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 Precise Order of City Builds and Technology Acquisition

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Strategy & Tips' started by floydmcw, Oct 5, 2020.

  1. Pangaea

    Pangaea Rock N Roller

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2010
    Messages:
    5,618
    Odd discussion. This is the main point IMO. It's not about hammer efficiency of slavery vs slow-build, but about getting the units faster and then improve your empire faster.
     
  2. sampsa

    sampsa Ghost

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2006
    Messages:
    2,629
    Location:
    Finland
    Why is it an odd discussion though? Well, besides the claim "the conventional wisdom that whipping workers or settlers is particularly advantageous is false". Why does :hammers: efficiency of slavery vs slow build seem unimportant to you? Odd comment. ;)
     
    drewisfat and Shikhar Agrawal like this.
  3. Pangaea

    Pangaea Rock N Roller

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2010
    Messages:
    5,618
    Because it sidesteps the clear advantage about whipping a worker or settler.
     
  4. civac

    civac Warlord

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2010
    Messages:
    188
    Without a granary only the first whipped settler is faster. All subsequent ones are later.
     
  5. drewisfat

    drewisfat Prince

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2011
    Messages:
    526
    I'm sticking with Sampsa. The unique advantage about whipping a worker and a settler is the growth component. The fact that you get the worker and settler faster is an advantage that is true of everything you whip, and an advantage that varies wildly depending on the situation. That may be the difference maker in why a pre-granary whip makes sense, but isn't the reason that rushing settlers and workers in general is good practice.
    It's more important for a city with corn & wheat to grow for 5 turns than to get a cottage 5 turns earlier. A cherrypicked example but not an unreasonable one since we improve the best tiles first.
     
    gavenkoa likes this.
  6. sampsa

    sampsa Ghost

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2006
    Messages:
    2,629
    Location:
    Finland
    I get your point, just dumbing it down to "whipping gets it done faster" is in practice good enough. Me and a few other posters got interested in the details.
     
  7. soundjata

    soundjata Be like water

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2011
    Messages:
    1,735
    So we talking the importance of growing cities, which would seem like a valid strategy a priori.

    Let's discard for a moment :commerce:, :science:, :gp: and such bizarre stuff :scan:

    Now the city is a hammer producing machine ( :food: is the input, while :hammers: is the output).

    For the sake of the exercise, let's imagine that 1:food: = 1:hammers: !


    Hypothesis #1 : city does not whip.

    every turn you put :food: in the machine and the city does not grow, the :food: is wasted : no :hammers: gain :sad:
    But when the city grows, you could be working an extra brown mine (+4:hammers: )

    So hurray ! Growth has made my city machine spit out an extra +4:hammers: / turn :dance:
    I had to invest quite a few :food: in the machine though... 22 :food: if the city was size one to begin with.

    How many turns does it take for the investment to pay back ?

    - If we could pay cash for the 22:food:, then It'd be 5,5 turn payback time (=22/4 because 1:food:=1:hammers: )
    Unfortunately there is no sushi and we need to grow like a real size 1 city.

    - If the city is growing on an oasis (+3:food: per turn), it will take 8 turns to grow to size 2 and work that shiny brown mine. So 8 turns investing food + 5,5 turns payback...
    14 turns (rounded up obviously) before cash-in.

    - If the city is growing on a wet-corn (+6:food: per turn), it will take 4 turns to grow to size 2
    10 turns before cash in.


    Hypothesis #2 : city can whip. Grows on a monument.

    when the city reaches size 2, it can whip the monument for an instant 30 :hammers: gain, which is more than the investment (22:food:). Instant payback!

    - Oasis case : 8 turns before cash-in
    - Wet corn case : 4 turns.


    So. Yeah, if you like your hammers slow :
    - Don't grow too fast
    - Don't whip

    :lol:
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2020
  8. sampsa

    sampsa Ghost

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2006
    Messages:
    2,629
    Location:
    Finland
    :lol:
     
  9. gavenkoa

    gavenkoa Warlord

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2019
    Messages:
    296
    Gender:
    Male
    It is fixable (2T for whip or slow building of Workers/Settlers) by micro-management:

    * giving food other cities temporarily
    * work specialists (2:food:->3:science:3:gp:)
    * work mines (2:food:->6:hammers:), automated governor uses this option if surplus mines are available
    * ???
     
  10. sampsa

    sampsa Ghost

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2006
    Messages:
    2,629
    Location:
    Finland
    Good idea, when slow building a worker/settler :food:-surplus should be given to cities that benefit from it.
    Well, only if that city will generate a :gp:. If it is in the process of doing so, you should probably not be building workers/settlers in that city.
    2:food:->6:hammers: is not correct really, because the citizen working the tile eats 2:food:. It's -2:food:+6:hammers: which transforms into 4:hammers: (=2:hammers: per mine) when building a worker/settler. True, they are better when building workers/settlers than they otherwise are. That doesn't mean they (mines) are worth building though, because worker turns are not infinite.
     
  11. Nick723

    Nick723 Chieftain

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2020
    Messages:
    87
    Gender:
    Male
    A slightly different take on the whipping vs build thesis...tear it apart please!

    Starting premise: Sustainably a city can whip once every 10 turns. Beyond this, whip anger exceeds the cool off, and unhappy faces will build up. For the moment let’s assume we want to avoid this.

    For a city on a 4->2 whip cycle, whipping every 10 turns.
    - 60 hammers produced every 10 turns, or an average of 6 per turn (plus of course, any hammers from tiles worked). For now let’s assume we are growing on unforested grassland, so it’s just the city centre tile contributing.
    - without a granary, we need 50 food to grow from size 2 to size 4, or an average food surplus of 5 food/turn.
    - with a single 5 food source (eg dry corn), working otherwise food neutral tiles, this lines up perfectly.
    - a size 4 city working the dry corn and 3 mines (two brown, one green) can sustainably output 11 hammers per turn. Quite a bit better!
    - a granary doesn’t help the whipping option, since the limiting factor is not food, but the whip counter.

    For a city on a 6->3 whip cycle, whipping every 10 turns.
    - 90 hammers produced every 10 turns, or an average of 9 per turn
    - to grow without a granary, we need 84 food, or an average of 8.4 food surplus per turn. To get there, we need double food or some farms. Or, we could get a granary, which brings the surplus down to 4.2 per turn. Now more straightforward to achieve with the dry corn.
    - a size 6 city working the dry corn and 5 (green) mines can produce 15 hammers per turn.

    Conclusions:
    - in a sustainable state, mines out produce whipping
    - granaries help a city move from a 4->2 whip cycle to a 6->3 cycle
    - efficiency of food -> hammers is not the only relevant comparison for whipping if you have to manage a happy cap

    Why is whipping still so great?
    - mines have to be build. So many worker turns required
    - ‘unsustainable whipping’ - later on in the game, it’s very easy to be on a 6->3 whip cycle for a long time (building up unhappiness) without overdoing the happy cap
     
  12. gavenkoa

    gavenkoa Warlord

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2019
    Messages:
    296
    Gender:
    Male
    That way you/I learn!

    Usually it is OK to exchange anger for production. Like your capital has natural 5 Pop limit or consider you've got Gems/Gold/Silver/Fur/Ivory...

    Like with 4->2 whip & 5 Pop limit you can sustain some 8T long whip cycles before you hit penalty on 3Pop. There is no penalty at 2Pop and during growth to 3Pop the anger is lowering. For 8T cycle you spend ~4T at 2Pop so can afford 3 whip cycles before hitting angry limits at size 3:

    * on final 3rd cycle you start with 2Pop (for max 5) and 14T of anger, 4T later you are at size 3 and anger 10T
    * on 4th cycle with 2Pop and 16T anger, grow to size 3 after 4T and get 12T anger - lose food for 2 T ((

    Depending on whip parameters (X->Y Pop, food surplus, max happiness) you can get away with anger for several whip cycles.
     
    Nick723 likes this.
  13. gavenkoa

    gavenkoa Warlord

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2019
    Messages:
    296
    Gender:
    Male
    Pre-granary whips are suck that can be should by rough estimations, yours is an example. You make that worker/settler/granary with whip only for the snowball effect. Like making worker 4T earlier means 20H from chop ))

    After the granary things are changing. I'm working on simulations in browser (so any could play with it without program installation) to avoid routing calculations or dumb in game clicking.

    Brown mines are awful, green mines are good. They are equal when you build Settler/Worker.

    So in case if you don't have green and have idle Worker plains mine might help with Settler (better to get +4H from plains mine then +3H=2F1H from forest or +2H=2F from cottage).
     
  14. sampsa

    sampsa Ghost

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2006
    Messages:
    2,629
    Location:
    Finland
    For me, the talk about whipping cycles has always felt strange. In practice, I whip when I either am ready to 2-pop a worker or 3-pop a settler (i.e. 1T invested, size 4 or 6 respectively), have grown into unhappiness or have grown to work weak tiles. If the anger is growing unbearable, slow build a settler/worker or run specialists.
     
    shakabrade, Nick723 and gavenkoa like this.
  15. coanda

    coanda Emperor

    Joined:
    May 12, 2009
    Messages:
    1,686
    If you have something like a granary, 2 plains mines, a grass mine, and an improved dry corn to work with (which is what I believe you're assuming for the steady-state), you could do:

    • Whip (60 hammers)
    • 3 turns @ size 2, corn + grass mine (9 hammers)
    • 6 turns @ size 3, corn + grass mine + plains mine (42 hammers)
    • 1 turn @ size 4, corn + grass mine + 2x plains mines (11 hammers)
    • Total 122 hammers, as opposed to 110 from simply sitting at size-4 the whole time without whips.
     
    gavenkoa likes this.
  16. shakabrade

    shakabrade Praise Vivec!

    Joined:
    May 23, 2011
    Messages:
    2,008
    Location:
    Croatia
    I fail to see commerce factored into anything here. Sometimes you have nothing good to whip because you lack the tech. Sometimes getting a crucial tech (pottery, writing, Currency after an early rush, or in Isolation or relative isolation) prevented me from whipping 1F2C tiles. You are happy to keep your happy cap, population and work more commerce tiles in those cases.:D I will often even grow 1-2 sizes into unhappiness before whipping if city is food commerce rich and hammer poor.(as food is still the only way to get hammers) I can also say it was actually often as I used to play bad starts at some phase of civving exclusively. What I want/try to say is that focusing on hammer efficiency with no strategic goal in mind can lead you to very difficult situations. Do not forget that. In lower level games you can push that efficiency very far and put it into an Oracle, but on higher levels Imm+ you are very unlikely to get it and could need to balance those hammers with some commerce.
    Also, I missed the fact that it is possible to whip and regrow building workers and settlers the same turn if your food bin will be full after the whip. True story.

    I mostly focused on identifying roadblock in the game soon enough before I hit them and that allowed me to be very consistent player even with pretty mediocre micro. Play various settings and train your neural network. Use micro advice as an advice not a rule.
     
    sampsa and Pangaea like this.
  17. gavenkoa

    gavenkoa Warlord

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2019
    Messages:
    296
    Gender:
    Male
    Definitely.

    With Financial leader I see benefit to invest food surplus into coastal 3C, instead of working forest or green mine. To get to Pottery/Bronze/Writing/Animal Husbandry quicker.

    Earlier you open so many impactful techs, you have to balance worker/settler vs tech 2-3 T earlier.

    Some resources make you less to worry about commerce though, like Gold mine.

    I've seen that but wasn't sure abut conditions. Does it means you have to miss N*(1-2F) before Granary is full where N is the whip size?

    We usually whip at granary regrow start (like 4->2 for worker, 6->3 for settler). no one will wait for 15->29F filling a few turns for that neat trick ))
     
  18. gavenkoa

    gavenkoa Warlord

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2019
    Messages:
    296
    Gender:
    Male
    Weird idea: you plan 27/28/29F (not sure about 26F which is a requirement for 3Pop regrow) for your 5 Pop and with carefully timed chops do 5->3Pop whip on Settler + automatic city grow 3->4Pop. It seems it will be 2 whip only not 5->3 but 5->4, won't it?
     
  19. civac

    civac Warlord

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2010
    Messages:
    188
    You need to be at 2*N food away from growing for this to work. If you have a lot of food surplus it is viable. Say you want to whip a worker and have grown to size 4 at 16/28. With +8 food surplus you can wait just one turn then whip 4->2 and regrow to 3 the same turn even though that turn the worker finishes. However, you are still not gaining any food in the two turns the worker is started and whipped. So the only advantage is use of 1 tile you are willing to whip away anyway for 1 turn, maybe a strong production or commerce tile in the best case, at the cost of one worker turn. That's relatively minor.
     
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2020
    sampsa and gavenkoa like this.
  20. Pangaea

    Pangaea Rock N Roller

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2010
    Messages:
    5,618
    It's minor, but still nice when it happens. Maybe you whipped away farms or cottages, and get one back "for free". Tiny snowballs. A snowball is better than a guy with pen and paper trying to compute when it's most efficient to start collecting snow for a snowball. Now he must wipe his face.
     

Share This Page