Sirian's Great Library - Strategies for Civilization III
RBCiv Epic Twenty-Seven

Civilization: China
Difficulty: Monarch
World Size: Standard
Opponents: Nine
Climate: Standard
Rainfall: Standard
Mountains: Standard
Land Mass: 40%
Land Shape: Pangaea
Barbarians: None
Version: PTW 1.21f
These are my results from Epic 27 of the Realms Beyond Civilization tournament. Click Here to visit the Epics home page for the specific rules and goals of this event, or for more information about the Epics.
This is a shadow report. I sponsored the game and edited the map, so these results include significant spoiler information and are just for curioisity's sake.
Rather than attempt to "play fair" with simulated handicaps, I decided to make maximum use of the spoiler information I had in forging my strategy. I thought it might make interesting comparisons vs everyone else, who had to scout and to make informed deductions as things went along. So I need to talk about the map generation.
I created a standard 40% pangaea map in the editor. I moved a few of the start locations a bit, including the player's start. I spaced the AI's out then added two extra AI's in the no-mans-land gaps. The Ottomans and India went into those gaps, with the Egyptians and Mongols moved slightly, west and south respectively. I also shifted the starts for the Americans, Iros, and the player's China all west or northwest slightly to give the player more room and a smaller front to defend. The smaller front is a mixed blessing. You get to concentrate your defenses, but the incoming can be so thick it gets very hard to advance if you fall behind the tech curve.
I had to add additional resources for the extra two civs, and I wanted to make sure the player had potential access to at least three iron, in case some dried up. There were NONE in the player's area to start, so I added two there, and added one more on a mountain north of the Iro start. That one would be a stretch, for sure, but doable later if the others dried up. (Sorry, Sulla, I didn't put that one next to Kyoto, but thanks for crediting me with the idea). I took the one horse that was close to Beijing and turned it into two horses on the fringes. I moved the rubber, too. I also added the tiny island off the east coast. Then I shuffled the lux a bit, added more saltpeter and other resources in very convenient spots to help some of the poorer looking AI's. Finally, I sprinking some more high ground around in the region NW of Beijing, to give that area more strategic variance. I also added the lake between China and Iroquois and I had to give the Americans some wheat so they would stand a chance. I chose each opponent and where to put them, but I bunched them largely in the way the usual Cultural distribution does, leaving the bright colors in the west. I made sure to put the Iro's next door, to give those mounted warriors a shot, and also the Mongols because they were right there on top of China historically.
My "spoilerized" game plan involved two key points I learned from Urug in Epic Six: expand TOWARD the enemy as quickly as possible and go light on infrastructure, very heavy on units, so that plenty of more leaders pop and you can actually take out some of your foes.
Thus, my game began by building a barracks first, so that I never built any nonvet units this game.
I wasn't kidding when I said I was going to expand toward the enemy. This location would need some forts up on those hills, but that wouldn't be a problem. I had lots of success in that regard in Epic Six, so I knew how to manage it. I didn't plan for that point to be the front for too long anyway. Like in Epic Six, I'd move forward at some point and keep on moving forward. How quickly was the question.
Also note that I did not chop the game forest. I wanted to focus on troop production, get out there early with some Pillage-n-Park on at least one neighbor, maybe two. Take down some of their cities really early, when I could stunt their growth curve. I would chop that forest down as soon my first leader got me the Pyramids and I could make better use of the extra food.
My first offensive was a single archer. He met with great success, catching the Iro second city defended by a single regular warrior.
Ooh, a settler in the city, too. Got me a 2fer on that deal. Slaves! Oh yes. They headed on back toward China. My archer parked to heal up.
Sadly, a few turns later the enemy escorted another settler into the area with a regular spear. Blah. I didn't want to attack across the river, though, and I didn't want to move and let them up onto the hill, that's for sure. So I waited there, and instead of moving more, the Iro's plopped down on the grass across the river. I cross the river with my archer, then attacked, and I lost 0-4. Oh well. I had gotten my value out of that first attack.
Right on the heels of that early effort I sent my Pillage-n-Park force: a vet spear and two vet warriors. Unfortunately, just like that, the Iro's had iron working, had the iron next to their capital connected, and forced me to stay out of their territory. I parked on a mountain NE of their capital but the swords didn't attack. Then they had some archers, probably whipped, and my force was outnumbers. I did manage to kill two of their archers, but their swords retreated to guard their capital. They were almost playing intelligently. I couldn't believe it.
My expeditionary force was useless where it was, so I decided to try to go after a different civilization. I sent them on westward. There wasn't a lot to pillage yet, though, so mostly they moved around, explored a bit, then engaged with some American and Babylonian forces. I killed two more archers with my warriors, promoting one to elite and then winning my first elite battle with him. I also beat off a bowman with my spear and he promoted to elite. I won a second elite battle vs a regular warrior with the elite spear on OFFENSE, and another warrior killed by my elite warrior. Now keep track here. That's three elite victories on offense so far.
Eventually I found an iron on a mountain between Bab and Iro territory and parked there. I hoped to draw some fire, or else at least disrupt activity in the area, and I kinda sorta accomplished that, but enh. I was pretty far from home by then. I ended up doing some pillaging with the warriors, including trying to sneak back in to Iro territor with my elite warrior. That didn't work out, and I soon lost both the warriors. The spear was still parked on the iron, where he watched some war activity between the Babs vs the Americans and Persians. Minor stuff, really. One American city was razed and the Persians grabbed the land.
Meanwhile, before all that unfolded, before I got over to that western iron, I was already running into my neighbors.
You can see I had four cities at that point. That's all without any granaries. My game plan was to get some early elite action and get some leaders going in a hurry, to use my military to grab several early wonders. I was expanding a little, and maybe I should have built a granary in the capital. But I could have two spears and an archer for those shields. You know?
I made one serious mistake, though. I misgauged how far I was from the iron sources. I raced on to early iron but was so busy with the initial rush at the Iro's, killing their city, taking slaves, trying to completely shut them down with the Pillage-n-Park, that I didn't expand toward the iron quickly enough. And now I was kinda locked in. I realized I needed to use a colony to grab the iron, but there was a fairly long road to build and at 1000BC I was only now getting the workers into place for that.
It was kind of painful peeling settlers off without granaries, but I knew that as soon as I got to the Pyramids, my growth would absolutely explode. Each new city I had would have an instant granary and I'd be able to expand in my back lines pretty much farmer gambit style. I had it all laid out. My plan could not fail.
Yeah! Another elite. I've got six cities and the seventh about to seal my front line on that sweet hill spot above the capital, just across the river. I've got my cities all way spaced out, too. No ICS-ing or dense builds for me, no sir. Each of these cities would be major powers later in the game.
The clock's kind of ticking away, I realize. I could have started on swords a couple dozen turns sooner if I had gone after the iron as soon as the tech came in. That turned out to be a down side of expaning toward the enemy. Yeah, my position was kick ass, but... um... I didn't handle the logistics properly, and my civ was stalled waiting on the iron. As soon as that iron's online, I need to go massive sword production, like all swords all the time, get me half a dozen elites and a few leaders, and then I can continue on with the original plan to smash the Iroquois quickly.
Oh and here's some good news:
Lots of new contacts! Oh yeah, baby, send me your starting units. Send me your regular warriors and archers. Feed my leader machine. Woo!
I got the colony up in 800BC. A little slowish, maybe, but in plenty of time. Here come my swords!
Beijing's at 10SPT, Canton's at 8. Train that army, baby, yeah.

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