I decided to try my first game. This won’t be a play by play of each turn, just some cool stuff from my playtime. I chose the Warlord difficulty which is one below the ‘Normal’ difficulty of Prince. Small map, Continents, 5 other Civs.
I chose to play as Japan. Japan’s special skill is called Bushido, and their special units are the Samurai, and the Zero. The Samurai is a good unit in the early to mid part of the game, and I’m hoping the Zero is a nice advantage during the latter stages. Bushido allows your units to fight at full strength, even when damaged, and it sounded very appealing to me.
I knew with a Continents map there would be a couple of large land masses and a couple of smaller ones. Each large landmass would have 2 to 3 Civs, and several City-States. One land mass would be a small island nation. I wound up on a large landmass with 2 other Civs, George (USA) and Bismark (Germany). I took over the eastern part of the continent, while Germany took the west. This hemmed in George to the north. The black areas represent 4 City-States. Rio in the east, Almaty in the west, with Tyre and Helsinki to the north. What I’ve learned about City-States is basically they let you rent their land for a fee. There are different types of City-States: Maritime, Militaristic, and Cultural. There may be others, but I haven’t encountered them yet. Maritime City-States send you food. Militaristic build you units, and Cultural send you culture points to buy Policies.
This is around turn 140. I have 5 cities as does Bismark. George has 3. I spent the early game concentrating on establishing my borders and securing resources. Shortly thereafter, I found an Iron deposit on the peninsular just northeast of Germany’s east most city. Iron is one of the most important resources in the game, needed for Catapults and Swordsmen. But for Japan, it lets me build Samurai, and I get one Samurai per Iron mine. I needed that Iron. It was also important to keep it out of Bismark’s and George’s greedy little hands.
So I blockaded the iron to keep other units from getting close and marched a settler up there. Unfortunately, the only way to get him there was through American territory. So I had to make an Open Borders agreement with George. I didn’t like it, and I kept watch for him moving troops near my cities, but lucky for old George, he didn’t try to backstab me. I secured the Iron and was very happy to have it.
After a while, I got tired of paying of Rio (the city state nearest to me) for what was essentially MY land. It was time to make them a vassal state. The only problem was that Bismark had been trading with them. If I took Rio, that would not make Bismark happy. I attacked Rio anyway. One of the options you have when you take a city is to setup a puppet ruler. The advantage is that this causes much less unhappiness in your Civ, but the trade off is, you can’t control what that city makes. So I had my little puppet.
Not too long after, Bismark calls me up and basically says, ‘this island ain’t big enough for the two of us’ and declares war on me. I was able to stalemate him, and then bring units from the south to put pressure on Dortmund, a city guarding a mountain pass. He pressed for peace and offered me everything he had. I graciously accepted.
But now I had two problems. One, I knew Bizzy was going to attack me again once he recovered, and two, I was way behind Darius (Persia). He was on the other large continent and was taking out the Civs there. He was also ahead of me in gold, and science. Not a good combination. The game might actually already be lost at this point.
I wiped out Germany, but man did I mess up. I annexed the cities, just like I would have in the old Civs. This left my empire with massive unhappiness and wrecked my economy. I figured I would come out of it quickly, like I would in Civ IV. Not so much in CivV. It took me a very long time to rectify the damage I did.
Now I realize that technically I could go back and load and save game, but that seems to me to be against the spirit of the game, so I very rarely do that.
Here’s hoping I can somehow catch up to Darius and still make a gambit of it in the end game.