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Unfinancial Civs (Need help)

RNevermore

Chieftain
Joined
Sep 4, 2007
Messages
7
Hey guys, I am a civ addict, and no matter how much i suck, i can't quit the game... so, since i can't quit, i guess i'll ask for help from some of you guys who obviously are way way better than me.

First off, I have had a relative level of success on the Noble difficulty, as a financial civ. But I want to progress to prince difficulty, and use an unfinancial civ (Boudica of the celts). My playstyle is not a builder, I push for military superiority and conquer my enemies making my empire large in the process, but i can't fund my large armies and many cities to save my life.

I rarely manage to get a holy city. And mostly, don't want to rely on getting a holy city to fund my empire.

I find that the game becomes nearly impossible to manage without financial civ, or a holy city, and i dont want to rely on these to win a game.

Any tips from the experts here? (PS: I like to play marathon games, 18 civs, huge maps if that helps)
 
i guess i'll ask for help from some of you guys who obviously are way way better than me.
That will have to wait, for now, you'll only have my advice =P

Usual ways of countering the cost of expansion:
- building courthouses in every city, whipping it if needed.
- discovering Currency soon. This allows trading routes between your cities (and foreign ones where it applies), selling of technologies to the AI to fund deficit research, and is on the way to Code of Laws which unlocks Courthouses (see above).
- building cottages and working them as soon and as much as possible in most of your cities (you only need a couple of cities for war/wonder production, and maybe a GP farm, so the rest should be cottages cities).
- ALTERNATIVELY, if you don't want a CE but a SE (i'm using the terms loosely for easy reference, so please don't nitpick or mention Hybrid Economies =P), farm new cities, use Caste System (another reason to get Currency->CoL), and have them use Merchants, so that they generate enough money for you to keep your Science slider high (which should allow your core cities with a lot of commerce to generate a lot of science while not worrying about money).
- don't keep every city you capture. Only do that if you think they can bring in more than they cost. They can cost a LOT if they're not close to your capital, and if you already have a number of cities. Sometimes, taking and razing is a good thing, since it cripples your opponent and brings you money in a lump sum.
- speaking of cities being far from your capital: do not hesitate to move your Palace, build the Forbidden Palace (needs a number of Courthouses for that, CoL ftw again), and Versailles later if you can manage it.

But don't worry, soon good players will come and give solid advice =P
 
I play the same size maps/speed. There are alot of excellent articles written on these forums that will give you good advice. I will offer some advice here

1) 18 leaders will make the map pretty cramped, even if huge. So get some preliminary territory, stabilize your economy, then expand again, stabilize, expand. Do not worry if you start with a few cities at first, expand to get the resources you need (copper/iron/horses/elephants) and other to help your economy (gold/gems, dye)
2) Use patience. A huge map at marathon speed takes a long time to play out (takes me a week, several hours a day). You cannot conquer all AIs with swords/maces or even cavalry/riflemen on these maps. You will need to get to tanks if not more.
3) Build up the economy. This means cottages, and teching Code of Laws and Currency early. Build courthouses pronto.
4) Play your AIs traits. If you are Boudica, try to take out one early AI to gain experience and land. Protect your core of experienced troops, do not throw them into needless battles to get killed. Check out the powergraph, if you are near the top you may have too big of an army early on.
5) Maximize the placement of the forbidden palace to reduce costs.
6) Run Specialists (means building libraries/markets) for money and science. Try to have one city where you can maximize Great people production (lot's of food) and build the national epic there.

Above all, be patient. Capturing 6 AI cities before you have currency or Code or Laws will put you in a big economic whole and stifle research.
 
organised might be a good trait to try, reducing maintaince costs and cheap courthouses

Good suggestion. Hammarabi or napolean would still give you one of the military traits to go with organized.
 
Napoleon kicks much ass. Organized will help keep you from lagging too far behind in tech while you extort or steal Currency/Code of Laws from your military or espionage victim(s).

I agree, the only thing is I think Napoleans UU got nerfed a bit in BTS. THe muskateers now keep up with Crussairs rather than Cavalry.
 
Even mighty Bodacious :p needs a little butter with her guns. And what guns they are.

A good Celt opener is to take out one foe with about 8-12 Guerilla II Gallic Warriors, who can race across the hills. Keep the capitol, raze the rest. Use the war booty to deficit research the key economic techs (code of laws, currency) and the techs that raise your happy caps (monarchy, calendar). Build cottages, especially on riverside tiles. Big cities > mulitple cities, particularly before you get all of the economic stuff put together. Once you have the economy chugging along, it's a lot easier to start founding cities and keeping the cities you capture.
 
even if you are not financial it is critical to manage your economy properly. running more than 6-8 cities fairly cottaged without currency is economic suicide.

in order to progress you need to get used to controlled expansion, or learn how to run a specialist econ but that is much harder to learn.

without wanting to interfere with your warmongering style I would recommend (assuming you have a nearby neighbor)

expand to 3-4 cities, and axe rush your nearest neighbor. their capitol will be juiced up on the map just because it is a starting location. finish off that civ if at all possible but stop your expansion at 6-8 cities.

tech towards a combination of swords and catapults, research currency and prepare to expand again. attack your next target but you need to declare peace when you hit 12 or so cities.. controlling gold pits or other high commerce sites might let you expand a little further.

you will need to be working as many cottages as you can to boost your econ, and sell off techs for gold if nessessary.

beeline to code of laws, and get courthouses in all of your cities. at this point you can safely expand to 16-20 cities.. just be mindful of maintanance costs. if you are dipping below 50% research you are crippling your midgame.

from there I would entrench and focus on your economy. your next big push will occur with macemen or knights depending on your tech levels.

you will need to start looking for a place for the forbidden palace. also you may need to build wealth in some cities if your financial situation really tanks.

I only ever win with domination victory.. so believe me I love the warmongerage. but if you do it in an uncontrolled fashion you will not be able to support your economy in the long term.


another completely different way to go about this.. look up the great wall gambits out there. producing an early great spy will seriously help you keep up in tech.. meaning you can spend more of your money on maintanance and less on research. this will only help you through to the medieval stage of the game and not much beyond that. even still the great wall is stupid cheap for a wonder (only 2 forest chops if you control stone, 4 without) and a great spy is rediculously powerful at that stage of the game.

hope this helps

NaZ
 
Agree with the above, just because you have crushed a city under foot doesn't mean you have to build on the wreckage (not until later anyway).
I don't bother with founding religions - capturing shrines is so much more effective.
At your level I don't think you shoudl be crippled by upkeep so I feel you must not be diverting enough cities to commerce. On medium size maps one industrial powerhouse can keep your military ticking over so don't divert too many to unit building. The benefits will be reaped by technologically advanced units which survive numerous battles.
 
organised might be a good trait to try, reducing maintaince costs and cheap courthouses

Probably the single most common misconception about the game. Organized does NOT reduce city maintenance - the cost per turn for all the buildings in your cities plus a penalty for city count. It reduces civic maintenance - the cost for maintaining your civic choices, which is based on your number of cities and population, but NOT on what buildings you have. Cutting actual city maintenance cost is what Courthouses do.

The Unique Building most commonly mentioned as the best in the game is the Rathaus, which is an improved courthouse that cuts city maintenance by 75% instead of 50%. If Organized cut city maintenance 50%, having an Organized leader would be the "I win" button - especially given that percentage bonuses add in this game, they don't multiply, so Organized + a Courthouse would eliminate city maintenance altogether.
 
just to add in thoughts for the later game. commerce cities are not production poor if they are worked early enough. once you get the right civics with a levy (riverside mind you) towns produce 2food 2 hammers and 7 commerce.. thats damn good

production can be augmented with creative constructions or mining inc at that stage in the game.. suddenly your cottaged cities catch up in productivity.

until monarch or so you really don't need more than 1-2 cities producing armies anyway. and one of them should have the heroic epic and later the ironworks if it can be arranged. a VERY powerful combo all the way through the game.

if you're not sure how to set up a city for production.. just farms and mines. workshops under caste system add an extra hammer now so a plains tile is equivelant to a plains mine under those circumstances. if you can support a pop of 6 than 3 farms and 3 mines is decent enough production for the early game.

hope it helps

NaZ
 
just to add in thoughts for the later game. commerce cities are not production poor if they are worked early enough. once you get the right civics with a levy (riverside mind you) towns produce 2food 2 hammers and 7 commerce.. thats damn good

production can be augmented with creative constructions or mining inc at that stage in the game.. suddenly your cottaged cities catch up in productivity.

until monarch or so you really don't need more than 1-2 cities producing armies anyway. and one of them should have the heroic epic and later the ironworks if it can be arranged. a VERY powerful combo all the way through the game.

if you're not sure how to set up a city for production.. just farms and mines. workshops under caste system add an extra hammer now so a plains tile is equivelant to a plains mine under those circumstances. if you can support a pop of 6 than 3 farms and 3 mines is decent enough production for the early game.

hope it helps

NaZ

This is all good advice. However, I'd add a qualification; that workshops start out giving only +1 hammer for -1 food. It is only with Guilds and Chemistry plus Caste System that a plains tile becomes equal to a plains hill (which is not a particularly good tile anyway :( ) Early in the game after Civil Service allows chain irrigation, it is usually best to run a plains tile as a farm and use the whip. It only gives a net 1 hammer but feeds itself and is ideal whipping fodder :whipped:

Regarding the original question about how to fund a large empire, you have to accept that it is not worthwhile even trying to build a large empire before you have Currency and Code of Laws. You are better off concentrating the efforts of your 3 or 4 cities on getting at least one of these two techs before expanding (or as your are attacking) and Currency is much stronger than Code of Laws in my opinion. As others have said once you have both techs then you can have any size of empire you like providing you build enough infrastructure (i.e courthouse and markets) in most cities. Your large empire gained through conquest is founded on hammers and they need to be invested in the cities you have as well as in the army that does the job. You just have to get that balance right.
 
with guilds chemestry and caste it is equal to a plains hill with railroad no?
 
Actually as long as you have alphabet, you can always survive any over expansion, by building research/running scientists. Maybe you could even do it with writing but I haven't attempted it yet. On an emporer game with shaka I took over and kept my whole continent of around 20ish cities with only bronze working, writing, priesthood/ researched because someone built the pyramids and stonehendge. So I chop rushed the oracle for alphabet, using a large handful of stolen workers, built as many improvements as possible, and then succame to strike.

Even in strike I as netting over 150 beakers per turn, by building beakers in all of my cities, once they finished ikandas. Col/currency came quickly, but even then still in strike. I finally got up to 10 percent around 200 bc but was still teching amazingly fast, and once workers could survive without strike I became a powerhouse. Intercontinental Invasion by way of calvalry/cannons occured before 1100 AD happily greeting ragnar's longbows leading to a quick domination.

So even when things look bad especially on lower difficulties, as long as you have at least alphabet(maybe writing will do) you can salvage almost any overexpansion blunder.
 
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