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Sisiutil & Lord Parkin (Multiplayer Team Game)

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Strategy & Tips' started by Lord Parkin, Jul 21, 2008.

  1. Lord Parkin

    Lord Parkin aka emperor

    Joined:
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    6,374
    Location:
    New Zealand
    Multiplayer Team Game:
    Sisiutil (Augustus) and Lord Parkin (Darius)


    Session I: 4000 BC - 2300 BC
    Session II: 2300 BC - 245 BC
    Session III: 245 BC - 145 AD
    Session IV: 145 AD - 310 AD
    Session V: 310 AD - 580 AD
    Session VI: 580 AD - 1270 AD
    Session VII: 1270 AD - 1425 AD
    Session VIII: 1425 AD - 1605 AD
    Session IX: 1605 AD - 1718 AD
    Session X: 1718 AD - 1786 AD
    Session XI: 1786 AD - 1804 AD
    Session XII: 1804 AD - 1816 AD
    Session XIII: 1816 AD - 1832 AD
    Session XIV: 1832 AD - 1844 AD
    Session XV: 1844 AD - 1856 AD
    Session XVI: 1856 AD - 1860 AD
    Final Savegame (1860 AD)

    I started this game with Sisiutil yesterday, and figured that it might be nice to put it up in the Strategy & Tips section to allow interested players to see what we're doing (and, of course, to get any useful input you might have to give!). Many of you are probably already familiar with Sisiutil's All Leaders Challenge games. (If you are not then I strongly recommend you look at them, as they are great reads and provide valuable insights into how to improve your game.) I'm loosely basing the structure of my write-up here on Sisiutil's own excellent write-ups, although I can't promise to have quite the same way with words that he does. ;)

    Since the game is already underway, the early game will probably be given a fairly short shift in the write-up, since I want to get this up to date as soon as possible. We're playing fairly regularly at the moment, so the game will probably tend to move forward daily (or thereabouts).

    The game was started on the Beyond the Sword expansion pack, with the latest patch (3.17) and no unofficial patches. We chose a huge Tectonics 60% water map and set 16 random AI civilizations, in addition to our own 2 civilizations (for a total of 18 civilizations). We chose the speed to be Epic to allow for units to move large distances without becoming obsolete. The difficulty level was set to Monarch mostly to compensate for the multiplied advantages that AI teams get on high difficulty levels. (Both myself and Sisiutil are competent Emperor level players in single player.) We selected Choose Religions for a bit of variety, and No Vassal States so that complete conquering of a nation is necessary.



    One thing I should point out about the early game screenshots is that I've had to take them myself by going back to old savegames - hence you might notice that Sisiutil's civ is (incorrectly) listed as an AI in some screenshots. This minor issue will disappear from the screenshots once I get up to the present state of the game. :)

    Here are the starting locations that we each recieved:





    As Darius, my starting location naturally pointed towards a Great Person farm. Sisiutil's start as Augustus had forests aplenty, and looked to have at least one strategic resource in store for the future.
     
  2. Lord Parkin

    Lord Parkin aka emperor

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    Location:
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    Session I: 4000 BC - 2300 BC

    Due to us having selected Choose Religions for this game, the first two religions to be founded happened to be Christianity and Islam. (They were followed, in order, by Taoism, Hinduism and Buddhism later.) We soon met our nearest neighbour, Suryavarman II, who was teamed with Sitting Bull.



    Stonehenge was built in 2525 BC (by Germany, as we later found out), then later the Great Wall (by Native America), the Oracle (by an unknown civilization), and the Great Lighthouse (by Germany again). In 2300 BC, here's what our respective empires looked like:





    We certainly seemed to have been blessed with a large amount (and variety) of resources on our small chunk of land. Sisiutil made a dotmap of future city sites (which, apart from a rearrangement due to a barbarian city, we kept to for the rest of the early game).

     
  3. Lord Parkin

    Lord Parkin aka emperor

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    Location:
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    Session II: 2300 BC - 245 BC

    We decided early on that we wanted to make a bid for the Pyramids, due to the lack of happiness resources available before Calendar. The lack of Stone was a bit of a problem, but luckily Sisiutil's Industrious trait would help a lot, and Rome had a lot of forests to chop. We managed to get the Pyramids (our first wonder!) completed in 1125 BC due to a team effort of our combined Workers chopping away furiously. We both adopted Representation, and our happiness worries went away just like that.

    Around the same time, Sitting Bull got a Great Spy from his Great Wall, and used it... for a Golden Age. In 950 BC. :lol: Gotta love that AI. ;)

    Other Great People (a Prophet and Scientist) were born in faraway lands. We met two new teams, Willem/Huayna and Mansa/Elizabeth. In 575 BC Sisiutil captured the barbarian city of Assyrian and gifted it to me (I could better use the dyes due to my Financial trait, plus I was running short on expansion room).

    I managed to build the Temple of Artemis in 365 BC (in hindsight, it may have been better outside my capital to avoid GP point pollution, but never mind). The Colossus was built by an unknown civilization shortly after, and then in 245 BC Sisiutil completed his second wonder - the Hanging Gardens. (He was looking to leverage the Great Engineer points, but the population bonus was very nice also.) Slightly ironic that we built two early Stone-requiring wonders without Stone, but then Sisiutil did have that Industrious trait. ;)

    Here are some screenshots of the state of our empires in 245 BC. Note that I fixed the happiness problems in my cities by taking Gems from Sisiutil during that turn (he'd only just got the Hanging Gardens, pushing me into unhappiness that turn).





    And a zoomed-out overview:



    We'd also done some exploring, thanks to signing Open Borders all around, so we knew a bit more about what our continent looked like.



     
  4. Lord Parkin

    Lord Parkin aka emperor

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    Session III: 245 BC - 145 AD

    I decided to make the most of our early grab of Aesthetics and Literature, so I built the Parthenon, Great Library and Statue of Zeus all one after the other. The first two I built for our own benefit, while the Statue of Zeus was really more for the purpose of denial to the AI (it can be an annoying issue to have the doubled war weariness, especially against 2 leaders in a team).

    Meanwhile, three more Great Scientists, a Great Spy and a Great Engineer were born in faraway lands. In 80 BC I generated my first Great Person - a Great Prophet. It was too early for a Golden Age and no decent technologies could be lightbulbed at the time, so I used him as a super-specialist in Persepolis.

    Mansa Musa managed to net a Great Prophet, so built the Islamic Shrine. Around this time we had decided that Christianity was going to be the majority religion on the continent, and that Willem/Huayna would be our main rivals to keep happy, so we decided to switch to Christianity. I converted first, followed by Sisiutil a few turns later.

    In 130 AD, Sisiutil completed the Mausoleum of Maussollos - with Industrious and Marble it was practically a wonder in the bag for him. The next turn, a Great Prophet turned up in a faraway land, while in Sisiutil's lands a Great Engineer was born. We took a break to decide what might be the best use for him, and came up with the Apostolic Palace (or failing that, Notre Dame).

    We also met another team on our continent in 145 AD - Bismarck/Boudica. As it turned out, they were at war with Mansa/Elizabeth, which was interesting to see.



    The state of our empire in 145 AD:



    And the nice little island to the north of me (with Sheep and Crabs):

     
  5. Lord Parkin

    Lord Parkin aka emperor

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    Session IV: 145 AD - 310 AD

    In 190 AD, Mansa/Elizabeth made peace with Bismarck/Boudica - a slight disappointment for us, but we'll hope to see more on that front later. Sisiutil and I were both busy spreading Christianity around our lands, and Willem seemed to be more than willing to help us with several missionaries coming our way from him. In 220 AD, I got my second Great Prophet, and decided to use him to lightbulb Theology so that Sisiutil could use his Great Engineer to build the Apostolic Palace - which he did, in Cumae in 280 AD.

    Well, the good news? The Apostolic Palace grab worked like a charm. The bad news? Every single AI team voted for Willem/Huayna instead of us. :lol: Obviously we need to work on our relations with the AI teams a bit, as we are a little behind Willem/Huayna there. We'll have to hope in the meantime that no resolutions are passed which are too irritating. It's possibly quite a bad time for Willem/Huayna to be in the seat of power, since we are gearing up for a war with Sury during our next session. (Or rather, Sisiutil is doing most all of the military build-up - I'm concentrating on keeping our tech rate afloat. ;) )

    We played to the turn following the Apostolic Palace election results (310 AD), and another distant AI generated a Great Scientist. Here is the state of our empire at the present time:



    Sisiutil's military buildup is shown below. (No Sury, of course we're not planning to attack you! ;) ).



    Incidentally, we've just noticed that Sury has Crossbowmen, so that'll make any war right now a lot tougher. Luckily we have access to War Elephants, which will dull the pain of those nasty crossbows a bit.

    A peek inside Rome and Persepolis, our respective capitals:





    (I wouldn't usually build the Hagia Sophia, but it's a quick build for me, and I could use the Great Engineer points in my Great Person pool.) Note the huge difference in research rates between Sisiutil and I!

    Here's the diplomacy table - four AI teams of two met, four teams yet to meet.



    Our technology compared to the rest of the known world. We're doing reasonably well considering that I'm carrying almost all of the technological weight for both of us. Probably something to do with my insane GNP (nearly twice the nearest rival, as you'll see). ;)



    We have every technology before this point in the tech tree, with the sole exception of Metal Casting.



    The known world at this point:



    The present top five cities - interestingly, four of five located on our continent and amongst civs that we know. Perhaps the other four teams, wherever they are, aren't doing quite so well as us.



    Some various demographics (for Persia):



    Check out the dichotomy in the GNP between Sisiutil and myself. ;)



    There's also a noticeable dichotomy between Sisiutil and myself in Power.



    That's all for now. If you have any comments or suggestions for Sisiutil and/or myself in this game, feel free to post below. Personally, I get the feeling that I haven't expanded enough (my research slider has been healthy at 70% for a while), so I'm planning to get a few more cities set up in our next session, including some on that island to the north (with the Sheep and Crabs). I'm also wondering whether we should hold off on our war with Sury until we can control the Apostolic Palace again... though I'm leaning towards the idea that we should at least go for his easy cities now.

    It'd be great to hear some opinions from some of you lurkers on what the future should hold for the Persian-Roman alliance, though. Do speak up!

    Until next time
    - Lord Parkin :)
     
  6. BCampbell

    BCampbell Chieftain

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    I'm curious as to why you didn't settle your capitol 1E, to get pigs and an additional lake (for early teching), instead of the marble. Is it just the loss of a turn?
     
  7. oyzar

    oyzar Have quit civ/forums

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    Setting the AI to monarch almost feels like cheating... The AI get worse in teams not better... (or rather the humans get much better in teams while the AI doesn't).
     
  8. PaulusIII

    PaulusIII Unholy Warlord

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    You are Persia resp. Rome. Why haven't you attacked anyone yet?

    I doubt that Sury and Bull would've stood a chance if you had attacked.

    Nice economic buildup by Darius.
     
  9. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam Top Logic

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    How do you raise difficulty in MP? Does setting both players to monarch make the AI better/start with correct techs? My LAN games would be more interesting with a semi-competent opponent or two other than my friend - right now it's a noob (aka AI) hunt race, which I usually win as I'm a lot more aggressive.
     
  10. CivCorpse

    CivCorpse Supreme Overlord of All

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    Attack now. Don't worry about the AP. just defy the vote. Sis can tell you alllllllll about that
     
  11. Lord Parkin

    Lord Parkin aka emperor

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    I would rather have had 6 mineable hills + marble than the extra pigs and only 3 mineable hills. I find that a balanced capital (with respect to hammers/food) is better overall than a monster food capital that really lacks on hammers.

    This hasn't been my experience at all. The last teams game that I played (with Roland Johansen - I never did write that one up), we played a teams game on Emperor level. We ended up quite a considerable margin behind the majority of the AI (although most of them were admittedly on a different continent, which always makes it trickier to keep up in tech). That was on the Warlords expansion, too (so we had the happiness penalties to deal with, but apparently the BTS AI are "better" than the Warlords ones).

    We found in that game that although the multipliers for the AI remain at the same percentages as usual, due to the increased research costs for teams, the AI gets even more discounts (in terms of numbers of beakers) in teams on a high difficulty than normal, which fuels their research rate to be even higher. We haven't finished that game yet, and I'm not sure if we would have won it or not - it would have been a close call, at least.

    Hence why I thought that Monarch might be a more reasonable level for us to get into this game. Of course, as it turned out, we didn't get an isolated start, and our lands were unusually bountiful, so we didn't suffer from the same huge happiness issues that Roland and I did in our game. Thus we've managed to do quite well for ourselves. It turns out that we might have been able to raise the bar to Emperor after all, but I only say that in hindsight. Maybe we'll keep it in mind if we do a next game. ;)

    We didn't attack early because (you can't see this in the screenshots I think) Sury settled an early city on a hill directly on Copper, and quickly produced many Axemen and Spearmen. Any attack would have been very costly in terms of units (even Praets), so we decided to wait and build up our economy.

    Also, Sury didn't really start that close to either of us, so his lands were just a little bit too far away for an early rush.

    Setting both players to the same difficulty level in multiplayer is indeed the way that you make the AI more competent. It's fairest to have the human players at the same difficulty level (regardless of which one you pick, Warlord, Prince, Monarch, etc). We found in this game that setting the AI to Monarch has made them reasonably competent at keeping up in tech and soldiers, although bear in mind that we had a Financial civ and a great start location. Monarch might not be quite so easy usually.

    Yes, Sisiutil mentioned that to me while we were playing. I haven't read the entire Lincoln thread, but I'm not sure that defying the AP in our current situation would be so wise. Christianity is now in most of our cities, and the +5 unhappiness would really kill my economy quite quickly.

    I'm personally more in favour of attacking until someone asks us to stop, stopping, then going back and attacking later. But perhaps someone has some better ideas or a different opinion? :)
     
  12. CivCorpse

    CivCorpse Supreme Overlord of All

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    You're going to get the -5's anyway when the AP tries giving back the cities
     
  13. Lord Parkin

    Lord Parkin aka emperor

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    True... I'd forgotten about that. Hmm, it's all very inconvenient. I wish we never built the silly thing (or at least, that we had better relations with the AI). ;)
     
  14. Sisiutil

    Sisiutil All Leader Challenger

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    I just want to point out that I feel my own play in this game has been a little sloppy, because I was focused on learning MP team play. Hence the shocking lack of mature cottages around my capital! :eek: I've been relying on LP's Financial Darius to carry the research load, which he mostly has, but I need to be able to afford my army, too.

    PaulusIII: LP emphasized that he preferred more of a builder game, and if you look at the map, we had a lot of land to develop and no nearby neighbours. Hence the mostly peaceful development. Nevertheless, here, too, I think I was a little sloppy. I'm now about ready to attack Sury with Praets and Catapults, and he has Ballista Elephants and (gasp!) Crossbows. Normally with Rome I would have pushed for a much, much earlier war, but not this time, mainly because of the map, and out of deference to my partner's preference to expand and build at first.

    I commented just recently to LP that while we chose two complimentary leaders and approaches--one economic, the other military--I should have chosen a leader with a later UU. Someone like Tokugawa, for example. Granted we didn't get any use out of Immortals because horses (and potential opponents) were so far away, but having UU from different time periods increases the chances that you'll get some use out of one of them.

    But maybe my sloppy play is also my attempt to compensate for playing against a Monarch-level AI. ;)

    At any rate, it has been fun thus far, and LP is doing an excellent job of the write-ups. :goodjob:
     
  15. CivCorpse

    CivCorpse Supreme Overlord of All

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    A question on team play. Can you gift cities to your team mates? And do gifted units convert to UU's? Gisting swords to Sis seems like an exploit if they do, so that is probably out. I am thinking that Sis takes the cities and only keeps solid production cities. gifting the others to fin/org darius. Darius can then make the occasional gold gift to keep Romes economy afloat.
    I am curious as to why Darious built the great library rather than Augustus. Auggi could build it faster and the forum would boost the GPP from the two scientists.
     
  16. oyzar

    oyzar Have quit civ/forums

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    The AI in bts is easier sure, but the difficulty levels are actually easier due to the AI's getting way less bonuses in BTS...
     
  17. Sisiutil

    Sisiutil All Leader Challenger

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    You can gift cities and units. Haven't tried a Sword->Praet gift yet to see if it works, I imagine it would. I don't think that's as much of an exploit as you do. Yes, we benefit from combined production capacity, but so, potentially, does the AI.

    Your thinking on the cities lines up with ours. Most of the best Fin cities go to Darius to exploit Fin. However, Rome is keeping a couple of those, mainly to have the resources and keep that simple, and also to simplify the whole gifting gold thing--though that is a good idea; LP, we should start doing a bit of that. ;)

    LP/Darius built the GL because his capital is such a natural GP farm, whereas I had no good, obvious GP farm locations that compared. And he had marble.
     
  18. oyzar

    oyzar Have quit civ/forums

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    Gifting a sword it would remain a sword... Gifting units to a charismatic leader it loses expirience but retain any promotions it have.
     
  19. Lord Parkin

    Lord Parkin aka emperor

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    That's very true. Maybe if we play another game like this sometime, we'll have to keep that in mind and play with some even more complimentary leaders. I certainly have some combinations in mind which would be interesting. :)

    Thanks! :goodjob: Glad you're enjoying the game. I've always found playing with human players to be so much more interesting than just playing against the AI.

    That's the general idea of what we have in mind, too.

    Yes, I'd agree with this... the higher difficulty levels are easier in BTS since the AI players get less bonuses (and the human players get fewer penalties). Personally, I think that the high difficulty levels are more fair this way (and, I think, more enjoyable). :)

    At the moment you're the one conquering all the new cities and getting all the gold! :p Seriously though, I'm happy to send gold your way, but I do think that I can still utilize it better with my obscene GNP and research multipliers.

    Yep, precisely. ;)

    Indeed, a gifted Sword remains a Sword... just as a gifted Praet remains a Praet. The only exception, I believe, is an Indian Worker, which becomes a regular Worker under a gift (at least last time I checked) - presumably to avoid multiplayer exploits. (Workers gifted to India stay as normal Workers, too.)

    If a non-Charismatic leader gifts a unit to a Charismatic leader, the unit loses experience (to avoid exploiting promotions). Note however that if a Charismatic leader gifts a unit to a non-Charismatic leader, it gains experience - although not as much as it loses when gifted back to the Charismatic leader. (Perhaps due to a bug with rounding.)

    By the way, I'm working on the write-up for the next installment now - it should be up soon. ;)
     
  20. Munch

    Munch Benevolent Despot

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    Monarch and two very powerful leaders? With a decent start position that isn't hideously overrun with hills/mountains I predict an easy win.
     

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