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[GS] Why I don’t build Farms [Are Farms and Food too Local?]

Discussion in 'Civ6 - General Discussions' started by acluewithout, Feb 13, 2020.

  1. Sostratus

    Sostratus Deity

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    I meant another 2 pops worth, although I forgot about the +1 to both, so it's more 2-3ish pops worth. but still, Campus is just miles ahead of every other district in terms of what it's giving you.
     
  2. Trigan Emperor

    Trigan Emperor Prince

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    The way the game is set up, with Districts and Wonders taking up tiles, makes each city and its environs like a metropolitan area. The whole world ends up like one big city. If it mirrored reality, most of the tiles in the games would be farms.

     
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  3. kaspergm

    kaspergm Deity

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    Definitely too many cities way too close in this game. I'm very much looking forward to see what comes out of Humankinds' region approach.

    PS: Also those stupid ski resorts all over the map look so ugly.
     
  4. qadams

    qadams Bohemian

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    Yes, me too.
    It's just a plain ugly map, period. That's one of my biggest complaints about Civ 6, the cartoony approach, the board game map. Especially disappointing after the beauty of Civ 5's maps, with all those glorious farms. Sigh...
     
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  5. player1 fanatic

    player1 fanatic Fanatic

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    Generally, in early game:
    +1 food = +1 production = +2gold

    Sounds good...

    But the moment you get to housing limits, food value is at least halved or worth even 4 time less.
    So that cool looking +4food/+1prod tile is now more like 3yelds tile. Would rather use that +5 prod tile instead. They only stay valuable for feeding the current population, while for anything extra they become wasteful tile to work on.

    Also, due the way how happiness works in the game, you want to maximize how much each citizen can produce.
    So you want to avoid working on +2/+3 yield tiles since those will do more damage, in the long run, draining happiness while not giving enough back.

    That means the moment you get the best tiles around the city, you do not want to grow more if you can expand in other ways (settling on conquest). In that regard, high food tiles, like +5 or +6, are more like +2 or +3 yield tiles (due to housing penalty) and thus something you want to actively avoid using if there are other good tiles to work. And if you do work on all good other tiles, you do not want to invest to get these high food yield tiles, if there are other ways to grow an empire, or there is no critical district limit you really need to reach.
     
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2020
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  6. steveg700

    steveg700 Deity

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    Well, it has to do with the abstraction of "building" a settler to lay clam to a group of tiles. Makes sense for sending colony ships, be they of the Mayflower or MOO2 variety, but as abstractions go, it's not generally representative of how a civilization claims land.

    You wind up stuck with a game focused on localized generation because how the world started and the formula doesn't change from local to regional to global. Trade routes should be the means of distribution, but nothing is being distributed, just goodies from thin air. You can get from a trade route to a city that is itself starving.
     
  7. acluewithout

    acluewithout Deity

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    What's Local, what's Global and what's in between?

    I've edited the Thread Title to make the discussion about Local v Global a bit clearer - I hope that's okay with everyone.

    Anyway. Civ 6’s tendency towards “local” mechanics is a bit surprising given the game otherwise works so hard to encourage wide play. You'd think the game would be more about what happens at the level of your Empire (or at least how your Cities work together) rather than constantly emphasising what happens at a City by City level.

    To sort of tease out this point, let me try to group things into "local" mechanics, "global" (or regional) mechanics, and mechanics that are more in between.
    • Local
      • Food (and Housing and Farms). See OP. Farms generate Food locally, and so I’m saying Farms are mostly local. But they are quasi global because you can use Farms in one City to boost Farms / Food in another City via Adjacencies and or Tile Flipping. There are actually very few Tile Improvements that stack life Farms, which is kinda cool really.

      • Population. Very local. Population is mostly generated based on local factors (food from internal trade routes adds a bit of quasi-global). Population works tiles in that City or Specialists in that City. Population can generate Culture, Science and Gold which are Global yields, but this is pretty marginal except for Culture, Science or Gold from Pingala / Reyna. Religion can also generate Global Yeilds (Gold) based on Pop, but again pretty marginal. Faith is better, and you can get huge faith from Pop via either Earth Goddess or Theocracy.

      • Governors. Most effects are localised you one City, although some exceptions; eg Liang boat builders and builders can then move to other Cities; Magnus let’s stack regional production bonuses.

      • Appeal. Hard to classify, because really Appeal does so little. But except for some edge cases, Appeal seems mostly local.

      • City Defence. Based mostly on garrisoned unit, Walls and Districts, so I’m saying this is Local.

      • Projects. I’m calling these Local because you run them on a per City basis and performance relies on production on City running the project. However, running them can be quasi-global because potentially builders can spend charges to complete projects (and the builders can obviously be built in other Cities). Yields are global (gold or faith, great people, religious pressure, loyalty).

      • Wonders. Built locally, except for China that can use Builders Charges to complete. Might give some adjacencies bonuses to nearby cities; and some Wonders have regional or empire wide effects. You might also use mechanics that stack or concentrate production into a single City to get a Wonder built quickly, which makes Wonders more of a Global / Regional mechanic, however I find it's better to chop in Wonders with Magnus which makes them feel very local - i.e. I never feel like my empire is responsible for building the Pyramids, just one very productive and chop happy set of citizens in one particular city.

      • Districts. Hard to place these, but I think Districts basically Local because you build them locally, capacity is determined on local pop, adjacencies mostly determined by local terrain, and usually only have effects in the City where you build them and any Specialists are clearly local. Where they stray into global is: many Districts produce global yields; you can late game purchase Districts with global yields ( Gold or Faith) via Governors; and District Adjacencies can apply to other nearby Cities.

      • Buildings. Built locally and most effects are local. Can be bought with global yields (gold and faith) and some Buildings have regional or global effects.

      • Chopping. I’m putting this down as “very local”. You chop locally and yields (generally Food and Production) are local. Indeed, I wonder if one reason the game feels so focused on local is because chopping is local and is also so powerful.
    • Quasi-Global / Regional
    • Production. Production is generated locally and basically can only be spent locally via each City’s production queue. But Production is quasi-global because: you can use production to run projects, and projects generally generate global yields; production can build units (particularly builders and settlers) that can move and benefit other cities or your empire generally.

    • Industrial Zones and Gov Plaza. Districts are generally local, but these Districts are more quasi-global because their adjacencies tend to be stacked across multiple cities and their buildings tend more towards regional and or global effects.

    • Amenities, Happiness and Loyalty. Happiness is a hard one to place. I think it’s on the local side for “quasi-global”. Amenities and Happiness are applied locally and have local effects. You initially generate Amenities locally, but it’s a bit weird because some Amenities get allocated globally (but to each City individually), and some are generated via Policies (which is essentially local). But the key point for Happiness is that there isn’t a Global Happiness, and on that basis I think Happiness and Amenities are more local than global. Loyalty is even more mixed because it mostly depends on local factors but has a regional effect. So, yeah, I’m saying these things are all quasi global.

    • Colonial Cities. Colonial Cities benefit from a bunch of Policies (and a handful of Civ abilities) that benefit those Cities exclusively. Colonial Cities themselves, like all Cities, basically generate yields and build things locally, but I think the fact you can sort of buff all Colonial Cities through specific policies and powers makes them quasi-global.

    • Trade Routes. I’ve discussed these earlier in the thread. But I feel these are generally on the global side. Trade route capacity is mostly per City, but you can then use that capacity to run trade routes anywhere. Internal routes then let you focus production and growth into one city, and international routes generate global yields. You’re also creating roads that join up cities.
    • Global / Regional
    • Gold and Faith. Earned locally and globally; accumulated globally; but can mostly only be spent locally (except maybe Great People).

    • Strategic Resources. Earned locally and (via Trade, Suze) maybe globally; acclimated globally; spent locally (units) and globally (power); global effects (climate).

    • Power. Global given it’s all about Regional effects and Resources are global.

    • Science, Culture, Diplo Favour. Earned locally or through trade routes and policies. Accumulated and spent globally.

    • Technology and Civics. Global given they effect you’re whole empire.

    • Government and Policies. Usually Global Effects.

    • Era Score and Dedications. Effects are Global.

    • Great People. GP Points are accumulated globally and purchased globally. You can also purchase them using Global yields (Gold and Faith). The effects range from Local to Global to stuff in between. I'm putting these guys in the Global bucket.

    Is Civ 6 more Local than Global? And either way, so what?


    I’m sure people can quibble with the above list - it’s not exhaustive and there are lots of edge cases. But overall, I think very little in the game is really Global except Governments and Policies and Culture and Tech, although it depends a bit on where you draw the lines. Most things actually have a bit of a mix of Local and Global, although mechanics tend to skew towards local.

    Population and Growth (Food and Farms), however, seem strongly Local, and actually stand out a bit given most key mechanics are more of a mix of Local and Global or are purely Global. I wonder if Pop and Growth being so Local focused isn't part of the reason why people feel like Population doesn’t matter much (particularly when that's combined with chopping being generally stronger than yields particularly as the game goes on).

    Most things are a bit local and a bit global, but overall tend to skew local.

    Anyway. A few other random thoughts.
    • Trade Routes and Adjacency (Districts and Farms) are the main way Cities really connect and you can start feeling like you have an empire rather than a collection of city states. But it’s quite weak connections. District Adjacencies between Cities aren’t a big thing except for the Gov Plaza and IZs (and IZ clusters come pretty late), although different story for Japan and Germany. Trade Routes are better - personally, I find it really satisfying having a few core cities with clustered IZs, lots of coastal cities or whatever generating trade routes, and then running the routes from those core cities. But ultimately it doesn’t create that much connection between your Cities, because internal trade route yields don’t have that much to do with what those outer cities do and you’ll end up favouring international routes anyway.
    • Regional effects are another way to connect Cities, but it seems to me the game is mostly over by the time they come online so they’re pretty irrelevant. If the game lasted longer they might be more important, although they’re also not very strong effects anyway.

    • Game speed is probably also a big factor with all this stuff too. If the game lasted longer, yields would be more valuable than chopping, so Population would be more valuable as would mechanics that let you stack or concentrate production etc. into one City.
    Mostly agree. But I think it's also a bit of a visual issue too - the Cities and Districts in Civ 6 just don't "sprawl" enough. It's really obvious they don't when you compare it with the visuals we're seeing for Humankind. If Cities stretched outside of their tiles more (or at least the little huts / houses etc), then I think the map would feel more unified, and Cities would feel a lot more epic. I'm sure that could done without really hurting the visual distinctiveness of the various Districts, so you could still easily see what assets each city is made of.
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2020
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  8. Galvatron

    Galvatron Warlord

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    I gotta say I disagree and I find that incorrect; trade IS MAGIC, yes, but that's realistic, because it's magic IRL.

    The reason why the yields come out 'of nowhere' is because that's how it works in real life. You take things that are worth nothing or at least less in one place, and move them where they have value.

    Imagine you have two cities, and they each have 6 food each. One of them makes lots of salt, and they cure their fish which would only be worth 2 food without the salt, the other one makes preserves. When you run a trade route between the two the city that only had preserves now has access to salt beef, which has more protein, and is able to round out their diet. They get more sustenance, by eating less. And now people who are not fans of working in the salt quarry can go work on the farms, and vice versa, which boosts production and food yields, despite not 'magically creating' more goods.

    And this is before you consider the fact that access to good... goods and varieties of consumables boost... consumption.

    #feedingthemultitude
     
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  9. acluewithout

    acluewithout Deity

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    I thought I had already said in that the "yields from nothing" bit about Trade Routes actually does have some realism to it?

    Yes, I do think real world trade creates additional outputs by "magic" to some degree, and so having Trade Routes do that in the game isn't totally unrealistic at all. They way you describe additional output being created is fine. But it's also just a product of trade allowing for more demand, demand creating incentive for more supply, and supply therefore driving greater productivity (including via economies of scale). So, yeah, yields from nothing is actually fine by me.
     
  10. Galvatron

    Galvatron Warlord

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    Sorry, I must have missed that.
     
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  11. Sostratus

    Sostratus Deity

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    Nothing quite like the ol' Comparative Advantage!
    We don't know why it works, but it works!
     
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  12. Galvatron

    Galvatron Warlord

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    Is that what it's called?

    Wait, we don't? I thought it was just the natural principle of specialisation.
     
  13. Sostratus

    Sostratus Deity

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    I was just being humorous. Yes, the specialization principle is called Comparative Advantage in the economics world. It always works because no matter how productive you are at producing any and all goods, numerically there will still be a trade benefit with someone who has a different distribution of productivity and goods.
    Usually it's presented as Person 1 is good at making X, and person 2 is good at making Y. Since they both want some of both, they can have more X and Y if they trade. The question that usually comes up when people hear this for the first time is what happens if person 1 is better at making both X and Y than person 2- why doesn't person 1 just make everything they want for themselves? But if you just check the math, you will find that indeed, there is a still a benefit to trade.
     
  14. Galvatron

    Galvatron Warlord

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    I finished reading the OP I didn't yesterday because I was falling asleep...

    Largely speaking I agree with your sentiments. I'm also not sure about what the answer is though...

    A couple or more points I'd add:
    1. Food has no district... which is kinda weird, and also means there is no regional building... which would kind of but not really fix your local food problem
    2. I'd argue the same is true to a much more limited extent with production. Mitigated only by the fact that production is much more useful.
    3. What if food wasn't growth, but instead growth was its own thing, and having enough food or not enough effects the growth rate, but didn't set it entirely? Surplus food becomes production, wealth is transferred elsewhere or something.
    4. I feel the same way about improvements in general. They don't affect trade routes at all?!
    5. Could this be attached to the fact that farms kinda suck?

    Also I had an idea about the game that war more aimed at decluttering the late game and making newer cities useful: toy know how you form corps it of units? What if toy could do the same with cities? Around the middle of the game you get the tech to form nation states which can pool their production and form corps and armies or other works... and with food you could share it between the cities.
     
  15. cvb

    cvb Prince

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    You surprise my offline written post ... but I think, the mines/farms imbalance should be solved locally, independent from new optional food transport, anyway.
    Actually civ1 - civ4 were quite consistent in this aspect: mostly flatlands +1food // hills +1 prod, ie. flatlands & hills equal valuable.
    Mined hills were ALWAYS in deficit of food.

    There is an article which inspired me: Limiting mines to actual resources would benefit the game in many ways - here's why

    FearSunn has in his STEAM Workshop a mod (less food from mines & quarries for ALL players): Mines No Food which reverts to civ5, no food from mines.


    I want give incentive to build more farms in civ6 by reducing food by one from mines & quarries (compensate copper & stone with 1faith in order to be not just harvestables) as well as from citrus, spices & sugar till celestial navigation.
    But only for the human player, who may play on a lower difficulty while not disturbing the AI. Think of it as beginning with a smaller snowball, which gains slower weight - a longer way till endgame boredom.

    .
     
  16. The googles do nothing

    The googles do nothing Prince

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    This is the fulcrum of the issue. I while back I got bored with and stopped using the Magnus and chopping strategy and the game changes a lot.

    The unintentional side effect of this would be more chopping because it would slow down new city growth. That's actually realistic as I doubt people establishing a new city would care much about preserving the environment when they are struggling to survive.
     
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  17. acluewithout

    acluewithout Deity

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    I don't think Farms suck. They're really good for generating growth and Population, particularly once you start using adjacencies. The problem is that this Growth is generally not valuable outside of a high production City and or City with Pingala.

    Really, what the game needs is for Population to be more valuable particularly versus chopping (but not so valuable that you just end up with every city with max Pop) and, ideally, Food being a quasi-global or shared resource the way production is.


    Mostly agree. Reducing Food from Mines is not going to fix anything, and might actually make chopping even more valuable.

    Although, I do think Mines need a nerf compared to other improvements. But personally I’d rather see that nerf being something around making the negative appeal they generate more meaningful.
     
  18. lotrmith

    lotrmith King

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    The idea is that a savvy player adjusts each city according to its needs. For example, a 5 food tile lets you work more pure production tiles (mines/mills) or even co-production tiles like special gold/faith/culture/science improvements or wonders.
     
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  19. cvb

    cvb Prince

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    If somebody feels inclined to interpret the situation this way and has fun to live that out ... why not?
    My starting point was less severe though, just the necessity to build a couple of farms.
    And:
    All other things being equal. But as said already, slowing down a bit the human player is a desired side effect - nearer towards the range AIplayers are able to meet a victory condition. I just started with local items, probably followed by units ...

    In general I see me leaving the features/resources and improving them, it feels "right" for me. In most cases I'd chop only if I need that tile for some district or wonder. Sometimes I would also chop eg. to speed up an important wonder, especially if I know somebody else is also building it (ie. being in dire emergency :D).
    So I intent to clearly reduce the value from chopping proportionately, have chopping yields capped and/or maybe even use a "house rule" to limit the sheer number of chops ...
    Details are open until fine tuning of other global items like (increasing city maintenance, decreasing free amenities ...) - depending on number of cities, only for the human player.

    Also even Firaxis may change "chopping" again.

    .
     
  20. King of Prussia

    King of Prussia Warlord

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    Enjoyed reading the above posts. I will admit that i have cut down(heh) on my chopping since the introduction of magnus. I dont move him around as much to make use of it, and i chop less than i did before in general. The changes to improvements helped, but i also feel a bit guilty exploiting it to such a degree that it removes the challenge.

    Remarking on the pic above of the persons large empire, we went from one extreme to other with civ v to civ vi. We went from largely nothing outside of farms, trading posts and mines outside of cities to nearly everything being moved out. I think in Civ 7, if they moved more stuff(not all) back into the city, including buildings, district(s) and wonders, that it would be a better balance. Right now, you want as much room as possible for your cities to build districts, wonders, and a few key improvements. This issue is one reason why i dont like coastal cities with a little land. Even if they make more things to stick out in the water, it doesn't solve the clutter issue on land. I barely have farms in the late game. I mainly try to avoid removing mines or other production sources because you need lots of hammers in the late game. Especially when the production to tech rate is still off imo.(tech too fast compared to what it takes to build stuff) Late game empires start to turn into Judge Dredd style maps.
     

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