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Old 07-11-2019, 16:12   #1
Beorn
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Default * Spoiler * Old Camel * Spoiler *

Since it's our second hump at this old beast.



Khmer is good and well-rounded
Dutch are taken by Matrix again
Sumer is good all-around
Aztec have a garbage UU but better UB than Sumer
Boudica is nice but Celts are garbage
Pericles again, tempting
Justinian has 12-strength knights

Very tough choice, all pretty good civs and traits and none stand out to my fancy. Last game's decision algorithm would yield Sumer or Aztec first, so heads or tails: tails. Aztecs.

Move the scout, find Wheat and coast.



Wisdom dictates warrior first. I don't have agriculture so worker first is lackluster anyways. Greed demands silver first - need both mining and bronze for chops. Solid techs to get anyways.



The Irréductible Village Gaulois thus sends Astérix (again) to scout for more viable land, as it seems like a pseudo-OCC situation on a peninsula. We'll see.
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Last edited by Beorn; 07-11-2019 at 16:15.
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Old 13-11-2019, 22:38   #2
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T10, 3600 BC



I'll try to keep a 10-turn report pace. Ynnek and I have 2 pop, 1 guy has 2 warriors.



The Village Gaulois is stuck up North in such a way that its culture will reach both ice sheet and desert:



Which, if I may vent a little:



Though to be fair, the South is looking better.

We have pretty little to look forward to in the way of commerce-rich rivers and resources. Tons of food in the capital, nothing outside of it. In hindsight I'd have settled 1SE on the coast for access to crabs and an easier time sharing cows.

So, planning. We have forests. Tons of forests. 1 silver and 1 cow are under forests. Enough forests to justify 2 workers chopping right away to kick-start workers and settlers. Worker #1 will come out right on cue for BW to allow him chopping ; starting warrior to 2-pop went better than expected in that regard.



So the opening will be warrior-worker-worker-settler-(settler?). Silver should allow for a painless REX to 3-4 ultra early cities.

Marble + I want WANT WANT to exploit my UB on slaves. Rushing the oracle for CoL (not even going to pretend an attempt at a Philo or CS slingshot) seems like a no-brainer. Which brings us to the next, bigger, looming problem: economy.

Sure there's a good patch of grass down there ... on my frontline ... that I could fill up with cottages ... easily available for pillaging ... and I might just do that. There's also a few nice river grasslands in the capital. It'll be a hell of a bureaucracy metropolis.

But really, my most efficient way of building up $ this game seems to be the Wonderbread economy. Wonders and bread.
  • Grow cities to size 4 with granary + sacrificial altar
  • Put 4 into a 35 axeman (or anything to max overflow)
  • 2-pop whip it down, gaining an axe and 29
  • Dump the 29x2 into a marble wonder (+100% for marble)
  • Use the short 5 turns of whip recovery to grow back to a happy 4-pop in a pinch
  • Reap 58 fail gold when the wonder completes
  • Repeat everywhere in the empire

That's the strategy, folks, and it means that we'll be valuing food above all: it gives more and double the gold you'd expect from building wealth. I saw it on CFC, never tried it myself. HoF bigwigs seem to thrive on it. I have no clue how to best proceed with it so let's just hope it doesn't blow up in my face. I don't intend to practice it or make a test run either: we'll do it live.
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Last edited by Beorn; 14-11-2019 at 04:46.
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Old 14-11-2019, 17:54   #3
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T11, first neighbor across the jungle: ynnek

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Old 19-11-2019, 13:59   #4
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T20, 3200 BC



We are on a brisk pace of nearly 2 turns/day (and would attain it if PP played his double turns when he has the opportunity - no matter). Lots of movement on the score graph on turn 20. Many new growths to size 2, as well as techs. Judging from #1 soldiers and +23 score jump, I might be the first one to bronze.



Communication with ynnek is on the slow side, as is tradition. It is known.

The land takes shape and we learn there's no resources to share at all: the only one with multiple copies is spices, which we'll both have access to. We seem to be near other landmasses on his end.



One single copper. Bummer. I'd rather have settled OrangeDot 1N to grab sheep first ring. However, we have no backyard => we need to forward settle => we need to defend it => copper first. It'll be a solid military city too, with everything but hill.



Ynnek's lands are forest-rich but resource-poor. We can't gain visibility into his capital (nor can he ours), nor see behind it to confirm or deny whether he has a viable backyard. Otherwise, having to wait until iron + calendar to develop properly will understandably put him on edge.



I really hope he has a lush little piece of grass behind him. It'd be better having an ally than not. At the same time, I've got nowhere to go but forward towards his face and there's both copper and elephants to take advantage of. Heavy sigh.
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Old 25-11-2019, 19:20   #5
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T30, 2800 BC



Silver is connected which catapults me to #2 in GNP, from dead last. Someone else has an improved mining lux + more pop.

Population is low. All part of the plan.

Someone jumped ahead to 23000 soldiers. Could be a combination of barracks, pop, archery, AH, bronze ... a whole bunch of warriors would also help. At any rate, relative strength with ynnek reveal it's not him. It suggests he has 1 or maybe 2 warriors, his warr #1 all the way SE on a deep dive through the jungles.



There's still wheat to improve for 4F1H and cows for 4F2H, but the current unimproved forest cow (!) gives me a cozy 3F1H for no effort whatsoever. So until I have 4F tiles to work and grow on, I'll keep chopping settlers.





Score isn't as bad as I thought it might be. Everyone has resumed growth (see demos) while our 2-pop capital churns out workers+settlers, chop after chop.



The uncovered territory between ynnek and I is somewhat in our favor - mostly because of jungles on his end. Good land on both sides anyways, with a few rivers and good potential grass+rivers. He assures me his backyard, like ours, is only good for a weak city.

Let's put up this dotmap for the sake of argument:



Brown dot can tileshare with the capital, work specialists. Teal dot ASAP for cottages, pink dot can wait a bit since it only blooms with winery and plantations. Backyard purple dot when we can build a lighthouse and Moai.

Orange dot gets settled first to grab copper - doing less would be irresponsible. Settler #1 gets chopped in 3 turns by worker #2 while worker #1 will already be on-site with a pre-chop and a pre-road. We know from demographics that ynnek has no built up military to snipe it out from under me. Which brings us to sharing.

The white dots have practical food sharing opportunities with the Khmer capital, good access to grassland cottages, rivers, tons of chops, gold and stone. A solid share of the land. Whether it's a fair share, well, time will tell. There's 1 or 2 more spots to the SE with bananas and rice to be grabbed. Perhaps more.

When I'm sure I won the race to copper city, I'll be in a position of strength to negociate borders with ynnek - something along the lines of setting a DMZ on the gold-stone column and going no further west myself, in the interest of a peaceful long-term cohabitation.

Meanwhile Astérix will forego further exploration in the interest of fog-busting a clear path through to the orange dot. We can discover the SE jungles in good time.
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Last edited by Beorn; 25-11-2019 at 19:26.
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Old 29-11-2019, 20:27   #6
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T40, 2400BC



Little improvement in demographics but we're getting there. Being first to settle has its perks. Let's give it time to yield benefits.

On the score graph, notice the first whipping from Byzantine slavers on T36 and Petitbonvm being founded on T37. The rest of the increases are mostly techs, some pop increases. Last place in population (6000) is below me and I used to be sole last with 6000, meaning it's the whip's fault, meaning Stapel seems to be making workers/settlers and whipping them out.



With early bronze, my soldiers score was slightly higher than ynnek, which I thought meant he had 1 warrior and fewer techs - then his score jumped (with bronze). That spooked me to the possibility of him having built up a warrior army to bully me out of there. To be safe, Ordralfabétix the warrior was chopped on the frontline.

Then we re-equalized once I got Wheel, which seems promising: I bet we now both have mining-bronze-wheel + 1 scout 2 warriors. Assuming this is right, I get to make axemen in time to deter anything cheeky. Ordralfabétix goes fogbusting, we resume building up.



On the diplomatic front, PP tells me Killer lost his bet while trying to invade his capital with 1 healthy warrior, 1 wounded. This follows after a rather irregular double-move from PP to open hostilities. Herr Killer is sure to be pissed, about both events, although to be fair his follow-up invasion against a fortified aggressive warrior at possibly +60% - thus 5% odds or worse - was greatly misguided. Could even be +85% (1% success) if on hill.

Closer to home, ynnek got my proposal for a peaceful neighborhood. He says he doesn't have copper (said nothing about horses) and he also would rather team up than let guns decide. The broad strokes of what I sent are a 5:6 split of cities on the main lands, he gets first dibs on settling whatever landmass lies to the SW and we re-negociate later for the SE. He kept exploring it while I was escorting my worker - settler convoy so he knows more than I do.



Whatever happens with a treaty, I'll keep teching for Oracle => CoL. Maybe I can sweeten the deal for him by sharing the religion.
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Old 30-11-2019, 04:47   #7
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Long term peace with ynnek has been agreed upon. Peace brings me little in the obvious tit-for-tat sense, especially now that metal is secure, but I'd much rather we both had the time and space to focus on development before facing off against other threats. I don't believe in zero-sum games: we both gain by towering above the average opponent together.
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Old 01-12-2019, 21:05   #8
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New neighbor from the south: Bastiaan Stapel. We'll conduct diplo in French for him to practice a bit. Peace until 1AD, 10 turns warning afterwards.

This opens up a whole Pandora's box of possibilities for how the world is set up. Looking forward to figuring out where he is and what the continent looks like beyond the snake pass to our SE.
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Old 03-12-2019, 14:26   #9
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T50, 2000BC



The choice to rely on chops rather than growth for early development is starting to flourish, with 4 high yield tiles improved in the capital and city #3 2 turns away.



Matrix is flying away in score, similar to last game, so I'm betting he has a high growth capital with 2 metal luxuries for ridiculous commerce. He just settled on T45 (Brunch 43, ynnek 49, me 37) so his points aren't due too much to pop but rather mainly to teching. Creative financial also helps and I'll bet he raced for writing and cheap libs. As he should.



Stapel was the first to whip (for 2 pop even) and he may have settled around T42. Not 100% sure. ynnek also 2-pop whipped a settler and put it in my face - surely hoping he'd bust my culture. Both are my closest neighbors and you can see them featured here:



Judging from Stapel's 1 espionage against me, he probably has met 3-4 opponents. That's promising for our scout Astérix, who has already discovered a bomb of a canal city:





So, in the short term, we'll need granaries and workers for growth and cottages. Soon-ish, we'll have to fight ynnek's creative culture in Petitbonvm with religion and a cheeky 3-chop Oracle.
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Old Today, 15:52   #10
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T60, 1600 BC



Population is low but crop yield is tied for #1. We are now officially in the race. 3 towns, 2 granaries (3rd building), 3 workers (4th queued).



The economy is shaky at best so we'll leave it at that for now and wait for a few key techs before expanding.



That, and Babaorum needs to grow into cottages. Wonderbread only works with wonders to build and we've not even reached the first.



Power is waning slowly as I've been whipping granaries. Petitbonum is almost done with its barracks, then axemen ad infinitum.



Matrix keeps leaping up in score. I think his cultural borders have something to do with it: part of the score is territory so if he settled his 2nd big fat cross away from his first, that's a lot of land to convert into score. That and high pop, high commerce, high tech rate. But only a semi-late 2nd town.

The 3 that seriously use the whip are my neighbors and I, with Brunch the greek just starting to contribute to the slavery party.



The area SE towards Stapel is rich and tempting. One day, hopefully, a GE will build me Versailles there. But that's just a distant fantasy.
Right now: Poly->Priest->Writing for Oracle->CoL, whip Sac Altars, overflow into ToA, profit.

Diplomatically, Stapel is still a chipper fella (and safely far away) while ynnek is giving me pause. Espionage suggests he's met other neighbors (might have been him adjusting my slider down, but somehow I doubt that). We agreed to share foreign contact info ; he hasn't. Then there's the forward settlement on Petitbonum, stealing clams and trying to grab copper passive-aggressively. I'll stand my ground with culture for now, but it's testing. When I get my cellphone repaired, I'll try and nudge him towards being a better neighbor.
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