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Friends and Foes

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Just before I decided to conquer the Dutch, I'd built my Forbidden Palace in Lagos, which was a bit of a mistake. This was my strongest hammer city after the capital, and should've gotten the Moai Statues / Iron Works combo. And the FP should've been built in the direction of Holland instead.

Well, let's clean up after that as best we can: Moai / Iron is going in my next next best hammer city which is Evora (bottom right under the scoreboard.) And I can relocate the actual Palace to Dutch Island. This has a sneaky effect: instead of paying colony maintenance for 6 Dutch cities, those will now count as the "homeland" and I'll be charged colonial expenses only for my four true homeland cities.

Presently, I lost GP Roulette in Lisbon, missing the 45% Merchant chance in favor of a 30% Artist. Well, all I could do was max out the city at 4 Merchants and hope for Fred's Fish, while farming over the ivory camps for food to support them. And that means pause Medicine for Electricity to start heading for Mass Media.

So, now I've got a buttload of vassals ready to vote for me in the election, but I've still got to work out how I'm actually going to win it. Sid's Sushi would be quite nice to pump my populations, but I'm not going to be near 60% of world pop all by myself; currently it's only 29%. It looks like Caesar is to be my opponent, barring some kind of radical world realignment. Twould really behoove me to win any available votes from Victoria, Napoleon, Isabella, or Suleiman. To that end, I can run Representation to please the first two, and Theocracy to please the latter. I did that presently, eating three turns of anarchy for the switch.

That got Saladin to Friendly, and my thought was to sign a Defensive Pact to further boost relations, and then I should be able to change away from Hinduism and keep him friendly. But he wouldn't go for it!

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I am completely at a loss here - how can Friendly ever be "we don't like you enough"? According to the XML, Saladin will only reject a DP at Cautious or lower, meaning even Pleased should be good enough to sign up. I totally don't get it?

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Hey, Apostolic Open Borders. Sounds great to me - that'll open up Caesar and Napoleon who are too pissy to do it. More trade routes. Yes, I still have the Great Lighthouse working; the cumulative payoff from that wonder is just absurd. It's generated something like 5 commerce x 2 trade routes x 15 cities x 200 turns x 50% multiplier buildings = FORTY FIVE THOUSAND units of economy, on a tiny investment of 300 hammers. I pity anyone who didn't get the GL on this map.

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Napoleon spun off his island into Sitting Bull as a colony, which had a potential huge impact on the final result. That population loss took him out of the running for my election opponent, making that much more likely to be Rome.

power-1706ad.jpg 626x491Also, here's the power graph. Napoleon was going nuts, and had been in WHEOOH for a while but hadn't declared war on anybody. Then he broke off his colony, severely stunting his own power. Hey AI's left hand, way to not know what the AI's right hand is doing.

My Representation civics choice didn't work out as anticipated. You only get the favorite civic diplomacy bonus if the AI has the civic too, and Caesar, Victoria, and Napoleon were all stuck in HR, refusing to adopt their own favorite civic! And they Didn't Like Me enough to take a hint! Argh!

OK, this was disturbing enough to take a search on Civfanatics, which turned up post #3 in this thread. So it seems that AIs take the average of their attitude towards you and all your vassals. With this many vassals, such an average will pretty much always regress to Cautious.

Next question is whether that holds true for the actual diplomatic election vote. If so, then the only victory path is going to be to conquer to back-door domination. Well, let's just get on ahead to that United Nations and see what happens.

(BTW, Apostolic Palace victory seems out of the question. With it being Caesar's religion, I do not have 75% of the Hindu population of the world, not to mention that spreading Hinduism to eight colony vassals would be a gigundo headache.)

I had still carefully avoided Corporation - no sense expiring the Great Lighthouse until I was ready to found a corp. That finally happened now with my old capital spawning a 70% Merchant after running four merchants for the last 30 turns, and Sid's Sushi finally arrived. After importing the world's seafood supply as usual, +24 food in every city should help my population for the diplomatic election.

I had no happiness trouble at all even with most of the AIs in Emancipation. Nine vassals (including Holland) and a full boat of resources added up to plenty of happy for everybody.

colony9.jpg 641x462Colony number nine.

isabella-general.gif 321x42Hehe, Isabella isn't at war with anybody. Somebody's having fun with privateers.

There were still yet more barbarian cities in the arctic, and I sent a galleon with riflemen to capture a pair of them. I wanted to make this colony vassal #10, but the game only gave the option to liberate each city to my other vassal already on that island. In fact, now I can't liberate any cities at all, not even the islands I still owned close to home. Is there a limit of colony civs that can spawn in a game? Well, I did give away those cities; they wouldn't do any good for me.

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A bit later, I realized that we were now at the limit of 18 civs in a game. OK, so no more colonies.

1776ad-deals.jpg 544x328So I kept researching on up to Mass Media. I was still uneasy about Napoleon's WHEOOH, but he never declared war on anybody. I jumped a bit when about a zillion deal cancellations popped up at the same time, but no war horns sounded. Silly AIs. But all those resource cancellations did gain me back about 400 gpt in corporate payments.

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Election time...

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Awesome! The secretarial election showed that I have quite a bit of support! (It's a bit messy to read...) No fewer than FOUR of my important rivals voted for me - Napoleon, Isabella, Caesar, and Saladin. OK, that tells me that diplomatic voting doesn't consider their attitudes towards my vassals, so I might have a real good chance at a real easy diplomatic exit.

Remember what I said before about the food graph being a proxy for voting eligibility? It held true here. Victoria somehow shot past Caesar in food production and therefore population, and became my opponent. I don't know how that happened, I didn't see her gaining any territory, but it did.

Here comes the victory election...

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No dice. Only Saladin among freemen voted for me (everybody else there are my vassals.) And I'm still 400 votes away from what I need.

So, how can I go about repairing this. Out of Napoleon, Isabella, Caesar, and Suleiman, I need approximately any two votes.

Unfortunately, this just isn't going to work. Caesar's at +6 net with shared religion, but I can't get any more unless he adopts Representation. Isabella I think I can get by switching to Free Religion, but that loses me Saladin (+6 brothers of faith) and any shot at Caesar. Suleiman is also a no go - his civic is Org Rel, but taking that loses me Theocracy and thus both Saladin and Isabella. Napoleon is completely unsalvageable, with -4 "traded with worst enemy" and a few other minuses.

Oh well, gotta conquer my way to back-door domination.

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