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[BTS] Trying to get good at this game but I keep failing...what do I do?


Jun 3, 2024
Hi I'm new to this game. I heard it's very challenging and I found these forums and hopefully ya'll can help me be betteršŸ˜­

I decided to play this game because I'm usually very good at strategy sim-type games. I thought this game would be cake-walk but instead it's kicking my butt lol.

Spoiler My last game :

Maybe ya'll can critique my gameplay and see if there's anything I'm doing wrong:crazyeye:
So I played on Deity because I wanted to challenge myself a bit. I picked William the Dutch guy because he's financial and creative two traits I have in real life. I also downloaded the bug mod since I heard it's a good mod for newbies

I moved my warrior and settler around a bit to scout the area for better lands and found gold!! This game is already going great!!

Since I found some nice gold I decided to circle my settler back around to where I started and settle down. Now I get corn and gold!!

Since it's a high difficulty I know I'm gonna need a strong army so I decided to go for archery. First I need to get hunting. With hunting I can also build scouts to explore faster! In the meantime I'm going to build a warrior then settle more cities before I settle down and start farming my food!

I wanted to fight the lions here but the odds are like 25% so I decided not to risk it.

The tiki hut gave me 40 gold! I also got hunting so once I have archers I can go to town. Now that I have a warrior guarding my city I started a worker. I hate how it stops the city from growing though :(

I marched my warrior into the jungle and got killed by a panther :(

I had to stop building the worker and build another warrior to replace my dead one

I got archery!! Might as well finish the warrior. I need a worker so I can build stuff after. I'm gonna go for iron working for swordsman and I can kill the other empires with them once I get it:

So my new warrior is going to find those panthers and avenge me!


More gold from villagers! They look like little Minecraft villages hehe

I found clams!! Best part is I already start with fishing so I can settle this spot and make more food! Also damn 17 turns for bronze working...I know the gold circle things speed up research but I can't slow growth down in my city :(

My worker is in!! While my warrior finds more villages in the north I used my worker to explore more and see if I can find more cool things in the map. Sometimes the villages give you free tech so maybe I can get bronze working and save 10+ turns!

I met my neighbor Sitting Bull!

I was going to get the 3rd village but sadly Sitting Bull took it with his archer. I'll get him with my swordsman soon though! Maybe I'll even have copper so I can make axe-men in the meantime

Our worker found more food! We even have fish! The game gives you 6 food if you build a workboat and since food grows cities faster I definitely want to settle there!

My city is finally growing and I moved my worker to start the first farm! The game says corn gives the most food so I decided to farm it first.

I realized if I have my population on the 3 gold chips I get bronze working in 5 turns instead of 7 even though it slows the growth down. It won't matter once that corn is improved. Maybe I can farm the dye to make it 3 food :)

Damn he already has 4 cities?? I know they get an advantage in Deity but good god. I figure I can capture them with my swordsmen later :D

I can only put 20 pics per post so I'll post part 2 in a bit.
I've been watching YouTube videos to learn the game but I'm still a bit confused here.
Spoiler Part 2 :

Oh I forgot to mention I'm in a Pangaea map with a tropical climate and low sea level. More land = more cities!
We're back at turn 42 and so far...we met two more neighbors: The Aztecs and Japan! Problem is, we got a barbarian warrior trying to enter our borders. Lucky for us our archer is nearly finished! I'm even working three more golden coin things or whatever they're called lol

Uh oh...our archer won't be finished on time unless I work more hammer tiles. We're fine for now..

Met another person!

Little jerk went on top of my food and I couldn't work it anymore...so I killed it with my new archer! That was my first kill in the game so far.

Another barbarian? Oh it's on now! My worker will build mines to increase hammers and get more archers out sooner!

Oh and the Portuguese are the most powerful...I'm on the bottom. Yikes. I think I need more archers.

Okay so those warriors are protecting that village. There must be something good there? Maybe a free tech?

Ugh...it was worth a shot. No worries I got more archers on the way. I think it's time to build a new settler and colonize more land!

I feel so dumb...I should've done the gold one first. It gave me so much gold that it shaved two turns off iron working!

I also learned that I can chop forests down. I'll leave two forest tiles by the capital since they look nice and give more health to the city

I can get 4 food for the capital if I farm flood plains! Sweet! This is actually my best game so far. Normally I get wiped out much sooner :(

HELL YES! We got iron! We gonna build so many swordsmen and take out all the neighbors! I might actually win this right? Now I'm researching Masonry so I can build walls to protect my cities.

Turn 64 my new settler is done! I also got Masonry so I'm going to research the wheel to make roads. First I'm going to build barracks to train units for the upcoming invasion, then walls to protect my capital (plus they look nice!), then...we conquer the world!

I just realized my capital doesn't reach down there...do I need more culture to be able to select more than two tiles away?

I'm going to build more farms so my capital can get nice and big. We're already at level 5!

I'm gonna settle the clams from earlier before someone else beats me to it!

The state of our capital:

Founded my 2nd city! I'm also almost done with the early techs in the tree!

I saw a Tik Tok video of someone playing this game and learned how to open borders. I saw it come up on my screen so I opened borders with Sitting Bull. I also realized I couldn't build swordsmen without iron mines so I decided to build those instead:

3080 BC and we have officially met all the other civilizations!

Spoiler Part 3 :

Damn these guys are good...didn't even get halfway to finishing the great wall before Sitting Bull finished it. I got some gold for it though but it's not the same. I'll just have to settle for regular walls then lol

Everyone is opening borders with me! Cool! I got stuck on here for a bit since I couldn't figure out how to give the iron to the capital, then I finally did it. I just needed to drag the arrow to the capital!

This is another issue I have with this game, I clicked on my city and it says "too crowded." How do I make my cities less crowded?

My worker found a barbarian city! I'm going to make swordsmen to take it out!

Walls are done! City looks nice and cozy now! They're still unhappy though. I thought building a wall would make them happy but they're still mad. Idk what to do about that.

I'm still new to trading here so idk how it works. I tried giving my iron and gold to him for alphabet but the option goes away when I select it. When I ask them what they want for this they said it's not possible :(

Meanwhile our second city is building a lighthouse for extra food. I also realized I need to build a road to deliver iron from the capital too so I used the click-drag road trick to connect them. I also saw that I have horses!! Omg I can build horse archers too!

I'm building more swordsmen and already have like 2 done. We're making some good progress so far:

3 swordsmen should be enough! I also sent my two archers to assist them. We're taking our first city. This is the best game I've played so far!

I used my two archers to soften them up then my swordsmen for the kill! It took a few turns to take the city since they had to heal but it worked. I gave them the 20% city attack promotion which helped too!

Uh oh...

Four swordsmen?! This game is tough lol

Got them! Now I got 3 cities! On that note, how TF does Persia have 11 already?!

I quickly send my soldiers back to my capital to defend it! My worker finally finished the road so I can build double the swordsmen!

I'm getting math next so I can build forts to aid in my attacks. Meanwhile the 4 swordsmen are about to attack. My superior swordsmen and axe-men hide behind the walls of my capital and prepare!

My army is only getting bigger!



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Spoiler Part 4 :

This chick came to me with an offer so I took it!

I think I'm ready to invade my opponent! I also converted to Buddhism and it seems everyone is getting war declared on each other! I'm also building another worker to speed things up!

I declare war on Sitting Bull and already ambushed his little worker! Hahahaha!

This is where things started to go downhill....
I tried taking the city but his archers killed nearly all my swordsmen! Wtf...only one left.

I tried to get my workers out of harms way but I was surrounded. He killed my last swordsman too. I should've built more units I guess..

He got my capital :(

My soldiers take way too long to build! I can only build so many things and I didn't mine the hills enough to make more hammers :(

And...second city down. I can't stop him either since he refuses to talk :(

I lost my capital, my workers and all my soldiers...but I'm not giving up. This is our last resistance!

And...game over.

Clearly I must be doing something wrong here...this is the furthest I ever made it in this game on deity but as soon as I want to conquer I get slaughtered. I should've been more peaceful but instead I got greedy. I was doing so well before this game went badly wrong :(

Any advice would be appreciated here.



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Welcome to the forums! :pat:
Welcome! Here you will find a good community of highly-skilled players willing to help. You came to the right place. ^_^

My advice to you, if you are starting new.... don't touch Deity until you really know the mechanics well. It really is NOT beginner friendly. If you really really want to challenge yourself from the get go and start at a high level, try Immortal instead.

Also, it helps a LOT if you upload your initial 4000 BC Auto Save, as well as your most current save so that people can actually deep dive into your game.

Finally, go download either BUG mod or BUFFY mod. It really helps.
Here are my quick observations, judging from screen shots and explanations from just Part 1. I am sure others will chime in.

1. You do not want to waste too many turns moving your initial settler for the 1st city. You would always first move your initial warrior/scout (depending on whether your chosen leader starts with Hunting or not) to reveal as many fogged tiles as possible to see if it is even worth moving your settler from the initial tile it starts with. You move your settler with the updated knowledge of the vicinity revealed by your warrior/scout and nothing more usually. You don't want to take chances with your settler to do the actual scouting/fog busting. I am not sure where your initial starting settler position was, but I reckon you wasted TWO needless turns by using your settler as a scout.

2. You always want to pay attention to your starting techs and what resources are around you before making your choice on your 1st tech. Willem starts with Fishing and Agriculture. So your worker can improve the corn by farming it, which is good. But you don't need Hunting right away. You have no resources that will take advantage of it. You said you wanted Archery, and that is not a bad route to defend yourself from barbarians, but that can wait until a little later. Archers are strictly for defense by the way. Also, scouts are never ever useful and a big waste of hammers. It will get itself killed so easily. When you get the hang of the game a bit more, you might build a scout to use it as a super-medic unit led by a Great General, but other than that, never ever waste your hammers building these guys.

3. You always want to prioritize growth at the start. Judging from your screen shot, your city was not even growing while building your 1st warrior, and you were probably working the 3-hammer plains forest tile, which stagnated your growth. The benefit of starting with putting a warrior in your 1st build queue is not only to build a unit for nearby scouting and defense, but to allow your city to grow to Size 2. If you don't do that, you might as well have started with a worker-first build queue instead.

4. As stated, you ventured too far away from your city to do scouting. Turning on Huts usually encourages this bad behavior where new players want to explore too far away just to grab those huts. You want to scout with your initial warrior as carefully as possible and not stray too far away from your borders. The point of scouting in the early stages is to look for a suitable site for your 2nd city, and not to find Huts or other civilizations. If anything, they will find you and make contact. And this is precisely why I said earlier that building scouts is a complete waste of time and hammers.

5. Iron Working is generally bad tech to go for, this early, especially at high levels like Immortal and Deity. That is because many AI civs prioritize this tech, thereby reducing your chances for tech trades later, and since they all have massive bonuses, attacking them with swordsmen will just not work at all. PERIOD. Instead, you should focus on essential basic worker techs and to Pottery, so that you can build cottages and granaries for faster growth. You should focus on growth and expansion at the start, as well as fog busting to reduce barbarian spawns.

6. Never ever ever use your worker to do scouting! They are fragile, cannot defend themselves, and they have much better things to do! You don't ever want to waste worker turns by not having them do tile improvements. If anything, I suggest you to completely turn off Huts. It only encourages bad behaviors like this.

7. 2560 BC and your capital is only Size 2 and none of your tiles are improved. And yes, on Deity, they do expand very fast. You might even get boxed in. And no, you won't be using your Axemen/Swordsmen to kill Sitting Bull. NOT at this difficulty level.
Henrik has a youtube video, Introduction to Immortal, Washington. It's not about immortal difficulty, it's about the basics.
From your first post some thoughts:
- Archery is a useful tech but you can usually do it a bit later, after key food and production techs like agriculture, animal husbandry, mining, bronze working. By strategically placing warriors to fog bust from barbs.
- 9 out of 10 times you automatically pick worker as the first build. The tenth time you think about it a bit and still pick worker.
- Don't settle cities very far from capital early. It has high maintenance and harder to defend a wide empire from barbs. For example that clam spot is not that good, and the fish/cow spot south of your capital is a lot better. In fact there are 3/4 good spots around your capital with fish and other food resources which you should settle before the far away clam.
I suggest starting with the guide posted by sampsa above, and if you can follow these principles and hit good empire growth milestones (e.g. 2 cities by 2800 BC, 3 by 2000 BC and maybe something like 10 by 1AD depending on space), and if you can easily beat the AI on Monarch or Emperor, then try at higher difficulty.

A note about barbarians in this game: unlike in civ6 for example they won't try to attack your cities until there are 3 cities on average per civilization, and on deity that's around turn 40, but quite a bit later at lower difficulties. Before that they can go for a worker that's on the edge of your territory, but even in that case BUG would warn you with a 'enemy nearby' message. So it's always safe to finish your worker even if your warrior dies. Also your warrior will almost always survive at full health defending against barbarian animals and warriors if you're in defensive terrain like forests or jungles, so plan your moves accordingly, and fortify on defensive terrain to heal if you're injured.
What level are you playing at?

1st build should of been a worker not warrior. Why you chose to scout with the worker i don't know. Why delay a 5/6 food corn and the gold?

Settler should be out 2500-2800.

After the first 30 or so turns here advice becomes a bit silly as you didn't really know what you are meant to do. On a good map 5 or so cities by 1500bc.
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