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SirPleb, Going for Sid

Discussion in 'Civ3 - Hall of Fame Discussion' started by SirPleb, Mar 10, 2004.

  1. Moonsinger

    Moonsinger Settler Retired Moderator

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    That's news to me! Great discovery, SirPleb!:)


    That's also news to me!:) It seems that the rule of the game has changed quite a bit there in C3C. Although I have never mobilized before, but I have tested it out a little bit last year in PTW. Military buildings would get shield bonus. Most importantly, when I prebuild military units then switch them to building improvement, they would subtract (or take back) all the shield bonus that were added by mobilization. I thought that was very smart of them (I mean the programmers) to have covered all those grounds.

    Anyway, enough about my nonsense! Great story, SirPleb!:goodjob: You aren't just a world-class player, but an excellent story teller as well.
     
  2. thefrenchzulu

    thefrenchzulu Chieftain

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    I've noticed the same when switching between military and non military units. I also lost the shield production. Further, artillery and canons seems to be non-military units? Ok, the good thing about this is that your military advisor probably doesn't take artillery into account when comparing relative strengths. (Could see that using spies.) The bad thing is that I tend to build my arillery latter in the game since the increase in upgrade costs. Personally I think that your few hundred canons will swing the fight your way easily.

    Can't wait to hear who has rubber and who not. :)

    Once again, this is an absolute great game and a brilliant story. I can't wait for the next post.
     
  3. El Loco

    El Loco Chieftain

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    Sir Pleb, thanks for taking the time to write this story, not only does it take my mind away from my studies but it entertains me. I would also like to congratulate you on your brilliant and smashing victories and wish you the best of luck!
    By the way, I am leaving tonight (going to London on vacation), and the only thing I will miss are your wonderful stories.
     
  4. El Loco

    El Loco Chieftain

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    Sir Pleb, I forgot to mention it but what's your score so far?
     
  5. SirPleb

    SirPleb Shaken, not stirred.

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    My score at 1255AD is 8924, increased 145 from the turn before. Not great for this date with a *8 multiplier. When I started I was hoping to break 70K but that's not looking likely at this point. I'm not sure how soon I can get on the fast curve and how quickly the curve will rise...
     
  6. akots

    akots Poet

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    Wanted to ask two questions:

    1) In retrospect, would not it be more useful to build more bombard units like catapults and cannons? Seems like this might have yielded more leaders while defending against Shaka's advancing SOD's. However, you conquest of Zulu is indeed very fast and the benefit of artillery at this stage may be small. It even may slow down the advance.

    2) Is there a possibility to get to transport by making gpt deals and breaking them on the same turn? If these other civilizations are scheduled to be taken out soon, there is little point in keeping the reputation clean. This seems to be exploitive but not more than other things. And Sid level justifies it IMO.

    Overall, this thread (as many other of your posts) is a must-read for every Civ player who wants to improve the skill!
     
  7. SirPleb

    SirPleb Shaken, not stirred.

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    I think you are right. If I'd built some Cannons sooner I'd have done better against the Zulu SODs. The damage done by the Cannons would have resulted in more of my units winning without losing HPs and thus they'd be able to attack more often. (Less time healing.)

    I'm not sure how far ahead the others are in tech. I could get at least two techs closer to Transports this way, maybe more. But I'm going to try without doing this. I feel like I've used up my quota of questionable techniques by stacking the deck with the map parameters and pulling the tricks with the Great Library :)
     
  8. Moonsinger

    Moonsinger Settler Retired Moderator

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    SirPleb,

    I'm just curious...how long does it take the AIs to move on your 1GHz machine (IIRC, your machine is Win2K @ 1Ghz) on Sid? Do you turn off all animation? Thanks!:)
     
  9. superslug

    superslug Still hatin' on Khan Moderator Hall of Fame Staff

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    SirPleb, I'm also curious about something. Do you practice any form of meditation? No, seriously. The amount of patience, discipline and attention to detail while seeing the forest for the trees in a game like this blows my Monarch game out of the water (mentally speaking) and my game is giving me migraines...
     
  10. thefrenchzulu

    thefrenchzulu Chieftain

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    SirPleb, I've also got something to ask.

    1. How do you keep record of your game? Units killed, lost etc?
    2. Just how long does it take between turns? I'm playing my first Sid game now and its only 700AD. I take a smoke and coffee break between turns which is taking more than 5 minutes currently! Every time I raise a city, I can take a break. Btw I also play on a 1Ghz PC and it's far to slow.

    Btw, I now know what you meant with stacks of AI. I thought I would try a HOF attempt, but now I'm just trying to win. Apart from popping a great leader with the discovery of writing, it's been an uphill battle all the way!
     
  11. SirPleb

    SirPleb Shaken, not stirred.

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    At the slowest stage, when the Zulu were at full strength, it was taking a bit over five minutes for the AI moves. The inter-turn time doesn't include much time handling my workers because they're not automated.

    Yup, I'm playing under Win2K on a 1GHz machine (notebook) with 512Mb. I suspect that lots of ram helps a fair bit with CivIII.

    I keep most animation on because I want to see some of the AI moves, especially if anyone moves units into my area. But I use the shift key a lot inter-turn, holding it down most of the time, taking my finger off during sequences which seem to be of interest. I turn battle animations off during the bombardment phases of my turns, turn it on again afterward.
     
  12. SirPleb

    SirPleb Shaken, not stirred.

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    No, meditation would probably reduce my stress level. I run at a higher clock speed when I'm stressed :)

    Seriously, that's pretty much true. I do however find that long showers are very useful to me, I sort of meditate during that part of my day. And if I haven't got a tricky real life project on the go then that time is often used free wheeling around my current Civ thoughts :)
     
  13. SirPleb

    SirPleb Shaken, not stirred.

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    My system changes a bit from game to game, depending on how much detail I'm recording. During the intense fighting in this game I kept an editor window open (notepad would work fine I think; as a developer with a variety of needs for a text editor I've been using UltraEdit for a while now and quite like it) and flipped (alt-tab) to it every few fights to note results. I keep a window open in my editor which looks like this:
    Code:
                1234567890 1234567890 1234567890 1234567890 1234567890
    win:        .......... .......... .......
    lose:       ---
    elite wins: xxxxxxxxxx xxx
    After each elite fight I alt-tab to the above and add a "-" if lost or a "." and a "x" if won. If I get a leader then I note that in my text log (another window in my text editor) and clear the "x"s line. For veteran or army fights I count wins in my head until I lose or my sequence of veteran fights ends, then alt-tab and add the appropriate number of "."s and a "-" if I ended the sequence with a loss. At end of turn I count the . and - entries, note them in my log file, and clear them in the above temp file. Then on to the next turn.

    See my reply to Moonsinger above. Sounds like you are at the stage I was in my war with the Zulu. It has gotten a bit faster after I knocked them down to a small size. Razing cities takes a long time for me too. I suspect there is some massive route table recalculation happening for everyone when that happens. I don't know, just speculating. But it sure is slow.

    Good luck on your Sid game! It sure is a new experience :lol:
     
  14. Offa

    Offa Bretwalda

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    Superb game and very instructive as always. It almost makes me want to try Sid again, although the idea of warring against such opposition is not appealing. I can confirm from my previous attempt that even ordinary players like myself can build the Great Library on Sid, so this looks like the way to go. This business of giving it away before education is very clever though, and seems very strong. Do you think it should be banned?
     
  15. SirPleb

    SirPleb Shaken, not stirred.

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    I'm not sure. In many games it seems counter-productive to me - at saner difficulty levels it is generally possible to research with or ahead of the AIs by the late Middle Ages, so waiting for the AIs to pass that point and then taking the Great Library would result in slower progress :)

    Still, it seems overpowering and doesn't make sense. My preference would be that the game change to never give any tech from the Great Library which depends on the tech which disables the Great Library. I.e. with the standard tech tree, never learn anything which has Education as a prerequisite. That would exclude the upper branch of the Middle Ages and would of course exclude anything beyond the Middle Ages.
     
  16. SirPleb

    SirPleb Shaken, not stirred.

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    Consolidation and Learning Replaceable Parts

    After making peace with Zululand and demobilizing, in 1255AD, I began a period of growth and consolidation. I was still involved in a number of wars but they were not intense.

    In 1265AD I finished driving America off my land. I declared war on the Mongols and drove them off too, razing two cities:



    The Inca had a few cities in my area and I wanted them :) I also wanted to slow the Inca development, they were becoming too strong. But I would not be ready to invade the Inca homeland for some time. I wanted to remain focused on consolidating the homeland for score. So in 1275AD I bought an MPP from China, traded Aztecs Communism for an MPP and a luxury, then told the Inca to leave my lands. They declared war resulting in a nice happiness boost.

    I paid the Zulu for an alliance against Inca. I hoped that someone would eliminate the Zulu - they were ahead in tech and I wanted to remove the possibility of those techs being traded around.

    I destroyed the Inca troops wandering through my lands. Since China had MPP with Inca as well as with me I didn't attack the Inca cities. Instead I surrounded them and ended my turn. I had enough armies to handle that, an amusing sight:



    The Inca bombarded my coast so the Aztecs and China lept to my defense, declaring war on Inca. And the same happened with America (I hadn't been able to make peace yet) - she bombarded my coast and Aztecs and China declared war on her. Next turn I immediately took the Inca cities in my area of course.

    In 1280AD the Zulu attacked China and because of my MPP with China I was at war with Zulu again, breaking my peace agreement with her. Oh well, it wasn't intentional on my part.

    In 1290AD my solitary scientist learned Electricity. I began serious research at last. I wanted Replaceable Parts! Researching it was expected to take 14 turns, ouch.

    I sent a small invasion force to visit the last remaining Zulu town, on an island just off my coast. I took the town but the Zulu remained in the game, they have a settler somewhere.

    At 1330AD I'd filled in settlements and spread my borders to be just 60 tiles from Domination. I'm still managing all workers manually and turns are now taking a very long time. (And real life keeps trying to interrupt :) ) But the end of improving the land is in sight now.

    In 1340AD I learned Replaceable Parts. I'd improved my research rate a bit by building libraries and universities and by assigning scientists in towns which had reached their growth limit.

    I've immediately reassigned many citizens to be Civil Engineers. They'll help with the task of building aqueducts, marketplaces, and harbors in corrupt regions.

    Learning Replaceable Parts had been a high priority because it enabled Civil Engineers. The next steps are not as clear, this is a major decision point.

    Should I switch to Republic now? Finally this seems a viable option. I don't have urgent war priorities for a while - I need transports before I can mount any large scale invasion against a rival. By the time anarchy ends I could make peace with America and Zulu to avoid war weariness. There are a lot of factors affecting this decision:
    o Republic would allow faster research, something I'd really like at this point. And slightly lower corruption would of course be welcome.
    o I'm in a constant cash crunch. There are lots of things I want to rush but not much gold. No gold at all if I research at 70% and use 20% to maintain a good level of happiness.
    o Getting ahead in tech will probably not help the cash crunch problem - for some reason my rivals have had little excess gpt so far.
    o I can probably only gain spending capacity in Republic if I disband some of my forces. At this date I have 554 units. 243 of them are workers and if necessary can be joined to cities, leaving slaves to handle remaining improvements. 18 are obsolete military units which could be disbanded in Republic. But the rest are current units and their numbers will have to grow in future.
    o In a while war weariness will again become an issue in Republic. I think that controlling the Inca, Aztecs, and perhaps even China will require long expensive wars, quickly reaching maximum war weariness.
    o Rushing improvements in corrupt cities will largely be handled by Civil Engineers. Gold will not be as important for this part of the game as it was pre-Conquests.
    o The worst case anarchy time is nine turns. During anarchy I'd lose some population (a bit of starvation plus some missed growth opportunity), I'd lose research time (unless I used scientists at the expense of lost growth) and I'd lose construction time.

    I've decided I won't make the switch. I think I can reach my next major goal (Transports!) at least as quickly in Monarchy. The costs of switching seem likely to outweigh the gain at this time.

    Having made that decision for the current situation I expect I'll stay in Monarchy for the rest of the game. When I reach the next point where it would make sense to reopen the question I don't expect it will matter anymore. Milking builds (aqueducts, marketplaces, harbors) should be done or nearly done by then. So I might as well stay in Monarchy till the end and use MPs to help happiness in a few places.

    I'd hoped to trade Electricity for Medicine by now. But only Zulu and Inca know Medicine. I have nothing to trade Zulu and I wouldn't trade Replaceable Parts to Inca even if we were at peace. So I'm starting research of Medicine, heading for Scientific Method. Better that I learn those two techs and then get two others for free than that I research two other techs and leave the Theory Of Evolution for an AI to build. I've started a ToE prebuild.

    I see just two rubber sources outside my lands! Inca has one of them, America has the other. This presents a good opportunity. I have three Cavalry armies at this point which are small enough to travel by Galleon. I'll send one, with some Infantry and a spare Cavalry to join the army on the other side, to try to reach and control the Incan rubber. I don't have Galleons where I need them for this and don't have gold to rush them, so I've rushed them by disbanding some cannons. If this works, and I get to that rubber before the Inca learn Replaceable Parts (there's little doubt they're currently researching it since they know Electricity), the Inca will be a lot easier to deal with later! There's a good chance that the American rubber supply will remain in America's control - it is on a smallish island which the other Civs are unlikely to invade successfully.

    Inca culture is becoming a major concern. It is at 100378 and increasing by about 900 per turn. I'm not sure whether I have enough time to mount my large invasion. If they mobilize I should be ok. And if I can trade with another rival for at least one tech that will help a lot. But it is worrisome. I'd like to spend some gold on luxuries for happiness (and thus for score) at this point but I don't think I dare - I must research quickly.

    If I get past the Incan threat I should be ok. The Aztecs are much lower in culture, roughly half the Inca. Zulu are nearly as high as Inca but won't be gaining much more culture :lol:

    Perhaps I'll start sending individual Cavalry to visit the Inca lands soon and try for promotions. If I can create a bit of a wedge over there then I might start creating new armies at the warfront and making a dent by razing a wonder city or two before my main forces arrive later on.

    My next priority after the Inca rubber will be the American rubber if it seems in danger of falling into another Civ's hands (America is too weak to present a threat anymore.) If America seems safe I'll go for luxuries. I have just five of my own. China has the only furs in the world, Aztecs the only silks, and Inca the only dyes. My other two Cavalry armies which can travel should be able to take a luxury or two. Starting with the Inca dyes of course :)

    And I'll continue milking in the homeland of course. Settlers, aqueducts, marketplaces, finish improving the land, etc., while I research toward Combustion. So much to do!
     
  17. Drazek

    Drazek Chieftain

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    I agree. But I have done that many times on Deity. When going for conquest/domination, it's still usefull. Usually I'm only out researching AI at IA.

    Well, if you think about it, it might make sense to reach all those technological levels by reading Great Library's books. If you think nowadays about Internet, you definitely reach beyond your tech level if you collect all this information.
     
  18. SirPleb

    SirPleb Shaken, not stirred.

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    Hurrying to Learn Combustion

    Since my last post at 1340AD my priority has been to learn Combustion. Combustion is key to my plan for stopping the Inca before they win the game with a culture victory. With Combustion I can build Transports and that will allow me to invade the Inca homeland with my force of 4-Cavalry armies.

    After learning Replaceable Parts in 1340 I began researching Medicine at the highest rate I could afford, 90% initially.

    As soon as I saw that the Inca had just one rubber source in their north I rushed two Galleons and in 1345AD sent a 3-Cavalry Army in one, three Infantry and a Cavalry (to join the army) in the other. They had to land at separate locations:



    The Inca immediately destroyed the Infantry group, using a number of Cavalry to do so. And destroyed my two Galleons of course. But they did not attack the three Cavalry army. So it continued by itself without having a fourth Cavalry added, pillaging the rubber in 1355AD. My army has remained fortified there since that date. The Inca learned Replaceable Parts in 1370AD but haven't been able to build Infantry :)

    In 1355AD I sent a group of units to take dyes from the Inca, thinking it wouldn't be too hard:



    My initial force consisted of two 3-Cavalry armies, 2 additional Cavalry and 2 Cannons. Next turn the additional Cavalry joined the Armies and one of them began my attack. From this time onward I sent additional units to join my assault force every turn. I sent Cannons, Artillery, Cavalry, and Armies as I produced new ones. Each turn I bombarded the Inca city and attacked with any spare healed armies (always keeping one in reserve to deter counter-attacks.) And each turn I became more nervous as I counted the units I damaged with bombardment. It was not until 1410 that I finally saw a wounded unit as the best defender in Sausa, the Inca dyes city. In the 1410AD turn I wounded 29 Riflemen there with bombardment, killed 4 Riflemen and 3 Guerillas with my armies, and then saw a wounded Rifleman defending the city. There were 36 defenders there at the start of the turn! And in subsequent turns I discovered there were a lot of Cavalry too.

    In 1425AD my bombardment of Sausa resulted in the strongest defender being a wounded one. So I finally began a full scale attack using all the Cavalry I'd brought over as well as my armies. I didn't take the city but I did kill 30 Riflemen, at a cost of 12 Cavalry. Then a turn of healing, then in 1435AD I destroyed 15 Cavalry defenders. In 1440AD my bombardment finally breached the city, redlining all defenders and then reducing the population to 6. And in 1445AD I finally captured Sausa. Right, that wasn't too hard, it only took 18 turns :lol:

    I replaced Sausa with a new town and rushed a harbor there by disbanding some Cannons. Then a surprising thing in 1450AD - the Inca destroyed my new town! I'd moved in a fully healed 16HP 4-Cavalry army and fortified it there. Until this time the Inca had never attacked even a 12HP 3-Cavalry army. For some reason this was different. They threw Cavalry at my army and destroyed it.

    I guess the AI is more strongly motivated to attack with poor odds when attacking a town? I don't know. But I won't try settling another town in the Inca lands while they remain strong. I'll just raze cities without replacing them. And I won't get dyes for some time yet.

    During the long attempt to get dyes I became more and more nervous about the possibility of losing the game - Incan culture is growing rapidly, on track to win at about 1595AD. If the Inca have around 40 units in every city, stopping them before that date might not be possible. And I expect they do have that many, I doubt they defended their dyes city especially strongly.

    As I got more nervous I applied more effort to research - my armies must begin their invasion as soon as possible.

    In 1370AD I reassigned a number of Civil Engineers to be Scientists so that Medicine would be learned in 1375AD. I left those specialists as Scientists and learned Scientific Method in 1415AD (8 turns.) I'd hoped that the Aztecs or China would have Industrialization by this date so that I could trade them for it and then perhaps trade Zulu for another tech. Nope, they didn't learn it. So I traded Zulu Scientific Method for Industrialization and flipped my prebuild to Theory of Evolution.

    In 1420AD I learned The Corporation and Steel from ToE. Choosing Steel as my second free tech was a gamble with good potential and only a small downside. I knew the Zulu had The Corporation but didn't know whether they had Steel and/or Refining. Refining is the slightly more expensive tech of these two and therefore better to take for free. But researching it is highly preferred over Steel by the AIs. So I gambled that the Zulu might know Refining but not Steel and that I might pick up another tech in trade as a result.

    The gamble partly worked. The Zulu did know Refining and didn't know Steel. But they wouldn't trade. I reassigned most of my remaining Civil Engineers to be Scientists, to learn Refining in five turns. After three turns the Zulu were willing to trade and I got Refining that way in 1435AD.

    Then Combustion of course. With the continued help of many Scientists I've learned it at 1460AD, which is my current game date. I'll stop research now except for one scientist working on Flight. I'll reassign all other scientists to produce shields or gold and will use all available income to assist in the war on the Inca.

    My 4-Cavalry armies will invade as quickly as I can provide Transports for them. I'm feeling better about my chances now - I've managed to hurry my research a fair bit and still have 27 turns before the Inca will win by culture if they continue unchecked. I'm very glad that they still don't have Infantry! If my armies can raze a few cities quickly then I'll start gaining time - their culture growth will slow down a bit with each city I raze.

    Milking

    As well as learning Combustion and attempting to claim dyes, I've been working on increasing score during this phase.

    I traded to get silks from the Aztecs and furs from China, and to ally both of them against the Inca.

    In 1380AD most of my territory was fully improved. All tiles which weren't finished had workers on them. I started taking workers off duty. At this point I had 245 native workers and about 600 foreign workers.

    I fortified most of the workers as they finished their final tasks, saving them to join cities later on. I haven't prioritized settler production. I did nonetheless produce about 20 settlers during this phase and they've founded new towns, filling in claimed but unworked land. A few workers join each new town as it is settled. I've only used Arabians for this so far - they're safe because their Civ is out of the game.

    I don't have many Cannons left. During this phase I disbanded most of them to hurry various bits of urgent production. (I had no gold to spare because of my emphasis on research.) They've been especially useful in hurrying Galleons. I've built some Artillery to replace the Cannons.

    Civil Engineers have been tremendously useful in hurrying production, even though I didn't use them to the fullest extent possible. (Research became a higher priority as I became more worried.) I review all cities at the end of each turn and apply the following rule of thumb: Every unhappy citizen in a corrupt city is reassigned to be a Civil Engineer. With this rule the Civil Engineers increase per-turn score while they're working. Corrupt towns build Aqueducts remarkably quickly and Marketplaces not long after. At the cost of additional micromanagement Civil Engineers can give a milked game a big boost, completing improvements much faster than could be done by rushing with gold.

    At 1460AD my score is 16,839. In addition to the units shown in the picture below I have 40 Armies and 24 Knights which are in 6 of those armies.



    Despite my huge lead in territory, my forces shown above are considered weak compared with China. And the powergraph shows China as weaker than the Aztecs and a bit less than 1/2 the power of the Inca. :eek:
     
  19. superslug

    superslug Still hatin' on Khan Moderator Hall of Fame Staff

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    You?! Lose?!!! :eek: :eek: :eek: :eek: :eek: You cannot allow this to happen...the very fabric of space-time will rupture. :rolleyes: :D :(

    One of the major decisions left in my game is whether or not switch to Democracy for the milk phase. Seeing you post this hardens my choice. Of course your rule of thumb wouldn't absolutley apply to my game. With you being on Sid you start with citizens less content and it seems you have less luxuries than do I.
     
  20. Gogf

    Gogf Indescribable

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    1. Very, very good job so far! You're doing amazingly!

    Wouldn't a cavalry army be a 6.3.4 unit? Why such a bonus, and why the similar bonus for knight armies?
     

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