1. We have added a Gift Upgrades feature that allows you to gift an account upgrade to another member, just in time for the holiday season. You can see the gift option when going to the Account Upgrades screen, or on any user profile screen.
    Dismiss Notice

The power of microing RA's

Discussion in 'Civ5 - Strategy & Tips' started by Fluxx, Dec 20, 2010.

  1. travlake

    travlake Chieftain

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2010
    Messages:
    52
    It seems to me this whole argument is about the definition of the word "exploit", which is seems unimportant to me.

    Another unimportant issue, to me anyway, is how the game "should" be played now. We all have our own copies of the game and should be allowed to play them however we want, save for competitions such as GOTM and HOF. In those latter two cases, the debate should be shifted from "exploit or not?" to "allowable in GOTM or HOF?". That way we focus on a specific decision rather than defining words. But I think that discussion belongs in threads specifically related to those competitions.

    The final, and truly important, issue is how we think the game should change in the future. And, the good news is that here I think most of us agree that it should be changed (TMIT included). The remaining question is, how should it change? I personally like the suggestion that RAs give a completely random tech that is not the one you are currently researching. This accomplishes the original intent (no RAs grant something you are almost done with) but removes the tedious micro.
     
  2. es4

    es4 Chieftain

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2009
    Messages:
    73
    I think you're getting ridiculous here.

    If the point of a research agreement was to give a free tech of the player's choosing, that's how it would/should have been implemented. From the comments from 2kGreg etc., it seems clear the point was to give a random tech. With about 2 turns of research (using overflow), you can get 3 techs of your choosing, which will be about 2x the beakers of getting purely random techs. This clearly isn't what is supposed to happen here.
     
  3. alpaca

    alpaca King of Ungulates

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2006
    Messages:
    2,322
    I totally agree with this point but unfortunately I doubt Firaxis understands it. Just look at Great People. The Great Scientists are way overpowered, so what did the devs do to "fix" them? They reduce your capability of creating GS points (which is similar to a cost increase). That this is the completely wrong approach that will just lead to people looking for different ways to still get as many GS as possible, but doesn't fix the underlying problem that GS are just hands down stronger than the other GP at all.

    Even designing the GS like this in the first place shows that they don't understand that things need to be balanced somehow - even if it's a situational balance - if they compete for the same resources.
     
  4. Txurce

    Txurce Deity

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2002
    Messages:
    8,274
    Location:
    Venice, California
    I'm not sure if this is the thread in which you asked whether anyone would be interested in a mod that turned GS' contribution into beakers (effectively like GE's?), but I certainly would be.
     
  5. TheNoodle

    TheNoodle Chieftain

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2010
    Messages:
    63
    The patch completely killed my enjoyment of the game I needed 5 companion cavalries as greece to take Berlin. As babylon, Harun el pussicat attacked my 3 cities and 2 bowmen with 4 warriors 2 swordsmen and 1 archer. I rush bought 1 wall of baby and he got stoppped in his tracks, i got 2 free workers anbd 1 city from his peace deal lol. and we can t start making great scientists till we have obeservatories/ universities... just dumb the mods are not much betters because they re all bugged/unstable since the patch/hotfix many ideas were ok but all of them together is too much. the game is harder now, I admit, but in no way better just more full of sh*t. probably the next patch will nerf RAs, not to mention AI dosn t have so much money at prince to allow for ealy purchases AS easily. No surprise their lead designer got fired.
     
  6. Bibor

    Bibor Doomsday Machine

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2004
    Messages:
    2,978
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Zagreb, Croatia
    If you did the same, you'd also probably loose. 4 warriors, 2 swordsmen and 1 archer are no match for a fortified city with 2 UU archers. The archer can't take down the walls quick enough, while the swords/warriors get kicked by the Bowmen/citytower.
     
  7. ds61514

    ds61514 Warlord

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2006
    Messages:
    210
    I have a question: how come no one ever complained about the Great Scientist in Civ 4 to such a degree?

    With a Civ 4 Great Scientist, I can do the following:

    1) Trade for 7 techs

    2) Cause a world war

    3) (1) and (2) together.

    RAs (and Civ 5 Great Scientists) are nowhere near as powerful as a Civ 4 Great Scientist (or a Civ 4 Great Merchant, for that matter).

    Somewhere in this thread TMIT made a point that given the ridiculous bonuses the AI has at Immortal & Deity, the human needs something to be able to compete at the highest difficulty levels. In Civ 4, that was techtrading, beelining & backfilling, all stuff that required metagame knowledge of AI tech preferences, AI trade willingness (cautious vs. pleased vs. friendly), and GS bulb preferences. In Civ 5, after horseman got nerfed, I guess it's the RA mechanic :lol:

    Other differences in techs between Civ 5 & Civ4:

    1) Civ 4 technologies unlocks civics, whereas Civ 5 technologies only unlock policies once for each era, and even then you need culture to get the policies.

    2) Civ 4 techs have way more passive bonuses.

    3) Advanced units in Civ 4 are easier to get ASAP. In BTS Imm+, the human's military edge generally comes in Renaissance. Why? Cavalry are 50% more powerful than Knights, but only cost 33% more. Cannons are even worse; 100% more powerful than a Treb, 20% more cost. You can get 3 Rifles every turn with drafting, and 1/turn indefinitely once Globe is set up.

    In contrast, in Civ 5, once you hit your military tech, my experience has been that it takes a lot more resources to capitalize on that tech advantage. For example: I get Steel. It takes ~240 gold to upgrade a warrior to a longsword, ~150 to upgrade a swordsman to a longsword. I have ~500 gold. Do I:

    1) Get an RA and upgrade a warrior to a longsword?

    2) Upgrade two warriors to longswords?

    3) Upgrade 3 swordsman to longswords, which meant that I was spending my time building units and neglecting my infra, perhaps depriving me of a quicker RA.

    4) Prebuilding is much more prevalent in Civ 4 than in Civ 5, via the whip mechanic. Once Education is online, my universities are going up ASAP. Once Rifling is online, mass Cavalry or Cannon whip. In Civ 4, the best players can literally whip an army up out of nowhere. Also, since food = pop = beakers/commerce/hammers, your food is working for you while you are prebuilding.

    In Civ 5, the only prebuilding is for units, and even then it's upgrades. And upgrades are expensive.

    Furthermore, as others has posted, RAs aren't even that useful in King-Emperor. Maybe it's better to take that 250 gold, upgrade 3 warriors to swordsman and just kill an AI.

    My conclusion: tech speed in Civ 5 isn't as important as Civ 4. Personally, since I have never had a feeling of historical immersion in Civ and am sick to death of the Liberalism beeline, I kinda like the "build a beeline" feature of the RAs ;).
     
  8. Monthar

    Monthar Deity

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2004
    Messages:
    2,046
    Location:
    Elmendorf, Tx
    The reason is because the GP in Civ 4 could only add a certain number of beakers to a tech and only certain types of GP could give beakers to a tech, depending on the tech. In the early stages of the game that meant completing the research in a single turn, but later techs, it'd only reduce the turns left to completion. In other words this mechanic worked exactly the same as GE's did with hurrying wonders. However, in Civ 5, a GS is the only GP that can bulb tech and will always completely bulb every tech regardless of era, so what might have taken 3-4 GS's to bulb in Civ 4, now only takes 1 GS. Yet, the GE in Civ 5 works exactly as it did in Civ 4, it only applies x number of hammers so if a wonder takes more than x hammers it won't complete in a single turn.
     
  9. ds61514

    ds61514 Warlord

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2006
    Messages:
    210
    Don't you have to consider the following:

    1) Civ 4 GS are so much easier to get. Library, University, Pacifism, National Epic, Caste, etc. And this is only counts stuff which the player has 100% control. Once you add in Philosophical, GL, Parthenon, and other GS wonders, the GPP goes insane.

    2) The GS bulb path:

    a) Philo --> More GP
    b) Edu --> Even more GP. Also good for military, since it leads to Gunpowder.
    c) Liberalism --> A super GS! Also great trade bait.
    d) Printing Press (sometimes) --> not a GS, but it leads you to Rifling...

    The GS bulb path leads to both more techs AND military.

    3) The moment GS become weak, it is VERY easy to transition to Merchants. My first Civ 4 Deity win had me generate two GMs to upgrade ~20 pre-built knights into cavalry and then just stomp Sitting Bull.

    4) Civ 4 has the Internet, the ultimate "beeline" project.

    In any case, the "no-brainer" aspect is still there. In Civ 4, in the early game you always want GSs and you could get them. At least now, you have to detour to an expensive and non-military tech.
     
  10. Monthar

    Monthar Deity

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2004
    Messages:
    2,046
    Location:
    Elmendorf, Tx
    The point is, in Civ 4 all the GP are roughly equal, because all of them can bulb some techs, create a corporation, and their other bonuses are roughly equal to each other. Yet, in Civ 5, most of the GP are very inferior to the GS and the GS is a bit OP, because it can completely bulb any tech throughout the entire game. In other words, the devs boosted the GS from what it was in Civ 4, kept the GE the same, and made the other GP even weaker than their Civ 4 counterparts. All this on top of making all GP even harder to get than in Civ 4. Yet, instead of balancing the GP to each other by boosting the weak GA & GM and reducing the GS to be comparable to the GE and its Civ 4 counterpart, they made it even harder to get the GS.

    They also nerfed the GG, but at least it isn't competing with the other GP for resources.

    On top of all of this, all the buildings that have specialist slots give 2 hammer/beakers/gold per specialist depending on the type. Yet those that generate artists only give 1 culture from the specialists and the same number of GPP. This makes running artist specialists even worse, which further devalues the excessively gimped GA.

    You have to compare the GS to the other GP in each game to see where the real problem lies. Comparing the GS in 5 to the GS in 4 while disregarding the other GP, gives a false indication that the GS is underpowered in Civ 5, because of how much harder it is to obtain. Yet, due to the core differences between Civ 5 and Civ 4, the reality is the GS is slightly overpowered, the GE is about right, GM is slightly underpowered and the GA is very underpowered.
     
  11. ds61514

    ds61514 Warlord

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2006
    Messages:
    210
    But you have to consider that it's not just the power of the GP, it's also the ability to mass them. In Civ 4, the Great Scientist was king until Renaissance, and then the Great Merchant led the way. Most of it was the power of the Great Person itself, but another one was the fact that you could mass them very easily.

    Great Engineers: Good, but they were hard to mass because of no Caste. Also, the specialist sucked.

    Great Artists: Uh...bulb Nationalism? A weak culture bomb that sometimes wouldn't even take any tiles? More often than not they were used for GAs...

    Great Prophet: Also hard to mass, and besides, it was better to take the AI's shrine :crazyeye:.

    Great Spy? Pretty good, but only really useful for Spy strategies.

    In Civ 5, I see it as follows:

    GS: The most powerful late game, but also the hardest to mass (unless you are Siam). Also, as previously stated, getting advanced tech is less powerful in Civ 5 than in Civ 4. In addition, RAs serve as an alternative to GS generation. Pure RAs can get you to Medieval ~ turn 70 (or faster); no GS strategy (sans Babylon) can get you there that fast.

    GE: Mid-range. Easier to get than a GS (metal casting is faster, workshops are cheaper), pretty powerful effects.

    GM: Easiest to get, but also the weakest, although it's comparatively better now.

    GA: I will concede that you're right :king:. Oh well, at least it's a Golden Age!
     
  12. SammyKhalifa

    SammyKhalifa Deity

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2003
    Messages:
    6,020
    I found CivIV GAs to be pretty awesome for my (rare) wars of conquest . . .
     
  13. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam Top Logic

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2008
    Messages:
    25,913
    The ridiculous thing is how flimsy the counter-arguments people provide can be.

    This aspect of RA has been public knowledge since a day or two of release, possibly on release day. We've had 2 patches now. Where's the change? We have multiple DLC civs added, but no code change for RA. Before you start talking about what 2k (not firaxis) thinks about the "intent" of RA, why not take a look at what firaxis is actually doing. You can't possibly think they've not been aware of this, can you?

    I've also offered the argument that the current game setup/difficulty are balanced around the existence of ALL features in their present form, and that changing balance/features does not happen in a vacuum. Nobody's really had an answer for that position.

    And yes, I do think it should be changed. It's terrible design. Again, however, that does not, necessarily, mean that using it is exploitative. Citing the opinion of someone who isn't even working on the game is about as useful as citing me. Don't bother.
     
  14. Nares

    Nares Emperor

    Joined:
    May 2, 2006
    Messages:
    1,631
    That's a whole lot of comma.
     
  15. gaiko

    gaiko Warlord

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2003
    Messages:
    225
    TMIT is correct, it's not an exploit. No more than minimizing beaker loss before the patch by twiddling GSes based on manual calculations was an exploit.

    In fact, the case against exploit is even more convincing for the RA 1 beaker-turn tech lockout mechanic, since this mechanic was clearly intentionally designed into the game. The proof is in the pudding - it's there! Why it is there I can't honestly say, but that doesn't make it a bug. Go check the bug list. If it is not there, propose it as a bug and see what happens.

    The case of the beaker overflow loss could at least be explained away as an "oversight" (which I don't believe it was for a minute, no way this could not have been noticed at initial release time). This was not a bug either, but what we in the software business call an "enhancement request".

    The solution is as simple as allowing beaker overflow: allow RA tech-targeting.

    End of discussion.
     
  16. TheNoodle

    TheNoodle Chieftain

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2010
    Messages:
    63
    or make RA give a random tech and give back beakers already researched into that tech as overflow. Why should that be end of discussion, however, I don't know. Anyone can still post until a mod closes the thread I presume.
     
  17. KrikkitTwo

    KrikkitTwo Immortal

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2004
    Messages:
    12,358
    So there are basically 2 solutions

    1. allow RA tech Targeting (with overflow?).. making it the same as a GS [rebalancing cost may be needed]

    2. make RA totally random with overflow
     
  18. Monthar

    Monthar Deity

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2004
    Messages:
    2,046
    Location:
    Elmendorf, Tx
    Actually there are 3.

    3. Make RA give a bonus to BPT based on the cost of the RA and the average beakers needed for a tech of the era the cost is based on.

    Personally, I'd rather see #3, because it gives at least some benefit from a premature cancellation by either party, removes the need to micromanage the tech tree and takes away any possible exploit with the RA system.

    Edit:
    The average tech cost in the Renaissance is 1057.5 beakers. The cost of a RA when in Renaissance is 250 gold. That's equal to 35.25 BPT over 30 turns for the upfront cost of 250 gold. 250 gold up front equals 8 1/3 gold per turn for 30 turns. This all boils down to 4.23 beakers per gold.

    If option 3 were implemented, with the cost starting at 100, increased by 50 for every era and adjusted to only 3 beakers per gold that would come out to:
    10 BPT for 100 gold (Ancient)
    15 BPT for 150 gold (Classical)
    20 BPT for 200 gold (Medieval)
    25 BPT for 250 gold (Renaissance)
    30 BPT for 300 gold (Industrial)
    35 BPT for 350 gold (Modern)
    40 BPT for 400 gold (Future)

    This RA BPT would be added to the total BPT, not to any city, thus would not get multiplied by any buildings. When you consider the possibility of having 10+ RAs active at a time, there wouldn't be any need to multiply the bonus. After all, 10 RA's in the Future would be a bonus of 400 BPT on top of whatever you're generating with your cities.
     
  19. Seek

    Seek Deity Supporter

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2010
    Messages:
    3,410
    Actually there are 4

    Make the RA mechanic work correctly, ie, what we can easily assume the dev's intentions were: Have a negligible amount of beakers invested in a tech have little effect on the outcome, but make it almost impossible for a tech that's almost finished to pop. See my post (#49) on the previous page for details.:)
     
  20. Monthar

    Monthar Deity

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2004
    Messages:
    2,046
    Location:
    Elmendorf, Tx
    I have no idea how I forgot this one, but I do recall reading the post before.
     

Share This Page