but I meant MP or higher-difficulty SP in my arguments about cavalry vs. artillery.
     
  20. psweetman1590

    psweetman1590 Chieftain

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    On higher difficulties, artillery is a MUST. Because the AI gets large bonuses, you can't afford to take large casualties. Thus, units need to be weakened before they are attacked.
     

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