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Tips for extreme beginners

Discussion in 'Civ4 Strategy Articles' started by dpsizzle, Jul 10, 2006.

  1. dpsizzle

    dpsizzle Chieftain

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2006
    Messages:
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    Here is a short list of tips that beginners might want to know as they learn to play Civ 4. This list may seem obvious to experienced players, but as a beginner myself I have found these tips to be important things to think about while building your empire.

    Please feel free to reply and add your own tips:)

    Civ 4 Lessons learned:

    Take control of the sea
    Make sure you keep track of and can over power enemy ships
    By moving forces around by ship you can attack the enemy from a multitude of locations

    Watch your back side

    Don’t commit all your forces to one enemy or one side of your territory
    Keep an eye on enemies attacking from the rear

    Invade with two or more siege divisions
    Fight for one area (city) while breaking down the defenses of another

    Use border cities for military production
    Don’t produce military units deep in your territory where it will take them ten turns to get to the front lines

    Only keep cities that are valuable to you
    Small cities in non-useful places are worthless to you and will hurt your empire in the long run

    Don’t build units you won’t use

    Don’t produce low-tech units unless you’re going to war soon
    Out of date units will hardly be used if newer units are available

    Limit the number of workers you create
    Excess workers crowd your turns
    Too many workers ten to make you build too much

    Take the time to decide what your city needs when building
    Don’t build a farm or factory before looking at what your city needs

    Spread to islands

    Islands are first come, first serve since you can usually take over the entire island and keep other countries from building nearby
    Also they are good defensive positions

    Try to always fortify a military unit in each city
    If you don’t its easy for the enemy to get behind you and take your city without a fight

    Try to always fortify a military unit in each city
    If you don’t its easy for the enemy to get behind you and take your city without a fight

    That's it! Please add your tips below or let me know what you think of mine:cool:

    dpsizzle
     
  2. socralynnek

    socralynnek Civ & Hattrick addict

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    Have to disagree with those two, otherwise good tips!

    Older units can be upgraded and I always find it nice to have backup units I can upgrade when I get attacked. Building new unitts when I get attacked and need defense costs a few turns, if you have some older ones around you can upgrade, then it takes you 1 turn.

    And the second one: why limit the number of workers?
    Because you are too lazy to move them all?
    Best is the rule: Never let a city work an unimproved tile, you should have as many workers as you need to develop the tiles as fast as the city grows. And e.g. the faster you have your cottages, the earlier it is developed.
     
  3. dpsizzle

    dpsizzle Chieftain

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    To each their own. Thanks for the input.
     
  4. Sisiutil

    Sisiutil All Leader Challenger

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    I like this one quite a bit. It makes sense. Your core cities may be able to produce units faster, but that can be offset by the distance they have to travel.

    If I do need cities far from the front to produce units, I try to have them produce those with extra movement points (mounted, for example). Those units are usually more expensive anyway.
     
  5. GenocideBringer

    GenocideBringer Chieftain

    Joined:
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    If you have a good road network, the distance is usually not a problem unless you have a large empire.

    What I do is build my faster units in back, and slower units in front.
     
  6. Eef

    Eef Chieftain

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    Netherlands
    :goodjob: Thanks for the thread! :goodjob:

    I'm totally new to CIV, and it's hard!
    Even if you play the tutorial and try a few games.... often it's just clicking on the "advised" actions in stead of make your own decisions. Often I don't know what I'm doing it for.

    Suggestions on (links to) 'how to become a better CIV'er' are welcome!
     
  7. Moonsinger

    Moonsinger Settler Retired Moderator

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Iowa
    Although Civ or any computer application come naturally to me and I usually don't read the manual to operate the computer, I recently realize how difficult it is to teach my father to play Civ. Since he has been playing the old DOS game "Empire" forever, I thought he would like Civ4. Big mistake! After spending more than 4 hours with him on how to play the tutorial over and over again, he still doesn't know what to do with the worker or settler. Therefore, this is my advice:

    When you are not sure what to do with your unit, select it and see what option you can do with it. When you are not sure what to build, point the mouse on it and right click to access its help menu. First, learn how to operate the computer and the application/game that run on top of the computer. Learn how to operate the mouse and keyboard. For example, what the Page Up, Page Down, and arrow keys would normally do? What would the right mouse click does in most Window application/games? How to point and drag item on the screen. How to hover the mouse to see if there is any popup help. Once you figure all that out, the game may come naturally to you.
     
  8. Sisiutil

    Sisiutil All Leader Challenger

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    Civ is a challenging game; its complexity is a big part of its appeal, but it definitely means there are hurdles to overcome when you're new. As Moonsinger pointed out, one of the first things is to become familiar with the interface. Once you're comfortable with that, you can then focus on the game itself.

    I can't emphasize enough how important it is to read through the manual. No, it doesn't tell you everything, but you need that basic foundation on which you can build.

    I've written a strategy guide for beginners that may be helpful once you have that foundation. Link is in my sig, below.
     
  9. Eef

    Eef Chieftain

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    Wow Sisiutil, that is Service with a captial S.
    I'm sure I will be busy for a while with your guide. It's looking very good!

    Thanks a lot! Really great!
     
  10. savethemooses

    savethemooses Chieftain

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    So should I build farms, cottages, and other improvements on every tile? And how do I know what improvement is best for which tile?
     
  11. FuRRie

    FuRRie Chieftain

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    You shouldn't Improve Every tile.
    After a culture expands the first time it makes a "fat cross", this is the area where a city can work tiles in. Those are the squares you must improve.
    The most important things in early game is Food and Coin. Get a good growing city with a nice income.
    After the most important improvements you can start connecting Luxuries and start specializing your cities.
     
  12. Malganis

    Malganis Chieftain

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    To answer the above question, it depends. What should it depend on? Two words which will make you a much better player: City Specialization.

    City specialization is deciding what to focus a city on based on its location and available resources. I'm not an expert on this, but I'll try to give you a quick run down.

    Before I start, allow me to disclaim that you should *always* build the resource-appropriate improvement for any resources you have access to. Regardless of the type of city, spreading the resource throughout your civilization helps all of them become healthier and happier. If you can get multiple strategic resources (iron, horses, marble, etc.), you can trade the extras to the AI for their extra resources you may not have in your borders.

    Commerce: The best place for a commerce-specialized city is in an area with a lot of Grasslands/River. Grasslands, with no improvements, produces two food, enough to support a citizen working it. Any tile next to a river also adds one commerce. Add a cottage to that, and you're up to two food and two commerce (which bumps up to three if you have the financial trait). Whether you use a Commerce city for science, culture, or wealth, is up to you, but balance your civilizations' needs. You'll generally want at least two Science-city-powerhouses (200+ beakers) to keep up with the AI on Noble or higher.

    Cottages are the improvement of choice in a commerce city. Plains are also good choices for cottages, but you'll have to make up for the lost food somewhere. A Plains tile, unimproved, is 1 Food & 1 Hammer, so the citizen working that tile is "leeching" 1 Food (2 consumed - 1 produced)

    Production: Production cities are great for pumping out military units or wonders, and are best placed near a hilly area with a food resource. A plains hill produces 2 Hammers, a grasslands hill produces 1 Food & 1 Hammer. Either way, the citizen working that tile is going to be leeching food, so a nearby food resource helps make up for this drain.

    The improvements of choice for production cities are mines and farms. If you can place a farm somewhere, do it. Otherwise, put a mine on it. If you can balance food produced with food consumed in these cities, you can easily get up to 30-50 Hammers, which makes it very easy to pump out military units every turn or two.

    Great People farms A good place for these cities is a location with a food resource or two in flatter areas, preferably with a lot of grasslands. The objective of these cities is similar to production cities, in that you want a lot of extra food. But, instead of supporting miners, you're supporting specialists.

    Farms, farms, and more farms for these cities.


    That pretty much covers the main city types. Some uber pros / experts might have more, but that's the basics. How many of each type you have will depend heavily on your surrounding map and the type of victory you're after. A space racer should have a lot more commerce than a conquestor who'd be after more production. In general though, commerce is a good nominee to be your most common city type.

    To conclude, my final words of advice would be these: If you're ever unsure what kind of improvement to put down, make a cottage. It'll payoff in the end. (No pun intended :p)
     
  13. pygbe

    pygbe Chieftain

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    No, because you have to pay maintenance for them, as for every other unit.
    -5 gold per turn for those 5 idle workers can harm. But I must admit that I rarely have idle workers in my games.
     
  14. The Lardossen

    The Lardossen Chieftain

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    - Go for Bronze Working, and chop and whip.
    - Always try to get Copper if it's possible and (half) wipe out a neighbour.
     
  15. tyroneb97

    tyroneb97 Chieftain

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    City specialization, City specialization, City specialization.
    That was the biggest adjustment for me in going from lower to higher levels of difficulty.
     
  16. Irrelevant77

    Irrelevant77 Chieftain

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    how do you specialise a city ? thanks in advance
     
  17. Sisiutil

    Sisiutil All Leader Challenger

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  18. The Wimp

    The Wimp Chieftain

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    make archipelago your map, building your civ in isolation gives you lots of time experiment
     
  19. The Wimp

    The Wimp Chieftain

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    this cannot be stressed enough. make a military city, always, evry time, no matter what. i learned this the hard way
     
  20. mtr12

    mtr12 Chieftain

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    My tips:

    -The Native Americans can actually leverage their PRO trait somewhat effectively! Build a Totem Pole in your HE City and pump out super-promoted Crossbowmen for a medieval war. A Vassalage/Pacifism civic combo can also help here. Or you can build Longbows and use a Great Merchant Mission (PHIL helps here :)) to upgrade them to Riflemen for a Rifle/Cannon war instead.
     

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