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Why does the AI settle cities directly next to yours?

Discussion in 'Civ5 - General Discussions' started by sunbeam, Jun 10, 2015.

  1. sunbeam

    sunbeam Chieftain

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    I guess it is self explanatory. It seems to me that it will pass up better city spots to settle directly next to you.

    Is is some kind of eventual war strategy or something? Because I sure don't get it.

    I played a game last night where Morocco did this. I was getting ready to annihilate him when the Hawaiian snitch made his inevitable appearance and immediately became friends with him.

    I can't count how many times I've had a city state next to valuable natural wonders or some civ like Morocco needed to be wiped out, when this jerk shows up as if he is the world's busybody - "I'm telling, I'm telling!".
     
  2. ThorHammerz

    ThorHammerz zzz

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    The more "Boldness" an AI leader possesses, the higher priority settling next to another player's city will become for him/her. So in a sense, yes some are hard-wired to forward-settle you.
     
  3. historix69

    historix69 Chieftain

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    If AI looks for a good place to settle its next city and the best spot is next to your city, it is logical for the AI to do it. I'm not sure if there is a higher AI-strategy of placing cities on the map like placing stones on a GO-board. AI looks for Food and new Luxuries and other resources. You can evaluate the AI-Logic by selecting one of your own settlers and looking at the suggested locations to found new cities. AI should get similar suggestions from the game system.

    You can counter AI by guarding the area with a military unit and capture the settler on approach which also gives you a free worker. After a few turns you can make peace. There seems to be no longtime negative diplo modifiers since a settler seems to count as unit and not as a city.
     
  4. Convict

    Convict Chieftain

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    I don't think the AI even looks for a good spot to settle- it is more like they just need to settle as close to you as possible.

    I play ocean maps and Polynesia is dreadful for this. You can be continents away and they will show up before you a chance to get many units and settle in a spot close by. And I'm not sure if this is confirmation bias, but it seems that they will do it to the human player and ignore other AI players.
     
  5. joncnunn

    joncnunn Senior Java Wizard Moderator

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    Areas near capitals tend to be more valuable, which makes them high priority targets by the formula. Especially by AI civs with coastal bias.

    The main way to decrease this happening is to defer embassies so the AI doesn't send drop everything to send a scout to fill the hole in its map between what it's explored and your capital.

    The other is to take advantage of it by having a mobile unit patrolling your edges so it can enslave the AIs settler into a worker.
     
    Lone Stranger likes this.
  6. historix69

    historix69 Chieftain

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    It might be possible that Polynesia is settling close to other players to allow Trade Routes (both directions) which are otherwise often impossible in early game due to impassable Ocean tiles.
     
  7. ShakaKhan

    ShakaKhan Chieftain

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    This is good. Elaborating on this point, I'd suggest not removing barb encampments proximal to where you want to settle. Then, rather than declaring war on someone to steal his settler (which may have the side effect of allowing a swarm of units you didn't see to pillage your terrain) you can send out your own settler when you're good and ready accompanied by a small efficient military group (perhaps 2 ranged and a melee unit) to remove the barb camp, get a small chunk of change, and get a free worker for your new city.
     
  8. Convict

    Convict Chieftain

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    However, they don't always settle close to your capital- if you have a second or even third city out, they will settle close to that in some worthless country.

    And though I have seen the theory about not accepting embassies quite often, I don't buy it. More times than not the AI knows where you are via scouts, and even if you don't have their embassy they will still settle nearby.
     
  9. Eagle Pursuit

    Eagle Pursuit Scir-Gerefa

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    I believe it's a strategy programmed into the AI. They do it to each other too. It helps to stir the pot early in the game and guarantees a rivalry.
     
  10. themathmajician

    themathmajician Chieftain

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    About the natural wonders, it does seem as is NWs spawn close to CSs. Often I've had to steal King's Solomon's Mines or something from a CS with a Citadel.
     
  11. vesp3r1987

    vesp3r1987 Chieftain

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    Thats what i usually do. However i do notice that AI (warmonger or not) will often just place a city next to your borders even if its a desert and that city will starve. Then when i want to take that city by trade they ask for literally everything you have as resources.
    What i do next is to place an army at that border so he doesnt decide to use that city as entry point to my empire
     
  12. ShakaKhan

    ShakaKhan Chieftain

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    Another trick is to keep in mind is that cities cannot be founded within 4 tiles of another city (including CS's) or adjacent to any tile owned by another player (or CS). I've had quite a few instances, often on coastal areas and near CS-mapspams where buying a 3rd ring tile or two creates a situation in which the rules of settling prohibit the AI from settling in any of the available tiles. Further, while you do suffer diplomatic penalties for purchasing land near their preexisting tiles, they don't get mad if you purchase tiles in areas that they plan to incorporate into their territory (unless, of course, these tiles are within 2 tiles of their terrain, but then they wouldn't consider the area for settling to begin with.)
     
  13. Aristos

    Aristos Lightseeker

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    ... and a third possibility, which is the one I prefer, is to maneuver 3-4 units to perma-block the offending settler from passing into "your" selected area of expansion. 3 to 4 units can do marvels when it comes to blocking settlers, more so in rough terrain.
     
  14. Redaxe

    Redaxe Chieftain

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    It definitely does this. I'm in the habit of watching the map replay after I finish each game just to see what the AIs are doing. There is always one naive fool of an AI that decides to forward settle and plop a city right next to Poland, Huns, Zulu etc...

    Nonetheless I don't need to say how it ends up.
     
  15. historix69

    historix69 Chieftain

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    You probably see only the successful settlers in the replay ... those settlers which end in a barbcamp or as workers for other civs are not shown ... so there might be more "fools"
     
  16. beetle

    beetle Chieftain

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    Early hammers are so tight, those 3/4 units could have been two settlers, so that would have taken care of the problem as well. But maybe those 3/4 units are ones you have anyway (two scouts, warrior, archer)?
     
  17. Aristos

    Aristos Lightseeker

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    Well, it's obviously situational. If you see your neighbor will be trouble ahead (aggressive and/or expansionist), you will build some early units anyways just in case, and to train them against barbs (those warriors can earn nice promotions early that impact their future). So you will have the units at hand anyways, and when the turf is tight and your neighbor greedy, but you want to preserve "peace" and avoid early negative diplo mods, blocking the settlers is a very nice way to achieve all that.
     
  18. GoStu

    GoStu Chieftain

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    To secure the high-value city location for itself, and to deny you the same. Some AIs have pretty low standards for a city location and will plop down a city somewhere the smart player declines to.

    Some AIs also don't care what you think (high boldness) and will settle that mediocre location regardless of your cities. They undervalue the danger of pissing off a player too (and overestimate their own strength, which may be spread across the whole map).

    This all adds up to cities in your face.
     
  19. Socratatus

    Socratatus Chieftain

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    I have not read every post, but I often try to build my cities on chokepoints or blocked areas where the AI can`t easily plonk a city in. That said, he has sometimes plonked a city in some of the tiniest spots he could possibly squeeze a city into, even to the point that i`ve declared war, because no way can anyone be doing that peacefully.

    Ok, so I know it`s the AI being dumb (I doubt it really wants to trigger war), but in real life if anyone settles like that it would trigger war instantly.

    Wish the Devs would make the AI a little smarter in when it decides to do that.
     
  20. GoStu

    GoStu Chieftain

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    Truth. The AI certainly gets pissed if you try it on them. I think the AI would also need a better estimation of its combat capabilities in that area - the AI trends toward blissfully unaware that most players are capable of tearing its forces apart, ESPECIALLY when its troops are spread across the world and yours are all right there.

    Maybe Civ 6 needs better reply options when telling the AI that you're pissed, e.g.:

    AI: *converts your city*

    Player Dialogue A: "Hey, stop that. Respect my religious freedom!" <-- same as current

    Player Dialogue B: "Stop the missionaries or I will paint this world red with their blood!" <--- adds a modifier based on military strength versus theirs, but the AI further defying you initiates triggers a new dialogue letter where you must either back up the threat (declaring war) or let them call your bluff (greatly reducing the effect of further threats). War declared this way incurs less initial warmonger hate for original DOW, same penalties for city captures thereafter. Declaring this also paints you slightly as a warmonger with the threatened by civ.

    I would like more freedom to use my military and rattle my saber diplomatically. Being able to clarify between "Stop, that's annoying me!" and "If you don't stop that, this means war!" would improve AI interaction greatly.
     

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