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Value of Stonehenge

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Strategy & Tips' started by Trout, Sep 2, 2016.

  1. Trout

    Trout Chieftain

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    Would like the forum's thoughts on this. I typically play Marathon Huge maps on Emperor/Immortal level and go for Domination victory. I just do not enjoy the intensity of Deity and the micromanagement of diplomacy that is required at that level; although I admire alot those who play & master it.

    Anyway, with my map & difficulty settings, it just seems as if Creative is extremely powerful trait. Because when I do not play a Creative leader, I am frustrated the whole game until around 1 AD from dealing with the delays in getting all non-capital cities their BFC. It really slows down your city development significantly. Building monuments require 90 hammers or a 1-pop whip then waiting 30 turns. Or getting a state religion and spreading it, which then can effect your diplomacy and require 90 hammers or 1-pop whip for the missionary unless you get lucky with the auto-spread. Libraries are another help, but then if you are not creative, they are expensive. :confused:

    So it just seems as if Stonehenge is the only solution. I typically will try to play a non-creative leader without Stonehenge because the 360 hammer investment slows you down alot in the very beginning. But then the lack of culture afterwards becomes too problematic. Of course capturing Stonehenge is sweet, but on a Large/Huge map, it often is not close enough to do that in the BC's.

    So it seems to me as if Stonehenge is pretty much the very best World Wonder of all for a non-creative civ and almost necessary if one is going for a Domination victory and planning on ending the game once Cuirs/Rifles arrive.

    Thoughts on the value of Stonehenge and/or the power of Creative which solves this whole dilemma up front??
     
  2. georgjorge

    georgjorge Deity Wannabe

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    I play Deity, so my experience might be a bit different. I never build Stonehenge because it's far too expensive early on when you have much more important things to build, plus I would have to start it at turn 10 or something to actually get it.

    Stonehenge for me is just a convenience that can easily be done without. How do I deal with not having it?

    Most important thing is settling pattern - always settle with the food resource(s) in the first ring! Your cities might not be optimally placed much later on but the short-term benefit is huge.

    Monuments I build in some cities. Sometimes you really want to reach that non-food resource (such as Gold) in the second ring, sometimes you can expect some cultural pressure.

    Religion spread is nice, and often the AI will do it for you. If you have chosen a religion there's no harm in spreading it yourself, if you don't then any religion is good for culture. It's a slow way of expanding borders but if you settle accordingly (see above) you can still do good things before borders have expanded.

    Cities you settle/conquer in the ADs won't have any problems with culture because by that time you can either whip out a Theatre or Library when they come out of revolt or run some Artists via Caste for a couple of turns.

    Oh, and I also LOVE Creative just because I can place my cities much better. And cheap Libraries. But the game can be played without it or Stonehenge as well ;)
     
    MAvL likes this.
  3. MyOtherName

    MyOtherName Emperor

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    Or to put it differently... the solution is not to settle your cities like you're creative.

    Quickly getting the full 21 tile BFC is a major perk of creative, and is arguably its most powerful feature. You simply can't reasonably expect to approach that without the trait.

    Thus, what you need to do is reset your expectations. When you look at what settling the city gains you, don't think about the whole BFC, since that's not what you get. Instead, you need to look at the tiles that settling will actually give you access too, and view the outer ring as something you can get through future expansion.
     
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  4. Lennier

    Lennier Emperor

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    Stonehenge is nice, but by the time I have time to build it, it's usually gone.* I just play huge, marathon, so there's usually lots of competition for wonders. I just deal with the delay in getting the first border pop.

    *Well, there was the one game where I has stone and marble nearby and built the GW, mids, and Oracle and saw that Stonehenge was still available so I decided to start it and get some fail gold. I failed to get the failgold.

    [Edit: Corrected "kids" to "mids."]
     
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2016
  5. nate46

    nate46 Warlord

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    my feelings about SH: Its a strong play on emperor or lower, rarely a good idea on immortal, and totally pointless on deity...

    reasons why its pointless on deity:

    1) You won't get it before the AI does, even if you rush it in your first city right after your first worker and growing to pop 4.
    2) The AIs get religion so fast that you'll probably get culture pops from random religion spreads anyway, so its not even as important.

    reasons why its bad on immortal:

    To have a reasonable chance of getting it you need to build it before ~2400 bc. This means you build it before your first settler which really sets you back.

    For stonehenge to really be worth it IMO you need to be in a position where you can build it after you already have 3 cities and adequate barb defense. This makes it really hard to get on immortal reliably. but you can sometimes get it luckily after expecting fail gold. You also probably don't want to build it in your cap unless you have some plan for a great priest.

    The other problem with stonehenge early on immortal is that barbs are so bad on that difficulty its really hard to justify building something like SH. Although the border pops help for forbusting and early warning... but you really need units... On Emperor you can get away with building stuff like that since barb defense isn't as urgent.

    The culture pops definitely do help though, esp on lower difficulties where there's less religion.
     
  6. MyOtherName

    MyOtherName Emperor

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    I find it interesting that you place value on building Stonehenge after you've established several cities, since (IMO) most of its value is in helping newly founded cities. It doesn't seem to make sense to build it that late, unless you were planning on rushing out 3-4 more cities.
     
  7. nate46

    nate46 Warlord

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    i build more cities than most people here... the OP probably does too, since he plays huge maps.
     
  8. nate46

    nate46 Warlord

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    to go into more detail for emperor stonehenge:

    typically you get your 2nd city down at about turn 30 (normal) and then you start building stonehenge there immediately while growing out and developing the 2nd city. By about turn 50 or 55, the 2nd city will be 3 or 4 pop with a stonehenge (or fail gold, which is useful at this point in the game, anyway)

    this will give you a 2nd early 100 culture city for the 3 ring borders. Your 3rd and probably 4th cities should be built before then and stonehenge will probably be their first source of culture. And then any subsequent cities (including conquered ones) also get the culture.

    if you build it in cap, you don't get the benefit of a 2nd 3-ring city, and you also have to deal with the great priest pollution.

    of course this doesn't work on immortal, since it usually goes sooner than that on immortal.
     
  9. Fippy

    Fippy Mycro Junkie Queen

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    Yup, well there are some exceptions like stone start and meeting no AIs.
    I usually build tgw then (cos deity barbs with no AIs around are reaaally bad), and if it's not gone and all set for tgw production already i might try Henge too.
    Mostly a failgold or easy border pops situation, when already safe with tgw.
     
  10. odin1981

    odin1981 Chieftain

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    I play really weird settings so whatever at least that is outta the way. If you really want to know ask me I'll reply specs if you want.

    If I am on prince or below because you literally can do it all before the ai does wonderspam, go religion, build up forces to take a early 2nd capital, all well teching and expanding.

    It isn't bad for a first gp if you want a HC shrine for early gold before currency. But the only case where that would make sense would be myst as a starting tech and I'd probably only do that if my traits where spiritual, and philosiphical.

    On emp and above unless you have a flipping amazing start 2-3 grassland riverside gems plus 2 wet corn or 1 ph gold and 2 grassland riverside gems with 2 wet corn.

    Though please not I have not ventured into deity yet I am only up to immortal.
     
  11. Takesitez

    Takesitez Chieftain

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    I'll sometimes build it on normal/immortal with Degaulle if I'm in a position where I have some land to grab and the barb situation seems easy (slim landmasses, easily busted, the Char trait really makes the build tempting). Even with him, I think it's a trap 90% of the time, for all the reasons Nate said. On emperor and below, any industrious leader basically gets half of the creative trait thanks to this wonder though.
     
  12. Trout

    Trout Chieftain

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    Thanks so much for all of the feedback and georgj-- got it right that some of my frustration will lessen by placing cities that can live with their first tile ring for a good while. I had not been able to figure that out on my own yet. It also in my mind just confirms how very powerful Creative is in the early game. Even their city sites are better because of their fast access to BFC. My fastest starts come from leaders who pair another good trait with Creative like Catherine, Louis, Willem, and Zara Y.

    I can see where Stonehenge is pointless on Deity. But on lower levels, with the exception of the Incas who are just silly overpowered across the board and semi-creative with their UB, it still seems to me as if Stonehenge is well worth it if on a large/huge map, you don't have to immediately jump out and start REXing to avoid being boxed in, and stone is available or you are Industrious. I also think the Great Prophet is all good in the early game for my settings of Marathon/Huge maps non-Deity. A Bureau Cap with Oxford/Academy is not as valuable as things that can scale across all of your 50-100 cities such as a holy city shrine or the Vassalage Civic.

    If I ever did play Deity, I am thinking Hatty must be one of the best leaders to get started with. Creative and Spiritual plus terrific UU
     
  13. georgjorge

    georgjorge Deity Wannabe

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    Yes, Hatty is one of the strongest leaders in my opinion. Creative helps you a lot in claiming land, and if you are still getting boxed in, there's always War Chariots for more cities ;).
     
  14. MegaLurker

    MegaLurker King

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    On Deity with several neighbours you get religion spread to you so fast that most of your cities will get a border pop long before you even think about building a library. It's a more important reason to open borders early than the eventual diplo bonus.

    Unless you really want an early Great Prophet for some reason (AP cheese victory?) and you can settle on stone AND you started with mining...building Stonehenge is more of a burden than a benefit.
     
  15. Noble Zarkon

    Noble Zarkon Elite Quattromaster - Emperor (BTS) Moderator Hall of Fame Staff Supporter GOTM Staff

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    Certainly on lower levels / Huge / Marathon SH can be a good play. A Shrine can make staggering amounts of gold on those settings.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  16. SnipedSoul

    SnipedSoul Chieftain

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    I never build stonehenge unless industrious with lots of forests to quickly chop it. Even stone doesn't make it worthwhile as spending precious beakers on mysticism + masonry so early is very expensive.

    The extra worker turns to build a quarry + roads are noticeable as well.

    Most of the time, my new cities have too much food and too few workers to avoid working unimproved tiles at size 2, so I just whip a monument.
     
  17. Kallikrates

    Kallikrates Prince

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    I hardly build it although I think on Emperor and Immortal it can be worthwhile, especially with an IND leader. On such levels one can certainly NOT count on AI religions to spread fast enough. They found them early enough but they might be far away and so is Writing and open borders (I am often the first on the continent to research Writing on Immo but I play Fractal, so most maps are not pangea). With an IND leader SH is cheaper (80) than 3 monuments (90) and takes about as much time to build as a settler; there is still a good chance to get it on Immo even if one builds a settler first, so if one expects to build more than two monuments, it might be worth a try, otherwise failgold does not hurt and ony will need myst anyway for the monuments.
    If one can get a few cities with nice stuff in the first ring or capital overlap SH might be waste (and beware the prophet contamination). Also if one plans to go for the oracle with CoL founding Confucianism: Capital does not need pops, second or third city becomes holy city and does not need a monument, remaining city gets religion by free prophet and does not need one, so SH would not be necessary and later one one can hope for religious autospread (although I don't think there is an aspect of the game where I have been screwed so badly as by non-spread of my own religion(s), and one cannot even reload...).
     
  18. Izuul

    Izuul Level 86

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    I think the potential fail gold from SH is worth more than the wonder.
     
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  19. Fippy

    Fippy Mycro Junkie Queen

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    I like that quiet a bit with myst starters, if you know another warrior is not really needed or if you do not want to finish one (settler when reaching size x for example) and hammers might decay, putting some hammers into SH is nice.
     
  20. elmurcis

    elmurcis Emperor

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    Well, I need stone (to settle on) or IND trait to actually get it in my games... (well, 17 AI on Deity -> Many many cities to do it worldwide even with randow stuff between GW, SH and Pyr). If it would 1 tech later (meditation maybe?) it would have higher value (still be able to send out 1st Settler)
     

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