How to Win on Deity Builder-Style, step-by-step.

This article is thought for C3C v 1.22

This article is devised to help deity Noobs or deity wannabes to win confidently on this level as builders. I take for granted you already know basic concepts such as settler-factories, REXing, Prebuilds, trading reputation, AI attitude, Golden Age etc … if you don’t, look them up in the strategy articles section or in the War Academy at CFC.

On Deity the AI has a series of “play balancing” bonuses from the start, such as:

– They start with an extra settler (their biggest advantage IMHO)
– with 8 defensive units
– with 4 offensive units
– two workers
– they have a discount of 40% building rate over the human player.
– two-turn anarchy
– additional free support per city
– AI-AI trade bonus of 170

Is it humanly possible to overcome these bonuses ? Sure it is. The AI remains as dum no matter the difficulty level.

Winning as a Warmonger on Deity is a more daunting task and requires a player to be very skilled and know all the nooks and crannies of the game inside-out. So we’ll leave that type of play style to them.

However, winning Deity focusing as a builder is very feasable and only a matter of practice. Anyone can attain it. I’ll explain you how:

I. Victory type sought: UNs vote or SS victory.

II. The World’s Settings:

1. You’ll choose huge pangaea (not archipiélago) worlds with 60% water (the minimum). (The larger the world the more you’ll profit from it being a builder player)
2. No barbarians/ no huts to pop. (benefits more the deity AI than you)
3. AI agressiveness to the maximum (profit becoming a war scavenger)
4. 15 randomly generated AI civs. (the more the merrier)
5. Accelerated production off.
6. Random seed preserved.
7. All victory conditions enabled (except the Wonder Victory)

III. Picking the right civ:

The civ must be chosen carefully.


I would advise for it to have the agricultural trait . This trait is the most powerful in C3C much as the industrious was back in PtW. Growth is –almost- everything, as highlighted in many articles.

As a second trait you will want it to be either: scientific, commercial or industrious.

You are not interested in playing an Expansionist civ because it’s a pangaea world, you’re bound to meet them anyway sending your warriors/king units as scouts. Plus there are no huts to pop which always seem to be more helpful for the AI. This trait is only useful during the REXing phase and you’re looking for a trait that’ll be useful through out the whole game.

You are not interested in a Seafaring civ because this is not an archipiélago map, it’s pangaea we are talking of. Forget the Lighthouse.

You are not interested in the Religious trait because you are only going to change governments once in the game: from despotism to republic. Plus you are not aiming for a culture victory with this strat. A cultural vic on deity is more difficult and isn’t the point of this article.

This is a builder-style game, so obviously the Military trait won’t be suitable. Perhaps back in PtW when GMLs could rush GWs I would’ve changed my mind. But in C3C only SGLs can rush GWs and it’s the scientific trait that’ll be useful.

You want to be Scientific: because you may build cheap libraries and above all you’ll want your free tech when entering a new era so you can shop it around. You even have a 5% chance of spawning a SGL being the first to discover a tech. Useful trait all game round, probably the best second trait for this strat besides agri.

You want to be Commercial: because at Deity you’ll need all the gold you can to trade. It’s useful throughout all the game.

You may want to be Industrious: to build things at a faster rate. Again, a useful trait all game through.

Ideal civs for this builder strat:

Sumerians, Mayans, Iroquois, Netherlands, Greeks(*) and any other agri civ.

(*)= o.k. they are not agri but they are good to play with. They’ll prove an additional challenge.

B. For it’s UUs:

On Emperor or below you’re probably more interested in an offensive unit whereas in deity a defensive one is more suitable (from a builder standpoint). The very cheap and early enkidu warrior, the swiss-mercenary, the greek hoplite all suit their purpose, being the MW the exception as a fast offensive UU.

However, I must point out that the AI rates you military according to your offensive power. So the AI will rate more highly two warriors with a combined attack of 2 (one each) than a regular spearman with attack 1. So a builder player should really be building offensive units and not deffensive ones so as to keep the aggressive AI at bay. That’s why your military adviser says you are weak in comparison to other civs because it doesn’t count as much your huge defensive army, amongst other issues.

Step-by-step guide to win on Deity builder-style:

1. In the Ancient Age you’ll build two or three warriors as scouts to explore the map and meet other civs. You may want to build two canoes or galleys to go on exploring on opposite directions as well (less advisable). You want to have met as many civs as possible once you build the GL. With Mass Regicide enabled you may use your 7 king units to explore the map (they have 2 movement points) so there is no need for building warriors or scouts to explore. It is important to start off somewhere in the middle of the map and not in some lousy corner so you may come across asap with as many AI civs as you can. Ideally you should have met 11 civs or more out of 15 once the GL has been completed. You will set the science slider to zero from turn one and raise the luxury bar to 30-40% to make gold and allow fast growth, have no entertainers. You will barter your two initial starting techs with the other AI civs for gold and techs with your aims set on trading for Alphabet so as to beeline to Literature. Once you trade for Alphabet, you will raise the science slider to the minimum of 10-20% so as to discover Writing in 50 turns or less or else continue to have it in zero and trade for Writing aswell when available. No use raising the science slider above that. Once you discover Writing or trade for it, you will research for Literature at full throttle even reducing the luxury slider to zero or 10%, even researching at a loss of gpt. You will not trade Writing or Literature, If necessary you go to war so as not to give into the demands of other AIs who demand Literature, the reason being is that there is a wonder cascade going on and if you give the AI Literature chances are strong that someone will complete the GL before you and this whole Deity strategy will be negated. Try not to trigger your GA with your UU in an early war. You can only trigger your GA after the GL has expired for this strategy to work out properly.

2. Starting as an Agri civ you’ll start on a river and next to some food bonus (wheat, sugar, banana, cows). If you happen to start on a floodplain it may be not necessary to build a granary in that city. You’ll want two or three cities with granaries. You’ll build a granary in your capital. Your capital will act as a settler-factory churning out settlers every 4 turns, the second city will build only warriors and the third only workers. I call it the “Magic Triangle”.

3. You must start to REX asap. You’ll build warriors (no spearmen), workers and settlers. You ought to have two workers for every city you have on average. You will not escort your settlers. It doesn’t matter If some cities are ungarrisoned. The AI is also busy expanding rapidly and covering all the land still available. Pump out those settlers !!

4. You can pull it off with only 7-8 cities. Capital in the middle surrounded by a ring of 6-7 cities. It’s ok if you can’t build the FP, no sweat. Even if you build it in the Industrial Age after some war you can still win. You can win this game with ten cities. Don’t worry if your city tiles are overlapping with one another, it’s only normal at this high level of gameplay. Forget the idea of having a 21 radii-tile-city perfectly worked and no overlapping tiles; that only spells for disaster at Deity. Get used to living in cramped quarters. Real estate is overpriced !

5. Being the AI at its most aggressive setting frequent wars will be unleashed. You just make sure to stay out of them and have settlers ready for when the time comes to fill in the gaps of razed cities. You are taking advantage of the AI’s way of acting doing the opposite and cashing in on it whether it be wars, derided techs etc…

6. On your best/most productive city, normally the capital where the palace is, you’ll mine most tiles, if you have a cow or two that’d be great, mine them. Start roading the food bonus tile, then mine it, then move to the river tiles to get that extra gold bonus the sooner the better. Whip settlers if required.

7.You’ll trace a bee-line to Literature (discovering it around 1000 BC). Your wonder city should reach size 10 at least 8 turns before you discover Literature and size 12 when building it. You cannot do a prebuild in the capital city (masonry required) and it’s not required either, so don’t worry use as a prebuild a temple or whatever. Join workers to the wonder city if necessary to bring it to size 12 asap. It’s an exciting race against time to complete this essential Great Wonder. You should be producing like 20-23 shields per turn. Micromanage.

8. Once you discover Literature put the science slider to zero and have it like that until you learn Education.

9.You will build the Great Library (around 600 BC). It takes some practice to do it, so be sure you build it. Don’t conquer it, this is a builder-style game. You’ll do the bashing later on in the game, believe me. This is the only Ancient Age wonder you’ll waste your precious time and resources in. It’s well-worth it. If you miss it start a new game all over again until you build it. This strategy pivots on the GL.

10. You’ll trade your way through to Writing once the techs start pouring in. You’ll build embassies with ALL civs, with your immediate neighbours first. You’ll sign RoP with ALL of them. You give techs, gold, luxuries whatever is reasonably necessary in exchange. You do this to avoid unwanted wars. The AI will not attack you, normally, with RoP signed providing you keep up your good reputation and stay true to your deals. If you can trade workers from other civs, just do it, the earlier on you do it the more they’ll get slowed down in building infrastructure and it’ll hurt them, specially if they have the Industrious trait.

11.You will trade techs for lump sum or gpt If you can. Don’t forget to haggle always.Gpt is your aim so as to make them broke and slow their fast-paced research rate. The more gold they trade you, the less they’ll have for research. It will be YOU who will be doing all the research from the late Middle Ages onwards and cashing in on it.

12.You will acquire all the luxuries you can. Being pangaea you don’t have to wait until Navigation to get all of them, from the early Middle Ages you ought to have access to all of them. Your luxury slider should be at zero typically all along the game, except in the initial REXing phase to avoid entertainers and in the odd war or so. Build granaries, libraries, marketplaces …

13.You must change governments to Republic as soon as it is available and stick to it untill you win the game.

14.You shouldn’t start any wars untill you have Military Tradition. You will give into all AI demands, be it gold, maps or techs. Yeah, yeah it’s crap but learn how to kneel first.

15. In the Middle Ages trade your free tech around if you’re Scientific (it will normally be Feudalism; gift in, if neccessary, other scientific AIs into the new era so as to trade for their free techs). It’s difficult to stop the wonder cascade in the Middle Ages, forget it. Once you learn Education, the GL becomes obsolete (around 270 AD), you will trigger your Golden Age with your UU on the following turns because late Middle Ages you’ll be running behind in the tech tree. The exact moment to trigger your GA changes from one game to another. I suggest you trigger it once you have Banking so as to build banks swiftly. It is paramount not to leave many turns go by (20-40 approx) between the obsolescence of the GL and triggering your GA, so plan ahead for this moment. A war is neccessary to trigger your Golden Age with your UU. I always choose some close or not far away feable neighbour. I send a galley with two UUs, perch them atop a mountain (for defensive bonus) and force them to declare war on me. You will have amassed by now at least twenty horses which you’ll upgrade to cavalry. This is a defensive war, don’t play offensive and try to sue for peace asap. You’ll make that other civ declare war on you making them mad and asking them to withdraw their troops from your land. Be sure your RoP agreement has finished with that target civ beforehand, don’t renew it planning for your GA-war. You will sign a military alliance (MA) with all civs against your targeted foe. You cannot risk a war with more than one civ. Be sure to spawn some GML so as to start the Military Academy. You may use later the Armies as prebuilds or as a deterrent to other aggressive civs. Don’t sign peace until twenty turns have gone by so as not to get a reputation hit with the other civs you’ve signed the MA. Remember you are aiming for a diplo win or SS, your reputation should remain flawless until the UNs vote if you choose this victory type.

16. Use your GA to build banks (universities should be rushed if you are scientific), factories etc… don’t waste your time building military units, you’ll have plenty of time for that later on. Using your GA and combining it with all the gold you will have saved up with your zero research due to the GL will enable you to research at a maximum rate now of 90-100%. I advise reading DaveMcW’s article on AI’s Favorite Techs to learn what monopoly techs you should be researching and trading for in your game.

17. You ought to have saved a fair amount of gold already. Start researching at the max possible (90-100%) techs that the AI will disregard first in the Middle Ages such as in the top end of the tech-tree: Printing Press, Banking, Economy then swap over to the lower end of the tech tree: Chemistry, Metallurgy, Military Tradition and trade for them. You may even start a prebuild on Adam Smith’s. I normally build Adam Smiths and Newton’s University (Copernicus Obervatory is another option of course). Trade these Monopoly Techs to all and be sure you get gpt. You want to make them broke. With all the gold you’ve saved up during the effects of the GL and with the added boost of your GA you ought to be racing ahead technologically. Make sure they learn Banking asap (even gifting it to ALL AIs) so they build banks asap and have all their gold funneled to you through smart trading of techs. By the end of the Middle Ages you ought to have 10.000 gold. Until the end of the Middle ages you’ve been playing catch up from behind building up your infrastructure (mines, roads, libraries, universities, banks, harbors …).

18. In the Industrial Age your free tech will normally be Nationalism or Medicine. Gift in, if neccessary, other scientific AIs into the new era so as to trade for their free techs. Entering the Industial Age is the key moment in this strategy because you will leach economically on the other leading AI civs for your free tech for as much as 330 gpt and you must set the science slider to 100% even If at a loss of gpt (which I doubt If you’ve heeded my instructions properly). It should be you brokering techs to the top and most advanced AI civs making at least 1000 gpt even at 100% research rate. Go for Steam Power, Industrialisation, Medicine, Sanitation (build or rush hospitals in every city, you have the Agricultural trait, don’t neglect it), Electricity, Scientific Method. If you have the Scientific trait you might pop a SGL (5% chance) when discovering Scientific Method. You’ll have a prebuild on ToE. Obviously while the ToE is finsihed being built you will set your science slider to zero. Once built you readjust your science slider and choose as your two free techs Atomic Theory and Electronics. You’ll also have a prebuild for Hoovers Dam. You may not have realised it yet, but the game is pretty much over now at this stage once you build this Great Wonder at around 1250 AD. Make sure they learn Corporation asap (even gifting it to all AIs) so they can all build Stock Exchanges asap and have all their gold funneled to you through smart trading of techs. You’ll start a well-timed prebuild aiming for the United Nations. Trade all these techs around assuring you will complete the great wonders. You might be tempted to steal techs once you trade for Espionage, but If you are using this builder-strategy properly there’s just no need to resort to stealing techs, at least if at all, until the Modern Age; besides, it will be you whose the most technologically advanced civ in the game so there’ll be hardly any techs at all to steal anyways ! You ought to have now at least 20.000 gold at the end of the Industrial Age (I’ve reached well over 100 k by this stage). It’s fairly normal to strike deals for up to as much as 575 gpt. I’ve had the Persians paying me, in two different tech gpt deals, as much as 1.000 gpt. Be careful, the AI might go broke (specially if it’s a Warmonger civ such as the Zulus or Aztecs) and declare you war to stop paying all together. You ought to be raking in approx 2.000 gpt from your cities and anywhere between 1.000 and 2.000 gpt from the AI civs in your game. Your science rate will be at 90-100% and your luxury slider at zero (if you have 8 luxs) or 10%. Even having the science slider at 100% you ought to be raking in approx 1.400 gpt from other civs, truly impressive. You can easily change your game from Builder to Warmonger at this stage with Motorized Transportation (tanks) If you wish albeit you’ll risk losing the UNs vote. You ought to build all Industrial Great Wonders prebuilding with your palace.

19. You enter the Modern Age at around 1350-1400 AD. Very rarely do they give you Computers as your free tech being scientific. It will normally be either Ecology, Fission or Rocketry. Gift a scientific civ into the Modern Age if neccesary so as to trade their free tech. Shop it around with all the others. You must build the UNs. Research the lower end of the tech tree: Computers (have a prebuild for SETI), Miniaturisation (prebuild for Internet), then go for whatever suits you. If you already own Newton’s University try to build SETI in that same city. Steal techs safely for 5.500 gold. The AIs will pay dearly in such a huge map for a Modern Age tech. I’ve been paid as much as 47.500 gold for Computers lump sum (it has a wonder associated to it). Be sure you haven’t finished the wonder when you shop it around because that’ll diminish its face value. Avoid at all costs the Wonder Cascade of Manhattan Proyect, SETI, UN, Internet. Delay if neccesary by one turn the trade so as to be sure they don’t build the wonder before you. A human player should have no trouble building two or three late Middle Ages wonders, all Industrial and all Modern Age wonders with the help of well-timed prebuilds at Deity.

20. Choose between an SS or Diplomatic victory. Typically, you ought to finish the game around the XIV-XV centuries for a diplo win and XVI or later for a SS victory in a huge pangaea deity map. You should end up with, at least, 40.000 gold stashed in your bank account (even If you’ve been cash-rushing units and improvements). It’s not surprising to reach well over 100k in the Modern Era. It’s Builder Power :p !

Takes you around 15-30 hours to complete.

Main point is that you do tech-surf all the time and then cash in on it.

It’s a sort of broker strategy (War Academy) coupled in with triggering you GA at the right time.


Sample DEITY and SID games employing this Builder Strategy with American saves. C3C v.1.22: