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Tradition's 3 cities(food focused) opening

Discussion in 'Civ5 - Strategy & Tips' started by Tabarnak, Jul 20, 2013.

  1. Magc8Ball

    Magc8Ball Chieftain

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    How would one modify the start to incorporate Sailing if playing an Archipelago map with fish/crabs and/or pearls available? A three city start such as this one would seem to be a great way to get set up in an Archie map (three cities on your home island(s)) before branching out.
     
  2. tommynt

    tommynt Emperor

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    I do think that with the changes in bnw every strategy ignoring Liberty is suboptimal.
    Not 100% sure yet.

    More testing might have to be done but this looks very much like trying to stick like glue to the pretty useful go tradition buy settler thing which was (and maybe is still) effective in G+K.

    And espacially the buy granny thing as 2nd! buy is definatly suboptimal - 650 gold - thats long into the game at this point it should be way better to go for a settler buy and just build the granny in 2 turns.
     
  3. mad-bax

    mad-bax Deity GOTM Staff

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    Hard building the granary before the settlers is a bad idea IMHO. You just have a granary in a stagnant city for 30 turns of settler building. Surely it's better to buy the granary and build the worker between settlers and rush buy the scout when the gold is there. This will save ~12 turns on the first settler (in lieu of granary) and granary will be in play during the worker build.

    I've re-spun a new start. It's turn 29 and I have only met one other civ and I can sell an embassy for 1gpt. That leaves him with 2gpt for buying a lux. No chance of buying a worker and a granary before the first caravan in built. I have just saved the gold for a granary, which I intend to buy. I'll play the turns now and see how I get on.

    So I'm playing your strat with this build/buy order...
    Scout (turn 7)
    Part Worker (turn 10)
    Shrine (turn 20)
    Granary (turn 31) Bought
    Complete worker (turn 32)
    Settler.. haven't played this far yet.
    Worker
    Settler.
    Caravan
    Caravan

    This is not as good as buying worker then granary clearly, since the granary is pointless before the second settler arrives.

    The alternative (I think) is to put all but one turn into a caravan and then switch to building a unit (for instance) whilst you wait for the cash to buy the granary.
    I don't know if this is best, or if there is another way that I haven't thought of.

    BTW, I'm making these comments because I think the basic strat is excellent and I want to try to master it. It's a bit like a standard chess opening - there are a number of variations that you can employ to react to what your opponent does.
     
  4. Tabarnak

    Tabarnak Pô Chi Min

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    Of course it is. You must buy it when you are going for caravans. After the settlers. Your worker bought need to work more luxs/ressources and make sure to stay happy most of the time.
     
  5. Tabarnak

    Tabarnak Pô Chi Min

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    If you prove this then you bet that Firaxis will do something. Keep in mind that Liberty will ALWAYS bet Tradition for the first 70 turns. We are talking about what can make a strat for Tradition competitive for the mid game.

    What do you propose then?

    What if you don't get 500 gold? Granary hard built is ok if you have a strong capital. But if you can save 5-6 turns of build time when rush buying a granary(which can happen often if you manage to DoF a civ around turn 40) + hammers saved for caravans(+ :c5citizen: earlier) i don't know how it can be wrong.
     
  6. tommynt

    tommynt Emperor

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    I just dont think that 650 gold is realistic to get before a DOF and IF u get a DOF u can kinda easily get more gold ...

    lot luck with gold hut pops and other things aside maybe ..
     
  7. mad-bax

    mad-bax Deity GOTM Staff

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    I've just played it following your guide exactly and actually made the gold on turn 54. This was 3 turns before settler 3 was finished. So it works with the right start. Because I had 3 copies of cotton and one of gems I was able to trade out 3 luxes for 17gpt, two embassies for 1gpt each, and Japan bought an embassy for 25g around turn 50.

    I think I can play this start now. As I said I've not been playing long, and what is obvious to you is new to me, and I learn by doing.

    Thanks for posting this strategy. It will certainly help me improve.
     
  8. lymond

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

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    I've tried this a few times on Emperor and I find it to be successful. I've been amazed by my city growth/production and research circa turn 100. I've had no problem buying the worker and granary. Before, I was holding out on trading resources or even bothering with them for only GPT, but now find that the GPT can really add up nicely and quickly even if a resource trade is only for 3 or 4 gpt. Problem is sometimes the AIs just don't have any GPT available, but if you keep checking they usually do.

    And considering that DOF are so hard to come by early. (I wish there was a way to manipulate this more. I've gone whole games with only 1 or 2 AIs every offering it up. That may be by design..don't know)

    So Tabarnak, when do you settle a fourth city? or is the idea to just go to war for more cities? I tried annexing a 4th city recently and did not get the free aqueduct or monument.

    I'm sure this strategy is not so optimal on certain maps, especially if you will be iso/semi-iso for some time, but works well on most standard maps in which a good portion of the AIs are met early on.
     
  9. vale

    vale Mathematician

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    I have a couple of questions.

    First, what determines the yield of an early food trade route? Sometimes it is 3, sometimes 4 (double I think for cargo ship routes).

    Second, if city 2 had the hammers to make a granary before city 3 was up, what do you think of rush buying a caravan in city 2 that will feed the capital rather than the granary in the capital.

    Benefits are the extra 1-2 food early which is an extra hill the capital can work while building and the fact that it is slightly more gold efficient to rush a caravan (or more significantly a cargo ship) than a granary. It also makes building the National College significantly faster and synergises sort of nicely with monarchy.

    Drawbacks are that city 2 or 3 doesn't get a big boost until the first trade route is done and the caravan can be moved. Also this would require having 50 more gold at the point that you are ready to rush buy (although if you were only a few turns off, the extra food yield after rushing would more than make up for the lower food yield before).
     
  10. vale

    vale Mathematician

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    If you actually get a cargo ship going to your capital quickly you could even realistically make a run at an early wonder with reasonable expectation of getting it.
     
  11. lexusfox

    lexusfox Chieftain

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    Thank you Tabarnak, this strategy has worked wonders for me (no pun intended). :)
     
  12. Tabarnak

    Tabarnak Pô Chi Min

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    Thanks for your insights :)

    Both work. You stay with 3 and build up army or build a 4th city after the NC. Get engineering and send a 3rd caravan.

    Completely agree, like in GnK you need traders to make it work...or cs bullying at mid-low level in rare occasions(Shoshone, early spearman, etc).

    Food is clculated in relation of your era and those from the AI. For example, when you enter the classical era but one of the AI is still in the ancient era you get 3.5 :c5food:. If everyone is in it's 4 :c5food:. Medieval can be 4.5 or 5 :c5food:. And so on. This explain a bit why i suggest to get Philo before Archery.

    About your suggestion :

    Not a bad idea, i can see a 2nd city with some wheat or deer tiles doing this way. Rush buy granary in 2nd city and hard build a caravan. 390 gold is huge for a caravan, the granary cost less and you gain :c5citizen: earlier to build the caravan faster. So you can still have 3 nice cities. Problem is that you need to be really fast and need to get the gold for this. 2 back to back caravans in 2nd city can slow down your libraries too much too...unless you get a ton of gold or insane production.

    I still think that you need more ressources to make it work. Your satellite cities aren't going to be much productive until 3 :c5citizen:
     
  13. Tabarnak

    Tabarnak Pô Chi Min

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    I added this minor add in the OP :

     
  14. Martin Alvito

    Martin Alvito Real men play SMAC

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    I seriously doubt it. If you're not Poland, mixing Liberty and Tradition requires delaying Aqueducts by quite some time. I suspect you're going to find that hurts worse than passing on an early Worker or Settler in the vast majority of cases. The :c5happy: constraint binds more strongly on empire size than the :c5food: constraint, and that problem is best managed through vertical growth (Monarchy, per-city unhappy penalty) rather than horizontal.

    If there were a good reason to go into the bottom of the tree pre-Education for Engineering, things might be different. As it stands, you pass up too much growth waiting for the technology to hard build the Aqueducts where you need them.
     
  15. Justice1337

    Justice1337 Sofa King

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    I've tried this start 4 times on 4 different maps now, and I'm unable to get significantly better results over what I was doing before. Not that it's bad, of course. Trading aggressively and making sensible purchases is good overall rule. But I just haven't seen measurable improvement over alternatives. That seems to be the problem in G&K. One thing works, but so does another thing. You can build your capital tall, or get cities faster. You can expand right away, or delay. You can go Writing first, or not.

    First, I'm not entirely convinced that Food Caravans are worth it at all until at least the second wave. You not only have difficulty making Happiness, but also workable tiles and Worker improvements. Basically if you halt your growth at all due to Unhappiness before T100, your Food Caravan was wasted. And there is absolutely no point to working naked 2f and 3f tiles when your caravan could've gotten you 3-4 Beakers per turn when sent to another Civ. So a lot of the time, I would rather put down a city at 1 pop, grab the luxury to offset unhappiness, and then just let the culture accumulate for more tiles as I work a mined hill for the early buildings. Other times, I'd prefer to keep to the capital city, send a Beaker Caravan, build a Library, and research the additional trade route techs without the 5% per city offset. Certain paths are better for some things and worse for others, but underlying it is the concept that no one thing can be parlayed across your entire empire to get everything you were missing. If you miss out on expansion and growth, the alternatives are now actually quite serviceable.

    But definitely, Settler before Granary is the way to go when you do want to expand. No matter how I slice it, I can't get many more than 4 worthwhile tiles in my Capital at this point in the game, and when you're growing into bare 2f and 2h tiles, you know that's time to build your Settler. I'm not sure that buying Granary is correct after that point though, because again, I'm not convinced that Food Caravans are correct.

    Another thing, the Worker doesn't command nearly as much importance as it used to. I'm thinking particularly with starts that have resources like Deer, Banana, Oasis, Citrus, Ivory, or any of the 1g Plantation luxuries. If an improvement does not get me 1f or 1h, I feel safe putting it off. One particular desert start put me with 4 Citrus, 1 Marble, 1 Oasis, 2 Sheep and 1 Horses. The first tile I felt like improving was the Horses, since neighbors didn't even have enough GPT to trade me for my Citrus. So I had no problem building Caravan before Worker there and sending it to the adjacent civ for Beakers and Gold. I am thinking that BNW threw a lot of conditionality to the start, and so an all-out guide might not be workable at all anymore.

    One last thing, early military is now very good and even necessary now. Those barbarian camp quests for Maritimes, Mercantiles and Culturals really make a difference. Given that Happiness is a hard constraint on Growth, capturing a barb camp for a Mercantile along with liberating its Worker is more worthwhile than a lot of the other things you could be doing, not to mention using your military to deter war and defend.
     
  16. Tabarnak

    Tabarnak Pô Chi Min

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    I understand your thoughts. Care to share these starts? :)

    No guide are perfect. It's situationnal and i'm not playing like any of you and vice versa. Results may vary. I'm a big fan of huge and early cities :D

    It's primordial to stay happy most of the time when food caravans are feeding cities. If you fail at this then this guide is useless for this map and knowledge.
     
  17. Tre

    Tre Chieftain

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    I play with this strategy on prince and the barbs always murder me. I spend T50 to T80 doing a tile repair battle and firing at barbs :( I'm a nooooob
     
  18. Autokrator48

    Autokrator48 Chieftain

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    Just keep your Warrior/Scout near your city by that time to protect your worker/tiles.
     
  19. tommynt

    tommynt Emperor

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    This was the case in G+K - BNW speeds sp aquisition a bit so doing both trees might be a bit more doable. - but as said bit testing have to be done.

    Not having to hardbuild unboosted settlers just opens the buildorder for many other things like units which cant hurt .. At least its more failprove ..
     
  20. Martin Alvito

    Martin Alvito Real men play SMAC

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    You ninja-ed me as I cut-and-paste my comment into your thread. Too funny.

    At best I'll concede that you're probably going to open the first seventy turns more reliably and consistently. I still think that Tabarnak is right in the limit regarding Tradition in a non-Poland case.

    But I also agree that you're correct to assert that this is an empirical problem.
     

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