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  • The barracks game

    I suppose I should come right out and admit it:
    I am a BAD PLAYER. I can't play past Prince difficulty level. I love the game, I just suck at continuous warfare. Just a disclaimer in case what I'm about to say makes no sense to veterans.
    Anyway, while playing the early phases of the game, before Adam Smith makes a library and a marketplace in every city practical, I often find myself with nothing to build in a city. It'll be too low in production to really contribute regularly to my wonder cities with caravans, too small in size or short on food to safely crank out settlers(or else in the middle of a fully developed area or on a crowded continent), and already supporting a large army. I usually default to a simple trick my brother came up with that he termed "the barracks game": build a barracks in the city, and sell it. Build another barracks, and sell it. Build another, sell it. And so on. At forty bucks a pop, it works like bastardized, low-level capitalization. I have never found a use for barracks, since I always fight for the Great Wall, which ensures a nice non-military period until I can get Leonardo's and start a musketeer rush with a cheap army of suddenly upgraded phalanxes. And past gunpowder they're too frigging expensive. So I use barracks as a crude scam device. My question is, is this wise? Is there anything better to do with a city that can't produce much without becoming a financial burden? What do the better players do?
    1011 1100
    Pyrebound--a free online serial fantasy novel

  • #2
    There are times when this can be useful but I would suggest that if used more than once in game there are problems with your overall strategy.

    If in doubt build a few/lots more caravans. Stick them in a boat going to some distant shores and enjoy the benefits.

    The notion that a Library and Market should be present in every city is seldom the right move. They both cost 80 shields each yet only a few cities will really benefit from their construction. The Markets are a better buy than the Libraries as they aid celebrations/growth in Republic/Demo.

    By mid-game (around the dawn of Railroad) scientific advances are costing over 1000 beakers. Do you really want to waste resources on a Library in Sh!tsville that converts 6 beakers into 9?

    ------------------------

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

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    • #3
      I used this trick from time to time in my early days, but I've been converted to trade. You really do need to have a very good reason not to be building a caravan. If you haven't discovered trade yet, build a settler to grow your main city, build new cities or improve the land. If your in a wonder race before you discover trade (it can happen) build a warrior to disband for extra shields.

      Anyway that's my take on it. (But I have been known to let my caravans queue up because I haven't built enough boats to take them to their destinations. )

      RJM at Sleepers
      Fill me with the old familiar juice

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      • #4
        Yes if in doubt build another camel
        The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits

        Hydey the no-limits man.

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        • #5
          Well, you’ve come to the right place -- although most of these folks would rather think of you as a “soon to be better player”.

          Trade. Make the camels, put one or two on a boat & send over to another continent. Try to match the goods produced with the goods demanded for a bigger payoff -- the payoff reaps coins AND beakers for science. And the payoffs can be dramatic. For example, in a game that I was playing last night -- I’m in the early mid-game stage, have about 15 cities, 30 techs or so. Haven’t fought anybody yet, and next to my continent, is another civ. I dropped off two camels, both demanded -- one was copper, yielding 620 coins AND beakers, and the other was silk -- which netted 770! Instead of my normal 9 turns per advance with a 70% science rate in Republic, I got the next advance (Monotheism) in ONE turn.

          Sooooo next turn, I took my 1000+ coins and spent most of them -- bought a warrior (50); no wait, changed that to a phalanx (another 25); no wait, make it a diplomat (another 25); nope that’s not it -- a settlers (another 25) -- No, I really want a camel (the final 25) -- welcome to the concept of incremental rush buying. More camels were rushed as well -- six to be cashed in for a Wonder (King Richard’s Crusade in this case) and the other four hit the road to go overseas -- gee I wonder why?

          Yup -- make a few camels for fun and profit.
          Those with lower expectations face fewer disappointments

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          • #6
            Yes, your research path should be simple.
            1. a better government.
            2. trade
            If this is your focus, you should never be left with any problems choosing what to build.
            Prior to trade
            1. explorers/defenders
            2. settlers
            once you get trade.
            when in doubt. CARAVANS

            A simple game.
            It's almost as if all his overconfident, absolutist assertions were spoonfed to him by a trusted website or subreddit. Sheeple
            RIP Tony Bogey & Baron O

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            • #7
              Well, the caravan looks like a llama to me, not a camel...anyway, my big beef with caravans has always been that the damn supply and demand changes too quickly. Do you still get the large science bonus if the S-D switch screws you over in mid-voyage? I ordinarily go by the isolationist tack, defend my continent to the death and let the computer have the stupid lighthouse while I take the other wonders. I guess I'll have to tinker a lot with my strategy. Thanks, all.
              1011 1100
              Pyrebound--a free online serial fantasy novel

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Elok
                Well, the caravan looks like a llama to me, not a camel...anyway, my big beef with caravans ...
                it tastes like chicken
                Haven't been here for ages....

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Elok
                  my big beef with caravans has always been that the damn supply and demand changes too quickly. Do you still get the large science bonus if the S-D switch screws you over in mid-voyage?
                  You don't get the mega bonus for un-demanded goods, but if the destination city has enough trade arrows you still get a nice payment - maybe not enough to rush 6 new caravans, but usually enough to complete at least one. And usually enough that you can pay for your white goods with a zero tax rate. The science bonus is always equal in arrows to the delivery bonus in gold. So once again un-demanded deliveries will not get you to one discovery per turn, but they will keep your research chugging along nicely. If the goods are not demanded, it's important to deliver them to the city with the largest number of trade arrows - probably the largest size city.

                  And BTW, just before you move the camel into the delivery city, re-arrange all your workers so that they are producing as many trade arrows as possible - trade specials, ocean tiles, roaded tiles. (Don't forget to move them back before you hit enter )

                  RJM at Sleepers
                  Fill me with the old familiar juice

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Elok
                    Do you still get the large science bonus if the S-D switch screws you over in mid-voyage? I ordinarily go by the isolationist tack, defend my continent to the death and let the computer have the stupid lighthouse while I take the other wonders. I guess I'll have to tinker a lot with my strategy. Thanks, all.
                    You can still get a good bonus but you just don't get the demanded multiplier. Trading of-continent to large trade rich opponent cities is real good even if it's not demanded.

                    TRADE TRADE TRADE is all the tinkering you need.
                    It's almost as if all his overconfident, absolutist assertions were spoonfed to him by a trusted website or subreddit. Sheeple
                    RIP Tony Bogey & Baron O

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      There is something we've been calling the "Solo Cycle": each city will re-examine its 3 demanded commodities at least every 16 turns (and with a caravan delivery or the building of a Wonder), with likelyhood that one or more will change. All the formulas to calculate which ones are favored are here:

                      http://apolyton.net/forums/showthrea...threadid=67754

                      The three with the highest demand get listed, but the "wildcard" has a chance of replacing one of the three. Read through the thread and notice the importance of terrain, location on the map, and techs. At the minimum, it is not too hard to figure out the "wildcard" commodities for each city. Solo has posted some maps that show relative locations. Once you know how it works, a little calculation and observation of changing demands, you will be able to predict how long you have until a key city will change demand, and possibly what the new demands will be.

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                      • #12
                        There is an old civ proverb I think DaveV first used:

                        "When you can't think of anything to build,build some caravans.When you think you have enough,build some more."

                        if nothing else,camels/trucks are 50 stored sheilds of SS parts in later game.You can have your SS "built" long before Spaceflight comes around.
                        The only thing that matters to me in a MP game is getting a good ally.Nothing else is as important.......Xin Yu

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                        • #13
                          That quote was in the signature of a poster called "JPC" (or a set of similar intitials)

                          DaveV seemed more interested in a War Game, and I believe he thought that the power of the Camel unbalanced Civ2.

                          --------------------

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

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            yes well someone said it
                            The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits

                            Hydey the no-limits man.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Trade also has an open ended, self growth factor... each delievery adds trade arrows based on the # of arrows in the sending/delivering city. You can 'grow' the trade value of certain ai cities, meaning that your own trade total will increase as will the delivery bonus for subsequent trades.

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