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The Power of Workers...

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EVERY SINGLE TILE within my city radii, save a few mountains that are unworkable until rails/hospitals anyway, is completely improved. At the early date of 300 AD! THAT, folks, is the power of Industriousness.

It's also the power of setting up and micromanaging a worker factory. Most of my 40 workers presently joined into the towns, giving me that impressive roster of large cities. Carthage is producing six workers for itself; once those are finished they'll join right back into the city to jump it instantly to size 12, much faster than waiting for city growth.

I also decided to keep the city of !, and just build workers and settlers out of it to join to other cities. I'll disband this city once hospitals get built.

Brokerage #12: 740 gold to France for Invention, Invention + 135 to England for Education, and to Korea for Chivalry. This is too easy.

Brokerage #13: 1000 gold to England for Banking, Banking to Greece for Gunpowder. I've bought ONE tech at full price this entire game. Folks, if you're wondering how we Deity players get such an advantage, there it is. You better have a really, really good reason if you ever buy a tech at full price without a brokerage deal.

I change lots of cities to banks, and decide to put a bit of that 7,000 cash to use by rushing colosseums and switching to banks, letting the cities finish the builds on their own. The cash spent doing that will pretty much earn itself back by having the banks 6-8 turns sooner. I claim First Bank Constructed in 410 AD.

Sistine Chapel, Sunny T's, and Leonardo's all complete on schedule, killing the cascade dead. France alone got to carry over to Copernicus, but one city can not a cascade make. The path to Smith's looks clear, and I've already got another two cities doing wonder prebuilds. It's pretty interesting how this worked out; because I missed the Great Library, I was able to get Sun Tzu's, and from there control the entire cascade. I think this is the first time I ever built Sun Tzu's from scratch, besides in the crazy Epic 14 game. It's not that easy a wonder to get, since it can be hard to prebuild, and it comes in the time frame where the AI's high-difficulty cost discounts make the biggest difference and the player is usually farthest behind in everything.

Well, here's what might be a crazy move: in 420 AD, I pay monopoly price for Music Theory. My second wonder-prebuilding city has hit the limit of its biggest prebuild, a cathedral, and I need a wonder to swap it to. Control of the cascade is worth a 700 gold cost differential between monopoly and late-civ. These two wonders are targeted for Smith's and Magellan's. I also start a third city on a cathedral prebuild, to hopefully take Bach's as well. That's all the wonders I need worry about until the Industrial ones.

A few turns later, resource trading with France opens up. Well, that means they've got Navigation. And England too - great, Navigation isn't a monopoly. Iron exported to France gets me Astronomy, and Saltpeter + Ivory exported to England gets me Navigation. Ok, neither was a brokerage, but both techs didn't cost me anything financial to acquire.

France also has cash to pay for my Wines and Ivory, and I send them her way. Joanie's mostly been the research leader, and I hope the luxury exports let her keep doing well in that area. I want the AIs to keep researching; the faster I finish the better a Treasury Bonus I'll get at game's end.

Astronomy to Korea then gets me Dyes - the only luxury available for import from the other continent. Well, it does let me drop my luxury tax to 0% at last, boosting my income even further to 661 per turn.

Another few turns later, Brokerage #14: Navigation + Ivory to Korea for Economics. Economics to Spain for Printing Press. Two more techs that cost me nothing. I had never before counted how many brokerage deals I make over the course of a game, but it really is a lot. Basically, you get one out of every two techs for free or at a great discount. That's really, really hard to beat for improving your economic position.

How does one get all those? Persistence in checking diplomacy every single turn. You don't have to do it right away for a few turns after new technology appears, and you can usually get away with only checking the richest AI every turn (they'll buy in as soon as any new tech appears.) But when you have a feeling that tech will appear soon, or there's already a tech on the table that's gotten around to some of the AI civs but not all, you better be watching that diplomatic screen like a hawk and pounce on any opportunities.

Presently, Magellan's Voyage completes, for another 2000 points.

And Brokerage #15: Wines + 880 gold to Spain for Chemistry. Chemistry, Furs, Spices, 180 gold to Korea for Democracy.


Do I revolt?

Of course, I'm usually one of the most vocal opponents of wasting time switching from Republic to Democracy. But let's check it out here. It doesn't really waste any time, since we have to wait for the AIs to do all the research. It would cost my 685/turn income for about 6 turns. Call it 4,000. There's a bonus on the table of +8% Treasury Bonus if your entire Golden Age occurs in Democracy, as opposed to 2% while in Republic. So - am I going to have more than <FX: calculator noises> 66,000 gold in my treasury at the end of the game? I think that's a near-certainty. Certainly enough so that the benefits of being in Democracy will be more than worthwhile.

I do have 7 turns until Smith's Trading Company is due, but I'm not worried; no rival city has been building for longer than about 15 turns, and they cascaded to Bach's before Smith's. I am worried about losing Bach's, which is due in 14 and will be the last wonder cascaded to.

Looking at the competitors for Bach's, I think London is the only one with a credible chance. I investigate, and that city has Bach's due in - 23 turns. But that could drop; the city is working FIVE unimproved mountain tiles (!) It'll be a close call... but I think I'll take the risk to get into Democracy. I do have the ability to put Leptis Magna into food deficit to pull a few more shields, and the city can actually accumulate some extra food during the anarchy to facilitate that. (And there is Shakespeare's as a consolation prize if I miss.)

And also, I want a chance to get the Fastest Possible Workers effect you achieve with Industriousness and Democracy. Usually, Egypt is the only civ that gets to experience that.

I revolt in 630 AD. 6 turns of anarchy; could be worse.

(Of course, I did all that analysis before actually buying Democracy. I wouldn't waste cash on brokering for a useless tech. biggrin.gif 15x15)

When I get out of anarchy, my income has improved from 685 gold to 710. Yay corruption-fighting effect of Democracy. rolleyes.gif 15x15

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France declares war on England, which hands me an opportunity for Brokerage #16 a turn later: cash to England for Metallurgy, Metallurgy to France for Physics.

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Smith's finishes; another 2000 points. But Rheims cascades and finishes Bach's the same turn! Wow, one more turn of anarchy or one turn later of prebuilding, and I would've lost the most important wonder in this game. Either France got a whopper of a musketeer-induced Golden Age boost for that city, or a Great Leader. Then London gets to cascade and finish Shakespeare's before I have a chance to do so.

Well... I don't want to waste all those shields in Leptis Magna. I could buy Theory of Gravity and take Newton's, but I want to AVOID that wonder; I'd rather an AI have it to research faster. So, I set the city to the fewest shields it can pull and swap to a Palace; we'll see what happens. Next turn, France cascades to Newton's and completes that too.

And then some bad news comes. France gets allied against by Greece, and Greece also winds up at war with India. I want them all to keep researching, not start fighting...

But in 820 AD, I get to pull Brokerages #17 and #18. 1210 gold to France for Theory of Gravity. ToG to Korea for Magnetism. Both of those techs to Greece for Military Tradition. Industrial Age!

WOW, the scientific civs could not have done better for me! Korea got Steam Power. Greece got Medicine. And France researched Nationalism already! Well... I can't say buying any of them at monopoly price would be worthwhile. I'll wait a turn for them to trade around a little bit...

And next turn everybody's got the first two techs. Well, Furs + Spices + 1150 to Korea for Steam Power. 1600 gold to England for Medicine. France still has a monopoly on Nationalism. Yeah, I bought those two techs at full price; Steam Power is worth it to get immediately, and I want to make sure I can see Sanitation as soon as it becomes available.

Leptis Minor swaps to the Iron Works! Funny, I thought Sabratha would be my best Iron Works shot, with every one of its tiles eligible for coal. And unfortunately, Leptis won't get to fully exploit the rare wonder, since it's got seven water tiles and can't have enough food to reach size 20. Oh well. This city would turn out to be one of the more sad Iron Works towns in history; it only hit size 16, and wasn't even close to being my best shield-producing city.

Anyway, that last brokerage included Military Tradition, and we know what usually happens when I get my hands on that tech...

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