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The Philosophical super scientist city

Discussion in 'Civ4 Strategy Articles' started by EverNoob, Feb 6, 2006.

  1. EverNoob

    EverNoob Prince

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    I've seen some articles talk about the science city using super specialist scientists and oxford, but none of them described the specific strategy on *how* to build one. This is simply my way to do it, not the only or necessarily the best way.

    First off this requires only 2 World Wonders: Stonehenge and the Great Library. This is good news because Stonehenge is easy to chop. The hard part is getting GL before another civ while balancing your early game expansion. Stonehenge is necessary to get the initial Great Prophets, you'll need 2-3 of them. An important fact about Stonehenge is that you can build Stonehenge and the GL both in your capital without "diluting" your great scientist GPP with great prophet GPP, since you can "turn off" the Stonehenge by researching Calendar (yes obsoletion is a good thing!).

    So you chop the Stonehenge in your capital city, remember to leave some forests to chop your GL. Your are now producing 2*2=4 GPP towards a great prophet (100 GPP). You want to use him to get Code of Laws (CoL). The only way to do this is to NOT research Masonry, and research Writing plus all the other religion techs beforehand: Meditation, Polyheism, and Priesthood. Not having Masonry closes off Monotheism and diverts your great prophet to CoL. You have 25 turns before your great prophet pops up, so make sure you can open up CoL within that time before building Stonehenge. Else you're better off building settler/worker till then. You can research the necessary techs sooner if you went for Writing early and chopped a Library in your capital. While the GPP is the main reason for building Stonehenge, it's main effect is great too if you're not Creative or start with Mysticism.

    Your first Great Prophet is used to get Code of Laws and found Confucionism. If it wasn't founded in your capital, spread it to your capital via your free missionary. Next chop a Temple and stick a priest specialist in your capital. You are now producing (2+3)*2=10 GPP. You need 200 GPP for the 2nd GP, so you have 20 turns to get to Literature. The 2nd Great Prophet is used to get Civil Service, again you need to NOT research Masonry to do this. Once you get Civil Service, switch to Bureaucracy and start chop/pop rush the GL. If you have marble nearby you can now safely research masonry and hook up to it. Remember to chop *after* hooking up to marble, as the double production bonus applied to chops too.

    Next take off the priest and stick 2 scientists in your capital. Next step is to "turn off" your Stonehenge. Head for Calendar as soon as you can while building the National Epic as well. Depending on how long it took you to turn off Stonehenge, you should be at 70-80% chance to pop your Great Scientist. With your first Great Scientist, build the Academy in your capital. Any Great Scientist after that are parked in your capital as a super specialist. With Library+Academy+Monastery, a super scientist initially produces 6+85%=11.1 research all by himself, and adding 1 point of production. After turning off Stonehenge, you should be churning out 45 GPP/turn, at 83% scientist.

    The following part is no longer time sensitive, as the GL was the last World Wonder you needed for this strategy. Your next goal is Education, for Universities (built at 1/2 cost!) and Oxford. If you're really ready to build your Universities early, you can spare 1 Great Scientist to hurry Education. You need 6 Universities to build Oxford, so logically your empire needs to be at least 6 cities. Once it's built your max number of scientists in your city is now 5, stick as many scientists as food production allows.

    Now head for Constitution, to allow Representation. Then Astronomy for the Observatory. By then a single super scientist produces at least (6+3)=9, +235% = 21.15. This excludes the regular scientist you got working in your capital too. Be ready for a slight drop in research and GPP after Scientific Method (SM), which obsoletes the GL and Monastery. However by then your city should be so full of scientist it won't matter much, so don't delay SM for this reason alone. Past SM you might wanna start making other types of GP to feed Golden Ages.

    Notes: This strategy can be combined with different styles of play, not just tech whoring, as it concerns only your science city. You can devote your other cities to production or commerce as you see fit. I myself use Alexander with this strat, using it to keep on par with tech while I wage war, so my most of other cities are production oriented. Also I am in no way suggesting a pure beeline for the techs I mentioned above, since you obviously need other techs to keep your empire afloat and fight off other civs. However you do need more focus to race for the GL. You can use Oracle instead of Stonehenge, but I prefer the increased certainty of getting scientists. You can also choose to wait for a 3rd Great Prophet before getting GL and turning off Stonehenge, to build a shrine. But a 3rd GP requires 300 GP. This is feasible if you use have 2 religions in your capital to stick a 2nd priest. (2+3+3)*2 = 16 GPP/turn takes 19 turns, at least. To make up for the lost time, you can research Monotheism and build your GL under Organized Religion as well as Bureaucracy.

    Whew, I hope this was helpful! :crazyeye:
     
  2. budweiser

    budweiser King of the Beers

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    Thats a good tip.

    What I thought of earlier was building just The Oracle for a free tech; Metal Casting. This allows you to put forges in your cities and to grow engineers as great people. Chop a forge. While one of these is cooking, research to literature and when your GL pops you get instant Great Library. You have to have a library in the city already, just chop it.
     
  3. Zombie69

    Zombie69 Emperor

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    You'll be much better off separating the two functions of GP generation and GP usage. Make your GP in your GPF (Great People farm), and then add them as super specialists in your SC (science city) filled with cottages. However, especially in the early game, it will often be more efficient to use extra Great Scientists for Academies in other cities (see cottage spam). Careful examination should always be done before deciding if you're better off with one more Academy or with one more Super Scientist in your SSC (super science city). All of this, in much more detail than i can give in such a small post, can already be found in the forums.
     
  4. DaveMcW

    DaveMcW Deity

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    If you build Oxford and Heroic Epic in the same city, you can farm scientists without switching to Caste System.

    But I agree with Zombie69, usually it's better to use Caste System and separate those 2 national wonders.
     
  5. Zombie69

    Zombie69 Emperor

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    Golden Ages are generally regarded as useless, and for good reason. Anything else your two GP can do will be better than a golden age at that point in the game. The fact that you wrote Golden Ages (i.e. plural) is even worse. In no game would you even want more than one of those, and in no circumstances before spaceship era anyway. Just do the maths, you'll see.
     
  6. robinm

    robinm Chieftain

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    My GP strategy games go something like this:

    I try to chop the Pyramids in the capital, then beeline for Litereature and use the resulting Great Engineer to rush the Great Library. I am now set up for a huge capital science city.

    The next GP will ideally be a Great Scientist to create an acadamy, but if I get a Great Engineer I'll rush the Parthanon if it's still available.

    By this time my 2nd city should have developed nicely as the dedicated GP farm, and I'll create a string of Great Scientists and Great Merchants to fill the capital city with.

    I'm trying to refine the strategy to be more reliable at Emporer and above. The main challenge is weaning myself off the Pyramids dependancy. This measn chasing Metal Casting for a forge, and this takes too long in current experiments.
     
  7. Kenji

    Kenji Chieftain

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    personally i like Great Pyramid more than Stonehenge.

    Great Pyramid enable all Gover civics, which means i can turn to Representation (+3 beaker each specialist and +3 happiness in 5 biggest cities)

    with Great Pyramid, i can have my 1st Great Person as Great Engineer mostly. thats mean a 1 turn Great Library.

    the 2nd city if i got time and wood i will get Oracle, for Metal Casting. hence, use the slavery to get the Forge as fast as possible, using the Engineer to add the speed for Great Engineer. thus...we can have 2 Great Engineer before we get to build Great Library, thus..we can use the 1st GEngineer to build Pathenon...in 2nd city ;)

    we are now at +100%, +50% Great Person growth spd now ;)
     
  8. Gaspar~

    Gaspar~ Warlord

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    I have to take exception to that comment. While I'll certainly agree that it can be argued that GAs are suboptimal, I'd highly disagree that they are generally regarded as useless. There's a lot of times when a GA is extremely useful. The main thing is, the usefulness of a GA is directly related to the size of your empire. A large empire, a GA can be massive. The two best times for GAs usually are when you get factories to make the empirewide factory push and during a space race, where its invaluable. Theres other times as well.

    I'd generally agree early GPs are better used to build their buildings, research key techs, or as super specialists. As almost always, the best answer is usually it depends.
     
  9. petey

    petey Prince

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    Golden Ages are great in the later game when you have a lot of big cities. I especially like taking them just after I've completed the Apollo program and shoot a bunch of quick SS parts. In the later game, GPs become much less useful than they are in the earlier game and hoarding them for a Golden Age is a good strategy.

    I agree with Zombie69 about them being useless if you'r talking about the early to mid-game, though. At that point, the benefits from two GPs outweighs a Golden Age by far.
     
  10. Periander

    Periander Chieftain

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    Definately go the Philosophical/Pyramids strat instead, (although, it kinda ruins your whole strategy because you'll need masonry right after bronze).

    You can finish the GL in one turn with your great engineer, and you can switch to Representation, and just keep adding great scientists and engineers as super specialists, (with the bonus +3 beakers). Get the Sistine Chapel, and that's +2 culture per SS aswell. Then head for Philosophy, (provided your playing passively), and then you'll have pacifism, (100% GP production).

    Alot of people use cottage spamming/universal suff and have specific types of cities. Personally, I just use alot of SSes with rep, and academies in a handful of cities, (but only once they're producing 20-30 beakers, otherwise a SS would be more useful). I only have two types of cities, one is set to auto/beaker (general), and the other auto/hammer, (unit prod/wonder prod). It may not be as powerful in the end, but I usually end up dominating with Redcoats long before that matters.
     
  11. EverNoob

    EverNoob Prince

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    I had thought about that, then realized that the benefits of separating the 2 functions was negligeable.

    A citizen can either be working a cottage, or be a scientist:
    Cottage = 7 base commerce (town+free speech+printing press)
    Scientist = 6 base science (with representation)

    Now if we seperated NE and Oxford, the difference would be offset by the need to run caste system for the GPF, which has a higher upkeep. A cottage city produces more food, and in theory can have higher population, but past the early game health is the limiting factor for city size, so even the cottage city isn't going to be significantly bigger than the GPF.

    As for spawning academies being better, that is very dependant on your tech slider %. A high tech % favours the academy, whereas a low tech % favours the super scientist. As mentioned before, I play Alex and go for a military game, therefore my tech slider is around 40-60%. I do in fact compare how much more science an academy vs super scientist would produce and find that I'm usually better off with the super scientist. But occasionally I stick an academy in a city with exceptionally high commerce.

    However if you are playing Elizabeth (or any other financial civ), I could see how spawning Academies and/or separating GPF+SSC would be more efficient.
     
  12. blue222

    blue222 Chieftain

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    I find this very informative but when it is mentioned to chop something (ie the Pyramids) what does that mean. Thank you.
     
  13. ionimplant

    ionimplant Prince

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    chopping forests can give the nearby cities hammers (exact number depends on the game speed, distance and the city improvement). if you chop several forests, you can finish something very fast.
     
  14. Zombie69

    Zombie69 Emperor

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    It doesn't work this way. The scientist eats 2 food and makes none. A grassland cottage provides for the citizen's own food. In order to feed the scientist, you'll need 2 more citizens working farms.

    3 cottages = 21 base commerce
    1 scientist + 2 farms = 6 base science, pathetic compared to 21
     
  15. jray

    jray King

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    EDIT: I was being silly asserting that specialist eat only 1 food. You're right, Zombie69 and Krikkitone :).
     
  16. EverNoob

    EverNoob Prince

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    And as I mentioned:
    Zombie69, your math applies for a city with no special food resources, ie: flood plains, rice, etc. It's generally agreed that one does not build a GPF without a large food supply.
     
  17. EverNoob

    EverNoob Prince

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    I hate going into remotely complicated math, that's why I'm in the biological sciences :) The efficiency of separation of Oxford and GPF again depends on tech slider %. If we compare the net effect of Oxford in a cottage city and the GPF:

    Net effect from scientist (6 science) = 6

    Net effect from cottage (7 commerce)
    at 70% tech = 4.9
    at 80% tech = 5.6
    at 90% tech = 6.3

    It's impossible to calculate how much gold caste system costs since it's dependent on empire size, but it's fair to say that at 80% tech slider seperating or putting together Oxford and NE are roughly equivalent. Taking into account the fact that the cottage city has slightly more population, minus the cost of caste system.

    However once you lower the tech slider below 80% putting Oxford and NE together begins to be more effecient.

    We could also take into account the fact that it takes some time for a cottage to mature, vs the immediate gain from a newly assgigned scientist. The math above wasn't really complicated but man I'm feeling so lazy right now, I'll do it in the next post maybe :crazyeye:
     
  18. KrikkitTwo

    KrikkitTwo Immortal

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    All city population, specialists or tile workers, eat 2 food
    (The exception is Super Specialists and Free Specialists from Mercantilism/ Statue of Liberty which eat 0 food)

    So if you are limited by Happiness (limit to total pop units and excess food anyways from food special resources) then 1 Specialist v. 1 Cottage is valid

    If you are limited by Food (Terrain) then after biology
    1 Farm = 2 food = 1 Specialist v. 1 Cottage
    6 v. 7 (close)
    Pre-Biology
    2 Farms= 2 Food= 1 Specialist v. 2 Cottages
    6 v. 14 (not close)

    For a Pyramid Representation, Pre Printing Press/Free Speech, etc.
    2 Farms= 2 Food= 1 Specialist v. 2 Cottages
    6 v. 8 (close)

    So Representation scientists are only really worth it if you get them early (with Pyramids) or Post biology.. and even then, Cottages are better, Scientists making it up on the intangibles (GPP/ faster buildup, etc.).


    For a real combo, you would have Globe Theater, and NE in your specialist city... in which case 3 Farms=1 Specialist (to account for the poor health) or you limit it to your health limit pre biology... post biology no need to.
    and then the next combo is Oxford with cottages, an Academy and Super Scientists (after you have 5 Super Scientists, the next one for that city is best used as an academy even if you are running 0% science... earlier if you have any other sources of science in the city)
     
  19. Zombie69

    Zombie69 Emperor

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    Specialists, like all citizens, eat 2 food. You need to work a 4 food tile, or two 3 food tiles, to support a single specialist.
     
  20. Zombie69

    Zombie69 Emperor

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    If you have lots of extra food, then with 2 extra food, you can work any of the following:
    - 2 grassland mines, producing 6 hammers
    - 1 plains mine, producing 4 hammers
    - 1 plains cottage, producing 1 hammer and 7 commerce

    All of the above are much better than anything a single specialist can give you.

    Sure you build your GPF on a spot with lots of food, but what you don't seem to understand is that the sole purpose of the GPF is to produce GP. The other things specialists provide is irrelevant and actually pretty useless. Because of this, you don't want to have more than one GPF, and you don't want your GPF to be your science city because it will be pretty crappy at it.
     

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