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Yet Another Early UU GA Thread

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  • Yet Another Early UU GA Thread

    Hi all,

    how large of an advantage would UU use have to give you for you to accept....

    - a Despotic GA?
    - a GA where more than 50% of your cities' squares will receive no extra shield from it?
    - a GA where more than 75% of your cities' squares will receive no extra shield from it?

    The random civ picker keeps handing me (I've been playing lots of "test" games since crawling over the border to Emperor) the Babs, Egyptians, Romans, and especially Persians. It loves the Persians for some reason.

    With the Babs, I suppose I can build a lone bowman and just wait for Swordsmen and I really won't have lost much strategic advantage -- I mean, the "bonus spearman" inside the bowman is also inside the swordsman. I might regret the loss of the archer rush option, but I'm finding archer rushes really hard on Emperor (albeit partly due to failing to build enough spearmen), so I guess that's OK. But still, maybe a proponent of Bowman rushes can state the opposite case.

    With the Egyptians, I'm really confused as to what to do. 150% as many horsemen for the same price sounds really useful for a horseman rush, but the only thing I hate more than despotic GA's are despotic GA's when I have a small number of mostly small cities working mostly mined shielded grassland, which admittedly doesn't surround most start positions, but does surround a larger-than-average portion of them. Religious helps here, as at the worst you start out 120 turns from Monarchy and you can afford to go Mon --> Rep, but 120 turns is a LOOOONG time from the standpoint of those chariots.

    With the Romans and Persians, really a dilemma. Man, not being religious HURTS. The only saving graces are that by the time you get them, a good part of the wait for Republic is behind you, and that you can always do the swords thing. But in vanilla civ, a swordsman that waits to attack until The Republic is a swordsman with a short useful life, or just a cheaper, better-defended longbowman in the case of the Immortal. But... THOSE DA3#@#$ DESPOTIC GAs!!

    My "main" current game (outside of testing games) at the moment is with the Persians. I got halfway into a chariot buildup to a horseman rush on the Zulus until I said... um, uh wait, ZULUS! Now I'm not sure what to do -- I have mostly-veteran 7 chariots and 4 in the queue, a random-length (unless I save-cheat) window for a writing-horseback riding trade, Zulus close by to the NW on a fat plains peninsula, and the Babs and Aztecs (who fortunately have been at war) with cities past a pure-jungle belt to my S in small (N portion), then gradually larger clearings, then open terrain. I LOOK strong, but I'm not sure if my "glorified archers" are going to be any use at all.

    So -- to go slightly OT in my own post -- should I S-A-Q, start a "Despotic-GA-and-all" Immortal buildup, hit the strategically easier to fight Zulus or the tactically easier Babs or Aztecs?

    Can post a save on request.

    I haven't gotten the Iroquois much lately, but of course they suffer the same problem. Theoretically their religious and expansionist traits open up the possibility of a hut-assisted monarchy beeline, but in the one game I played (Monarch), I had demolished half of Germany with archers and swordsmen, and was getting ready to oscillate onto the Jags before acquiring (for some odd reason earlier than Monarchy) The Republic, although I think I'd gone for Republic for some reason. I have a hunch someone will chime in here stating the power of MW's is so huge that weakening your GA is a less important problem than weakening (delaying) your MW attack. I hope they do; I'd like to hear their case.

    I've left the Aztecs, Greeks and Zulus out of the above because I find that their defensive nature means that in SP (I don't have PTW), not using them in despotism is a bit more bearable (well, for the Aztecs, it's bearable in this age of toned-down retreat).

    "'Lingua franca' je latinsky vyraz s vyznamem "jazyk francouzsky", ktery dnes vetsinou odkazuje na anglictinu," rekl cesky.

  • #2
    I hate despotic GAs too.

    Archer warfare (not archer rushing, per se) directed at iron denial can help buy you enough time to get into Monarchy prior to opening up a can of whoopass on 1 or more neighbors.

    grog want tank...Grog Want Tank... GROG WANT TANK!

    The trick isn't to break some eggs to make an omelette, it's convincing the eggs to break themselves in order to aspire to omelettehood.


    • #3
      I think that is a good strategy at times, send some archers out to harrass, not capture. Kill spears and settler combos, warriors and trash improvements. These are less risky than trying to assault the city with a few spears in it. You can get elites and set them back with very little loss. Get them to buy you off in the bargain.
      With Hammy and Cleo, I tend to not put them in any action with their UU, until I want the GA. Persia I find it harder to hold back on Immortals. You can often have quite a few cities with Persia before then, but Bowman could be very early indeed.


      • #4
        Thanks, you too. A shame the only two opinions I got were from people who basically have the same instincts (dump the military advantage for a better GA) as I do... and I have a funny feeling this thread is gonna disappear off the list faster than you can say "AU".

        It's a busy time on this forum...

        "'Lingua franca' je latinsky vyraz s vyznamem "jazyk francouzsky", ktery dnes vetsinou odkazuje na anglictinu," rekl cesky.


        • #5
          Although I would not consider myself to be the same as vmxa1 or Arrian ( I ain't that good ), I too despise Despotic GAs. In fact I hate to get a GA anytime beyond exactly when I want from a civ development perspective. For me the UUs abilities almost never exceed the vanilla version's aspects by enough to jeopardise the raw priduction power of a GA at a critical moment. At low difficulties you don't often need the advantage over the AI, and at higher difficulties you should have stacks large enough to render a +1 attack per unit effectively meaningless.

          This is why I often play as the Americans - I can effectively choose the GA whenever I feel like having it assuming I am able to pick a wonder or two to get. If it has to wait until I get F16s then sobeit - at least by then I know I will be using the GA well.

          Back to the ROOTS of addiction. My first missed poll!


          • #6
            Sorry I haven't responded to this yet. My ISP cut out on me in the middle of a response last night.

            I'm another one that tries hard to avoid despotic GAs whenever possible. I think the drawbacks of despotic GAs have been well covered already. So I'll look at the flip side. Sometimes a despotic GA is necessary and even beneficial. If all that stands between you and getting too far behind in a game is a despotic GA, I'll take the GA any day. For one of my best emperor games (and actually my first win at emperor level) I was playing the Romans surrounded on four sides (MZO's Boot Camp II for any who recognize the starting location). I started with a nice early archer rush to prune England, but after a while I was getting outexpanded on all four sides. My only recourse, both offensively and defensively was a massive upgrade to Legions and blowing through England. When I entered battle it of course triggered the despotic GA. While not as optimal as it could have been the GA provided me with enough shield output to produce more troops for when my army started taking casualties. In the end it gave me enough to annihilate England and set me up for the eventual win. If I had tried to wait for an "optimal" GA, there is no way I would have won that game.

            My example doesn't mean I'm advocating the merits of a despotic GA, just that they are sometimes more beneficial than they appear to be. I wouldn't have won that game without triggering a GA early on.


            • #7
              The only thing is tah you don't know you strategic position *before* the game, which is when you pick your civ. I personally like the German's Panzers because it fits my play style almost perfectly (ie relatively peaceful builder and then late crushing offensive ). The late GA helps the great Teutonic Empire spread peace and democracy (or whatever other government I'm using) around the world to the unenlightened masses.
              If God doesn't play dice, does that mean RPGs are sinful?


              • #8
                One interesting thing, which I think is no accident, is that most of the civs with REALLY early UU's are Religious, which means that especially on the higher levels (with their faster tech development), they can often reach "GA viability" sooner through a Monarchy switch.

                I agree that sometimes, again especially on the higher levels you just gotta use 'em at the cost of a despotic GA, and that will be determined by the map. I play Huge/16, so this problem is a BIT smaller, but it's still there.

                One thing's for sure: it's all or nothing once you've decided to sacrifice your GA. You don't just send a UU's... you gotta send waves.

                "'Lingua franca' je latinsky vyraz s vyznamem "jazyk francouzsky", ktery dnes vetsinou odkazuje na anglictinu," rekl cesky.