Pyramids

coanda

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Just looking to get a sense of when people out there would build Pyramids, and why.

I struggle with this decision, so I'm hoping to get some expert opinions on this.

What conditions make it a stronger or weaker choice? Obvious ones would be things like Stone makes it stronger; starting boxed in by a nearby Gandhi makes it a weaker choice... but there are lots of other factors that I'd think might be significant. Should a PHI leader be an often-decisive factor, or is it just something worth weighing in borderline cases?
What sort of openings do you use when you're getting it (tech path, pre-Pyramids builds, post-Pyramids "catch-up in land" builds)? What's a "good" build time for Pyramids?
Any sample games where building pyramids was debatable, and arguments in favor of or against it in those particular games.

Personally I'm most interested in the more common settings: no Huts / no Events, Standard sized map, Normal/Epic speed, Emperor/Immortal/Deity difficulty.
 

Cam_H

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The sensible answer is to avoid building it yourself as it's so expensive. Maybe with Stone + Industrious, or Stone + Philosophical, perhaps. Spiritual works well too (no Anarchy).

Without a doubt this World Wonder is my 'Achilles' Heel', I think it's a brilliant Wonder that I probably shoot for in half of my games. :blush:

Industrious, Philosophical, One City Challenge, access to Stone, heavily forested start ... all conditions conducive for me to at least consider it.

OCC aside, I'd not start building it 'seriously' until I had my capital + two cities founded, and have sufficient spawn busters out already. I'd make sure you get basic Worker tech's covered incl. Bronze Working before Masonry unless you can Quarry a resource.

In terms of completion time, like The Parthenon, it can go very early or surprisingly late - it's just one of those WoWs that's not got a 'bankable' completion time. If you can see an AI with Stone, or have bumped into a couple of Industrious leaders, I'd probably 'be sensible' and forget it.

I'm sure the general sentiment on this forum is that if you channelled all of those :hammers: into Axes and go off stomping, you'd be far better off. Under ideal conditions, your immediate neighbour's built it 'for you'.

Possibly worth noting that there are an awful lot of semi-confrontational leaders with Hereditary Rule as their favourite civic, and by-passing this with Pyramids-based Representation does run the slight risk of missing shared favourite civic diplo' bonuses. Obviously you can swap into HR if you feel threatened, but that sort of nerfs the reason you went to all that trouble to get The Pyramids in the first instance.
 

yatta77

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EDIT: ^^cross posting with the above one :)

Just looking to get a sense of when people out there would build Pyramids, and why.
2 AM here, and I was going to bed. Luckily tomorrow I'm in Holiday. :D
I struggle with this decision, so I'm hoping to get some expert opinions on this.
I'm not an expert compared to some other players, but I play Civ IV since vanilla, and this is the wonder I built the most. So I dare dropping my modest 2:commerce:.

Please consider this is not an expert mathematical analysis, just a bunch of silly IMOs. :lol:

What conditions make it a stronger or weaker choice?
If you ask me: (a) peace or war; (b) playing toward SE or toward CE.
With peace and SE obviously in favor of the 'mids.

I never tried to play the police state early, maybe someone could call me wrong on the war issue.

Obvious ones would be things like Stone makes it stronger; starting boxed in by a nearby Gandhi makes it a weaker choice... but there are lots of other factors that I'd think might be significant. Should a PHI leader be an often-decisive factor, or is it just something worth weighing in borderline cases?

Uhm... hard to say. Phi-what? Gandhi Phi-Spi (with a fast worker building mines!) surely, but more for the Spi IMO. Switching helps. It is not just about representation. But yes, Phi is a + more than the majority of the other traits IMO.

What sort of openings do you use when you're getting it (tech path, pre-Pyramids builds, post-Pyramids "catch-up in land" builds)?
Mining is on the way, and masonry is needed. :p
Then I take the few techs I need, and after I usually beeline alphabet from AH.
- The Great Library synergies very well in a space race victory
- Parthenon + Sistine Chapel in a cultural victory, Artists = raw 4:science: 6:culture: +50%:gp: from Parthenon (you can add here also Taj Mahal, and, no matter what they say, Great Library as well). But Parthenon and Sistine are way stronger than Great Library here.

What's a "good" build time for Pyramids?
For me, turn 60-80. In culture games, early it is better it is (for 1000years culture); in space ship, this doesn't matter.

Any sample games where building pyramids was debatable, and arguments in favor of or against it in those particular games.
Sorry, I didn't understand the question.

If you ask what is the deal with them, I say 500:hammers: in the early game. I mean, you have to catch that production "loss" later, so you better leverage the power of your expansive wonder somehow (in my case mostly early representation, US before Democracy if/when I have a bunch of gold from TT, and maybe the possibility to run police state if attacked: especially with spiritual it is nice).

The early GE is nice, if you build say the Sistine Chapel with it, you get back almost all your hammers. Well, 100+ turns later of course.

If you leverage it well, it is never useless and pays for itself in the majority of the cases. Sure, there are exceptions. But also when it was a bad call, it is never a bad/useless wonder if you use your brain on the power it as. University of Sansoke (whatever it is spelled) for example is useless without :religion: buildings. The Pyramids are never in such situation. If I play aggressive don't build them, but I'm HAPPY to capture them.

If you ask me, it is the most powerful wonder*, because it gives "freedom" and you have something nobody has. I mean if I race vs. Gandhi or Mansa in Tech, I'll rather be the one who has the weapon to run Representation.

*(except somehow for the Diplomatic 2, but this is another story, since they enable a victory)

Personally I'm most interested in the more common settings: no Huts / no Events, Standard sized map, Normal/Epic speed, Emperor/Immortal/Deity difficulty.
The standard settings I play too. I might play Epic/Marathon, doesn't really change, except that it is a tiny bit easier to build them.

I hope that this might help somehow to have a different point of view. :)

And I hope all this makes sense in English.
 

MarigoldRan

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Epic increases the goodness of the Pyramids. You have more time to make use of it, and you're more likely to be in a medieval war, where Police State is extremely useful.

One possible method of getting Pyramids without falling behind against your neighbors is to Choke+build Pyramids. The Incans, or the Egyptians are the ones most likely to make use of this. Once again, this is more of an Epic thing, than a Normal thing. The slower the game speed, the more effective.
 

Mylene

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Good food on your (potential) land makes them stronger.
SPI and PHI too.

Overall this is a wonder that the most experienced players (aka Deity) almost always want if they see stone very close, cos it gives many options and enables you to handle cities flexible.
They also become a source of beakers fast without much effort, every city with a food ressource is worth settling now even crappy coastal.
Since bulbing is the fastest way to go in mid game, specialists are most powerful to get going.

The cost is kind of overrated, when for example i found a (more or less) crappy stone city that does the mids (while the capital focuses on expanding) all it basically needs is some forests.
 

AbsoluteZero

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If I have stone I consider it, at the very least for the fail gold. If I don't have stone I almost never go for it.

Rep scientists + caste are one reason to get it. Police state is another. An early US might actually come in handy if you get a couple of great merchants.
 

vranasm

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without stone I don't bother to tech masonry and pick up masonry later in trades.
Sometimes even with stone.

But it's nice to have mids I tell you!

edit:
well last NC game I built it, but I think it was mostly due to being industrious, having Bureau and some trees still standing... I think I wanted some fail gold initially :) getting it at T85 which I consider late.

Good date is imo around T70
 

MarigoldRan

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without stone I don't bother to tech masonry and pick up masonry later in trades.
Sometimes even with stone.

But it's nice to have mids I tell you!

edit:
well last NC game I built it, but I think it was mostly due to being industrious, having Bureau and some trees still standing... I think I wanted some fail gold initially :) getting it at T85 which I consider late.

Good date is imo around T70

What speed? Normal or Epic?
 

Nick Carpathia

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I'm more impressed with oracling Civil Service. Very risky strategy, I can never get that to work without crippling my expansion and food.
 

Dirk1302

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Don't build it unless you have stone and not so too much else to do. Without stone this wonder will always be too expensive /iffy on deity.
 

Tristan_C

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Agreed, if we consider building 'mids under "necessary and sufficient" reasons, stone practically comprises the whole "necessary" part, which eliminates it from a great many games...

In a peaceful setting I'd rather have the small army of workers and settlers I could make instead, but it's an option, at least, with stone.
 

Kid R

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I think the game designers priced the pyramids very well, and the discussion of whether to build them will go on as long as people play the game.

I'd usually rather have the 3 settlers and 3 workers for the hammers at that stage of the game. To the OP question I think apart from stone everything else is a minor factor.
 

QuixotesGhost

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I like to have stone + an additional "booster" before I build the 'mids. Generally Math, but Organized Religion and Forges work, and two out of the three + Stone are pretty awesome.

I'll build it if it looks like the easiest way to raise my happy cap and I can make use of specialists.

+s for building pyramids

- Stone
- Industrious, Philisophical, Spirtual, Creative
- Spare Trees
- Additional reason to tech math (like playing as ottomons)
- Lack of Luxuries
- the ability to painlessly swap to Organized Religion
- Attrative Land for running specialists

-s for building pyramids

- Financial, Charasmatic
- Attracive Early War target
- Hemmed in
- Glut of Luxuries
- Reasons to follow the Religion line (for Monarchy, paradoxically stone is a reason for following the religion line)
- Lots of Good cottage land.
 

Zechnophobe

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I think the game designers priced the pyramids very well, and the discussion of whether to build them will go on as long as people play the game.

I'd usually rather have the 3 settlers and 3 workers for the hammers at that stage of the game. To the OP question I think apart from stone everything else is a minor factor.

Me too. They are a really powerful thing to get, but costed high enough you really have to decide if it is worth it. Compounded by, of course, the fact that not ALWAYS does someone try to build them. As time goes on, and your resources more impressive, it gets more and more tantalyzing.

Sure that cost was a lot when you had one city, but it's 500 BC and you have 5, and the capital has a lot more production...
 
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I would include two more reasons for building them: your leader doesn't have any good economic traits or if my land except the capital and one other city is pretty poor but I at least have some food that I can use.

Monty especially can make good use of them, with his sac altars.
 

QuixotesGhost

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If I lack economic traits, I actually prefer the Great Lighthouse as a wonder since trade routes are somewhat isolated from economic traits, and it's less of a hammer investment. ORG, FIN, IND helps, but you can just run specialists instead of working coast. It's one of my favorite wonders as Toku, particulalry since he starts with fishing.
 
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@QuixotesGhost: Fair enough; I often do the same. The thing is, though, the GLH takes a huge commerce investment. I have to know that I have lots of coast before I get too far into my explorations. Plus, there's always that niggling feeling, "oh, I can just go for the collosus if I miss out on the GLH." Of course, if I have lots of coast, I probably don't have the spare production anyway.
 

pi-r8

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Definitely not worth it without stone. Even then, only if you have very food rich land, and you aren't racing to expand.
 
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