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Hybrid Theory

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  • Hybrid Theory

    this strategy is derivative of a conglomeration of messageboard posts from both here and civ fanatics, previous civ experience (ive been playing religiously since 1 sans SMAC) and gameplay testing. Most of this was done on a world map or some varation thereof, the final touches of which came from ThaddeusAlexanders fantastic take on the world.

    Early Game

    Immediately set science slider to 10%. your early game is going to be out one thing, and one thing only - finding someones ass to kick. you leave science on just enough to eventually get techs, and tend to try to direct the tech to useless types. I will not go into detail of build orders because every situation is different. You MUST plop down your capital immediately, so trying to say "worker worker warrior blah" is a waste since you will not always get ideal building circumstances. Your ovveriding priority is to establish a basic counry, emphasizing culture and military. I favor the egyptians in the early times, due to easy temples and increased worker speed, but any civ with early UU's works fine under my strategy.

    Send out your cheapest scouting unit at first. dont be concerned about movement rate until you've got a pretty good idea of what your region looks like. numbers are more important than the speed. You need to have alot of guys out there looking for goody huts, going in every which direction. contact with other civs will make or break your game for you.

    Trade whatever is offered from the AI. world maps are a premium until you have a general idea of what the world looks like, but accept territory map if the demand asks for gold. your gold is to be saved until monarchy. In the meantime, you build a large military of your best unit type - here is why early UU rules, because they tend to have higher movement rates and can get to your enemies quicker. expand whenever convenient via settlers. try to get your network setup where you can send a settler/military unit to a region as quickly as possible to fill in gaps or confront invaders.

    Your other priority during this stage is to determine who the weakest link is. you must find a neighbor that you will be willing to conquer. I recommend waiting till monarchy before unleashing your fury ; secure it by buying any and all tech that the ai is willing to sell you. once at monarchy you ought to have alot of gold to rush culture/military, and you ought to have the force to squash your neighbor.

    Here it starts to get fun, and is definitely the part of this strategy I enjoyed the most. as I never play a civ without religous I quickly jump to monarchy, and spend every last dime on military.

    Cry havoc and let loose the dogs of war

    OK, so you've got the military, you've got the target, and you've got up to date tech. say goodbye to technology for a while ; you'll catch up later. as long as the other guy doesnt out advance you, your UU should be able to get most of the empire. its even better to fight an enemy that doesnt have iron, so pesky swordsman are a non issue.

    You can afford to wage this war for centures if necessarry. the goal is to double the size of your empire and be a major player later on. the AI tends to settle things out pretty evenly, with a few civs getting the shaft. you want a weak enemy that you can conquer with relative ease, but not one so weak that you gain no territory from it.

    asking for another civs help can aid you, but be careful. ask for the furthest civ with a decent armies help ; you should have made friends with all the trading you've done. the idea behind the distance is it allows you to get the border cities and at least guarantee a sizeable expansion, and by the time your friend gets there he gets the fringe crap you dont want anyway. even better is when the ally shows up right at the last of the large cities and obliterates it.

    after you've pretty much defeated the next guy, its time to slow down and go into peace. stay in the same monetary arrangement and rush build the crap out of happy/culture/trade improvements. once you at least have libraries everywhere, kick science back up to where you are earnestly trying to research on your own.

    The tech broker stage

    you will be behind in technology for a while. dont worry about that. your goal now is to research the tech you KNOW the enemy doesnt have. you trade this tech for PER TURN gold, or other tech. you want either the money or the research to get everyone even again. this is important ; for this to work everyone will end up on a level playing field. you will wave goodbye to military for a long time until your science is up to date. if you cant seem to research anything fast enough and the enemy wont trade for what you do research, go back to buying tech, but buy only tech. no city improvements, no culture, nothing but money for tech. this is the last make or break stage of the strategy ; if you can level the playing field you will win.

    once you are ahead of someone, its time to start selling everything you know off for gold. on the FIRST TURN you have something, sell it to everyone in the world for per turn gold. when your per turn gold goes up, so does your science. keep a positive flow, 20-50 gold is ideal, but dont be afraid to take -4 or -5 per turn if your science is catching up.

    it must be said that you need to get to a representative government around now. I didnt mention it earlier because if you managed to keep the tech even during your war of conquest, you can go right away. if you are behind its better to stay in monarchy and buy what is left. a flaw in the strategy arises here ; what if the computer simply wont sell you a key tech? well didnt I say be a religious civ? switch to republic for the necessarry advance and get it on your own. when that done, go back to whatever makes you more money. you should never disband your army, only upgrade them, because the AI still views this as power and will not mess with you while you catch up. with the military you ought to be able to quell rebellions and disorder with military police if the no luxury monarchy works better for you. I only recommend the republic if you can afford at least 10% luxuries. dont worry, your people will LOVE you later.

    your ultimate goal is to be several advances ahead of the rest of the world, with everyone paying you through the nose per turn for tech. selling off the tech and the advantages the AI gain are minimal since you will be able to afford a higher science rate. when you get to 4 turn discoveries ewither pump luxruies or use the money to finish upgrading your army and rush building culture. also be on the lookout for luxuries. cultural dominancy is the key to this strategy and if everyone is on wltk day you will be abosrbing cities left and right. I have effectively doubled my empire from the sheer number of culturally conquered cities this way.

    Conclusion and Notes

    you basically begin the game by beating the crap out of everyone and making them fear you, and then you conclude the game by making everyone want to be your friend for the good benefits. ive had 70% tech with 500+ gold coming in per turn, financing massive armies so that NOONE would trifle with me while at the same time being the dominant force in science. I find that this combined strategy of the Pope/Vassal State/Tech Broker/Guy With Big Stick really allows for any victory type you want. personally im trying to see if I can finish my current egyptian game on regent with a culture win. This hasnt been tested on the higher difficulties just yet, although im sure it will work even better given that the AI expands more and has more tech to buy/trade for. this post is far from original, its everyones ideas kinda rolled into one big mass of civilization fun.

    questions comments and such, post em here. I read this forum more than i read my damn schoolbooks...
    "every man has his day. some days are longer than others." - Winston Churchill