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  • #16
    Trade (cont)

    2.6.12 Predicting Commodity Supply and Demand Lists

    Using Samson’s formulas, it is possible to predict what the supply and demand lists will be for any city at any time in the game. Since these formulas are complicated, and because there is a need to calculate two quotients for each commodity each time a list is updated, it’s difficult to justify the time and effort required to do all of this. Plus, there are so many variables at work in determining the values of commodity supply and demand, it would not be surprising to find out that one or more of the formulas are incomplete or partially incorrect. In fact, while working on this section, I think I uncovered a new problem with the formula for the demand of spice. This will be discussed a little later when illustrating calculations.

    Thus, the use of these formulas may be limited to the most important cities such as the SSC, where a more precise understanding of the ebb and flow of supplies and demands may be desired. Rome, which was the SSC used in my first comparison game, will be used to illustrate the use of these formulas. Rome’s wildcards were figured out in the previous section, and the save attached there named “wild” will also apply here.

    Before getting into the calculations for Rome, a few words about Civ II geography might be helpful, so that players using Samson’s formulas will not make any errant assumptions that might throw off the accuracy of their calculations. Civ II has an option to use small, medium and large maps, and each tile for all maps is assigned a horizontal and vertical map coordinate. The zero horizontal coordinate (or zero meridian) corresponds to the International Date Line of our Earth, which makes Civ II’s mean meridian correspond to the Prime Meridian of Earth, so it is important not to confuse Civ II’s zero meridian with Earth’s zero longitudes. Less confusing are Civ II’s vertical coordinates, which start with zero at the North Pole and reach their maximum at the South Pole.

    For each of the standard map sizes (small, medium and large) used by Civ II, here are the key statistics:

    Horizontal Map Coordinates (east and west)

    Number of Coordinates (Map Width) 80, 100, 150
    Range 0-79, 0-99, 0-149
    Zero Meridian 0, 0, 0
    Mean Meridian 40, 50, 75
    Range of Western Longitudes 1-39, 1-49, 1-74
    Range of Eastern Longitudes 41-79, 51-99, 76-149

    Vertical Map Coordinates (north and south)

    Number of Coordinates (Map Height) 50, 80, 120
    Range 0-49, 0-79, 0-119
    North Pole 0, 0, 0
    Northern Polar Circle 8, 13, 20
    Northern Temperate Zone 12, 20, 30
    The Equator 25, 40, 60
    Southern Temperate Zone 37, 60, 90
    Southern Polar Circle 41, 66, 100
    South Pole 49, 79, 119

    Any distances required for Samson’s formulas will always end up being positive numbers. Since some of the horizontal calculations may be a bit confusing here are a few examples to go by (MC will be used as an abbreviation for the Civ II Horizontal Map Coordinates):

    Small Map Examples

    MC 31 is in the Western Hemisphere and its Longitude is 9 (40-31)
    MC 77 is in the Eastern Hemisphere and its Longitude is 37 (77-40)
    The Distance to the Mean Meridian for MC 31 is also 9 (40-31)
    The Distance to the Mean Meridian for MC 77 is also 37 (77-40)
    The Distance to the Dateline for MC 31 is 31 (31-0)
    The Distance to the Dateline for MC 77 is 3 (80-77)

    Medium Map Examples

    MC 31 is in the Western Hemisphere and its Longitude is 19 (50-31)
    MC 77 is in the Eastern Hemisphere and its Longitude is 27 (77-50)
    The Distance to the Mean Meridian for MC 31 is also 19 (50-31)
    The Distance to the Mean Meridian for MC 77 is also 27 (77-50)
    The Distance to the Dateline for MC 31 is 31 (31-0)
    The Distance to the Dateline for MC 77 is 23 (100-77)

    Large Map Examples

    MC 31 is in the Western Hemisphere and its Longitude is 44 (75-31)
    MC 77 is in the Eastern Hemisphere and its Longitude is 2 (77-75)
    The Distance to the Mean Meridian for MC 31 is also 44 (75-31)
    The Distance to the Mean Meridian for MC 77 is also 2 (77-75)
    The Distance to the Dateline for MC 31 is 31 (31-0)
    The Distance to the Dateline for MC 77 is 73 (150-77)

    With these preliminaries out of the way we can load up the save “wild” and inspect Rome. A right click on the city reveals its map coordinates which are (18,12). From the last section we already know that the wildcards for Rome are, so let’s continue by counting up the terrain features in Rome needed for the calculations:

    Ocean = 9 + 2 fish = 17
    Grassland = 4
    Plains = 3
    Hills = 1 + 2 wine = 9
    Rivers = 3
    Roads = 6
    Land = 10

    Note that each fish counts as 4 ocean and each wine counts as 4 hills, and that the Land count ignores the extra amounts provided by specials. Rivers are counted in addition to their underlying terrain. From the save we can also collect the rest of the information we will need for the making the calculations:

    Tech total is 32 (31 plus the one being learned)
    Known techs affecting commodities: Iron Working, Chemistry, and Economics

    Improvements affecting commodities: aqueduct, marketplace and bank

    Number of citizens in Rome: 21

    Continent Number: 1 (displayed to the right of Rome’s map coordinates)

    City Number: 1 (from “Find City” list, Rome is first)


    • #17
      Trade (cont)

      2.6.12 Predicting Commodity Supply and Demand Lists (cont)

      Now let’s figure out the Supply Quotients and Demand Quotients for each commodity. For the supply and demand of each commodity I will provide a copy of Samson’s formula followed by the calculations that were needed when using it.


      Supply = Forest x 4 + Tundra x 6 + Glacier x 6 + Jungle x 3 + Rivers x 3
      Location: N/A
      Techs: N/A
      # of Techs 1-15: 4x 16-23: 2x 24-48: 1x >48: 1/2
      City Size 1-2: 2x 3-7: 1x >7: 1/2

      Special Note: If Techs>48 the 2X bonus for Size<3 does not apply.

      Supply = 0x4 + 0x6 + 0x6 + 0x3 + 3x3 = 9
      # Techs 9x1 = 9
      City Size 9/2 = 4

      SQ for hides = 4

      Demand = Forest + Mountains x 2 + Tundra x 5 + Glacier x 5
      Location: + DistanceToEquator x 3/2
      Techs: Industrialization: 1/3 Mass Production: eliminates demand
      # of Techs: 1-9: 4x 10-19: 2x 20-47: 1x >47: 1/2
      City Size: 1-2 2x

      Demand = 0 + 0x2 + 0x5 + 0x5 = 0
      Location 0 + 28 x 3/2 = 42
      # techs 42x1 = 42

      DQ for hides = 42

      Hides goes into the Demand Roster with a DQ of 42


      Supply = (Grass + Hills x 2 + Rivers/2 ) x (Tundra + Glacier + 2 + PolarCircle)
      # of Techs:
      City Size:

      Supply = (4 + 9x2 + 3/2) x (0 + 0 + 2 + 1) = 69

      SQ for wool = 69

      Demand = Plains x 2 + Forest
      Location: + TemperateZoneOffset x 2
      Techs: Industrialization: 2x
      # of Techs:
      City Size:

      Demand = 3x2 + 0 = 6
      Location 6 + 8x2 = 22

      DQ for wool = 22

      Wool goes into the Supply Roster with a SQ of 69


      Supply = Ocean x 8
      Location: - DistanceToEquator
      Techs: none
      # of Techs: >32: 1/2
      CitySize: 1-9: 1x >9: ˝

      Supply = 17x8 = 136
      Location: 136 – 28 = 108
      CitySize: 108/2 = 54

      SQ for beads = 54

      Demand = Land x 3/2
      Location: + DistanceToEquator
      Techs: none
      # of Techs: >47: 1/2
      CitySize: 1-3: 3/2 4-12: 1x >12: ˝

      Demand = 10 x 3/2 = 15
      Location: 15 + 28 = 43
      CitySize: 43/2 = 21

      DQ for beads = 21

      Beads goes into the Supply Roster with an SQ of 54

      (Notice that the SQ of beads will drop to 27 very soon, since we already have 32 techs)


      Supply = Desert + Plains x 3 - Rivers
      Techs: Industrialization: x 3/2
      # of Techs: 1-7: 1/4 8-15: 1/2 16-19: 1x >19: 2x

      Supply = 0 + 3x3 – 3 = 6
      # techs: 6 x 2 = 12

      SQ for cloth = 12

      Demand = Forest x 4 + Hills x 4
      Special: + ( (Techs/10) x (Forest + Mountains x 2 + Tundra x 5 + Glacier x 5 + DistanceToEquator x 3/2) ) / 8

      Demand = 0x4 + 9x4 = 36
      Special: 36 + ((32/10) x (0 + 0x2 + 0x5 + 0x5 + 28x3/2))/8 = 51

      DQ for cloth = 51

      Cloth goes into the Demand Roster with a DQ of 51


      Supply = Desert x 4 + Swamp x 2 + Ocean x 3
      # of Techs: - Techs/6
      Continent#: 1,3,5: x 3/2
      Techs: Pottery, if not discovered: 1/3
      City Improvements: Aqueduct: x 3/2

      Supply = 0x4 + 0x2 + 17x3 = 51
      # techs: 51 – 32/6 = 46
      Continent#: 46 x 3/2 = 69
      Techs: 69/3 = 23
      City Improvements: 23 x 3/2 = 34

      SQ for salt = 34

      Demand =
      # of Techs: - Techs/2
      CitySize: 1-5: + pop x 8 6-10: + pop x 4 11-15: + pop x 2 16-20: + pop x 1 >20: +75

      Special Note: The first five citizens each demand 8 salt, the next five demand 4 salt, the next five 2 salt and the fourth group of five demand 1 salt. Size-based demand maxes out at 75.

      # techs: - 32/2 = -16
      CitySize: -16 + 75 = 59

      DQ for salt = 59

      Salt goes onto the Demand Roster with a DQ of 59

      Notice that salt would have been on the Supply Roster if Pottery had been acquired.


      Supply = (Plains + Forest + Swamp + Jungle +1) x (Hills x 5)
      Continent#: If ODD and >1: x 3/2
      # of Techs: <20: 1/2
      City Size: 1-7: 1/2 8-17: 1x >17: 2x

      Supply = (3 + 0 + 0 + 0 + 1) x (9x5) = 180
      City Size: 180x2 = 360

      SQ for coal = 360

      Demand =
      Location: (DistanceToEquator + 10) x (CitySize+2)/5
      # of Techs: + Techs
      CitySize: 1-4: Demand = 0 5-7: 1/2x >7: 1x
      Techs: Industrialization: 2x Electricity: 2x
      City Improvements: PowerPlant: 2x NuclearPlant, HydroPlant, SolarPlant: 1/ 8

      Special Note: CitySize has two affects in this formula: once as a multiplier of the location factor and later, after # of Techs has been added, a penalty is applied to smaller cities.

      Location: (28+10) x (21+2)/5 = 152
      # techs: 152 + 32 = 184
      CitySize: 184x1 = 184

      DQ for coal = 184

      Coal goes onto the Supply Roster with a SQ of 360

      Coal is almost always a factor on the SSC lists, first being in supply and later being in demand.


      Supply = Hills x 5 + Mountains x 5
      Continent#: If EVEN: 2x

      Supply = 9x5 + 0x5 = 45

      SQ for copper = 45

      Demand = Rivers + Roads
      Techs: Electricity: 3/2 Computers: 1/4
      CitySize: 1-2: Demand = 0 3-4: 1/2 5-7: 1x 8-12: 2x 13-17: 3x
      18-22: 4x ... etc.
      City Improvements: Marketplace: x 3/2 Bank: x 3/2

      Special Note: The formula for Copper Demand is theoretical, as there appears to be a serious bug in all versions of Civ2 with regards to the demand of both Copper and Dye.

      On 2.4.2, the formula as given is valid only when the city's Supply and Demand lists are updated by a caravan delivery. When the update is caused by viewing the City Display on that city's 16-year turn, the Base Demand is Rivers + Roads + City#. When the update is caused by the 16-year automatic update, then Copper's DQ is a LARGE NUMBER.

      On the Gold Edition, the formula as given is valid only when the city's update is caused by the 16-year automatic update. Both caravan deliveries and City Displays during the 16-year turn cause the DQ to be set to a VERY LARGE NUMBER.

      Formula to use is: Demand = Rivers + Roads + City#

      Demand = 3 + 6 + 1 = 10

      DQ for copper is 10

      Copper goes onto the Supply Roster with a SQ of 45


      Supply = Grass x 10 + Rivers x 2 - Plains x 2
      Continent#: If multiple of 4: 2x

      Supply = 4x10 + 3x2 – 3x2 = 40

      SQ for Dye = 40

      Demand = SupplyOf(Cloth) + Roads
      Techs: Chemistry: 1/2 Mass Production: 1/2

      Special Note: See the note for Copper Demand. The same bug affects the demand of Dye. The common factor in both formulas appears to be "Roads".

      Demand = 12 + 3 = 15

      DQ for dye = 15

      Dye goes onto the Supply Roster with a SQ of 40


      Supply = LesserOf (Plains x 4, Rivers x 5 - Grass)
      Location: +DistanceToDateline/4 If NorthernHemisphere: x 2
      Continent#: If RemainderOf(Continent# /4 ) = 2: x 3/2
      CitySize: 1-2: 1/2 8-10: 2x
      Civ: If FRENCH: 2x

      Supply = LesserOf (3x4, 3x5 – 4) = 11
      Location: 11 + 18/4 = 15 x 2 = 30

      SQ for wine = 30

      Demand = 0
      Location: + | Horizontal - Vertical |
      CitySize: 1-2: +4 3-7: +8 8-12: +12 13-17: +16 18-22: +20 23-27: +24 28-32: +28 etc.

      Location: + | 18 – 12 | = 6
      CitySize: 6 + 20 = 26

      DQ for wine = 26

      Wine goes onto the Supply Roster with a SQ of 30


      Supply = (Forest x 2 + Jungle + 1) x (Hills + 1)
      Location: + LongitudeEast x 2
      Continent#: Multiple of 5: 2x
      Civ: If CHINESE: 2x

      Supply = (0x2 + 0 + 1) x (9 + 1) = 10

      SQ for silk = 10

      Demand = Desert x 4 + Plains/2 + Swamp x 2 + Jungle x 4
      Location: + DistanceToPole x 2 + DistanceToDateline
      Continent#: If Continent = 1 AND CityNumber/2 is ODD: x 3/2
      # of Techs:
      CitySize: 1-2: 1/4 3-6: 1/2 7: 1x >7: 2x

      Demand = 0x4 + 3/2 + 0x2 + 0x4 = 1
      Location: 1 + 12x2 = 25 + 18 = 43
      CitySize: 43x2 = 86

      DQ for silk = 86


      Supply = Mountains x 8 + Hills
      Location: If NON-ZERO: + DistanceToMeanMeridian
      Continent: >8: 3/2
      Techs: If Iron Working not discovered, 1/2
      # of Techs:
      City Size: 1-4: ˝

      Supply = 0x8 + 9
      Location: 9 + 32 = 41

      SQ for silver = 41

      Demand = CitySize x 8
      Location: RemainderOf( (Horizontal + Vertical) / 3): 0 = silver, 1 = gems, 2 = gold
      Techs: Chemistry: x 3/2 Economics: 1/2 Computers: 1/2
      Civ: If SPANISH: 2x
      City Improvements: Bank: x 3/2 Cathedral: x 3/2

      Special Note: The Demand Quotients for Gems and Gold use the same formula as Silver. The remainder from the division by 3 of the sum of the city's map coordinates determines which commodity the formula is applied to. All cities demand Silver as CitySize x 8, but the Tech modifiers only apply to Silver if the location is 0 mod3. If the location is 1 mod3, the city demands Gems at the full formula rate. If the location is 2 mod3, the city demands Gold at the full formula rate.

      Demand = 21x8 = 168
      Location: RemainderOf((18+12)/3) = 0 silver, so proceed
      Techs: 168/2 = 84
      City Improvements: 84 x 3/2 = 126

      DQ for silver is 126

      Silver goes onto the Demand Roster with a DQ of 126


      Supply = (Desert + Swamp + Jungle x 3/2 ) x (Ocean + Rivers)
      Location: DistanceToEquator < 10: 2x; - DistanceToEquator
      Continent#: 1: 1/2
      ContinentSize: <26: 2x >300 ˝

      Supply = (0 + 0 + 0x3/2) x (17 + 3) = 0
      Location: 0 – 28 = -28
      Continent#: -28/2 = -14
      ContinentSize: -14/2 = -7

      SQ for spice = -7

      Demand = ContinentSize/10
      Location: If ContinentSize > 400 and (Horizontal + Vertical) /2 is EVEN: demand is zero
      Techs: Refrigeration: 1/2
      CitySize: < 4: 1/2 5-7: 1x >7: 2x

      Demand = 350/10 = 35 (This is an estimate)
      CitySize: 25x2 = 70

      DQ for spice = 70

      Spice goes onto the Demand Roster with a DQ of 70 (amended to 35)

      (Later on, when I was making up the lists, I discovered that with this DQ, spice should have appeared in the place of salt on the demand list, but it didn’t, so I have concluded that something is incorrect about the demand formula for spice. A glitch like this is not unlikely, because it is hard to track and account for every possible variable that determines spice demand. Spice also gave Samson and myself a lot of trouble when he was trying to develop a formula for it. After conducting some tests, by altering terrain, city size, etc. and seeing the effects of doing this on the demand list for Rome, I have concluded that the actual DQ for Spice must be lower than that of salt. Spice’s DQ is probably 35, and it might even be zero. The fact that there are not any other spice demanders on continent #1 and that this continent often gets special treatment as it does for spice supply, adds credence to my conclusion that spice should not have a DQ of 70. It is too bad Samson is absent, as he was much more adept at zeroing in on problems like this. For now, I will assign spice to the demand roster with a DQ of 35).


      Supply = (Desert +1) x (Mountains + 1) x (Swamp + 1) + Plains
      Continent#: 7: 3/2 x
      # of Techs:
      CitySize: 1-7: 1/2 8-12: 1x 13-17: 3/2 >17: 2x

      Supply = 0+1 x 0+1 x 0+1 + 3 = 3
      CitySize: 3 x 2 = 6

      SQ for gems = 6

      Demand: See Silver

      Demand = 0

      DQ for gems = 0

      Gems goes onto the Supply Roster with a SQ of 6


      Supply = (Mountains x 2 + Hills + 2) x (Rivers +2)
      Terrain: If Mountains < 3: 1/2
      # of Techs:
      CitySize: 1-4: 1x 5-9: 2x >9: 4x

      Supply = (0x2 + 9 + 2) x (3 + 2) = 55
      Terrain: 55/2 = 27
      CitySize: 27 x 4 = 108

      SQ for gold = 108

      Demand: See Silver

      Demand = 0

      DQ for gold = 0

      Gold goes onto the Supply Roster with a SQ of 108


      Supply = Desert x 10 + Tundra x 8 + Glacier x 8 + Swamp x 6
      Continent#: 9: x 3/2
      Techs: If Combustion NOT discovered by anyone: 1/8
      # of Techs:
      CitySize: >37: 2x

      Supply = 0x10 + 0x8 + 0x8 + 0x6 = 0

      SQ for oil = 0

      Demand = 0
      Techs: Enabled by Industrialization; Automobile: 3x
      # of Techs: + Techs/6
      CitySize: 1-2: 1/2x 3-4: 3/4x 5-7: 3/2x 8-9: 2x 10-12: 4x 13-17: 5 x 18-19: 6x 20-22: 12x 23-27: 14x 28-32: 16x 33-37: 18x 38-42: 20x
      CityImprovements: Factory: 3/2x Superhighways: 2x Mass Transit: 1/2x Recycling Center: 1/2x

      Special Note: Oil can appear as both a demand and supply wildcard after Industrialization if the regular wildcard is not expressed.

      DQ for oil = None

      Oil goes on the Supply Roster with a SQ of 0


      Supply = (Desert + Tundra + Glacier + 1) x (Mountains + 1) x (Hills + Rivers + 1)
      Techs: Enabled by Nuclear Fission
      # of Techs:
      CitySize: 1-2: x0 3-7: 1/6 8-12: 1/3 13-17: 1/2 18-22: 2/3 23-27: 5/6 27> 1x

      SQ for uranium = None

      Demand = 0
      Techs: Enabled by Nuclear Fission
      # of Techs: + #Techs squared
      CitySize: 1-2: 1/8 3-7: 1/4 8-12: 1/2 >12: 1x
      City Improvements: Nuclear Plant: 2x SDI: 2x

      Special Note: Uranium can appear as a demand wildcard after Nuclear Fission if the regular wildcard is not expressed

      DQ for Uranium = None

      No roster appearances yet for uranium.

      Here is a summary for each commodity with its SQ and DQ. The quotient in boldface indicates which roster the commodity was assigned to:

      Hides 4, 42
      Wool 69, 22
      Beads 54, 21
      Cloth 12, 51
      Salt 34, 59
      Coal 360, 184
      Copper 45, 10
      Dye 40, 15
      Wine 30, 26
      Silk 10, 86
      Silver 41, 126
      Spice -7, 35
      Gems 6, 0
      Gold 108, 0
      Oil 0, -
      Uranium -, -

      Now the commodities having the three highest quotients in their rosters can be assigned to the supply and demand lists:

      Supplies: Coal (360), Gold (108), Wool (69)
      Demands: Silver (126), Silk (86), Salt (59)

      Now let’s apply the first set of wildcards, which were calculated in the previous section about wildcard commodities. The supply wildcard is silver, but since silver appears on the demand list silver will not be used as a wildcard and will not be placed in the middle position of the supply list. The demand wildcard is beads, and since beads do not appear on either list, it is used as a wildcard and will be placed in the middle position of the demand list, covering silk. So, before the supply and demand lists are updated to reflect the new tech total of 32, the lists will look like this:

      Supplies: Coal, Gold, Wool
      Demands: Silver, Beads, Salt

      If Rome’s city display in the save is checked, you can see that the lists have these commodities. Now let’s apply the second set of wildcards, which were also calculated in the previous section about wildcard commodities. The supply wildcard is wine, and since wine does not appear on either list, it will be used as a wildcard and will be placed in the middle position of the supply list. The same is true for spice, the demand wildcard, which will go into the middle spot of the demand list. (Please note that this placement of the spice wildcard has nothing to do with the problems I encountered while calculating spice’s DQ). After applying these wildcards, the lists will look like this:

      Supplies: Coal, Wine, Wool
      Demands: Silver, Spice, Salt

      Now if the coal caravan in the game is delivered to Samarkand, Rome’s lists will updated to reflect the switch to the second set of wildcards, which were enabled by the new tech total of 32. After the caravan is delivered, Rome can be inspected and it can be seen that the lists have the commodities which were predicted by the formulas.

      After making these calculations in my own game, I also took note of how coming events would alter the SQ’s and DQ’s of each commodity as the game progressed, and changes to lists that I anticipated did occur right on schedule. The formulas may not be 100% reliable yet, but using them can improve anyone’s management of commodity supply and demand.


      • #18
        Trade (cont)

        2.6.13 Manipulating Commodity Supply and Demand

        Whenever commodities are built and traded, commodity supply and demand becomes blocked for the cities involved. An exception is the commodity hides, which is immune to being blocked, probably due to a bug in the game. However, hides are only one of 16 commodities present in the game, and sooner or later enough trades might be made that cities are unable to build new caravans because their supplies are blocked, or are unable to collect delivery demand bonuses for the same reason, demand in the target city has become blocked. Fortunately, there are several unblocking techniques that can be used to keep profitable trading going, and these will be detailed in this section. In addition, more details will be provided about the mechanics of city cycle turns and about the copper and dye bugs.

        Attached at the end of this section is a zip file containing several saves from Civ II games, which you can load and use in order to follow the examples as they are being discussed. It helps to actually use these techniques a few times to get an understanding of how and when they should be used. These saves have been given the creative names “blocked”, “bugged”, “food”, “goose”, “resupply”, “tricky” and “wonder”. Thanks are due to Scouse Gits(2), a regular participant in our comparison games, who was kind enough to provide the save I have renamed “bugged”.

        First, I’ll review a few basics about commodity trades. When a city (source) delivers a caravan or freight to another city (destination) already having three trade routes, one of the old routes in the destination city’s display will be replaced by the source city’s route if the source city’s base trade exceeds that of one of the three cities appearing among the routes. The first trade route city is checked first, and so on down the list, to see if a swap can be made. If the base trade of the source city is not high enough, none of the three existing routes will be changed. (The base trade of any city is determined by subtracting the number of trade arrows generated by its trade routes from its total number of trade arrows.)

        Now for some specific examples: If you load resupply and take a look inside Chicago, you will see:

        Supplies: (gold), (oil), (beads)
        Demands: (oil), spice, silk
        Paris beads: +18t
        Veii gems: +18t
        Rome Copper: +19t

        All supplies are currently blocked. The beads delivered to Paris earlier in the turn have replaced the first trade route. This delivery enabled the re-supply of beads, but a triggering event is needed to make this happen. If you deliver the Atlanta beads freight to Chicago, the display will change as follows:

        Supplies: (gold), (oil), beads
        Demands: oil, spice, silk
        Atlanta oil: +9t or Atlanta gold: +9t
        Veii gems: +18t
        Rome copper: +19t

        Since the Paris beads route was replaced after Atlanta’s delivery, beads was unblocked and can be built in Chicago the following turn. I think most players are aware of this basic unblocking technique. Whether gold or oil are assigned to the Atlanta route is determined by random, and if you reload resupply and repeat this delivery a few times, you will see this is true. Also note that this delivery unblocked the demand for oil in Chicago and this often happens when an undemanded commodity is delivered. The only negative aspect of this particular trade is that it only brought in 68 gold.

        Now save the game. If the silk freight, north of Chicago, is delivered next, no changes will occur in the display, and note that even though silk was in demand, the delivery did not block Chicago’s demand for silk. The reason for this is that the base trade in Detroit was only 6 trade arrows when the delivery was made, which was too small to allow Detroit to replace any of the existing routes. The important thing to notice and remember about this trade is that Detroit’s delivery did not block Chicago’s demand for silk.

        Now reload the save just made and go into Detroit. You’ll see that you can increase Detroit’s base trade from only 6 arrows up to 27 arrows by moving workers onto tiles having the best trade. After doing this, deliver the silk freight to Chicago. The result is:

        Supplies: (gold), (oil), (beads)
        Demands: oil, spice, (silk)
        Detroit beads: +10t
        Veii gems: +18t
        Rome copper: +19t

        Now Detroit’s base trade was higher than Atlanta, allowing Detroit’s route to replace Atlanta’s. Although this trade brought in a little more gold, it blocked the demand for silk and also re-blocked the supply for beads. This is a good example of what not to do, and of how the replacement of routes can act as a blocking mechanism.

        Now reload the temporary save a few more times, but before delivering the silk to Chicago, sell off the superhighways in Detroit just to see how much less gold the trade will bring. Finally, do this again, but sell off the superhighways in Detroit and Chicago before delivering silk, and you’ll see another substantial drop in revenue. Now you know why I like having superhighways everywhere.

        Now, reload the original save, named resupply. I’ll insert the original display of Chicago again, so you won’t have to scroll up:

        Supplies: (gold), (oil), (beads)
        Demands: (oil), spice, silk
        Paris beads: +18t
        Veii gems: +18t
        Rome Copper: +19t

        Before making any trades, go into Detroit and set its workers so that they generate enough trade to replace the Paris route. (More than 10 arrows will do, since this is the likely amount of base trade in Paris. Paris probably has 2 arrows each, for the 5 workers on roads, and no more for the two working its mines, making a total of 10.)

        Now save the game, and afterwards, skip over Atlanta’s freight and deliver the silk freight from Detroit to Chicago first. There are three possible results of this trade:

        Supplies: (gold), (oil), beads
        Demands: oil, spice, (silk)
        Detroit oil: +10t or Detroit gold: +10t
        Veii gems: +18t
        Rome Copper: +19t


        Supplies: (gold), (oil), (beads)
        Demands: oil, spice, (silk)
        Detroit beads: +10t
        Veii gems: +18t
        Rome Copper: +19t

        Whether gold, oil or beads are assigned to Detroit when its new route was created is determined by chance, and if you reload and re-deliver this silk freight enough times, you will eventually get all three results above. Notice that there is a 66% chance of unblocking beads by making this trade, and also note that it always blocks Chicago’s demand for silk. If you had another silk caravan coming into Chicago, you could unblock the demand in Chicago for silk now by delivering Atlanta’s freight. Go ahead and try this now, if you want to see. Furthermore, if beads had been assigned to Detroit after making its silk delivery, the subsequent delivery of Atlanta’s freight would have also unblocked Chicago’s supply of beads. This can be seen by loading the save named blocked and delivering Atlanta’s freight. The displays before and after this trade will be:

        Supplies: (gold), (oil), (beads)
        Demands: oil, spice, (silk)
        Detroit beads: +10t
        Veii gems: +18t
        Rome Copper: +19t

        Supplies: (gold), (oil), beads
        Demands: oil, spice, silk
        Atlanta oil: +9t
        Veii gems: +18t
        Rome Copper: +19t

        The delivery of undemanded beads from Atlanta unblocked the supply for beads and unblocked the demand for silk in Chicago.

        In my actual game, I wanted the big payoff for delivering demanded silk and also wanted to unblock the supply of beads in Chicago, so I traded the Detroit freight first, since the odds were in my favor this trade would unblock the supply of beads. It did, but had I been unlucky, I had the Atlanta freight standing by just in case, to deliver afterwards, just to make sure beads became available for Chicago’s next build. Had I another silk caravan coming into Chicago the following turn, I could have created demand for it by delivering Atlanta’s freight, too.

        For the next example, load the save named tricky, and inspect Chicago. Its display should be:

        Supplies: (gold), (oil), (beads)
        Demands: uranium, spice, (coal)
        St. Louis oil: +11t
        Veii gems: +18t
        Rome copper: 19t

        Now deliver the oil freight from Detroit. You will see that only one change occurred in the display. The Veii trade route was replaced by a new Detroit one:

        Detroit gold: + 11t or Detroit beads: +11t

        has taken the place of Veii gems: +18t

        Also note that since gems does not appear on the supply list it can not become unblocked or become available for the next build in Chicago. The reason Detroit replaced the Veii route was because Detroit had more base trade than Veii, but could not surpass the base trade of St. Louis. However, if we could get Detroit to replace St. Louis instead, this would unblock Chicago’s supply of oil, which is what we would rather do.

        Since Detroit’s base trade is as high as we can make it, we can work it the other way instead, by reducing the base trade in St. Louis temporarily, by making its wine worker into an entertainer. Doing this will reduce the base trade in St. Louis to 24 (50 – 26) from its original value of 33 (62 – 29). Since Detroit’s base trade is 33 (44 – 11), and it now exceeds that of St. Louis, the same delivery will result in:

        Supplies: (gold), oil, (beads)
        Demands: uranium, spice, (coal)
        Detroit beads: +11t or Detroit gold: +11t
        Veii gems: +18t
        Rome copper: +19t

        Since the oil delivered by Detroit was not in demand in Chicago, oil could not be assigned to Detroit’s route. This meant Chicago’s supply of oil was sure to become unblocked by this trade, as long as Detroit replaced St. Louis’s route. No harm was done to St. Louis, since its worker could be put back onto the wine after the delivery was made. Of course, one shouldn’t forget to do this. The only downside of this trade was that there was no demand bonus for making this oil delivery, but superhighways still ensured a decent payoff. The main purpose of the trade was accomplished, by providing Chicago with a fresh supply of oil.

        Now if you load the save named goose, an example will be given of how to get an AI city to become like that proverbial goose that lays golden eggs. In an earlier post, Orleans had been identified as a city having gold as a wildcard, and this was revealed and verified earlier in the game after a silver delivery to that city.

        In this save, the first gold freight from Chicago has arrived next Orleans, so go ahead and deliver it. Afterwards, you can see that Orleans still demands gold, and that it also desires beads now, another commodity Chicago supplies. Although Orleans is puny, and has minimal trade itself, its location, distance and demand choices are enough to give the SSC maximum payoffs whenever deliveries are made. Icing on the cake is the fact that Orleans is easy to access, so that these profitable deliveries can be made quickly, too.

        By now you may have noticed that other gold freight from Philadelphia parked next to Paris. If you go ahead and deliver this to Orleans, our golden goose, you will have cooked your own by blocking Orleans’ demand for gold. Hmmm. How come one trade blocks gold demand and the other made to the same city didn’t? It’s not a matter of trading order, for if you reload goose and deliver the gold from Philadelphia first, you will block the demand immediately, and this time you will be even worse off, since the gold standing by from Chicago is no longer wanted anywhere.

        The answer is found by looking at Chicago. Reload goose again and deliver Chicago's gold to Orleans, and then look inside Chicago. Orleans did not appear as a new trade route, and the reason for this is because its base trade is so puny that it hasn’t a chance of replacing any of the other cities making up the 3 routes. After a trade, the destination city must appear among the source city’s trade routes in order to block its demand for the commodity being delivered. Now if you deliver Philadelphia’s gold, you will notice that Orleans appears as a new route for that city, causing the demand in Orleans for gold to become blocked.

        This can all be verified by conducting the following experiment. Reload goose again, and check Chicago’s display:

        Supplies: (gold), (oil), (beads)
        Demands: uranium, spice, (coal)
        St. Louis beads: +11t
        Veii gems: +18t
        Rome copper: +19t

        Since St. Louis appears on the first trade route, go into that city and make all of its workers into entertainers, to make its base trade as low as possible. Now deliver the gold from Chicago to Orleans and you’ll see that the demand for gold in Orleans has been blocked. Checking back with Chicago’s display, you’ll see that a new route with Orleans has been created, replacing the St. Louis one.

        Now it should be obvious, that as long as you do not mess up demand in Orleans by making deliveries from other cities, it will keep demanding as much gold and beads that Chicago is able to deliver. Orleans’ base trade is so small, it will never be able to replace other cities making up Chicago’s trade routes. So if I knew this, why is the Philadelphia gold sitting next to Paris? For the moment, it ensures that the adjacent coal freight can reach Paris on the next turn, and not be blocked by a coy AI move of its phalanx onto the same RR tile. After I am sure my last gold freight from Chicago has been delivered to Orleans, I can finally cash in the Philadelphia gold, too, near the end of the game.

        In the example where St. Louis’s base trade was minimized, astute observers may wonder why the gold delivery from Chicago did not unblock beads on its supply list. After all, Orleans supplanted the St. Louis trade route. The reason is that there is still a Chicago beads freight on the map that has not been delivered yet.

        If you reload goose, deliver Chicago’s gold to Orleans and then space Philadelphia’s freight to end its turn, you’ll see that a beads from Chicago is waiting to be delivered to Buffalo. Making this delivery will free up a new supply of gold in Chicago. A new route for Buffalo appears in Chicago, taking place of the one previously held by Veii. Gold will also be re-supplied in Chicago, if you lower St. Louis’s base trade enough to have Buffalo replace its route instead. The reason gold was re-supplied is because when Chicago delivered gold to Orleans, a new trade route tied to gold was not created to replace one of Chicago’s 3 routes. It’s Orleans’ lack of base trade that makes such favorable manipulations possible.
        Attached Files


        • #19
          Trade (cont)

          2.6.13 Manipulating Commodity Supply and Demand (cont)

          There are also ways of using food caravans to unblock commodity supplies. One method I discovered makes use of the supply and demand list update that occurs in a city when the city contributes a food caravan to a wonder. This was dubbed as the “wonder bread” trick by Samson, and it has become invaluable in refreshing the supply of SSC commodities that do not create new trade routes when they are delivered. Following is an example of its use.

          If you load up the save named wonder and take a look at Boston’s city display, you’ll see:

          Supplies: (dye), (silver), (cloth)
          Demands: Uranium, (coal), copper
          Karakorum oil: +35t
          Karakorum cloth: +35t
          Rome silver: +21t

          You can see that all three supply commodities are blocked. Now if you go back outside and look at St. Louis, you’ll notice it’s building a wonder, accumulating shields towards the construction of the Apollo Program later. Now take Boston’s food freight and add it to the wonder being built. Then recheck Boston’s display. No changes. Hmm! Wonder bread didn’t work!

          The reason it did not work was because dye can not be re-supplied until Boston’s dye freight next to Hastings is delivered. Now reload the wonder save and deliver Boston’s dye freight to Hastings first. Now check Boston’s display. No changes, and the reason this delivery did not create a new trade route to replace one of the existing ones to Karakorum or Rome, is because both of these cities are size 8, and have most of their workers earning trade arrows, giving them more base trade than Hastings. Although delivered, dye did not replace any of the existing routes and went into what you might call a state of “limbo”.

          Well, to release dye from this purgatory, the wonder bread ploy must be used, so try it now, by adding Boston’s food freight to the wonder being built in St. Louis. Now check Boston’s display and you’ll see it has changed, with dye now in supply.

          Supplies: dye, (silver), (cloth)
          Demands: Uranium, (coal), copper
          Karakorum oil: +35t
          Karakorum cloth: +35t
          Rome silver: +21t

          After this new supply of dye is built and delivered, Boston can produce another food freight to keep this re-supply of dye going indefinitely, which is what I ended up doing during my game.

          Without the wonder bread ploy, my only option would have been to sit and hope something changed on the next cycle turn, but these turns are few and far between. It’s no good having all that trade potential and not being able to put it to constant use.

          Now you may ask what about silver and cloth. Why doesn’t wonder bread unblock either of these two? The reason is because they did not go into “limbo” when they were delivered. Cloth went to Karakorum and the silver went to Rome. To unblock either of these two, a trade would have to be made to a city with more base trade than one of these two, causing one of these trade routes to be replaced. I didn’t want to do this, because demand for dye was widespread. I also wanted to retain the lucrative Karakorum rail bonuses.

          Regular food deliveries can also be used to unblock supplies, too, and here comes an example of doing that. If you load the save named food and take a look inside San Francisco, one of the two colonies I set up in this game. It’s display should be:

          Supplies: (silk), (copper), (salt)
          Demands: uranium, wool, wine
          Boston copper: +9t
          Buffalo silk: +1t
          Boston salt: +9t

          Now if you take San Francisco’s food freight and deliver it to Boston, you’ll notice that the only change to Boston’s display was the increase in food, which is good, because we don’t want to disrupt any of its trade routes. Now check San Francisco, and you’ll see the following changes:

          Supplies: silk, (copper), (salt)
          Demands: uranium, wool, wine
          Boston copper: +9t
          Boston Food Supplies: -1f
          Boston salt: +9t

          Notice that this trade replaced the Buffalo trade route, causing a re-supply of silk. This is a good thing, but in this game I was more interested in getting a re-supply of copper, since copper was in demand in my SSC, and I could get more gold from a copper trade. I would rather replace the Boston copper route if I could with the new food route.

          This can be done by temporarily reducing Boston’s base trade until it is lower than Buffalo’s. You can do this by making all Boston city workers into entertainers. Try reloading this save and do this before delivering the food freight from San Francisco to Boston. After the food is delivered the display will change to:

          Supplies: (silk), copper, (salt)
          Demands: uranium, wool, wine
          Boston Food Supplies: -1f
          Buffalo silk: +1t
          Boston salt: +1t

          Since the base trade in Buffalo was higher than Boston’s, the Boston copper route was replaced, instead. Now San Francisco can produce and deliver another copper freight to Boston, which is what I wanted to do in this game.

          Now reload the save again and make all of Boston’s workers into entertainers. Instead of delivering the food to Boston, deliver it to another city instead. The result is the same, copper has been re-supplied. The food can be delivered to any city. What matters is which of San Francisco’s trade routes it replaces.

          Now reload and fix up Boston’s workers again to reduce its base trade. Use San Francisco’s food freight to help build the wonder in St. Louis, in attempt to use it like wonder bread. When you check back in San Francisco, you’ll see that this did not work, and all supplies are still blocked. The reason is because none of the blocked supplies were in “limbo”. Get the difference?

          So when dealing with food and re-supply it’s a good idea to:

          1. First, deliver what you want re-supplied before making any attempts to unblock it.

          2. Use wonder bread to unblock commodities that went into limbo when delivered.

          3. Use food deliveries to unblock visible trade route commodities.

          If used correctly, using food to re-supply commodities should always work. The only problem is that you have to take the extra time to build the food, and that you may end up wasting a valuable caravan or freight if its food can not be put to good use.


          • #20
            Trade (cont)

            2.6.13 Manipulating Commodity Supply and Demand (cont)

            Now the save bugged will be used to illustrate some ideas about city cycle turns and the copper and dye bug, so go ahead and load this save. I will assume you are using Civ version 2.42 while doing this. If not, and if your only version of the game is MGE, then you’ll have to just read this part and use MGE later, when I cover the examples using it. If you remember, the copper and dye bugs work differently in the two versions of Civ II, so it’s important to be using the same version. I’ll be discussing version 2.42 first.

            Using “Find City” you’ll notice that Ulundi, the SSC used in this game, was the 8th city founded during the game. While in “Find City”, also make a note that Madrid was the 6th city to be founded. Now check the game turn, which should be 400 AD. This just happens to be Ulundi’s city cycle turn, and this can be verified by counting ahead 7 turns… 420, 440, 460, 480, 500, 520, to 540, which is the city cycle turn of Zimbabwe, the first city founded during this game. If you check the list under the section describing city cycle turns, you’ll see that 540 AD is one of the ones used by the first city. We can also see that Madrid’s cycle turn is coming up two turns from now in 440 AD.

            First a reminder that the copper and dye bug results in an abnormally high demand quotient being assigned to copper and/or dye. Dye is usually affected first, earlier in the game, and then copper gains steam and moves even higher than dye. A result of this bug is that copper or dye will end up in the left hand position of the affected city’s demand list, because of its high Demand Quotient. If copper (or dye) had previously been on the supply list, or on another part of the demand list, its move to the left side of the demand list can shake up the positions of other commodities on one or both lists, too. This may end up being either good or bad, depending on which commodities you want to be trading with next. Sometimes you’ll want to purposely invoke the bug, and at other times want to cancel its affects.

            In 2.42, the copper and dye bug works like this. It is invoked by the city cycle turn’s automatic update. It can also be invoked by using the “SCG switch” on a city cycle turn, by temporarily lowering the city’s shield capacity to zero. The bug can be cancelled in two ways, too. One way is by inspecting the city on its cycle turn and the other is by establishing or replacing a trade route on any turn by using a caravan or freight delivery. Let’s use this save to verify these statements.

            First, and before looking at Ulundi (if you did already, please reload), check dye with the trade advisor. You’ll see that dye is in demand now in Ulundi. You can also check spice if you would like, which is now in supply there. Now you can take my word for it that dye was not in demand in Ulundi in 380, the previous turn, because it was actually in supply then. It was Ulundi’s city cycle update occurring at the beginning of this turn, which caused dye to move to the demand list. Since the trade advisor is always kept up to date, you can count on it being correct that dye is now in demand in Ulundi.

            Now look inside Ulundi. The very act of looking at a city during its cycle turn causes another update to occur, but this time you are watching, and this makes all the difference. In Ulundi, you’ll see the following display:

            Supplies: (dye), (wine), gems
            Demands: (coal), (silver), copper

            Looking at Ulundi has cancelled the dye bug, since dye has moved back to the supply list, where it was before. You can check with the trade advisor and will see that it has been updated to reflect this change.

            Now reload the save and this time just space each unit to end the 400 AD turn, but do not look inside Ulundi. Hit enter to start the next turn and then when it’s 420 AD, look inside Ulundi, and you’ll see:

            Supplies: (gold), (wine), spice
            Demands: dye, (coal), (silver)

            The dye bug is still in effect, because we didn’t look at Ulundi during its cycle turn. Now we see what we had confirmed with the trade advisor in 400 BC, dye is in demand and spice is in supply. When the dye bug was invoked during Ulundi’s cycle turn, dye moved from the supply list to the demand list. This caused gold to move out from under the wine wildcard to the left position of the supply list. Gems took gold’s place under wine, leaving room on the right for the newcomer, spice. On the demand list coal and silver got shoved to the right. (The demand wildcard is dye, by the way, and is not expressed here as a wildcard).

            Now the list will stay like this until we look at Ulundi again during its next cycle turn or until we create a new trade route for Ulundi, by delivering a caravan. If you move west a bit you’ll see that there’s a caravan from Ulundi, waiting outside of Madrid. Go ahead and deliver it, in order to cancel the dye bug. Then inspect Ulundi again to verify this:

            Supplies: (dye), (wine), gems
            Demands: coal, (silver), (silk)

            Dye has moved back to the supply list pushing gold under the wine wildcard and pushing gems back out to the right. Coal and silver have moved back to where they belong and silk has joined the demand list, taking the place of a “debugged” copper.

            Now we can illustrate how the “SCG Switch” invokes the dye bug. Reload the save, enter Ulundi and you’ll see:

            Supplies: (dye), (wine), gems
            Demands: (coal), (silver), copper

            Now set shields in Ulundi to zero by removing workers. You’ll also need to re-home that horseman to Ulundi. At zero shields you’ll see that the bug has been invoked again:

            Supplies: (gold), (wine), spice
            Demands: dye, copper, (coal)

            If you move a worker back and forth now, you can flip flop from bugged to not bugged. If you end this turn with shields at zero, the bugged list will stay there when the next turn starts, too.

            Now there’s one more thing here worth illustrating. Reload this save and look at Ulundi:

            Supplies: (dye), (wine), gems
            Demands: (coal), (silver), copper

            Now exit Ulundi and you’ll notice a settler on a forest tile ready for an order. This settler has actually been interrupted from irrigating that forest into plains just before he finished doing this, so he is “fully charged up”. If you give this settler the irrigate command, the tile will turn from forest to plains immediately. Go ahead and do this now. This terrain change happened to give gems a slightly better Supply Quotient, good enough to make it trade places with gold on the supply list. Look at Ulundi and you’ll see:

            Supplies: (dye), (wine), (gold)
            Demands: (coal), (silver), copper

            Gold has taken gem’s place. Now use the “SCG Switch” to invoke the copper/dye bug one more time and look at Ulundi now:

            Supplies: gems, (wine), spice
            Demands: copper, dye, (coal)

            This time copper has been “bugged” with dye right behind it, pushing coal all the way to the right on the demand list. Gems, with its “improved” SQ has moved to the left side of the supply list where dye used to be, gold has moved left underneath the wine wildcard, and spice has joined the supply list on the right.

            Now if you wait a turn before trying this with the settler, city looks or using the “SCG switch” will no longer do anything, because it is no longer Ulundi’s city cycle turn. That’s important to remember.

            Another thing to remember about the copper/dye bug in 2.42, is that since the AI never “look” at their cities, the bug is always invoked during their city cycle turns. If you reload the save one more time, we can demonstrate this by delivering the gold caravan to Madrid. After the delivery inspect Madrid’s demands, and they should be:

            spice, silk, (gold)

            Now space all units to end the 400 AD turn. Go to the next turn and finish that one the same way. Keep doing this until you reach 460 AD, the turn after Madrid’s city cycle turn, which is 440 AD. Now look at Madrid, and you’ll see:

            copper, coal, silk

            The copper bug has been invoked by Madrid’s cycle turn. Because the Spanish turn followed ours in 440 AD, we had to wait until 460 AD to see the result of Madrid’s automatic update that occurred in 440 AD.

            The bug can be cancelled in AI cities by delivering caravans to them, which cause an update to their lists. With this save you can try this by first looking at Panormus, which shows the following demands:

            dye, copper, silk

            Now deliver the beads caravan from Swazi and check Panormus:

            silk, hides, cloth

            Bye, bye, bug.

            Now in the MGE version of Civ II, the copper/dye bugs work in just the opposite way. They are invoked by looking at a city during its city cycle turn or by creating a new trade route by delivering a caravan or freight on any turn. The only way to cancel the bug in MGE is by not looking inside a city on its cycle turn. The “SCG switch” has no effect, because in order to try and use it you must enter the city display. Doing this invokes the bug anyways, making the “SCG Switch” redundant. The lack of methods for canceling the dye/copper bug in MGE makes it much more pervasive, especially in the human player’s cities. So there isn’t as much we can do in MGE, but we’ll do what we can.

            Go ahead and load the save using MGE. If you check with the trade advisor, you’ll see that Ulundi supplies spice and that Ulundi demands dye. Check copper also, and you’ll notice Ulundi does not demand copper. Now look inside Ulundi, and you’ll see that the look on this cycle turn has triggered the copper bug, since copper is now in the left hand slot of the demand list:

            Supplies: (gold), (wine), spice
            Demands: copper, dye, (coal)

            Now just to see the effect, use that settler to irrigate the forest and change it into plains, and re-check Ulundi:

            Supplies: gems, (wine), spice
            Demands: copper, dye, coal

            Just as in 2.42, the extra plains tile has improved the SQ of gems, allowing it to swap positions with gold, which is now under the wine wildcard. Getting back to the bug, now that we have instigated the copper bug, we are stuck with it until Ulundi’s next cycle turn. In MGE the copper/dye bug limits our ability to manipulate the demand lists in our own cities.

            Now reload and space all units to end the 400 AD turn and go to the next turn without looking at Ulundi. Now inspect the city and you’ll see:

            Supplies: (gold), (wine), spice
            Demands: dye, (coal), (silver)

            Notice that dye is bugged, but at least copper hasn’t joined the demand list yet. Now use that settler again to change the forest into plains and look at Ulundi and you’ll see that nothing has changed, and this is because city looks only update lists during cycle turns, and this is the turn after, 420 AD. To get gems to swap places with gold, deliver the gold caravan to Madrid again, and you’ll see that this trigger worked to update the list, but also reactivated the copper bug:

            Supplies: gems, (wine), spice
            Demands: copper, dye, coal

            Like a nasty virus, this bug is hard to shake in MGE. To conclude, let’s examine how the bug works with AI cities in MGE. Reload the save and check Madrid’s demand list:

            Spice, gold, silver

            Now deliver the gold caravan to Madrid, and check Madrid’s demands again:

            copper, (dye), spice

            Now let’s move ahead in the game two turns until we get to 460 AD, when we can view how Madrid’s city cycle turn affected its demand list:

            spice, coal, (gold)

            It’s back to normal. Since the AI never inspect their cities, the copper/dye bug stays cancelled after their city cycle turns until a caravan or freight is delivered by us. This allows a little more flexibility when dealing with them.

            One final trick I should mention is that if you use a diplomat or spy to investigate an AI city on its cycle turn, you can invoke the bug in MGE or cancel it in 2.42.

            Well, that about wraps up all the ways there are to “influence” commodity supply and demand. Thanks again to SG(2) for providing this save. While following these examples, you might have noticed that there are two other Ulundi caravans in transit, which makes this save an excellent one to use in practicing other unblocking techniques, as well as combining their use with the updates provided on Ulundi’s cycle turn by city looks or the bugging chances permitted with the SCG switch. It’s probably well worth experimenting with this until you get the hang of manipulating commodities to what you want them to be. With these techniques there is almost always a way of accomplishing what you most desire in regard to supply and demand. It’s also a lot more fun to be able to deliberately change lists than it is to just wait and hope they change the way you want them to.


            • #21
              2.7 Stages of Development

              This section will put all these pieces of strategy together by summarizing the different stages of an early landing game. The best way of adding meat to the skeleton provided here is to read the discussions accompanying the threads about early landing games and to study the detailed logs of the most successful games.

              2.7.1 The Opening

              In the beginning the first job is to get to a better form of government early. This means founding the first two cities quickly, to get research started and to get two more cities down as soon as possible right afterwards. In the beginning the quickest way to learn faster is by adding more cities. Favor sites having access to the ocean. This allows all cities to expand later using harbors and to contribute toward transporting freights by building transports.

              2.7.2 Early Expansion and Exploration

              Black clicking (right clicking on unexplored terrain and noting continent numbers displayed after coordinates in the status box) will tell you the size of your home continent and the location of other continents nearest to your own. If you start on anything but a small island, it pays to contact the AI as quickly as possible, so the first warrior should probably be used as an explorer. An early priority is locating the key civ, and if this is delayed, one should consider building Marco Polo’s Embassy.

              All other efforts should be towards laying down new cities and learning Monarchy or Republic so that more cities can be added sooner without increasing unhappiness.

              Once enough cities are in place and the SSC site is chosen, temples are the next priority, so that each city can stay happy at size three. An alternative to temples is building The Hanging Gardens in the SSC. After temples, diplomats and triremes are needed for exploration and defense. As cities approach size 4, settlers can be built to start building roads and to develop the SSC’s terrain.

              2.7.3 Early Trade and Colonization

              Once in Monarchy or Republic, trade is the next priority. The first few caravans built should be the best quality ones available which are in demand by the AI on a neighboring continent. A quick steam of deliveries will help boost early science and income substantially.

              As soon as a good location is found, at least one settler should be shipped out to start building colonies. There are so many things you want to do, that it will be hard to stay committed to early colonization, but for the best trade later on, this is a must. Another way of starting colonies is by buying them by bribing suitable AI cities using diplomats. Doing this can be quite cost effective and less time consuming than building colonies from scratch, and is less dangerous, too, since young colonies can be vulnerable to barbarian attacks.

              2.7.4 SSC Expansion and Development

              Just when carrying costs start to slow down research, the time comes to accelerate the development of the SSC. All efforts should go into completing the development of all SSC tiles and into the construction of SSC improvements and wonders. The SSC should be the first city to establish all three of its trade routes. If an AI civ is close enough, plans should include connecting to one or more of its cities via a station to get the bonus provided by three roaded trade routes. By the time one is ready to switch to Democracy the SSC should be size 21 and should have all wonders and scientific improvements in place.

              2.7.5 Helper and Colony Expansion

              As soon as sufficient cash is on hand to start rushing colosseums, helpers and colonies can be celebrated up to size 7 or 8 while the SSC continues up to its maximum size. It’s best to get this done before the discovery of Automobile, which allows superhighways, the best city improvement of them all. Try to build them in every city.

              2.7.6 Hyper Trade and Accelerated Research

              With full sized cities, a system of alternating trade should be developed quickly. Soon delivery beakers should be enough to afford the first advance on turns where two are possible. Income from freight deliveries will rush superhighways and scientific improvements in helpers and colonies to keep cities at the 1 tech per turn science level. Research will accelerate until the discovery of Space Flight is imminent.

              2.7.7 Space Ship Construction and the Launch

              A few turns before Space Flight is learned, cities can start selling off their improvements to provide more gold for building a space ship. Freights that can not earn more than 200 gold by being delivered should be saved to help build space ship parts. Freights can be added to wonders which can be converted into any of the SS parts without any penalties. Below is a list of the fastest ships, the first number being structurals, the second being components, and the third being the time it takes to arrive. All of these have one each of each module. Any ship that can be launched is guaranteed to arrive regardless of the percentages listed by the game.

              15, 2, 36.1
              15, 4, 21.0
              15, 6, 15.7
              17, 8, 13.2
              21, 10, 10.0
              25, 12, 8.3
              29, 14, 6.7
              33, 16, 5.7

              Remember that the game switches to 1 year increments for turns after a launch, so that a ship taking 15.7 years launched in 1200 will beat the 5.7 year ship launched on the following turn, 1220.

              Surprisingly, I’ve found that SS Structurals are the hardest to build even though they are the cheapest. That extra 30 shields needed beyond a caravan’s first 50 can be an extra 120 gold, and for 15 parts this can add up. Fortunately, quite a few transports and engineers will be available and should be disbanded to help in the construction of these parts. If planned right, everything will be needed and you will be down to about zero gold, when a ship is ready launch. If this is not the case, you might have been able to do so a turn or two earlier for a better date.

              2.7.8 Waiting to Land

              Just make sure your SSC and your Palace do not get captured. Then find a hobby.


              • #22
                3.0 A Sample Game and Log

                This section will provide the summary and log of my own game from the first Early Landing Comparison Game. At the end, a zip file will be attached, containing several saves made from various stages of that game, which interested players may download and inspect.

                Game Summary

                Republic – 1450 BC
                Democracy – 540 AD

                Shakespeare’s Theater – 200 BC
                The Colossus – 120 AD
                Copernicus’s Observatory – 420 AD
                Isaac Newton’s College – 540 AD
                Apollo Program – 1200 AD

                SSC size 8 – 75 BC
                SSC size 12 – 40 AD
                SSC size 21 – 260 AD
                Max. SSC size – 24

                Trade – 775 BC
                Invention – 440 AD
                Railroad – 640 AD
                Automobile – 920 AD
                Nuclear Power – 1040 AD
                Computers – 1100 AD
                Flight – 1120 AD
                Space Flight – 1180 AD

                Arrival Date – 1276 AD

                Early landing comparison game #1

                I landed in 1276 AD after a launch in 1240.

                BC years

                3950 Rome
                3850 Veii

                Rome was at the SSC site. Veii was at the coast at the end of the left hand river. The wine in Rome and the two rivers added some extra trade early, which helped speed up discoveries.

                3700 Alphabet, Rom – warrior
                3400 Rome – warrior

                Veii started with a settler. The plan was for one warrior from Rome to arrive in time to establish martial law before Veii reached size two. The earliest priority is 4 cities, so explorations must wait until this is done.

                3350 Code of Laws
                3100 Vei – settlers
                2900 Antium

                Antium was at the first location eastward along the coast from Veii that had a grassland city tile and access to a whale.

                2850 Writing

                Writing is on the way to early Republic, and it also permits diplomats, who are the best land units for early explorations.

                2800 Rome – settlers

                This settler will be used for the 4th city, and headed along the coast westward from Rome, looking for a good site.

                2650 Ant – warrior
                2450 Cumae, barb trireme appears next to Rome

                Cumae was on the coast and had a whale to work. Cumae was the 4th city and since 4 cities are the limit for Despotism, the remaining two helpers will be added when the switch is made to Republic. Libraries are being used to accumulate shields for temples until Ceremonial Burial is discovered.

                2400 Rome attacked

                Without much gold on hand, all I could do was sit tight and hope for the best. Rome survived an attack by a barb archer and its warrior became a veteran. The other barb archer headed off towards Veii and attacked it later. Veii’s warrior survived this with the help of the river’s defensive bonus.

                2300 Ceremonial Burial, Mongols discover Veii, Ceremonial Burial given on demand followed by a peace treaty.

                It was nice to have found the purple civ so early, but it was also too bad that it happened to be the volatile Mongols, who were looking for trouble. The fact that they were cornered by Roman cities did not augur well.

                2250 Vei – temple

                The first priority for helpers after making a settler for a new city is to produce a temple to control happiness now and especially a bit later, when the switch is made to early Republic. There is a temptation to use more martial law in the early going, but doing so makes the transition to Republic more difficult. Some players may opt for building the Hanging Gardens instead of using temples, but this plan has a few things working against it in early landing games. Pottery must be learned first, which is an off-path tech, and taking time to acquire it delays the switch to Republic. The HG expires fairly early with the discovery of Railroad, when temples will have to be built, anyways. Controlling helper happiness with luxuries during Republic, and later during Democracy, is not a good idea, either, as this reduces income considerably and can limit research capacity. A clinching argument for early temples is that there isn’t that much else to be doing before the discovery of Trade permits caravans.

                2200 Cma – warrior

                (I usually use just the first 3 letters of a city’s name when listing builds, but with Cumae this presents a slight conflict with the word choices permitted on these forums!)

                1950 Ant – temple
                1800 Literacy

                Monarchy must be skipped, of course, to reduce tech carrying costs. If acquired, its benefits would not be in effect long enough to make this a worth while plan. It’s better to get to Republic a few turns sooner.

                1500 Vei – settlers, Rom – temple
                1450 Republic, switch made, Mongols demand it, so it is given. Trade for Bronze Working.

                The Mongols also have The Wheel and Horseback Riding, but these will not be needed until later. Now that I’m in Republic, the discovery of Trade becomes a priority, and Bronze Working saves a step along the way. With knowledge of Republic, the Mongols also made the switch and became less menacing afterwards. Warriors that have not already been disbanded to help make temples are disbanded now to free up shields. Now that I have a tech lead, that is all that is needed to keep the AI peaceful, and diplomats can be built, when needed, to deal with barbarian appearances. All cities will be without defense until a space ship is launched, later. Doing this is not as risky as it may seem to those who are used to dealing more aggressively with the AI.

                1400 Cma – temple, Ant – settlers, Rome – settlers, Neapolis

                Neapolis was westward along the coast from Veii, and was a great location, being on a river and also having a rivered buffalo. The Rome settlers set to work improving the SSC site. After irrigating a grassland, one of the first jobs was to mine those hills having wine, to make the most out the citizens working those tiles.

                1250 Mysticism, Pompeii

                Mysticism came just in time since the early cities were reaching size 3. Pompeii was located along the coast, southeast of Antium, and had the fish and spice specials. It was also on a river. Having so many rivers around was a great boon to early research and transportation. The first few caravans produced made it to their destinations a lot quicker because of these handy rivers. Cumae was the only city lacking this advantage. Later on, not as many harbors were needed for helpers because of the extra trade and adequate food available from rivered grassland tiles.

                1000 Map Making

                Map Making is the last key tech needed before pushing on to the discoveries of Trade, Medicine and Sanitation. Now explorations can commence to find an early trading partner, so that the first caravans can be traded for some quick advances and for some extra gold to finance SSC development.

                950 Nea – temple, Cma – settlers

                Building a settlers in Cumae was a probably not the best thing to do, since this left Cumae lacking enough food to grow to size three, even if some time were taken for extra irrigation. A diplomat or trireme first would have been a better idea, but I was anxious to connect this city to Rome with a road quickly. After extending the road part way, I acknowledged my error and cut my losses by having this settler rejoin Cumae, to get it up to a more productive size 3.

                925 Vei – diplomat, Ant – trireme
                875 Currency
                850 Pom – temple, contact Aztecs, they demand a tech, I refuse, and they declare war.

                I know I have been recommending appeasement in earlier posts in this thread, but when the AI is on a separate continent, they do not pose an immediate threat, so a declaration of war does not present a problem. If they have useful techs to trade, they are more likely to do this when peace is established later and relations are on the rebound. However, in situations where a vulnerable caravan is standing by an AI city waiting to be delivered, or when an AI catapult or chariot arrives on the doorstep of a colony demanding Philosophy, appeasement is always the best choice. The AI could be bluffing, but there’s no point in denying their demands to find out they really wanted an excuse to start a war.

                775 Trade, Aztecs contacted, peace, trade for Masonry, give tech, share maps.

                During this exchange, I also found out that the Aztecs had acquired Monarchy and Warrior Code. With the exchange of maps, all of the target cities for early caravan deliveries were revealed.

                700 Nea – wine

                This will go to an Aztec city. For helpers such as Neapolis, the first commodity choice was the most valuable one in demand that could be delivered quickly. Wine was wanted by the Aztecs and has an excellent demand bonus.

                675 Philosophy, and the freebie is Construction, Aztecs – give tech, share maps; Mongols – trade for The Wheel, give tech, share maps

                It wasn’t until now that I had accumulated enough of a tech lead to work the Mongol attitude up to worshipful, in order to share maps. Earlier in the game, I only had enough techs to keep them appeased.

                650 Vei – wool, Cma – trireme
                625 Rom - copper

                The trireme built in Cumae headed to Rome. While there it would reveal the rest of the ocean tiles in Rome’s city radius and would be rehomed to that city, before heading back towards the Mongols with the copper caravan built in Rome.

                600 Ant – dye
                525 contact Chinese, peace, give tech, share maps

                The Chinese offer to trade Seafaring, which I will want to trade for later when a harbor is needed.

                500 Pom – settlers, Medicine, wool(d) to Tenochtitlan, 144g, wine(d) to Tlatelolco, 160g

                Finally, some gold to speed up Rome’s development. These deliveries also trigger the first 1 turn advance of the game. In my opinion, the onset of trade is the most significant milestone in an early landing game. Before trade, everything comes slowly and with difficulty. Afterwards, it’s just the reverse.

                475 Engineering, Rom – beads
                450 Nea – cloth, Cma – salt, copper(d) to Karakorum, 104g

                This is the first trade route for Rome, and more importantly, became one of the rail connection routes that were so useful later on, after a helper was added next to Rome as a “station”.

                425 Rom – wool
                400 Pisae

                Pisae was the first colony and had access to 2 whales and a buffalo. It was located east of the Aztec cities on their continent. Next to it was another excellent colony site, too.

                375 Ant – hides, Vei – dye, Sanitation, Rom – marketplace, dye(d) to Texcoco, 120g

                With Sanitation, all tech needed for SSC growth was in place, and all that was needed was Shakespeare’s Theater to get this going.

                300 contact Vikings, they demand a tech, war; Mongols, give tech, share maps
                275 Vei – hides, Banking
                250 Cma – beads
                225 Ant – settlers, Rom – food, contact English, trade for Iron Working, give tech, share maps; Chinese – trade for Seafaring

                200 Nea – cloth, Rom – Shakepeare’s Theater, we love commences, beads(d) to Tlatelolco, 240g

                175 Pom – settlers
                150 Rom – harbor
                125 Pis – settlers, Mongols – give tech, share maps; Vikings, peace, give tech, share maps
                100 Vei – dye, Rom – aqueduct, Mathematics, English – give tech, share maps; beads(d) to Texcoco, 328g; barb horseman bribed, 41g

                75 contact Zulus, they demand gold, war
                50 Cma – dye, Rom – bank, Zulus – peace, give tech, share maps

                I guess the Zulus didn’t really mean to start a war. Another AI inanity is that they often will make peace the turn after declaring war! With a marketplace and bank in Rome, it will start to be earning extra gold coins every turn. These improvements allow the celebration to continue with a lower luxury setting, too, allowing faster research.
                Attached Files


                • #23
                  3.0 A Sample Game and Log (cont)

                  AD years

                  1 Nea – coal
                  20 Bridge Building

                  Normally I wait on this one, since the odds are good an AI will learn it in time for a trade, but all those rivers needed bridges. I had thought that this tech among many others would be available through trade from the AI in this game, because we had no free techs at the start and because the AI were likely to tip more huts for techs. However, this did not happen in my own game, where I only got the usual number of techs from the AI via trades.

                  40 beads(d) to Tenochtitlan, 280g
                  60 Ant – wool, Rom – coal
                  100 Rom – sewer system
                  120 Pom – beads, University, Cma – dye, Rom – Colossus, dye(d) to Tlatelolco, 216g; Zulus, Vikings, English – give tech, share maps

                  One of the AI almost beat me to building the Colossus wonder.

                  140 Vei – hides
                  160 Pis – temple, Nea – cloth, Rom – library
                  180 Astronomy, beads(d) to Tlaxcala, 96g, wool(d) to Tlaxcala, 120g
                  220 Pis – beads
                  260 Economics, Rom – size 21, we love ends
                  280 Cma – salt, Ant – coal, Vei – hides, Rom – gold
                  300 Nea – coal, Rom – coal
                  320 Theory of Gravity, beads(d) to Rome, 420g

                  This was the first colony delivery back to Rome, and it pays off big time.

                  360 Ant – food, Rom – university, Ravenna

                  Ravenna was the second colony and was founded next to Pisae, the first. Unfortunately, while Pisae’s settler was making roads and preparing for Ravenna, the Aztecs snuck in with a settler and founded a city of their own close by, which made it a tight fit for Ravenna. The Aztec city hogged some of the best river tiles in the area, so a harbor for Ravenna became a necessity. However, this city was easy to reach when quick trades had to be made, so its presence was also somewhat beneficial.

                  380 Pom – wine, Chemistry, Mongols – give tech, share maps, gold(d) to Samarkand, 462g

                  Now another route to a Mongol city had been established with Rome in preparation for the rail trade route bonus later on.

                  400 Rom – stock exchange, dye(d) to Tenochtitlan, 296g, hides(d) to Tlaxcala, 144g
                  420 Rav – beads, Navigation, Pom – salt, Nea – coal, Cma – salt, Ant – coal, Vei – hides, Rom – Copernicus’s Observatory

                  440 Pis – salt, Invention

                  So much for good caravan payoffs. Now it’s a race to Democracy, and on to Corporation quickly in order to get trade going full tilt again.

                  460 Rav – harbor, Vei – hides, Rom – food
                  480 Democracy, Mongols, give tech, share maps, coal(d) to Samarkand, 195g

                  I just missed the 460 oedo year for switching governments, which was too bad, since if this can be timed correctly, a turn of research will not be wasted with a revolution when changing governments.

                  500 Rav – temple, Rom – wool
                  520 Rom – wine, Physics, revolution

                  At this time I was learning my 32nd tech, which is when the commodity wildcards for cities change. This introduced some new commodities in Rome at just the right time. Previously, three trade routes had been established with two Mongol cities, which were “sticking”, since these Mongol cities had excellent base trade. This meant that “wonder bread” could be used when newer commodities were delivered from Rome, since the Mongol trade routes were not being replaced. It also meant that deliveries made to Rome would not block commodities that it was demanding.

                  At this point, a break was taken to figure out which commodities Rome would be supplying and demanding once it was fully developed and after certain techs affecting supply and demand were acquired, and it was determined that Rome would be supplying wine and dye, but that if Pottery were acquired, salt would take the place of dye. I wanted to supply dye, so put off trading for Pottery until the end of the game, saving that trade to reset the tech list. I also determined that Rome would be demanding coal, oil and spice later on, but that when Nuclear Fission was discovered, this would mask the desire for coal.

                  So the next step was to figure out the demand wildcards for each of the AI cities, in an attempt to find matches for what the SSC would be trading. Supply wildcards of bribable AI cities were also checked to see if any would be suppliers of coal, oil, and spice. I discovered that it would serve me best to keep the Aztec tech total below 32, since this would keep up a good and repeatable demand for wine in Tlatelolco. I also noticed that Isandhlwana, a Zulu size three city, would become a good supplier of spice, which Rome wanted. Its coastal location provided easy access to other Zulu inland cities, too, so when the time was right, I sent in a diplomat to incite a revolt.

                  540 Rom – Sir Isaac Newton’s College, switch to Democracy, salt(d) to Rome, 234g

                  The salt came from the first colony, Pisae, which had reached size 3 and had enough trade to displace a Mongol trade route. Doing this unblocked the supply of coal in Rome.

                  Now that Rome was fully developed, helpers could turn to making harbors and colosseums, to get ready for their own growth. They had already begun on this after enough caravans had been made for Sir Isaac’s.

                  560 Ant – harbor, Rom – coal, Gunpowder, beads to Rome, 126g

                  This trade to Rome from the other colony, Ravenna, replaced the Pisae route with its own by lowering the base trade in Pisae temporarily before making the delivery. This trade also unblocked the supply of wine in Rome.

                  580 Pis – colosseum, Pom – colosseum, Magnetism
                  600 Rav – colosseum, Cma – harbor, Rom – wine
                  620 Steam Engine, wine(d) to Nottingham, 165g
                  640 Pis – copper, Railroad, Chinese, Vikings – give tech, share maps, Zulus – war, Mongols – give tech, share maps, coal(d) to Smarakand, 134g

                  This final coal trade was made to Smarakand after lowering the base trade in Ravenna enough to replace its route with the one from Samarkand. After this, Rome had three routes established with Mongol cities, in time to get a rail connection established. These routes would “stick” for the rest of the game after this was done.

                  A war was provoked with the Zulus to justify the dirty work needed to subvert Isandhlwana.

                  660 Rav – dye, Nea – colosseum, Vei – colosseum, Rom – diplomat, Metallurgy
                  680 Pis – galleon, wool(d) to Tlatelolco, 344g

                  The trireme not assigned to Rome was disbanded in Pisae while building a galleon to continue trade with the Aztecs. The trireme assigned to Rome was headed for Isandhlwana.

                  700 Rom – coal, Industrialization, Nea – transport, Isandhlwana bribed, 488g, 72 gold and Horseback Riding in tribute; Zulus – peace, give tech, share maps

                  Somehow, I don’t think a human opponent would have wanted a peace treaty right after such treachery. I consider this lack of revengeful feelings to be an endearing AI trait! This city came with a harbor and many military units and took some of the steam out of the Zulu’s aggression towards the English.

                  720 Isa – colosseum, we love starts in all cities

                  Isandhlwana had many military units. I disbanded more than were needed to build a temple, so started it off with a colosseum, instead.

                  740 Mongols – give tech, share maps, dye(d) to Karakorum, 115g, Hispalis, another settler joins the city

                  Hispalis was located just outside Rome’s city radius, and was used as a station leading to Samarkand and Karakorum, the two Mongol cities making up the three trade routes in Rome. An instant rail bonus was established a few turns later by the remaining settler, which ended up doubling the amount of continuing trade being earned by these routes. Since the “goto” route used by the game to determine this bonus can be tricky, station placement should be as close as possible to the SSC to make sure this benefit is claimed, especially when more than one AI city is involved. The individual “goto” routes to Samarakand and Karakorum diverged after leaving Hispalis. Now, 1 turn advances are easily attainable with city science.

                  Hispalis served another function, acting as the recipient of “wonder bread” from Rome, when this ploy was needed to re-supply Rome’s wine and dye. Hispalis never grew and just accumulated shields that were used to help build the Apollo wonder later on.

                  760 Corporation, wine(d) to Tlatelolco, 430g
                  780 His – temple, Isa – silk, Pis – cloth, Rom – dye, Rav, Vei – transports, coal(d) to Samarkand, 137g

                  800 Cma, Ant – colosseums, Rom – wine, Refining, copper(d) to Rome, 176g, we love ends

                  Now all helpers except Hispalis were at size 7 or 8, and all colonies were at size 7. Rome reached its maximum size of 24 citizens, and could produce 1008 beakers, now that the rail connections were in place. These had doubled the three ongoing trade route values from 12 to 24 arrows, each. Without this bonus, Rome would have only been producing 786 beakers. Helpers and colonies were adding a little over 200 beakers, so at the maximum science setting, 1227 beakers were available. The current tech cost was only 1134.

                  820 Isa – temple, Pis – gold, Pom – salt, Explosives
                  840 Combustion, dye(d) to Calixtlahuaca, 532g, wine(d) to Tlatelolco, 650g, Mongols – give tech, share maps

                  860 His – engineers, Rav – engineers, Atomic Theory, Isa –coal, Pom – dye, Nea – engineers, Cma – coal, Ant – gems, Vei – engineers, Rom – dye, Electricity

                  This was the first of many turns with two advances. The only disadvantage with Rome, was that its freights could not reach transports on the south coast without using up movement points. It’s desirable to deliver an SSC freight on the turn it is produced, so that another can be re-supplied more quickly with wonder bread. Most of these new engineers were used to speed up the rail connection from from Rome to Veii. One engineer was going to be sent to make some roads leading to inland Aztec cities, such as Tlatelolco, so that freights landing on that continent could reach their destinations without wasting a turn.

                  860 Rom – food, gold(d) to Hispalis, 132g

                  Each food produced by Rome, when contributed to the wonder being built in Hispalis, caused a re-supply of wine and dye, since neither commodity had been used in the 3 railed routes to the Mongol cities. Wine was always in demand in Tlatelolco, and dye was always in demand somewhere else.

                  880 Rom – wine, Electronics, salt(d) to Calixtlahuaca, 152g
                  900 His – silk, Rav – wine, Isa – beads, Pom – library, Steel, cloth(d) to Cumae, 192g, silk(d) to Calixtlahuaca, 294g

                  920 Pis – gold, Vei – copper, Automobile, dye(d) to Kaupang, 680g, wine(d) to Tlatelolco, 660g

                  More turns with two advances are imminent. Automobile means superhighways, and things that are already very good, get dramatically better when this improvement is added to Rome and all of the helpers and colonies.

                  940 His – dye, Mass Production, Rav, Pom – superhighways, Nea – silver, Cma – hides, Rom – superhighways, Nuclear Fission, gold(d) to Pompeii, 218g, gems(d) to Nottingham, 300g, English – trade for Warrior Code, share maps, Aztecs – trade for Monarchy, share maps

                  The addition of superhighways in Rome increased its beaker capacity to 1308.

                  960 Isa – spice, Pis – superhighways, Rom – food, Conscription, silk(d) to Ravenna, 188g, silver(d) to Rom – 300g, copper(d) to Tenochtitlan, 180g

                  980 Isa – dye, Nea – cloth, Vei – superhighways, Rom – wine, Feudalism, wine(d) to Karakorum, 397g, copper(d) to Tenochtitlan, 306g

                  1000 Rav – oil, Pis – cloth, Pom – gold, Cma – superhighways, Rom – dye, Chivalry, wine(d) to Tlatelolco, 1008g

                  1020 Isa, Nea, Ant – superhighways, Vei – transport, Rom –food, Leadership, Zulus – give tech, share maps, coal(d) to Pompeii, 544g, beads(d) to Hispalis, 188g, oil(d) to Rome, 1026g, cloth to Veii, 116g

                  1040 Nuclear Power, Rav – cloth, Pis – gold, Pom – university, Cma – oil, Rom – wine, Laser, coal(d) to Pisae, 400g, wine(d) to Tlatelolco, 1062g, hides(d) to Tlaxcala, 360g

                  1060 Tactics, Isa – engineers, Pom – oil, Nea – gold, Ant – library, Vei – library, Rom – food, dye(d) to Beijing, 336g, dye(d) to Tlaxcala, 828g, dye(d) to Hlobane, 546g, Vikings, Mongols – give tech, trade maps

                  The Vikings were given enough techs to make sure they had more than 32, because a destination for some gold was needed, and Kaupang’s demand wildcard would be gold when the Vikings had enough techs.

                  1080 Machine Tools, Rav – food, Pis – cloth, Pom – silk, Cma – copper, Vei – university, Rom – wine, Mobile Warfare, spice(d) to Rome, 1074g, gold(d) to Hispalis, 200g, wine(d) to Tlatelolco, 1005g

                  Trades peaked on this turn with over 2200 gold earned.

                  1100 Miniaturization, Nea – food, Ant – university, Rom – dye, Computers, oil(d) to Ravenna, 537g, cloth to Ravenna, 32g, dye(d) to Teotihuacan, 104g

                  1120 Rav – oil, Pis, Pom, Cma – food, Vei – dye, Rom – Research Lab, Flight, silk(d) to Kaupang, 330g, gold(d) to Kaupang, 330g, gold(d) to Kaupang, 378g, dye(d) to Tlatelolco, 500g, copper(d) to Texcoco, 252g

                  The silk trade to Kaupang was used to trigger the appearance of its gold demand wildcard. On the previous turn, the cloth delivery to Ravenna was used to unblock its supply of oil. Beakers available peaked here, with Rome producing 1368 and the other cities adding another 458 for a total of 1826, which was more than enough.

                  1140 Radio, Isa – dye, Nea – food, Cma – oil, Ant, Rom – food, Advanced Flight, oil(d) to Rome, 598g, Mongols – trade for Pottery, give tech, share maps

                  Now that trade was winding down, Pottery could be acquired to allow research to be switched to Rocketry instead.

                  1160 Rav, Pis – food, Pom – gold, Vei – food, Rome – dye, Rocketry, dye(d) to Nottingham, 232g, oil(d) to Isandhlwana, 480g, dye(d) to Tlaxcala, 432g

                  1180 Isa – spice, Pom – dye, Nea, Cma, Ant – food, Rome – wine, Space Flight, wine(d) to Bokhara, 176g, oil(d) to Ravenna, 358g, Zulus – 200g tribute, give tech, share maps, Chinese – give tech, share maps, Aztecs – trade for Communism, share maps, Mongols – give tech share maps

                  I was looking for an AI that had a tech to trade to reset the tech list next turn.

                  1200 His – Apollo Program, Rav – oil, Isa – diplomat, Pis, Vei – food, Rom – salt, Plastics, spice(d) to Rome, 947g, cloth(d) to Hlobane, 350g, gold(d) to Kaupang, 300g, English – give tech, share maps

                  1220 All helpers and colonies – SS structurals, Rome – SS Component, salt(d) to Nottingham, 608g, oil(d) to Rome, 629g, dye(d) to Samarkand, 296g, Mongols – 50g tribute, give tech, share maps

                  Not too greedy on part of the Mongols, since I had over 4000 gold.

                  1240 His – SS Component, Rav – SS structural, Isa – SS Module, Pis – SS structural, Pom – SS Module, Nea, Cma, Ant, Vei – SS structurals, Rom – SS Module, Fusion Power 15-1-1-1-1-1, Launch, ETA 1276

                  Well, at least I was able to launch by Dr. Spike’s landing date! I had over 2000 gold leftover, and had purchased most of the spaceship with cash from trades, so could have made a faster ship by building two more cities a few turns earlier.

                  Once a spaceship is launched, the game becomes boring for me and doing things like building more wonders or attacking the AI were worn out amusements while waiting 36 turns, so for this game I decided to defend and play it Gandhi style, and adopted a policy of non-violent resistance.

                  I defended my cities, but never attacked nor declared war on any of the AI, and they were not impressed. During this time the Aztecs devoted themselves to some single-minded sabotage against Pisae, and with an almost endless supply of diplomats, stripped that city of all improvements and sabotaged every build attempted there for the rest of the game. This put me into Anarchy for awhile, during which the Zulus got even by reclaiming Isandhlwana by inciting a revolt. The other AI were not impressed with the non-violent approach, either, and numerous “secret” alliances were formed to try and do in the Romans. My attempts at Satyagraha failed miserably with the AI, and I have concluded that they have no conscience or morals, whatsoever.

                  1276 Arrival on Alpha Centauri


                  • #24
                    4.0 References

                    The best reference is the Great Library put together by Scouse Gits, which contains pointers to many of the best strategy threads ever to appear in this forum. For more specific discussions about early landing strategy, I will provide a few links here to my own threads on the topic. These threads preceded the advent of our Early Landing Comparison Games, which all are welcome to join in on as new participants. The only real requirement is that you enjoy yourself while playing your own games.

                    Going for 500 AD on Standard Maps


                    Going for 1000 AD without Huts

                    Last edited by solo; March 30, 2003, 22:45.


                    • #25
                      Since this looks finished, allow me to be the first to congratulate you. The Solo-icy is a great piece of work.


                      • #26
                        can I be the second to congratulate you? Didn't think getting an early AC landing could be so complex.
                        Hi, I'm a sig virus. Pass me on by putting me in your sig!


                        • #27
                          A jewel!
                          The vade mecum of all serious early landers (and also the less serious ones like me ).
                          Should of course be transfered to the GL ASAP.

                          The key, please!

                          When I was a youngster, we used to sing now and then "open the door, Richard!..."
                          Aux bords mystérieux du monde occidental


                          • #28
                            Thanks Dr. Spike, Patashu & La Fayette,

                            It was fun putting this together but I'm glad it's over with, too. I agree about updating the great Library, especially with many of the recent threads authored by Samson. I borrowed heavily from his research and that other many others while working on this project.

                            As new ideas evolve about early landing strategy I encourage others to post their findings here to keep things up to date.


                            • #29
                              Originally posted by DrSpike
                              Since this looks finished, allow me to be the first to congratulate you. The Solo-icy is a great piece of work.
                              perhaps we could call it a Sololiquy on Early landings?
                              Insert witty phrase here


                              • #30
                                solo - I'm looking forward to reading your masterpiece
                                I have only had time for a quick scan (after [1]'s wedding ) but am very impressed with the amount of detail you have included.

                                You should receive the Apolytoner of the year award for the massive amount of work involved.


                                "Our words are backed by empty wine bottles! - SG(2)
                                "One of our Scouse Gits is missing." - -Jrabbit