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The Curious Cat - City Upkeep Explained

Discussion in 'Civ4 Strategy Articles' started by Gato Loco, Nov 7, 2005.

  1. KrikkitTwo

    KrikkitTwo Immortal

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    1)
    For Civic Upkeep (which depnds on your Civics choices, # cities and pop) Yes
    For City Maintenance (Which depends on number of cities and how far they are from palaces) NO

    2) Actually you want to build cities until CHANGE in total city maintenance=Income provided by one city
    [which means that if you can get each city to produce a bit more than ~6 gold, then there should be no limit...assuming the 'conquerors plateau' holds.]
     
  2. Gato Loco

    Gato Loco Open to Interpretation

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    1) I don't think city upkeep grows as cities grow, but civic upkeep certainly does. You can combat this by being an Organized leader, or by selecting the cheapest civics available, but generally, by the time your cities are at size 10+, you're pulling in a lot of cottage money anyway so you can afford it.

    2) Yes, they will. That's why you can expand later in the game, once the infastructure is in place. Building courthouses and the Forbidden Palace, switching to State Property, farming Great Merchants, and pillaging everything in sight can all make up for upkeep. However, with the possible exception of pillaging, these are options only available after you've settled down and improved your existing cities, so classic settler-pump, 30 cities by 1000BC ICS is not tenable.

    I'd also like to point out that 9-10 cities on a standard continents map is enough to carve out a good block of territory as long as your heart isn't set on working every tile like you would in Civ3.


    Yes, you're right. That strategy was meant specifically as an early rush strategy to be combined with an early beeline to iron working. The point is to crank out swordsmen as soon as possible while not crippling one's economy. I'd never suggest it if you aren't going to go to war early.

    Aside from the gpt calculations, you're describing a good strategy for a peaceful builder, especially with the creative trait or an early religion to provide border expansion. The circle is meant to provide the maximum production early on without tanking your economy. For builders, the important thing to maximize is your income and food. In these cases, I go for resource city placement - plop down cities in order to claim as many nearby resources with as few cities as possible, because resources are what really matters until the middle ages when you start getting the special tile improvements. After cherry-picking the best city spots, you can later go back and fill in the blanks once you've gotten costs under control (and once you can fill the unproductive areas with mills and workshops). I don't think the exact overlapping or non-overlapping of city borders is an issue because you won't be working all those tiles anyway, and the AI isn't going to settle in a small unclaimed pocket in the middle of your empire if the terrain isn't that good anyway.
     
  3. KrikkitTwo

    KrikkitTwo Immortal

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    One factoid
    the peak is at 28 cities:
    assuming each city takes up about 25 squares (when fully developed)
    then that is at about 700 tiles
    a standard Great Plains map has 32 x 44 tiles (1408)
    so the peak is reached when you have enough cities to cover ~1/2 of the map. (I would guess this holds for all map types (counting land area of course))

    So the Conquerer's Plateau is really there only for people going for the Domination Win.
     
  4. predesad

    predesad Emperor

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    I just wanted to say :goodjob: & thanx
     
  5. dssltg

    dssltg Chieftain

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    My experience has been that the AI recommends a city build site with a blue circle within the cheezy circle.

    Many times the blue circle is exactly on the recommended place in the chart above.

    Interesting, computer is suggesting city site that overlaps work areas of another city, perhaps to save on city maintanence and civics.
     
  6. neilm85uk

    neilm85uk Chieftain

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2005
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    I think the recommendation is the best two sites within range of your settler at the moment. If you move away from the city that spawned them then the recommendations will change.

    N.
     
  7. Gronz

    Gronz Chieftain

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    Nov 19, 2005
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    as far as i can tell, city upkeep does depend on size of the city.

    the distance upkeep of a city seems to be a function of city size and distance to the nearest capital.

    on difficulty noble and a standard size continent map, distance upkeep for a
    size 4 city was distance/5 in gpt
    size 7 city was distance/4 in gpt
    size 11 city was distance/3 in gpt
    size 20 city was distance/2 in gpt

    the number of cities upkeep of a city grows with increasing number of cities and city size, however it is capped at a maximum that is determined by your difficulty level.

    on difficulty noble and a standard size continent map, number of cities upkeep for each city is at least number of cities / 6 (rounded down)
    and can be more if the city is larger than size 1 and/or far away from your capital - but never more than 5 gpt.
     
  8. Tauro

    Tauro Warlord

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    rotfl
    I agree :)

    Thx for the great job
     
  9. MosquitoE

    MosquitoE Chieftain

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    Nice work, very informative.
    Could you tell from your tests how the game treats distance to the forbidden palace as compared to the palace?
     
  10. DrWu

    DrWu Chieftain

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    Great info, thanks.
     
  11. Jonny211

    Jonny211 Chieftain

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    Location:
    Bromley, Kent
    Thanks for doing the research and posting it... you've answered a question I was itching to know.

    Now off to move my palace!
     
  12. LeSphinx

    LeSphinx Bachogwa

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    Yes me too.
    I was looking for tips and detailled informations about this.
    Great!
    LeSphinx
     
  13. Samson

    Samson Deity

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    Anyone one know what the "no. of cities" number maxes out at at different difficulties (esp. Noble atm)?
     
  14. Dogzilla

    Dogzilla Chieftain

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    IMO a good city always pays for itself, no matter how many cities you have or how far from your capital it is. This study does not take into account wonders/improvements that lower city cost, and a good city will always produce much more gold than it drains once it's developed.
    A poor city site, on the other hand, is proably not worth bothering with, unless it has a strategic location or needed resource.
    BTW, does anyone really place cities in a prefab grid? One of the fun parts of the game is picking city sites, based on a host of factors--coast, river, resources so another player doesn't get an annoying foothold on your continent, etc...I guess that's why I never win on high difficulty levels.:p
     
  15. eg577

    eg577 Warlord

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    Do we have a full formula for each component of corruption yet?
     
  16. kurdt

    kurdt Chieftain

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    What were the cultural values for those cities? I just got the game yesterday myself, but it seems a lot seems to go back to culture, maybe upkeep distance costs?
     
  17. Blkbird

    Blkbird King

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    Best catch phrase I've seem in this forum. :lol:
     
  18. Gronz

    Gronz Chieftain

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    culture does not modify the distance upkeep of a city (just tried it in the world editor: size 7 city at 40 tiles distance = 10 distance upkeep, regardless of culture)
     
  19. Thalassicus

    Thalassicus Bytes and Nibblers

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    must...keep...straight face... :twitch:
    ...try leaving a few tiles of Ice with a seafood nearby; they'll plop a settler right down as happy as can be! :lol:
    It's sad when the other leaders starts dropping their citizens down in 1-tile pockets all around your empire, the poor guys have to eke a living off ice and some meager fish, right over the horizon from some of the most legendary cities in the world. :(

    I usually take pity on them, and "liberate" their citizens from the torment of their brutal dictator. :mischief:


    It actually displays visible sites (non-fog of war) within one or two moves of the settler. You can look at how it makes choices for terrain by dropping a bunch of settlers on hills on a random map and seeing where the circles are.

    It usually aims for the maximum number of resources in the city radius, with less consideration for potential food/production/commerce in the city. Resources can be attained even if they're not in your city's workable tiles though, so sometimes it's better to build cities without direct access to a resource, if it gives you better overall tile values for the city. After getting experience with the game, I've found I can almost always place better cities without the recommendations visible. After all, the human mind is excellent at pattern recognition and goal-oriented planning, two things that are very harde to code.
     
  20. Requies

    Requies Prince

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    Not sure if you ever got around to testing it, but it seems like this doesn't work exactly right....

    Outside City view

    Spoiler :


    Antium (N city, distance maintenance = 1). Note: this maintenance was there the very moment I built Antium (which was my second city)

    Spoiler :


    Arpinum (E city, distance maintenance = 0). I decided to build this farther out for resources (5 square distance) and was surprised to find that the distance maintenance was 0.

    Spoiler :


    Also, as I gained more cities (or as they grew, I'm not sure which) my cities' distance maintenance increased (in ALL my cities except Rome) from 0 to 1.

    Req
     

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