Epic 12, Part III

Climbing Out of the Hole, Last Part

While I was busy building more units and waiting until the peace deal would expire, I started to research Civil Service next. With such a great (new) capital, this was an obvious strong choice. In 770AD, I noticed Huayna had Construction, so I hurried to declare war on him again before he could build too many catapults or even elephants.

Thracian fell first.


But he still had his stack swimming around, but this time I was prepared. Also, he made the mistake of unloading it near my attack stacks.


After some killing and healing and pillaging of his remaining ivory resource, he had no longer anything worth mentioning to stop me, and it was a matter of several long hikes with some rests inbetween until the Incans were no more in 1214AD.

I had climbed out of the hole, and filled it so I would never fall back into it again. Here's my empire:


Being alone on an island meant I was safe from military campaigns. I could have gone for a domination or conquest victory now, but being still somewhat behind in tech on Emperor had the prospect of an exciting space race, which I hadn't had for a long time, so I opted for that route. This game was unscored anyway, and I was quite sure I could have won this easily via domination or conquest, so I wanted to have some fun after the hard part.

During the war, Cyrus had found me - and I was able to make some deals with him.



I had also started my first wonder during the war, namely the Hanging Gardens in Karakorum. But thanks to the war, I was at my happy cap, and not being allowed to whip meant I had no useful means of bringing down any unhappy population. So instead, I changed production one turn before completing it, hoping the wonder might still be available after the war. It wasn't.


But that was okay actually, as I hurt for money more than for population. I researched Monarchy next, then Paper and Education, heading for Liberalism. But even before finishing Education, Frederick discovered Liberalism first - okay, so much for that. I still went for it anyway, as it is always great trading material and opens up good civics for a peaceful space race.

I traded Paper to Alex for Compass and money, sold my world map to Mansa for money, then traded Education to Alex for Feudalism, Machinery and even more money. The money fuelled my research, and the trades helped me catching up, so once again it became clear that the human is just so much better at the trading game than the AI is.

Once I had Liberalism, I sold it to Cyrus for Optics, Drama and even more money, and to Alex for Engineering and yet more money. I was giving Liberalism away so liberally (heh) because I've seen the AI's lands and was confident that mine were now superior, and that I only had to fear Frederick with his large tech lead. Here are Alex' lands:


And here is the other continent:


When I built universities, then Oxford in Delhi, I missed whipping the most! Research wise, I went the usual space race path: Astronomy next, starting it in 1490AD. At that point, I notice the Colossus(!) was still available... I didn't have the time to build it during all my early wars, but why had none of the AIs built it?!?

Anway, now that I was going for Astronomy already, I didn't bother to build it. In 1535AD, Fred completes the Taj Mahal. In 1538AD, I notice that I'm a complete idiot, because I had forgotten to revolt to free speech/free religion... I do that now.

In 1580AD, another great scientist is generated and used to lightbulb Scientific Methods. In 1643AD, I'm the first to discover Physics (on the same turn as Frederick!) and use the resulting great scientist to lightbulb Biology. In 1661AD, FINALLY Oxford completes...

I also still traded like crazy, and watch while Alex and Mansa go at each other during three wars. 1706AD sees my first great engineer, which is saved and then used to rush the Statue of Liberty in 1742AD.

Sorry that this reads more like an autologger report, but...nothing exciting happened during this phase of the game. I caught up and overtook Frederick; Alex and Mansa went to war multiple times; I traded like crazy and gifted all sorts of things to the AIs to improve relations...and that was it. Nothing major happened, because my diplomacy paid off:


Two AIs at friendly and two at pleased not only meant no wars, but also no WFYABTA caps with two of them... More great people were generated. One great engineer helped to rush the Space Elevator in Delhi (my iron works city could not build it), and two more spawned my one and only golden age at the end of the game, to speed up building the last parts. One great prophet I really had no need for even constructed my first shrine... in 1864AD.

I won a space race victory in 1879AD, after a total play time of 8 hours, 31 minutes. Fred still lacked 4 parts, so the space race hadn't been so exciting after all.


With such a big landmass all to myself, and as a human being better at handling irrigation and finances in a cold climate, I dominated in all important respects in the end - crop yield, GNP, and Mfg Goods. I also learned afterwards that I had some luck concerning Huayna's initial growth curve:


Looks like raging barbs pose a threat even to Emperor AIs with all their boni sometimes...

Conclusion

This was a really fun game! It was not nearly as difficult as the original Gauntlet however, and I expect many victories in fact. Several factors made this game surprisingly easy, at least if you followed the One True Path for all high-level games, early aggression. These are the factors:

But we all know alot more about Civ than we did way back when the Civ 3 Gauntlet was played, so...maybe the original would be won by more players nowadays as well. Who knows?

It had been great fun though, so thanks go to Sulla for the game, and to you for reading this! I'm definately looking forward to report day to see how the others have handled this.

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