France IA Redux: Part 1 - The Beginning

Author: porkpotpie
Published: 2019-09-12, edited: 2019-09-13

Part of the campaign:

France IA Redux

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Game: Civilization V, Sid Meier's

France IA Redux: Part 0 - Introductions

Images: 13, author: porkpotpie, published: 2019-08-25, edited: 2019-09-06

Hello all! Welcome to part 1 of AI France Redux! The votes are in, and there aren't many, but you roll with what you've got. Leading the vote with 2 is both Albert's Monaco and Alfred's Anglo-Saxons. Napoleon's France, Vercingetorix's Gallia, Louis XI's France, and Georges Clemenceau's France received 1 vote apiece.

We start this part by looking at the first settle in the game, done by Catherine de Medici's France. They've founded Bayonne toward the centre of most of the French civs in the game.
In the south, Innocent III founds Rome towards Louis XI's France, a ballsy choice as there is plenty of land surrounding Avignon that isn't directly on someone else's doorstep.
Francisco Franco founds Madrid to his south, not forwardsettling anyone else for the moment. Sancho is moving his settler towards Franco for some reason, although I think its a pretty good choice. Settle the plains before the others, then use the Pyrenees as cover from the civs in France.
Brittany and Francois I settle, towards Catherine and Richelieu, and Napoleon III respectively. Both Napoleons move their settlers towards each other so it looks like it'll be a battle of who settles first.
Other civs settle their second cities as well, Belgium, the Carolingeans, Clemenceau's France. This is a pretty crowded region, so forward settles are unavoidable.
Further south the Swiss, Holy Roman Empire, Palatinate, and Burgundy follow suit. I have to say that Zurich is a pretty poor settle though.
Gallia, Burgundia, and Andorra also join the settling scene. Escaldes is a brave settle by Andorra, they couldn't get closer to the Visigoth's capital if they tried.
Return to Spain, as Asturias founds a coastal city in Leon. The Navarran settler looks like its goign to try settling near Franco, which is a pretty ballsy move as well.
Of course the Papal States get the first pantheon (Remember, they start with +1 faith instead of +1 culture), and they choose to believe in the God of War. They had better declare some wars to take advantage of their pantheon.
Flanders, Hainaut, Anjou, and Louis XVI's France settle their second cities. Caen is a bit far from Rouen, but AI gonna AI.
In southern England both civs found their second cities, while Cornwall pulls off a double by founding a pantheon at the same time. They essentially choose the opposite of what the Papal States chose, Goddess of Protection being a defensive pantheon.
Navarre founds their first city on the coast, and France announces his intentions to be warlike with the first great general in the game: Leonidas.
I'm immensely pleased with Monaco this game for settling their second city this early, or for even settling one at all. In previous games they never settled earlier than turn 75 if they ever got around to it. Anyway, they take advantage of settling a city to adopt a pantheon that gives them even more gold, something they'll have in abundance. Louis XI also settles a second city against the Alps, which is a poor choice.
Last second city settled slide. The Romans, Visigoths, and Aquitaine all settle. The visigoths go for the wombo-combo by adopting a pantheon that increases wonder construction speed. Does that imply they'll spend more time building wonders than a military? Guess we'll see.
Burgundia also founds a pantheon, this time granting more food from wheat and faster growth rates while at peace. Contrast the small population of Burgundia and the large population of Napoleon's France in the top left. This likely bodes badly for Burgundia.
Napoleon III founds... Saigon? Why they founded Ho Chi Minh City is beyond me, but its the first third city in the game. What is impressive is that they also have another settler ready to go. Looks like they're going for the expand early strategy.
I'm surprised anyone has a great work of art at this point in the game. Or, I would be if I didn't remember their UA (Free great writer upon first social policy adoption per era).
The Holy Roman Empire founds a pantheon giving them more food from camps. Magdeburg will surely benefit as soon as they get around to building camps on the bison.
Pelagius should have spent less time building Stonehenge and more time building settlers. Franco moves to box the Asturians into their corner by settling Barcelona on their doorstep.
Liege, Belgium, and Hainaut all found third cities in this crowded region, and Liege opts for production from caffeine sources. That'll be useful as all the plantations near Rongeren are coffee.
The Palatinate also has a pantheon now, increasing the Palace's yields by one. The Franks found Soissons near the capitals of the Carolingians and Luxembourg.
Four turns after building Stonehenge the Asturians start believing in a pantheon that is utterly useless to them... Seriously?
The peninsula of Brittany is a mess, as de Gaulle founds a fourth city (the first to do so), and Normandy forward settles Anjou with Saint-Lo. New France, representing the colonial expeditions to the New World, looks squished where they are, however if they move quickly they'll be able to escape into Normandy.
We go to Monaco as they've built the Temple of Artemis. This should help them grow in their tough location. Louis XI has a pretty good early army and a great general to boot.
Completely the opposite of Louis XI's army is that of the Anglo-Saxons. Alfred has instead built the Great Library which should propel them into the future at an unprecedented rate.
Andorra opts for a cultural pantheon, looking to hoofed animals that aren't bison to grant them culture. Sancho made a bold forward settle with San Sebastian. He should definitely settle south of there or risk having his city cut off from his core. Perhaps Andorra will do it, they have a settler going towards that region after all.
Surprising no one, the Papal States found the first religion: Catholicism. We'll look at religions when there are more.
Our first war erupts on turn 35 between the Visigoths and Aquitaine. The Visigoths have near complete military control of the area surrounding Poitiers already, I wonder what Eleanor was building all this time to not have a military?
And on the next turn 4 more wars are declared, wow! We'll start a the bottom, as that's how they came in. Louis XVI and Catherine de Medici declare war on Anjou. This shouldn't be too bad, Anjou has a meagre military, so conquest should be easy. What is slightly more troubling is that although Catherine and XVI are allies, Vercingetorix of the Gauls managed to convince Catherine to declare war on her ally, Louis XVI, with him. That's some top level diplomacy.
Instead of founding their third city near Bruges, the Flemish found it on the other side of Belgium. Antwerps is essentially a free snack for anyone who wants to take it.
As expected, after two turns Poitiers is already in the yellow. At least Eleanor recognises that she's about to lose her second city, she has a settler to the east-southeast of Bordeaux.
Completely ignoring Anjou, Catherine de Medici goes full bore for Louis XVI. Orleans is in the yellow and looks like it'll fall. It might flip, but I don't think that's too probable. Vercingetorix sends a warrior and an archer to attack Lille. "That settler only looks like a settler, its actually a great general in disguise." -Vercingetorix, probably.
Despite having no stone or marble, Philip III of Burgundy constructs the Mausoleum of Halicarnassus. Maybe I was too quick to deem Zurich a bad settle, it has a population of 9, while Bern only has 4. Granted, Bern is in a really bad place.
3 turns after the declaration of war, Poitiers is the first city to fall. The Visigothic army looks essentially undamaged, but perhaps an assault on Bordeaux would be precipitous.
Napoleon III founds his fourth city, and Orleans falls to Catherine de Medici's forces. You can also see a Gallic (Gallia in red, not Gaul in green) settler to the west of Bourges. That'd be a really brave settle for that Vercingetorix.
Normandy founds a pantheon granting them happiness from cities over 6 population, and you can just see the Anglo-Saxon third city of Warwick.
Cornwall founds Druidism in their capital and have settled Pennsans to hopefully halt the Anglo-Saxon city advance. Michael am Gof could probably settle one or two more cities in that space; hopefully he does so to keep up with Alfred.
Vercingetorix, the mad lad, did it. He founded Bayeux in a place that he could never conceivably defend. I'm sure no one will resent him for that, right?
Quick, a distraction! The Franks found a pantheon granting them science for city connections. Too bad they have none at this point.
I saw it coming, you saw it coming, we all sat it coming. Francois I and the other Vercingetorix declare war on Gallia. Francis is too far to do anything about it, and the Gauls (green) are already at war with Louis XVI, so its unknown how much they'll actually do besides send a settler to the front.
Really? You sent your settler all the way around the Pyrenees to settle there? At least its defensible.
Jumping on the screw Louis XVI train is Anne of Brittany. She'll have to send her forces through Catherine de Medici to get to XVI, but scoring diplomatic points with your neighbour isn't all bad right?
Napoleon III declares war on Eleanor, although he has to go around Francois I's territory to get close to Bordeaux. It looks like Julius Caesar is about to do the same thing.
Leopold II of Belgium declares war on Liege. Liege's army is pretty small, so if Leopold plays his cards right he could make major gains, assuming he remembers to appear strong to the Hainaut to his south.
Both Charlemagnes join Leopold by declaring war on Liege. The Carolingeans will have a bit of trouble getting to the fight, but the Franks should have no such issue.

Offscreen one of the many France's adopts a pantheon granting them +1 culture from shrines.
De Champlain builds the Great Pyramids in the Ville de Quebec. He should probably focus on building a military instead, as de Gaulle looks set to attack.
Asturias founds Nestorianism in Oviedo. A lot of Christian denominations get founded in this game, probably as everyone in this region is generally Catholic and the Papal States have already founded it.
Out of nowhere the Gauls (green) have captured Lille, however Louix XVI has enough units nearby to go for a flip. I'd be surprised if he held on to it after flipping it, but there isn't much else to do in such a situation.
The Palatinate founds Lutheranism, while the Carolingians found Regensburg. Luxembourg has a pretty impressive military, though could probably do some damage if they decided to invade someone.
Speaking of invasion, the Swiss attack the HRE. The Swiss appear to have a larger military, but the HRE have their unique unit, the Legio Regia. It gains 15% combat strength when beginning its turn on a religious unit, which the HRE has none, and earns great artist points when capturing a city. Ok, it doesn't appear that useful in this situation. Looks like they'll have their work cut out for them, but at least they have the river to defend behind?
As I predicted earlier, de Gaulle declares war on de Champlain, the War of the De. New France doesn't have that large of a military, so France could make some major gains if they play their cards right.
Somehow Monaco doesn't top this list, considering their pantheon and UA generate gold for them.

Offscreen, Louis XVI recaptures Lille from the Gauls somehow, and the Gauls only have ranged units nearby to not recapture it.
On top of being at war with the B̶e̶l̶g̶i̶a̶n̶s̶, Carolingians, and Franks, Liege is now at war with West Germany. Considering no one else is doing anything, it may not be that bad.
Julius Caesar declares war on Aquitaine, but Visigothic and French units are in the way.

Sancho founded Vitoria near San Sebastian, so I guess he wants to link his empire together.
Instead of going for the obvious target (Liege), Ermesinde leads Luxembourg to war against the Franks. I don't blame her though, as Soissons only has 2 warriors nearby for defence/offence.
More importantly, the Burgundians, Visigoths, and Napoleon III's France declare war on Gallia. Gundahar's Burgundia looks like it'll have the easiest time with this war as they share a border.

In other news, Louis XVI's France and Margaret of Anjou make peace after XVI got murderised by his neighbours.
The Holy Roman Empire founds Eastern Orthodoxy, and doesn't appear to have too large a military near their capital. If the Swiss play their cards right, they may just take it. But, its the AI, so don't expect a miracle.
Here is the Papal States' UA, which is utterly useless in this game as there are no city-states. Oh well. Anyway, Innocent shouldn't have too hard a time here, as the Burgundian army is in the north.
We get our first clear view of both Louis XIV's and Georges Clemenceau's France as the latter builds the Statue of Zeus. This should help them capture cities easier, however their military doesn't look too impressive. Lille is currently part of the Gauls.
Pelagius moves a settler to escape Franco's trap, but it looks like Franco fell asleep while setting it. That, or he found Gods, granting him an extra food in cities with 3+ population.
Despite being the target of wars on almost every side, Erard de la Marck founds a Oriental Orthodoxy in Liege. Instead of attacking the undefended Maastricht in force, Adenauer attacks Liege itself. Not the best move in this situation, but whatever floats ze boat.
Navarre also founds a pantheon, this time granting faith for each gem, pearl, and amber. In more important news, Roger Bernard of Andorra has declared war on the Visigoths. He doesn't look prepared for this endeavour however.
Jealous of his statue of Zeus, the Sun King (Louis XIV) declares war on Georges Clemenceau. Clemenceau's army is gathered around his capital, so it should be pretty safe at the moment.
The invasion of Borbetomagus by the Papal States is going badly, but the game as decided that Julius Caesar must take out Gallia. I'm not sure its a good idea, as from the looks of it the Roman army is smaller than the Gallian army.
Monaco of all places founds a religion, Bogomillism. They'll need to spread it aggressively if they want it to be anything more than a local belief due to Catholicism.
Ah, that's why Julius declared war on Gallia, he knew that Napoleon would join in. Napoleon's forces look spiffy with their metal swords, but Gallia has their UU out, the Bararoas. It is also a swordsman replacement, however it doesn't need iron and has a combat strength of 13, however if they do have iron available it has a combat strength of 15. Its also cheaper to build.

This declaration of war has caused us to enter a golden age! Too bad the War of the De is over. No cities traded hands.
Taking advantage of a distracted Holy Roman Empire, Otto Henry's Palatinate declares war on Otto's HRE. The War of the Ottos begins! The Palatinate should have an easier time, but we'll see what actually happens.
Vercingetorix (green) has captured Bayeux from Vercingetorix (red). That makes the Gauls the first to 5 cities!
Except that they're not the first! West Germany moves first in the turn order, as it is alphabetical, and they captured Maastricht from Liege.
The armies of Rome have captured Arras from Gallia, and surprisingly the Gallians haven't attacked Roman lands. Too bad they're burning it, as they need the extra city. The invasion of Borbetomagus is still going badly, but its the thought that counts, right?
Orleans, capital of Louis XVI, is in the yellow from the attacks of the Gauls, Catherine's France, and the Bretons, who have braved one tile passages to get close to their target.

I have no idea why I don't show this, but in my notes I have Catherine's France making peace with Margaret's Anjou, Burgundia making peace with the Papal States, and Luxembourg making peace with the Franks. No cities changed hands in any wars.

This is where we end the part, apart from the stats pages. Thanks for following this and making it to the end! Here's a poll that lets you tell me who you think will win this game:
We start off with the population stats, Brittany and Richelieu's France leading.
Burgundia and the Franks trail the rankings, with even Louis XVI's France having a greater population than 9 other civs even though he only has one city.
Next up is production, with the West Germans and Anglo-Saxons taking the lead. I'm not surprised a France isn't in the top 5, too busy spending their time striking.
Aquitaine and Louis XVI's France are at the bottom of the ranking, unsurprisingly as they both only have their capital left.
Richelieu's France and the Franks have the largest militaries, with only the Anglo-Saxons close.
At the bottom of the list are, unsurprisingly, the bottom two of the production ranking.
The last stat we'll look at is the number of technologies, with the Hainaut in the lead with 15.
Its not that much of a lead, as the Burgundians and Gallians only have 11.

That's it, thanks for making it here as well!

Next chapter:

Game: Civilization V, Sid Meier's

France IA Redux: Part 2 - The First to Fall

Images: 91, author: porkpotpie, published: 2019-09-16, edited: 2019-09-21

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