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  • Advanced Start Feedback

    The Gathering Storm was the first game I've been admin for which used the Advanced Start with BTS. Now that the game has been rolling for a while, I'd like to get feedback from everyone on how they feel about it now. Was it worth it? Would you want more or less gold next time around? Anything else you'd do different with respect to game format?

    Here are my impressions...

    First and foremost, I have to take full responsibility for how long the advanced start took. In hindsight, I should have had a sub ready to go on that Monday just in case. However, this isn't the fault of advanced start but more on how the game start itself was managed.

    It seemed like the no restart policy worked ok although some people did complain about making mistakes. I suspect time will tell whether or not those mistakes end up having a significant effect. In the end though I think this was the right call for the game and simplified things immensely.

    My overall impression is still positive although next time I think I'd vote to increase the gold value slightly (perhaps to 700 or 800). Right off the bat the turns were definitely more interesting although having a few more options would make it even better and certainly further vary the strategy that everyone would be using.

    Bernout

    |TG-MD6|


  • #2
    Re: Advanced Start Feedback

    I personally love Advanced Start and would never play without it now.

    The level of gold we had was just about right in my opinion. The more you increase it, the more people's setups start to make a difference. I've played games where we had triple the usual number of points at startup and you end up getting people who start with copper connected and Axemen ready to go right from word go which can be devastating for those whose setup is not as good.

    The amount we have in this game is enough to get you started nicely and keep the early turns interesting, but not so much that it makes a massive difference what you spend the points on or opens up, for want of a better term, cheesy tactics.

    Increasing to 7 or 8 hundred would probably be okay I suppose. :)

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    • #3
      Re: Advanced Start Feedback

      Only 1 response from 17 players? Come on slackers...pipe up and let me know how you think it went. :row__536:

      Bernout

      |TG-MD6|

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      • #4
        Re: Advanced Start Feedback

        I hate it. Well I only hate it because I'm in last place.

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        • #5
          Re: Advanced Start Feedback

          Well I only hate it because I'm in last place.
          I'm working on fixing that soon enough. You took the screenshot of me in first place for those two turns, right? I know I did. :)

          Snarlin


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          • #6
            Re: Advanced Start Feedback

            I think it went fine (and that's coming from the guy near the bottom of the score list).

            Since trying to get 18 people online at the same time really isn't feasible, I think advanced start is the ONLY option. I for one wouldn't want to spend a month accomplishing the same thing we accomplished in the advanced start.

            I do have a question though. Obviously I wasn't the only one that spent points on research in hopes of getting a religion, but I didn't get it. Someone else did. Does anyone know how that works on advanced starts? If more than one person researches Hinduism or Buddhism, how does the computer decide who gets it?




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            • #7
              Re: Advanced Start Feedback

              Originally posted by AFsoccer View Post
              If more than one person researches Hinduism or Buddhism, how does the computer decide who gets it?
              Presumably the same way it does when two people tech it in the same turn, which would simply be random? That's what I've always assumed...

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Advanced Start Feedback

                Advance start is really the solution when playing with a lot of people.
                600 gold is probably enough.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Advanced Start Feedback

                  I think, because of the huge map size, using your advance start on technologies may be much less efficient, as units and cities come at standard price still, but techs are at 1.5 price.

                  Now, this isn't necessarily bad, but I think it is one of those situations where it does make people who adopt one relatively specific strategy, hands down do better than those who adopt different approaches, on average (of course, you could gamble with getting a tactical resource and get it in your city and rush, but the risk-benefit is low I think).

                  It makes so if everyone is trying to gain a strategic advantage they would start as close to the same way as possible (minimizing techs while maximizing cities and units). You can decide for yourself if this should be considered a pro or a con, or decide to inform people of this fact (if it is proven to be a fact, that is, I just have a hunch right now).
                  Last edited by Levgree; 05-01-2008, 10:28 PM.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Advanced Start Feedback

                    Originally posted by Levgree View Post
                    I think, because of the huge map size, using your advance start on technologies may be much less efficient, as units and cities come at standard price still, but techs are at 1.5 price.
                    I'd have to take a closer look to confirm but I thought that the price of the techs was the same as their RP cost in game. If that's the case then yes you are spending more gold but it would also correspondingly take you longer to research.

                    From a strategy perspective, the bigger question in my mind is how much to focus on expansion. Certainly getting more cities down sooner can pay off but only if your neighbors let you get away with it.

                    Bernout

                    |TG-MD6|

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                    • #11
                      Re: Advanced Start Feedback

                      In my experience your starting gold is always best spent on cities, culture for those other than your capital, workers and a minimal number of warrior units.
                      Oh, and also buying a population in each city is highly recommended. You get a pop plus half the food required for the next pop and skip by a lot of the "it's gonna take HOW long to build that?" stage of city development.

                      The first 10 turns can be spent bolstering your city defences and I don't think anyone is particularly likely to suffer from a rush very early (I admit however that I've never seen it attempted and also in one game I played with much more starting gold it was a very potent strategy).

                      If you consider the resources required to build a settler, the time your city spends with no growth while doing so, and the time it takes to get to a new site, cities are an absolute bargain at 100 gold (plus a bit extra for 1 culture and 1 pop).
                      My advice is to get as many as you can while still allowing for maximum worker purchases (workers are also a bargain for the same reason). I've found 3 starting cities to be optimal, with cultural expansion and pop on them all, and as many workers as you can afford with change spent on warriors. Oh, and if you don't have starting tech that will actually let your workers get going straight away, I'd buy one that's appropriate to keep them busy right from word go.

                      Anyone have different thoughts? :)

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Advanced Start Feedback

                        Originally posted by Twahn View Post
                        In my experience your starting gold is always best spent on cities, culture for those other than your capital, workers and a minimal number of warrior units.
                        Oh, and also buying a population in each city is highly recommended. You get a pop plus half the food required for the next pop and skip by a lot of the "it's gonna take HOW long to build that?" stage of city development.

                        The first 10 turns can be spent bolstering your city defences and I don't think anyone is particularly likely to suffer from a rush very early (I admit however that I've never seen it attempted and also in one game I played with much more starting gold it was a very potent strategy).

                        If you consider the resources required to build a settler, the time your city spends with no growth while doing so, and the time it takes to get to a new site, cities are an absolute bargain at 100 gold (plus a bit extra for 1 culture and 1 pop).
                        My advice is to get as many as you can while still allowing for maximum worker purchases (workers are also a bargain for the same reason). I've found 3 starting cities to be optimal, with cultural expansion and pop on them all, and as many workers as you can afford with change spent on warriors. Oh, and if you don't have starting tech that will actually let your workers get going straight away, I'd buy one that's appropriate to keep them busy right from word go.

                        Anyone have different thoughts? :)
                        nope, I agree that is probably the very best strategy... and it is what I would've done but I didn't notice that techs were cost x1.5 until I already bought a quite expensive one, leaving me without money really for many settlers or workers ;p

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Advanced Start Feedback

                          Originally posted by Snarlin View Post
                          I'm working on fixing that soon enough. You took the screenshot of me in first place for those two turns, right? I know I did. :)

                          Snarlin
                          Well I was real happy when we started and I was high on the list. But then like 2 turns later I sank like a rock. I guess I should have taken a screenie.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Advanced Start Feedback

                            Optimal point use says "place cities". But the lack of good scouting means you quite often get a sub-optimal placement.

                            I know in my case, as soon as I placed one of them (revealing more map), I immediately said "I wish I'd moved that one tile".

                            Settlers are the same price as cities, so you could just buy them and scout for a few turns, but then you can't buy that 2nd pop point, and you lose walking time to the other players.

                            I'd vote NO to advanced starts in any future games.
                            Elkad

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                            • #15
                              Re: Advanced Start Feedback

                              Originally posted by Levgree View Post
                              nope, I agree that is probably the very best strategy... and it is what I would've done but I didn't notice that techs were cost x1.5 until I already bought a quite expensive one, leaving me without money really for many settlers or workers ;p
                              I'm assuming that since this topic has switched over to strategy that we are talking about a starting scenario similar to what we just went through.

                              As soon as you place more than one city down you are already talking higher maintenance costs which as we know hits you in the pocket book and corresponding research. So maybe from an advanced start points perspective it might be "optimal", but from a strategy perspective I'm not convinced. As I said earlier, assuming your neighbors let you get away with having multiple, lightly defended cities you will come out ahead in the long run.

                              Originally posted by XSChunkylover77
                              Well I was real happy when we started and I was high on the list. But then like 2 turns later I sank like a rock. I guess I should have taken a screenie.
                              Don't get hung up on the points, they are an indicator but nothing more. Just appreciate the fact that they are a combination of city population, cultural territory, technology and world wonders. Notice that military strength is not included (unless that's changed with BTS). ;) I'd still like a MP option where it doesn't list the points at all.

                              Originally posted by Ebenezer
                              Optimal point use says "place cities". But the lack of good scouting means you quite often get a sub-optimal placement.

                              I know in my case, as soon as I placed one of them (revealing more map), I immediately said "I wish I'd moved that one tile".

                              Settlers are the same price as cities, so you could just buy them and scout for a few turns, but then you can't buy that 2nd pop point, and you lose walking time to the other players.

                              I'd vote NO to advanced starts in any future games.
                              Eb, your message reminds me of Oyzar. :) So is what you wrote your main reason for not wanting to do advanced starts in the future? The advanced start is certainly comprised of many compromises unless you have a large number of points to start with. If you want to place that second city in a good location then you need to suck up the points and use the visibility feature. If you build Settlers then you can find comfort in the knowledge that many other players likely did the exact same thing and face the same drawbacks from having done so. Then in this game there were probably people who didn't do either and spent the points doing research and building up their capital.

                              Which strategy was best? As I mentioned earlier, I don't think we used enough points to do anything that would have a significant impact in the game. More important IMO is who you start next to, available terrain, etc.

                              Bernout

                              |TG-MD6|

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