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The problems of conquest

Discussion in 'Civ5 - Strategy & Tips' started by commandermerik, Sep 24, 2010.

  1. commandermerik

    commandermerik Chieftain

    Jun 23, 2010
    Once an empire grows too big, everything goes down hill. I play on prince mode and I have yet to advance to the modern era. I normally will take a bit of time to gain some footing in the beginning of each game before I start growing my military. To be honest, I don't like the other forms of advancing through the game since war is just so fun to me. Conquring those who annoy me, being safe from barbarians, and simply just walking around with the biggest stick is much more prefiable to being seen as weak, or a as a target.

    That being said, I have trouble managing it all. I usually have three to four cities before I feel comfortable enough to growing my military since I need both the money and resources to support them. However once I reach six or seven cities I find myself unable to keep things up. I need to have enough military units to keep my cities safe as my main army fights out on the front, but it seems to just be too expensive. Once I have a few conqured cities, the unhappiness and money spent on them just kills me. Razing the cities aren't even always the option for some reason leaving me to be forced to annex a city I don't want.

    If you didn't read the above, here's the summery: Conquest is very expensive. How do I support it, and/or when should I start it? What are good policies to adopt so that I can keep my economy stable? I try my best with using trading posts and building commerce increasing buildings, but it seems there isn't an easy fix to a failing economy.
  2. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam GiftOfNukes

    Jan 26, 2008
    I have no trouble sweeping a good chunk of the world using only swordsmen + the honor line. 3-5 swords will mop any city below 20+ str (even a bit above) with GG support - all "safe" attacks. Heal then hit the next.
  3. Duo

    Duo Stay out of my territory.

    Feb 24, 2010
    If you really want to win conquest just use greece with companion cavalry on pangaea. I guess that's a little cheesy. It seems pretty easy to just chain puppet everything with Greece. I've only done this once though. My science absolutely skyrocketed, and my treasury and happiness were alright.
  4. DarkMaster

    DarkMaster Chieftain

    Jan 6, 2006
    My only problem is unhapiness. I'm playing as Napoleon right now and even with Forbidden Palace + Planned Economy (no unhapinness at all from cities) My crazy expansion is kicking me in the nuts. What should I do? There's only so many luxury resources and new cities take too much time to build happiness buildings, but setting them as puppet states still brings my hapiness down!
  5. jauggy

    jauggy Chieftain

    Dec 18, 2008
    Raze cities that are not capitals and that don't have any useful hapiness resources.
  6. Thyrwyn

    Thyrwyn Guardian at the Gate

    Jan 5, 2004
    State College, PA
    My keys to mass conquest & managing your economy are:

    1) Only found 4-5 cities on your own.

    2) All conquered cities become Puppets.

    3) Around your Puppets - develop any resources but build Trading Posts in every other hex. Puppets like to build culture & happy buildings (good), and a lot of useless other stuff - denying them hammers, keeps your building maintenance down.

    3a) When your economy is flush, and you have the happy room, you can annex 1 or 2 promising puppets if you need them.

    4) Make sure you have roads connecting all of your cities to your capital. Pillage any unnecessary roads.

    5) Don't keep/build too many Workers. They cost upkeep. Initially, 1/city is probably OK, but once you start conquering, 1/(2 cities) is probably better.

    6) Avoid Declaring War on City States. If you do this too often, they will all declare war on you. Also: Maritime CS provide free food, which means your core cities can work more hammer tiles; Culture CS provide culture, which means you won't have to build the more expensive culture buildings; Military CS provide units, which saves you hammers.

    My current game (only on Prince, admittedly), I am playing as France on a Large Continents Map (Epic speed, 2 extra AI, 4 extra CS). I built 4 cities, conquered 12, and later annexed 2 of those (I needed coastal cities). It is 1860; I am about to research Steam Power. I am bringing 250+ beakers, 160+ gold, 320+ culture each turn. I did pursue the Patronage Branch, and have allied myself with every every Culture CS on the map. 1000 gold gets me 90 influence, which decays at .56/turn - roughly 160 turns of alliance. I can ally on CS every 7 turns. With my current economy, I could conceivably keep 22+ CS as allies.

    I have unlocked Tradition (Aristocracy), Liberty (Full), Honor (Discipline, Military Caste), Patronage (All but Educated Elite). Next Policy will cost ~5500, and they are increasing at ~500 each. I am getting a new policy every 22 turns or so.

    I will probably take the dilpo or culture wins, whichever comes first.
  7. Gaizokubanou

    Gaizokubanou Chieftain

    Jan 15, 2006
    You cannot raze cities that were once capitals (even city states).

    Conquest is getting expensive for you because your core cities are not profitable enough. You want all your core cities to be slim as possible (build only things that are essential) and spam tradepost to make them profitable except for one or 2 production cities.
  8. erragal

    erragal Chieftain

    Sep 17, 2010

    1) I just did a conquest game as Aztecs (Large map, King Difficulty, Normal Speed, Terra) and only did 3 of my own cities, never saw a need for any more, took two early city states with good resources.

    2) I took good capitals as annexes instead of cities 4 and 5. Using them for production bases across the continent allows you to manage smaller empire hubs.

    The key to conquering is getting early capitals with archers/spearman and dinging early iron working for swords. Settle the second city near lots of hills and you can almost ensure swords. Save your gold for upgrading warriors to swords. I try to research husbandry and trade off horses to non threatening civ's.

    Most importantly: leave civs alive with their last city or even two. They're important sources of gold that helps catapult you into nonstop expansion. As you take capitals, you'll control multiples of several resources and you can swing that into massive gold gain by trading with these leftover players, as well as the ones you haven't conquered yet.

    As mentioned before (By Jauggy): raze cities with no useful luxuries, puppet good cities is the rule. For long range expansion annexing good capitals can allow you to pop out frontline units with all the gold you're pulling in.

    On city-states, taking a couple early before they develop relationships with other civs as they usually have luxury resources. Then just ally with culture/maritime ones when your gold is pouring in.

    It's incredible how you can use early conquest with military oriented tech focusing to develop a massive empire that incidentally gives you huge culture and science. It's really awesome to behold. Just don't tech sailing! Wasted research. Quick focused swordsman is the way to dominate, with a few archers in support.

    I prefer going focused honor tree to get Military Tradition as fast as possible. All that experience will help, especially if you need the occasional instant heal.

    I wonder if the reason this is so effective is upgraded Jaguars with the 2 heal per kill they keep. This made it easier to keep taking cities without waiting.

    My game is at 1060 AD with only 4 other capitals left. The most developed of these is still fielding swordsman while I have longswordsman and knights, which is a huge difference when you throw in all the bonuses you're getting. At this point I should have the remaining capitals by 1400/1500 AD without ever needing anything above a knight. It's a very powerful strategy.

    Other notes: Using additional Great Generals and non-Great Scientists for Golden Ages will had a huge part in helping to fund my conquest. As your empire gets bigger you can spend all the gold you're bringing in to rush buy happiness buildings (This is the other reason to start annexing towards the end of your conquests)
  9. Bibor

    Bibor Doomsday Machine

    Jun 6, 2004
    Zagreb, Croatia
    I think you're missing the point of conquests. Your economy should be fine without enemy cities. Conquests serve only to weaken the opponent and for some cities to be eventually integrated into your core cities (otherwise razed or liberated). Only liberating city-states is pure benefit.

    Look at what the AI is doing. It has only 5-7 core cities, the rest are puppets.

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