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Valid economies to fuel unit upgrade schemes?

Discussion in 'Fall from Heaven Strategy & Tips' started by phizuol, Nov 9, 2009.

  1. phizuol

    phizuol Chieftain

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    FFH has a lot of interesting upgrade paths for units, but unfortunately that route can be expensive in terms of gold costs if your plan is to build & promote regularly. Are there any good strategies for affording this kind of strategy without hurting your research too badly?

    I was thinking that since you will probably save a lot of hammers by upgrading you might be able to set some cities aside to build gold, but that just doesn't seem efficient. Maybe rely on a specialist economy for research and drop the slider way down instead? Or build research?

    I'm not really too good with all the numbers involved with setting up a good econ so I'm hoping someone much smarter will be willing to answer. =)
     
  2. Onionsoilder

    Onionsoilder Reaver

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    Upgrading units is actually inefficient. It costs more gold to upgrade a unit than it costs hammers to build a new one. Since cities building gold only convert 50% of the hammers to gold, that is the last thing you want to do.

    Specialists can provide enough gold to upgrade units, but I generally upgrade the strong ones (4+ promotions)and use the weak ones as cannon fodder. If you want to build an economy around upgrading, then play as an Ingenious leader, who get cheap upgrades(cheap enough were it is actually worthwhile to upgrade instead of building a new unit)
     
  3. phizuol

    phizuol Chieftain

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    I'm looking at upgrade paths such as Disciple of Leaves -> Ranger with Heal 1 + March. Expensive, but produces a superior unit than if you just build a Ranger from scratch.

    I didn't think about using specialists for cash and that's much better than building wealth.
     
  4. scutarii

    scutarii Chieftain

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    try balseraphs: freak upgrading either to archers or swordsman costs only 5 gold. More than worth when promos from mutations are good.
     
  5. readercolin

    readercolin Chieftain

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    Really, you shouldn't base your entire military around one particular unit. This means that you will have only need part of your economy for upgrading units, as you will only have 1-2 cities building the units that will later be upgraded. To get the money to do that, there are a number of things that you can do.

    1. holy cities - provide great gold if you spread your religion enough, combine with godking/bazaar of mammon with moving your capital to that city for extra bonuses
    2. specialists - assign a few specialists to merchant slots and you're good
    3. lower the research slider - best method for getting gold, but it also stifles your research
    4. buildings - market+temple of kilmorph+gambling house+money changer etc. in every city will produce decent amounts of gold. Combine with courthouses, basilica's, and law mana and your cities will have little enough upkeep that every city will be producing a profit.

    What I would do would be based on which strategy I decided to use. For example, I have a strategy with the khazid that I use sometimes where I place down tons of cities, packed very tightly (they can only work 1 ring around them, maybe a little more), which spam nothing but warriors, which then go to my few major cities for upgrading. With something like this, my entire army is based around upgrading, therefore, I will generally run godking/order(primary)+RoK(secondary) and run merchant specialists, settling any and all great merchants in my capital, which would also have the bazaar of mammon. I may also move my capital to a nice high food location. Research will also generally be run around 50% to 70% - with city spam like that however, I usually manage to generate enough research despite this.

    On the other hand, if I just researched a new tech and want to upgrade my units, I'll drop my slider down to 0 for a few turns, then turn it back up when I have enough units upgraded. For something like what you're talking about, I would try to have only one or two cities build the units that would be upgraded in this manner, and then have the rest be building buildings/other units/whatever, but prioritize commerce/gold and not production.

    -Colin
     
  6. phizuol

    phizuol Chieftain

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    I think I may need to just cut back on the number of upgraded troops that I use. I want to avoid your option #3 if possible, and I also want to avoid beelining for +gold techs because then I'm not getting the other techs I wanted to prioritize in the first place.

    The city sprawl idea sounds fun but I don't know if that's the kind of thing for me. =) The Godking, merch specialists, and a holy shrine plan seems like what I'll go for. I already do most of that but I haven't been using many merch specialists. If I do that and just drop the slider to 0% when needed I think I can get the number of upgraded units I need. I'll just have to build some from scratch as fodder instead of spending the gold to make an entire "perfect" army.
     
  7. Ekolite

    Ekolite The Mighty Jungle

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    How do you keep your Vaults stocked with so many cities as the Khazad? That strategy sounds more synergetic with the Doviello (Mahalla) then the Khazad I'd have thought.
     
  8. scutarii

    scutarii Chieftain

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    I have settled great merchant in foreign cities, usually it gives 1200-1500 :gold:; more than enough to keep 3 more cities overflowing...
     
  9. readercolin

    readercolin Chieftain

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    In all honesty, why would I want to keep the vaults stocked? Keeping just enough that there is no unhappiness is enough, additional is just gravy, but unnecessary. There are a few things that I do to make sure there is plenty enough money. Also, that doesn't work very well with the Doviello because once it becomes possible for them to build axmen, they can no longer build warriors.

    Now, for keeping the vaults stocked, there are a few things that I do. First off, I grab RoK, and build its temple in all my cities. Combining this with the market, and you get +5 :gold:, and +2 merchant slots. Getting enough food for two specialists (4 extra :food:) is fairly easy with the little cities, which means that each city is now producing +11 :gold:, not counting any other modifiers or sources. Later on, you can also grab a gambling house to make that 14 :gold:. The next thing that I do is take the holy city of RoK, and farm/get food however I can the heck out of it, but I also make sure that there is still some hammers. The holy building provides at least 1 merchant slot (maybe more, don't remember perfectly). Getting more merchant slots is a little trickier, but still possible. Then, move the capital there (optional, but helpful), run godking, and build the Bazzar of Mammon. With all the merchants running, you get plenty of great merchants. Settling them in this city gives you even more food and gold, and when modified by the godking bonuses and bazzar of mammon, a single great merchant ends up providing 15 :gold:. Add to this a tax collector/money changer, and that becomes +18 :gold:. Combining this with 1 gold for every city with RoK in it, which turns into 3 gold, and you have an awsome money producing city. Oh, and every merchant produces 9 :gold:. With an empire of 10 cities, running 5 merchants, and having say, 3 great merchants settled there, with RoK in every city, and the 8 :gold: from market/RoK temple/gambling house, (not counting any gold from commerce), this one city alone will produce 153 :gold:.

    So this means that I have 1 city producing 153 :gold:, and 9 other cities producing a minimum of 11 :gold:, for a total of 252 :gold: per turn. The downside is of course maintenence, which is why once my empire passes about 6 cities or so, I'll grab orders from heaven, stack law mana (i'll try to get 6, for a 30% bonus), and have courthouses and basilica's. This will all combine to 0 maintenence costs, even with a gambling house. Now, a warrior can upgrade to an axmen for a mere 34 :gold: (or so, IIRC). Or, it can upgrade straight to a champion for around 100 :gold: or so.

    The biggest advantage of this tactic however is being able to scrape together a massive force very quickly. Each of the little cities can produce a warrior in about 2 turns or so on average. Having gold in the bank, means that in the course of about 10 turns or so, you can build up an army of 50 axmen or champions. If say, I was going for axmen, then I could get 50 axmen in ten turns for the price of around 1500 :gold:. In ten turns, with the gold amounts above, I can get 2500 :gold: or so, not counting any gold that I were to get from commerce and whatnot. Naturally, there will be a little less than that coming in due to maintenence costs, but even if just the money from the gold capital actually ends up in my pocket, I still get around 1500 :gold:.

    Getting 50 axmen in ten turns means that I can rapidly assemble an army, and even against the AI on deity, you can get actually outnumber them. The only downside is you can't do the same thing with trebuchets... oh well. Another very important thing to remember here is to never ever build both an archery range AND a training yard in your minor cities, because then you won't be able to build more warriors. The last important thing is that I can assemble this massive army very quickly, which means that I can afford to have a smaller standing army. This means that when I'm not either at war or looking to go to war soonish, I won't be paying big maintenence costs on my smaller army, and my minor cities can do things like build wealth and whatnot (or start stocking up on trebuchets...).

    A big point to make about this strategy though is that not ALL of your cities are minor cities. Generally, I will have 1 major city (able to work the full ring around it) for every 3 minor cities, and my first 3 cities (initial settler, +first 2 built settlers) found major cities. Then I can found another 9 minor cities before I look to settle another major one, usually amongst the ashes of a long ago enemy. Each major city tends to work as a center that the minor cities send their warriors to to upgrade, and usually focus more on buildings and trebuchets/support units that my minor cities can't build. Another thing is that while I'll try and pack my minor cities tightly, I don't worry about them not being perfect - it matters little whether a minor city can work only 8 tiles, or if it can work 12, I'll just fit them in where I can, and they can even make use of marginal terrain. I will however try to make sure that they can work at least 6-8 tiles. They build a monument, elder council, market, temple of kilmorph, and gambling house, as well as a courthouse, and if I follow order, a basilica.

    Hope this answers your questions.

    -Colin
     
  10. Emptiness

    Emptiness []

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    I'm impressed; I think I'll give that strategy a try.
     
  11. readercolin

    readercolin Chieftain

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    I would like to note, with the strategy above, given a rather poor starting spot, I was able to get Mathmatics (and therefore the bazzar) around turn 200 or so. The biggest problem with it in the early game is that it is rather difficult for the khazid to rapidly expand, as they don't want their vaults to become empty (the only thing we're trying to avoid with this scheme), and unless you get a nice, high production good food starting spot, you expand at the same pace as most other civs, but are looking at covering 2/3 as much area with the same number of cities. Once you get arete however, you can use all that extra gold that would otherwise be saving up to fuel some rush buying of settlers and such. It is also sometimes a good idea to rush buy or kilmorph rush minor cities buildings, as they can then immediately start producing units to escort settlers for further expansion. I will say however that as long as you place your second city before you found RoK and you place it somewhere with decent food (can support multiple specialists), money really becomes no object for you. Even before the Bazaar, a great merchant gives you 9 gold when settled in your capital, which can often be more than enough to enable to you build up a surplus and run at 100% research. Priority techs would have to be RoK, Arete (to buy stuff in new cities/rush settlers), and festivals, with mathematics being the next beeline.

    -Colin
     
  12. phizuol

    phizuol Chieftain

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    Definitely some good things to think about. I gotta make use of this minor city idea. =)
     
  13. civ_king

    civ_king Deus Caritas Est

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    HOLY **** dang that is good

    If i were to do that I'd probably try to keep them overflowing for a nice boost, and then it's a gravy train all the way
     
  14. readercolin

    readercolin Chieftain

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    Another civ that this method is very good with is the sidar. Their primary form of commerce (if you play them that way) is through great people. Spamming units in this manner gives them LOTS of units, which can then be cannon fodder, and later be upgraded to something more powerful to get more xp. Note this - a warrior can upgrade through the archery or metal lines, a scout through the horse and recon lines. Their only downside is it costs them 2x as much money to upgrade as it does with the khazid. However, getting more great merchants, each of which give 21 gold in the capital kinda makes up for that.

    -Colin
     

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