[BNW] Questions about roads

Khilak

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Sep 27, 2007
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68
Hello gentlemen. I am a struggling Deity player.

I saw in the "Cutthroat Culture " post some comments about building roads carefully. Usually when I play Deity games I connnect all my cities with roads. Is that optimal play? I used to think yes, because if the improved movement and GPT, but I see that expert players don't do that and they even delete some roads later on. Is there some resource in this forums about roads on Deity? Thanks!
 

Mizzenmast

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Jun 1, 2021
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Hello, I don't know of other resources nor would I call myself an expert player but here is the basic calculus. City connections are always optimal play because they provide gold and sometimes happiness (Liberty policy or the Exploration Harbor policy for sea connections.) Almost all early connections will be made with Roads, even between cities which are both coastal on the same continent, because the mobility bonus is useful (for Workers and GP as much as military) and it saves early Production on Harbors which are kind of weak in themselves (instead requiring Worker power which is plentiful if you steal many in the early game). But it takes some practice to figure out when a road should be prioritized, because many factors determine its importance, including:

-size of the capital (Bigger capital will improve connection gold from every city, making it always important to grow even without Tradition)
-size of the other city
-length of the road; most road costs will break even with connection gold by the time your Workers are ready to build them
-How badly you need gold in the short-term
-Worker power; the profit from connections will usually not large enough to pull your Workers away from improving tiles while your cities are first growing. If you have an excess of Workers you can start Roads earlier, otherwise you will usually wait until your cities are growing more slowly and there are unworked, improved tiles for them to grow into.
-Mobility. Rougher terrain makes roads better, and you can move units from one side of the empire to the other quickly, meaning you need fewer units overall to feel secure at your borders.

Harbors cost 2gpt maintenance, so your first naval connection will cost 4gpt, and subsequent ones 2gpt. This can lead to nice profit, but it sucks fitting Harbors into the builds of your expansion cities, because they cost many hammers and you can end up delaying them a lot based on always having something better to build. Happiness policies make early Harbors better. Carthage is supreme because her Harbors cost neither gold nor production. In theory, Harbor connections are vulnerable to naval blockades but the AI will never take full advantage of this.
And Harbors are much better than roads once Railroad is unlocked in the late game. Not only do they get the RR production bonus immediately, instead of having to wait for Workers to change your whole road network, they will avoid the increased maintenance of railroads as well. This is probably why you have seen players deleting certain roads. If a sea connection is possible, there will usually come a point a little before RR that building a Harbor and deleting the road can pay off in production and gold. But they are never getting rid of city connections.
 

beetle

Deity
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@Khilak our deleting roads was because, as a succession game, there was less than perfect communication/coordination about where the roads should be. Also we built roads incrementally between expos, but then ended up without good east/west pathing, to the front line fighting. So there was little bit of rebuilding of one point make things a little better, but that was abandoned.

You want roads between all your cities, all game long, for the gold connection bonus. You also want a railway connection for all cities for the production bonus. Coastal cities with a harbor do not need railways however.
 
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Khilak

Chieftain
Joined
Sep 27, 2007
Messages
68
Thank you @beetle !! . So even an expansion say, with 2 pop, is optimal play to connect it with roads to the capital?
I will resume my Deity play when I finish my holidays and this info is very valuable for me!
 

Nizef

King
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Oct 22, 2018
Messages
994
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Finland
Thank you @beetle !! . So even an expansion say, with 2 pop, is optimal play to connect it with roads to the capital?
I will resume my Deity play when I finish my holidays and this info is very valuable for me!

A new expand should be connected sooner or later. However, I would recommend to do the following calculation: the number of new road sections required should about equal the population of the expand when you start building the road. Thus, I would not build a seven tile road to a pop2 expand but rather wait until it is maybe pop5 or pop6. This could of course change, if the road is needed earlier for military activities or for some other reason (like on the path to a CS quest and you need the bonus from that specific CS asap).
 

beetle

Deity
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@Nizef rule of thumb for the road being break-even is what I go by. I still have not figured out gpt for my wide Liberty play, as there is usually a period of the game where my science crashes because of negative gpt.

One of the most compelling features of Civ5, I would argue, is that one can be a struggling Deity player. Really, that is still where I am at, after all these years. I very much enjoyed Civ II and SMAC at the highest difficulty level. With Civ III/IV/VI, I never was able to progress, and I found that extremely disappointing.
 

beetle

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Lol, yeah, not the sort of maths most of us can do in our head!

Works out that if the pop (of the expo) > new road segments, the player is running a profit.
 

cocls

Chieftain
Joined
Sep 2, 2019
Messages
37
Lol, yeah, not the sort of maths most of us can do in our head!

Works out that if the pop (of the expo) > new road segments, the player is running a profit.

I will not do the math myself when I'm actually playing a game lol.
I just want to support this simple calculation as it's good enough in most cases. It's also what I follow in my game.
 
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