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upgrade water tiles


Oct 10, 2008
in my judment, water tiles arent good enough compared with any other tile. 2 food with lighthouse is just not enough.

they definetly need an upgrade in food / production / gold

regular grassland at a river is 2 food 1 gold without any upgrade. later on with a farm and right tech / civ its 5 food and 1 gold while a lighthouse needs forever to be built just to hit 2 / 1

they worst part, if you have water tiles in your city but arent right at the ocean and cant built a lighthouse (that definetly needs to be fixed by the way; you always should be able to built a lighthouse / harbour as long as you have water tiles and a road) and its 1/1

water tiles should be (with light house) with a certain tech or another building at least 3 food 3 gold, maybe even add a hammer.
Early game if I make the often regrettable decision to build on the sea, and I manage to nab heron throne... water tiles still suck. Ditto with financial. I'm still mad at each little blue bastard dragging my city down to suck.

So yeah, I'd say a hammer and a commerce isn't enough, maybe food.... I dunno, but I still refuse to build sea cities unless there are at least two food resources out there in range.

Post script: I guess the extra trade routes are nice, but I really don't notice them without light houses, and the great lighthouse, and even then.... very meh.
Several things give extra trade routes to coastal cities.

I try to have at least 1 of each sea based resource.

Aren't coastal squares 1:food:/2:commerce: to start and get up to 2:food:/3:commerce: with light house and techs?

I try to minimize water tiles and/or maximize water resources, but more important to me is getting the maximum # of cities on a landmass. I would rather have 15 cities with 6 hanging out over water, than 11 that were landlocked.

I do agree, however I would like a way to get a lighthouse on a city that is not on the actual coast OR at least if it is on a Lake. I hate building on what I THINK is a coast only to find out later it is a lake and I can't build a lighthouse.
In my fantasies, there is a new type of water tiles which appears where a river hits the coast. They're called deltas, and they provide 2 :food: 5 :commerce:. This setup helps makes settling by rivers mouths a more natural and advantageous choice, similar to actual early settlements.
I do agree that most water tiles are useless. If you are financial and have the Heron Throne in your city that city is pretty good but a land locked city can easily be better. The idea to be able to build a lighthouse when you aren't exactly on the coast is a good idea to me but a harbor too seems like a little too much. Harbors make up for health you wouldn't normally have on the coast due to the lack of trees.


Mailbox's mod sure can make water tiles better and economics just better in general so you may want to try that sometime.

I would like it if water mana made it so you might find new water resources in water tiles like earth does for mines. I also would like a new water resource. Exotic Fish could be a happiness resource that gave one more food than base and a fair amount of commerce.

I really like the idea for deltas but I think they should give more food than commerce because those areas were nutrient rich.

Water tiles have no discovery. You always see what is there. A later resource at Optics would make things much more interesting on the coast.
Perhaps a building with the OO religion. Seeweed farms for one additional Food.

Or frosen Ocean used by Illians ?

The water is mostly not interesting.
There could be an OO only ritual that causes additional sea resources to spawn in your territory. Like Rites of Ogma, but for crabs and whales. Of course, as with any sea tile improvement you have to ask if it's going to make the Lanun too powerful. They already skirt the edges.
Building on the sea is great because of all the extra commerce you get, by the late game some of my earliest port cities have eight connections giving an average of five extra commerce each. Not only do port cities tend to connect with other continents and other civilizations giving huge bonuses, a lot of coast only improvements increase the number and quality of connections. Then there's that civic that gives plus two coastal connections. I don't see building on a coast as that big a problem.
Yeah, I think the Lanun are already quite powerful on the sea, any more bonuses would be imbalancing. Otherwise, the mechanics are very much like normal civIV - do you have problems there? I'd even think FfH is actually a bit more generous with trade. One thing I'd suggest if you're really concerned is not to play a water heavy map in the first play (who would play FfH on archipelago...?) - Erebus or just land maps like Pangea seem to work (and land exploration is already much more of the game focus).
There are several "naval" techs that could be used, perhaps allowing fishing boats to build coastal villages and deep sea fishing nets, gosh what mod was that in, I would like to see something that would let a player use ice squares also, (but not to much, 1 food ans 1 coin) on land and sea.
Up food production by 1 for almost everything (desert and ice excluded, Illians get more on ice though) and then increase the base food consumption to 3. You might, or might not want to increase irrigation food from 1 to 2. Perhaps it would even be cool to leave hell terrain as it is, so it is (even) more difficult to have big cities there. Finally, give another +1 food to water for something (harbor? too early?), available to all civs except Infernals who never get food anyway. Lanun still get more food than other civs on water, but the relative difference is smaller.

I'll try it myself. Anybody else interested?

EDIT: Don't forget to change sacrifice the weak or you will get absurd results.
Oh the Irony:
Too be or not to be; that is the question;
Weather 'tis nobler for the mind to suffer
the horibble non-value of water;
Or to choke oneself of trade on landlock cities-
That is the question.

As my strangled verse says, I you settle a coastal city, you have to deal with the wortlessness of water, but is you build a landlocked city, then you suffer for trade-losing out on all the coastal trade binifets-with the added insult of not getting any navy.
I still need to increase hill food penalty, but it seems to me coastal areas are livable. Perhaps too much so. On the other hand, unless you have lots of hills, the city will be very poor in hammers. Could serve as a gp factory though. I have yet to try Lanun with my changes, I hope I did not give them too much of an advantage. On the other hand, Lanun no longer have their own piece of the world nobody else wants. My Bannor absolutely loved coastal cities. And inland cities.

As a side effect, I managed to nerf elves with their ancient forests by accident. I only thought of it when I saw my neigbors were Faeryl and Amelanchier.
It *is* really important to remember that any benefit given here will be given to the Lanun too, who are already insanely powerful on coastal areas with their ports. If you do this, as someone mentioned earlier, it might make them a little *too* powerful, you know?
In any case, I think it is way to go to make seas different from land in that they can not be improved by tile improvements, but by city buildings. Seas should have the advantage of being non-pillagable, and to have no need to be improved by workers or workboats. Instead they should be improvable by city buildings.

So in my mind, I'd stay away from seaweed farms, but instead add +1 :commerce: to each sea tile to harbor building, just like lighthouse does for food.

As a big vision - I'd like to cut workboats, and instead sea resources should be automatically gained as soon as they are within borders and not blockaded by enemy. Not only it would help Kuriotate issue, and AI issues, it is also more fun and helps to add uniqueness to the seas.

Also, there could be more sea buildings. They could be revised. Like:

Fishery: +1 food from seas, +1 health from sea resources, avail. with fishing
Lighthouse: +1 trade route, +25% trade route yield
Harbor: +25% trade route yield, +1 commerce from seas
Then late game, expensive building like Grand Port that provides additional trade routes/yield or additional +1 commerce from water tiles.

I'm not counting Heron Throne at all, since it's wonder and it effects only one single city on Erebus, so it ain't really useful for balancing. But I'm okay at seas being hammer-poor. Stick a mine, lumbermill or workshop in few land tiles to get industry.

As a balance issue, rather than adding late or mid game building that adds +1 hammer to seas, ala heron throne, I'd rather add an early and cheap building that provides +2 hammers to city, ala market or elder council. It may or may not be limited to coastal cities only. If it is coastal only, call it for example shipwright, and let it also add +2 xp to ships.
i understand the lanun part, but i wouldnt mind. i also understand that for regular tiles where you can built improvments, you have to built them at first. water tiles (regardless how good/bad they are) you can use right away. maybe for balancing, you would have to use a single work boat to improve a water tile for lets say +1 food.
I don't mind Coastal squares. What I absolutely hate, though, are Ocean squares. Want to talk -completely- useless, talk Ocean.
Now try to have a nice little town with a sea view, without having at least 3 squares of Ocean. Godammit.

Edit: Oh, and please have Heron's Throne apply to all the cities - if possible, maybe just cities built in that oceanic "continent", so that if you build it in a puddle, only cities around the puddle gets the benefit. :D
i understand the lanun part, but i wouldnt mind. i also understand that for regular tiles where you can built improvments, you have to built them at first. water tiles (regardless how good/bad they are) you can use right away. maybe for balancing, you would have to use a single work boat to improve a water tile for lets say +1 food.

Or you could add some new resources. Reefs (which damage ships by 5%) and Kelp (Food bonus) spring to mind.
also, about balancing:

if every civ gets +1 food on water tiles its an upgrade of 50% food (from 2 to 3 food) and for the lanun only 33% (from 3 to 4), so the benefitt for other civs is higher.
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