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Video Game Five looked to be the story of one specific AI leader: Mansa Musa. In the neighborhood predictions prior to this game started, we had nearly 2 thirds of the entries choose Mansa as the supposed winner of this game. Long earlier in the early days of Civ4, I wrote in one of my reports that Mansa Musa had the "winner" AI personality, just as Tokugawa had actually the "loser" AI personality. While Tokugawa refuses to sign Open Borders with anyone and also stagnates in isolation, Mansa trades via anyone and everyone, fueling a rapid program of financial advance. When technology trading is allowed, Mansa Musa is inrenowned for his rampant tech trading abilities. I"ve checked out him squeezed into a corner of the map via four cities and also still someexactly how end up being the AI technology leader in defiance of all logic. Here in AI Survivor via no Tech Trading enabled, Mansa has been somewhat reigned in while still being a teching powerhome. His Financial/Spiritual combicountry appears to occupational incredibly well in these games, through the AI conserving lots of turns otherwise shed to Anarchy while picking up the awesome Financial commerce bonus. And although Mansa is just one of the more relaxed leaders in the game, he likewise has the capability to plot battle at "Pleased" relations, which makes him much even more dangerous than many of the other peacenik AIs. This game would carry out an additional possibility to watch Mansa Musa in activity.

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The Malinese people started out this game in the northwest edge of the continent. This was arguably a subpar place, with only a plains cow and a bunch of floodplains tiles for food, and also with little bit room to expand also in the north merged via huge tracts of jungle to the southern. Mansa would also need to complete with Alexander of Greece, among the game"s a lot of aggressive leaders, adjacent to the east. Of course, these 2 leaders had started in very similar positions last seachild in Game Six, and that contest ended in a Mansa Musa romp. We"d have to watch if Alexander might do much better this time. More to the east was Suleiman of the Ottoman Realm, an Imperialistic AI who was one of the dark steed picks in this game. A lot of civilization chosen him to come in second location, and Suleiman would certainly have a good chance in this game if he can spread out favor the torment along the eastern edge of the continent. Down in the south were 2 extremely calm leaders who prefer to sit back and develop things (Lincoln/Hammurabi) and one extremely aggressive leader who favors warfare (Gilgamesh). It was a certainty that the massive distinction in peace weight between these three civs would spark problem, and I questioned that all 3 of them would certainly survive until the finish.

None of the leaders in this game began via Mysticism technology, developing an open competition for the initially 2 religious beliefs. Mansa Musa seemed most likely to claim one of them because of his hefty spiritual choices, but he opened up with a growth-oriented Bronze Working into Animal Husbandry technology course instead. It was Hammurabi that went for the Meditation faith first and also establimelted Islam in his second city. Then when no one else made any type of prompt move for a faith, Hammurabi would certainly go on to discovered the Polytheism faith (Buddhism) in his THIRD city. I don"t think we"ve ever before watched the exact same AI leader discovered both of the first 2 religions before in AI Survivor. This developed a weird game where tright here was effectively just one leading Islamic religion that spreview throughout many of the people. When the Monotheism religion was founded in the future Turn 47, it was Gilgamesh that picked it up dvery own in the much southwest edge of the map, which restricted its spread. This would certainly cause severe diplomatic troubles for Gilgamesh in a world wright here Islam was leading.

The AI leaders primarily broadened in logical fashion when aobtain in this game. Lincoln sent his initially settler to the southeastern while Suleiman went due south, developing a big open space in the center of the map wright here barbarians flourimelted. Gilgamesh and also Hammurabi both expanded to the north and also picked solid spots with their own inhabitants. And as for Mansa and also Alexander:

They settled appropriate on top of one an additional through their initially few cities. It"s tough to think of a instance even more most likely to guarantee future dispute than this. Mansa and also Alex were both racing to check out that can case the middle of the continent, and also whoever won had actually the potential to cut the various other one out of the picture totally. We initially believed that Djenne would certainly lock Alex out of the facility, just to see him push out a very early settler for his third city and work out Corinth a mere three tiles away to the northeastern. Because Mansa has actually a really high peace weight score (9) and also Alex has actually an extremely low tranquility weight (0), these close boundaries almost made battle an inevitability. Over the adhering to transforms Alexander ongoing to perform a lot much better than expected, planting his fourth city to the east of Djenne and then another city also additionally south. The Greeks were the first civ to reach 3 cities, then the first to 4 cities, then initially to five. On the other hand, Mansa planted his third city in the much northwest directly on height of the stone resource. This offered him both stone and marble, sfinishing Mansa right into wonder-structure mode. He cranked out initially the Great Wall adhered to by the Pyramids. Mansa showed up to be wasting valuable beforehand game production on wonders instead of pushing out even more inhabitants for development. This component of the map was not going the method that we meant at all.

In the southern, Lincoln showed up to be doing the best in the at an early stage game. He was broadening quickly in all directions and also faced little opplace from his 2 neighbors. Hammurabi was concentrating too much on faith, researching both Polytheism and also Meditation techs and also delaying important growth-oriented study goals (Bronze Working, Pottery, Animal Husbandry) as a result. Then he likewise constructed Stonehenge, which wasn"t somepoint that the Babylonians necessary with two early religious beliefs already in hand also. In the far west, Gilgamesh made a decision to spend two of his first four inhabitants on locations down in the tundra that quickly might have actually been claimed later. Those inhabitants would have actually been a lot much better used claiming land also along the American border rather than grabbing iceballs that would never be worth incredibly much. This have to have left obtainable the central part of the map for an aggressive landgrab from Suleiman and his Imperialistic trait. However, Suleimale had actually idiotically locked himself right into a trap of his very own AI programming. He was building a settler in his second city, a jungle-choked place stuck at size 1 through exactly zero manufacturing capability. So long as that settler remained in manufacturing, the Suleiguy AI believed it was "expanding" and refprovided to start one more settler in the capital. As an outcome, Suleiman sat on two cities for several dozens of transforms on finish, falling far behind the remainder of the field. We"ve derisively referred to Suleiguy as "Sillyman" as soon as he"s done stupid things in the past, and also this was one more case of the AI smoking some of the pungent weed.

By Turn 50, Lincoln and also Alexander appeared to be leading the field. Lincoln was leading in score with six cities and a settler for a seventh under production. At this suggest, I was founding to wonder if we had all targeted the wrong tranquil AI in this game; possibly it was Lincoln that was destined for glory in this enhance. Alexander appeared to be replicating the course to success that Hannibal and also Justinian had adhered to in the last 2 AI Survivor games, beginning in the north and also then settling directly towards the central part of the map. With an extensive tundra backlines still to case, Alex looked specific to end up via about ten cities and even more land than anyone else. Gilgamesh was lingering as a threat in the south, although his tundra city placements left a great deal to be wanted. Hammurabi had been slowed by his spiritual stuff and also Mansa had actually been slowed by his wonder structure spree. The Malinese were practically done with the Pyramids though, and also as a result of some excellent luck tright here was still the majority of jungle to the southern that remained to be declared. I still assumed Mansa had a decent possibility although this had actually been a bit of a turbulent opening for him. Finally Suleiman was desperately pumping out inhabitants currently but he was exceptionally much behind, last area on the scoreboard by a wide margin. The weak placement of his second city and Suleiman AI"s refusal to build another settler until that city had actually completed the initially one had actually fundamentally crippled his game. Coming earlier from this destructive opening was going to be a herculean task.

The map continued to fill up over the following transforms. Mansa finiburned the Pyramids and also automatically swapped to Representation public, where he would certainly continue to be for most of the game. That probably made the Pyramids a worthwhile build, particularly with the rock resource available. The AI loves to run professionals in Civ4 and the extra happiness from Representation helps them a lot in the at an early stage game. (You would certainly think that the Deity AI would certainly be able to manage happiness in their cities offered the astronomical bonprovides that they acquire, but they struggle via happiness constantly. Early luxuries choose cream color, furs, and also gold sources assist out their performance a lot.) Mansa then proceeded to crank out 2 settlers at once and also insurance claim 2 cities in the southerly jungle. That lugged him ago also with the remainder of the fill, if still trailing Lincoln by an excellent margin. Gilgamesh went ahead and built the Oracle, while Hammurabi slowly settled the backlines region in his southeast edge. Suleimale was ultimately making use of his Imperialistic trait and also regulated to insurance claim many of the staying region in between him and also Alexander. Now why couldn"t he have actually done that 2 dozen turns earlier?

We meant Alexander or Gilgamesh to begin the initially battle versus their corresponding neighbors. Instead, it was shockingly Mansa Musa who began the first conflict on Turn 78 by relocating a stack alongside Corinth. And unprefer so many of those failed at an early stage wars in Civ4, this one was timed perfectly:

Corinth had actually no society inside and no city walls once Mansa asserted battle. As an outcome, it was simple for Mansa Musa to take it over via his stack of swords and also axes. This capture neatly bisected Greek area right into 2 halves, separating Alex"s 2 southern cities from his 4 northern cities. It ended up being clear instantly that Alex was in genuine danger from this intrusion. Corinth had his only resource of steeds, and also if the Malinese boundaries were able to expand also to take over that reresource, the Greeks would be unable to build chariots or equine archers. Also, alert just how tbelow seemed to be many Greek placed devices running around? It turned out that Alexander had no copper or iron resources connected to his trade netjob-related. He did have actually an iron reresource sitting just outside among his north cities in the second ring, but gain this: Alexander had never researched Mysticism tech.

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Seriously. As late as Turn 100 he still didn"t have actually Mysticism tech. That meant no monuments to expand borders, nopoint on the religious part of the tech tree, and libraries as the just means of generating culture. I"m not certain that I"ve ever viewed an AI this inknowledgeable at city advance prior to. So Alex was crippled by having actually no cultural defenses external of his resources and also no axes on hand also to counter Mansa"s swords, which were slicing through the Greek archers and also chariots on defense via good abandon. This was an absolute disaster for Alex, and also it turned out that Mansa had actually favored the best moment to invade his neighbor.

Somewhat surprisingly, there were no other wars in this game in the time of the first 100 turns. Mansa Musa built Chichen Itza (starting Taoism as the Code of Laws religion), and also that confirmed to be a beneficial wonder in his war versus Alex. The city of Corinth was appropriate on the Greek border and didn"t manage fifty percent of its initially ring tiles, however it was able to pick up the +25% defenses from Chichen Itza, adhered to by an additional +50% defenses from a cheap stone-discounted city wall surfaces, and also that made it basically inbreakable to repeated Greek counterattacks. On the other hand, Mansa sniped off an additional one of the isolated Greek cities in the south and used his marble to develop the Mausoleum 3 transforms prior to Lincoln can built it. That was an additional vital wonder that was helping Mansa to catch approximately the Americans and close the gap via their at an early stage lead. Soon Lincoln was affiliated in his own war:

Gilgamesh initiated the dispute that had actually been unavoidable considering that this map was rolled on Turn 105. I fairesulted in capture the main Sumerian stack in this screenswarm, which was directed versus the American city of San Francisco in the northwest corner of Lincoln"s empire. That city dropped automatically to Gilgamesh, and this looked like it could be a effective invasion. However, this is wright here peace weight hregarding be preserved in mind, and its function in shaping exactly how the AI vs AI diplomacy plays out. Gilgamesh has actually a really low peace weight while Lincoln and Hammurabi both have actually very high tranquility weight scores. Similar tranquility weights made Lincoln and Hammurabi excellent friends who would practically never assault one an additional. As a result, when Hammurabi intervened in the battle it was a certainty that he would involved Lincoln"s assist, which pertained to pass on Turn 116. Now the Sumerians were required to fight against both of the AI civs in the south, and also Gilgamesh wasn"t strong sufficient to pull that off. San Francisco was recaptured and the Sumerians were required to loss back on the protective. It"s likewise worth taking a look at the religious landscape in the corner of that screenswarm. There were five Islamic countries... and then poor Gilgamesh via his very own self-established Confucianism. He was on the wrong side of the religious divide and points were only going to get worse from right here.

In the north, Mansa"s onslaught against Alexander continued. He caught Sparta on Turn 107, and also then the press was on for the Greek capital. Mansa had actually picked up Construction technology by now and unlocked catapults, and also the surrounding existence of ivory was enough to put elephants into the field as well. Alex was able to respond to with his own elephants, which was a good point because he quickly lost his only source of horses to Malinese society. Fortunately for him, Greek borders finally expanded to pick up the iron resource and lug steel systems into play for the initially time. Mansa was cottaging up a storm ago in his core, and also that merged with the at an early stage Representation civic from the Pyramids was resulting in his technology price to explode. Mansa"s initial strike versus the city of Athens came up brief, so he ssuggest came ago aget with maces this time and sealed the deal:

Keep in mind that Alex"s just iron source (directly listed below the "has actually been" message in the over screenshot) has been pillaged and disassociated aobtain. If it weren"t for an ivory resource at the isolated Greek city in the southern, Alexander would certainly have been unable to construct anypoint yet archers. His absence of key strategic sources - largely because of his own inexperienced city monitoring - had actually been a huge worry in this battle. Now the game was start to turn right into a race as to who might acquire even more out of their particular battles. It appeared particular that Mansa would conquer the remaining Greek cities eventually. Could Lincoln manage to perform the exact same thing and also absorb Gilgamesh"s territory? The complicating variable here was the existence of Hammurabi, that was "helping" Lincoln in the war however additionally threatened to take some of the Sumerian cities for himself. In truth, the initially Sumerian city to be caught went over to the Babylonians, not the Americans. I"m certain Lincoln was rolling his eyes at that kind of assistance.

Then things were additionally complicated in the southern by the entrance of the game"s forgained AI leader, as Suleimale claimed war on Hammurabi on Turn 139. He regulated to capture the Babylonian city on their respective border at the very same time that Mansa was wiping out the southern Greek enclave:

The substantial winner below showed up to be Lincoln, who would now have the possibility to clean up the remaining Sumerian cities as soon as Hammurabi recalled his pressures for residence defense. Only - that didn"t happen, as Hammurabi ongoing to assault Sumerian cities despite the Ottoguy invasion. In reality, 3 of the initially 4 Sumerian cities to loss were captured by the Babylonians, even as their core was getting pillaged ago at home. What the heck was Hammurabi doing?! This was a troll task appropriate up tright here via Wang Kon from last year"s AI Survivor. Madness.

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As if points weren"t going poor enough for Gilgamesh, he shortly learned why it"s a negative idea to be the only Confucian leader in a world full of Muslims:

The Apostolic Palace strike again! Hammurabi had used his control of the wonder to force a war declaration of everyone else versus negative Gilgamesh. If he hadn"t been doomed already, he absolutely was finiburned now. Nopoint changed for the minute in valuable terms, since Suleimale was also far amethod to invade and Alex certainly wasn"t sending any soldiers. Mansa Musa would look to gain connected here though, when his existing intrusion of Greece was over. We had actually a race on our hands for the First to Die category, whether the combined pressures can end up off Gilgamesh or if Mansa would emerge victorious in his lonely struggle against Alex. This was a surprisingly cshed contest as expensive militaries congregated on the staying cities of the outgoing leaders.

As it turned out, Mansa Musa won the race and also removed Alexander first:

Solo kills are relatively rare in AI Survivor because of just how challenging they are to pull off. It"s even more common for leaders to be got rid of in a fashion equivalent to Gilgamesh in this game, brought down by a mix of multiple battles over a long time or intrusions from more than one party. The inexplicable solo kills tfinish to be the most useful though, considering that all of the spoils of war go to a single leader. Mansa now managed a huge empire that extended across the optimal of the map, and also via his awesome economic traits, a bevy of effective wonders, and the many area in the game, he was about to leave the various other AI leaders in the dust.

Gilgamesh was thrvery own out of the game just 5 turns after Alex, via Hammurabi narrowly claiming the kill. There were big American and Malinese pressures right following door that had also been chomping at the little bit to take that last city. This had been a little bit of a hard game for Gilgamesh and also Alexander, as 2 low peace weight leaders in a game through 3 high tranquility weight opponents. Still, it wasn"t external the realm of opportunity that they could have come out on top in this game, specifically if Suleimale had actually played a much more skilled game and also joined them. Gilgamesh had actually been crippled in this game by the pressures of faith, via Hammurabi"s hoarding of the at an early stage faiths leading to a universal Islamic block that hated the Sumerian practice of Confucianism. Mansa Musa had actually founded 2 other faiths and wisely avoided swapping to either of them. As for Alex, he had greatly been done in by his very own incompetence. He was making 13 beakers/revolve at a time as soon as Mansa was making 80 beakers/revolve, and when we checked aacquire later, it was something choose 35 beakers/turn versus 200 beakers/revolve. That was never going to end well for him, also without his baffling lack of society and horrendous resource administration. Alex deservedly won his Darwin Award for this game.

Of course, now that the two aggressive AI leaders were gone from the game, we finished up through the natural result of having actually many tranquil contractors in the game: a long period of tranquil building.

That"s a snapshot of the diplomatic relationships screen, an indication of how all the leaders felt about one one more. This is color-coded via green noting "Friendly" connections, the highest possible they will certainly go, and then on down to "Pleased" in blue, "Cautious" in white, "Annoyed" in purple, and also "Furious" in red. Of course, everything right here was either "Pleased" or "Friendly" and also that was type of the allude. Shared Islamic faith and mutual army struggle against Gilgamesh had actually made this one substantial happy lovefest. Even Hammurabi and also Suleimale were on great terms despite their previously war, which had actually ended after a short time via no cities permanently altering hands. For the following 100 turns tright here was basically no armed forces activity of any type of kind. Suleiman briefly claimed war on Hammurabi on Turn 209, only to watch the war finished in two transforms through a most likely Apostolic Palace tranquility initiative. The civilization stayed at tranquility.

Mansa Musa had been just marginally ahead in score at the time that the warring ended. That began to adjust though, and also he shortly opened up up a vast lead sustained by technological developments. Mansa released a collection of Mausoleum-intensified Golden Ages and also torched his method with the tech tree, picking up every one of the game"s many expensive techs in one or two turns aitem. By Turn 250 he was more than a full era ahead, entering the Modern era while everyone else was still midmethod through the Renaissance. We were watching the diplomacy screen to view wbelow brand-new problems could break out, and also because Mansa will declare war at "Pleased", he can theoretically attack any kind of of the other civs. He had gone to Free Religion public and also that dropped relations out of the "Friendly" selection wbelow no AIs will certainly attack one another. None of the three other AI leaders in this certain game will certainly strike at "Pleased", however Suleimale had dropped to "Cautious" through Hammurabi and also might potentially launch a new war too. Nopoint a lot seemed to be happening though, as everyone stayed peaceful and also developed infrastructure in their cities. When Mansa introduced his spaceship on a fantastically beforehand Turn 271, it looked like we were going to reach the end of the game without additionally dispute.

But then for no factor at all, Mansa claimed war on Lincoln on Turn 280:

Whoa!

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Maybe he simply obtained bored after launching the spaceship and wanted a brand-new obstacle. Suleiman also asserted war on the same revolve, bringing our full battle declaration respond to as much as ten for the game. This strike had one exceptionally genuine consequence, as it dropped Lincoln"s score below Hammurabi"s in the incredibly close race for second location. The two of them had been neck and also neck for a while, only to view Lincoln inevitably pull amethod and reach a comfortable lead of around 250 points. However before, via Mansa"s substantial armies of tanks and mechs shattering their means through the border, Hammurabi was catapulted right into second area and got to the playoffs with dumb luck. This was one of the closest score races for second area that we"ve ever before seen, with a last second change in the scoring.

If Mansa had declared battle a dozen turns earlier, this game could well have ended by means of Domination. Instead, the Spaceship arrived in Alpha Centauri two turns after the war began and the game ended that way:

We therefore ended up through an exiciting initial 150 turns of the game, complied with by a long relaxed lull, and also then a last second bang ideal prior to the end up. Mansa emerged from a rocky opening to conquer this game in convincing fashion, his fourth win now in six total games played. We seem to be compiling more and more evidence that he"s one of the game"s ideal AI leaders. As much as the picking challenge goes, these last second shenanigans ended up transferring me a win in the scoring for this game (tied with Old Harry who had actually the same score). I had actually picked Hammurabi to complete in second place, and the Livestream viewers teasingly accsupplied me of rigging the outcome with that ending war. Well, I wish that I might setup things that well, heh. There"s constantly a lot of luck in these games and it taken place to break my way here. Mansa could have actually attacked Hammurabi just as easily at the finish, or sindicate assaulted 20 turns previously and also won through Domination instead of Spaceship. I"ve been pretty good at the picking contest over the last two periods but I"m not THAT great to forewatch a Turn 280 intrusion ideal prior to the spaceship arrives.

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Coming up in the playoffs, we"ll currently gain to watch Mansa in the same game as Gandhi in the ultimate build-a-thon. That have to be the majority of fun in a couple of weeks. Thanks aobtain for analysis.