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The Power of Settled Great Spies

Discussion in 'Civ4 Strategy Articles' started by madscientist, Apr 1, 2008.

  1. obsolete

    obsolete Deity

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    I have everything auto-shifted to engineers when computers hits (for obvious reasons). So to be honest, I'm not 100% certain myself.
     
  2. madscientist

    madscientist RPC Supergenius

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    Settling the GSpy get's you more versatlility against which ever AI has the tech you want. Nothing worse than infiltrating Musa to watch him dogpiled early and stop teching.
     
  3. vanatteveldt

    vanatteveldt Emperor

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    Aren't you computing the total espionage of the 2nd city, rather than the EP gain by placing the Yard there? The gain is equal to the raw #EP, so 53 per turn, which is only 16 EP/t more than the settled GP, which also gives +6 (?) raw beakers per turn.

    Your conclusion still holds: in a dedicated espionage economy, with a high esp slider and little manual research, a second SY helps more than a settled spy. If espionage is a bonus feature, settling is (a lot) better.
     
  4. Bandobras Took

    Bandobras Took Emperor

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    I tried a bit of this with Julius (I wasn't in the mood for a War Game, but the Cheap Courthouses and Forum for improved Great Spy generation looked nice). I've been robbing Gandhi and Pericles blind and we have a common state religion to keep them from attacking me. Extremely useful when combined with even modest manual research.
     
  5. Refar

    Refar Deity

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    The Specialist Slots from obsolete wonders do go away. I.e. the Kremlin is a somewhat short-lived wonder, which i often regard not worth the hammers.

    And @Madscientist - Kremlin are only 2 Slots, not 3.

    Slightly off topic, but as i come to think of it: Why there is no national Wonder for Espionage ? More precise - why isn't SY a national Wonder ? There is one with +100% and 3 Specialist slots for Science, Gold and Production...
    For espionage we have the SY instead - which is imensely powerful with +100% and can be had in multiple instances... Odd.
     
  6. vanatteveldt

    vanatteveldt Emperor

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    For science and (unit) production there are both a GP building and national wonder (Oxf.U/aca & HE/Mil Aca), for normal production, money, and culture only the national wonder (IW, Wall st., Hermitage), and for espionage only the (supersized) GP building.

    The odd thing is that the esp building is twice as powerful as the normal GP buildings, but all espionage modifiers are supersized (specialist and super specialist are more EPs than scientists, buildings are +50 rather than the normal +25, and a number of buildings give free points). It seems that the game values EPs less than gold/beakers/culture
     
  7. Nares

    Nares Emperor

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    I seem to recall SY being a NW at some point prior to Warlords.
     
  8. madscientist

    madscientist RPC Supergenius

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    With BTS, Scotland yard is the "special Building" of the Great Spy. Similar to the Prophet shrine, the Scientist academy, the Artists great Work, or teh Engineer rush build.

    The Great Spy cannot bulb a tech, but I believe this is made up for by teh infiltrate mission.
     
  9. DaveMcW

    DaveMcW Deity

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    What is so good about Representation?

    It gives 30:science: or so from your spies, but Universal Suffrage or Police State is potentially worth more depending on your strategy. Even Hereditary Rule could be better due to its low upkeep.
     
  10. madscientist

    madscientist RPC Supergenius

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    Good point.

    My thinking is representation early to double the output of the settled spy, however since we are excluding a SE from this strategy it is a dumb idea to adopt representation. It also would require the pyramids which dilute teh GSpy pool.

    Thanks, I'll remove it!
     
  11. madscientist

    madscientist RPC Supergenius

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  12. Gr8scott

    Gr8scott Warlord

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    I've experimented with infiltrate vs. SY for the first spy. If you are planning on running a full espionage economy (i.e. EP slider as high as possible / cottage capital), then the deciding factor has almost always been game level.

    <emperor ==> Scotland Yard is best
    immortal ==> Scotland Yard == infiltration
    Deity ==> infiltration is best

    The major difference is how fast the AIs tech. On emperor and below, you get enough EPs from your SY powered capital to steal what you need. At these levels, EPs from infiltration often rot for centuries before you can use them. At deity; however, infiltration can give you enough of a shot in the arm to give you a chance. There are plenty of things to steal at deity as long as you can make the spies.

    GS
     
  13. obsolete

    obsolete Deity

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    GE Pollution is not a bad thing. It is a very nice thing to have. But I have something else I want to point out.

    I don't quite agree with the SETTLE --> SY bit.

    If I am forced to make a SY early, I will go 2 settles first. A GS gives 4b 12s.

    Now let's say we had 2 of them. Your system gives...

    [ Will refresh math equations here later...]

    Alright, and when we pop our scientist early due to the science pollution (not that it's a bad thing), we are obviously running an academy. So your 2 settled get another superior boost where the SY loses out. Oh, and did I forget to mention libraries come pretty early?

    Now, the fact that you will try to have extra running scientists does fubber that up a little bit, but you are not going to be running a lot of scientists early, and even what little slots you have will not likely be running ALL the time.

    I know because even when I have double powered priests, I end up constantly sending them to the mines & workshops when the heavy-duty stuff comes in, as I am on a very tight schedule. And while your spy city may not have to worry about such hefty projects, the fact that running spies are eating up food but not contributing any hammers means you are going to be very hammer poor, and hence probably have to keep removing it for certain war-units, internal structures, etc.

    Anyhow, during the night I decided to do another EARLY spy-econ test on deity. It was a total failure. Actually, it didn't even get off the ground, literally. Just after 3000bc rolled around, someone ended up grabbing the wall. I even restarted the map a few times changing my orders between 1 worker, 2 workers, etc to try and see if it could in theory still be guaranteed to work. Not a chance. There wasn't any possible way a human player could get the GW that early.

    Of course, not EVERY deity game has the GW go that soon. But it is going to definitely alter the feasibility there.
     
  14. madscientist

    madscientist RPC Supergenius

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    1 settled GSpy get's 3 beakers, 12 eps +2 courthouse, +4 palace = 18 eps

    2 settled GSpy get's 6 beakers, 24 eps +2 courthouse, +4 palace = 30 eps

    1 settled GSpy _ SY 3 beakers, 12 eps +2 eps, +4 eps * 100 = 36 eps

    Add a jail (+4 ep) 2 settled = 34* 50% = 51 eps
    Add a jail (+4 ep) 1 settle/SY = 22*1.5 = 51 eps

    So an apparent slight advantage to settled/SY, and irrelevent to jail. Except, SY comes out way ahead when Spy specialists are run.
     
  15. Cofuffle

    Cofuffle Chieftain

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    you stole MS twice :mischief:

    may as well use this to say how much i enjoy your RPC's even if I just lurk and nitpick once a year ^^
     
  16. madscientist

    madscientist RPC Supergenius

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    Thanks Couffle, for the correction and following the RPCs.

    The first one was Military Tradition, I'll correct it.
     
  17. obsolete

    obsolete Deity

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    I see where the confusion all started. Under Rep. a running spy gives 4 beakers. I should stop doing math after 24 hours of no sleep.

    Anyhow, I decided to play another deity map and give things another shot. Again this was a catastrophe. I found out, that I ended up being the ONLY ONE on my continent! I guess you can imagine, this is the worst possible strategy for this scenario. So chalk that up as another loss and severe penalty for this system.

    I started yet a third deity map, I'm nearing the end game but despite a great spy based capital, I am just so hopelessly behind now in tech. Even if I can somehow stop egypt from getting a cultural vic (how do you stop that with spies?), I don't see how I can catch up in space ship production unless a miracle happens. And I can't easily sabotage the AI who are off on other continents. So again, this strategy seems to not be viable on non-pangae maps unless you have a lot of luck.
     
  18. BalbanesBeoulve

    BalbanesBeoulve Emperor

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    You can stop cultural victories with espionage by keeping a city in a constant state of revolt. Also destroying it's cathedrals and other culture buildings.

    And in a way transcontinental espionage is easier because if you keep your spies on ships they don't get discovered, which is kind of exploiting a bug, but whatever.
     
  19. mystyfly

    mystyfly Knight of Cydonia

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    BTW 12 + 2 + 4 = 18 :rolleyes:
     
  20. obsolete

    obsolete Deity

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    There seems to be a bug with the amount of breakers I get from spies. I think it's more of a display bug. Sometimes it shows me the total value when rep is running, and sometimes it wont show the total when rep is running. It is supposed to show it just before you absorb the unit on the left side of the screen, but it's wishy washy. I first noticed this bug after an upgrade, though I thought it was fixed now, but seems not to be.
     

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