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Why is Mutual Protection Pact easier than Military Alliance?


May 7, 2023
I was playing this game on emperor difficulty as the Greeks on Pangea map. Having the largest empire but not by much, with some civs having a stronger military according to the advisor (but not really when accounting for modernity of units). During the whole game I made sure to have an impeccable reputation in trade, war and ROP. While building up my cavalry some other civs had some wars, but made peace. When I was ready to go to war it was impossible to get any civ (all democracies) to join me against any other civ, even though I had techs that they valued at thousands of gold and hundreds of gold per turn. But, with nationalism, all of them would accept a mutual protection pact for free. So I ended up making MPP with everybody except the guy I wanted to invade and then tell him to remove his troops from my territory and he declared war.

Question: Is this a known game mechanic/exploit? Is this how you're supposed to make military alliances?

You need to declare war first. When you are at war with the target already, most nations will easily join you in a military alliance. It may cost a few gtp or sometimes more than just a few. But if you start with weakers and therefore cheaper nations first, the price for a military alliance will drop as the overall strength ratio will make the war much more feasible. This may also explain why AI is uneager to join into war against a nation not at war already. So that is a bit of a bug, but easily to avoid. Just declare war first.
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