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    Premium Member Ozyman
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    This thread is for the discussion of the board Invention.  Strategy, tactics, bug reports, desired future directions, etc. are all welcome here.


    I just released a new version of Invention on April 10th, 2012.  Here is what has changed:

    1. War techs now have bonuses of +1 (+2 for Nuclear ICBM). (instead of +2/+3)
    2. Espionage now attacks enemy techs at -1 (instead of +0).
    3. Capitals defend at +2. (instead of +3)
    4. The territories that border the capitals (the 'homeland') defend at +1 (instead of +0)
    5. Laboratories defend against war tech attacks at +1.
    6. Territories start with 5 units (instead of 3).
    7. Techs in the 2nd and 4th position can be skipped over.
    8. Initial neutral counts in techs are completely different.
    9. Added 'possession indicators' that show who owns each capital.
    10. 16 tech points in your flask at the beginning of the game (instead of 10).
    11. Africa's bonus is 5 extra units in the 'home land' instead of 10 extra units in the capital.
    12. UK no longer gets extra units in flask at the beginning of the game.
    13. Vaccines are now worth +3 (instead of +2).
    14. Changed card scales to be consistent in both scenarios.

    This was the result of extensive testing (thanks CK66, Cona Chris & Livia).

    Briefly, here are some of the problems that were the impetus behind the changes:

    1. War techs were way too powerful, and endgames could become annoying as every turn you 'needed' to attack over the entire map with your war techs.  This also meant that you ended up leaving 1s everywhere.
    2. Green and Blue techs were rarely used. 
    3. Espionage was almost a requirement to win. 
    4. Africa and the UK were better than the USA & China. 
    5. Players could get a lucky start and take out another civ very quickly or (in barbarians) take a civ very early and run away with the game.

    Edited Wed 11th Apr 00:58 [history]

  2. #2 / 69
    Enginerd weathertop
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    shall we move it to strategy forum so not to clutter up general discussion with worthwhile stuff?

    I'm a man.
    But I can change,
    if I have to,
    I guess...

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    Premium Member Ozyman
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    That is fine with me.  I felt like it was broader than just strategy, but maybe that forum is the best fit.  There was a discussion earlier about having a dedicated forum thread for a map and having a link to it in the board description, and I thought it was a great idea, so I plan on doing it for all my new maps (and maybe at some point some old ones too).  I'm not sure if anyone else had created a thread yet, but it probably makes sense to have them all in the same forum.


  4. #4 / 69
    Premium Member Ozyman
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    Here is my opinion on some basic strategy I'd love to hear if others agree with these, or think I'm wrong on some of my ideas.

     

    The Basics
    Try to get your nation (USA, UK, S. Africa, China) on your 1st or 2nd turn.  You will probably want to move some of the 16 in your flask to artillery to help clear out your nation.  China sometimes I will delay getting the nation until later and get computers sooner to make up for the missed tech points.

    Everyone play to your strengths: UK should try to get computers first or second turn.  China probably get 1st two life techs on first turn, and try to get nationalism by turn 5.  USA probably get Missiles by 3rd turn.  Africa try to get Congo 1st turn.

    If you start with two territories near the same lab (i.e. flask), think about taking it in the first few moves.  Definitely if you have 3 that can attack/fortify to a lab.    Exceptions to this are Western USA, Congo & (maybe) greenland, as these labs are especially valuable to their home civilization and will be very hard to hold.

    Don't forget labs 'come standard with bomb shelters', so if a player is devastating you with war techs, leave most of your units in a lab to get that defensive bonus against war techs.  Even better if that lab happens to be a good defensive point.

    The benefit of taking out an opponent is significant, but not overwhelming.  Don't overextend yourself.  Take someone out and you get their cards, and a few of the territories, and most importantly control of their flask.  If you are lucky you might pick up some high level techs.  

    It will take a few turns for you to effectively utilize your new civilization (i.e. picking up easy continents, securing labs, using your new techs).   The biggest benefit of controlling two capitals is the doubling up of lab bonuses.  All bonuses earned by your laboratories will get deposited in the flasks of every capital you control.  In concrete terms - having 4 labs gives you 10 tech a turn.  Take a second capital, and you get that +10/turn in both flasks.  Hold 5 labs and two capitals and you are getting 30 (15*2) tech each turn for it. 

    This can be very significant, almost doubling your earned tech, but you have to be able to hold those labs & capitals for a few turns for it to build up enough to be useful. Many maps on wargear have a cascade effect, where you take someone out, cash their cards, and use that to take out the next person, using the spoils of one elimination to get the next, etc.  Invention does not work like that, if you take someone out, you will see the benefit in a few turns (if ever).   Immediate benefit is minor.

    Continents with odd #s of territories are slightly better for bonuses than those with even #s of territories.

    Once you start down a tech branch, you cannot use new tech points on the same turn they are earned, but instead have to wait a turn as you fortify them into position.  Sometimes it is worth waiting a turn or two to start down a tech branch, so that you can utilize units in your flask directly and not be delayed by the fortify.

     

     

    Strategies for each Specific Civilization

    UK - Built for speed.  Lots of nearby 3 territory continents can get you big unit bonuses quickly.  Tiny home nation plus easy access to computers means you should be able to get 2+2+3=7 tech/turn very early.  Be aggressive and go for a quick win or early capital takeover.

    USA - Use your military might to take over North America.  Only 4/5 defensive points (4 if you take lab in Greenland).  Big unit bonuses once you get all of N.America.  Can expand into S.America without increasing # of defensive points.

    S. Africa - Capital is more secure than other civilizations, being a bit further from enemy areas.  Good to get S. Africa & Congo (defend from only 2 points) and then think about a second base outside your super continent in Australia or S. America or Middle East, or try to complete your super continent.

    China - Good for the long game.  Play slowly & carefully.  Tech can be hard to come by, because no nearby/good labs & a bit slower to get entire nation, so think about computers relatively early.  Flight/radar are also particularly good because of the size of Asia. Might want to get Australia/Oceana fairly early, as it doesn't increase # of defensive points.  If you can fill out your life tech tree and control much of Asia, your unit bonuses will become overwhelming, but this can take some time & you need to be earning decent tech to get into the top life techs in time.  Because blue/green techs are more useful, and because you need to get all the way to ICBM in the red tech before you can use it to help in Australia, Asia is one Civ where I often don't explore red techs until much later than usual - sometimes worth skipping Missiles, if you delay red tech research and already have much of Asia.




    Edited Mon 14th May 16:56 [history]

  5. #5 / 69
    Premium Member Ozyman
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    I'm working on an update to this map.  Right now the only change is a move to 6 techs in each branch instead of 5.  To make this fit, I also redid the graphics using icons instead of text:

    TechnologyAdvancedv1.png

     

    Any comments or suggestions on anything else to update?  Any volunteers for play testers on the update?

     


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    Standard Member itsnotatumor
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    I always thought go red ASAP for Asia because you can clear so much territory with Arty/Missiles, then use Green to slow build... 

    Fortune favors the bold, and chance favors the prepared mind...

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    Premium Member Cona Chris
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    I'm game to help test!


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    Premium Member Ozyman
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    Cona Chris wrote:

    I'm game to help test!

    I'm glad to hear it.  Not only are you well-ranked on this board, you were one of the original set of testers.  Thanks.  I'll invite you once I get a playable board.  Probably another week or so.


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    Standard Member Mongo
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    I'd be happy to test as well.


  10. #10 / 69
    Premium Member Ozyman
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    itsnotatumor wrote:

    I always thought go red ASAP for Asia because you can clear so much territory with Arty/Missiles, then use Green to slow build... 

    I feel kind of bad that my advice was the only one in this thread, because I'm ranked so badly on this board.  Maybe I'll try what you suggest & see if it helps any.


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    Premium Member Andernut
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    Sweet! An update!  I find that the aggressive techs are key in this map, a little change-up would be nice!


  12. #12 / 69
    Da King Thingol
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    Ozy, I'm up for testing any updates to this map as well.  Andernut, glad you made me aware of this one.


  13. #13 / 69
    Captain poq poq is offline now
    Standard Member poq
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    I'm up for testing as well, if you still need someone.


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    Standard Member itsnotatumor
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    Ozyman wrote:
    itsnotatumor wrote:

    I always thought go red ASAP for Asia because you can clear so much territory with Arty/Missiles, then use Green to slow build... 

    I feel kind of bad that my advice was the only one in this thread, because I'm ranked so badly on this board.  Maybe I'll try what you suggest & see if it helps any.

    I'd test, but I think I need to get my game count down for the X-mas season.  I've tried a mix of techs, with mixed successes. But, I'd agree war techs seem to be the most useful early.   Clearing Continent and Super Continent seems pretty key. 

    I'd be curious what Cona and the other top three think.

    Fortune favors the bold, and chance favors the prepared mind...

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    Premium Member Cona Chris
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    For the Default scenario (not Barbarians): After the changes were made to make the Invention map what it is today (it used to be slightly different, the red techs were so much more powerful), I have found that no real one strategy works in all situations (like the old map).  It really depends on what other people are doing.

    Some people don't use techs for quite a few turns and then suddenly they surprise you with all of a sudden getting ICBMs.  That's a nice use of techs because they can adjust on the fly and get whatever techs they find most useful after seeing what other people are doing.  I've not really tried that yet.

    As itsnotatumor said, getting your home continent (preferably on turn 1) is usually a good idea.  You can use missiles right away and barring bad dice you should be easily able to take over the home continent.  You can defend by bringing out units from the capital (generally you can get away with leaving the capital "bare" on the first turn or two... it's unlikely someone will gamble to hit you and take you out early).  If you are Asia, going for the first two green techs is a great idea - as you can get 4 units each turn in your capital.  It's hard to take over all of Asia, so you can get your units this way.  I generally play very aggressive with USA, kinda middle ground with Europe/Africa, and slow with Asia.

    Be smart about what you attack - don't go for a flask in someone else's home super continent - you are just making it easier for him/her to take over his/her super continent by taking out neutrals. 

    Sometimes when you get your super continent, it sends a "flag" out to the other players and then they come a knockin - you just have to know who you are playing and if they will do this or not.  Getting South America or Australia is nice because you aren't sending "alarm bells" to more experienced players with home continents.

    Red is still the most powerful tech, but you cannot just rely on getting your continents, then nuking the world and ensuring victory (you could do this on the first edition of this map - ah, I miss those days!).  Generally this strategy will not work unless you are playing opponents that do not know what is going on.  I've had some trouble adjusting :)

    I like to use Flight at some point during the first few turns because it's a way to get more units on the board.  It's a tough balance about expanding versus how much for defense, especially considering your defenses can be nuked away in no time. 

    On the end game, I find people tend to "turtle up" and stick 25 units or more in the capital, meaning taking it with anything but an attack from Espionage is generally a bad idea.  So, I usually won't even break into the territory next to the capital - you are giving them a shot to come at you with 25 units or more (or whatever else they have in their capital).  You can turn a sure win into a big problem when your opponent with no bonuses is able to launch 25+ units at you!

    Remember to protect the capital!  There are some players who leave 1 in the capital, and that's often a bad idea... with cards, someone is bound to take a swipe at you if you are ahead.  I have left 1 in the capital before, but usually it's when I need to gamble.

     


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    Premium Member Ozyman
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    Thanks for the comments Cona Chris.  I'm still grateful to you & livia & CK66 for the dozens of test games we played to get the balance right.

     

    Andernut wrote:

    Sweet! An update!  I find that the aggressive techs are key in this map, a little change-up would be nice!

    Are you talking about the red/war techs?  I think the new edition red techs will be toned down a bit more, compared to other techs.  Green will get the biggest boost, because I am switching it all over to +1/+3 bonuses for consistency, and reducing starting neutrals a bit.  I think I am going to set the green neutrals based upon the average bonus conferred by possession.   The formula I came up with is: 1.5 Neutral for each bonus unit in the capital.  1 Neutral for each bonus unit in the nation.  .5 neutral for each bonus unit in the super continent.  This is averaged over all civilizations (then rounded up), so the neutral counts are the same for everyone (except of course green will get a discount.  Probably -2 this time around).

    Assuming I did the math right, this comes out to default green neutrals of:

    2,5,7,19,14,41

    This is a bit cheaper for the green techs than before, so I think it will make them more worthwhile, and they track more closely to what they are actually worth.  Again, the 2nd, and 4th techs are optional and can be skipped over.

    Blue Tech also gets a little bump with 'Internet' at the end worth +5 in the flask for only 8 neutrals.

    Red Tech gets (I guess) a downgrade, because the dual function of the last red tech is going to be split up into Espionage/Assassination.  Not sure what the neutral counts on these will be, probably not that high - somewhere between 10 & 20.

     

    I'm hoping the average game will last a bit longer, since their are now 18 techs to play with.  Hopefully the better green/life techs will promote that.

     

    Any thoughts on flask placement?  I'd rather not move the flasks around, but if I were to do it, this is the time to do it.   So here's your chance to convince me.

     


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    Standard Member itsnotatumor
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    I don't have any in depth arguments, but the Asia Flasks seem the most exposed to me.  What about moving Asia's Siberia Flask to Honshu?

    Fortune favors the bold, and chance favors the prepared mind...

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    Premium Member Andernut
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    Green needs the biggest boost imo, so that's good.  Just a note on the UK.  Their 1st red tech is often next to useless for me due to limited area of impact, it lets you get your capital continent, but other players can wipe out a ton of units with theirs.


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    Standard Member itsnotatumor
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    Andernut wrote:

    Green needs the biggest boost imo, so that's good.  Just a note on the UK.  Their 1st red tech is often next to useless for me due to limited area of impact, it lets you get your capital continent, but other players can wipe out a ton of units with theirs.

    Yeah, I would rather have UK skip 1 & 3 than 2 & 4 if that's possible...

    Fortune favors the bold, and chance favors the prepared mind...

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    Premium Member Ozyman
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    > the Asia Flasks seem the most exposed to me.  What about moving Asia's Siberia Flask to Honshu?

    Yeah Green seems to get screwed on flask placement (along with everything else).  My thinking on Siberia was, to hopefully help green with defense. The idea is that you can defend against the west with just two territories at siberia & india.  Having the lab at siberia gives you the defensive bonus against war techs.   It probably doesn't usually help, so I'm fine with moving it.  The only thing is all the labs territories are physically big enough to hold a flask without spilling over the borders.  I feel like it would ruin the aesthetics to have a lab that is overflowing the edge of the territory, so I don't like Honshu for that reason.

    I could maybe move it to North India or even NW China, if I also moved over the unit count box, although it might look crowded.

    I'm not sure it is really necessary though.  Hopefully the changes to the tech tree will make green a more equal seat without needing to move the lab.  I was also thinking of giving China 5 more units in their capital to start, if it needs more boost.


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