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Completed Let's Build Civilisation 3

Discussion in 'Codex Playground' started by IncendiaryDevice, Jun 19, 2018.

  1. IncendiaryDevice Arcane

    IncendiaryDevice
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    I've played a lot of building games over the years, not all of them and not specializing in them, just a lot over many years, and one of my favourites is still Civilisation 3.

    Civilisation 3 can also be played as a war game as per 4x empire building tradition, but I never really use the game for that purpose. I find the combat awkward and boring generally and in most of it's facets. However, I don't mind, and even quite like, some minor action to help spice things up.

    In order to most effectively convert the game away from combat and into building, I grew to favour the Archipelago maps. Here is my usual preferred world map design, and the one used for this game:

    [​IMG]

    The seed you see isn't the correct seed for the game that follows. I had no idea I was going to make a LP out of this game so never saved my starting parameters and was just bouncing through many starting locations before deciding which to go with. I believe the above seed is for a Greek game. But this does otherwise accurately show the exact starting conditions.

    World Size: Huge - this gives me the most likely chance to start on an island relatively well protected by sea and ocean water.

    Archipelago (80% water) - helps compound the chance to start on an island well protected by sea and ocean water.

    These above two are the unchangeables in my relaxation building games. The changeables are:

    Normal climate, temperate temperature and an age of 4 Billion years - the middle settings here are simply to try and maximise the chance of starting next to a river on grassland with either a Wheat or Cow nearby. If I was going for a different victory condition then I might choose rockier terrain or more hostile cold/hot terrain, but for building a spaceship then all-middle is ideal.

    No Barbarians - I used to always have Barbarians set to Raging, because that's the most entertaining, however, this is counter-intuitive to a relaxing building game, plus I got bored of always having it on.

    I have no record of the next screen, where you pick your nation and other specifics, but I went for:

    England - they are just my favourite civ for Archipelago maps. They have the Seafaring trait, which provides half-price Harbours and a +1 bonus to boat movement & they also have the Commercial trait, which reduces Corruption, gives half-price Marketplaces and provides some minor additional gold. There might be more efficient min/max nations to play, but this is the most relaxed and intuitive combination for going for a building game space race on an Archielago map.

    11 Rivals, all random - helps compound the chance to start on you're own island. 16 is the usual max for a huge map, but I've found that you have to undergo an awful lot of reloads to start on your own island and this doesn't really reduce until you get down to 11. Going too far below 16 and the game loses that unique sense of competition and variety.

    Regency difficulty - because this is normal difficulty. No-one gets any cheat bonuses. As it's a building game it doesn't really matter about AI competitiveness, they are only there to prevent you being too complacent, they are not there to defeat you, to provide a sense of realism and land-grab competition and the like. A building-game is about competing with yourself for personal efficiency within personal rules.

    All other settings are on normal or default as well.


    550BC

    We join our civ at the point at which I decided to make a proper go of the map, the map having proven to be one that suits the required objectives:

    [​IMG]

    I started next to a river with one cow for food bonuses, the island is my own, the neighbours are remote but accessible. The drawback is that the island's decent grassland is not very numerous and, essentially, it's a very small island. But that will be fine, it just means I will have slower technology progress than I would like.

    Nearby is another island which is both uninhabited and covered in luxuries, which is nice. Had I gone for 16 players then this island would probably have had a civ on it, instead, it's me versus the Persians to try and fill it asap:

    [​IMG]

    Those green dudes above me are the Persians. Above them are the red Romans and to the left there (the far-right of the map) are the brown Russians, who will also make a grab for this island if I wait too long.

    [​IMG]

    As you can see, everyone's pretty grumpy at this stage as no-one's made any trade deals yet and shooting your boat through someone's borders tends to piss them off generally. I also haven't bothered with any embassies yet and likely wont build any all game, as reputation is unimportant for this particular game.

    Likewise I'm not worried about securing any of the early Wonders either and am quite happy to let the AIs spend some of their early years on them:

    [​IMG]

    Most Wonders are continent-specific and so have less of a use on small islands than on larger landed maps, but I'm mainly ignoring them out of priority. I simply have more important long-term infrastructure to build atm which takes precedence over an expensive unique building, most which will expire at some point anyway.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    The only really important buildings so far at my capital are the Library and the Granary. The only thing I'm interested in for this game is those science Beakers there, which means I need citizens working squares and buildings which multiply beakers. At this precise moment in time I'm, unusually, building soldiers. Mostly because I haven't built any yet:

    [​IMG]

    You'll notice it uses the term "allowed units" & I am over that limit. All this means is that after the "allowed" limit then I have to start paying for my troops. Allowed just means free. As you can see, the annoying thing is that this game counts workers and settlers as counting towards your total military units, essentially leaving you zero free military units. So if I'm maximising gold, to maximise beakers, then I really don't want to be spending all my money on soldiers.

    And it's working well so far, as I've already left the Ancient Age and have just Started the Medieval Age at 550BC:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The problem is that 11 turns per tech is incredibly slow and must be rectified as quickly as possible. I need more expansion, more growth and to get to Education, all as soon as possible. 126 science was good for the AA, but it's peanuts for the MA & my sliders are already maxed out while also still requiring citizens be converted to non-workers to prevent riots. Not good at all, something must be done:

    [​IMG]

    It's all good though and a quick look at the running-charts shows me where I'm lagging:

    [​IMG]

    Which is nowhere except for Land Area & Approval Rating. Military Service can be ignored, its the stat on there everyone laughs at as being the stupidest.

    What is the point of doing all this without some kind of personal gain? Am I President for no personal benefit? It would seem so at this point in time as my personal palace is somewhat embarrassing for global no.1:

    [​IMG]

    And there goes the first 100 turns of a Civ 3 building game. "100 turns and aaaaaaaaall's weeeeeeeeell."

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2018
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  2. Darth Roxor Prestigious Gentleman Wielder of the Huegpenis

    Darth Roxor
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  3. IncendiaryDevice Arcane

    IncendiaryDevice
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    What have you got against building games?
     
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  4. Darth Roxor Prestigious Gentleman Wielder of the Huegpenis

    Darth Roxor
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  5. IncendiaryDevice Arcane

    IncendiaryDevice
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    Oh, there will be some warring, I've no doubt. I think a good historical builder should have some warring or threat of assault and the AIs in Civ games are prone to invade just for the fuck of it & it's to be expected, hence why I've started to build Swordsmen, Persia is likely barely inches away from learning seafaring. A good builder shouldn't be dictated by the military aspect though, IMO.
     
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  6. IncendiaryDevice Arcane

    IncendiaryDevice
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    10BC

    The Persians did indeed discover Seafaring quite soon after the last post. My initial thought was that they'd immediately start spamming Settlers onto the second island while I was still busy filling out my first island and trying to establish a strong infrastructure. It turns out I was dead wrong, it seems the AI was in urgent need of war and the Persians immediately started landing Warriors right next to York. Luckily, they were no match for my newly built Swordsmen. The AI is a predictable beast and they refuse to end a turn in unsafe waters. An ancient age Galley can only safely travel on coastal waters. So I have this trick where I position a few Galleys of my own along a coast and it will act as a solid wall to AI sea travel. Due to the cost of military units, however, I can't completely prevent them from landing, but what I can do is dictate the general area in which they have a choice to land, once again reducing my military expenses to only those needed to cover a very small area, in this case 6 Galleys and 7 Swordsmen being all I need at this point in time. I'm am now free to continue with my infrastructure of the crucial Universities and more Settlers to hurry up and populate the second island.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Galleys are great defenders but terrible attackers. A Galley should only ever attack another Galley out of sheer desperation & the AI seems to be very aware of this and it's a very rare and very desperate AI who ever bothers trying to force its way through a Galley wall. This, again, it great for your economics as you don't even need to stack them most of the time.

    Island 2 is not progressing very efficiently at all, with virtually no more inhabitants than it had over 500 years ago. A shameful display:

    [​IMG]

    But at least I have the second luxury resource up and running, which is the main thing at this stage of the game. This now means that I have 2 local luxuries, allowing London to get to max size without having to convert most of them into inefficient Entertainers or relatively pointless Taxmen & without having to impact my main sliders too much. Once the Library is constructed even Scientists are a waste compared to what they could produce from actually working a square, and even more so once the university is completed:

    [​IMG]

    209 Beakers per turn is still miserable and really slow going for the Medieval era & it feels like walking through mud getting these crucial infrastructure techs. Luckily Astronomy is the last one and I should be steaming along again very soon indeed. At least, that's the plan.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Astronomy is crucial for two reasons. Firstly it will allow me to build my first crucial Great Wonder: Copernicus' Observatory, which has the effect of adding a University on top of your university, making your non-corrupt capital's beaker production really excel. Secondly, it allows safe travel over sea squares (that shaded sea area next to coastline but that isn't quite ocean). This will vastly improve my speed at finding other civilisations while also allowing me to trade for luxuries with anyone I can get to without having to traverse ocean squares. So, this section of the game is a bit like recoiling a catapult; slow and laborious extreme effort followed by an extremely quick and rapid slingshot forwards.

    And I've managed to discover quite a few new potential trading opportunities since 550BC: The Maya, in light blue, who are just to the right of Rome on the above minimaps and the Indians, in grey, who are sharing Russia's island to the left (or far-right). This is where that extra naval movement point really helps; in getting your luxuries options a wide as possible as soon as possible.

    [​IMG]

    I would like to invade Persia, as I will need to at some point in order to have enough land to generate late-game beaker requirements, I simply can't find the time nor resources to do it atm, so I'm just letting him do what he needs to for now and just soaking up his laughably weak attacks. Another bonus of having the AI declare war on you is that it acts like another luxury: You get war-happiness, a metaphor for everyone getting really patriotic while also being able to arrest troublemakers more easily. And this bonus happiness will last until either peace is declared or until you've taken so much aggro that war-happiness turns into war-weariness (& people start getting really grumpy instead).

    Even with all this bonus happiness I've gained over the last few years, I'm still lagging in my approval rating as I push the slider to its max to get to Astronomy. However, I have gained in leaps and bounds with regards territory, though London is dropping down the global rankings from having delayed Wonder building for so long (though that is just about to change):

    [​IMG]

    And I now have somewhere at least vaguely respectable to bring my potential mates and favoured dignitaries so that they wont be taking the piss out me the moment my back is turned. The downside is I have been told that some of my rivals are starting to accuse me of wasteful decadence:

    [​IMG]
     
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  7. IncendiaryDevice Arcane

    IncendiaryDevice
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    310AD

    With building infrastructure so key to my plans, the second island is still lacking settlers. Most of my cities are still either finishing off their Universities or building Aqueducts to allow them to grow beyond size 6. London could have been a good source for Settler production having already completed the great wonder of Copernicus' Observatory, however, the Persians have buggered up my plans for containment by being the civ who got to build the Great Lighthouse great wonder, allowing them to sail upon the sea squares, rendering my naval blockade useless. As a result the race is now on to quickly produce as many Settlers as possible at the same time as producing military units equally quickly, so the capital has once again been called upon to churn out some armies instead. Canterbury, however, has proven to be an excellent Settler farm, able to stay at size 10-12 while still getting a Settler out every 10 turns. All-in-all, I've spent the past few hundred years growing vertically rather than horizontally, even though I urgently need to start the horizontal asap.

    [​IMG]

    So, in the meantime, I've had to cancel the war with Persia, or, rather, they've finally allowed me to ask for peace. I don't really want to spend the next hundred turs trying to second guess which city they're going to land next to. On top of this, they've also had time now to build some harbours, as have Russia, allowing me to start the all important luxury trading, something that would have been prevented by war in Persia's case. This now means I have four luxuries keeping everyone happy and the war happiness is no longer very relevant anyway. Also, by getting the ivory from Persia this early allows me a shot at beating them to building The Statue of Zeus, a small wonder which provides the best Ancient Age cavalry without you having to build them, they just pop out every 5 turns. It would be a great boon for me if Hastings manages to pull this off as Horses are the one resource I'm lacking atm, not to mention the benefits of productionless military unit production.

    [​IMG]

    Weirdly enough, this now means that Persia is really happy with me again, as is often the case with trading deals. The new addition to the map are the Americans, in teal, and the Byzantines, in their familiar red. The Byzantines are just north of the Mayans and the Americans are just to the right of the Byzantines. This now means that I have contact with all eight of the game's luxuries and as soon as everyone builds some harbours I can start getting really happy. I generously provide some nations with the seafaring technology to help them along with this endeavour.

    [​IMG]

    I will also need the navigation technology to fully utilise these new luxury sources as most of them are separated from me by some ocean squares that learning navigation will mitigate. However, at the moment, with many of these civs not even in possession of harbours yet and with a great need to improve my military, combined with my new science beaker boom, now 309 beakers per turn, a whopping 50% increase over just a couple of hundred years ago and still rising rapidly, I can quickly grab a few techs from the military side of the tech tree while I wait:

    [​IMG]

    ^ I really need the science slider back up to 70%-80% asap though, even 6 turns is far too many turns for my liking, and this is where those luxuries will come into great use in reducing the happy slider ^

    [​IMG]

    Here you can see how all of this has effected London in comparison to previous London screencaps. Now everyone is working, happy people vastly outnumber unhappy and the beaker production is now a gorgeous stream of compacted gold, single handedly producing enough beakers for 3 good cities, and this is just at 60% beaker generation. The next wonder goal for London will be Newton's University, which is not too far off, as this will then add the equivalent of yet another university on top of the already doubled up technology buildings and wonders. However, Magellan's Voyage great wonder and a Marketplace would be great to squeeze in before then if possible.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    As a result London is now once again back in the top spot. Also of note is the fact that one of my second cities, Hastings, is also now competing with the world's capitals for cultural significance and, should it complete the Statue of Zeus, it should be on the top-list for the duration. As per my concerns mentioned earlier, however, I've dropped back in the global land area charts, something I'm all too well aware of.

    [​IMG]

    A nice bonus, my Palace no longer looks like a cave! A bit like my empire though, it still looks a bit anaemic while growing vertically instead of horizontally.

    [​IMG]
     
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  8. IncendiaryDevice Arcane

    IncendiaryDevice
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    430AD

    What a difference a few years can make. All of my core cities have now advanced beyond the brick wall of size 6. This will allow a rapid increase in beaker production combined with the bonus for being a Republic. One of the hardest aspects of converting to a Republic really early is that in a Republic you are only given one free soldier per town, making unit expenses extremely restrictive while most of your towns are size 6 and under. As soon as the town becomes a size 7 city then that number jumps up to 3 free units. Not only does this allow one to have a much larger army, but it also allows one to crank up the beaker production % slider another notch without having to suffer too much of a negative end-of-year balance. Once the Granaries are built then their growth will speed up even further and some of them can even start taking over the burden of Settler production. I like to build Granaries after the Aqueduct, rather than before, because a lot of towns will have very low production but high food on the way to size 6 & you'll usually get to size 6 before the Granary is complete anyway, from size 7 onwards the food requirement for a size increase is doubled, usually meaning that the cheaper Granary can simply get built while growing from size 7 to 8. Growing from size 7 to 8 doesn't give you the Granary bonus anyway, whether it's pre-built or not. With plenty of Game squares in the third rung of development, in the icy wastelands, growth is coming along very sharply as well, which is great.

    [​IMG]

    I've still managed to pump out a few Settlers in the last few years and managed to get a strong hold on the second island. I'm still waiting for the inevitable Persian rush for the land, but, as of yet, it hasn't happened, which I am not complaining about. A marvellous bit of serendipity occurred when I settled a town next to Oxford and it gave me Cambridge, lol. You just can't plan shit like that. Well, you probably could, but I seriously doubt anyone's ever bothered to commit town name order to memory, though you probably could. Ironically, for this game, they've both been built in a location where, if they do even get that far, they'll probably be among the last locations to build a University :D I'm building a Courthouse in Oxford with the aim of building my Forbidden Palace here. The courthouse will reduce the production corruption and allow the town to complete the extremely expensive small wonder of the Forbidden Palace a heck of a lot quicker. Putting my FP in Oxford will have a huge and dramatic effect in reducing corruption across the entire island, making my second island almost as productive as my main island.

    [​IMG]

    Here you can see the dramatic increase in free units, the first of my gorgeous Ancient Cavalry and the growing stack of Medieval Infantry, all itching to go get some Persian revenge. The Caravels are being built to rush out and explore the world now that I have Navigation and can sail anywhere without the threat of sinking. This will also be crucial for making sure there is more than one route to any potential luxury trades.

    [​IMG]

    Like my empire, my palace is also starting to take a more imposing shape as it starts to grow horizontally as well as just vertically.

    [​IMG]

    The upshot of all this gradual infrastructure building and directed preparation is that my beaker production has at last born bounteous fruit, my current yearly production now being well over 100% what it was at 10BC. And as soon as I can get all those other luxuries in then I can start pushing the slider even harder and getting out of the 20% happiness stranglehold.

    [​IMG]

    I would have liked to have been learning technologies at 4 turns per tech at this point, but without those luxuries I'm still at 5 turns per technology, which is not min/max perfect, but is more than satisfactory for my needs. In going for a spaceship victory it's not usually relevant to get the Navigation technology as it's a dead-end tech that is not required to pass to the next level (see the stop marker in the corner), however, for Archipelago maps the opposite is generally truer, in that the longer you leave it, the more long-term waste you generate by not giving yourself access to all the world's luxuries. Not only this, but also that you'll want all the world explored as quickly as possible because in Civ3 you're plans can come to a desperate halt should the game decide to hide natural resources from you as the game progresses & the last thing you want to be doing is getting in a panic because you can't find any Rubber ;)

    [​IMG]

    I'm still a bit bothered that London is still stuck producing units instead of Wonders, but it's work here is nearly done. What I am delighted about is that its beaker production is nearly into triple figures and that the squares around the city can be switched between max-beakering and max-production and max-food depending on what I need. Atm it's working for max-beakering.

    [​IMG]

    Another great bit of news is that York is also now competing with the world's capitals, though the bad news is that I'm still slipping down the land area charts, even with more effort put into horizontal expansion.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2018
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  9. IncendiaryDevice Arcane

    IncendiaryDevice
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    540AD

    The next phase of development is the Marketplaces. The primary function of Marketplaces is a bit mute in Civ3, in that it just boosts non-corrupt gold income after happiness and beaker deductions. As this is a beaker prioritised game there's very rarely going to be any spare money to boost with Marketplaces. Other than small bonuses here and there they could even be a financial drain due to their upkeep costs in some locations. However, their secondary use is the reason for building them here as each second luxury, combined with a Marketplace, dramatically boosts city happiness. So, basing your game around luxury acquiring will greatly benefit from Marketplaces regardless of any other costs or benefits of those buildings as with luxuries + Marketplaces one no longer needs to build any other happiness buildings at this stage of the game, such as Temples, Colosseums and Cathedrals & any happiness wonders, which is a huge saving by itself. The drawback is having to trade something for a luxury, but at this level and for this kind of game, our tradable goods are plentiful technologies, all of which are in very high demand by the relatively backwards AIs.

    Having completed all building phases, Hastings can now replace London as my military production centre and London can finally get back to building wonders. In this instance I'm not to bothered about building the one currently being built, it's just a pre-build to save up some production shields to convert to my desired wonder which comes after learning a tech about 10 turns away.

    [​IMG]

    Island 2 continues to get filled at a satisfactory pace & still no sign of the Persians, much to my immediate surprise. Perhaps they've found better places to search at this point in time. Maybe I'll get a small miracle and be able to completely fill the island before they arrive? Oxford is also just one turn away from starting the Forbidden Palace, a big goal for an out-of-the-way location, and sometimes off-puttingly so, but is so worth the effort IMO.

    [​IMG]

    And the luxuries are starting to really pour in now, with 6 out of the game's available 8 already in action. The trading advisor is a bit of a fake news dealer here, because your civ has no benefit at all from having more than one of the same luxury, none whatsoever. The only benefit of more than one luxury is that you get to use it to trade away, but since Civ3 is designed so that AIs barely ever trade just like-for-like, single luxury trades with AIs are so rare as to be almost pointless and something only useful for extremely specific circumstances, such as gold prioritised games or much higher difficulty levels where you're grabbing at everything you can, no matter how meagre. Usually though, it is in your best interests to not let the AIs have any luxuries & the sole benefit of owning more than one is that it means there's one less for an AI to have.

    You'll notice I haven't taken the Byzantine's wines luxury yet. I could do, but I don't wish to trade any technologies with them at this point in time. They are currently the leading AI with regards to techs and I have no interest in giving them even more reason to be so at this point in time.

    [​IMG]

    I don't currently need more than 6 anyway. As you can see from Canterbury's city screen, everyone's working their tiles without any problems as it is with the 6 unhappy faces exactly matched by 6 happy faces. All of my core cities will be able to get to size 12 without me having to juggle either the luxury slider nor by converting workers to other professions.

    Canterbury has been developed to be what is described as a Settler Farm. In that it has enough of a food surplus to produce Settlers without particularly hampering its own population numbers. When the food bank reaches maximum, in 3 turns, it cannot grow to size 13 as 12 is the limit prior to the Hospital technology, but it will complete a Settler. When the Settler pops out the size of the town will drop to size 10, but size 10 with a full food bank, thereby automatically growing to size 11 the same or next turn. It will have 2/3 turns free to build something else it wants to build and then it will be ready to, once again, produce a Settler for just a single population drop.

    [​IMG]

    All this preparing and building towards happiness has now enabled me to finally escape the 20% happiness stranglehold and finally drop to just 10%, allowing the beaker production to get to the magical number of 80%. Beaker production is now 150% what it was just a couple of hundred years ago at an excellent milestone of just over half a thousand per year.

    [​IMG]

    getting over 500 beakers per year is a magic number for the medieval era as you can now see that Banking has finally reached its minimum point of just 4 turns to learn (4 turns being a hard minimum coded into the game by the developers, you cannot learn a tech quicker than 4 turns, even if the tech costs even less beakers than your yearly output).

    To get an idea of how quickly tech costs ramp up, here's some price differences for certain techs I've learnt so far in this era:

    Monotheism, the first tech I learned in this tree cost me 1449 beakers. Astronomy cost me 2019 beakers & Chemistry cost me 2412 beakers. So you might imagine, at the start of this tree, that 200 beakers per year is ok, 7 or 8 turns per tech doesn't sound much, but as you progress that 200 becomes weaker and weaker to quite a dramatic degree, requiring a whopping 13 turns for Chemistry. Even achieving the very respectable goal of doubling the 200 would still leave you 6 or 7 turns to complete Chemistry, but you wont feel like you're progressing. By tipping that 500 mark as quick as you can your really slamming everything on the page into that 4/5 turn bracket.

    [​IMG]

    As each town gets to the magical size 7 another set of units gets added to the free army allocation. I now have ample units to feel defensively secure on my main island without having to break the bank. Even by international standards I have already caught up with most of the AIs to have a diplomatically strong 'average' military.

    [​IMG]

    And two more civs have been found, the Iroquois and the French. The Iroquois are the large purple civ sharing a very large island with the blue Mayans, and are, by far, that one civ that has been continuously outperforming me in the land-space leader-board. Lincoln still hasn't built any harbours yet, which is where the 8th and final luxury will eventually come from. The French are the pink guys to the left of the red Romans, a likely completely ignorable nation with no luxuries and no means to trade for technologies with any other civs. Will probably be in the Ancient Age for the entire game, or close enough.

    [​IMG]

    My palace finally looks like a palace. Very imposing and respectable. Now I just need to beef it up a bit and fill in the gaps, much like my empire, it's reached that point of perfect equilibrium.

    [​IMG]

    Not much change in the global standings, just some climbing in the land area stakes and declining in the gold income, a result of finally pushing to settle island 2 combined with pushing beaker production to 80% to the detriment of general taxation.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2018
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  10. The Brazilian Slaughter Arcane

    The Brazilian Slaughter
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    Sounds like its time to get the Persians then.

    Why not harder dificulties?
     
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  11. IncendiaryDevice Arcane

    IncendiaryDevice
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    6,609
    I will have to take some of the Persian land at some point as I'll max out my current territory's beaker capacity at some point, it's a matter when to do it really. When is the most optimum time, etc, which is not at the moment.

    I've got spaceship victories at all levels up to Emperor, but the game changes after that and becomes more about the traditional Civilisation lolathon of exploits than just playing a chilled building game. With regards to Monarch and Emperor, the two difficulties after Regent, it's just as 'easy' to get a victory, it's just that, like a lot of RPGs, all it means is that the game is exponentially more grindy, with such things as techs costing exponentially more to learn combined with not being able to generate enough of a tech lead to make luxury collection easily possible for the whole game.

    let's say I started in exactly the same location on an Emperor start, nothing would be that different other than the fact that I would be a lot further back in tech progress and would likely have to invade island 2 rather than settle it, thereby also contributing to make it less of a building game and more of a military game. You cannot underestimate the impact of paying for an army in the early stages of the game and just how many turns this extends the game down the road. Basically, to have the best shot at converting the game into a nearly pure builder, but still one with genuine challenges to hamper completely free-building, and with as little slow grinding as possible, then you have to go with Regent. The only slow and sluggish period in this game, as you can see above, was between starting the Medieval Age and learning Astronomy. If all goes well the game should maintain a very brisk pace from here on in. On a higher difficulty you'd be needing a huge amount more land to match the huge increases in tech costs to maintain a good and non-boring steady pace. Like with most games, the normal setting is usually the best setting for fully taking advantage of every aspect of the game, which, in this particular case, is converting it to a building game.
     
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  12. IncendiaryDevice Arcane

    IncendiaryDevice
    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2014
    Parrots:
    6,609
    690AD

    The main island has grown significantly in the past few years, with the second rung of cities all now shooting towards their maximum of 12 working citizens. On top of that, the outskirts in nowhereland are even starting to bare genuine fruit and themselves getting close to or surpassing size 7, each one boosting my free military by a further 2 units. The main core have all completed their Marketplaces and I'm now awash with cities free to build wonders to their heart's content, with York now taking on the sole responsibility for unit production. Well, I say that, but Richmond is now a permanent, but very slow, unit production farm. Trapped in the snow with no coastline and no surplus food, Richmond has barely anything to build and no means to grow beyond size 3, so it might as well just sit there and give me a military unit every 10 turns. Every city also now has a defender, thereby adding greater deterrence to unexpected invasions, with all the horses strategically placed to rush to any point in one turn for any needed emergency back-up.

    The world map is now also very nearly complete in good time for the soon to be discovered crucial resource of Coal. Coal, like Iron, is a very important resource that will need to be found and settled on pretty much as soon as it's discovered as it permits you to convert your roads into Railroads & all the benefits that brings.

    [​IMG]

    & I have finally finished Settling my second island, much to my great relief. I'm sad to say that the Persians did indeed manage to get a foothold here, right at the fringe of the island, but, to be honest, I was expecting much worse. This will mean that the Persian's will be itching for a fight here at some point, so most of my newly acquired bonus military is going to be sent over here for guard duty. I say newly acquired, but what I mean is that my new units will guard the mainland while the old units, rather than be disbanded, will be sent to island 2. The bad aspect of snow islands is it takes ages to get them going. The good aspect is that you don't need to build many roads or mines and no irrigation at all, so they really don't cost much in regards to paying for Workers to build their basic land infrastructure & once they have got going then their worked tiles will be almost exclusively gold-rich coastal squares.

    [​IMG]

    In terms of military, its coming on very well indeed. My supply of Ancient Cavalry will be coming to an end soon though, as the Wonder that produces them stops producing them when I discover Metallurgy. I've left Metallurgy as the last tech to research for the Medieval Era to maximise the number of Cavalry because both of the tech which allow one to build regular decent cavalry are non-required techs that I shall be ignoring. I should get one or two more before it expires and 9 or 10 will, I should think, be more than enough for some basic guard duty or any potential invasion of southern Persia.

    [​IMG]

    I have now found everyone on the map. The two final additions are the Celts and the Koreans. The Celts are the tiny green island to the right of the light blue Americans & like the French can be immediately ignored for the rest of the game. The Koreans are in blue/purple, just to the south of the regular purple Iroquois and could be something later but are essentially another ignorable lot. The extent of complete ignorability will, of course, depend on how the resources fall. It will, obviously, be much easier and quicker to, for example, take out the Celts, or one of their cities to get to a resource than it would be the Koreans. With any luck all the empty islands I'm also discovering will be kind enough to supply me with any resources I might be missing so that I can avoid the problems of invasion all together.

    [​IMG]

    I have now taken the jump to getting all eight luxuries. America finally built some Harbours and I'm now significantly ahead enough of the Byzantines to not worry too much about giving them a tech. The very un-PC luxuries the game has are: Dyes, Silks, Wines, Furs, Incense, Spices, Ivory and Gems.

    [​IMG]

    And combining those with a Marketplace and, wow, look at that multiplier in the luxuries section. & just look at all those happy folks of London, not even a mildly neutral straight face among them, let alone a frown. When this happens you'll see an occasional fireworks animation above the city on the main map. That's the aesthetic change, the useful change is that cities that do this produce even less corruption, hence why happy faces are also very important for a Spaceship building game. The Capital City doesn't produce any corruption anyway, but this same picture will now be reflected in all of my core rung cities. London is so close to triple figure beaker production it might as well be, but once Newton's University is built it'll shoot past that figure with ease. Tantalisingly close.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Nice to see my beaker production now crack the 600 per year mark. This is kind-of overkill for the Medieval Era, but as soon as the eras change again, in a few turns time, there'll be another huge leap in costs required to complete each tech, so the better prepared the better.

    [​IMG]

    See here how the difference between just over 500 beakers and just over 600 beakers doesn't really change the 5 turns per tech for the most expensive techs of this era.

    [​IMG]

    Like my empire, it's once again time for my palace to sit back and grow tall again. Nice and imposing. Just the frills to add now.

    [​IMG]

    York has also climbed in the international league table of cities, enabling me to have three out of four of the best cities in the world. I can't see either York or Hastings budging Constantinople out of it's spot though, that's clearly a well entrenched and well built leading AI city. I am happy to report that, at last, I have finally become the world's no.1 landowner, which is a great thing to finally see. I'm only number 2 for life expectance because of the fact that I have a lot of new cities that have not built aqueducts yet, these tiddlers on island 2 are dragging down the average. Family size relates to how much excess food each city produces, so when a city gets to it's maximum size it will no longer care about growth and want to work production-rich tiles instead of food-rich tiles. The AI doesn't make this leap of logic and will always prioritise food in order to compete for this stat, which is why you'll often take an AI city and find that everything is irrigated and barely anything is mined. This might be a good tactic once you get to unlimited city sizes, and while you're getting to maximum size, but the AI doesn't seem able to adapt to hitting a maximum and/or having cities be able to switch between both states depending on need.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2018
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  13. IncendiaryDevice Arcane

    IncendiaryDevice
    Joined:
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    Parrots:
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    860AD

    The main island is now just about at capacity. All of the core cities are maxed at size 12 and all of the snowbound towns have got their Aqueduct to take them over size 6. I can now take a moment to infill a few squares with a new small town. Nearly all the map has been explored and I was ready for the worst, but the game kindly gave me a local supply of Coal, so I didn't need to hurry that aspect quite so much after all. Still, better to be safe than sorry. Now that Coal has arrived I'll become a production powerhouse as each square that is producing at least one production shield will then produce one more once a Railroad is placed on it. This will halve the amount of time it takes to build anything and this will enable me to really start munching those Wonders while also being able to produce that all-important military required to invade Persia, not to mention all the benefits for the smaller cities to hurry up and complete their backlog building queues.

    [​IMG]

    Island 2 is progressing well with all of the towns nearing the first marker of size 6. Everything is fully defended and when the war comes with Persia I shouldn't need to transport many troops over there.

    [​IMG]

    Back on the main island the first batch of my invasion stack is already ready; supporting the Medieval Infantry will be some Musketeers for defence and some all-important Artillery, or, as I like to call them, the anti-RNG dice. Civ 3 combat is so hideous it's impossible to make any kind of military planning beyond piling up a monumental stack of millions, your 10 Medieval Infantry could die attacking one city with three Spearmen in it or just three of them could kill all three Spearmen without taking a scratch, that is just how fucked the RNG is in this game.

    [​IMG] is so much more than just a meme for this game, it's the epitome of the sheer range of RNG they implemented whereby the second best attacking unit in the game can be defeated by the second weakest defender in the game.

    What Artillery does is minimise all the absurd rolls down to infinitesimally unlikely as each shot of the Artillery has a chance to wipe out at least one hit point of the unit you're about to attack before you attack. The drawback is that you'll need a decent stack of Artillery, because some will still miss altogether, although the miss rate also dramatically decreases with each artillery upgrade before the unit actually entitled Artillery makes the miss rate noticeably lower.

    Earlier in the game it would be a real burn on the economy to ship out an attacking squad with 10 Catapults, only to have 50% of them miss anyway. Once you get to Artillery half-way into the Industrial era, no army should at least begin a conquest without a gang of Artillery cracking open the first few towns unless you're running a more despotic form of government (that does not have war weariness) and have hundreds of Cavalry to burn uncaring about replacement speed. With Artillery you can usually keep your stack without losing barely anyone & thereby also dramatically reduce the need for replacements.

    The Canons I make here can be upgraded to Artillery as soon as I learn the required technology, but Canons are ok if push comes to shove.


    [​IMG]

    London has completed Newton's University and has finally broken past triple figure beakers per turn, and it's done this with just 70% science let alone the 80% I've had it on for the last screenshot (building the army will eat into my beaker budget). London is building Magellan's Voyage because... why not. I won't really need its benefit, that of an extra sea movement point for all my boats, but because building 5 wonders in a city gives you another Palace Upgrade & because it will likely trigger a Golden Age, what with the English having the Seafaring character trait. The Golden Age will dramatically boost both beaker and shield production for 20 turns. You only get them once in Civ 3 so its good to try and get it when it'll make the most difference.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    When we last checked in here my civ was producing about 610 beakers per year at 80% dedication. I'm now at about 660 at just 70% output. And I'm delighted to have just 7 turns per tech going into the new era. Just to get an idea of how much the tech jumps in costs between the medieval era and the Industrial era, here are the difference in costs of the last and first of the respected eras:

    Magnetism: 2761 Beakers
    Steam Power: 4866 Beakers

    And they'll be increasing greatly as the era goes on. So it should be evident that the next target for Beaker production will be around the 1,000+ per year mark. going back to 80% as soon as possible will do a bit of that, as will getting my cities beyond size 12 and getting them into the Metropolis state as soon as possible.


    [​IMG]

    The way to go beyond size 12 is to build Hospitals. Unfortunately, this requires a dead-end tech that, in some games, such as those with more plentiful immediately available grassland and so many more cities, or games where you're not too worried about slow pacing, one can not bother to take the Sanitation technology, However, here it is crucial and will be briefly sidetracked towards. The target after that will be Replaceable Parts, which will allow Artillery and halve the work-speed of my Workers, another great booster for increased production as they lay the Railroads so much quicker. Replaceable Parts will also reveal all the Rubber deposits on the map and Rubber is required to build a spaceship part, so the sooner I find and establish that the better.

    [​IMG]

    Two more additions to the Palace have been awarded to me, but you'd barely notice, it's the two connecting blocks between the main tower and the two side towers, both half-hidden by the frontal spires. It's always a bit of a grind putting these in as they are such underwhelming additions. I still much prefer Civ 2's Palace which allowed you to have treasure spewing out from it.

    [​IMG]

    Not much to say here other than continued slight improvement. Back to no.1 for Annual Income and back up to number 2 for the other two as more Aqueducts get built and the backlogged snow cities convert to growth after prioritising Aqueduct production.

    [​IMG]

    And another landmark has arrived, turn 200. So, turn 100 got me out the Ancient Age, turn 200 takes me into the Industrial era. I like to use the changing of eras as landmarks in most of my non-combat Civ 3 games, usually to have got out the Ancient era by 10AD and to have learned Steam Power by 1000AD. So, for this game, I'm really happy that I'm well ahead of schedule.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2018
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  14. IncendiaryDevice Arcane

    IncendiaryDevice
    Joined:
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    Parrots:
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    1265AD

    Wow, so much has happened since I last updated I don't even know where to start. This part of the game has been the most intensive, exciting and unputdownable stage of the game. The peak of good ol' Civ's just-one-more-turn design. This has been the first real breather since 860AD, so I shall take a moment to fill you in on as much as possible, but please excuse me if I forget one or two of the plethora, if nothing else just for the sake of some kind of brevity.

    Firstly, completing Magellan's Voyage in London did indeed bring forth my Golden Age. This coincided almost perfectly with learning the Sanitation technology, allowing me to very quickly construct Hospitals in all my main cities, instantly converting them to unlimited Metropolises, of which I currently have 9. On top of the obvious bonuses to this, in a Republic government a city that converts to a Metro will also gain me one more free military unit.

    Secondly, all of the Metropolises have been fully railroaded. Railroads are wonderfully OP in Civ 3 and allow unlimited mobility in one single turn. I can get a Medieval Infantryman from Reading to Persia inside one single turn. And this is on top of the bonus of extra production shields that Railroads provide. For island games, this also means that you only need one small stack to be able to defend the entire island, there is no reason at all to stack up each city 'just in case', enabling a near full deployment when going on the offensive.

    Thirdly, I have taken the opportunity to invade southern Persia and take two of their best cities. Unfortunately, when I learned Replaceable Parts, the tech which creates the Artillery upgrade and reveals the Rubber deposits, there was no Rubber anywhere near me. It would take many turns for me to get to the nearest easy Rubber square so I just upgraded my handful of Canons to Artillery (they don't require Rubber) and settled on invading with older units such as Musketmen and Medieval Infantry & a few Med Inf that'd I'd upgraded to Guerrillas, who also don't require Rubber.

    As I predicted, not even machine gun wielding guerrillas were strong enough to hold of the sheer might of Ancient Age Persian Immortals :D so my War Weariness started to escalate really quickly, even with lots of quick and easy victories a couple of units still died hilariously obscure RNG deaths. I decided to settle with the two conquests for the moment and declared peace as quickly as possible. I'm right outside their capital and once I get some decent mobile units (ie: Tanks) then I should be able to grab whatever else I need here when the time warrants.

    Another benefit of waiting until now to invade is that the Cultural pressure on their two coastal cities from my two coastal cities had been running in my favour for hundreds of years so that, by the time I invaded, the citizens of those cities were almost hoping I would anyway. There were barely any resisters and those that did were quelled very quickly. I have had no reason to shrink their populations and the additional luxuries my invasion brings makes them more happy than they were under Persian rule. As a result I have inherited fully functioning and very beaker-productive already-cities.

    I've built three more Great Wonders, two at the Capital and one at Hastings, all of which have been a great boon. At Hastings I built a Wonder that removes the upkeep cost of all my Barracks, Sun-Tzu's War Academy, which is also kind enough to put a free Barracks in all towns that don't already have one. As mentioned, London has had the sailing Wonder, but also Darwin's Voyage, which gives you two free Technologies upon completion, enabling me to jump to a technology which allows London to start building the Hoover Dam.

    The entire world is now fully mapped out. No resource shall henceforth go unnoticed.

    [​IMG]

    In addition to snagging the two southern Persian cities I cleaned up their solitary possession on island 2, making the island much more defensively secure and a complete whole. Population is growing steadily and there's still plenty of room here for vertical growth.

    [​IMG]

    The closest easiest Rubber deposit turned out to be all the way up here on a shitty little nothing island that took me about 20 turns to get to and settle & put up a harbour. Rather aptly, I was given Berwick. No-one else on the planet even knows the place exists. When they do find out, it'll probably get invaded or attacked, so I've had to sacrifice a fair few units to it's defence, the sacrifice being that owning Berwick is basically a net-cost that Berwick itself could never cover, I'm literally paying a large sum every turn to have the resource.

    [​IMG]

    Here you can see how much my free military has boomed since the last update. I now have what the game deems to be a strong military, ie: one of the best, if not the best, in the game, and it's only costing me peanuts per turn. As you can see, my invasion force wasn't huge, but it was ample for just quickly snagging a couple of cities.

    [​IMG]

    London is doing very well indeed, its beaker production now double what it was when I last updated you, it's production more than double and every square is now being worked. The downside to taking your city into Metropolis status is that for each citizen over size 12 it'll start producing pollution. As you can see, there's now an awful lot of hazard signs in London. On top of this, certain buildings will produce their own pollution, to which London has built a factory, meaning that it's hazard signs are starting to pile up as quick as all its other resources. That orange splodge in the top right of London's workable area is Pollution, it makes the square unusable until a Worker cleans the Pollution away. If you don't clean it quickly enough it'll also start destroying the square's improvements.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    As I hoped, I've managed to get the science slider back to 80%. Also as I had hoped I've managed to get the yearly beaker output to over 1,000 per year. Also nice to see those really happy Persians loving being rescued from their goat-herding incestuous despotic overlords.

    [​IMG]

    And here you see the result of getting that crucial beaker-per-turn number up to the right amount; techs progressing well and at a good and timely speed of the highly desired 4/5 turns per tech rate. At the bottom of the tree there you can see the huge benefit of learning Scientific Method and then building Darwin's Voyage, as the two free tech can buy you Atomic Theory and Electronics, both very expensive and, honestly, rather boring techs to get though otherwise.

    I've just finished learning Refining, which is crucial for a space race game as it reveals the Oil deposits on the map. I'm delighted that the game has been kind enough to give me lots of local deposits of oil. The next resource worry will come in the next era, for this era, that side of things is all finished with now. The next biggy for me here will be learning Motorised Transport, so I can get a few Tanks rolling.

    [​IMG]

    Here's an inside look at the city screen of my main Island 2 city, Oxford, the one with the Forbidden Palace. They might not look like much, but each of the cities on island 2 will be giving well over 40 beakers per turn each soon enough. That's nothing to be dismissive about, even if they can't produce for shit nor have the food to become Metropolises. It takes an awful lot of time and effort to get them going, but once they do, they'll pay off when it starts to really matter.

    [​IMG]

    My palace is almost complete. The two new additions are the rather underwhelming pointy bits above the door that come with the so-hidden-you'd-be-forgiven-for-not-noticing-them round mini-turrets to the right and left of the door & the more obvious and wholesome upper connector between the keep and the left hand tower. There are only two more upgrades available before the game considers your Palace complete, even if you continue to achieve things which trigger upgrades.

    [​IMG]

    With the completion of the Hospitals, I'm now safely in the number 1 spot for Life expectancy, regardless of any yet-to-be-built aqueducts. Family size continues to be large as well what with everyone prioritising food now that the final barrier to vertical expansion has been passed. However, I've shot from no.1 right down to no.12 with regards to pollution, and I doubt this will ever change, even if I do manage to clear all of it up on the turn I take a screenshot.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2018
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  15. IncendiaryDevice Arcane

    IncendiaryDevice
    Joined:
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    1345AD

    There's a lot less to keep an eye on now as the game enters it's home-straight phase. Now it's all about neatening up, putting in those last few Beaker buildings, getting some Wonders and preparing for last base of the home run. As none of the Metropolises have too much to build any more, and, since they're all zooming past a population that even multiplied Luxuries can keep happy, Hastings is finally going to construct the Sistine Chapel. Sistine will double the happiness effect of all Cathedrals. But, as yet, I don't have any Cathedrals. Waiting until now to build the Temples and Cathedrals means that they are a quick, cheap and an easy way to sharply improve happiness and once Sistine is up I'll be setting about building lots of Temples and Cathedrals, hopefully restoring some cities to fireworks level of happiness. This will also give Hastings a big boost on the global charts.

    [​IMG]

    Island 2 is coming along very nicely with many more towns converting to cities.

    [​IMG]

    London's fifth Wonder, the Hoover Dam, increases the production of all cities who also have a river in their workable boundary. Being the fifth wonder in one city it also gave me my final Palace upgrade.

    [​IMG]

    And the palace is now complete. You can see here why I left the top part until last. It's really ugly isn't it. No matter how you look at it, it just looks wrong. And stupid. Like a beer can and straws hat on a diplomat at a serious meeting.

    [​IMG]

    I forgot to mention the importance of Mass Production in my last post. This is the next Beaker milestone on a spacerace Island building game, as this technology provides you with Commercial Docks, which, once build, add another $ to each worked sea square. And in an island game of this type, that's a lot of additional gold that building is gonna generate. The drawback? It also produces pollution. The good side? Sea squares don't get polluted in this game. Next up, tanks, planes, and a whole new era!

    [​IMG]

    As each Metropolis maxes out their food to citizen ratio, family size once again shrinks as most cities only have an excess of one or two corn bundles per turn. Quite often with Metropolises, they'll get to a state whereby they'll grow to, say, size 24, but then, because of that growth, then be in deficit of food by one corn bundle per turn. These metros will gradually have their stored granary corn eaten away and then 'starve' back to 23 citizens & you'll laugh at the game for telling you that the citizens of Metro5 are starving. Likewise, the turn order of events means that pollution will also cause a metro to 'starve' back down to size 23, as the pollution knocks out a workable square, then the game calculates how much spare food the city has, then it lets you have your turn. It takes ages but it's an amusing irritation of the turn order.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2018
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  16. IncendiaryDevice Arcane

    IncendiaryDevice
    Joined:
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    1395AD

    Aside form the odd city, everyone has now reached pretty much their maximum city size. Also this post you can see me putting into effect all the building plans from the last update, with Temples, Cathedrals and Commercial Docks filling up most of the production rosters. And tanks, of course. The big change to the aesthetic is that I've now entered the Modern Era, so all my metropolises have converted to that iconic skyscraper skyline. I'm gearing up to take a few more Persian cities, as the Beaker requirements start to get really quite extreme at this stage of the game.

    [​IMG]

    For the very large metros, such as London, you can see here how, even with the added multipliers of religious buildings going towards the happy count, there still remains quite a handful of unhappy citizens. This is not problematic, it just shows how difficult it is to maintain 100% happiness when you go large without damaging beaker production via the luxury slider. Also, as each metro finds itself without any more tiles to work, but still growing, I'm converting all of my spare citizens into scientists for the small beaker bonus rather than entertainers or any other alternative. This is a great way to add that extra 50-100 beakers to your annual total when you're land-restricted. The scientists only produce a small bonus because their bonus doesn't get multiplied by the various science multiplier buildings, which is a shame, but understandable. I don't have any intention to build Universal Suffrage at this point in time, I'm just using it to store shields for the next two crucial Great Wonder: The SETI programme, which will give London yet another beaker multiplier & The Internet, which will put a beaker multiplier building in every city that already has a University, what the game calls Research Labs.

    [​IMG]

    Wall Street is only a Small Wonder, so doesn't appear on the global rankings page, but it's a crucial wonder for a spacerace as it gives you an excellent gold bonus every turn, making it much easier to keep the science slider at 80% without too much gold loss per turn. You can see the Cathedral on the bottom left and the Commercial Dock just below the imposing skyscrapers.

    [​IMG]

    At the start of the Modern Era, the costs for each tech ramp up a great deal once again & we go back to starting the era at 7 turns per tech. This is why it's crucial to go for Computers and then Miniaturisation first, to get those science wonders, otherwise this whole era would drag exponentially at a time when you're essentially sprinting to the finish line. Logic and desire would make one go for both Fission and Rocketry first, because those are the ones that reveal the final two natural resources on the map, but, nope, the quicker I can get all these tech to 6 turns or less, the much more enjoyable the game will be, exponentially. Don't forget, the closer a Civ game gets to the end of the tech tree, the slower it takes to process each turn. Or, rather, the longer the game goes on.

    [​IMG]

    I'm really hoping Hastings takes out Constantinople by the end of the game in the great leagues, just for personal pride. Other than that, not a lot to say here as it's pretty much a no change scenario from the last update.

    [​IMG]
     
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  17. Rahdulan Arcane Patron

    Rahdulan
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    Stop making me want to replay Civ3. Following this one.
     
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  18. IncendiaryDevice Arcane

    IncendiaryDevice
    Joined:
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    You are right, it is cruel of me isn't it. I'll apologise by saying:

    That sound that hits you when you enter the Modern Era, omg, such a release and reward:



    Then a bit of air guitaring:



    nicely spiced with a techno breeze:

     
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  19. Storyfag Arcane

    Storyfag
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    Location:
    A Dark Place
    That first track is almost something out of a Might and Magic game :obviously:
     
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  20. baud Learned

    baud
    Joined:
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    I can't say much about the music, but the LP is pretty cool
     
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  21. IncendiaryDevice Arcane

    IncendiaryDevice
    Joined:
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    1495AD

    All necessary building programmes have now been completed in most of the big metros. For the first time in the game, I can start applying Wealth, which doesn't build anything, it just converts unused production into gold. Other than that it's just a case of building more military units until I decide it's a complete waste of yearly cost to go any further. There's still some room for a tiny bit of vertical growth on the periphery, but it's quite small fry, but every little really does help at the is stage of the game. You'll notice York has started 'starving', what I mentioned about in the last update, because it's food surplus is now just one wheat bale per turn, but a new citizen costs two wheat bales, so it will grow to 16, then be at -1 wheat until it drops back to size 15, whereby it'll then slowly start to grow to size 16 again, in a continual loop.

    The game has been kind enough to supply me with copious local sources of Aluminium, so I'll have no need to conquer anything for this crucial resource that appears once Rocketry is learned. The last resource, Uranium, will appear after learning Fission in just 5 turns time.

    [​IMG]

    Island 2 has also almost reached maximum vertical size. There's going to be little point building a lot of the late game buildings here as most will be restricted to size 12 anyway, what with no land to irrigate for food, so Universities, Marketplaces and Commercial Docks are kinda the done-and-dusted here before I'll likely start applying Wealth, if Wealth is even worth it here with production so low in these towns anyway. I doubt many will get to a max-point anyway. If you think it looks like a painfully slow way to get Universities up and running, please be aware my cash-flow is strong and I'll likely rush-finish many of them with cash if I feel like it's worth it.

    [​IMG]

    Also for the first time in the game, I'm now running at 90% Beaker production. What with all the happiness buildings and Wonders I've been adding, I've finally taken the plunge and completely cancelled any happiness % and only really require a 10% tax rate. You see where it says "From Interest" in the top left there, that's the yearly bonus from the Wall Street small wonder. I'll now have to keep an eye on any size 12 cities without a marketplace more carefully, and make more effort to remember to renegotiate my luxury deals when they run out, but if the worst comes to the worst and I click end-turn after forgetting, there's not too much going on to make a one-turn reload not too much of a pain. A city will go into disorder if there are more unhappy people than happy & this is a real grind when you get individual pop-ups for each city rioting without you being able to interact with the game, it's like an unskippable cut-scene of doom. It's the only time I ever reload in a Civ3 game. If you use something called CivAssist, a supposedly non-cheat convenience mod, one of it's major benefits is letting you know about cities that'll riot next turn, something the main game is frustratingly inept at, to which the mechanics are many and varied as to why this is, but I'll spare you every detail. I don't use CivAssist & I just use a one-turn reload instead for this one specific game flaw & even still, the cut-scene is so horrendous I still try my best to battle through the UI to ensure this doesn't happen, it's just that with a hundreds of turns game, even 99% alertness will still result in a couple of turns being ended before I was properly ready.

    My Beaker count is now nearing acceptable for the modern era, finally getting past 2,000 per year for the first time, thanks to building those two science Wonders I mentioned in the previous update. Just as a guide, the last tech, Flight, in the Industrial Age cost 7357 Beakers, while the first tech in the modern era, Rocketry, cost me 9,662 Beakers & Miniaturisation, just the second level of modern era techs, cost me a whopping 12,822 Beakers. So you can see that I really need to be closer to 3,000 than 2,000 Beakers per year for this era. Ideally.

    [​IMG]

    You can really see the benefits of stacking all those science Wonders in your capital here, London's Beaker slider is nearly out of green space. For some games, games where you can go to 100% science and have even more gold-based squares in the city, it's a lovely aesthetic to make the Beaker row not only break out of it's green confines, but actually go into the luxury and buildings lists and, possibly, even off the page entirely.

    [​IMG]

    The SETI programme is in the top right here, that's the one that adds yet another University-like multiplier to your city's Beaker count, and the Internet Wonder is just behind the palace, next to the Temple and behind the Granary, the internet puts a research lab in all my cities that have a University, the research lab is another Beaker multiplier like Universities and Libraries. For those trying to play a pollution-free 'green' game, Research Labs, unfortunately, produce pollution.

    [​IMG]

    As you can see, even with a lot of huge boosts to Beaker production in the last couple of hundred years, I'm still only rocking a 5/6 turn per tech rate for the modern era when I'd really prefer 4/5 turns per tech. Next up is Fission, to reveal the Uranium, then it'll be the all important Space Flight, which will allow me to build the small Wonder of the Apollo Programme. This isn't the end however, as building this just then permits me to start building my Spaceship. Luckily I won't need every tech here to build my spaceship, just those techs that allow a part to be built. As a result I'm afraid this game wont see the world cured of Cancer :(

    [​IMG]

    I'm getting quite nicely geared up for any resource requirements and/or the necessary second invasion Persia. Here's another reason why I'm finally able to go to 90% Beaker production, my huge military is currently only costing me 4 gold per turn, also hence why I'm currently building a lot more military units.

    [​IMG]

    No real change in any of the standings once again, but some of the stats are starting to look a lot more civilised.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2018
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  22. IncendiaryDevice Arcane

    IncendiaryDevice
    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2014
    Parrots:
    6,609
    1575AD

    It's war. Well, it will be next turn with Persia, but already is with America. You'll also notice my pointless predilection for using Destroyers as coastal outposts, serving no function other than bringing light to the fog of war around my islands. It's not cost effective or efficient, I just like seeing the AI surprise attacks before they're surprises.

    [​IMG]

    The final resource, Uranium showed itself when I learned Fission, and I had no local supplies. The easiest supply was on another remote island many turns from home, an island that had recently been settled by the Persians who're finally using their Lighthouse wonder to settle all within their reach. The deposit is literally underneath the soldiers stacked up there next to Zohak, so I'll be raising Zohak to the ground and settling a new town right on top of the resource. This will mean I wont need any workers to work the resource before I can utilise it and generally speed up the whole process. The drawback is that raising cities causes a massive global impact on public relations and diplomacy. Luckily I don't care about that angle of the game for this game's objective. Like Berwick, this'll just be an expense town with barely any improvements beyond a Harbour.

    [​IMG]

    The sudden need to invade a Persian outpost means that I might as well take this opportunity to finally take their capital city and a few more of their useful cities. I have no real interest in completely overrunning them as over half their towns are fairly pointless and crappy anyway. I think I'm well enough prepared for war now:

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    The Americans invaded me the second they learned Navigation. Now that I'm within sight of victory and because I haven't been giving a shit about reputation, the AI is starting to throw everything and the kitchen sink at me. Not only does having America declare war on me mean I can't neglect my military, it also means I can't trade their luxury, and its this last fact which is likely the AI's true goal. The only way it feels it can slow me down is to take away as many luxuries as it can, trying to knock me off 90% Beaker production and force me back into paying for the luxury slider.

    Declaring war on me is not the only way it can achieve this, the Iroquois and Maya are both potential suppliers of the Fur luxury & all game I've been able to trade with whichever gives the best deal. The AI has worked it so that these two have gone to war with each other, but instead of the Iroquois completely destroying the Maya both quickly and efficiently, it's left them at a kind of stalemate whereby neither of them has any spare resources of Fur, either because the roads on those squares have been left pillaged or because no-one owns those squares any more.

    [​IMG]

    The Apollo Program, one of the best looking city upgrades:

    [​IMG]

    And the spaceship is go. Each component required is listed here along with which technology you require to build it. As you can see, some of the parts require an awful lot of production points, so its usually a good idea to ensure at least 3 or 4 cities have factories & factory multipliers all surrounded by Railroads by this point in the game.

    [​IMG]

    Science output is nearly about where I need it. Another quirk of Civ3 is that the beakers produced by Scientists are calculated into the beaker stream on each city's city screen and do count towards tech progress, but, for some obscure coding reason that was for some unknown reason completely overlooked in development and in all patches and editions, is that these additions are not added to the communal total display at the top of this screen. So while this screen says I'm producing 2,243 Beakers per year, I'm actually producing just over 2,300 as 80+ beakers are being produced by individual scientists in each city.

    [​IMG]

    Just six more techs to go: Synthetic Fibres, Nuclear Power, The Laser, Superconductor, Satellites & Robotics. It would be great if I could get them all down to 4/5 turns rather than 5/6, my increases are keeping pace well enough so far and I'm delighted to get to a rate of 5 turns for Synthetic Fibres, lets just hope I can do the same by the time I get to the even more expensive techs. Hopefully the final invasion of Persia should just tip that scale.

    [​IMG]

    And another milestone is reached, passing turn 300.

    You'll notice another interesting discrepancy in the inner workings of Civ3 here as on this screen you'll see the Iroquois have more world area than me, however, on the screen which rates your land area (the last screenie) I am still no.1. This is the kind of semantics which really should have been ironed out during production. If world area is the stat that matters, why confuse the player by suggesting land area has any value, why can't the land area stat just be a world area stat? You'll also notice another stat which is a bit of a disappointment when playing non-combat games, that the Current Score doesn't ever get very high. Again, another issue with the game's development whereby they put a huge amount of effort into making the game more, so much more, than just a combat game, but then completely failed to adapt the final score calculations to reflect that design goal, with pretty much most of your score determined by nothing more than world area (or is it land area... ;) )

    [​IMG]

    Not much is happening in the stats department, which I'm very happy about, but, OMG, much joy & happiness, Hastings has indeed finally overtaken Constantinople in the world standings. York, however, has completely dropped off the charts :( only to be replaced by Nottingham :) and, hey, maybe Nottingham has enough in it to challenge Chicken Itza for a place by the end of the game.

    [​IMG]
     
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  23. IncendiaryDevice Arcane

    IncendiaryDevice
    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2014
    Parrots:
    6,609
    1625AD

    With my decent stock of tanks combined with a fair amount of Bombers and a some decent Artillery I was quickly and easily able to blitz through the desired Persian cities, including Persopolis, the capital, and both Pasargadae and Sidon. Bombers are a vast improvement over Artillery because Bombers have the ability to actually kill units outright whereas Artillery will never take a unit below their last health point. The drawback with Bombers is that when attacking a town an Artillery unit will always attack the soldiers first whereas the Bomber will randomly kill Soldiers, town population or improvements, which, when you're looking to do as little damage to the town itself as possible and to maximise the effectiveness of your attack, is not what you want. So it's Bombers for wandering units and boats and Artillery for cities and Tanks for finishing anything off. Tanks get two turns per turn, which make them very effective finishers and also enables them to promote quicker, vastly increasing your chances of getting a Military Leader, which even just this small and quick battle provided.

    I was delighted to get these cities for virtually zero damage and all three are already very strong contributors to the Beaker cause. I declared peace extremely quickly and have also made peace with the Americans. While it wouldn't be much bother to take the whole island, there not really a lot of point, it would just mean stretching my border for little reward. You'll also notice that most of my big metros have fully converted to just producing Wealth and that I now only require my Science to be at 80% in order to get the next tech at just 5 turns.

    Arbela is even in a state of fireworks happiness, and this is a good screenie to show the aesthetic of that.

    [​IMG]

    The latest land acquisition is another relatively aptly named town called Bath. Not because Bath is remote in any way, but because it's basically a nearly pure water town, lol. This place is extremely vulnerable to invasion but also extremely easy to defend as without Marines, a very late game technology military unit, the AI wont even be able to land troops here as I can easily and relatively cheaply just leave a guy on every square, blocking any landing parties.

    [​IMG]

    As you can see, while I may be at peace there's not a lot of support for my nation across the globe and how this method of play would not be that great if one was going for a diplomatic victory. The raising of Zohak played a large part in this, as does the fact that many more AIs have now learned Navigation.

    [​IMG]

    I would usually have gone for Nuclear Power before Superconductor and Satellites & I normally leave those two until last, what with the Robotics spaceship part being one of the most expensive parts, but since I have the Military Leader, who can instantly complete all building projects except Great Wonders, I don't need to worry about leaving myself a big build and can finish everything else off before I get there.

    [​IMG]

    The Spaceship is coming along very nicely indeed.

    [​IMG]
     
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  24. IncendiaryDevice Arcane

    IncendiaryDevice
    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2014
    Parrots:
    6,609
    1675AD

    Mainly just Wealthing it up here at the end of the game, rocking a +60 turnly income while still having a sizeable army and 80% science output. Almost as soon as I had declared peace with both the Americans and Persians in the last post, the Byzantines decided to declare war on me, which is an addition time consumption per turn, particularly as they are more apt to harass my far-off outposts than either the Americans or Persians, what with their ancient age naval unit being a unique unit which allows them to bombard from the sea. No-one else gets this ability until the end of the middle ages era.

    [​IMG]

    Not only has Byzantine declared war on me, but now only Rome really stands as any nation that is in anyway happy with my diplomatic envoys.

    [​IMG]

    So it would seem that the AI simply isn't going to let me have all 8 luxuries for the whole game, I'm getting six and no more. As I said in a much earlier post, this is one of the aspects which can be quite challenging on higher difficulty levels and why higher difficulty levels tend to veer you ever more towards combat. Even at Regent it's simply not possible to guarantee maintaining a trade in all eight luxuries for the entire game, the AI usually finds a way to hamper you, by hook or by crook.

    [​IMG]

    Lucky there's not much further to go really. One more session should do the trick.

    [​IMG]

    Looking good.

    [​IMG]

    But much excitement here, lots changing at this point in the game with regards to world standings. Chicken Itza is gone, out the runnings, buh-bye, not only overtaken by Hastings, but also York. And York doesn't even have any Great Wonders. On top of that, Constantinople has dropped a place as well & as Hastings has now finally grabbed the no.2 spot. What we have here is a Constantinople sandwich. Alas, my Approval Rating is suffering due to the decline in luxury imports though and family sizes are, inevitably, shrinking with each passing year as each city fills to the brim with people.

    [​IMG]

    Next time (hopefully) (should be) … victory!
     
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  25. IncendiaryDevice Arcane

    IncendiaryDevice
    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2014
    Parrots:
    6,609
    1725AD

    The moment has arrived. I've made peace with the Byzantines & used my Military Leader to complete the last piece of Spaceship at Nottingham. A mild annoyance to this situation is that when you complete a structure by this method you still have to wait until the next turn for it to be actually complete, which goes against the logic of completing a project. Still, it's still the quickest way possible to complete the Spaceship.

    [​IMG]

    See how the bar is full but it wont change it's wording or image until the interturn processes the new information & hence I can't launch yet.

    [​IMG]

    With everything done and nothing left to do, why not throw a national party? Science output has been dropped to 20% and happy faces have been boosted from zero to 60% of national income. Suck on that, approval ratings chart. Unfortunately this still wont provide a 100% approval score, the game, unfortunately, treats all bonus citizens as merely Content citizens, never either happy nor unhappy & Content citizens actually count against your total happy percentage. The game thinks all my bonus Scientists are literally Spock.

    [​IMG]

    Even with science dropped to 20% I'm quite chuffed to see that tech progression would still have been relatively speedy, a not-too-shabby 15-20 turns per tech.

    [​IMG]



    Interturn:

    LAUNCH.

    [​IMG]



    1730AD:

    This kind of game doesn't normally take me 33 hours. A large amount of this time will have come from making a let's play from it combined with a lot more detailed micromanagement than I normally bother with and, most importantly, for the first time I decided to, at the end of each turn, note down and calculate my beaker spending, which is more time consuming than it needs to be because of always having to manually add the bonus Scientist values to the given automatic totals. I then have to manually add up several turns worth of totals to get to my price paid per tech value.

    Usually, these kind of games take me around the 15 hours mark. Which is ideal for a weekend or a few weeknights. It's kind of like a bell curve, after a certain point more time spent in micromanagement stops having so much of an impact on the long-term result. If you don't care about finishing in a more normal timeframe of 1850-1950 and don't mind having to sit through the drag of AI actions dragging down the interturn processing time, then you can ignore a lot of the hyper-efficiency micromanagement and speed up each individual turn you play. It all depends on what mood you're in.

    [​IMG]

    Game completed with 204 turns to spare, which gives about a thousand bonus score points on Regent.

    [​IMG]

    The little box in the bottom left in the above screen allows you to see the following three screens:

    The first shows how well you've been scoring all game (excluding time bonus):

    [​IMG]

    The second shows what your power levels are/were:

    [​IMG]

    And the last one shows how Culturally dominant you are:

    [​IMG]

    You'll notice in the above that it doesn't tell you what your time bonus was nor how it was calculated, you just know you got one because the listed stats do not equal your total.

    Next up is the High-Striker of historical legacy. This takes your points and converts them into a wording value. The highest is Magnificent. It's a fairly redundant gauge as so much of this will depend on land area. You could win a single city victory with hundreds of turns to spare on Emperor difficulty and still get some rubbish rating like "terrible", but you could do something fairly easy like dominate a continent on Regent and not win until near the end of the game but get magnificent, but we all know which game would provide the greater challenges to the player.

    Still, having said all that, it's a nice animation that feels good at the end of the game, especially when you get something apt, like this:

    [​IMG]

    Next up is the classic comments screen. You can watch this for ages and get some really funny stuff, memey stuff and all that. I also like how the background and faces change depending on what victory you achieved. A diplomatic victory, for example, will have other leaders visibly in love with you. Hmm, or was that the cultural victory, haha, I've played so many they're all confused in my memory. completely defeated nations will be all battered and bruised.

    [​IMG]

    Even this rather excellent run didn't manage to get on my current hall of fame, however:

    [​IMG]

    And only came in 4th when I isolate the results just to show other times I played as England. This isn't my entire history either, this just shows one of my laptops. I've played this game on 3 or 4 machines over the years.

    [​IMG]

    Having said that, this game would still qualify for a place on the official Civilisation III Hall of Fame, as that website judges by date rather than score, so this result would be in the top 10 of everyone who's ever submitted a Huge Regent Space Race Victory over the last 15 years. I shan't be bothering with submitting this result though, as I already have a better result on that list ;)
     
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2018
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