Sirian's Great Library - Strategies for Civilization III
RBCiv Epic Thirty-Five

Civilization: India
Difficulty: Emperor
World Size: Standard
Opponents: Seven
Land Mass: 30%
Land Shape: Continents
Version: PTW 1.27f
These are my results from Epic 35 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.
In this game, all players play the same map, but choose their own civ. I elected for a random civ and drew India.
Since this civ is not best suited for rapid military conquest, nor likely for research, I set my sights on either a diplomatic or cultural victory.
There were eight plains tiles and one grass in range of the start point, and we were promised a dry start. Ugh, not good. Also, this location was not on the coast, but I could see three hills, and beyond the southern one, water. That had to be salt water for this to be a dry start, so I decided to move to the coast and try for a 20k cultural victory. I sent my worker east, onto the grass tile. This uncovered two bonus grass. I moved the settler SE. The next turn, I sent the worker south onto the bonus grass to work the best tile. I moved the settler east onto the hill, and there I founded Delhi in 3900BC.
My game plan was simple. Although folks might think of Babylon as the best civ to go for a cultural win, they'd be wrong. Babs are the best for 100k, but not 20k. Better are India or Persia. Persia is probably the best. You get your land improved faster, cheap library/uni, and free techs, plus those immortals for kicking in your golden age as soon as you get to Republic. India starts with Alphabet, which is huge in getting to Literature quickly, plus being religious, they spend less down time in government swaps, get cheap temple going immediately, cheap cathedral, and an auto-goldenage from the Colossus. You might think that would be bad, but on Emperor with a dry start, everything rests on the Colossus and Great Library, which of all civs, India is best suited to grab. Just have to make sure you get bronze working early enough.
Still, this is some awful land. I would have in range a mere two bg tiles, three regular grass, a few hills, plains, and lots of water. No food bonuses. I'd have to stop to build both a granary and an aqueduct. And only two bg tiles, and no irrigation available early, and for god knows how long. This could get ugly. If I can get the Colossus and Great Library, then Hanging Gardens, Bach, and Shakespeare, I should be set. Sistine, Cop, and Newton/Shakespeare would also do.
I built my temple first, of course, to get the culture going immediately, then trained one warrior, then began a settler. Settler? Yes. My second city would be playing the role normally played by my capital: mother of my civ. Sneak out one settler early while my worker is still improving tiles. Maybe I should have researched pottery first, but I went straight for Bronze and colossus access. My exploring warrior met Koreans in 3000BC, and too late then to change my research to pottery. Guess wrong about my neighbors and then some! Oh well.
That dropped my bronze research costs a bit. My explorer found the east coast and turned north. My settler also headed due north. Ugh, not good. He walked into a large patch of hills and found no good spot to settle within the first ring, so he had to keep going. Found some wines in the hills, but still lots of bad terrain. Finally settled Bombay in the hills, in some very dry land. LOTS of hills, four wines, one cattle plains, a few plains, and a peek of coast for harbors. I found myself wishing my capital were at Bombay and the second city at Delhi, but oh well. The good news? I had the equivalent of three roaded, unmined bg tiles. The bad news? Slightly high corruption for distance, plus going to take forever to improve the land, so even this was poor land for my purposes. Perhaps I should have trained a second warrrior and scouted westward, too, but too late now.
I found the French to the northeast, and while there, ran into the Arabs, too. Neither of them had met Korea yet, so I got to do a little brokering and catch up on tech. I also had a minsci on writing underway.
Bah and phooey. Two commercial civs right next door, negating my "advantage" of knowing alphabet to my cultural strategy. Maybe Persia would have been better here, but of course, I chose to play the hand I was dealt, and got dealt a strange hand!
When my whipped temple at Bombay expanded borders with the city still undefended, I nearly panicked. The expansion popped the hut on the cattle, and out came hostiles. Blah and phooey. Early luck not breaking my way here at all.
Bombay has a temple and granary, and has just started Colossus. Thankfully, both barbs took meager bits of gold and left my temple alone.
Korea and France both started settling in my direction. Blah. Nobody new appeared out of the fog to my west, so I had some hope of settling that way, though, and still getting a decent parcel of land.
Nothing much happened while I built the Colossus. Took me that long just to finish my minsci gambit, and build a warrior, a second worker and a granary out of Bombay.
Didn't finish Colossus until 1375BC? Sheesh. I've built the... oh wait. Uh, never mind, talk about that another time.
I started on the Pyramids as placeholder for the Great Library, and started on full steam research into Literature. The stupidest thing about a Colossus Golden Age is that the Colossus gives you bonus commerce, rendering the bonus of the GA wasted. However, I did pull another 4spt in my capital, and that could be crucial in such a poor position to securing the Great Library. At least if I get that, my PATHETIC economy will be dragged along into the middle ages while I save up cash. Here's the situation, still as a 2CC, at the end of the golden period.
Yes, I just managed to finish literature research. And yes, in the minimap you can see that mapmaking has already been learned. Blah!
And yes, at least I'm about to grab ONE city's worth of land east of Bombay. Sheesh, this map is cramped. Somehow I thought I'd do better on expansion with this game plan, but the dryness and barrenness of the land did not cooperate.
What's worse, Korea brought a ship around my south coast and landed a settler pair to my WEST. Oh gosh, if there is one thing I am sick of about Civ3, it's the cheat the AI's get on seeing all the resources. What is about to be poached out from under me? In the forests and plains, that can only be uranium, rubber, or horses. Or... maybe they are just hot for my furs. I activate my warrior and send him over there to try to stop Korea from settling too close to Delhi. Well, that didn't work at all, but incredibly, Korea PASSES UP the chance to poach my fur and KEEPS GOING north. MUST BE rubber or uranium up there, and maybe horses, too. And that is NOT something I should know or be able to deduce at this point in the game, therefore it is at least somewhat broken.
Despite sending my fourth city's settler westward as fast as possible, Korea manages to get a second settler pair there ahead of me! ARRGH! In the shot below, I wanted to settle where the warrior is fortified, to be on the coast. Instead I am forced to plop down right where you see the settler standing. This is awful, just awful. What? Is there iron or saltpeter in the hills there, too?
There was even an Arabian pair heading that way! I thought Korea might take the last eligible tile out on the peninsula, but apparently not. They walked home.
I scored the Library, keeping my somewhat threadbare gameplan alive.
I ordered a library next. Buncha techs popped, too. YEP. Those Korean bastards poached my horses (in range of the start tile!) right out from under my nose. I bet THAT doesn't happen to anybody else.
Hmm. No iron in range! Anybody who chose Persia or Rome for early attack could be screwed. Iro or Egypt should thrive, though.
Well, I still get the last laugh on Korea. Don't need them steenkin horses to build my jumbos. Too bad my civ is such a shrimp. Ha! Jumbo Shrimp! In curry sauce.
Wow, next turn, Vikes scored the Pyramids. Never heard of them people, must be on another continent.
I've got a pickle for my next settler. Do I head north and grab the hole in the desert? That would be safer in terms of land grab. Or do I poach the desert southeast of Bombay and TRY to get the jump on Korea in culture at the border? Decisions, decisions. I opted for the culture war first, and then I missed out on the other site altogether, as France grabbed it! Blah, what a nasty choice that was. Not sure I made the right choice, either. Oh well.
In terms of land grab, this is feeling remarkably like my Epic 30, which was a Deity game. I started out spread out, thought I'd get good land, had sites in my first ring poached, had to settle one city in a sucky location because I had to plop him down suddenly, and now I'm forced to squeeze in half-cities to make use of the few tiles left to me! Did I botch the land grab phase with the wrong metastrategy? Or was this just plain old NASTY for a try at a 20k culture? At least now I'm in Republic.
Why do I get the feeling this is going to be a long and difficult game?

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