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[BTS] Shadow Game: Monarch w/ Charlemagne

With 25 HA, that should be more than enough vs archers. I'd go straight away, before even the timid Gandhi gets a little extra defence. Unlikely to need any reinforcements.

I'd go slightly Bombay first - Pillaging iron ASAP on the way there - With no danger of spears holding you up, this should be a comfortable roll-over, After that I'd go Delhi, Pat. Vijay - but doubt it'll make much difference.

I can't see in enough detail re value of citiies, but the main 4 mentioned above look OK, probably would keep. Agra probably not needed at this stage, you can always settle later. But I think with such production available, it's probably just a focus on Guilds and Arabia will fall (Albeit, I'm not sure knights will matter vs Saladin, you have plenty of Jumbos - combined with remaining HAs and a few Cats, it should be easy enough. By the time that's over you'll have Guilds and with what's left I doubt Lizzy will be able to resist either.
yes strike now :goodjob:
Guilds probably too far away unless you get a Gmerchant somehow.

Just amass a huge army (2 huge armies) and take ALL sounds like a reasonable plan.
Remember to send workers with soldiers so you can road and war quicker.

Maybe a demographics screenshot would help evaluate how much ahead you are currently.

Edit: I advise not to be shy with the whip at this point, until you are borderline STRIKING.
Maybe a demographics screenshot

Spoiler Demographics screenie :


Thank you.
1st in hammer (73/52)
1st in food (172/106)
40% of the world power.
>> whip more I think :)
Research does not matter anymore.
just thinking out loud, wanting to understand the demographics:

food/turn -> hammers /turn via whipping + hammers/turn -> units/turn

Research does not matter anymore.
idea being, HA + elephants + catapults are enough to win; stronger units not necessary, since my units/turn will overwhelm the AI?

The worst unit you will face is longbow.
With a couple of promotions on elephants that should not be a problem. And you will lose some ofc. but will have overwhelming numbers.

If the AI got engineering and pikemen, that would change but can they get there in time ? I don't think so.

Edit regarding demographics you got it right.
If you could whip a couple of units this turn (2 pop), then your total production would be approx 120+73 :hammers:, while your food would get decreased by a few.

Whip food neutrals tiles. Make sure to always 2 pop whip unit A > overflow into unit B, rince and repeat.

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Spoiler T131 :

  • Amassed near Bombay
  • India captured barb city Harrian, lol
  • DOW
  • pillaged iron enroute to Bombay
  • captured Bombay
  • razed Harrian
  • razed small new city NW of Delhi
  • Captured Delhi, including pyramids
  • Ghandi will capitulate; should I take anything else from him first?


Spoiler :

Easiest win is probably conquest (this is a pangea right?)
So yeah, capitulate the AIs as they will. You don"t need more cities.

Now you could sweep through India towards England. Stronger opponent ATM I suppose (Oxford lol)

I can see units in production and no waste of beakers. That's very good. :goodjob:
You could soon decide to relax the back cities (build wealth) and focus the army buildup in front cities (Washington, Bombay,). Those appear to have forests so... Chop :D

With Pyramids you might switch to representation (for happiness) or to Police state (chop more units)

Maybe it is time to make 2 armies ? :groucho:

Edit: Looks like the land is slightly under-developped (do you know calendar ?)
It would probably make sense to whip workers > chop all forests asap.

editt: do you have open borders with Arabia ? You could scout their land :satan:.
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@soundjata thanks for the feedback!

probably conquest
conquest for sure

focus the army buildup in front cities
thats a good tip!

you might switch to representation (for happiness) or to Police state (chop more units)
also great, hadn't considered either

2 armies ? :groucho:
already started a second near boston :)

do you know calendar ?
No, and frankly, I'm not sure what to do with all my workers (other than chopping)

open borders with Arabia ?
yes, and England - ready to scout them both
In this case Calendar might become a desirable tech at some point, to increase :) and :commerce:
I don't think you need it (you should win < 15 turns imo) and it should be possible to get via trade or capitulation.

Glad to know you got enough workers!

Crack the :whipped: hotter is all I can suggest now.
Disregard unhappy citizens :o
I'll keep an eye out for Calendar to trade or extort :)
Crack the :whipped: hotter
Not sure why I'm going slower - I'm seeing potential efficiencies, but I'm struggling to care. I think I've been motivated to win, and now I need to find motivation to win more quickly/efficiently, to rise to emperor and further. Maybe its because I'm always playing end of the day, but its like my brain doesn't want to work for it atm :sleep:
Conquest Victory!

Thanks everyone for all your help and great tips, I learned so much! Like for instance, that a little movie plays when you conquest win, with falling chess pieces and bombs :king:

Here's how it went down:
  • India capitulated
  • scouted England and Arabia
  • England was the tougher nut, so I decided to strike Arabia first with my northern army, then march south to England, along with my southern army, closing the pincer
  • worked like a charm
  • then long marched up to Ramses, who made me take every last longbow protected city
  • piled elephant bones to the sky, but got the job done
  • victory turn 175, Augustus Caesar, score 2898

Postgame Analysis
slow morning at work :mischief: so thought I'd review and give props. I read back through the thread, noting when one of you kind souls helped me learn something new. I'm sure there will be mistakes/over-simplifications here; feel free to correct me!

And, thank you all - it's amazing that this community exists, thank you for taking the time to help me learn.


Forum Game Setup - lymond

  • BUG/BULL in custom assets
  • no Locked Modified Assets
  • on Steam, run the beta version
  • include resource bubbles in pics
  • post save game with pics

City Placement - sampsa, lymond, Mr_Trotsky
  • value of gems
  • early trade routes when cities connected by river
  • think less about expanded BFC, focus on getting resources in the inner ring (unless creative)
  • always have a fog-busting warrior before sending a settler
  • food is king

Map reading for information - coanda
  • jungles -> near equator
  • water tiles -> peninsula -> AI won’t have access -> can be exploited later

Scouting - sampsa, coanda, lymond
  • don’t lose the scout
  • keep it in borders after animals
  • finish turns in forests
  • that said, 2nd city placement info is a priority
  • 3rd and further also important, but diminishing priority
  • Scouts can poke forward with one move, then retreat if necessary
  • Scout is a very valuable fog-buster
  • uncover coast to allow more foreign trade routes

Research/Worker Choice - Nick723, Fippy, coanda, Peteyboy
  • High food first in most cases
  • Iron Working almost never a self-research during the expansion phase
  • Jungle tiles treated as dead space till later
  • Maths is nice if early and still lots of forests
  • Currency is great, wealth-building, trade for gold
  • in peaceful games, normally CoL -> CS -> Paper -> Education OR Aesthetics -> Literature -> Music & Philosophy for GA/GP routes
  • in military games, Feudalism is priority for chain-capitulation

Building choices - Peteyboy, Fippy, sampsa, lymond, Mr_Trotsky
  • before building settlers, consider number of workable tiles in capital/existing cities, and their value
  • also consider food availability in the next city - can it be fed immediately?
  • Would an additional worker help the next city become productive faster?
  • monuments are often over-valued - those hammers are needed elsewhere
  • don’t start with worker or settler in new cities, they can be chopped/whipped
  • warrior first usually, while city grows
  • granaries in new cities a priority

Fogbusting - coanda
  • Barbs cannot spawn anywhere visible to a player
  • nor within a 5x5 box of a unit, including the shroud

Military Conquest - coanda, lymond, sampsa, Mr_Trotsky, Peteyboy, Fippy, soundjata

  • preferred units in different tech phases:
    • axes/chariots
    • horse archers
    • elephants/catapults, knights for mop-up
    • cuirassiers
    • cannons
  • have enough commerce to support the war
  • scout the target - how many units, and what kind? what techs can they research? Access to metal?
  • commit - beeline the tech, whip/chop a smashing force for a fast knockout blow
  • plan the approach - which city first? how many turns away? any resources to pillage that would cripple - metal/horses/other?
  • use workers with armies to road to enemy
  • only some units need higher experience from barracks, etc - to hit first
  • 0xp units will level fast, taking out the wounded
  • avoid promoting until attacking or being attacked - best chance for appropriate promotion
  • don’t get bogged down - if momentum stalls, ceasefire or peace out
  • ceasefire resets war success(useful for extorting more from peace deals) but gets opponent out of war mode
  • raze crap cities - cities that never reach 2nd pop auto-raze
  • GGs - usually either a super-medic or a warleader, depending on the war needs; only rarely would any GG be settled
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"Knights" as a military phase is usually just for mop-up. If you don't have a commanding production advantage and aren't committed to all-out war, once AIs start getting lots of longbows and pikes it's more common to peacefully tech your way straight to Cuirassiers. Or potentially cannons, if you're far behind in tech; their collateral damage can help offset fighting enemy units that are much more advanced than yours, although wars will be more costly and less speedy than if you can just get Cuirassiers in reasonable time and go on the offensive with them.
One of the best shadow game threads ever posted :thumbsup:
High praise from the Queen :) I've poured over your stickied beginner's post in the last years as I've gotten back into Civ4 - still absorbing and learning to apply - such a great resource.

"Knights" as a military phase is usually just for mop-up
thanks for the correction - I'll edit the phases, with knights at the tail end of the elephants/catapults phase, and adding Cuirassiers and Cannons as separate later phases.
High praise from the Queen :) .
She is most def the :queen:! :)

Awesome game! Great detail and way to stick with it, and us. We look forward to another round, especially when we can access saves and maybe play along with ya. I recommend moving up to at least emperor for the next bout.
thanks lymond! I'll definitely be back with an Emperor game, changes made so yall can play along. But first, want to hone my Monarch game - lot of fundamentals to shore up before moving on. Peteyboy noted the way he practiced in his recent thread - I'll do the same.
The difference between Emp and Imm isn't that big, so maybe you feel like trying Imm next :)
There are some advantages, mainly that you avoid a possible easy ending and see more of what matters later in the game.
And there will be more available for tech trading..you can learn faster, but dunno if that's your goal.
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