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I always find Col, and indeed any Civ game, very long to play. Unless I have a quiet period when I can play a couple of hours a day for sometime, I do not even start to play.
What I would like is a short game. Say 100-150 moves. Maybe you only have about 6-10 cities.
This should just be an issue of adjusting parameters. Not really a FreeCol2 issue.
I just finished my first Freecol full game. Excellent.
But much too long, it took me 10 weeks playing most days.
How can we get a shorter game?
Just build fewer cities. It used to work to just build one, make money by trading with the natives with goods from Europe. I haven't tried it with the current version, it probably wouldn't work as well now. 10 should be no problem, though.
One idea that's been discussed is to build temporary colonies as "mining camps" to exploit resources, then abandon them before you declare independence. Move everybody into a few fortified cities with lots of extra muskets on hand. (Edit: That should be "to", not "into"- make them into troops, don't move them into town)
If you want, you can go into the game options ans create a small map that has room for no more than a small number of colonies.
This is very much my thinking. I plan 2 large cities and about 4 or 5 feeder villages. The abandoning idea is good.
Now, which European power should I choose? I'm leaning towards French, and mostly trading with the Indians.
I think the French would be an excellent choice.
Mote ideas for short game.
As posted in my report on my second game, posted elsewhere in the Freecol forum, I achieved 50% rebels in 1641, declared in 1643 and won in 1647.
I understand from the developers that the main target for release 1 is to match the 1994 Col and as such a 'Short Game' option is not foreseen.
For me, this short game (taking 3 weeks, being longer than expected, and with an easy ending due to a weak REF) was much more enjoyable than my first game, which took me 10 weeks to complete. After 7 weeks of playing that earlier game, it had become a chore. I just felt I had to finish the game, but I had stopped enjoying it.
The main problem for an enjoyable short game (ideally with independence soon after 1600) is lack of bells, and rebels.
I did not change the 'difficulty' settings in the game start up.
I can see that these changes would help:
- adding Statesman on dock
- for the number of Colonists in city that use no bells, change the value to 6
both will boost bell production.
Any other ideas in changing values in the custom settings?
Can we have other setup options in preferences or difficulty to make the 'short game' better?
- faster bell production
- start off with a bonus in bells
- start off with a bonus in rebels (not 0%)
- reduce rebels needed to declare independence to a lower value than 50%
If you keep the number of colonies really small, you have to put up with some units just standing around. They don't cost you anything if you don't move them into a job in the colony, eventually you should be able to arm them if nothing else.
Other than that, all I can tell you is build Printing Presses/Newspapers as early as possible, and put as many units in the Town Hall as you can early on. The early production you lose this way will be more than made up later.
You really did very well for your first attempt at a fast game.