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  1. #1
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Nalano's Avatar
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    Civilization Stories

    This is a thread to talk about your stories playing one or another iteration of a Sid Meier 4x game.

    Anyway, in one of my games as China, I had gotten into a lucky position where there were two one-tile isthmuses between sprawling continents on an east-west axis that just screamed "found city here to fuck with your neighbors" and a mountain range on the central landmass separating the north and south that allowed me to extend from one isthmus to the other, bordering the sea and the mountains.

    Not allowing this bounty to go to waste, I immediately sent a small army of settlers across the land. Due to my early, hungry over-extension, I ended up with eight cities, no money and a very unhappy population that lasted straight through the medieval era, which had allowed all the AIs to settle all the space around my empire and start knocking on my door.

    Now, being that I had up until this point basically stationed soldiers on the isthmuses and at a couple bottlenecks in the mountains, and small army + close borders = tension, I had fully expected Ramkhamhaeng and Gandhi to do what they usually do, which is declare the end of everything I hold dear in the most polite, kindly-spoken manner possible.


    This is the face of a stone-blooded killer

    Nope!

    They both kindly expressed permission to shuttle their armies across my territory to fight each other. Central Kingdom indeed. I was the toll booth, gatekeeper and battleground for every major land war on my continent. If Catherine had a beef with Isabella (which she did every century for two millenia), she had to go through me first. And everybody was very happy that I was there, because I provided instant respite should the wars go south for them.

    Eventually, by the time I hit the Renaissance, I ended up with nothing better to do than play World Policeman, wherein if somebody decided they weren't up to a world war and would only play in their own subcontinental sandbox and start regional wars, I'd send my army there, batter the hell out of the aggressor, liberate all the losses for the loser, and send my army back home.

    The upside of this was twofold: Every other century, the aggressor would flip because I had wiped out the last aggressor's armies from the last war. As I liberated cities equally and never took any for my own, everybody loved me despite the fact that I had killed more of their citizens than any other culture. Even the aggressor I had pounded the hell out of in the last war was still "friendly," despite my having unilaterally declared war and despite invading his country, because I had liberated his cities in the war before. It also meant that I had an unassailable diplomatic position as city states are guaranteed to vote for you in the world congress if you liberate them, no matter who's allied with them.

    Beneath his malevolent facade he's really just a teddy bear; albeit inexplicably dressed as a depressed peacock

    Now every time I play China I keep hearing in my head, "Wu Zetian ain't nuthing ta fuck wit"

    I sincerely hope I have imparted that earworm to you too.
    Last edited by Nalano; 23-05-2013 at 06:40 PM.
    Nalano H. Wildmoon
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  2. #2
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Sketch's Avatar
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    Aww yeah. Good read, I will come back and add my own soon. From all I've played of Civ, this has been one of my favourite diplomatic encounters:



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  3. #3
    Lesser Hivemind Node eRa's Avatar
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    Nothing says peace like the smouldering remains of your enemies' cities.

    Gandhi has to be the most warmongering bastard ever though.

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    What was your difficulty setting on there Nalano? I find almost all CIV stories need a mention of that setting because it almost singlehandedly decides how much you will be cursing the AI.

  5. #5
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Nalano's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Misnomer View Post
    What was your difficulty setting on there Nalano? I find almost all CIV stories need a mention of that setting because it almost singlehandedly decides how much you will be cursing the AI.
    Prince. I play on King now.
    Nalano H. Wildmoon
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    Civ can provide some memorable gaming moments. My favorite:

    I believe it was Civ 2. I was playing as the Greeks and had a small island with 4 cities. I moved on to a nearby continent quickly and established 3 or 4 more cities on the smaller part of the continent. The continent was almost split in two by water - only a 3-tile wide, 5 tile long land bridge connected two halves of the continent. The other half was dominated by the Romans, who had 8-10 cities. It just so happened that our territories met right in the middle of the length of the land bridge.

    We didn't get along. We ended up in a massive arms race the like I've never seen in a Civ game. Conflict was inevitable.

    I built forts on my side of the land bridge. Caesar responded by building forts on his side. I loaded up massive amounts of troops on my side of the land bridge. He loaded up massive amounts of troops on his. A seaborne invasion was impossible given the number of military ships each had. We were going to have to slug it out on land.

    I had just squeaked ahead in research since I didn't need to protect my island cities and had just discovered cannons. I rush built a couple of them and launched the attack. The fight was truly epic. I have never seen that many units fight at one time - literally each one of us had well over 100 units. It took a solid hour to get through that turn. But in the end my ever-so-slight lead in military research won out and I forced the Romans back a couple of hexes. Without the forts to protect them, the fight became a slaughter and my units were able to break out of the bottleneck. The AI had committed everything to the fight - I found that his cities were undefended. Like a swarm of locusts, we devoured all of his cities in a matter of a few turns.

    When it was done, we were by far the largest Civ out there. But my once-proud military of a couple of hundred units was reduced to about 20. The rest of the game was a cakewalk and rebuilding my forces didn't take too long, but that fight remains some of the most fun I've had from any strategy game in 30+ years of PC gaming. It was a combination of the perfect map, reactive AI and just sheer dumb luck the way things ended up.

  7. #7
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Jesus_Phish's Avatar
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    I started and finished a game last night, as the Inca Empire. Rules I set for myself were that I was only allowed one city. The place I started off seemed pretty good for me. There was isthmus to the right of my settlers, some mountains to the west and south west which would help with my terraced farms, the coast wasn't too far south and it was defended by natural ice from anyone sailing into it.

    For the first couple of ages, up until about industrial, I was miles ahead of everyone. My religion was the most popular, even though I did very little to spread it, my culture was through the roof, my city had something like 46 extra happiness, I had a worker in every single tile and in every specialist building. My production was amazingly efficient as I'd learn new techs and within two turns I could build them. I managed to spread out my boarders as far as possible without anyone messing with me.

    Then it all started going a bit south. Montezuma kept spying on me, I killed two of his spies and told him to stop it. So he started a war with me. Luckily I had positioned forts on my isthmus with cannons behind them and there was nothing he could do but die. He eventually backed off. I decided I wanted to generate more money but also defend myself from future attacks. What if Darius decided to attack through the mountain gaps in the northwest? So I ordered my workers who at this point had nothing to do, to construct forts next to all the hex's that bordered my territory. I thought I was so smart. I moved the forts outside of my territory and put trading posts up in their place.

    Darius decided to settle cities all along that part of the map and slowly but surely my forts fell into his control, meaning I'd just giving him free forts to sit his own dudes in and stare right back at me.

    Montezuma has another crack at me, but then he has to go for peace because Hiawatha goes on the warpath. Hiawatha is also somehow in the atomic era while the rest of us are trying to figure out electricity. Turns out Hiawatha was on the warpath the whole game and had so many research points that he could just fly up tech trees. Not long after he wiped all but one of Montezuma's cities off the map, Hiawatha won through the space victory.

    My civilization was about twenty turns from starting the utopia project.

    So in short.

    The Native 'Merican's wiped out the Aztecs and then flew a rocket into space off their back of enslaved Aztec and Persian scientists.
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  8. #8
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Nalano's Avatar
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    I think I've learned how to proxy war.

    Again China, this time on what looks like a giant tribble of a continent where everybody's close to the shore and there's a big meaty expanse of plains and jungles in the center. Shared the continent with Mongolia, Celts, Persia, Carthage, Russia and Sweden.

    Fast forward to the Medieval era: China is getting China-sized, Mongolia is running roughshod over the open plains, Persia is wiping Sweden off the map, and everybody else is getting bogged down in the jungle. I chose to use my copious papermaker money to buy off Hong Kong, Singapore and Colombo, and pledged to protect them because Genghis Khan - at this point a close friend, though I built the Great Wall just in case - gleefully sends a horde every so often. Hong Kong, especially, is sitting on three (!) luxury resources and is a necessary part of my grand plan of keeping my millions happy and not losing the mandate of heaven. It's also, along with Colombo, a buffer between me and Genghis Khan.

    So Genghis starts knocking on Hong Kong's door with something like half a million warriors and horsemen led by a general. He then sends me a kindly-worded note that says "Oh hey, we were at Hong Kong and couldn't help but notice the 'Made in China' boxes everywhere. Was this yours?" And the game says "revoke your protection of Hong Kong and piss off this cash cow with its pearls and its porcelain and its cheeky way of pronouncing things or start a war with Mongolia for the rest of history."

    So I piss off Hong Kong, which is worth about 20 points on the We Like You meter, putting them somewhere below "let us make sweet, sweet babies made entirely of large denomination bills" but still above "we should start seeing other, richer people." But I can't just let Mongolia get away with this: I'm China! Nobody bullies Chinese people but me! So I gift Hong Kong half a dozen Chokunus, which is something like a third of my garrison force - not that I needed them, because they were stationed in big, safe interior cities in a sprawling jungle empire. The game takes three turns before gifted units show up on the premises in new colors, so I get to spend them watching Hong Kong's two archers get swept in an orgy of blood and piles of skulls and rather clever post-war reconstruction plans as the Mongolians are wont to do.

    But just as Genghis start readying the torches, poof! Not a tile was wasted with the introduction of the reserves. The following turns, as Chokunus are pretty much the only units at this point that have automatic weapons and two attacks per turn, embodied a scene fairly reminiscent of the calligraphy school in 英雄, except without Maggie Cheung.

    Best thing about it is, Genghis is either not suspicious or simply likes a good scrap between friends, because he never questioned why China was so polite when he was clearly encroaching on their sphere of influence or why all these uniquely Chinese units appeared out of nowhere to kick his horse's ass back to Karakorum. Next time he comes calling for embassy rights and a research grant, it's like nothing ever happened. Why should a few hundred thousand deaths get in the way of common courtesy?
    Nalano H. Wildmoon
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  9. #9
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Jesus_Phish's Avatar
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    I remember in one of the first games I played with the expansion, I ended up sharing a reasonable sized island with William of Orange and two city states. When I say reasonably sized, I mean for one person, but I was happy enough to share. He was not. He marched an army into my borders and began a war. Luckily, both city states loved me and they were both military states. SO I grab some free units and start producing an army of warriors and archers and march him back to his own lands.

    He offers peace, but his offer is one of those "I'm going to be cheeky and ask for more from you even though you just battered me home, so peace + two of your cities please". In response I bring in the siege units and systematically lay waste and capture his cities one by one. When he has 3 cities I offer him peace again, just peace. He refuses outright. By this stage he's so annoyed at me that he just wont settle the quarrel.

    I bring him down to his last city. He still wont accept basic peace terms of "look man, I'll leave you alone". So I end him. Then he gives out telling me he wishes I would've been peaceful with him.
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  10. #10
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    I forget more details but I had one game where I invaded a continent which had been taken over by the Greeks. The cities I took over I liberated back to the Civ that was taken out. I would take about 5 cities and Greece would plead for peace. I did so and was looking for a period of peace and focus on other parts of the map. But Greece really must have hated this Civ because soon enough they were back and invading those same Cities. I was able to reinforce in time to save the last city and had enough with the Greek antics. I wiped them out, restoring city states and turning all their cities into puppets. It helped being a step ahead in research and having the superior army.

  11. #11
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Berzee's Avatar
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    tbh when I first saw this thread I thought it was going to be a discussion about the new Civilization game, "Civilization Stories", which I imagined to be an offshoot of the main franchise, more character-focused and concerned with the rise and fall of a particular leader, and possibly containing light RPG or Adventure elements.

    I still think that every time I see the thread title. It makes me think of Warcraft Adventures.

    (But really it is a thread about how plain old Civilization has plenty stories)
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by eRa View Post
    ...... Gandhi has to be the most warmongering bastard ever though.
    Yeah, and i think this has been constant since Civ1 (not sure on III or V)? I wonder if Sid had an issue with the Indian push for independence and the whole 'pacifist' thing that Ghandi was famous for? It certainly never makes sense to me to see Ghandi as such a war monger in my games.

    Since CivIV and the introduction of the Fall From Heaven II and Dune Wars mods, i've had lots of awesome games, both SP and hotseat mashups with friends. Those are both fantastic mods and CivIV (with the BtS expansion) as good a Civ game you could need.

  13. #13
    Lesser Hivemind Node Kaira-'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZakG View Post
    Yeah, and i think this has been constant since Civ1 (not sure on III or V)? I wonder if Sid had an issue with the Indian push for independence and the whole 'pacifist' thing that Ghandi was famous for? It certainly never makes sense to me to see Ghandi as such a war monger in my games.
    I remember reading somewhere that it was basically a bug that stayed because it was a fan favourite.

    Side-note: at which difficulty does the AI in CIV V become even remotely competent in anything? On Prince I pretty much waltz over any AI, be it in combat, science or gold.

  14. #14
    Lesser Hivemind Node eRa's Avatar
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    Never, the only thing that changes with difficulty is the penalties imposed on the player. The AI always plays the same game (this is also true for Civ V IIRC).

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    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Nalano's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kaira- View Post
    I remember reading somewhere that it was basically a bug that stayed because it was a fan favourite.
    Quite so: Gandhi was never warmongering, but a bug in Civ2 made him so pacifist it bugged out and he would beeline for nukes. This was indeed a funny aspect of otherwise peace-loving Gandhi, so in Civ4 and Civ5 his "do I like nukes" meter is something like 14 out of 10, putting him above such nasty neighbors as Montezuma.

    While the AI plays the same game and all that matters is its handicap (which is more or less how all 4x/rts/tbs games go), each leader goes has different strategies: Gandhi and Catherine both abhor war right up until they're in one, then are the kinds of fighters that never, ever, ever declare peace until one of you is wiped out - Gandhi because of the nukes business, Catherine because that seems to be how Russia fights wars. al-Rashid and Sejong would rather sit back and befriend all local city-states instead of fight people, which always puts them at odds with Maria Theresa and Genghis Khan, because their entire strategy is centered on annexing city-states. Montezuma hates you.
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    Secondary Hivemind Nexus soldant's Avatar
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    So this is why I see you playing Civ V all the time.

    Great read, makes me want to play again. Would Kickstart a sequel.
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  17. #17
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Nalano's Avatar
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    So I decided to start a game and pack as many civilizations as I could in one map. I got to 22, with 24 city-states.

    Fast-forward to the Renaissance: I own a third of one continent, having wiped Rome off the face of the earth because he couldn't play nice with India, who I share a ridiculously long border with. The second continent has been embroiled in a war for about 2,000 years, which sounds bad, until you realize the third continent goes, from north to south: Montezuma, Ramses, Catherine. Egypt got to play Poland in alternate history's worst shit sandwich.

    While I could, with the frequent use of forts and citadels and automatic weapons, get people to stop fighting me, growing pains made absolutely certain they would not stop fighting one another. About the only thing everybody could agree on was that they all hated Kamehameha, largely because they all knew Kamehameha. Hell, there was so much war going on that this happened:



    I didn't even know this could happen.
    Nalano H. Wildmoon
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  18. #18
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus c-Row's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ZakG View Post
    Yeah, and i think this has been constant since Civ1 (not sure on III or V)? I wonder if Sid had an issue with the Indian push for independence and the whole 'pacifist' thing that Ghandi was famous for? It certainly never makes sense to me to see Ghandi as such a war monger in my games.
    "If there's anything in reality that's not fun, we will change it." - Sid Meier

    And let's face it, passive resistance doesn't sound like an awful lot of fun.
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  19. #19
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Jesus_Phish's Avatar
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    Is that a City State that just took over a capital?
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  20. #20
    Network Hub Dubbill's Avatar
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    They'll conquer enemy cities but immediately raze them so they revert back to being a single city city state. I've had it happen to one of my remote outposts in the past and I saw the same thing earlier today when I was playing a single-city game. I was getting ticked off with Kamehameha but didn't want to capture anything of his, even for the time it takes to raze. I softened him up with bombers and rocket artillery and left the ground-war to my ally, Marakech.

    Last edited by Dubbill; 28-05-2013 at 12:14 PM. Reason: screenie
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