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Silver - Why found only in Polar Regions?

R82

Chieftain
Joined
Dec 20, 2019
Messages
65
Non-gameplay-related question: does anyone find it weird that, at least with the standard map generator, silver in Civ 4 is usually found in the polar regions? In real life, the two places that I think of when I think of silver mining are Nevada and Potosí, neither of which comes across as polar to me.

Moderator Action: Started new thread for this topic. Cheers-lymond
 
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Presumably it's a balance decision. Something to make the otherwise poor and unprofitable tundra regions more rewarding to settle.

As a side effect, silver seems to be rarer than gold on most maps. If William Jennings Bryan lived in a Civiverse, he would say you shall not crucify man upon a cross of silver.
 
It's annoying. A good number of (Standard-sized) Pangaea maps won't have Silver at all because your landmass(es) don't have enough ice and tundra - although I don't think I've seen that problem with Deer and Fur.
 
Balance. All 3 crazy high commerce early game mining resources (4-8 commerce available at literally one of the first-tier techs of the ancient era) have some sort of terrain debuff if they're not in a civ's BFC (or BFC + 1 ring). Silver spawns on tundra, gems in jungle, and gold very frequently (though not always IIRC) on desert hills. Calendar resources don't have this penalty because frankly they mostly suck and are only available like 75-100 turns after the start of the game.
 
There's nothing like hitting the silver-pop jackpot on a riverside grassland hill in your bureaucracy capital! I mean gold and gems are usually plentiful, but silver - oh baby :woohoo:
 
Balance. All 3 crazy high commerce early game mining resources (4-8 commerce available at literally one of the first-tier techs of the ancient era) have some sort of terrain debuff if they're not in a civ's BFC (or BFC + 1 ring). Silver spawns on tundra, gems in jungle, and gold very frequently (though not always IIRC) on desert hills. Calendar resources don't have this penalty because frankly they mostly suck and are only available like 75-100 turns after the start of the game.
You're mostly right about the Mining luxuries - it's 5-7 commerce (not counting rivers) and Gold can spawn on Plains hills outside of a BFC. No argument from me there.

It's more that sometimes you just don't get Silver anywhere on the map, but you usually have enough Jungle and Desert to ensure that Gems and Gold show up somewhere, at least. (Irrational of me, I know.)
 
Get Civ 5 if you want more "goodies" resource tiles. WAY more in the newer game. And they stopped the quirk about silver in polar regions. I think furs are only placed there.
 
:cowboy: I looove polar silver as it truly rewards N-S direction empires vs W-E direction ones. Makes one want to do more "Nordic" ("Southic") warfare :viking:
 
:cowboy: I looove polar silver as it truly rewards N-S direction empires vs W-E direction ones. Makes one want to do more "Nordic" ("Southic") warfare :viking:

Problem is, most polar Silver spots have little or no food... unless you are on the coast with Crab, another resource that seems to gravitate to the poles. Without food, I just settle the one Silver for the :) bonus.
 
Again with a nod to Floyd: Civ 5 has way more goodies including fish and other sea resources. ALSO: you can irrigate any tundra next to a fresh water source.

When I played Civ 4, I always considered those "debuff" resources to be items that would have to be developed later in the game.
 
ALSO: you can irrigate any tundra next to a fresh water source.
The same is true in Civ IV, you can farm/cottage tundra tiles that have Fresh Water. Though considering the base yield is only 1:food:1:commerce: for a riverside tundra it's not something you're likely to do until later in the game.
 
Well, in that respect you might like Civ 4 better than Civ 3. IIRC, in the latter, you could mine plains and even grasslands -- the latter was necessary when the "clever" map generator gave you a starting city totally surrounded with grasslands (e.g., India).
 
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