What Policy Cards you usually go for in your Games?

Leyrann

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Yeah I agree with those points, it doesnt have to be that way even if you get stuck with your policy choices.
It's just that civ 5's take on it was way too imbalanced, really (as well as having too few opportunities to max out different trees).

Fun fact, I started up my first civ 5 game in several years yesterday.
Went Maya (I figured an OP civ would help when being this rusty on deity) and had the most ludicrously strong start on a vast stretch of desert floodplains with Mt Sinai (+8 faith) right next to it, letting me pick Desert Folklore right from turn 5 (I told you this was a good start..).
It's also up in the corner of the map with only two neighbours, which means I have lots of space to myself to freely settle.

Then came the problem - should I start Tradition, Liberty or Piety?
On paper you'd think that the Mayan would be perfect to go Liberty (spamming lots of cities with that fantastic faith/science building at it's base), or Piety (focusing even harder on religion, since Desert Folklore + huge strip of desert Floodpains to fuel massive faith).
However, I just can't in good faith pick Liberty or Piety.
While the desert landscape is absolutely fantastic for faith and growth, there is only one luxury - incense.
I could settle away from the desert to get more luxes, but there are only a maximum of 5 different luxuries in the area, and that can't support 6-8 cities wide Liberty.
Piety is even worse off because it has no happiness policies at all, so I get doubly punished if I try to settle the desert area.
Also two of the unique luxures are close to one of my two neighbours, Attila (the most dangerous early neighbour imo, bar none), and neither Liberty nor Piety have any defensive bonuses to justify grabbing city space right in his face.

So, even though I have fantastic landscape for a religious game, and massive space to settle wide, I feel like I have to default back to Tradition because it's the only way I can get enough happiness, gold and defensive power to stay afloat.
And while I would love to go Tradition + Piety or Liberty + Piety to really benefit from Maya, that's a no-go because of how few times you can realistically pick policies (Rationalism is almost mandatory after all) before ideologies (100% mandatory).

TL;DR: It's bad game design when even the civs that apparently are designed for different playstyles, all get shoehorned into the same cookie-cutter build.

And this is why I don't play Civ 5 anymore. The entire game is ruled by Global Happiness and the punishment of any attempt to expand, be it peacefully or warlike; through Global Happiness hits, increasing tech costs, increasing civic costs, civic imbalance, and so on and so forth.

The Civ 7 civic/culture system should look to Civ 4 and Civ 6, and as far as I'm concerned they can - and should - completely ignore Civ 5.
 
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kaspergm

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TL;DR: It's bad game design when even the civs that apparently are designed for different playstyles, all get shoehorned into the same cookie-cutter build.
I agree, when I played Civ5, I had modded the policy trees (as well as other parts of the game), to make them more balanced for my taste.
 

GrumboMumbo

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And this is why I don't play Civ 5 anymore. The entire game is ruled by Global Happiness and the punishment of any attempt to expand, be it peacefully or warlike; through Global Happiness hits, increasing tech costs, increasing civic costs, civic imbalance, and so on and so forth.

The Civ 7 civic/culture system should look to Civ 4 and Civ 6, and as far as I'm concerned they can - and should - completely ignore Civ 5.

I don't think the happiness system in Civ5 was perfect, but conversely we have also seen with Civ6 that if we remove punishments from the game and instead provide too many benefits to expansion, then going wide becomes the default option, and then we end up with the same issue, but now in reverse.

I think all of this comes down to balance rather than how the features actually work. This is something I noticed when watching Ed Beach's GDC talk from a few years ago. He talked about what went wrong with Civ5. In that segment he talked about the Tradition/Rationalism problem, but instead of the solution being to better balance the Policy trees, firaxis decided the solution was to introduce new systems. And guess what happened...those systems are also unbalanced and lead to the players attacking the game in a very similar way each game.

My one wish for Civ7 is that they consider game balance a higher priority than creating a brand new policy system, if that makes sense...
 

Leyrann

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I don't think the happiness system in Civ5 was perfect, but conversely we have also seen with Civ6 that if we remove punishments from the game and instead provide too many benefits to expansion, then going wide becomes the default option, and then we end up with the same issue, but now in reverse.

You mean... just like how empires in the real world expand until they hit the borders of other empires?

This entire "wide vs tall" discussion didn't exist until it was arbitrarily introduced in Civ 5. Let's leave it in the crap game and not ruin the good games in the series.

Also I'm currently playing on Deity, Industrial Era, and there's still open spots of land on the map. If anything, there's less expansion than what's realistic.
 

GrumboMumbo

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You mean... just like how empires in the real world expand until they hit the borders of other empires?

This entire "wide vs tall" discussion didn't exist until it was arbitrarily introduced in Civ 5. Let's leave it in the crap game and not ruin the good games in the series.

Also I'm currently playing on Deity, Industrial Era, and there's still open spots of land on the map. If anything, there's less expansion than what's realistic.

I think that's where we differ, I don't care if things are realistic, I just want a fun game.
 
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Leyrann

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I think that's where we differ, I don't care if things are realistic, I just want a fun game.

I don't find empty swaths of land and being punished for expanding fun.

If I play a game that's about eXploring, eXpanding, eXploiting and eXterminating, I want to be doing that. I want to explore the world, expand into it, exploit the resources and exterminate my opponents by taking over their land.

I don't want to be constrained to four cities because expanding and exterminating is objectively a bad choice.
 
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I don't think the happiness system in Civ5 was perfect, but conversely we have also seen with Civ6 that if we remove punishments from the game and instead provide too many benefits to expansion, then going wide becomes the default option, and then we end up with the same issue, but now in reverse.

Not sure if I agree there.


In my current civ 5 game as Maya, I know perfectly well what is needed to make Liberty and Piety work for me over Tradition, without turning it into civ 6 ICS.

Liberty needs at least one extra happiness from each settled city (up from 1), and a static gold bonus of 3 per city. Maybe also +1 production from mines/pastures over bonus resources - that takes care of the worst problems, and Liberty's tree is otherwise fine and competitive with Tradition. You still wouldnt want to settle more than 10 cities that way and definitely not let them grow tall, which isnt much of a change from today.

Piety similarly needs +1happiness and culture from each religious building (shrine, temple, unique religion building), which would still make Piety take longer to snowball compared to Tradition, but would eventually be competitive in the mid game and allow for 6-10 cities wide low pop cities (like Liberty, but faith and culture focused).

And hey presto, Piety and Liberty would now be attractive picks for me under the right circumstances, without becoming civ 6's "settle as much and dumb as you want without consequence".
 

Leyrann

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And hey presto, Piety and Liberty would now be attractive picks for me under the right circumstances, without becoming civ 6's "settle as much and dumb as you want without consequence".

Ah yes, because it's certainly a good idea to spent 25 turns churning out a single Settler.

And that tundra/snow city is definitely going to pay off.

Civ 6 also has limits on expansion if you want to play optimally, they just aren't as frustrating and in-your-face as Civ 5's terrible mechanics.

To give a bit of an idea, if you watch a multiplayer game of the best Civ 6 players playing against each other, significant areas of the map remain unsettled because it's not worth settling more cities. I'd say at least 15-20%, probably more if you fully count the tundra and snow.
 

GrumboMumbo

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Not sure if I agree there.
In my current game as Maya, I know perfectly well what is needed to make Liberty and Piety work.
Liberty needs at least one extra happiness from each settled city (up from 1), and a static gold bonus of 3 per city. Maybe also +1 production from mines/pastures over bonus resources - that takes care of the worst problems, and Liberty's tree is otherwise fine and competitive with Tradition. You still wouldnt want to settle more than 10 cities that way and definitely not let them grow tall, which isnt much of a change from today.

Piety similarly needs +1happiness and culture from each religious building (shrine, temple, unique religion building), which would still make Piety take longer to snowball compared to Tradition, but would eventually be competitive in the mid game and allow for 6-10 cities wide low pop cities (like Liberty, but faith and culture focused).

And hey presto, Piety and Liberty would now be attractive picks for me under the right circumstances, without becoming civ 6's "settle as much and dumb as you want without consequence".

I'm not sure what you are disagreeing with in the post, I agree with everything you put there. Most mods that fix the civ5 policy trees only require small tweaks to Piety and Liberty to make them work, and getting lots of early expansions out was always strong with a religion (even in vanilla civ5) because the passive spread between cities is quite strong compared to civ6. And Maya has a really powerful UB, so they are good at expanding!

So that's all I was trying to say in my original post, all these policies need are some better tweaks/balances, and now we have more options and different ways to play the game. In my completely subjective opinion, that is more 'fun'.


I don't find empty swaths of land and being punished for expanding fun.

If I play a game that's about eXploring, eXpanding, eXploiting and eXterminating, I want to be doing that. I want to explore the world, expand into it, exploit the resources and exterminate my opponents by taking over their land.

I don't want to be constrained to four cities because expanding and exterminating is objectively a bad choice.

That's totally fine, that is your subjective opinion about what fun is.
 

GrumboMumbo

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Ah yes, because it's certainly a good idea to spent 25 turns churning out a single Settler.

And that tundra/snow city is definitely going to pay off.

Civ 6 also has limits on expansion if you want to play optimally, they just aren't as frustrating and in-your-face as Civ 5's terrible mechanics.

To give a bit of an idea, if you watch a multiplayer game of the best Civ 6 players playing against each other, significant areas of the map remain unsettled because it's not worth settling more cities. I'd say at least 15-20%, probably more if you fully count the tundra and snow.

I agree that civ6 has limits to expansion too, which kinda conflicts with your previous post about painting the map with borders until there is no land left. Both games have limitations on expansion and growth, and I think the civ6 system of amenities and housing is probably better than civ5s happiness system, but I think both systems are actually quite similar, just displayed differently. Civ6 also has a global vs local happiness system just like civ5.

I don't want to derail this thread with the dreaded 'tall vs wide' debate, it's been had a million times already in other threads. To bring it back to the policy cards of civ6, I agree with what some people already suggested about having some policies that stick around longer and some (maybe less impactful ones) that can be swapped more often.

To end, I don't think civ6 has been left in a bad way, I find 'playing the map' to be so enjoyable that I don't want to return to previous editions of civ. I just think the policy cards themselves never really got the balance pass they needed during the NFP patches, and that's a bit of a shame.
 
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Ah yes, because it's certainly a good idea to spent 25 turns churning out a single Settler.

And that tundra/snow city is definitely going to pay off.

Spending more time on a settler is the cost of going Piety vs Liberty, and a perfectly fine tradeoff. I dont see the problem here.
Good design makes for clear differences and tough priorities, without making one pick overall superior.

I dont understand why you mention snow/tundra cities, because my entire post was about how you want to selectively settle wide cities (usually around 6-10). You cannot do that in civ 5, and the tweaks I listed dont allow for that.
I suggest you read my post again before commenting, noone here was advocating civ 6 style ICS (I even explicitly stated that).
 

Leyrann

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That's totally fine, that is your subjective opinion about what fun is.

I got the idea from your post that you were arguing that a game about eXpansion should not have expanding as one of it's core mechanics. If I'm wrong in that interpretation, my apologies.

Spending more time on a settler is the cost of going Piety vs Liberty, and a perfectly fine tradeoff. I dont see the problem here.
Good design makes for clear differences and tough priorities, without making one pick overall superior.

I dont understand why you mention snow/tundra cities, because my entire post was about how you want to selectively settle wide cities (usually around 6-10). You cannot do that in civ 5, and the tweaks I listed dont allow for that.
I suggest you read my post again before commenting, noone here was advocating civ 6 style ICS (I even explicitly stated that).

I was reacting to the latter part, where you were talking about Civ 6, and pointing out that Civ 6 is not "settle as much and dumb as you want without consequence", as you claim it is.
 
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I'm not sure what you are disagreeing with in the post, I agree with everything you put there.
My bad then, I must have misread it.

I was reacting to the latter part, where you were talking about Civ 6, and pointing out that Civ 6 is not "settle as much and dumb as you want without consequence", as you claim it is

I dont claim that it necessarily is that way, but you can play it that way without any real consequence if you dont care about setting any speedrun records.
I usually never settle something like (random number) 20+ cities, but there is really nothing that prevents me from doing so if I want to fill out every spot on the map.
Especially with faith/gold buying districts, garbage cities on tundra can become relatively productive in short order if that's what you desire, even if suboptimal from a speedrun perspective.
Not saying it is right or wrong to play like that and settle almost every spot, but civ 6 allows for that, no problem.
Heck, I had some games I played for fun where I just wanted to see how absurdly many natural parks I could place, and did exactly that - painted the map with cities, bought all the tiles, planted forests and natural parks to push the tourism into truly ludicrous territory.
 

Leyrann

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I dont claim that it necessarily is that way, but you can play it that way without any real consequence if you dont care about setting any speedrun records.
I usually never settle something like (random number) 20+ cities, but there is really nothing that prevents me from doing so if I want to fill out every spot on the map.
Especially with faith/gold buying districts, garbage cities on tundra can become relatively productive in short order if that's what you desire, even if suboptimal from a speedrun perspective.
Not saying it is right or wrong to play like that and settle almost every spot, but civ 6 allows for that, no problem.
Heck, I had some games I played for fun where I just wanted to see how absurdly many natural parks I could place, and did exactly that - painted the map with cities, bought all the tiles, planted forests and natural parks to push the tourism into truly ludicrous territory.

And in my opinion, that's exactly how it should be. Suboptimal, but possible. Leave players the freedom to do whatever they want without feeling constrained by the game, but make the measured option the best option.
 

localdisk51

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You mean... just like how empires in the real world expand until they hit the borders of other empires?

This entire "wide vs tall" discussion didn't exist until it was arbitrarily introduced in Civ 5. Let's leave it in the crap game and not ruin the good games in the series.

Also I'm currently playing on Deity, Industrial Era, and there's still open spots of land on the map. If anything, there's less expansion than what's realistic.

It absolutely did exist in history. I can't believe no one has challenged this claim yet. Empires that expanded too aggressively almost always suffered revolts and civil wars, and eventually collapsed, breaking up into smaller countries. The vast territories the huns and mongols conquered didn't stay united for long. Rome was the exception, and it struggled to keep itself together for as long as it did. Moreover, they delegated a lot of their power, allowing local rulers to stay in power so long as they paid taxes to Rome and followed them into war if needed. Britain did something similar. Essentially, most of their cities were really more like puppet cities in civ 5. Having a large empire and maintaining full control over all cities just didn't work until modern times. Now we can do it since we can communicate instantly across any distance and travel quickly to address problems.
 

Archon_Wing

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I usually straight up run urban planning for most of the early game + anti-barb card or +military production card. I go God-King if I need a certain early pantheon but it seems futile to compete for the ones that go early anyways and being left with stuff like Divine Spark as there is no need to rush that. Obvious things like settler cards when building settlers and builder cards when getting builders goes without saying And adjacency cards when I need a certain yield.

Mid game I try to run Veterancy if I can build Harbors and really want the Merchant Confederation (+1 gold/envoy), Wisselbanken is also really good and these two things combined can support my entire economy for whatever.

Because I prefer culture wins, I'm also running limes for most of the game. I also like all the wonder cards and Retainers.

Colonial Taxes is very strong later in the game.

There's very few cards I would never use. Even bad ones like the housing ones have situational uses like getting a district up to a certain pop for a new district and withdrawing it. The most useless cards are Grand Opera/Free Market ones due to horrible scaling. As well as stuff like Native Conquest or those plane building cards (just buy them at that point). Oh, and that scout card which is only taken by Germany because no other choices.
 
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reddishrecue

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I usually begin with the economic +1 hammer in every city and the barbarian card which gives bonus against barbarians. When next tier of cards appears, I get whichever type of government I need depending on if I'm at war-Oligarchy, if I'm making wonders-autocracy- and if I'm just alone and have no one around I get classical republic. I usually get revelation and diplomatic league at the beginning to get the great prophet depending on the civilization that has its religious bonuses or availability based on what the great prophets are in the great people or religion sections. If not revelation, then I go for the +2 great scientist point for the great scientists. When the next tier comes along, I'll add something like natural philosophy or for golden ages monumentalism. I would get Serfdom for workers, conscription for gold and the diplomatic policy that gives gold per envoy. Later on, rationalism, professional armies or academy of the sciences. From space race I would get censorship if there's too many concerts around.
 

aieeegrunt

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I usually straight up run urban planning for most of the early game + anti-barb card or +military production card. I go God-King if I need a certain early pantheon but it seems futile to compete for the ones that go early anyways and being left with stuff like Divine Spark as there is no need to rush that. Obvious things like settler cards when building settlers and builder cards when getting builders goes without saying And adjacency cards when I need a certain yield.

Mid game I try to run Veterancy if I can build Harbors and really want the Merchant Confederation (+1 gold/envoy), Wisselbanken is also really good and these two things combined can support my entire economy for whatever.

Because I prefer culture wins, I'm also running limes for most of the game. I also like all the wonder cards and Retainers.

Colonial Taxes is very strong later in the game.

There's very few cards I would never use. Even bad ones like the housing ones have situational uses like getting a district up to a certain pop for a new district and withdrawing it. The most useless cards are Grand Opera/Free Market ones due to horrible scaling. As well as stuff like Native Conquest or those plane building cards (just buy them at that point). Oh, and that scout card which is only taken by Germany because no other choices.

I laughed pretty hard at the Scout Card comment because Germany early game is literally the only time I have ever used it
 

CoconutTank

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I usually have Conscription and Levee-En-Masse slotted indefinitely.

Early game, I'll slot in Urban Planning if I have a source of Faith before I'm able to slot it, otherwise I slot in God-King until I get a Pantheon. Once I get a Pantheon, God-King gets replaced with Urban Planning. Either way, Urban Planning usually stays in until it's obsoleted.

Everything else is a little more up in the air, depending on the circumstances.
 
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