We returned for our twelfth round of this game of Civilization V, which started back in early May. Joining me this week was Potshot and Loghound, it being Mattman’s turn for a week away.
I had a very simple goal for this round. I wanted to knock out two, or maybe three if we were lucky, of the AI civilizations. I figured that the fewer AIs gumming up the works, the more responsive the game would be. And we had two very likely candidates. Morocco, which had been hanging around without actually possessing a city since week 8, was first on the list. Last week I had spotted what I had hoped were his last few units and I was ready to dispatch them as soon as we got going.
And then there was Russia, which had been reduced to a single city on a two hex island, hemmed in by Loghound and his Celts, and just waiting for the dagger to be driven home.
The potential third empire headed for destruction was that of Montezuma and the Aztecs. With Potshot back it looked like we could renew our joint offensive and drive the Aztecs to the brink of destruction.
But first we had to start the game already. More after the cut.
There is always a problem.
For once, the game launched fine. However, for reasons unclear, the Google hangout that Loghound setup would not let me join. I tried a number of tricks, eventually deciding that maybe a system restart would clear the problem. Since I already had the game up and was hosting, that meant kicking everybody for the restart. Loghound, who was also on last week, took over hosting while I waited for my system to come up. Then I had to launch Civ, which balked and failed on me on the first try. On the second try I was able to get into the starting screen, but Google was not letting me join the hangout. It would just sit there with wiggling its green text box with the double quotes at me while refusing to connect.
Eventually I gave up on that and, at Potshot’s suggestion, created a hangout of my own which tried to connect Loghound by calling his cell phone. He hung that up, got out of the original hangout and joined mine so that, about 25 minutes after I first started trying to join the hangout, we were finally all on voice coms together. We never did figure out what was wrong. I even use Chrome for hangouts, just to appease any Google ill will towards other browsers. There was some speculation that it might have gotten fouled up because I accepted the initial invite to the hangout and then Loghound changed the time, leaving me a second invite and two Friday night hangouts, one at 7pm and one at 8:45pm.
So after all of that, Loghound pressed the button to start the game and we waited for Civ to come to grips with the reality of our game. After some waiting, the game let us in, at which point I noticed that we were at the wrong save point. Loghound had used a save from turn 678 and we left off last time at turn 686. So we all dumped out of the game again, I took over hosting duties, everybody joined, and we started off at turn 687 as expected. It only took us 30 minutes to get things rolling.
The first turn was, naturally, a long one. Potshot had to come to grips with 25 turns of AI mismanagement, and coms were colored by various expletives and interrogatives regarding what the AI had in mind. Eventually things were sorted out. Potshot and I renewed out alliance, which required going back down the checklist and exchanging embassies, declaring friendship, agreeing to open borders, and then setting up a joint defensive pact.
On his own continent, Loghound prepared for the final assault on Yaroslavl. I renewed a couple of trade deals with him, one of which Aunt B to declare we love the king day. The Aunt B references never got old and I announced on coms whenever Aunt B had some announcement or built something.
And near the antarctic I chased down and eliminated the visible Moroccan units. However, they were not his last units. The search carried on. Once again I was impressed by the capabilities of submarines in the game, a unit I have never really used being more of a land campaign person, when I found they could sail under ice packs, so I was able to go all Ice Station Zebra in my search for the remaining Moroccan units. And that actually helped me find one.
I sighted slob and sank same, but was denied final victory. Morocco was still on the scoreboard. Another unit had to be out there somewhere.
Meanwhile Potshot was assembling his forces for a push against the Aztecs. I asked him to wait until 2025 for the war to start as I had not really built up enough forces and was in the midst of reducing Morocco’s one city state ally. I had a lot of units in production or on the move to the front, but some of them were still a couple of turns away before fighting opened up. But you go to war with the army you have, not the army you may want. I had some artillery in place and my city secure defensively, but I needed some more land units to be able to press home once I had softened up targets.
On the high seas though I was better prepared. Knowing the AI’s mania for warships, I collected up a task force of my own to confront the Aztecs in the bay surrounded by some of his remaining cities. With the declaration of war, my ships sailed in like Dewey into Manila.
The Aztec fleet was sent to the bottom in short order and I was able to heave to along the Aztec coast and shell his cities as a stream of units began to land on the middle peninsula with an aim towards taking his capital, Tenochititlan. Go ahead, say that five times fast. Or say it at all. I can barely say “Chipotle.”
I kept my battleships close to the coast while I spread out my submarines and destroyers in order to seek out and destroy any further Aztec shipping. I managed to plunder a couple of his trade routes and caught a couple of his land units trying to hurry down the coast, sending them all to the bottom. As I was sweeping out in search of further Aztec naval units, I flitted by a caravel of a distinctive color.
It was a Moroccan ship, and I quickly moved to sink it. It turned out to be the final unit and the Moroccan empire disappeared from the scoreboard and the demographics chart. One down.
The war on land was a struggle at my end for a bit, as Montezuma threw in everything he had. But his capital fell and, as my forces kept building up on the island, I pressed him hard pushing down the last peninsula. As I was driving for Tula, Potshot was wrapping up Montezuma’s final cities in the north. I had two battleships supporting his advance, but he had more than enough troops on the ground to finish off what needed to be done. With the north take, I wrapped up the south by taking Tula. The Aztecs were defeated.
Of course, we didn’t get the last Aztec unit. We will be hunting for him for a while.
So we kept the declaration of war up, but I had to draw down my forces some. My building efforts had assumed more casualties than I took and the gold required to keep all of those units in the field was sapping my reserves. So I disbanded enough to get out of deficit spending while I rallied a strike force to head north for Babylon.
There was apparently a long running commentary from Loghound regarding his war against the Russians which we missed because Loghound had put himself on mute at some point. In the spirit of the Aunt B jokes, he did pass along a screen shot of San Francisco demanding wine at one point during the game.
That also gave me a look at his world map. We take our intel where we find it.
Then as we were cleaning up from the war, deciding what to build after the initial courthouse in our new cities, and weighing the merits of war with the Babylonians versus the Arabs, Potshot’s game crashed, so it looked like a good point to take a save and call it a night. We made it to turn 716, which put us in July of 2033. While atomic bombs are on the menu now as several of us have completed the Manhattan project, we are still fighting with mostly WWII level equipment. I researched rocketry, which got me rocket artillery near the end of the Aztec campaign, but that looked to be the pinnacle of things for the time being.
As we were closing up and I was taking some last screen shots, I went over to Yaroslavl and found it still under siege, battered, but as yet untaken.
Loghound had neglected to build units that could actually occupy the city and so had just kept pummeling it while he got something lined up. I hope he can get there quickly because according to the demographics from the end of the match, Russia has no military units left. It could be a quick end for them.
But on to the summary. Everybody moved up as Montezuma moved down the score list and Morocco fell off entirely. At last.
The demographics show me still on top, with the Aztecs and Russia holding the bottom rungs in everything except approval, which went to Assyria. Wonder what the AI is doing wrong there?
And, finally, there is the tiny world map.
There is a lot more orange and lime green on the map and a lot less red than last week. Now we just have to track down the last of the Aztecs and finish off the Russians and then figure out where to bring our war next.
Past updates for the game can be found here.
- Weeks 1 & 2 – The Big Map – Turns 1 – 220
- Week 3 – Hands Across the Something – Turns 221 – 300
- Week 4 – The Siege of Madrid – Turns 301 – 375
- Week 5 – Embracing Spanish Confucianism – Turns 376 – 450
- Week 6 – The Slow March of Time – Turns 451 – 470
- Week 7 – Operation Torch and the Russian Front – Turns 471 – 520
- Week 8 – Autocracy and the Pursuit of Happiness – Turns 521 – 580
- Week 9 – Obama, Autocracy, and Expansion – Turns 581 – 617
- Week 10 – From the Halls of Montezuma – Turns 618 – 660
- Week 11 – We Have Met The Enemy, And It Is The Game Itself – Turns 661 – 686