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Tall or Wide?

Discussion in 'Civ6 - Strategy & Tips' started by therottweiler, Mar 6, 2019.

  1. therottweiler

    therottweiler Chieftain

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    Getting back into Civ 6 after a long hiatus. Really loving the GS expansion and trying to up my game. On Emperor and above is going tall viable or is wide better? Thanks.
     
  2. Victoria

    Victoria Regina Supporter

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    Wide, no punishment for wide in this game and the benefits are more districts of the same type. Population gives you minimal benefit, certainly past pop10 your city will struggle with happiness for little value.
    A great starting aim is 10 cities by turn 100.
    It is possible to win with a single city on deity but luck is involved. It is not hard to win on deity but more limited in approach so you get quite a few that play emperor. I play both ... and sometimes Prince.
    Have a look at the Game of the Month forum and see the descriptions of how many cities people built and what order they researched.
     
    therottweiler likes this.
  3. therottweiler

    therottweiler Chieftain

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    Thank you great information. Somewhat disheartening though. I always preferred micro managing 5-6 cities and growing the heck out of them.
     
  4. Victoria

    Victoria Regina Supporter

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  5. Carto

    Carto Chieftain

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    I usually play tall games on King through Immortal difficulties. I plan for 4 cities in the early / mid game, and usually add another 2-4 small-pop cities as I adapt to the late game map.

    It's not that playing tall isn't viable, it's that there are very few disincentives to playing wide. For example, in a tall game I will build an audience chamber in the GovPlaza and slot policy cards that improve governors. This provides an amenity boost to tall cities, but the only penalty to playing wide is -2 loyalty in cities w/out a governor. That's a hindrance, but not enough of one to force me to play tall.

    Here are some thoughts on playing tall:
    - Space out your cities so you have the room to put your pop to work. Between a quarter and a third of your city territory will need to go to farms. Another quarter / third needs to go to improvements to maximize yields, and the remaining space is for districts / wonders. If you space your cities too close, you won't notice this crowded until the mid/late game when you can't grow past the housing penalty. Cities should be placed so their districts get at least a +3 adjacency bonus.
    - Spreading out your cities means you're in for lots of early game wars. In the Ancient Era, the biggest difference in warfare is that you'll probably be on the defensive rather than offensive. The classical and medieval eras are when you have to be careful, though, as that's when the AI will have the biggest lead in tech and production power. (In GS, it feels like the AI is less likely to declare war on you just for maintaining a small army.)
    - Focus on 1 or 2 types of great people. Unless you grab Divine Spark and Oracle to compensate, you'll be slow to generate great person points until you get your T1 and T2 buildings up and running. Even then, you'll need to make up for the points the AI gets from their extra districts. Playing with 4 cities, I'm usually okay with 3 primary districts.
    - Plan to use gold or faith as an alternative to producing units and buildings. Once you've unlocked T2 buildings, you'll be spending a lot of time upgrading your cities. You can't afford disruptions to produce units, granaries, etc. Make sure you have cash on hand or faith+Valetta to compensate.
    - Be prepared to lag mid game when your cities push up against the housing and amenities limits. This use to be more of a problem, but there are now many options for increasing housing and amenities through buildings, unique and CS improvements, etc.
    - There's no point in planning an invasion unless you've already got a plan for overcoming the resulting loyalty pressure. If you can't hold a city, plan wars around pillaging instead.
    - Playing wide lets you overcome your civ's weaknesses through the sheer number of cities and districts. When you play tall, there's a greater importance on plugging gaps with the pantheon, governors, policy cards, wonders, etc. For example, instead of building 2 campuses, build 1 campus and slot Natural Philosophy and Pingala.

    - This is advice for having fun, not for winning: poke the AI more. After R&F and GS, the AI does not seem as aggressive towards small empires. If you play too conservatively, it's possible the AI will leave you alone, turning the game into a production race. You need to be disrupting their cities and creating power imbalances that lead to wars. The grievance and alliance system is good for building power blocs to this end.

    I enjoy playing tall. I'm aware that it's not the most competitive style of play, but I feel like I engage with more of the game than I would in competitive play.
     
    Wizard-Bob likes this.
  6. Victoria

    Victoria Regina Supporter

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    The key thing to note is the AI is not the cleverest so once you get a good grip and can win without to much trouble dropping to playing peacefully tall is a challenge in itself.
    People can beat deity with a single city with the right map and some luck... that means emperor OCC can be done with some care... which also means 4-6 cities certainly is winnable but you need to know the game first to do well.

    Civ 5, tall is great and wide was fine to a degree once you knew what you were doing.
    Civ 6 is the opposite.
     
  7. greenblade

    greenblade Chieftain

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    I had the same question when start playing Civ 6. But recently I often ask another question: How many pops do I need for this city?

    The basics about pop are:
    - Each pop provides 0.5 science and 0.3 culture;
    - Each pop can work a tile, or be a specialist;
    - Every pop requires a housing;
    - Every 2 pops require 1 amenity;
    - Every 3 pops can support a specialty district.

    So the rule of thumb is 10 pops for a good city because you can have 4 specialty districts and take advantage of Rationalism policy. Due to the poor output of specialists (compare to civ 5), pops higher than 10 is usually a waste of amenity and housing. However, there are exceptions:
    - If the city really needs another specialty district, or have real good tiles to work, I'll grow it to 13 or higher.
    - Not every city needs Industrial Zone, Commercial Hub, or even Campus/Theatre Square, depending on your victory condition. In that case, I'll leave a poor city at pop 4 or 7.

    A common trick to bypass housing cap is harvesting food resources (cow/rice/wheat) or chopping rainforest to grow it to the target pop and stay there. Or grow to 4/7 to lay down core districts as early as possible. If you follow this logic, you often don't need Granary. And it's perfectly fine to settle a city without fresh water, because it's fairly easy to "chop" it to pop 10.
     
  8. Tyroq

    Tyroq Warlord

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    Man sometimes it's a pain to get cities to stop growing. I played a game as the Maori on an island plates map with God of the Sea pantheon, plus Auckland suzerain bonus. Made my water tiles nicer to work, but they also came with piles of food. I ran out of room for districts because there just wasn't enough land on my chain of tiny islands that I settled. I ended up having nothing to build except ships, which made Harald love me to death. But yeah... I wasn't going for a domination victory, so that felt kinda like wasted production.
     
  9. HermannLombard

    HermannLombard Warlord

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    Same problem with my Maori capital. Damn thing grew like a weed, and there were very few tiles that *didn't* produce at least two food. Squirreled away as many specialists as I could, and still it grew.
     
  10. Victoria

    Victoria Regina Supporter

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    Maybe one city tops but normally I build 0
     
  11. kb27787

    kb27787 Emperor

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    Nothing wrong with a tall capital. For Maori every pop is 2 cpt and fpt once conservation is up (and the taller it is the quicker you will reach it). Pingala loves tall capitals... Stick him in there and enjoy seeing the civics tree melt away even when you don't have many cities. A size 15+ city with Pingala is worth many, many districts in terms of output.
     
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  12. Socrates99

    Socrates99 Bottoms up!

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    Pingalas new bonus encourages you to have at least one mega city. I like to go wide with a tall center. Having a handful of cities that can spit out troops every couple turns or run projects in a few turns is great.

    If you like the old tall style play you could pick a handful of cities to hyper focus on while just dropping a harbor/CD, entertainment/waterpark and whatever your victory district is in the others. Then just run projects and ignore those satellites while micromanaging your tall center. Thatd be similar to vanilla Vs puppet empires.
     
  13. Lordfar

    Lordfar Chieftain

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    Hi, I only partly agree with the pop 10 max theory. since higher pops gain more production and stuff from tiles and unless AW then u do not have to worry about unhappiness at all, i even sell all luxuries (if not AW). However, I also go wide rather than tall for sure, and make lot of the same dsitrict whatever is best, like if i have 3 CS with 3 envoys for culture, then i make theater districts a.s.o.
    Did you try AW on a enourmous map like 148 * 84 ?
     
  14. DrCron

    DrCron Prince

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    Well, you can easily win pretty much any map with just 8 cities, so it's not such a big difference anyway. You just won't grow them so much because it's better to keep them close to each other (for factories, zoos, loyalty...) so they won't have so much food as they did in Civ 5.
     
  15. ezzlar

    ezzlar Emperor

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    I play Duel maps with 4 AI:s usually. This prevents the AI from going really wide and so you can play tall without being hopelessly behind. It´s hard to stay tall in larger maps while the AI:s swells out.
     

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