Old World (pka Ten Crowns) from Soren Johnson

This is the right answer. A Holy City is a city where the religion was founded (including paganism), a Holy Site is one of the four religion-specific wonders that Disciples build.

Yup, you tend to have to learn this the hard way, after the fact.

that makes sense, dont know why i was confused. i ended up winning with a double score victory by getting a bonus science point by only defending until turn 120, then taking over Rome when theyunwisely declared war, and getting a bonus science victory point every 2 years for the last 10 (I think) years. This made me happy as it seemed a very “Babylon-like” way to win; I wanted the game to have more of a builder feel than my usual Rome or Greece game. The topography of the map helped a lot, one strong neighbor was blocked by mountains and could only invade by sea.

The other thing I think about this terrific game, is that it’s really wonderfully fighty. Not just because the AI puts up stiff resistance. The balance between building/developing cities and impaling Romans with sticks is just excellent. You need the one for the other etc but it rarely seems out of balance where you’re only developing cities whilst the AI fiddles.

Currently hacking and slashing my way towards victory and having to contest every yard of ground. There’s a really great tight relationship between what you do in your cities with your workers and how many centurions’ heads you get to nail to your city walls.

I have definitely encountered longeurs towards the end of various double victories where economically etc am miles ahead but right now playing as Assyrians its just glorious slaughter all the way. Marvellous. Barbarians are set on some high level and they never let up.

My goodness, can Persia’s unique ranged cavalry do some silly things. They hit like trucks, and ranged rout is sometimes just an absolute beating.

Finished crushing my second game, this time on baby (the Good) difficulty instead of tiny baby difficulty. Learned a lot w/r/t tech ordering and what’s super important, how to manage relationships, and city specialization. Looking forward to applying it to the next difficulty up. Still just absolutely loving the game.

In my current game, I am at Peace with Rome and have been consistently sending my caravans to them (btw, that paid off really well in terms of gold, so I’d highly recommend caravans!). In my current 85 years into the game, I see a lot of Roman armies surrounding the borders of my two cities. Either they are planning a hostile takeover but unable to do so because of the Peace pact between us or the AI is stuck in an infinite loop and does not know what to do. They should be declaring war on my neighbour, the Assyria. This made me nervous and I am investing all of my orders to build an army for an impending attack instead of working on something else.

I have something similar going on with the Assyrians in my current game. They’re in solid second place behind me, don’t actually like me much (I think they’re like -50 after their old prickly asshole king finally died), and have a big pile of units sitting near me but don’t seem interested in invading.

They might be kinda confused because I’m between them and the Greeks and Egyptians, at least one of which they’re probably at war with.

Me, I’m ensuring that King Fuckstick of Greece and his crazy massive stats (seriously he’s like 8/9/3/4) goes to his grave bitter and defeated after he foolishly seized a pretext for a war of revenge after losing two Greek colonies to the Darius the Great in his youth.

(Spoilers: King Fuckstick lived just long enough to sign an embarrassing peace treaty. Bwaha.)

I just figured out that force-marching a unit actually works like this, where for some reason I thought it was basically “you can double move this dude this turn.”

  • You pay 100 training.
  • Unit ignores fatigue limit until end of turn.
  • Moving (but not cooldown actions) take 2 orders instead of 1 for that unit this turn.

So if you have enough orders – say your leader is an Orator and you’re playing Persia – you can absolutely hump armies across freaking continents in a single turn. Good times, good times.

Force moving is so tremendously disruptive to the conventions of these games that it might have destroyed other 4Xs for me. I mean, it wouldn’t work without Old World’s orders system, and the way training is a resource, and maps built to be wide open, and the unit balance, and the fatigue model, and a dozen other variables Mohawk smartly designed into the game. But otherwise, every game should have force marching like this!


I tried a game where I actually emphasized military tech instead of economic boom and it is fun how you can bully the AI. It’s still too hard to capture cities unless you have many units, or siege weapons (I think AI doesn’t do well against siege). Camp + grind down the AI when you get siege, works well. But to be fair maybe it’s one of the scenarios where a human wouldn’t have an answer either.

There are definitely some optimization fruit that Mohawk could pick. I started noticing performance degradation around turn 90 on my monster beast (less than a year old, 3070, etc, etc).

To be fair I have everything cranked, but I’m relatively confident that this machine should be able to play Old World at 1440p with everything on without issues.

Maybe some or all of the improvements involve high enough definition models/maps/shadows that get expensive with a bunch of them onscreen? That’s the biggest difference in terms of what’s being displayed lategame vs early, anyway. But I’m no graphicsologist; I’ll leave that to the pros.

@SorenJohnson: a couple of bugs. Firstly, the bug reporter in the in-game menu isn’t working (unable to submit).

Secondly, this event fired as I was conquering the city, not as it was being attacked. There were no nearby enemies. The generated troops were in Marad, on the opposite side of the map.

Sadly it looks like the AI doesn’t know what to do with island maps, even with all the excellent AI work in other areas.

Good choice for a peaceful/builder type game, I suppose.

I suspect this is the same situation as the AI not knowing how to use siege units. I haven’t seen the AI do anything with naval units, and I’ve been almost exclusively playing the Seaside map, which seems to put Tribes out on islands off the coast (I don’t know if this is how the Seaside script works or if it’s just been a coincidence). As near as I can tell, these are pretty much mine for the taking because of the AI’s inability to play the naval game. Is anybody seeing anything differently?

I’m also worried about the AI and religion. I’m setting up games now to specifically avoid World Religions so I can see how the AI handles them. Does it build religious buildings? More importantly, does it slot theologies to make its religions more powerful? I hope so, but I haven’t seen it yet. Have any of you guys seen the AI leverage World Religions?

My concern is that there are whole gameplay systems the AI simply can’t handle. If that’s the case, I can feel gravity starting to pull me down the far side of the Chick Parabola. :(


I played an Archipelago map. I saw precisely one successful AI naval invasion, against a tribal village. I did see it anchor some biremes about to generate bridges to enemy cities, but other than that once it never actually sent any units. Perfect for a safe builder game, but definitely not what’s really needed from the AI.

The thing I’m most concerned about right now though is the AI’s ability to improve its lands. I did a late game attack (on Magnificent) and my target’s cities didn’t even have all their special resources improved, let alone many other tiles. I’m not sure how they’re supposed to remain competitive, really.

Yeah, that was a double victory on turn 89 on Contemplating Competition (the Strong) difficulty, with like 13 friggin’ cities at the end. The AI just never went anywhere. I wonder if it needs to be all-but-forced into taking Exploration instead of Epics on watery maps, and it definitely needs to understand bridges better.

I saw the AI doing a lot of pointless naval unit dancing in this game (I had vision of Persia’s capital after they declared on me from an event, not really sure why but anyway). It definitely built the boats, just seemed not to know what they were for.

Boy, this would be a big one if the AI isn’t approaching religion effectively. Religion is (or can be, anyway) key to discontent management and science, and can generate a ton of culture as well.

One thing I’ve now noticed a couple times is a kind of weird interaction between what I assume is either a soft or hard cap on characters in your empire and the way new characters are spawned. I have seen a couple times a very middle-aged court (including family characters who are serving as governors/generals/heads) finally start dying off, at which point they die off in freaking droves, and then 3-7 turns later a big wave of youth finally show up after getting no youngsters in the system for years and years.

Dunno if it’s a difficulty thing where death chances are turned down and you end up with these waves of characters dying and spawning or what, but it at least seems like it’s a thing that’s happening. Could very well be the ol’ human pattern-recognition algorithm misfiring too.

I really hope Old World isn’t relying on the model I mentioned earlier, similar to a racing game where you start in last place and have a certain number of laps to catch up. Seems to me the worst case scenario for the AI in Old World* is that it’s counting on starting out with the huge advantage of developed cities and then stumbling along while you spend your 200 turns trying to catch up and eventually pass it.

I would love to know more about how population spawning and death work in the game. I asked about character deaths in gameplay questions thread, but didn’t get any responses.


* which is still pretty good compared to the average braindead 4X

I think that asterisk, or the remark attached to it, belongs at the beginning of your commentary. And “pretty good” is an understatement of British dimensions. It seems Old World is suffering from an excess of love here.

Just to clarify, I’m talking about its AI, which I’m less and less impressed with the more I play. Even if my concerns bear out, I think the AI is “pretty good compared to the average braindead 4X”. But I’m more reserved than some others in these threads for how I’m not ready to sing it any hosannas yet.


The AI will definitely build religious improvements, and I have seen it establish theologies but it’s possible that doesn’t happen often. (The issue is probably making sure they have enough civics on hand.) The AI used to anchor their navy a bunch… in fact, the problem we had a few months ago was the AI overbuilding their navy, so it could be there are some issues there. At any rate, the AI should/will be able to handle all of these unit actions, and we are still digging out of launching issues, so it’ll all be handled in time. Our approach is that the AI is supposed to play the unit side of the game as well as the player, and we will keep updating weekly. This won’t be one of those things where you have to hang your hat on some patch that might or might not happen next year. Going to send that save to Alex as I am curious why those three catapults went to the eastern city - although I was afraid from scanning the thread that the AI was literally not using their onagers, which at least is not the case.

For characters and families, by the way, the game adds characters periodically if there are less than a certain threshold which goes up per city that family has. Based on pure chaos, they should be of all different ages by the mid-game but would be happy to take a look if they do have some sort of weird generational resonance.