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Units with one movement point are useless

FenrysWulf

Evil Norse Wolf
Joined
Nov 17, 2001
Messages
373
Location
Naperville, IL
I've played all three Civilization games extensively, and one thing I'm never used is units with one movement point. Mobility - that's the key! Legions, Marines, archers, all have one thing in common. You move them up to the enemy city, where they sit while your turn ends, giving him a chance to kill them before they can even attack. Warfare requires units that can advance and attack in the same turn. Horsemen, knights, and calvary - this is what a successful army is made of. I'm sure some of you swear by these inferior units, but my legions of cavalry would destroy them. Oh, artillery - same concept. If I'm going to build a unit, I'll build one that will destroy, not just damage.
 
What happens if you don't have horses? Do you just quit right then? Multi-move units arent' as good as they were, and if the AI was at all competent on city defense (i.e. if it ever put more than three non-conscripts on a front-line city to go against your 20+ cavalry stack of doom), your blitzkrieg strategy could be easily foiled, at least until modern armor (equal numbers of fortified mech infantry will most always win over tanks, and rifleman or better will almost always take out more than their number in cavalry). And what happens if there are hills/mountains or 3+ tiles along the nearest path to the next enemy city? Aren't those mobile units just as much sitting ducks as unmounted troops are?

What's your solution to taking down size 20+ AI metros? Surely you don't go and waste perfectly good and healthy tanks (at however many shields apiece they cost, is it 100?) on suicide missions until you can brute-force your way past those nigh-invincible full-health infantry, do you?

Incidentally, what's the casualty rate of your troops? If you train a cavalry or a tank, do you expect it to be alive five turns from now? Ten turns? If and when multiplayer Civ III is possible, you'll be in a world of hurt trying to dislodge fortified rifles or infantry coupled with artillery on city defense without any artillery of your own. That the AI is incompetent on defense when rails are involved doesn't say anything about the inhereint superiority or inferiority of 1-movement units.

And about artillery specifically, think about it in long-term benefits. Your average throw-away cavalry (they really only have a small window of dominance...from Military Tradition, which isn't even a required Medieval tech, until Nationalism, which Scientific civs can get for free BEFORE Mil. Tradition). Anyhow, your average cavalry does how many points of damage before it kicks the bucket or retreats? 2? 3? A few may kill more than one unit before getting dispatched, but how many will get completely shut out before dying or being forced to retreat? And how many shields are you spending on these? Build artillery and that one piece (assuming you don't leave it unguarded and the AI captures it) is capable of doing dozens of hp of damage over the course of the game (more if you built it as a catapult at the beginning of the game and upgraded it over time) with no risk to itself. It doesn't move like cavalry or tanks, but it is invaluable for keeping attrition down to manageable levels. And if you are conquering a nation with rails in place, if you can attack it with tanks on the same turn, you can hit it with artillery, too. Of course, once you get Flight, then Bombers can be superior to land bombardment so long as the AIs don't have Flight, too, and shoot down your bombers.

Meh, you just play it your way and I'll just play it mine and the AI will be just as dead either way so we can both think we're correct.
 
In my Chieftan games fast units completely dominated... on higher levels the AI can actually defend its cities and you need a better strategy.

Combinations work nicely... there are some circumstances where the AI can't put up its defenses quickly enough and you can blitz over a town with mounted units. Also, if the AI has a huge, slow, lumbering army near one of your cities you can strike with mounted units to wear down their defenses, then retreat and heal up.
Lately, I've prefered a slow moving army because they are much more effective and my casualty rates are much lower. It takes more time but its worth it.
As far as artillery, its great for defense... but its lack of offensive use caused me to edit Canons+ in my game so they can move and shoot in the same round. Now they can be used offensively.
 
Originally posted by FenrysWulf
I've played all three Civilization games extensively, and one thing I'm never used is units with one movement point. . . . I'm sure some of you swear by these inferior units, but my legions of cavalry would destroy them.

If you never used them, how do you know they won't work?

In any case, I'm sure that someone could mount a reasonable defense against your "legions of cavalry." Combined arms can easily stop a monolithic army of cavalry. The simplest way is just hordes of riflemen, but better yet, riflemen, cannon and cavalry combined. Riflemen to defend the town; cannon to weaken your forces caught in the open; cavalry to pick off the damaged units; and riflemen to defend friendly cavalry caught in the open. Once you have exhausted your army in futile attacks, then combined forces could take the war to your cities.

Plus, having only one strategy, it is easy to be prepared. More specifically,

Riflemen are 6 on defense and cost 80 shields.
Cavalry are 6 on attack and cost 80 shields.

The defenders in a cities automatically have advantages, including defensive bonuses and healing. The cavalry do have the retreat option, at least some of the time. Nevertheless, it is apparent that a good defense can be mounted with just riflemen. Only combined arms, the element of surprise, or the ineptitude of the defender, can give the attacker the advantage.
 
if you put them on hill or other easy-defence terrain you won`t have a problem. And Legionaries - they are attack and defence in one unit - just throw 5 or 6 at a city and it will fall . Forget counterattack, but do bring two defenders along.
 
Even when I am attacking with a large number of calvary, I more often than not bring along defensive troops as well. It helps to counter the 'pick off the stragglers' routine. It may be a slow moving army, but I would rather it be protected.
As has been mentioned, a well fortified town will bloody far too many of those mounted units. Defenders (such as spearmen, musketmen, whatever unit that corresponds with that time frame) will not only help to twart counterattacks, and mop up when the mounties fail, but they can also be there to occupy and defend captured cities.

You learn awfully quick to never expose those valuable attackers (such as calvary).
 
You want to take ANY city easily? Use artillery. Blow them to bits as your units approach, take down their pop, weaken their forces, destroy inmprovemnts, theya re dead, and the greta thing is when they are so wounded, you won't lose very many of your ground troops once the assault begins.

In the industrial age, get a nice stack of 20 or more artilllery defended by 10 infantry and have 10-15 cavalry to lead the charge, pound them into dust and then walk in, its a breeze.

In earlier times its even easier for one-move units as the artillery only have one range so you just walk the stack right up to the gates, so in that case your attack can be made with mere swordsmen or longbowmen stacked with pikemen, you can sue your faster movement for pillaging, etc.
 
Originally posted by Killer
but do bring two defenders along.

Even with massed cavalry attacks, you should follow up with a couple of defensive units to hold the city and to provide a haven for cavalry on the retreat.
 
What hurts one MP units on the attack is the inability to use roads in enemy territory even if they have NOT been pillaged - this is a change from Civ II, and a bad one.

Roads should be usable (but not railroads) UNTIL PILLAGED by the defending civ. That way, attacking units could use them and the game would be less tedious.


BTW, knights should be 5.2.2. That would force them to attack with pikemen and cannon (to help hold ground). Realistic.
 
"this is a change from Civ II, and a bad one"

do you really want enemy cavalry and modern armor to be able to move 9 squares through your land? This would turn the expected multiplayer into little more than the howie-blitz of civ2. Also the aggressor who declares war could take most or all of the defender's workers that very turn, and pillage almost every resource! :eek:
 
To everyone who brings up the cost of those cavalry - I don't get involved in any major wars until I'm industrialized, and by then my cities all have factories, and most produce one cavalry every other turn. If I have 20-25 good cities on my home continent, that means I'm sending out at least a transport full every turn. Do they suffer casualties? Sure. But before version 1.17 most of them retreated before they died, so you could just rest them and use them again. Now it's more costly, but still doable. And the enemy never defends their city with 10 riflemen. In multiplayer this may be an issue, but against the AI it is not.
 
Originally posted by simwiz2
"this is a change from Civ II, and a bad one"

do you really want enemy cavalry and modern armor to be able to move 9 squares through your land? This would turn the expected multiplayer into little more than the howie-blitz of civ2. Also the aggressor who declares war could take most or all of the defender's workers that very turn, and pillage almost every resource! :eek:

Why a protected border is needed, and why REAL ZOCs are needed at least with fortresses.

You leave a border poorly guarded in depth, you WILL see what amounts to a blitz - happened to the Soviets in 1941.
 
Originally posted by FenrysWulf
by then my cities all have factories, and most produce one cavalry every other turn. . . . And the enemy never defends their city with 10 riflemen. In multiplayer this may be an issue, but against the AI it is not.

Hey, a little Horse Mounted rush now and again can be a lot of fun. And it certainly worked for Genghis.

(That doesn't make movement one units useless. Good point about multiplayer. I always play as if against a human player.)
 
Just to be clear, I do use one movement units for defense - I wouldn't think of defending all my cities with horsemen - but I don't think they're worth it for attack. The blitz is what it's all about - just ask the Polish after Sept. 1939. Still, if the AI stacks a bunch of swordsmen next to your city, you can kill them before they even attack, so you don't need good defensive units. The best defense is a good offense.
 
Originally posted by FenrysWulf
Just to be clear, I do use one movement units for defense - I wouldn't think of defending all my cities with horsemen - but I don't think they're worth it for attack. The blitz is what it's all about - just ask the Polish after Sept. 1939.

Your example is especially entertaining because the Polish had plenty of cavalry, indeed, were relying on it.

Nevertheless, horse-mounted units have been very important throughout most of history, just not always decisive. Having only one strategy means you are vulnerable to someone with a more varied repetoire, and unable to attack during long stretches of history. Also, keep in mind that your success is dependent on the ineptitude of your opponent (AI).
 
I do not care to use defence units, or slow moving units in the attack. And why? When I first decide to attack, I have so many attackers that I am really sure that the war it's over after few turns. I have one strategy, and it is to rush attack as fast as possible, and not give the opponent a change to rush build new units in the next turn. It is also good to avoid culture flip, because the enemy will be gone fast. Before I attack I also try to find out how I can wipe them out as fast as possible. 3 tiles attack, means cavalry attack, and 2 tiles attack, means tank attack. Blitz war, with a combination of bombers and nukes is the key to victory. :D
In my last game I managed to wipe out 5 civ's in 50 turns, and I believe that is not possible with a slow-moving attack.
So I don't see any use of defence or slow moving units, if you have the advantage, and the enemy is on retreat.
If you do not manage to take out the last 10 cities in the current turn only because you have to wait fore your slow moving units, you can be sure that those 10 cities will produce 10 more units that you have to fight against in the next turn.
;)
 
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