Civ III map settings question--choices for easiest game?

My niece saw me playing Civ 3, and she wants to try it. She’s leafed through the manual. The question I have is, what combination of map settings–in terms of age of planet, water coverage, etc–will produce a map with the most resources and food, etc? I don’t want her scared off the game early :).

The defaults, with a minimum number of other civs and no barbarians.

Also pick some of the more peaceable civs as your oppponents, to avoid the random picker choosing, say, Inca Zulu and Mongol, which wouldn’t make for a quiet life. Peaceful types: Babylon, India, Ottoman, China.

Great ideas, thanks guys :)

But would say, lowering the planet age to 3 million years, create more resources on map? Can I fiddle with THOSE settings to produce an easier map with more resources?

No, in fact there would be lots more mountains, so probably less resources.

Then what would be the effect of increasing planet age to 5 billion years? Would that do it?

The default selection for planet age really is the easiest.

If you make the planet younger, you get a lot of mountains, which will make Iron plentiful but limits the amount of farmland. If you make it too old, you get a lot of jungle and desert, with very little mountain. Among other things, that makes Iron difficult to come by, which really sucks.

If you are prepared to use the supplied scenario/modding tool (it’s called Civ3Edit or some such, in the same folder as the main .exe), you can customise your BIC file (the global settings file) to alter resource availability, I think. It has half-decent builtin help, as I recall.

If you do this,

SAVE YOUR ORIGINAL BIC FILE

before even running the editor at all. Trust me on this one :oops:

you might want to try archipelago with low sea level (the one of the far right). Archipelago games are usually a little easier since you have less neighbors, but since the sea level is low, you won’t fell “pinched”.

I think contact with other civs is what makes Civ Civ. Plus, I think land games are easier because there is none of that naval stuff getting in the way of building your army. I also think that too few opponents makes the game harder, because there’s not enough tech horse trading to move people along.

I would go for two to three civs less than the recommended number for a given map size. And I would start with an expansionist civ, since the goody huts will pose no problems and you can see a lot of the map.

Troy

I have mixed feelings about this, but that’s because I always felt like the AI never gave me a fair deal on tech trades, at least not when compared to the inter-AI exchanges. While I would agree that the diplomatic interaction/trading is a big part of the game, it can also be one of the most difficult aspects for new players to grasp. I agree that picking peace-oriented opponents probably goes a long way towards alleviating this.

  • Alan

I have mixed feelings about this, but that’s because I always felt like the AI never gave me a fair deal on tech trades, at least not when compared to the inter-AI exchanges. [/quote]

This is true, but if you get the Great Library, you get ahead faster if the AI controlled powers can talk to each other.

On the other hand, at the easiest difficulty, it’s not too hard to stay ahead of the AI, so maybe it is best to keep them apart.

Troy

Ha! I knew you were still lurking here, Soren.

What’s the story on cartoonish leader portraits? I haven’t seen a whole lot of screenshots of the diplomacy interface. It seems like with the move to 3d and the Gamebryo engine, the whole game might be sliding a little more toward the cartoony end of the spectrum. Just curious, since it came up in another thread…

edit: Here’s the quote:

They did the same thing with Civ III, and I didn’t like it there either. An insincere, lightly-amusing Maxis-esque sense of humor.

“Look at this famous world leader who was my enemy! He’s all beaten up with a silly grin and a bent dart stuck in his cartoon head! HAHA! I’ve just killed millions of people and ethnically cleansed a few million more. HAH HAH HAHAHAHAAA!”

From the Pirates! on X-Box thread.

There should be a file that has tons of global information in it that you can edit. Find that one, and you can make a really fun easy Civ or Alpha Centauri.

1.Find a unit that is not used or seldom used by anyone, change the values to make it a settler, engineer, railroad mover, powerful combatant and reduce the importance computer civs place upon it.

2.Tie that unit to a technology that occurs early on, and make that tech’s importance nil to computer civs.
(Now the computer will never bother to discover your niece’s all-purpose trooper.)

You can also reduce the upkeep of city enhancements, and the construction costs of wonders.

If this is too complex, just figure out the fastest path to an early high power military advancement and show her how to focus on research.

So you recommend cheating?

Troy

I have mixed feelings about this, but that’s because I always felt like the AI never gave me a fair deal on tech trades, at least not when compared to the inter-AI exchanges. While I would agree that the diplomatic interaction/trading is a big part of the game, it can also be one of the most difficult aspects for new players to grasp. I agree that picking peace-oriented opponents probably goes a long way towards alleviating this.

  • Alan[/quote]

It depend on which level you play, but at Regent and below tech trading doesn’t play a big part in the game as you out-research the AI easily. At higher levels tech trading is necessary to keep pace with the AI. For a beginner playing on the lowest level Soren’s suggestion is a good one.

So you recommend cheating?

Yes.
It’s just a way to make the game more simple for a kid. They don’t have to decide what units to build, they don’t have to wait 400 years to make spearmen at Karkand, and they can use the units to explore and contact the other civilizations. Plus, the civilizations won’t steal or trade for the tech that gives the custom unit. I don’t know if little kids enjoy having to pay upkeep on improvements, but it is good to know that you have the option to take rules like that out of play.

The global file is included in an easy to edit format for that very purpose, and certain editions of the CivII and Alpha Centauri Manuals make reference to the practice. Think of it as the super easy setting.

For those of you who can’t find enough challenge, you can edit those same files to create new Civilizations with new personalities and pump the difficulty to the stratosphere.