Civilization 5: 2021-03-28 campaign

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Main: Civilization 5

This is a redo of the 2019-08-23 campaign, starting from turn 107.


Ancient Era[edit]

  • Archery Found on turn 2
  • Mining completed on 83
  • Pottery completed on 33
  • Calendar completed on 65
  • Writing 109

Classical Era[edit]

  • Philosophy 174 (179 on previous run)
  • Animal Husbandry Found 43
  • Masonry 183 (204 on previous run)
  • Bronze Working 193 (192 on previous run)
  • The Wheel 201 (213 on previous run)
  • Trapping 209 (233 on previous run)
  • Sailing 223 (224 on previous run)
  • Construction 218 (262 on previous run)
  • Mathematics 232 (263 on previous run)
  • Optics 242 (postponed on previous run)
  • Engineering 253 (283 on previous run)
  • Horseback Riding 262 (229 on previous run)
  • Drama and Comedy 281 (352 on previous run)
  • Currency 279 (341 on previous run)
  • Iron working (299 on previous run)

Renaissance era[edit]

  • Acoustics 411 (419 on previous run)
  • Astronomy.
  • Steel 406 stolen
  • Guilds. 425
  • Machinery postponed in order to get Chivalry, so I could steal banking. Got it 447.
  • Chivalry. 440, slightly postponed.
  • Physics. 456
  • Gun Powder. 473
  • Chemistry. 489
  • Printing Press. 482, stolen
  • Banking 440, stolen
  • Economics. 502



  • Tradition (+3 Culture, -25% border expansion cost)
  • Honor (barb bonus)
  • Liberty (+1 Culture per city)
  • Citizenship (more and better workers)
  • Piety (faster Shrine and Temple build time)

At this point, I'll get two policies at the same time thanks to Oracle. So I need to choose between Discipline & Military Caste or two piety policies. If I don't take Organized Religion now, I'll lose a 4 faith per turn for about 90 turns, costing me a Pagoda. Since I can build them, I'll go for them first, even though I have to build a great Prophet first. However, getting that Great Prophet will actually be easier with the +4 Faith. Culture will suffer for a bit, but it something that I can catch up to, but considering I can a limited time before faith based buildings get expensive, I'm in a bigger rush for that.

  • 203 (Oracle): Organized Religion (+1 Faith from Shrines and Temples)
  • Mandate of Heaven (-20% faith cost)
  • 262: Meritocracy (+1 global happiness per connected city)
  • Discipline (+15% melee strength)
  • Military Caste (+1 happiness and +2 culture per city that has a soldier)


  • 174: Reached Philosophy 5 turns earlier than previous run due having more gold spent settlers.
  • 203: Finished Oracle in record time. Looks like nobody built the Pyramids. Considering it takes a Freedom to build it, there is a good chance that whoever could build it wasn't able to, so that leaves it open to be built by me.
  • 209: Sailing would give me the 2nd trade route, but I'm not going to build a 2nd caravan, and I'm not ready to build the Cargo Ship yet. So I'll do Construction first.
  • 230: I'm way ahead in tech compared to my previous run. With Engineering, I got my 3rd trade route, but I don't see any reason to rush for Metal Casting the way things look at the moment. Better to get Civil Service first in order to get benefits that don't require addition buildings.


  • Ended since I fell behind my previous run, even though I was way ahead momentarily
  • There is two reasons I was way ahead. I didn't take a single city from the French and instead opted to take huge peace settlements from them. This greatly boosted my economy. Second, I took two large cities from the Romans early on, and this gave a big boost to my science.
  • However, the big city ended costing more than it was worth, becoming a happiness sink. From this, I understood it's better to give conquered cities right away to other civilizations after having sold most of it's buildings, in order to use the happiness to build new cities of my own. Give them preferably to a civilization that is about to surrender and have a road connection to its capital, so you get the monetary benefits of having that city. You can also try to manage it so that you get liberator bonus when you take back that city in the future and give it back to its original owner. Don't forget to pillage as much as possible while taking over the city.
  • What you want is for the enemy to have huge cities that generate a log of gold, and have very few buildings that drain gold. Pillage land prevents growth. By taking money and happiness as settlement you stifle the enemies growth as the enemy can't build new cities. The cities being where they are rather than being burned down allows them to collect gold and happiness that you get and goes towards building new cities of your own.
  • Going for two holy policies after the openers was a great choice. The early faith was wonderful.
  • I managed to get a religious building in my religion, and two of my neighbors too. This ended in my being able to build Mosque, Pagoda and Monastery in all my cities. Even though I was ecstatic about the possibilities, it ended being a failure. It took way to much faith make sure all new cities got both of the foreign building before my own. My own was the pagoda, so this ended in me spending a lot of faith in giving them a monastery and then a changing the city to the other religion in order to give them a mosque. After this, I had almost no faith, but I could wait for building the last building until my own religion naturally flipped the city. This resulted in me spending a lot of faith building the shitty monastery (+1 faith, culture and happiness). Frankly, the monastery wasn't worth it. Why not waiting for the monastery to last, and instead building the pagoda and mosque first? First, that would require me to select the monastery in religion. And there are better options. Secondly, you simply wont get enough faith to ever build that third building if you keep building new cities and the passage of time keeps making religious buildings more expensive.
  • The monastery is simply not worth the faith to build it. It will take 460 turns plus the cost of producing a missionary to change religion to have it return the faith invested in it, so it's a net faith loss. So you basically get +1 happiness and +1 culture for a huge faith loss, and that is faith you simply do not have, so it's out of question.
  • Having a neighbor Mosques is optimal, and they have a great early faith output, and you don't need more than the one faith they output during the early phase of the city. What is left is the pagoda. Is it worth building?
  • The Pagoda can either be built by somebody else, and in that case, you need to have a missionary flip the city. The missionary has the same cost as the Pagoda and can flip two cities, so that means that if you have another religion provide the pagoda, it's faith cost is practically increased by 50%. The early pagoda costs 420 Faith, so 630. That means it takes 315 turns for it to return the faith. That's a per-city cost, so after hitting the first increase, they will cost 720*1,5= 1080, taking 500 turns to pay back the faith. And that's a per city cost. So either get 5 pagoda or get 10 000 faith. For that cost, I can pop almost 4 great prophets, netting way more faith and culture than the pagoda would have generated. Considering that, it's not worth having a second neighbor having Pagodas.
  • What about you having Pagodas? You pay faith and eventually get them back, so it's basically a loss. And playing India and being aggressive with taking happiness through peace settlements and city states, I think the missing happiness can be managable if you abstain from puppeting enemy cities, and aggressively pump money into food giving city states in order to have your own cities grow to the point of providing global happiness through the Indian hidden happiness mechanics. This means that selecting Choral Music (+2 Culture) instead of Pagodas, you get basically a Pagoda with no faith investment, without the happiness. Is that good enough? An early city gets:
    • +1 from Goddess of Love (total 1)
    • +1 from Tradition (total 2)
    • +1 from Liberty (total 3)
    • +1 from Honor (total 4)
    • +1 from Mosque (total 5)
    • +2 from Colosseum (total 7)
    • +1 from Stone Works/Circus (total 8)
  • With 8 happiness, we get a city with 12 citizens that generate 6 unhappiness, so +2 that cancels out the 3.6 unhappiness from the city itself, but it's still stuck at -1,6 global unhappiness. Accounting for the -5% from the Liberty policy, we are down to -1 unhappiness. And with no further sources of happiness, we climb back up 0.475 unhappiness per citizen at that point. So we need even more happiness. We can get two more from Religious Center, and reaching 20 citizens, we get another one from the Tradition policy, for a total 11 of Happiness. So 20 citizens would then generate 10 - 5% = 9.5 unhappiness. Adding 3.6 from the city, we reach 13.1 unhappiness. So we are at total -2.1 unhappiness net per city at 20 citizen. With modern tech, that is turned into a net plus.
  • But how is the situation before reaching modern tech? Taking those maximum 11 happiness, and removing the one from the 20th citizen, we are back to 10 happiness. We can get that at 15 citizens. 15 citizens generate 7.5 - 5% = 7.125 + 3.6 from city = 10.725, so the city is at minus 0.725 happiness at 15 citizens. That's good enough, we aren't in need of the 2 additional happiness from the pagoda.
  • Do we benefit from swapping the Mosque for a Pagoda, so each city provides 7 Faith instead of 8, but they have an additional point of happiness? With the Pagoda, each a small city can have 6 happiness (Goddess: +1, Liberty: +1, Honor: +1, Religious Center: +2, Mosque: +1). With 6 Happiness we need 9 citizens to unlock it. The 10th citizen unlocks the Tradition happiness, but we can still only use 6 happiness at 10 citizens (10*67% rounded down = 6), but at 11 we can use 7 happiness, and at 12, we can use 8 happiness. So there is no need to build any happiness buildings with India until the 12th citizen, maybe starting building it at the 11th citizen. Going Pagoda instead of Mosque would increase this from 12 citizen to 14 citizen.
  • If we stick with the Mosque and Religious Center, and build a Colosseum at 12 citizen, then we have 9 Happiness, and that is good enough until the 14th Citizen, the 15th enabling the 10th happiness. If we get another one from Stone Works, we are at 10 happiness and good until the 16th Citizen, the 17th opening up the 11th Happiness that we don't have.
  • Honestly, 10 happiness with Religious Center, Mosque and no Pagoda good enough for the early game. A Pagodas happiness is useful after having reached 17 citizens... well, okay, you can get to 16 and still have pretty long before getting tech to carry you over that threshold if you go heavy on getting food from city states. So we are basically forced to stop expanding beyond 16 citizens if we go for only Mosque and no Pagoda. At 16 citizens, we have 8 - 5% = 7.6 unhappiness, with another 3.6 from the city, that will be 11.2, with the city providing 10 happiness, only going further 0.45 negative per citizen from there on. So citizen 17, 18, and 19 will cost unhappiness that can't be helped. At 20, we have 13.1 unhappiness (previous calculation) and 11 Happiness with a Stone Work and two happiness from Tradition. At 20, we could have 13 Happiness, but we are stuck at 11. So there is a case for having Pagoda, Mosque and Religious Center to maximize happiness until the 20th citizen. The 21th would open the 14th happiness that we wouldn´t have even with Pagoda, Mosque and Religious Centers.
  • If we space the cities as dense as possible, then each city would have access to about 10 hexes. With mid game specialists, you could argue that 20 citizens is plenty, and start killing food production by then. So this means that the religious belief that gives 2 food from Shrines and temples is not needed. The religious belief Religious Centers is mandatory. So the question is, should the 2nd one be the one that gives +2 Culture or Pagoda?
  • We have already concluded that having two buildings from other religions is a no go. And only one religion is sub-optimal. So the question is do we want only Pagoda and Choral Music (+2 Culture), or Pagoda and Mosque. If both, we want to build Mosque first and then the Pagoda. If only one, we want the Pagoda from neighbors and have Choral Music for our own religion. So the question is, do we want Pagoda for our own religion, or Choral Music? Both Choral Music and Pagoda give +2 Culture, so the question the boils down to; do we want to build only one building for +2 happiness, or spend twice as much faith on two buildings for +3 Happiness. Or, do we want to spend 460 faith per city to get +3 Faith per turn and +1 Happiness per city?
  • It will take 180 turns to get back the faith spent on an early mosque, and we would end up with +1 Happiness at the end of it. If we don't do that and we end up with too much faith, then the alternative way to spend faith if we can't build a a mosque would be to have Choral Music for 6 Culture in three cities, and then spend 1200 faith on a great Prophet that would give +6 Faith and +3 Culture, for a total of 6 faith and 9 culture, instead of 9 faith and 6 culture in 3 cities, without the +3 happiness from the 3 Mosques.
  • The optimal is probably going for Pagoda and Religious Centers, and have a neighbor with Mosques. Give new cities the neighboring religion with a missionary that has 250 strength and then just wait until pressure from your other cities flip it to your religion. What you are then doing is spending 1.5 times the cost of building a mosque to get the +2 culture and +1 Happiness. That's optimal in my calculation.
  • In the next try, I need to plan for new citizens much better. Each time calculate if the new citizen will enable more happiness, and make sure the city can provide that happiness at the time the new citizen arrives, and if not, slow down the growth of the city.
  • Caravans. I need to build land Caravans as soon as they become available. It takes for ever to build a sea caravan, and you need to have granary in a sea city as well. Probably, the best way is to build land caravans, and when you finally are ready for a sea caravan, just disband a land caravan and buy a sea caravan for cash. The extra output should make the gold expenditure worth it. Also, build workshops in sea cities, and will increase the the pace of building new ships.
  • Caravans asap, buying cargo ships, workshops in coastal cities
  • Again, make sure to build the Mughal fort earlier! Since we are going for Religious Centers, Pagoda and Mosque, we can delay building the Colosseum. That extra time can be used building the Mughal fort. The walls will require 225 and the fort will require 450, for a total of 675 production in order to get +2 Culture. The Sistine Chapel requires 8 Culture in order to provide +2 Culture. With +2 from Monument, +4 from Pagoda and Mosque and +2 from Honor, we got the 8. +1 from Liberty gets no bonus, and adding +2 from the fort will not be enough either, but having the fort will cause the Amphitheater to provide +1, for a total of 15 Culture per city. So after having built a workshop, library and Marketplace, production in the inland cities should be directed toward increasing culture generation from +10 to +15. This will pay off even better when Neuschwanstein gets constructed.