Civ V: Gods & Kings

Finished my first game of Gods & Kings last night (early this morning, really). Having fond memories of missionary spam in Civ IV, I decided to see whether I could do the same in Civ V. Missionaries are now bought with Faith points, so I had to go Faith-heavy. I chose to play the Celts, who get a +1 Faith bonus when their cities are adjacent to unimproved forest, +2 Faith if next to three unimproved forests. My starting location gave me plenty of forest, so I was the first to get a Pantheon just for sitting there with my one city.

Later, the Celts’ unique unit (a spearman replacement) also gets Faith for enemy kills. So I went around killing all the barbarians I could find. Combined with the new shrine building (which gives Faith) as well as nabbing Stonehenge (which now gives Faith rather than Culture), I was the first to pop a Great Prophet and establish my religion. Not being a warmonger type, I decided to tailor the religion to give me Culture - since I’d be building shrines and temples for the Faith points, I also made them give me some culture as well. I also chose to make cathedrals, which give some Faith and plenty of Culture. (The alternatives are to make mosques for plenty of Faith and some Culture or pagodas for balanced Faith and Culture.)

The Faith system does a pretty good job of staying out of the way if you don’t want to micromanage. You can tell it to automatically create missionaries, religious buildings, or wait for a Great Prophet. Later, when you get the more advanced policies, you can buy other great people with Faith (as well as getting them the old-fashioned way). I believe I cycled through the choices early on, creating a cathedral, a missionary, then another Great Prophet. I used the initial missionary to convert the local city states. I chose to pop my second Great Prophet to have foreign cities with my religion give me culture and to extend my religion’s influence by 30%. Much later, I used some other Great Prophets as sort of super-missionaries. If a city is already under the influence of another religion, sending a missionary in won’t do much, but the Great Prophet will do the job.

Converting major civs does have diplomatic consequences. I converted the Ottomans, who were never able to found their own religion, and maintained good relations with them throughout the game. The neighboring Iroquois, on the other hand, did found a religion of their own and I got into a sort of cold war with them for the hearts and minds of our peoples. They fired the initial salvo by converting my holy city of Edinburgh to their blasphemous way of thinking. I got rid of the heathens by sending in an inquisitor, then sent a missionary to their own holy city to convert them. They didn’t like that one bit, so they asked me to please stop, which I agreed to do since I didn’t want to get into a shooting war. When I tried again in a later era, they denounced me. Nothing much came of that since by that time I was quite strong militarily and had quite a collection of troops on his border.

Going back to barbarian-killing, this not only gave me a Faith boost, but also gave me an early lead in befriending the local city-states. It’s easier to get on the good side of the city-states now since they give you a lot more quests. A lot of them were things I would have been doing anyway. You want me to convert you to my religion? Done! You’re holding a contest to see who can generate the most Faith in 30 turns? Why that would be me! You’re looking for a Great Artist? But of course!

It seems the city state AI is much improved. I once got into a bidding war for a city state that had asked for money. Three of us were each trumping the other to pay the city state and get the most influence. I came out on top, which got me their unique luxury resource as well as influence with a second city state that happened to be seeking that resource. I was thus able to stay in the good graces of at least four city states (usually more) at any one time. With their unique luxury goods, I had happiness out the wazoo. The military city states kept gifting me units, so much so that I didn’t build a single land unit after the Renaissance yet still managed to have the second largest army at the end of the game.

Not that I actually used that army aside from killing barbarians. There were plenty of wars, but I was not involved in any one of them. The Ottomans and the Iroquois on my own continent would have a go at each other pretty regularly. England sitting off shore was pretty belligerent. Montezuma was on the other continent and took out Siam in the early going (not that I ever met the latter) then tried to take on the Byzantine-Dutch alliance. I was content to stay in my four cities, peddling my wares, generating happiness, and sending my missionaries far and wide.

At the end of the game, through a combination of happiness, Wonder building, Faith-based Great Artist buying, as well generating Great Artists the old fashioned way, I was able to maintain an almost continuous state of Golden Age. This production boost quickly propelled me to Cultural Victory.

All in all, I’d say it’s a good expansion, approaching Beyond the Sword greatness.

Thanks **Terminus Est. **Now I am on the horns of a dilemma. I have just finished the download. I need to get off my backside and go shopping and then mow the lawn.

I would love to start a game but I know how it would go. Just_one_more_turn_…
More mundane, did you have in difficulty in understanding game play. Did you read a lot of background information before starting?

I can’t say that I did a lot of preliminary reading before playing. The Introductory Guide over at CivFanatics probably has all you need to know. I was interested in the religion aspects, so that’s what I mostly paid attention to.

Start up the game. You know you want to.

Thanks- I already have the preliminary guide open in a separate window.

And I have forced myself to get the shopping out of the way before I start anything- I know how weak I am (I can see pizzas for dinner as I will be to tied up to cook).

And to really compound matters my new you beaut mobile phone should arrive today and I’ll need to sort that out! How did I manage before I retired?

Just started. What does an “embassy” do? An AI offered me one in my city for 25 gold and I have no idea whether this is a good deal. Civilopedia doesn’t mention them.

Damn, this sounds fun, wish I could play.

An embassy reveals a civilization’s capital. They’re required for the more advanced diplomatic options like Open Borders or Research Agreement. You need to have the right tech (I think it’s Writing) to set one up yourself. If you both have it, you can set up embassies in each other’s capital. If you don’t, the other civ will pay you a nominal fee, as you’ve discovered, which you can then reciprocate when you set up your own embassy in their capital.

Thanks- I asked at Civfanatics and there is a pretty detailed answer there now.

Also automatic garrisoning of units I see.

Foggy, it is fun so far (and I am only a little way in).

One thing I wish they did was better explain the concept of “pressure” in regards to how a city is converted. Is the number incoming or outgoing? How many is needed to convert a citizen?

I’m also wondering why prophets work in some city states but not in others.

I think a bigger pressure number means a greater tendency to convert to that religion. At least, the pressure tended to become bigger the closer I got to my holy city. Population might have something to do with it, as well as proximity to other cities. I agree that the meaning of the number is not entirely clear.

Are you talking about Great Prophets or missionaries? A missionary works best if there isn’t an established religion in a city; it should manage to convert the most if not all of the populace. On the other hand, if there’s already a religion there, you’ll be lucky if you manage to get one or two converts. The Great Prophet, in contrast, is much more effective when there’s a religion present as he will first purge a city of heretical beliefs before converting people to the right way of thinking.

I have to relearn part of the game. I kept losing cities that I had just taken and I couldn’t figure out why. Then I noticed all the enemy ships and remembered they can conquer. I might actually have to build a navy now.

Is it just me or does it take longer to kill an enemy?

I thought I answered the prophets thing here but I guess it must have been in Civfanatics.

You need to have the missionary/ prophet alongside the city state, not just in their cultural boundary.

And this is what I find frustrating about the game. Firaxis puts out bugger all in the way of a guide. It is left to fans sites to flesh out all the changes.

Rand McNally, I haven’t encountered that yet (naval war). I normally play at King level but for my first game I dropped back to Prince. I have noticed that after the patch and before G & K the games seemed a hell of a lot more difficult.

I actually turned the advisor back on. There’s a “New to Expansion” setting, which should tell you most of the basics of what you need to know about religion and espionage.

Units get 100 HP now rather than just 10 HP, so it does take longer to kill one.

I have the advisors turned on at low level.

I see in the notes it states that you will be advised when technology is stolen, and who stole it. I had a technology stolen but I have no idea by whom. Is there a separate notification (or did I just miss seeing who it was?)

Well, latest time it was stolen it told me who it was.

However, no culture bombs with great artists? That renders them pretty useless.

In the same turn I was notified that I had enough faith points to buy a unit or building, and I got a great prophet. When I went to buy a missionary, I didn’t have any faith points. Bug? Or did I miss a nuance of the game?

When you get a great prophet, your faith points are rest to zero- despite how far over the threshold you may be.

You culture bomb with the Great General now, which also builds a citadel. Great Artists now are the only unit that can induce a Golden Age - still very powerful for the gold and production boost.

Anyone work out how the seaborne assaults work? Greece was pounding one of my island cities with destroyers and battleships- never saw a land unit- and next minute it was captured.