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To Settle or to Bulb?

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Strategy & Tips' started by jarhead_leif, Dec 13, 2012.

  1. rfcfanatic

    rfcfanatic Mercantilist

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    Ah, when these super medics, flankers and so on get killed, they will be gone forever...

    But a settled GG will stay in the city as long as the game lasts (unless the city gets razed) and several of them settled in the city will be training super soldiers eventually :)
     
  2. lymond

    lymond Rise Up! (Phoenix Style!) Hall of Fame Staff

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    You don't get your super-medic killed. That is one use of a GG I never go without. Always the first one unless playing Boudica and GW rushing.

    I agree that settled GGs are a good thing, but that super-medic is super valuable.
     
  3. ben-jammin

    ben-jammin Emperor

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    I can't remember the last time I lost a super medic, but im pretty sure it wa sbecause of a mis-click or just sheer negligence.
     
  4. jarhead_leif

    jarhead_leif Civ2ToT Modder

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    Uhm, do you settle GEs, rush build wonders, or bulb? :think:
    I usually go for rushing whatever is the nearest available wonder (except chicken pizza, ofc).
     
  5. noto2

    noto2 Emperor

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    don't listen to people who say "never settle". Although I will say this - bulbing is always useful, in any game, but settling is something that should be done only in specific circumstances. Either you're planning on running a SSE and REP, or other circumstances, like settling an early GA when planning on a cultural victory, or you got a great prophet early in the game and don't want any of the religious techs...things like that. Also game timing is important too. Did you rush to writing and immediately hire scientists? Did you pop a GS at a point in the game where your bpt are only 28? Well then settling him to boost your research rate by 23% is fine, and you get the hammer as well.
     
  6. WelshGandalf

    WelshGandalf King

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    Did someone say "What does a city with lots of settled great people look like?"

    No?

    Ah well, I'm going to post it anyway. :p Settling (almost) all your great people is a valid strategy in some circumstances. It helps if you have a leader that will help with that, eg Industrial or Philosophical. In this example, I was an industrial leader and build tons of world wonders in my capital, along with national epic (for more GPP), running representation (the extra beakers are essential to this kind of strategy) and Oxford Uni, as there are so many beakers being produced.

    Spoiler :

    Check out my 499 beakers a turn with the slider at zero! :D

    That's 14 settled great people, plus 2 scientists from the great library and 2 more from events (yeah I like to play with events on sometimes), as well as the scientists that I'm currently running from all my food.
     
  7. Kadazzle

    Kadazzle Emperor

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    The OP is specifically talking about Great Scientists (GS). In strategies that don't involve settling most or all of your GP, I hold that settling a GS is not very optimal, unless done very early in the game, and in certain situations (where it would produce more BPT than an Academy would). Academies and Bulbing are better, but not "4178712893y2896y32781 times stronger".
     
  8. Zx Zero Zx

    Zx Zero Zx Deity

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    Leveraging a bulb will almost always make it 4178712893y2896y32781 times stronger than settling. But if you don't they are about equal in the long term.
     
  9. noto2

    noto2 Emperor

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    oh, we're specifically talking about great scientists? Specifically in games where we are definitely NOT going for a SSE? Okay well in that case it depends how early they come. If you get your first one SUPER early then I would settle the first, academy the second, and then start bulbing. A lot of the time, however, settling isn't worth it because you don't get the first one early enough, in that case I would use almost all of them for bulbs, the exception being the academy. You should always have at least one academy. Should you build more? Sure, if you have a city that is producing a lot of commerce and beakers, has long term potential, you can put an academy there.
     
  10. ohjames

    ohjames Warlord

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    It my opinion it makes no sense to settle the initial Great Scientist - presumably you'd be dropping him in your capital, and an Academy offers more or less the same immediate returns (as your Palace generates quite a bit of commerce).

    The only scenario in which I might settle the second Great Scientist is if I was beelining a technology that wasn't on the Great Scientist bulb path. I'm not sure exactly what I'd be going for in such a situation - maybe an unusual prereq for a unique unit or unique building? It couldn't be an HA rush as there's no way I'd have two Great Scientists in that space of time. Maybe if I'm running up the culture tree for a cultural victory and I don't have Caste for Artists yet. Probably not if I'm running up the guilds tree, since I could bulb Machinery to save a lot of time down there.

    The two hot Great Scientist bulb paths - Philosophy->Education->Liberalism (while avoiding Fishing and Machinery) and Machinery->Engineering(->Printing Press) (while avoiding Fishing and Meditation) are just so good that I always want to take one or the other, because they offer more or less the two best attack windows in the game. Add that to the bit where Great Scientists bulb for 50% more than other Great Persons and settling is rarely the right idea. Fishing leaders can still bulb Education and then self-tech Liberalism, and bulbing Astronomy is an excellent move in the mid-game, albeit not as hugely powerful as jumping to early Engineering or to early Military Tradition or Steel (through Liberalism).

    Great Engineers offer a production bonus when settled which can be okay if you put them in the Heroic Epic city... but I'd almost always rather rush a wonder with one. They have (in my opinion) the second-best bulb path, too, although they don't get the 50% bonus that scientists do. Still, their bulbs are so good and wonder-rushing is so good that I don't ever want to settle a GE. Plus GEs tend to be a rarity, so I never want to waste one!

    I wouldn't often settle a Great Merchant. Doing a trade mission and using it to upgrade a bunch of troops to gain a temporary military advantage is a very strong play. Their bulb path has some gems in it (Currency, CoL, Guilds, Banking, Economics, etc.) There might be fringe situations where I have a city out by triple gold with low food that needs the +1 food bonus; otherwise I'd never settle.

    I would never settle a Great Artist. If I need culture in one specific city I will need it fast, so I use the Great Work ability instead. If I'm going for a cultural victory and it's in the early game, I might prefer to bulb an artistic tech instead. Otherwise I save these for Golden Ages or for dropping culture bombs to flip vulnerable cities. I try to avoid generating Great Artists if I'm not going for a cultural victory, anyway.

    There are two Great Persons I would consider settling, though: Great Spies and Great Priests.

    If I generate an early Great Spy from the Great Wall I will often settle it in my capital and try to generate a second one to build Scotland Yard there. This generates enough espionage points that you can overwhelm a techy neighbour and start thieving. Some maps favor this - you have a wilderness on one side generating a lot of barbs, but a neighbour in spy-reachable range that you can start sponging off of. I would farm the rest of my Great People somewhere else, though, and not generate more Spies if I could help it; I am not a big fan of Great Spies outside of the very early game. This is all kind of moot though since you can't bulb with Spies anyway.

    In the very last case - Great Priests - okay, I settle these guys sometimes. +hammers/+gold is fair in a capital with Bearaucracy. It's possible that I may have generated a Great Priest off of a temple or the Oracle fairly early in order to build a shrine if I've got an early religion (usually Confucianism or Hinduism, but occasionally Christianity... yeah, I'm bad enough at the game that I still found Christianity sometimes.) In that case I may end up with a couple of surplus Great Priests from the shrine before I can get my Great Person farm up and running somewhere else to generate scientists. Great Priests bulb for pretty unexciting techs so I'm okay with dumping them in the capital - although one will most likely get burned for a Golden Age to pump out Great Scientists once the GP farm is up. If you have a good production capital you can snowball the bonus production from the settled Great Priests into producing more Great-Person-producing wonders (hopefully non-Priest ones!) in your capital and you do get some compounding benefit there. I think this is a pretty map-specific strategy and a fringe case though.

    So to sum up: never settle Great Scientists, never settle Great Engineers, settle Great Merchants only in the very rare case of food-low gold mine cities, settle Great Artists only at the very beginning of a cultural victory game, and settle Great Priests or Great Spies in the capital if you want to and if a Golden Age isn't a strong move.

    Strategy tips from a guy who's still struggling with Immortal! Enjoy!
     
  11. Kadazzle

    Kadazzle Emperor

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    ^ People don't like settling GE because they like to rush-build things, but settled GEs provide the most value in comparison to the other GP.

    Not all cases should you Academy over settling. Yes, the palace does provide commerce, but sometimes times the +50% bonus won't give the same amount of BPT in comparison to settling the GP. Each game is different, so do the math (BP, time until next GS) if you want to be really efficient. Otherwise, it's much easier just sticking to Academies/Bulbing, especially on lower levels.
     
  12. noto2

    noto2 Emperor

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    It really depends on the game, leader, and map. Many times in the early game I am conducting a super early war (chariot rush, sword rush, choking) or I'm conducting a REX and my slider is low, in that case settling the first GS is better than an academy first. The nice thing about specialists is that they are independent of the slider.
    As for the great artist, if it's early game, I think settling is a much stronger play than the "great work" of art. The great work almost never flips a city and the settled artist provides a LOT of culture, what is it, 12? As well as some gold. Culture is the easiest output to enhance as well, with cathedrals and whatnot, that artist can be generating 30-60 culture per turn quite easily, and overwhelm the neighbouring city.
    It also depends on your empire and game strategy. A lot of people are talking about bulbing to get a military tech advantage. Yes. If you are planning on conducting war in the middle ages or renaissance, then yes bulbing is probably what you should be doing. But what if you have very good land, are playing a IND or PHI leader, and have made 1 or more neighbour an ally? In other words, what if you are planniing on a more peaceful game and are cottaging up your capital to be a super science city? Don't underestimate the power of settling some GP in that super science capital and running REP later on in the game. US/FS doesn't make much sense if most of your cottages are in the capital - in that case it's smarter to run BUR, and in that case you don't need US as much. REP can be a powerful alternative.
     
  13. cseanny

    cseanny Emperor

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    For me and my playstyle an early GS will always be an Academy because with just a little effort, not even a lot, you can rapidly expand or conquer cities, accumulate gold and run deficit research for quite some time which will be a lot stronger than settling.

    The rest will be used to bulb towards Lib...... a nice war tech like Cuirs > Cannon > or Rifles many hundreds of years earlier which is good! Seriously, would you rather own an early 20+ cities or have less than half the cities with a super science city?
     
  14. rfcfanatic

    rfcfanatic Mercantilist

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    By the way, does it ever make sense to bulb industrial, modern and future era techs? In my opinion, bulbing adds so little beakers compared to tech cost in late game.
     
  15. Strickl3r

    Strickl3r Prince

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    No it doesn't. Golden Ages are the best thing to do in that Era.
     
  16. rfcfanatic

    rfcfanatic Mercantilist

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    ...or founding corps.
     
  17. noto2

    noto2 Emperor

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    Have you ever even tried that? Iv'e seen games where a super science city hits industrialism like 12 techs before the other civs, not much bulbing involved. Look up obsolete's games
     
  18. cseanny

    cseanny Emperor

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    @ Noto2

    Yes and Yes. But the Industrial age??! The vast majority of my Deity games are won (not a winning position but the game is over) in the 1270-1400 AD range, before the Industrial Age. Now I do opt for a weird early Oxford strategy (200-300 AD) on some maps but I still bulb and use the early research to reach key war techs quick too, thus ending the game early. The only time I'd opt for settling is with the Mids and semi-or completely isolated. Other than that your handicapping yourself. But to be perfectly honest with you, We simply have very different play styles. This is gonna sound slightly rude but it's not meant to be.

    Whenever I read your post I usually find myself scratching my head and wondering what game you are playing. Honestly, I disagree with about 80%+ of everything you've ever posted. But having said that, there are quite a few different ways to play the game and be successful, hence, the joy in it :).
     
  19. noto2

    noto2 Emperor

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    I guess so. I don't see all of my games ending with the cannon. It's true that the cannon age is a common age for game-deciding wars, but I play with as many random settings as possible - random maps, random leaders, even random personalities.
    Also, I don't think my playstyle is all that radically different from yours. All we've really debated here is whether or not to settle one great scientist - the first/second one. It's not like I'm always settling my GP. No, in fact with scientists I almost always bulb them, the exceptions are when I'm running a SSE, which is a rarity, or in the extreme early or extreme late game.
     
  20. jarhead_leif

    jarhead_leif Civ2ToT Modder

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    You're great!! Can't believe I improved alot with just a simple strategy. Well, I am only playing on monarch, but quite amazed still. ^^"
     

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