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Unpopular civics

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Fall from Heaven' started by EverNoob, Dec 2, 2009.

  1. EverNoob

    EverNoob Chieftain

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    I tend to use a broad range of civics across different games, I let the map, civ, and situation dictate my civic choices instead of trying to stick to a favourite civic (Aristo-Agrarian comes to mind ;) )

    As a result I've managed to make most civics work fairly well. However there's a few civics i haven't tried, namely because I can't quite figure out how to exploit them properly. Or maybe they're just in dire need of tweaking to make them more attractive compared to more popular civics:

    Theology
    What exactly is this civic for?? Preventing non state religion spread is pretty pointless since inquisition is available for less hassle AND less technology. The unlimited priest specialists is also pointless. Running tons of priests seems suboptimal compared to running other types of specialists.

    Mercantilism
    No foreign trade routes is a huge penalty, the +20%:gold: bonus doesn't make up for it. The only time it looks like it could be useful is if you're at war with everyone and therefore have don't have open borders with anyone. But then, if I was at war with everyone, why would I waste time researching Mercantilism instead of some other military tech to destroy my enemies...

    Guilds
    I have no real complaints about Guilds (yet), it looks like it could be a useful civic if properly used. I just never got around to trying it out yet. I imagine with the Sidar, or combined with Sacrifice the Weak it could be very useful? But from what I gather, it seems like an unpopular civic too.

    It's possible I'm missing out on something that makes these civics (especially Theology and Mercantilism) worthwile. Does everyone have the same take on it as I do?
     
  2. JeffSteel

    JeffSteel Chieftain

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    From my (limited) expertise I would say that Theocracy is good for going for an Altar victory, or if you want to run lots of priests for gold and a bit of hammers in combination with upgraded Lunnotar Altar. For mercantilism, if most of your science and gold comes from specialists, and you have few to no coastal cities or trade routes with other civs, the gold boost might outweigh the lost trade routes. Especially if you have lots of gold generating altar empowered priests.

    Theoretically speaking of course, haven't really play tested it. Hell I rarely even finish my games. :king:
     
  3. Eshnunna

    Eshnunna Chieftain

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    Running craploads of priests becomes completely awesome with a few levels of altar thanks to the +x hammer bonus... Granted, ongoing altar is the only moment this civic is required. T'would be interesting to see if buiding a few altar levels just for the hammer bonus coulkd turn a hammer-poor land into a theocracy priests-powered unit factory.
     
  4. Neomega

    Neomega Chieftain

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    Theology gives +2 XP. That with conquest and apprenticeship means all units start out at level 3.

    Guilds gives unlimited engineers, which is great during golden ages (boosting chances of a a GE, therefore, chances of a free world wonder)

    mercantilism... needs something else.
     
  5. xalien

    xalien Chieftain

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    Guilds is a must have for infernals.
     
  6. Monkeyfinger

    Monkeyfinger Chieftain

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    Guild of Hammers + Guilds is a godsend for a production poor empire, or one that wants to pump troops out of every city for a military push.

    Theocracy is crap because you can priest spam in one or two cities without it and that's all you need for Altar - just pile a bunch of religions into the cities and build the temples. You shouldn't spend enough game with the late altar levels to ever gain much from having all your cities run lots of priests.

    Never seen a use for military state or consumption. The former tends not to do much because support costs aren't that relevant and units are too cheap in FfH to be worth drafting, and consumption is a happiness boosting civic that competes with better ones in the same category.
     
  7. CurseUppl

    CurseUppl The bureaucracy expands.

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    Military state is fantastic in huge maps where you have lots of cities and units, not to mention you can rush buildings with gold. I regularly run military state when I have a sizable income and a sizable army to boot.

    Military state is also a must for Clan of Embers, in my experience, due to the excessive number of units they can get.
     
  8. Dayen

    Dayen Chieftain

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    Theology is probably strongest for the Bannor paired with the Order and Apprenticeship/Conquest. If you've played your Bannor correctly, you'll be cranking out level 4 military units (and like level 6 disciple units -- which includes Crusaders in the case of Bannor). This becomes exceptionally powerful if you switch to Crusade and get demagogues. A literally well-experienced army crops up overnight and you're free to crush those pesky elves or whatever.

    It becomes somewhat more outlandish in Fall Further with Sergeants and Captains everywhere making your troops even more elite. You can literally run roughshod over everyone at once if you want to.
     
  9. Senethro

    Senethro Overlord

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    I think Mercantilism is fine, its just that its in the same column as Agrarian. Give Agrarian a late-game penalty and it won't see big usage but neither does Slavery or Pacifism.

    Guilds or Consumption could do with a little bonus from having Esus as a State religion. Something small and flavourful. Any suggestions?

    Theocracy: Easy. Double shrine bonus. State religion Holy City gets +2/city with religion instead of +1.
     
  10. cabbagemeister

    cabbagemeister Please wait...

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    I use Consumption all the time. In the mid-game, it's very competitive with the other options when 1) you're at peace (so Nationalism isn't better), 2) you're not running many specialists (so Pacifism isn't better), and 3) you have one or less religions (so Religion isn't better). At some point, the vast majority of my games have these characteristics.
     
  11. Ekolite

    Ekolite The Mighty Jungle

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    Consumption is one of my favourite civics, it certainly isn't weak. Especially considering the +1 :) to markets, a building that's cheap and that you usually want to build everywhere anyway.

    I also love to use theocracy, it can be very powerful in the right situations. Try stacking it with Arete and go for an Altar victory with someone like the Bannor. Very powerful. And don't forget that while priests are poor in the early game they quickly become very competitive with a few levels of the altar.

    Guilds is very competitive too. Free specialists are never bad. The main strength of this civic is the unlimitted engineers which are otherwise quite difficult to obtain.

    One civic that I never use thoughh is Caste System. Just doesn't seem to have much going for it.
     
  12. [to_xp]Gekko

    [to_xp]Gekko QCT junkie

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    caste system is great for specialist economy. I'm also a fan of military state ( goldrush ) and consumption ( gold )
     
  13. Senethro

    Senethro Overlord

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    Theocracy does have a use, priest spam for altar, but its in a category without enough diversity. It needs something to make it an option for some kind of mainstream empire. Extra shrine bonus would do this. It would also introduce a little bit of tension between Republics and Theocracies.
     
  14. EverNoob

    EverNoob Chieftain

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    The way I see it, the only real benefit of Theocracy is the +2 experience. The unlimited priests is a minor benefit, since it's pretty easy to build temples to assign more priests. I agree with Senethro that Theocracy needs some kind of boost to compete with City States/Aristocracy/Republic.

    Yeah Mercantilism can't compete with late game Agrarian. I think Agrarian is fine the way it is, as there's been numerous occasions where I found Conquest or Trade to be more useful. But Mercantilism provides little benefit for a civic that's at the end of a tech path. Maybe it could provide +1:gold: from Merchants?
     
  15. Humakty

    Humakty Happy Goblin

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    Mercantilism I never used 'cause like many I wonder what the point is. if agrarian wasn't the goto civic in its category, things could be different.

    Guilds comes too late, from a tech I rarely bother with, but I have used it once or twice, albeit when it wasn't important any more what civics I had.

    Theocracy is of use when you want extra powerfull units, I concur it could use a boost.
     
  16. Senethro

    Senethro Overlord

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    Agrarian: -25% hammers from forge.

    Of course, the only problem there is that forges are only good for Engineer slots or in your Heroic Epic/Wonder city. 240 hammers is too much to be worthwhile as a good build in most situations. If it were 180 then that would give Industrious trait a little lift and tempt people into building forges in 50% of their cities, so -25% hammers with Agrarian would be a real penalty.
     
  17. Ekolite

    Ekolite The Mighty Jungle

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    Interesting idea there, although I wonder if applying it to forges is a little too specific. Perhaps just a penalty to production in general, and remove the -1 hammer. Would -20% production be too much?
     
  18. DaveGold

    DaveGold Chieftain

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    I consider Theocracy to be slightly weak, fine if it was an early civic but poor for late game. Perhaps it really is a closing out civic, get those big end game battles won.

    Consumption is a very strong civic if you don't have a religion to finance your economy.

    Guilds and caste system are situational but certainly strong enough.

    Mercantilism is certainly strong enough if you can't get foreign trade routes. If I am in a plains area I would always try to find a way out of agrarianism, typically after Sanitation, so I don't see that as the default civic.

    I see foreign trade as a weak civic as cities seem very slow to get overseas trade routes, with or without this civic. even in the right situations. The theory seems right but the mechanics sometimes let it down.
     
  19. Senethro

    Senethro Overlord

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    My reasoning was that Agristocracy isn't the problem, its that Agristocracy is viable right until the late game when it slips easily into an SE. Give it a penalty to something that appears in the mid-game (forges, workshops, other industrial improvements) and suddenly Agristocracy players have a choice. They can either keep on trucking and ignore forges while CS/Republic players can build forges and catchup a bit, or they can flip into something else in the mid-game. But if they're going to go flipping they'd better have enough specialist slots or cottages to keep the economy running.

    Suddenly, Agristocracy is a choice with consequences instead of a braindead win button if your capital is beside a river.
     
  20. UncleJJ

    UncleJJ Chieftain

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    Mercantilism is much too weak, definitely the red-haired step child in that category for me. Losing the foreign trade routes is too costly and not compensated for by the +20% gold in many situations. Unless you want to amass a lot of gold (for upgrades or rush buying) and lower the slider as well as having considerable gold from shrines it is usually a loss to the overall economy.

    I think losing the foreign trade routes could be compensated for by adding +50% trade income which would increase the value of internal trade (the old trade goods have to go somewhere ;) ). This would be a very significant bonus to large inland cities that have to build both an Inn and a Tavern to get that level of stimulus.

    Alternatively, simply changing the +20% gold bonus to a +20% commerce bonus would be strong. That would mean it wouldn't matter where the research slider was set, Mercantilism would boost the commerce by 20% in all cities. That would be much more useful and compensate for the loss of lucrative trade routes
     

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