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Sullla's AI Survivor Season Seven - Playoff Game 3 Thread

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Jul 3, 2021
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Playoffs conclude Friday, July 14th on Twitch at noon EDT, 5pm BST! And a happy national holiday to all those celebrating Bastille Day in France and around the world :king:

You can catch the second Playoff Game on Twitch.

Finally a bit of relief from the bizarre matchups we have seen in the Playoffs! Heroes Darius and Gandhi face off against Villains Alexander, Pacal, and Qin Shi Huang, with Saladin a neutral bystander who will likely join the dark side. Northern leaders Gandhi, Pacal, and Saladin all start with Mysticism. While one may think Pacal would just run over Gandhi, their performance in the opening rounds would suggest otherwise.

Playoff Game 3 roster.png


Watch the preview here, read up on the game here, and make your predictions here. All are welcome to discuss the game in this thread and follow along for what will hopefully continue to be a dynamic and entertaining season!

And if one contest just isn't enough, check out parallel odds from @Fippy!
 
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I was going to say something RE: Cultural victories so far and literally Gandhi being in this game...but than I remembered the initial opening round game, and now I'm curious if Gandhi Domination is a likely outcome :lol:.
 
I like Darius here
- very nice start for his techs
- Gandhi should draw a lot of the aggro

Alex to either bash his head into his protective neighbours or embark on some long distance attempt.

Saladin gets 2nd, Gandhi FTD.
 
Great setup here :)

I like Alex´ land (strong capital - juicy spots close like gold & sheep - plains cow near which always counts for something), but his starting techs are always a burden.
His neighbors can become a problem as @Nick723 already mentioned.

Darius could do well or mess up the settling phase again like he often does, then get into problems with Qin..wonderbag.

Sal potentially has loads of space, and he's not a pushover at all..wouldn't count him out here.

Gandhi, i don't like his start at all. All his worker can do early is building mines, but they are all under forest.
Limited space - Pacal very close - jungle near..has FTD written all over him imo.

Qin, plains hill start (counts for something like it does for us ;))
High :hammers: potential everywhere around him. Lacks strong special tiles like gold or ivory.
He's very difficult to rate for me on this map.

Pacal, i don't love the idea of him moving SW first (jungle but lots of resis which they always go for).
Similar trap SE. No river thru his capital..he might get less value from FIN than normal.
No copper but horsies so he will build many chariots (and they stink).
Tough AIs around him other than Gandhi. Not my favorite here.
 
On second glance, all the AI seem to have decent potential to expand. Gandhi probably has the worst start with no first ring food, high potential of being forward settled by Pacal, and high potential of being boxed in by Qin Shi Huang and Darius. Seems like the initial flashpoints will be Darius-Qin Shi Huang, Alexander-Saladin, and Villains-Gandhi. If lakes/inland seas work like coasts, it appears that if Pacal settles his second city on the lake and found a religion there, Alexander and Qin Shi Huang could pick it up quickly. Other than that, not totally clear to me how the map structures religious spread.
 
I like Darius here - he has good land and I think his peacenik neighbors can meatshield for him long enough for him to have rifles and machine guns by the time Alex and Sal come knocking with knights.

Seems kinda like playoff game 1, you got 4 leaders who just want to grill build up and 2 leaders who will want to war. The difference is there isn't probably going to be as much unity amongst the borings this time around.
 
I hate both Gandhi and Pacal very much on this map. So unfair for them. Maybe Pacal cries for a runner up and somewhat succeeds if Qin manages a domination victory. Otherwise no. He is bad at conquering too, so its not clear all India will become Mayas in the long run.

Loser AIs here are Gandhi,Darius and Alex
Better AIs here are Pacal,Saladin,Qin

Loser starts are Gandhi and Pacal.

I am hoping Alex wouldn't attack Qin, that would be the worst diplomatic move ever, really helping Darius. I think I will pick only Saladin or Qin to win. Alex can't ruin both of their games at once. And after his first neighbour war he will likely plot againt Gandhi or Darius. Runner up is again I will pick Saladin,Pacal or Qin simply because I hate luckster Alex and Darius. I want them fail.

What is so annoying here is Barbs, and how they destroyed Kublai last game, thanks to his awful only west settling path. Where will they appear here?
 
Some spoiler as I turn in my Chinese victory.
Spoiler prediction :

Darius %62 win as of 42 votes,26 picked Darius to win and none for Saladin yet! 26 Darius+8 Pacal +6 Qin+ 2 Alex. Wasn't expecting that.
 
I have no idea I haven't made one. I just autolayed only one time in that championship map made by Commodore and voted for the first outcome. Qin won, Pacal was second. Saladin was third. Gandhi was FTD, and Darius died later too.

I just thought rest of the world does not stalemate, Gandhi dies, Darius stays with his own land while someone claims more of India, and maybe one more of them dies so they become bigger and take down Darius later then end up as winner,runner up. I can't really understand the capital expansion path. I don't know how Kublai's economy was super bad last game though.
 
A general question: What do you think would change if the games were played on Immortal instead of Deity difficulty level (slower victory date aside)? Would the imperialistic civs be at a relative advantage considering nobody'd start with a second settler? Culture wins more likely? Would time victory come into play? :)
 
I have no idea I haven't made one. I just autolayed only one time in that championship map made by Commodore and voted for the first outcome. Qin won, Pacal was second. Saladin was third. Gandhi was FTD, and Darius died later too.

I just thought rest of the world does not stalemate, Gandhi dies, Darius stays with his own land while someone claims more of India, and maybe one more of them dies so they become bigger and take down Darius later then end up as winner,runner up. I can't really understand the capital expansion path. I don't know how Kublai's economy was super bad last game though.
OK. Fair warning, wrapped up my tests. Still thinking of which bets to place, but did not see Qin Shi Huang do much at all. No rankings, some kills. Looks like he played the role of mid-game score leader despite his peace weight: would often benefit from early conquest appearing to snowball only to fail in putting together a working economy to effectively participate in late-game warfare.

@NickGabben I will see about running a few tests from the opening rounds. Will post what I find in the main thread.
 
A general question: What do you think would change if the games were played on Immortal instead of Deity difficulty level (slower victory date aside)? Would the imperialistic civs be at a relative advantage considering nobody'd start with a second settler? Culture wins more likely? Would time victory come into play? :)

Warmongers would be in even better shape. Tech speed slowed down. Lower difficulty levels and slower game speed such as marathon often helps fighting AIs more. One settler helps both imperialistic trait leaders and fast expanding leaders. Religion wonder focussing leaders Hatshepsut, sometimes Asoka and Isabella would be in bigger trouble.
Culture victories are more likely without aggressive ai option. And with no tech trading option.

Qin Shi Huang focuses on culture thing quite often, spreads those religions to every city yet never turns on culture slider. His economy usually solid enough, not the number one best though. Often ignored, does not take agression, takes down a wounded, in war all game civ later after teching ahead. Those cliche passive stuff describes Qin to me. But it is more important to understand the pangea map. Afterall, Darius would be very likely FTD in his opening round with those leaders in many different random maps other than that pangea.
 
I would have thought that lower difficulty levels would make conquering harder because the aggressive AI can't conjure units out of thin air the way they do on deity. Then their general ineptitude at fighting would tell more. Is that wrong?
 
I don't think it's that wild to pick Alexander for this game, but I'll be going with other picks, namely:

Darius 1st
Saladin 2nd
Alexander FTD
Spaceship, T324, 9 wars

It pains me to pick Darius and Space, as both seem overvalued currently, but Gandhi was just too much. Maybe if some choices remain woefully undervalued I will make a radical change before the stream. Still, some picks seem better suited to Fippy's contest.

I stand by my initial impression that the eastern and southern halves will likely be particularly volatile. Alexander will war, war, and war some more until he either makes gains or falls apart. All of his neighbors will have a better economy starting out, so it's mostly a question of whether they can marshal an adequate defense. Turns out the tests revealed something unexpected: rather than Gandhi repeating his opening round shenanigans, it's likely Darius who will turn on his high peace weight neighbor! Other than that, it's not the messiest game, but it's not as clean-cut as I would like.

And upon review, I would give Qin an outlier chance of first and passable odds for second, though he remains to appear the weakest in this playoff. Given my skepticism of Mehmed last week, however, watch Qin take off :lol:
 
I feel like it says something about how this season has been going that Gandhi being declared on instead of declaring war himself is considered an unexpected outcome :crazyeye:.
 
Don't worry--Gandhi has something like a 1 to 9 ratio of aggressive to defensive wars, so there will be no shortage of wars declared on him. I was surprised to see Darius declare on Gandhi a few times, as they share high peace weights and Qin is Darius' other neighbor. It seems that if Gandhi rolls high and Darius low on peace weight then lack of a shared religion is enough to direct aggression.
 
Going with Darius here. I don't see a clear favorite in this game, nor a total underdog so just hoping some distance from Alex will keep Darius safe for a long time. I did pick Alex second and Sal FTD.
 
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