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The Winston Churchill Strategy

Discussion in 'Civ4Col - Strategy & Tips' started by Blind Side, Dec 16, 2011.

  1. Blind Side

    Blind Side Chieftain

    Dec 11, 2011
    “We shall fight them on the beaches…” Winston Churchill June 4, 1940.

    I have not seen this overall strategy set out on the forum so I thought I would outline it for those that have tried others and may want to try a new one or folks new to the game. I have employed this strategy at all levels in Colonization and it has served me well. I have found it works with both the “monarchy” and “democracy” option though I typically employ the monarchy option and this piece is geared toward selecting monarchy.

    First let me apologize on how long this is. In some areas I wanted to be very specific and in general I am a very wordy person….

    The end goal in this strategy is to defeat every REF unit in the squares they land on the turn they land. In order to accomplish this you will need tons of dragoons that deploy to your east coast city ready to crush the landings. To have all the dragoons you will need you are going to have to buy lots of horses and guns and transport them to your colony. In order to afford all of those guns and horses you are going to have to have a massive finished goods trade going on with Europe. In order to create all of those dragoons you are going to need to pick “all men are free” and have lots of towns.

    Initial Phase

    You are looking for a good coastal city location that is: close to the European trade route, has three water squares, and has at least one good lumber producing square adjacent to it. Settle it with your soldier and move your pioneer to the forest square and build a lodge. The town should build: dock, warehouse, lumber mill. Check the Europe display and if there is a seasoned scout send your ship back to Europe immediately and when the hurry him drops to 80 and buy him and get him back to your colony to explore. If there is not a seasoned scout hope there is a carpenter if so buy him when the price falls to 60. If neither then your ship can do some exploring and head to Europe arriving when the first “free” unit shows up on the dock. If you have enough funds to hurry others and there are experts then buy them.

    Once you have a population of 2 in your colony, have one making lumber and the other in carpenter role. As soon as you can you will want an expert lumberjack and two expert carpenters working in the city. The third colonist you get should produce food for your colony. Before setting about making finished goods in your first town take the fourth colonist and found another town as close as is possible to your initial town but not on the coast. Build warehouse, stockade, then political points (you are trying to get at least Minuet. Set your pioneer to building a road between the two and interrupt building the lumber mill to build a wagon. After completing the lumber mill set about building the shop level of the commodity you are producing.

    Now here is where I differ from many posters on this forum (as I hate to spend hours on moving wagons around) I automate all wagons by having the initial town import all raw materials (excluding food and lumber) and import cloth; and setting each new town to export all of those items immediately upon founding the town. Once you have more than three towns a good rule of thumb is to have at least the number of wagons be one more than the number of towns – more if the towns are far apart.

    Your scout should take the veteran 1, and surgeon promotions (after that take what you like).

    Early Phase to Mid Phase (Go west young man…)

    Keep developing the production of finished goods in by upgrading colonists to specialists and shops to factories. Buy a second ship when the first starts falling behind transporting the goods for sale. Upgrade your warehouse and build a printing press as well. Put an Elder statesman and upgrade untrained colonists in native villages.

    What else happens in this phase depends to a good degree on how your intended option on DoI (monarchy versus democracy).

    If you intend on choosing monarchy you are going to want a good west coast port city. The way I get there is continue building new towns with a farmer, if I can, as close as possible to the west of existing towns in areas that do not tick off the natives. A hardy pioneer is assigned to exclusively build a road that connects the east coast city to newly settled towns in one long line as straight as the natives allow driving west. Other pioneers improve the 2-3 squares around these towns you are using. The populations of these towns do not need to exceed 2 or 3 unless the resources adjacent call for more. Once you get to the west coast settle it with a fisherman send a Master Carpenter and a lumberjack and build dock, warehouse, lumbermill, expanded warehouse, then go for improvements to allow the building merchantmen. If you cannot see where the entry point to where the European trade is build a caravel and go exploring to find the closest and ONLY the closest point of entry on the west map edge.

    If you intend on choosing democracy the play is the same except that you west coast port city is not needed what is needed instead is a tool / gun producing city (lots of ore locally available with expert miners, and master blacksmiths and gunsmiths AND a horse producing city (all farmers farming developed plots once the buildings needed are complete with two ranchers). In these towns do not set the automated trade to send the ore to your east coast port city. These towns will substitute for European trade after DoI and I will leave you to your imagination on how to use them rather than going into more detail.

    In this phase I try to keep the adjacent natives happy by gifting them what they want (except guns or horses). If all they want is guns or horses I gift them some trade goods every 3-4 turns. I also take Pocahantas if I get there first. I keep the natives so happy that they start gifting me their villages which when I accept makes them only happier. As these settlements start getting gifted close to the east coast city it all plays into the overall strategy. If you have kept the natives this happy then it is easy to expand the number of towns you have by sending farmers to settle within your expanding area of influence. These towns also maintain a population of 1-3 using additional colonists produced there to found new towns or train at close by native settlements. Link your existing road network to these new towns. If you are getting enough political points then build armories after warehouse and stockade.

    Mid to Late Phase

    By this point you should have three factories in you main east coast city (population of 20+) staffed by three experts in the field. You should also have 2 merchantmen travelling back and forth continually to Europe with finished goods (and often silver). 2-3 Elder Statesmen should be in the town hall, with a newspaper in the city, all water tiles staffed by fishermen, 2-3 Master carpenters and a lumberjack (bring in more lumber with an un-automated wagon or specifically set one wagon to haul nothing but lumber into the city). It should be fortified with a couple of cannons and around three soldiers, have a fortress and have 300 guns and 300 horses in the warehouse.

    Your west coast city should also be well developed and ready to produce at least merchantmen.

    Have a few spare wagons that are not automated and have the ships return with just enough tools to supply you east and west coast cities at first and then drop off just enough tools in every town to be able to build a printing press and set off on building it (typically interrupting the construction of the armory).

    A few more spare wagons will also be needed because as soon as you have a pretty well developed economy the merchantmen will be returning with 200 guns and 200 horses. Or 100 / 100 if that is all that is affordable that trip. You want to start this before your taxes get too high (with this strategy of heavy trade by the end of the game taxes usually exceed 65%). Transport exactly 100 horses and 100 guns to each and every town. As new towns are created get 100 of each there ASAP.

    Your scout should now be in your east coast city with the surgeon promotion.

    Final Stage Pre-Independence

    The point you are trying to get to is best stated by the formula: Number of towns with 100 guns and 100 horses multiplied by 2 is at least equal to or greater than the number of ships in the REF multiplied by 3.20. Note there is no need to worry about how many REF land forces (Dragoons, Infantry, and Artillery) there are. More simply put: Multiply the number of ships in the REF by 1.6 and that is how many towns you will need with guns and horses.

    Once you have that you need to be able to maintain it until you can declare independence. I typically have a number of wagons spread throughout my colony each with 100 horses and 100 guns and when the REF increases its number of ships I send an untrained colonist to any square I can and create a new town that is also near a road which almost immediately is stocked with guns and horses. Try to keep these as close as you can to your east coast city, but preferably not on the coast unless within a dragoon’s attack range from within your east coast city

    The West Coast City should be building merchantmen and leaving them in its port.

    Declaration of Independence

    I almost always declare independence the turn on which I have 50% rebel sentiment as the King’s forces increase dramatically after that point.

    When rebel sentiment gets to the mid 40s take the following steps to prepare for the declaration (early 40s if rebel sentiment is really exploding):

    -Build wagon trains in all towns that have a printing press;
    -Send the merchantman in Europe to the west coast rather than back to the east coast taking guns and horses;
    -Fill the merchantman in your east coast city one more time and send to Europe;
    -Automatic trade in your East Coast City should then be set to continue the import of raw materials but export: silver, cloth, coats, cigars and rum;
    -Automate trade in your West Coast City to continue to export raw materials but import silver, cloth, coats, cigars and rum;
    -each merchantman that trades in Europe now returns to the west coast city.

    Declare Independence and pick: monarchy, all men are free, native rights, controlled arms and freedom of religion. This pick keeps the natives happy and increases rebel sentiment rapidly which improves your attack odds.

    Cycle through every town and turn the two newly “freed” indentured servants into dragoons. Immediately send every dragoon thus created to your east coast city. You should have lots!

    When the REF lands a good number of dragoons should either be in your east coast city or within striking distance. Attack and keep attacking even though you suffer losses. First take out everything adjacent to your east coast city. Then go after all the other units that have landed. Heal each surviving unit right after its attack and is back in the east coast city. If it cannot make it back in the same turn move it inland one square then head it back. Re-automate all the wagons that were nearby. Let the rest of the dragoons keep heading to the east coast city.

    Continue to defeat each wave as they land. In later waves you may have to use a slightly depleted dragoon to take out artillery or REF units that have taken some damage. Keep the full strength ones to attack full strength REF dragoons. Attack with your cannons and infantry only when there is a depleted multiple unit stack adjacent to your city. Wait on attaching any Great General as long as you can (like right before you have to start attacking with a depleted unit or when you have had each dragoon attack once) and when you do attach him attach him to your scout first with additional Great Generals attaching themselves to the infantry or canons.

    Typically promotions seem to work best for me if first Vet1, followed by 80% Vet2 / 20% surgeon, followed by formation then charge.

    Keep an eye on your west coast port city and when you can fill a merchantman send it to Europe off the west coast. Bring back guns and horses and tools as you can.

    At some point the REF will land somewhere else other than near your east coast city. How quickly you have to deal with that will depend on how many REF dragoons are in that group, how threatening the attack is and how well you have faired beating those that have landed considering how many dragoons you have left and how many REF forces can land while you deal with the threat. I typically send at a minimum enough force to take out the dragoons, then allow them to heal before going after the infantry and canons.

    When the merchant ships start arriving on the west coast send the guns and horses to towns with a free colonist that can be turned into a dragoon. Alternatively you can turn your west coast city and nearby towns into free colonist producing mecas by importing just enough food to create a free colonist every turn and then turning them into dragoons. I often find that these dragoons are enough to deal with the diversionary attack that the REF employees. Of course if your tax rate is low and money is abundant you can always simplify the whole procedure and just buy cheap units in Europe and make them dragoons before transporting them to your west coast city.

    In the 30 or so times I have employed this concept I cannot recall a time I gave up (lost) and I only recall one time where I had to abandon my east coast city. When I abandoned it I left only 1 fisherman in it and withdrew down the road a safe distance until my dragoons were fully healthy whereupon I started my counter attack.

    If you try this let me know what you think.

    Blind Side
  2. shl7070

    shl7070 Warlord

    Apr 28, 2010
    How is this strategy different from the usual counterattack strategy? I had played only 2 games by now on pioneer and explorer levels. In both of them I had more dragoons and cannons then the REF so I counterattacked immediately with my dragoons after they landed (The sizes of my military was equal to REF but with almost all units being dragoons.
    I did left the closest cities to Europe empty and surrounded everything inside with cannons. In the later waves I garrisoned them with soldiers to prevent amphibious attacks and it usually worked while the other units (outside) were wiped out the same turn.

    Trade on the west coast is a good idea that I also used but it wasn't essential. The moment of DoI I drafted about 20 dragoons and the trade allowed 6 more but I lost only 3 dragoons (had 100% rebel sentiment), unfortunately I also didn't have much to trade as too many citizens remained in the town halls and only the indian converts, farmers and fishermen remained in job.

    btw, in both games I didn't had a single elder statesman.

    I think that the strategy can be improved if the chief coastal colonies are not the closest to Europe, then you can afford to lose them for one turn. The colonies that were attacked were just fishing villages with dock and warehouse without any production. Also in that case the coastal forests can remain intact to ease the way to appropriately promoted units or to certain FFs like in the picture where the worthless city of St. Louis was the target of the REF while the real city of Quebec wasn't bothered. I took some FF to enhance my forest attack and slaughtered anything in the forest there while the hills were used as base to counterattack.
  3. raystuttgart

    raystuttgart Civ4Col Modder

    Jan 24, 2011
    Stuttgart, Germany
    I guess you are playing Vanilla (without mod) ?
  4. Blind Side

    Blind Side Chieftain

    Dec 11, 2011
    and also at the lower levels - almost not having a strategy works
  5. Paul Kersey

    Paul Kersey Chieftain

    May 16, 2010
    I do something similar on marathon (I play on patriot or revolutionary), and I wait until I have 90%+ sentiment. Found your first city on a hill, expand from there. Crank out tons of goods. Build up to 6+ galleons and load them all up before trading with Europe to maximize cash flow and minimize taxation increase per unit of goods traded. Of course some trading will have to be done before the galleon fleet is fully realized but usually I'm trading en masse by the time 20-30% taxes rolls around. I've accumulated 200,000+ gold this way. I buy veteran soldiers, kill off a bunch of natives and other Euros for XP, and garrison my port city(s) with stacks of 30+ dragoons. Also, infantry specialized for the terrain around the city. Almost always I am able to hold the main port city as long as reinforcements keep pouring in from inland. I have a stable or two plus arsenals and ironworks cranking out guns. Pretty resource intensive strategy but I like it.

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