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Rating the c3c Civs by DocT

Discussion in 'Civ3 Strategy Articles' started by Doc Tsiolkovski, Nov 11, 2004.

  1. Doc Tsiolkovski

    Doc Tsiolkovski Deity

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    :p No def Bombard from JTs. Btw, I don't think the JT is such a bad unit; what I really dislike about them is that you cannot build cheap Archers with Defensive Bombardment because of them...


    On the COM issue:
    You have a point regarding MIL/COM and EXP/COM. :goodjob: Agreed. That indeed is no synergy, only both traits help for the same goal. But that is additional, not synergistic.
    MP: Yes, that seems consensus.
    Alphabet: Like as AGR is the best trait, Alpha is the best starting tech. I think I stick to a bonus for that, but consider giving AGR a bigger bonus.
    JT: Ok, but the problem stays: Do you really benefit more from enabling Barbarians above Emperor so that you can hunt for Slaves, than the Barbs themselves and the GHs for the AI Civs hurt you? I doubt it...
     
  2. Justus II

    Justus II General Staff

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    :blush: Oops, that's what I get for posting from work without checking facts first... They DO enslave on defense if they win, which is cool... :) Sorry!

    Good question. This goes more toward some of the other comments made about map settings, "HoF style", starting locations, and victory conditions. I have a hard time trying to rate the civs 'objectively', partly because I never choose a civ in a vacuum. My limited Civ time has almost always been consumed by some type of structured games, whether it was GOTMs early on, then SGs, the RB Civ Epics, and playing through a few of the conquests myself. I've probably played less than half a dozen games where I actually chose a civ and a random map since Civ3 came out, and only one since C3C came out, so it's hard for me to relate to comments like "I'd choose this civ if I were going for xxx victory" or "is it worth enabling Barbarians" (no offense). My games generally have the settings pre-selected, so I take what I'm dealt, and then try to decide the best course to victory. So in my mind, all civs are somewhat situation-dependent, and I can just offer my opinions on general observations. I generally play in games with barbs enabled (raging, if I get a vote, just because I think that's part of the challenge), so my assessments take that into account. Disabling barbs affects several other civs as well, I think lack of barbs would lessen Sumeria's Enkidu advantage (still nice, but not as critical in the early turns), and would somewhat mitigate Carthage's problem with expensive defenders early. Not to mention how it really cripples all the EXP civs!

    NOTE: I'm not criticizing anyone, if I had the time to play more, I'd love to play a few random games, and probably also some focused games where I chose a civ and map best suited for a specific victory condition, and try for some REAL Synergy! ;)
     
  3. Zardnaar

    Zardnaar Chieftain

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    One thing I'll point out in regards to the Javelin Thrower. The Maya in addition to having the fastest growth traits the enslaved workers can be added to your cities to grow them even faster. In Isions review there are 5 civs in the top tier that are agricultural and it was me who rated Sumeria as a 2nd tier civ. However I would be the 1st to admit Sumeria is very good and can easily be considered a 1st tier civ depending on playstyle, difficulty level etc. At the time (6 months ago give or take) we knew the Agricultural was very good and probably the best. It only ended up 2nd tier because of the defensive UU- alot of the top tier civs have some of the best UU in the game. With reflection however I may be wrong and I disagree with some of the civs Ision rated.

    The JT is a mid tier UU IMHO and often serves me well into the industrial age with the last half dozen or so eventually dying to tanks or entrenched redlined rifleman or infantry. If you avoid upgrading them and use them in stacks with artillery etc I usually have around 30 enslaved workers.
     
  4. kryszcztov

    kryszcztov Chieftain

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    Well, Arathorn, you can laugh but please don't choke ! ;) I don't see why you want to buy some slaves which won't become industrious when you can just (quickly : AGR+IND) build some workers of your own ? Yes, those slaves are ineffective, they lack the industrious flag they should get if everything was coherent !!! BTW, JTs have only 1/3 chance to enslave, and you can still tell me about games where you enslaved 50 slaves ; I'm sure that on a random map it's not that much. And sorry, but upgrading to longbowmen is terrible : the AI will do it and have them crushed, in MP it will suck, and even if you find a use from them when combined with pikes and trebuchets, I'd rather have some gallic swordsmen or some mounted warriors or even some legionnaries !! No, the JT is a mediocre UU all in all. It would be fair (ie. : well in the 2nd UU tier) if the industrious tag was given to slaves. And the Mayans would be amongst the top civs if we got back to PTW's IND too.
     
  5. Justus II

    Justus II General Staff

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    I'd still take 3 slaves, that will never cost unit support, over a home-made worker that I have to give up a precious population point for AND pay unit support on. As quick as Republic comes around, that's 2gpt for the next 200+ turns! Let's go with a fairly conservative 12 slaves, equivalent to 4 workers. That's saving 8gpt (1,600g+), and 4 pop points that could be 2 extra settlers in the early expansion. Note, I'm not saying I wouldn't still build plenty of my own workers as the Mayans, of course I would. But if the Javs mean I can build a few less, and use the pop for better things, they will definitely earn their keep!

    How did this turn into the Javelin Thrower's Anti-Defamation Society?? ;) Anyway, I'm still not saying they're a top-tier unit. Depending on the situation, I'm sure a bunch of Gallics could go raze some cities to grab free workers. But I do think they are a good unit, well worth the extra shields, and do in fact have some synergy with Maya's traits!
     
  6. Arathorn

    Arathorn Catan player

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    Spoken like a man who's never tried to make a beachhead against tough opponents in the middle ages. Pikes+longbows will take MANY fewer casualties than any of the units listed above. Plus, they will then be able to advance. Drop 60 gallic swords on an island and you'll be overrun and killed shortly. But 38 pikes plus 22 longbows is a reasonably effective force. You'll do a TON more damage with the latter on both defense and offense. Sure, if you're facing weak foes, it doesn't matter. And there are certainly times and places 60 gallics is much better.

    But the fact that the AI is clueless when it comes to longbow use doesn't mean *I* have to be. It doesn't mean you have to be, either. 4 unescorted longbows is asking for a thrashing, true. So don't do it!

    Still, I think you're right. Upgrading to longbows is kinda silly. The enslavement possibility is so high and so powerful, I'd rather keep the 2 attack and hope to get lucky occasionally for those slaves the rest of the game.

    Arathorn
     
  7. kryszcztov

    kryszcztov Chieftain

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    In fact I'd say they're currently going against the Mayans' traits synergy, as my previous posts tell. ;) In all honesty I hate non-industrious slaves (currently an "euphemism" (is that English ?)) : they are so slooow. :( I'd rather build my own industrious workers, pay 1 gpt and then 2 gpt for them each, and use some not-so precious population points (AGR means I get them faster again, happiness issues call for stopping population growth, and what about those secondary cities that can't afford to build some 30-shield settlers ?). An important point : I'll quickly have many industrious workers, while you'll tend to gamble on getting slooow slaves (which isn't sure after all). I wonder if Maya does well on Sid, this is a question for Arathorn... ;) And I won't care much for paying 2 gpt in Republic then, since my land will be well developped. No seriously, you tell me about the expansion phase being critical, but the development phase is also critical ; I don't want to gamble on having hypothetical slooow slaves for that. Of course those workers are free of upkeep and are a bonus ability to JTs, but without this ability this UU would be one of the worst of all (well it'd be a Bab archer).
    What I want to say is : the Mayans looked very strong on paper when C3C shipped (to me at least), but they proved average at the end of the day.

    Oh, on another subject. Given some specific settings the Man-O-War can be a really good UU for England. See my PBEM against Beam at CDZ : with this stupid feature called crater, it can be very powerful. And something more interesting : the Man-O-War actually extends the Age of Sail by itself !! It is very powerful in stacks versus (not mandatory) ironclads, and so is excellent until Combustion !
     
  8. Zardnaar

    Zardnaar Chieftain

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    Actually the Man O War is useful well into the modern age.
     
  9. Arathorn

    Arathorn Catan player

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    <Shrug> Some of the time. Given a decent start (essentially required for Sid, from what I've seen/experienced -- a BAD start is a no-go on Sid, even if you can probably win it on deity), they perform quite well. They have some weaknesses and some strengths. Overall, they'd probably be my second to fourth choice on an arbitrary Sid map with a goal of "just win, baby!" Sure, sometimes they'll be screwed, but, in general, if the Mayans are screwed, everybody else would be, too.

    Their biggest weakness is against an early aggressive Sid foe. Generally, an ultra-early attack by a Sid foe is death for anybody, but a few civs can survive (note: survive != thrive -- living with 3 cities and reaching banking when the AI launches is hardly a victory), depending on just how early it is. If you can get to Math, the Mayans are fine. If not, well, it's hope and pray time, for any civ.

    As for gambling on hypothetical slow slaves for development, you really sell yourself (and us) short. Nobody is recommending that. If you plan to have an early war and get slaves, you almost assuredly will (1/3 is a high enough chance that you can plan for it fairly well). If you don't plan to acquire slaves in an early war, then you have to build sufficient workers on your own. I thought that was elementary. But you don't need or want a *lot* of both, if you play it intelligently. You need enough workforce (native workers, slaves, or combination) to keep up with your growth but not necessarily more. Either being above or below is inefficient.

    Your bias against slaves is evident. But I don't think you have any facts to back up your opinions. Cavalierly tossing away 20 gpt (2 gpt per worker times 10 extra workers needed) for a couple hundred turns isn't exactly a valuable idea. Maybe in the games you play 4000 gold isn't much, but some of us do a lot with that kind of cash.

    And, one more thing....stopping population growth??????? For happiness? :boggle: There is NO such thing as growing too fast. Extra growth means more worked tiles means more commerce so you can up lux tax to compensate and still come out ahead. Makes me seriously question your ability when you say things like that (fairly or not, it's true).

    Arathorn
     
  10. Doc Tsiolkovski

    Doc Tsiolkovski Deity

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    Don't do that! (With Barbarians, that is). WW will scyrocket, since you're in something like a locked war with their mother nation. That's the reason why we disabled 'Join Cities' for Slaves in RaR.

    Still, you'll reach size 12 long before Sanitation.

    And Arathorn, I completely agree with the usefulness of Longbows; it's especially them being not 'wheeled' what makes them great for beachheads (since you can disembark them onto Mountains). AFAIKT, the AI will never attack a single Pike/Longbow Combo on a Mountain with anything below attack 4, like they do not attack Elite Infantry before Tanks/Marines.

    It's really odd how half of this thread boils down to pro-Mayan/ pro-JT vs pro-England :lol:.
     
  11. Justus II

    Justus II General Staff

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    Yes, I can tell by now you are not a fan of free labor. ;)
    You make a number of points, but I think you are misunderstanding me, so I will try to respond to them in turn.

    As do I, I build plenty of workers, ESPECIALLY as the AGR/IND Mayans, that is one of their strong suits.

    Have to totally disagree here. First, AGR does equal faster pop growth, but every point is STILL precious in the early game! :) I never let happiness keep me from pop growth, like Arathorn said I'd rather raise lux tax or shuffle MPs to compensate. About the only time I'll deliberately slow population growth is to time it with completion of a granary. As for the corrupt cities, in the 20 turns it would take to crank out 2 workers (assuming 1spt), you could easily time a forest chop and get a settler from the same city. But you are right, sometimes building workers are the best use of those cities, so build workers there!! I'm not advocating barb slave hunting INSTEAD of building workers, just that the JTs allow you to supplement your own workers, making them even more efficient.

    Here again, you seem to assume I'm not building my own workers. It's not a gamble, if I build my own workers, and then just add in the bonuses I get. All I'm saying is that over time, enough bonus workers will save me from having to build a few less workers of my own, and save on unit support in the long run.

    Arathorn's already responded, which is good, :hatsoff: because I don't have much experience with Sid, I'm more in the DG-Diety range.

    I don't mind paying 2gpt for workers either, workers are certainly a worthwhile investment! But if I can save a few of those, it's free money, that can boost research or trading. The well-developed land is the key point on synergy. The Mayans are, to me, a quintessential builder's civ. They can expand quickly, and develop fast to keep up the pace. A fast-attack ancient UU would be wasteful, as they don't generally need an early conquest war to grab territory. The JT gives them a decent all-around unit, which may be a bit expensive, but generates more workers (either from barbs or weak neighbors) to help out with the development. It ties directly in to their preferred strategy, IMHO. :)

    Of course, if you really want to test the Mayans, I'd be glad to play them in a PBEM at CDZ against you. ;)
     
  12. kryszcztov

    kryszcztov Chieftain

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    I'm sorry Arathorn, but I'm a bit annoyed by your arrogance about both your playing skills and your knowledge of the game. I know you're a strong player and know the game well, but that's not an excuse to comment about my supposed low skills. If you want an answer, well I'll give it to you : I can beat Deity, and I've already ranked amongst the top 20 players in the GOTM event while playing with the RBCiv spirit. OK I'm not a Sid freak, but it's not an excuse.

    I could argue about that we don't all play Sid games on pangea with medieval unit stacks, but that'd be too easy. ;)
    I wonder how you can win many slaves while facing many spearmen, swordsmen, and other Antic UUs... And I bet they come when your 1st core is more or so developped, ie. : they're not a critical thing to aim at. Hell I'm not saying the JT is a crappy UU, but it's not strong, I rate mounted warriors well over JTs. I can almost hear some RBCiv players saying speed is power, and you're talking about stacks of trebuchets and longbowmen ; sure they can be effective, but that's not the only way to wage wars. And we don't play on Sid BTW, we can afford losses to speed up our conquering.
    Your argument about losing 4000 gold coins isn't valuable. Because we're discussing the merits of this or that civ. So you'll take the Mayans, and get many slaves, sparing the building of excellent industrious workers. But in the meantime, I'll have my mounted warriors conquering a lot quicker than your javelin throwers, thus getting me some slaves, some gold, maybe some techs, getting me closer to victory, etc... So 4000 gold coins it is not. :p
    Food is essence of this game, the root of everything. But I think 2 undevelopped tiles can be equal to 1 fully developped tile, to take a very simple example. You can use your food to have more citizens, I can use it to have more workers, is it so bad ? And one thing that is difficult to achieve is cranking workers out of the right cities so as the general slider affects all your cities on the same level (just before needing luxury is the ideal). And 12 citizens is a limit too.

    I respect you much, but please stay calm. There is no need to criticize my playing skills after all.
     
  13. kryszcztov

    kryszcztov Chieftain

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    @ Arathorn & Justus II :

    I think you both misunderstood me. ;) I never thought of deliberatingly stop food growth, apart for granary or aqueduct purpose. I was thinking of stopping it by building workers and settlers, a bit different of what you read. :crazyeye: I would always let my population grow, and raise taxes or hire scientists/taxmen if raising taxes is too much. I said that food is power, and AGR being the best trait ; if I think that Maya's food is less "precious", it's because they have more!! It's not like some Sub-Saharian tribes for which food is so precious. The thing is : food is the motor of the game, the source of all wealth ; but at some point you got to invest with it, and that's why I was talking about building workers and settlers. I think that it's currently better to have our own workers than some broken slaves. The day slaves will be correctly tagged I'll change my mind about them, about the JT, about the Mayans.

    I think you don't see my PoV, so let me go back to the initial idea : we are comparing civs, not playing styles !!! Of course you'll build plenty of workers, and of course I appreciate the slaves I can get with the JTs. It's just that, given a random map, I'd prefer to go with the Iroquois and their excellent mounted warriors than with the Mayans and their mediocre javelin throwers. The Iroquois will probably lose 4000 gold coins, but will get much stuff to compensate, so that argument is rather stupid : you talk about the pros and ommit the cons.

    I don't know why a civ with the AGR and IND traits shouldn't get a fast ancient UU ??? Being AGR and IND is the quintessential combo for expanding and developping fast, and this double thing can be used for either building or war. I really have no clue here. AGR+IND allows everything.

    @ Justus II : I'll be glad to play you someday. Not only to settle an argument (I think I'd play badly if there was some pressure). I'm not insulting anyone here BTW. :)
     
  14. Justus II

    Justus II General Staff

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    Sorry, looking back at my post, I phrased that wrong, "wasteful" was certainly not what I meant. Yes, AGR+IND is very flexible. What I meant was that a fast conquest-type UU, while certainly supportable by AGR+IND, doesn't really have any inherent synergy as I think DocT was trying to define the UU-Trait Synergy points. Those two traits (while good in almost any play style) lend themselves especially well to fast expansion coupled with a well-developed core. JT's (IMHO) directly tie into that strategy, by providing ADDITIONAL free workers to complement the IND workers you already have, whether from barbs or from picking on a weak neighbor, without going into al all-out conquest mode. They are versatile in that they can be used as decent settler escorts or early defenders, then go out barb-hunting or to pick off some exploring warriors or early settler/spear pairs. It just seems to me to be a good fit for their traits. :)

    And certainly, I'd like to play for fun, not to prove a point. But you do have me more curious about playing the Mayans again in a more random setting.
     
  15. Sandman2003

    Sandman2003 Chieftain

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    If you need convincing of the power of the Maya on SID level, have a look at Moonsinger's 80K game in the HOF threads. (No not 80K culture win, 80K in end game score!)

    I like the concept of trying to be objective in rating the civs with a point scoring system, and the narrowing of focus to higher difficulty levels. However, I like others here disagree on some of the allocations you have made, Doc.

    For starters it seems inequitable to add bonus points for being good at 100K or 20K culture victories, without giving value to good performance on other victory conditions. A better systme IMHO would be to categorise 'best' performance in each of the given victory conditions and allocate say +1 bonus point per every two categories a civ features in.

    Second, there is no bonus for civs that are better at producing high in game score. Whether you like score or not, it is an integral part of the game, and is just yet another reason why agricultural is so strong.

    Third, on a high difficulty level focus (which I would even more narrowly define as demi-god, deity and Sid), the UU list totally changes. Ision's list was based on trying to be a generalised list for all difficulty levels. For the hardest games, forget your sea-borne units altogether. I would rank fast UUs occuring in either AA or early MA as top, followed by good land based defence UUs.

    Finally, for now, fast early growth potential is hugely important, and deserves a bonus all of its own!
     
  16. Blackbird_SR-71

    Blackbird_SR-71 Spying from 85,000 ft

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    I think you should put Legionary up in the 1st tiers. Legionaries are one of the most powerful units.
     
  17. scoutsout

    scoutsout Minstrel Boy

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    Let's see... Mayans... Love 'em or leave 'em. Here's the only SG I've played as Mayans.

    My thoughts on the Javelin Thrower: I don't like 'em. Mainly because I've grown fond of archers. :D It seems to me that in upper level games it's tough to do any 'worker farming' in the barb camps with the JTs. By the time you get enough JTs out, much land has been claimed... I basically regard the JT as a Babylonian Bowman at a 50% premium when it comes to real combat. I usually take my fair share of slave workers along the way regardless of the civ I'm playing...

    soo... I'm with you on the JTs, DocT... but I disagree with you on one point: the lack of synergy between Militaristic and Commercial. It seems to me that there is a secondary synergy that comes into play: reduced corruption from the commercial trait enables a militaristic civ to enjoy better production and commerce from those captured cities.

    As for the Agricultural trait... I personally think the Ag trait in C3C is akin to the Industrious trait was in Vanilla; aguably the most powerful trait. If the industrious trait hadn't been toned down in C3C the Maya might very well be the "killer civ".
     
  18. SJ Frank

    SJ Frank Spamalot Co-court

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    To recap some of the things that I've read in this thread:

    - give AGR an extra point:
    Sumeria, Inca, Maya, Netherlands, Celts, Aztecs, Iroquois each gets an extra point.

    - Remove the MP bonus point:
    Sumeria, Carthage, Zulu, Aztecs, Greece each has 1 point removed.

    - Remove some of the COM related synergy points (with EXP, MIL and AGR):
    Rome, Iroquois, Hittites, each has 1 point removed.

    - Raise the Javelin Thrower 1 tier
    Mayans receive 1 extra point

    [edit] the numbers on Inca is wrong?

    The final result, does it look more agreeable?

    First tier Civs: (score in brackets)

    - Celts (10)
    - Greece (9)
    - Iroquois (9)
    - Byzantium (8)
    - China (8)
    - France (8)
    - Sumeria (8)
    - Netherlands (8)
    - England (7) <-- stays at the top tier due to later GA

    Second tier Civs:

    - Rome (7) <-- moved down a tier
    - Aztecs (7)
    - Maya (6) <-- moved up a tier
    - Arabs (6)
    - Carthage (5)
    - Scandinavia (5)
    - Japan (5)
    - India (5)
    - Spain (5)
    - Ottomans (5)
    - Korea (5) <-- moved up a tier
    - Persia (5) <-- stays at this tier because its UU could trigger GA at early MA

    Third tier Civs:

    - Babylon (5)
    - Hittites (5)
    - Inca (4) <-- somebody check the spread sheet for me please
    - America (4)
    - Germany (4)
    - Egypt (4)
    - Russia (4)
    - Mongols (2)

    Bottom Civ:

    - Zulu (1) <-- moved down a tier, poor Zulus :mischief:
    - Portugal (1) <-- I personally believe that the Carrack is the worst UU in the game, if that's the case, then Portugal would end up with a score of (0) :p
     
  19. punkbass2000

    punkbass2000 Des An artiste

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    You changed the tier sizes...

    I like Rome's fall, but I think the Incas are too high up now.
     
  20. SJ Frank

    SJ Frank Spamalot Co-court

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    Right, I edited the post to even up the tiers a bit.

    Now, how exactly did Inca end up with 6 points? I have no idea, must have counted wrong. (Actually, I didn't count, I just took Doc's numbers and added and subtracted from them) I can't read excel docs, can some one please check on Doc's original excel spread sheet to make sure that the number for Inca is correst.

    As far as I could tell, Inca should have:

    Trait Synergy +2
    UU -1
    UU/Trait synergy +1
    AGR + 2
    ================
    Total : +4

    Did I miss something?
     

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