So I admit it, I’ve been playing Civony for, uh, about 3 weeks. At the end of week 1 (when your newbler protection runs out) I had 52000-ish prestige. At this point I’m hovering around 36-40th place on the overall server prestige list, with maybe 64000 players listed. (Okay, a lot of those are inactives who made an account and found out there was no "qween.") I didn’t try really hard either, and since I’m getting fairly bored with the game anyway, I figure there’s no reason to not tell people how to properly exploit the game’s substantially broken economic model to their own advantage.
First of all, realize that Civony (besides being a scam run by Chinese gold farmers) is not really a strategic game, nor is it an RPG. It’s an economic city builder first and foremost. Anyone who has played games like Caesar III or Children of the Nile, or even Stronghold (which might be the closest analogy) should have no problem adapting the boom economy model to Civony. The basic concept is simple: get tons of whatever it is you need to do stuff, and keep other people from getting that stuff.
So here, in no particular order, are some incredibly painfully obvious Civony economic tips that for some reason most people don’t seem to get. Probably too busy looking for boobs.
Your basic foundation starts as soon as your kingdom is started. You’re under newbie protection, meaning you can not be attacked nor can you attack other players, for 1 week or until you foolishly upgrade your town hall to level 5. DO NOT DO THIS. One guy in my alliance went to town hall 5 on day 2, and well things didn’t go so well for him. Do whatever else you can do without going to town hall 5 until your protection expires, at which point you’ll probably want to go to town hall 5 fairly quickly to maximize your tax income. More on this later.
During newbie protection you don’t need that much of an army. You need to have enough to take valleys over to fulfill quests, and to defeat higher level valleys in a vain attempt to farm for medals. As your protection gets close to expiring, you do need to build up some forces in order to maybe deter attack from other players or to launch your own assaults, so the day before you go into full PvP mode start queuing up troops. Until this time, you still want to keep your troops functional but minimal, since they’re eating food. The newbie week is a good time to throw away lots of troops in valley assaults.
Note that lumber is extremely important throughout the game, but especially in the beginning as it’s a major component of just about every building you need. Later on food becomes important as well, but lumber is always in demand. Build resource harvesters appropriately.
BASIC TAXATION PLAN
Gold is the super-resource of the game, followed closely by lumber. In order to generate gold, you need to have a large population (whether they’re working or not) and you need to tax them. Luckily for you, in Civony that’s all your people do, work and pay taxes. There’s no downside to having a very large population, aside from the amount of city space you dedicate to cottages, and that’s not really a problem anyway.
I like to dedicate 14 spaces per town to cottages, and those cottages get upgraded pretty steadily. In general unless I need to upgrade a wall or something, there is no real incentive for me to upgrade my town hall until all or most of my cottages are at maximum value. At a minimum, you want your upper population limit to be a little more than half of your required labor force (assuming all industries set to 100%). The reason for this follows.
When you are away from the game, say travelling or doing something useful with your life, 50% is an optimal tax rate. Your population will be at half of your limit, and you’ll get 0.5 gold per person per hour. This is why you want at least twice your labor pool as a population limit, plus a few extra people so you can churn out some troops if you really need to. Note that your town loyalty will be at a base 50%, which may make you vulnerable to attack if you aren’t there to manage your loyalty. Don’t get attacked. More on this later.
When you do have access to the game over a long period of time, say when you’re home all day or working at a job that lets you connect to Civony, you can implement a 100% tax plan for a massive cash influx. To do this, you need food in quantity, but you can buy your food from the market and still be way ahead. It’s easy but requires some attention.
- At the beginning of the long stretch, get your population to maximum by increasing loyalty to 100%. You can do this by just setting your tax rate to 0% and walking away for about 5 hours, but this is silly. Speed up this process by using the comfort "Distaster Recovery" (costs food) every 15 minutes for a 5 point loyalty boost. Better yet, adjust your tax rate when you do this so that you don’t constantly lose money during this period. In 15 minutes you should lose 2-3 points of loyalty (the game ticks every 6 minutes) so to be safe, lower your tax rate by 10 points or so and use the comfort every 15 minutes. Do this to 100% loyalty and 0% taxes, should take you about 2 hours or less.
- When you get to 100% loyalty, bump taxes to 100%. This will cause your loyalty to start going down, but because the game doesn’t take into account drastic vs. small shifts in tax rate, so you will be extracting maximum gold while going down 5 points of loyalty every half hour. So, every half hour, use Disaster Recovery again. This will keep your loyalty between 95-100% for the entire period while your taxes stay at 100%.
- Near the end of the day, you can stop doing Disaster Recovery if you want and just let loyalty fall normally while still collecting maximum tax.
- VERY IMPORTANT. Before you go to sleep or otherwise end your active period in Civony, set your taxes back to 50%. If you leave them at 100% your loyalty will keep dropping to the point where your town starts rioting, losing resources, and eventually revolt and become a barbarian city.
This is the real key to pwning economically in Civony. Since all other commodities eventually balloon and therefore crash in value on the market, gold is enormously valuable. With enough, you can just buy whatever you’re short of and still be way ahead of your neighbors in research.
Will all of these resources and gold stockpiled in your city, you will be a very inviting target once your protection wears off. Make yourself less inviting. The main ways to do this include (1) building up your defenses, (2) constantly spending your resources, and (3) protecting the resources you do keep on hand. If your resources get spent, then attacking your city becomes a losing proposition for an enemy even if they can beat you.
Nice thing about this is that both of these goals are accomplished by buying wall defenses. If you really don’t know what to do with all of that lumber you have building up, buy towers, traps, abatis, rolling logs, etc. Spend excess stone on rockfalls if you must, although a lot of stone isn’t really all that inviting. If you have massive amounts of gold but still have a few days before your research is complete, spend some of it on the market to buy wood and stone. Turn that stuff right around into more towers.
Having a secure town is important not just because it lessens the probability that anyone will even try to raid you after scouting, but because you can now go out and attack your own neighbors with less of a chance of retaliation due to your crazy array of static defenses.
Also note that fortifications are more expensive than troops of equivalent combat value for very good reasons: they don’t keep consuming food while protecting you, and they work when your gates are closed.
To maximize the effectiveness of your towers, research archery as a primary goal. You have a significant advantage over an enemy archer swarm if you can outrange them and get in the first volley.
Walls 7 is an important milestone to hit just because it gives you Rockfall, the last of the static defenses. While Rockfall itself isn’t really that universally great like towers or even rolling logs, it’s a good defense to build because it uses stones instead of lumber, which goes into just about everything. Walls 7 also gives you sufficient fortification spaces to get a really intimidating-looking defense in place for scouts to find.
Warehouses are somewhat underappreciated in the game. A warehouse protects some of your resources from being pillaged in the even that your city is successfully attacked, which honestly can happen no matter how many defenses you have in place. While players see building warehouses as a sort of defeatist gesture (why build something that only helps if my ass gets kicked?), think of what it means to the player who is scouting you. You have a lot of resources, good defenses, but you also have 4 level 8 warehouses. Now his prize, if he succeeds in his attack, is even less because a fair chunk of your resources are not going to be available as plunder. If he’s smart, he’ll find someone else to attack.
Remember that this section is "Discouraging Attack," not "How To Successfully Defend Your City," although both titles are correct. Your best defense is to be such an uninviting target that nobody attacks you.
There you go. That’s basicaly all I do. When I get bored, I’ll launch a bunch of attacks on my neighbors, having built my army from my massive economic base, not crippled if my army gets killed, and basically safe from retaliation. The rest of Civony strategy is fairly minimal, and honestly somewhat laughable to anyone who’s played a really complicated diplomatic/production/alliance game. using these tips, I’m pretty sure you can go do fairly well for at least 3 weeks in Civony, until you get really bored and stop logging in to resubscribe to City of Heroes.