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Prince, boxed in by JC

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Strategy & Tips' started by vhhawk, Feb 4, 2010.

  1. vhhawk

    vhhawk Warlord

    Joined:
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    Oklahoma City
    So I make my first start on Prince, playing as Willem of Orange, large map, archipelago, snaky continents. The starting location is not that great for expansion and it takes me a while to get rolling. Well, I'm rolling now, as much as I can be. My cities are almost all hammer-poor and if not for slavery and whipping I'd have no buildings. Still, I have moved into a slight tech lead. And somehow, I have played the diplomacy cards well enough to keep my nearest neighbor Julius 'pleased' and even 'friendly' for quite a while. Unfortunately he DOW'd my other best buddy Frederick and put me in the position of DOW'ing Fred as well. Frederick turned out to be the worst enemy of several other civs so this eventually helped my relations in a global sense.

    After expanding on the home island-continent as much as I could, I saw some resources on the landmass to the south, and moved two settlers down there and staked my claim. This turns out to be a north/south tongue extending down to JC's continent. I flipped his nearest city, Medialanus (sp?), with a Great Artist culture bomb, and built culture buildings to stabilize it and to further erode his holdings down there. I've done some good things in this game like reaching Liberalism first, using the free tech to take Economy, and using that Great Merchant to start a golden age and switch 3 civics. Otherwise I've put so much effort into cottaging and building up my empire financially that my military is not match for JC's -- 0.3 power ratio and of course he is cranking out the GGs fast and furious, I'm boxed in from further expansion, and my GP production is almost at a standstill. I'm not really worried about anybody else at this point but I sure hate sleeping next to Julius.

    Thoughts or suggestions for forward strategy? Savegame is attached.

    Also attached is a funny screenshot. After discovering Writing and trading maps around I found an unpopped hut near my western shores, and the villagers gave me Astronomy. Wow!
     

    Attached Files:

  2. Riot

    Riot Warlord

    Joined:
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    Hm. You mentioned that your cities are hammer poor. Think you can beeline to Steam Power and get some Dikes up and running?

    Can also consider turning your southern towns into a colony to off maintenance as well potentially.
     
  3. peapd

    peapd Chieftain

    Joined:
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    I think you're doing fine. You have a tech lead and plenty of land - 7 or so good cities.

    I played through this for about 20 minutes, quitting right before I was going to DoW on Julius with a stack of Rifles/Cannons against his maces.

    Your land is fairly hammer poor, so using the Draft option via Nationalism is the key here. I got an army built in no time at all.

    My tech path was Steel (cannons), then back to Replaceable Parts > Rifling > Nationalism (an oops moment here, I assumed you already had it). I'm not sure why you're currently on SciMeth.

    I changed the build queues of most cities to Universities, whipped them, then put Oxford in capital, whipped it. Once Uni's were up everyone went Barracks/Cannons. Whip/draft/repeat.


    I think that a problem was building Globe Theater in the Capital, I would have put it somewhere else.

    Anyway, this game should be a win, try playing it out. Good Luck!
     
  4. Nilmerf

    Nilmerf Warlord

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    Oct 2, 2006
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    You seem to be going for a cultural victory without going for a cultural victory. Scrap your 10% culture slider ASAP and run 100% science for as long as you can. Your golden age timing was very poor, you should have waited for dikes! Also, there is no real city specialization going on.. don't know why you built the National Epic in a city with spices and gold. Should have built it in a city with at least two food (Utrecht) and run specialists. I don't want to sound too negative, so I'll say that's it's great you have a lot of towns with a financial leader.

    Strategy going forward:
    1. Settle the uninhabited islands quick! Lots of goodies like fish and gold.
    2. Scrap Scientific Method research unless you're hellbent on winning Physics and Communism races, in which case just trade for it with Boudica.
    3. Tech towards Steam Power for dikes, and Democracy for Universal Suffrage. Both of these means your production increases, and you'll be able to rushbuy with your nice town/trade route economy.
    4. Go for space. Once you have all of the required techs, convert all towns to workshops.
     
  5. vhhawk

    vhhawk Warlord

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    Thanks for the great suggestions. I got off on that cultural kick in trying to get some breathing room down south. National Epic went in Maastricht because I wanted the cultural push there, and I wanted to focus GA points there. I'm pretty terrible at the specialist stuff, just trying to get cottage figured out for now. And I was in fact hellbent on getting to Physics, and pretty much at that point lost my way. Completely pulled a brain fade and forgot about dikes, though they are a big reason I like Willem. I'm still learning my way around the tech tree and could not remember what tech brought in dikes.

    @Nilmerf - I did not want to take the economic hit on the outlying islands, nor run the invasion risk with them so close to Genghis. But I'm certainly not resource rich at this point. The horse island was my one grab. I could have settled the big tundra island to the west and chopped out lighthouse/granary but thought it was a waste of a settler -- until after Julius took it and I realized I had two seafood tiles right there in the BFC. Another brainfade.

    @peapd - Thanks for all that but especially the vote of confidence. As far as the Globe in the capital, it looked to me like Amsterdam was going to be my best production city so I figured I might as well make use of that. I shake my head in amazement at your 20 minutes progress - it would take me much longer to work my way through that.

    @Riot - I'd like to turn Julius himself into a BFC (Big Fat Colony)! These ideas will help. I'm a long time player of Civ and Civ2, played a bit of vanilla Civ4 last year, and have been playing a lot of BTS for the past few months, but I still have yet to wrap my head around this game. The complexity just continues to throw me for loops.
     
  6. mariogreymist

    mariogreymist Deity

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    Betray JC before he betrays you. With a tech lead, it's not too hard to draft up an army after building some cannons (as Peapd did) and just romp on any pre-rifling civ. Wars with that kind of tech lead are almost comical. Since you covet his land, I'd make that top priority, then make for whichever victory condition you choose (they are all possible at this point, I'd say)
     
  7. timmy827

    timmy827 King

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    The advice you've been given is good (with the exception of making a colony. Honestly, NEVER do this. Makes no sense to go to the effort of settling and building up another island just to turn it over to AI mismanagement. Also, currently your colonial expenses are minimal 5 GPT precourthouses...if you make a push to take out JC, you are close to Communism to make it moot. )

    I'm a little more curious how you got to this point and what you are trying to accomplish. Building Sistine points to a culture win, but you haven't spread the other religions, and aren't in Confucianism despite sinking tons of hammers into its buildings?

    The Economics merchant is nice, but it's one of the cheaper techs of that era. Since no one else had Education, I would have taken a bigger prize and self-researched Econ.
     
  8. Riot

    Riot Warlord

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    ?

    Spawning colonies isn't a bad idea always. It can save you a ton of maintenance (unless you're running State Prop), and the AI will do the trouble often of settling the continent and sending you the resources.

    But okay, maybe not this situation.
     
  9. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam Top Logic

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    Actually colonies are soundly terrible unless you're trying to abuse the land target capitulation rule. Not only are there ways to set up the ability to settle distant cities w/o crashing, but colonies also still suffer a bug ---> confirmed non-action by multiple posters. Colonies that don't work tiles and delete gifted workers...JUST what we needed to make a weak mechanic weaker!

    Colonies help the AI though since it will do stupid things and it can bail itself out that way. Of course AI colonies still piss me off since they ruin normal vassaling. If you're fighting and beating an AI down, the fact that a completely unrelated AI across the world (maybe you haven't even met it yet) spawned a colony should NOT make it harder to cap the guy you're warring with.

    But oh, it will. Significantly, too.
     
  10. vhhawk

    vhhawk Warlord

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    Well that's a darn good question. I do favor cultural spread. I like the cushion around my cities and mostly I like watching the erosionary force of it on neighboring states. That is probably my favorite mechanic in the game right there. But I don't care for the cultural VC. Three legendary cities? Bleh. I wish there was a better way to measure cultural pressure and reward that instead. But I'm aware of how things are so I play towards culture as much as I dare to.

    The shorter answer is that I didn't intend to found Confucianism, didn't want to mess with religions at all, but almost as soon as I founded it, it spread to JC, so I adopted it and went OR for the 25% hammer bonus. But when free religion came available I wanted the research bonus from that and so I used the GM to pop the golden age to switch. Sistine was an(other) attempt to position myself culturally down on Julius' island. I was working for a while there with the idea of simply teching up to broadcast towers and using cultural pressure to take more of his cities, soften him up for the eventual tanks invasion. But it finally sunk in that that was a slow boat to ruin the way he's growing, and my tech advantage was too slim to count on for long.

    I have had a sound plan and purpose for everything I've done in this game, but I am a slow learner. :crazyeye: I'm still relishing the relative freshness of it all.
     
  11. vhhawk

    vhhawk Warlord

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    :sad: Boy. Talk about missteps. Two serious blunders put me in the tank here. First, I teched happily away in the wrong sequence. Steam power came first because I wanted dikes to supplement my hammers. Then came rifling, then nationhood. Between drafting and whipping I staged a big stack of Riflemen. Just waiting for Steel for those cannons, and I'd be off to the races. Wrong. About 4 turns before I got steel, I saw riflemen on each of JC's nearby cities. I panicked, split my stack in two, and went after three of his cities on the south side, burning through riflemen like they were cordwood. By the time I got cannons, it was over. I had captured two of his cities, wasted 8 rifles in a futile assault on a third, and lost most of my navy to his frigates. Worse, I had drafted my cities into paralysis. When Julius finally would talk, I had to buy peace with Economics. Lesson here was that I needed cannons more than rifles. Whip cannons, draft rifles. Steam power could have waited. That would have made a huge difference.

    Beyond that I made a tactical mistake. Instead of attacking JC's head I hit him at his feet. Rome was close by. If I had consolidated all my forces on an amphibious invasion/assault on Rome, I probably had a good chance of taking it out and vassaling JC, even given my lack of cannons. What did I do instead? I went after his minor cities to the south. :rolleyes:

    Well, I still have a pulse here. My cities were decimated by the draft/whip cycle, but I've used the leftover rifles to take out barbarian cities on the islands to the southwest, beat everybody else to Combustion so now I have destroyers, and am almost to Democracy. If I can get my sick economy back on its feet, I've still got a shot at this.
     
  12. mariogreymist

    mariogreymist Deity

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    If I read that correctly, the biggest mistake was probably drafting before teching steel. Drafting greatly reduces your tech rate. (must leave buro AND you lose pop) Just build rifles until steel is on you, then draft your big stack from the high pop/low production cities while your high production cities build cannons.

    And just remember this game...I always learn more from my failures than my successes.
     
  13. vhhawk

    vhhawk Warlord

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    Thanks. I'm going to imprint this on my brain. :scan:

    Just to put a fork in this one, it's over. I kept up a string of peace treaties with Julius by begging a few coins off him. Got my city pops and economy rolling again, teched Combustion and built a few destroyers, started producing machine guns, things were looking up -- and boom! Those two stacks o'doom JC had been marching around were meant for me. Not that it was a big surprise, but shucks. Back to the drawing board.
     
  14. mariogreymist

    mariogreymist Deity

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    Live and learn. Next time you'll have those cannons ready for him while they are dominant.
     
  15. Nilmerf

    Nilmerf Warlord

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    I don't know about drafting with this leader and this map. Probably should have went for Suffrage/Free Speech and built or bought your units. With the combined bonuses of Dikes, Financial trait, super-towns, and trade routes you have the foundation for a serious economy. There is no need to panic unless Julius Caesar is being a wheehorn. If you're interested in replaying, try building up your economy first and attacking him with Infantry and one or all of Artillery/Navy/Airforce.
     

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