The Ultimate Showdown of Ultimate Economy: FIN vs. ORG

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Strategy & Tips' started by Iranon, Dec 25, 2008.

  1. Iranon

    Iranon Deity Whipping Boy

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    These two traits seem eminently comparable as they directly impact our budget. Judging from most comments and polls on these boards, Financial is widely considered the best traits while opinion is all over the place on ORG - it seems to have a small but dedicated following while a lot of players consider it weak.

    I've looked into this in a few other threads... unfortunately I used some very obsolete data (civic upkeeps used to be cheaper). Here a corrected and expanded version...

    ***

    A formula for the amount of maintenance ORG saves is a little unwieldy, but fortunately it's easily simplified to something more readable.
    Let c be the number of cities, p our total population and let's assume a difficulty level of Emperor+ (on lower levels, there are small player discounts to civic upkeep).

    For all low-upkeep civics we get c+0.2p-1
    For all medium-upkeep civics we get 1.25c+0.3p-1.75
    For the most likely high-upkeep options (Bureaucracy and Organised Religion, rest a mix of medium-cost civics) we get 1.35c+0.34p-2.02

    Fortunately, the rounding errors from simplification tend to cancel out: (for each single civic maintenance cost, we get an expected -1 from rounding down twice. ORG halves this (expected error of -0.5 per civic) and rounds down again (expexted error of +/-0). So while rounding will result in different in-game results from our formulae the effects are likely to be minor and can go in either direction.

    ***

    Now to the important question: How much will the traits do for me? Final results for the effects of the traits are rounded to the nearest integer and ordered by magnitute (without/with Bureaucracy for FIN, low/medium/high-ish civics for ORG).
    I tried to use numbers that were applicable to many games at some point or other... size of individual cities doesn't matter for the calculations, only average size. I decided to go with relatively low values here since things like new conquests, whipping and recent expansions will drag the average down.


    A sample cottage empire:

    7 cottage cities (size 8, 6 commerce tiles each)
    3 production cities (size 8, 2 commerce tiles each)
    1 hybrid capital, (size 10, 6 commerce tiles)
    1 GP farm (size 10, 2 commerce tiles)

    FIN: 56 / 59 additional raw commerce
    ORG: 29 / 43 / 48 pre-inflation maintenance saved



    A specialist empire of roughly comparable size

    1 hybrid capital (size 10, 6 commerce tiles)
    15 miscellaneous cities (size 8, 2 commerce tiles each)

    FIN: 36 / 39 additional raw commerce
    ORG: 41 / 57 / 64 pre-inflation maintenance saved

    ***

    It should be noted that larger and better developed cities make FIN relatively more attractive (as the gains are run through gold/science multipliers and there is no benefit per city, only per tile worked) while ORG becomes more attractive with small/less-developed/production-oriented cities... especially at times where we need to build some of the discounted infrastructure.

    For this reason, I regard Organised a great trait for warmongers/hammer addicts (especially since all high-upkeep civics have something to do with military or production) while FIN is more geared towards the peaceful techer.

    Which one is more valuable might also be map-dependent. I've heard claims that large maps favour ORG which I don't quite understand myself... the effect of both traits scale almost linearly with empire size and small maps make Bureaucracy a lot more attractive which is good for ORG.
    Both traits also have special applicability on water maps... FIN because a lot of questionable tiles become semi-decent, ORG because of the lighthouse discounts and because a Great Lighthouse-fueled trade economy is likely to result in a frenzied founding of individually poor and slow-growing cities at first and inflated citiy sizes later.

    After doing a direct comparison, I was surprised at how well ORG manages to keep up in terms of finance alone, considering it has non-neglegible production benefits and its benefits always apply independent of whether we abuse our economy for more troops or happiness (culture slider).

    ***

    EDIT: The formulae for expected savings from ORG are derived from the Civic Upkeep formulae in the War Academy. Practice seems to differ from that. I've seen a single case of 2 higher and multiple up to 6 lower than the expected value. In practice, ORG will often save 2-4 less than it 'should'.
     
  2. DMOC

    DMOC Mathematician

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    Those two traits can't really be compared, though, as everything depends on the map like you mentioned. After all, a huge empire with farms but no cottages would likely be better off with Organized. But I'm more of a Financial fan. :)
     
  3. Joshua368

    Joshua368 Warmongering builder

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    Financial is much more powerful, but I dislike the trait a lot in practice. Just feels boring and somewhat lazy... your empire is just more powerful, whee. I'd prefer if it was actually about money, such as some free gold per turn or cheaper unit upgrades or something. Organized is definitely my favorite trait, though more for the cheap courthouses and factories rather than slightly less civic costs which I barely notice.
     
  4. Point13

    Point13 Like a ton of bricks!

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    So the moral of the story is that Darius owns everybody's soul?
     
  5. obsolete

    obsolete Deity

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    I don`t understand this. Financial seems to be a static trait, or self-weighted if that`s your fancy. But org becomes exponentially more powerful the higher the level you play at. Just throwing them together in a generic term doesn`t quite seem to make sense.

    Even on deity Org will have JUMP-POINTS where it is or isn`t the end-all of be-all traits.
     
  6. Loki Strikes

    Loki Strikes Prince

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    I agree here with ob, Financial loses significance later in the game with PP and FS, however organized is ALWAYS good. It helps immeasurably in the early game REX, it has saved my skin on multiple occasions when consolidating conquered lands(cheap courthouse + whip + motherland unhappiness = <3) and I find myself consistently having better economies with Asoka than Darius. Financial is a great crutch for learning, but when you know what you are doing, you can supplement this with a combination of intelligent REX, GLH insanity or anything else. IMO the best "economic" civics are org and spiritual.

    And when it comes to difficulty jumps with modifiers galore, its not comparable.
     
  7. obsolete

    obsolete Deity

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    Org has 2 negative jump-points, when you run SP, and when the AI learns CoL. Anyhow, in a current game of mine, Snaaty has no Org or Fin for his leader and is over-stressed at the breaking point. So it may be a good question to ask him which trait he would prefer right now. I suspect Org because he has been busy trying to chop courthouses in his cities AND he will still have to gift me a barb city he`s about to capture because he still can not afford the exponential maintenance fees it will cost.

    And sometimes, getting some extra spy points accumulating that much earlier, can mean the difference of stealing a big tech or revolting at a critical time.
     
  8. bobbyboy29

    bobbyboy29 I was saying boo-urns...

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    Its really hard to do a numbers comparison between the two because traits are multi-faceted, financial is a pretty passive trait and will generally not affect your gameplay style. But the cheap buildings from Org give a much bigger boost, also, in order to leverage Org it pays off to run the higher cost civics which have their own advantages, in a recent game I found that due to being organized and having a large army, I was able to run the science slider higher in vassalage rather than in the default civic:crazyeye: who ever thought vassalage would be an aid to your economy as well as your military? I agree that Fin is more powerful, but I always miss those cheap courthouses more. The solution: play as darius and find yourself some horses!
     
  9. henrebotha

    henrebotha proud Fender owner

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    I don't buy the idea that a 'passive' trait like Fin does not affect your play style. Playing as a Fin leader, I'm far more likely to use a flood plains city as a cottage city than as a GP farm. I'm far more likely to put down 1 commerce improvements on river tiles. I'm far more likely to work water tiles and build the Colossus.

    All traits are equally passive in nature, and all of them affect your play style.

    That said, I lately prefer Org. My biggest mistake is always under-expansion, so of late I've been trying to REX more. Since Org will save me money whether or not I have tons of cottages, it is preferable to Fin, which requires strong commerce cities before it becomes valuable.
     
  10. TheMeInTeam

    TheMeInTeam If A implies B...

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    I don't buy the ORG is better in the REX phase, because it's crap.

    You don't get courthouses or high expense civics at this most crucial period. You have cottages, and are either teching toward monarchy (lower difficulties) or aesthetics and/or CoL to trade (higher). The map isn't always nice about getting you there. FIN wins here, because few of ORG's bonuses are around that early (even if you were to beeline CoL, it's still coming much later than you typically get pottery)...much less gpt saved than a cottage here and there will get you with FIN.

    If you somehow can spam out a ton of cities or capture them then ORG might win, but for normal early REX? No way. The cheap courthouses certainly help, and the wartime civics do also. However, neither of these things are going to pay for extra prime city sites early, and they're not going to get you a higher raw-potential city either.

    The two traits are useful in fundamentally different ways. Comparing them is kind of weak. It's going to depend on the map which even the OP said, and also on how you play.

    If we're talking emp+ it might not be a cakewalk to get 12 cities of any kind, and especially not idealized in such a way. Aside from all that, what's the use in comparing traits that function differently to determine which is better? Outside of selecting one for HoF use or something one would normally just play to the strengths the map tiles give you.
     
  11. oyzar

    oyzar Have quit civ/forums

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    In all but the most extreeme cases Fin generates more money(beakers/gold) than ORG. However there certainly are some cases where org is better. For example in extreeme HOF play where you get as close to going bankrupt as possible and most of your commerce comes from traderoutes and high commerce tiles(+1 commerce on a riverside commerce resource is not as hot as giving it to a riverside cottage). ORG obviously make courthouses more beneficial earlier(especially if you are generating beakers through espionage), however this is often very minor as courthouses aren't actually a good building until you get corps..

    ORG also have a significant non-economic aspect lategame. It allows you to get factories and courthouses at half price. These are the two most important buildings(since plants are so cheap) when running a corp fueled production strategy(obviously with state property ORG loses a lot of it's benefit), this allows org to excell in the lategame. Obviously lategame is often too late to matter in a lot of cases(SP at easy difficulty or hof abuse), however it is still worth mentioning since it can be siginifcant when "just" playing to win(at a high enough difficulty to challenge you or mp against competent opponent).
     
  12. SnowlyWhite

    SnowlyWhite Emperor

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    as a fan of org., fin. is king early game, and early game is king :p

    Settings: fractal, random leader, play now, immortal, marathon.

    I draw a ghandi, I move the warrior 1ne to see 2 grassland gem mines. Since I'm quite comfortable with immortal, the game seemed pretty much in the bag from turn 1. I move the settler, capitol has 2 grassland gems, 1 corn 1 sugar, 4 grassland river tiles. Super start. I explore, find a marble corn site north with excellent production capability and other stuff. And vicky.

    Now, being marathon and being quite clear I'm alone with vicky(she had same ep on me as I had on her) who declares at pleased, was more or less clear I need to rush her(in 400 turns of isolation you're pretty guaranteed to get 1 declaration no matter what you do and I hate keeping a ton of army - also, couldn't get her to friendly easy, especially with my 2nd oracle/confu/confu shrine city putting pressure on 3 of her cities so border tension was high). But the gems and the marble made me greedy and I nab oracle for col before going IW(bronze was only in her territory).

    Vicky's land had exactly 4 nice tiles for a financial civ. - actually 5, but she settled on one of the silks and room for exactly 5 decent(not fabulous) cities. She settled 7, since you know the ai loves to cramp their cities. I get IW, iron online, get 7 swords, 3 axes, 3 spears(had 3 rocking cities, the oracle one poping another gem from a mine) get ready to declare while going aest/lit. Vicky founds juda, I convert, she ain't in war mode. Yet, I get visibility on her research and she was 19 turns to feud with 2 walled cities. Ok, postpone invasion post catapults, especially since most of her cities were already at 40% culture.

    I research, with that super capitol and those 2 good cities(I found 2 more) - aest/lit/maths while she researches... feud, maths, calendar, curr, cs, alpha, was researching aest in 5 turns(1.66 turns normal speed). After bureau switch she was doing mc/machinery in 16 turns(5 turns on normal). My gpt was 116 with super land, hers was 207 with a ton of plains and generally very crappy land(again, the only reason why I wanted to declare was to prevent a chain of declarations from the her).

    What was she doing? Open WB since I really didn't get it. Simply, because of cramping so many cities, she was working a ton of coast. Long term I had room for another 10 good cities(I blocked all the rest of the continent with city #2 and #3), I was going to culturally flip her holy city and already had a another prophet to shrine it(already 30% my culture) and another 2 cities so there was really no competition. Short term - just by working a ton of coast and not whipping too much, a fin civ. was putting up twice my # of beakers.

    another example - do an early rush with ragnar and one with hammu and tell me which one recovers way faster than the other :p
     
  13. tycoonist

    tycoonist Deity

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    financial is the best trait for 80% of maps in my experience.

    don't believe me? fine. you play as napoleon, i'll play as hannibal and we will see who wins
     
  14. Iranon

    Iranon Deity Whipping Boy

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    @ obsolete: ORG seems better for anyone who likes to stretch their economy to the breaking point. FIN sort of defeats the purpose there because you need to work commerce tiles to reap the rewards - and if you were working a decent number of commerce tiles your economy wouldn't be strained in the first place.

    For me, fishing my economy out of the sewer is easier than breaking out of a squeeze on high levels, so abusing my economy sort of becomes the norm unless I'm happy to go with a tiny empire until the Renaissance.

    ***

    Early in the game, when the inflation/commerce multiplier discrepancy isn't going to be very relevant I find the simplified formulae quite helpful. Something approaching medium-cost civics can be had for useful effects very quickly (Rep, Slavery, Organised Religion). With Vassalage or Bureaucracy, we surpass that.
    At ORG saving 1.25 per city and 0.3 per population, that means it will do as much as FIN for a size 6 city working 3 hamlets and 3 non-commerce tiles... and in a mad scramble for more land I'm likely to work less commerce tiles as I also need basic infrastructure (granaries, something for culture, courthouses... possibly forges if at all practical, libraries in cities that are supposed to contribute towards research), workers to connect all those new cities and units to keep the population pacified/defend against barbarians.
    Needing to work more than 3 (average size 6) or 4 (average size of 9) FIN-boosted commerce tiles per city to surpass ORG seems a steep requirement - note that we're looking at average cities period here, not average commerce cities, and also that at the modest size of 6 this means a minimum of 9 commerce per city from tiles alone so the city can't be that much of a drain anyway.

    It's also worth mentioning that in the case of most commerce being used to pay the bills, the advantage of FIN is that its benefits are run through multipliers won't apply for a long time... markets are expensive and usually not priority buildings, and the cities that gain the most of them will have poor production unless they sacrifice a lot of cottage growth.
    Not to forget that Organised leaders will build a higher-priority building more quickly.

    ***

    I'm not sure how to tackle statements that are backed up only by experience and no underlying theory. Playing enough games to have a statistically useful sample would be a chore even for speedy players (I'm not one), and there are a lot of problems with getting unbiased data... we'd need to eliminate Uniques and several other factors and even then we'd only get evidence pertaining to the players in question.

    @ TheMeInTeam: See my points above... even at the cheap default civics we'd need multiple FIN-aided tiles per city to outdo ORG, and hammers might simply be more needed. I really think that ORG is underappreciated because you're not constantly reminded of its benefits in-game as you are with FIN.

    @ snowlywhite: Comparing oneself early with an Immortal AI is bound to lead to skewed results. The AIs also leverage Financial better since they tend to emphasise commerce over production, often to a ridiculous degree.

    Regarding your question: With my preferred playstyle the money is on Hammurabi. I am quite willing to accept stagnation for some time until I have claimed the useful land and have the infrastructure in place, and to recover all the more quickly after that. Being able to cheaply whip courthouses in my new acquisitions is just icing on the cake.

    On the other hand, I wouldn't be surprised if someone who prefers vertical to horizontal expansion and to go for cottages before infrastructure has better results with Ragnar most of the time. I do regard FIN as one of the top traits in the game, I was only arguing that ORG is right up there as well.

    @ tycoonist: There are the small matters of Uniques, possible differences in playskill and chance. If I revisit an old starting save and play it out again (after I forgot most abut the map), I often have wildly different results.

    ***

    One caveat: Many of my examples in my post assumed a playstyle favourable for ORG. Naturally, there are also situations in which it's quite poor. It can't hold a candle to FIN in a total cottage spam, and it's definitely possible to run a consistent SE in which it also sucks (Nationhood and Pacifism are very useful civics with certain styles... replacing 2 high-upkeep civics with no-upkeep ones can literally cut the savings from ORG in half).

    However, in a more balanced economy or in one that emphasises production over commerce or specialists I'd say it can be the best trait in the game.
     
  15. Bleys

    Bleys Deity

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    I am an ORG fan now that I play mostly Emp and Imm games. I didnt think it was stronger than FIN at Monarch and below, though.

    IMHO these 2 more traits that vary based on difficulty (and other things, of course). Because its easier to recover an economy at lower levels, ORG really starts to gain power at higher levels, where players are already familiar with the idea of economic collapse, etc.
     
  16. Jazzmail

    Jazzmail King

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    Org may become better as the game progresses and at diety level, but since the early game is everything, FIN wins.

    There's nothing quite like water food near the capital becoming 3 gold instead of 2 because of FIN. Or having some useless calender resources on irrigated land next to a river, becoming 3 gold+3 food.

    Then getting bronze earlier. Chopping trees earlier.
     
  17. obsolete

    obsolete Deity

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    Hammers are far more important than gold. At least Firaxis was well aware of this, and that is why it is so insanely expensive to gold-rush a wonder. So from this perspective, financial rolls over and dies compared to Spiritual. At least Org lets you get more hammer cities down.
     
  18. Jazzmail

    Jazzmail King

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    A trait that would add 1 hammer for every tile that makes atleast 2, now THAT would really be something.

    Still, faster teching is nothing to sneeze at. FIN can boost your start, where ORG can't.
     
  19. obsolete

    obsolete Deity

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    Starting a golden age in 3000 BC can boost your start too. Doesn`t mean it`s a good idea...
     
  20. Jazzmail

    Jazzmail King

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    Is that even possible?

    Anyway, I'll take an early trait over a late advantage anytime. Turn advantage leads to more turn advantage.
     

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