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Thread: How do I build strong diplomats?

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    Member Member OBarbas's Avatar
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    Question How do I build strong diplomats?

    Hello all. Hours, days, months of pleasure from EB, this fantastic mod.

    I've searched the forum though and have been unable to come up with a focussed thread dedicated to answering my question -

    How do I build a strong diplomat?

    I've never managed to engage in the lengthy negotiations that the manual suggests is possible in any of the Total War games.

    Please can someone advise, or provide a link to a thread I've missed.

    thanks!

    OBarbas

  2. #2

    Default Re: How do I build strong diplomats?

    When you first recruit them, let them sit in a city with an Academy or better. They'll get the "Trained" attribute in a year or two, and stand a good chance of acquiring retinue such as translators. You can also send them off to a battle zone, where they can pick up the Foreign Hostage retinue.

    Then negotiate lots of ceasefires, trade rights, and/or alliances (giving gifts doesn't seem to help, sadly). Presumably you could even provoke wars with a minor foreign power (blockading a far-off port, maybe?), just to then negotiate ceasefires and boost your diplomat, but this might bring down your global "trustworthiness" level.

    Finally, just let them get old and learned: they'll gain even more influence as they age, although they'll also get slower and more prone to assassination.

    Note that your initial diplomats are often hard to match in the later game, precisely because they're the ones negotiating a lot of ceasefires, trade rights, and alliances. You'll also see this with AI diplomats, where their initial diplomats become almost impossible assassination targets, just because they've negotiated so much and have such high influence. Later on there's just less opportunity for negotiation because all the deals have already been done, so it's harder to build up great diplomats. Still, if you start out lucky (with e.g. a diplomatic genius), get trained, and throw in a couple of retinue, you can be at +7 or +8 influence before he's even gotten old or negotiated his first trade deal.

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    Member Member OBarbas's Avatar
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    Thumbs up Re: How do I build strong diplomats?

    Thank you FriendlyFire! With that knowledge, I proceed to diplomatic triumphs! Currently starting a Very Hard on all settings Seleucid campaign, I think I'm going to need plenty of diplomacy to maintain my far-flung borders!

    Cheers, mate!

  4. #4
    Unbowed Unbent Unbroken Member Lazy O's Avatar
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    Default Re: How do I build strong diplomats?

    There is no such thing as diplomacy on VH campaign, play medium. No matter how good the diplomat, AI wont accept


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    Arrogant Ashigaru Moderator Ludens's Avatar
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    Default Re: How do I build strong diplomats?

    Quote Originally Posted by Lazy O View Post
    There is no such thing as diplomacy on VH campaign, play medium. No matter how good the diplomat, AI wont accept
    Actually, you can get the A.I. to accept at VH, but a badly though-out mechanisms means that the A.I. will become annoyed with the player for no reason other than that no positive interaction takes place. You can counteract this effect by paying them a small, regular tribute (say 100 mnai per turn). The A.I. also seems disinclined to attack someone who is paying them money, no matter how little. Still, the A.I. is programmed to gang up on the player, so even this won't prevent the A.I. from being unreasonably and unwisely hostile towards the player. But that happens at any difficulty level.
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    Default Re: How do I build strong diplomats?

    AI diplomacy is very weird.

    In my Rome game it's the second century BC and the Romans rule the western Mediterranean, the Ptolemies the eastern. The Ptolemies keep attacking me in Rhodos and then offering a cease-fire a turn later. I can demand Antiocheia in return and get it for free, and I even demanded their entire western seaboard (Antiochea, Tarsos, Damascos, Hierosolyma, Alexandria, Sidon, Bostra, Edessa) and I got it in return for a few 100.000 minai. I then reloaded because it didn't make any sense to me for them to sell their empire after a war that had seen 1 skirmish fought. And all this is on hard campaign difficulty.

  7. #7

    Default Re: How do I build strong diplomats?

    Bribing boosts up their influence too. And is sometimes even usefull: preventing a strong AI faction from taking a key rebel region, while allowing a smaller one to use their foreces, or even lifting a siege; bribing a small rebel army with units your faction can utilize, or even better, cannot recruit yet due to the lack of adequate army barracks tier. Of course, bribing armies is really expensive ( try the ones led by captains only ), and the mercs are cheaper, but that way you are weakening your enemies on the front, while getting some useful units for your own. Also, once you start swimming in money, you can keep your treasury at bay that way.
    Bribing is quite expensive, though. The cheapest way to get a good diplomat instantly is to bribe one of the enemies negotiators. Bribing also affects some traits of your Faction Leader, giving him politician skills. Though, i think to have noticed that sometimes an FM residing in your capital would get the traits instead ( i have to test it out yet, though ).
    Moving your agents around a lot, while using their full movement points, will give them a "hardy" trait, which boosts up their movement point and their personal security, counteracting the "elder statesman" traits when they are getting older.
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  8. #8

    Default Re: How do I build strong diplomats?

    When bribing it also helps to use spies to find corrupt generals. If they are corrupt enough they can be cheaper to bribe than captains, I think. This has the side benefit of training your spies along with your diplomats.

    Also fun: Bribing super-rebel stacks in the Alps and getting a bunch of gold-chevron units. Okay, so you need a million minai for this, but still. Easier than fighting them.

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    Member Member anubis88's Avatar
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    Default Re: How do I build strong diplomats?

    I had no idea Androids were around in the EB time-frame (the diplomats being built )... Oh, well... You learn something new every day :)

    But the bottom line is this; diplomacy sucks in RTW - and it sucks big time... You can't really do much unless you use Force Diplomacy, no matter how well trained your diplomats are
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    Member Member Havok.'s Avatar
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    Default Re: How do I build strong diplomats?

    Quote Originally Posted by anubis88 View Post
    But the bottom line is this; diplomacy sucks in RTW - and it sucks big time... You can't really do much unless you use Force Diplomacy, no matter how well trained your diplomats are
    I belive Force Diplomacy is utterly useless as well when seeking ceasefires or alliances, since the AI will do what they intended ( waging a war against you specially ) no matter if you momentarly forced them to accept a ceasefire, its like prolonging the final action, it might take the AI sometime till you get tired of forcing them to ceasefire everyturn, but eventually they will.

    Force diplomacy might prove useful for RP purposes like buying a city, bribing, map information or anything else, but when it comes with ceasefires.....well i made my point already.


    Also, my statement has as a base my own personal experience, if anyone here experienced a different behaviour from the AI please tell, i'd be interested in hearing.

    THanks
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    EBII Hod Carrier Member QuintusSertorius's Avatar
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    Default Re: How do I build strong diplomats?

    Quote Originally Posted by Havok. View Post
    I belive Force Diplomacy is utterly useless as well when seeking ceasefires or alliances, since the AI will do what they intended ( waging a war against you specially ) no matter if you momentarly forced them to accept a ceasefire, its like prolonging the final action, it might take the AI sometime till you get tired of forcing them to ceasefire everyturn, but eventually they will.

    Force diplomacy might prove useful for RP purposes like buying a city, bribing, map information or anything else, but when it comes with ceasefires.....well i made my point already.


    Also, my statement has as a base my own personal experience, if anyone here experienced a different behaviour from the AI please tell, i'd be interested in hearing.

    THanks
    It may be useless from the point of view of preventing attacks, but it does at least give you some breathing room with trading time in between. If you've changed the dynamics of your relationship (decimated their nearby armies, perhaps no longer share a land border, etc), then the peace will stick. Force Diplomacy works, I've had lengthy peace-sessions resulting from it (though on Medium campaign difficulty).

    Furthermore, after getting an FD'd ceasefire, saving and re-loading the game will reset the AI, which may end the aggression for a time.
    Last edited by QuintusSertorius; 11-28-2010 at 12:59.
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    Member Member Havok.'s Avatar
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    Default Re: How do I build strong diplomats?

    Quote Originally Posted by QuintusSertorius View Post
    Furthermore, after getting an FD'd ceasefire, saving and re-loading the game will reset the AI, which may end the aggression for a time.
    Didn't know that, thats quite an info you got there, thanks for sharing it bud.
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    EBII Hod Carrier Member QuintusSertorius's Avatar
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    Default Re: How do I build strong diplomats?

    Quote Originally Posted by Havok. View Post
    Didn't know that, thats quite an info you got there, thanks for sharing it bud.
    I can't take the credit for the discovery, though I can't remember who first told me. I guess its linked to the notion that the best way to get a challenge out of the AI is to have long sessions (lasting several hours between loading games).
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    Arrogant Ashigaru Moderator Ludens's Avatar
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    Default Re: How do I build strong diplomats?

    Quote Originally Posted by QuintusSertorius View Post
    Furthermore, after getting an FD'd ceasefire, saving and re-loading the game will reset the AI, which may end the aggression for a time.
    This was true in the early versions of R:TW (the A.I. would lift sieges after a reload, so this was called the siege-bug or save-reload bug), but it was fixed in the 1.2 or 1.3 patch. Are you saying it was only partially fixed?
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    EBII Hod Carrier Member QuintusSertorius's Avatar
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    Default Re: How do I build strong diplomats?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ludens View Post
    This was true in the early versions of R:TW (the A.I. would lift sieges after a reload, so this was called the siege-bug or save-reload bug), but it was fixed in the 1.2 or 1.3 patch. Are you saying it was only partially fixed?
    From my observations, it's only partially fixed. While they won't break off a siege after a save-reload, you can cause a stack you've moved to initiate a siege rather than try to return to whatever it was they were doing. Without a save-reload, most of the time they wander off.
    It began on seven hills - an EB 1.1 Romani AAR with historical house-rules (now ceased)
    Heirs to Lysimachos - an EB 1.1 Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR with semi-historical houserules (now ceased)
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    Arrogant Ashigaru Moderator Ludens's Avatar
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    Default Re: How do I build strong diplomats?

    I am sorry, but I don't understand. You are saying that we now have an inverted siege-bug, in that armies that were moving now start a siege when you reload?
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    EBII Hod Carrier Member QuintusSertorius's Avatar
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    Default Re: How do I build strong diplomats?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ludens View Post
    I am sorry, but I don't understand. You are saying that we now have an inverted siege-bug, in that armies that were moving now start a siege when you reload?
    Basically, yes. With reload they will no longer break off a siege. But you can fairly reliably (assuming their forces are capable of matching off with the defenders) get them to besiege a settlement on reload if you've moved a stack next to it. It has to be one bordering their existing provinces and they'd want. It's not foolproof or 100% reliable, but will often work. I've used it time and again when I'm trying to shape the AI's movement (and stop everyone haring off north).

    Getting Baktria to actually do something and grab up the rebel lands to their south and west requires this.
    It began on seven hills - an EB 1.1 Romani AAR with historical house-rules (now ceased)
    Heirs to Lysimachos - an EB 1.1 Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR with semi-historical houserules (now ceased)
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    EBII Hod Carrier Member QuintusSertorius's Avatar
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    Default Re: How do I build strong diplomats?

    Ha, I just got an audacious proposal without even using Force Diplomacy. Ipsos had gone rebel (courtesy of my spies and assassins) and after a long war I was at peace with the Seleukids. They sent a scratch force to recover Phrygia, and I attacked them so I could take the settlement myself. Next turn they send a diplomat asking for a ceasefire. Not being particularly interested, I ask for Mazaka in return for a ceasefire (so I can make Kappodokia a client kingdom). They say yes (!) so I now have it. Though they have now sent a near-full-stack to recover it.
    It began on seven hills - an EB 1.1 Romani AAR with historical house-rules (now ceased)
    Heirs to Lysimachos - an EB 1.1 Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR with semi-historical houserules (now ceased)
    Philetairos' Gift - a second EB 1.1 Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR


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    Arrogant Ashigaru Moderator Ludens's Avatar
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    Lightbulb Re: How do I build strong diplomats?

    Quote Originally Posted by QuintusSertorius View Post
    Basically, yes. With reload they will no longer break off a siege. But you can fairly reliably (assuming their forces are capable of matching off with the defenders) get them to besiege a settlement on reload if you've moved a stack next to it. It has to be one bordering their existing provinces and they'd want. It's not foolproof or 100% reliable, but will often work.
    I guess they couldn't solve the problem of A.I. priorities being lost, so they simply added a rule to encourage besieging after a reload.
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    RABO! Member Brave Brave Sir Robin's Avatar
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    Default Re: How do I build strong diplomats?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ludens View Post
    I guess they couldn't solve the problem of A.I. priorities being lost, so they simply added a rule to encourage besieging after a reload.
    Not really sure if this is what Quintus is saying. I think what he means is that if you move an AI stack outside of a town you want it to take, save and then reload, the AI will reset, realize its right near a town that it would like to take, and besiege it.

    On the other hand, if you just move that stack without resetting the AI, it might wander off to do what it originally was intending to do.
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    EBII Hod Carrier Member QuintusSertorius's Avatar
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    Default Re: How do I build strong diplomats?

    Quote Originally Posted by Brave Brave Sir Robin View Post
    Not really sure if this is what Quintus is saying. I think what he means is that if you move an AI stack outside of a town you want it to take, save and then reload, the AI will reset, realize its right near a town that it would like to take, and besiege it.

    On the other hand, if you just move that stack without resetting the AI, it might wander off to do what it originally was intending to do.
    Precisely. If you reload, it will besiege the town 75% of the time. If you don't, it's more like 10% of the time.
    It began on seven hills - an EB 1.1 Romani AAR with historical house-rules (now ceased)
    Heirs to Lysimachos - an EB 1.1 Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR with semi-historical houserules (now ceased)
    Philetairos' Gift - a second EB 1.1 Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR


  22. #22

    Default Re: How do I build strong diplomats?

    Quote Originally Posted by QuintusSertorius View Post
    Ha, I just got an audacious proposal without even using Force Diplomacy. Ipsos had gone rebel (courtesy of my spies and assassins) and after a long war I was at peace with the Seleukids. They sent a scratch force to recover Phrygia, and I attacked them so I could take the settlement myself. Next turn they send a diplomat asking for a ceasefire. Not being particularly interested, I ask for Mazaka in return for a ceasefire (so I can make Kappodokia a client kingdom). They say yes (!) so I now have it. Though they have now sent a near-full-stack to recover it.
    The AS often seems to be a diplomatic pushover in the early game. If they started the war, then they generally accept a ceasefire after a serious reversal, and can often be talked into giving up settlements or cash. As the Hai, I've received Karkathiokerta from them in exchange for a ceasefire, even though they had a large garrison in there that my horse archers didn't stand a chance against.

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    EBII Hod Carrier Member QuintusSertorius's Avatar
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    Default Re: How do I build strong diplomats?

    Quote Originally Posted by FriendlyFire View Post
    The AS often seems to be a diplomatic pushover in the early game. If they started the war, then they generally accept a ceasefire after a serious reversal, and can often be talked into giving up settlements or cash. As the Hai, I've received Karkathiokerta from them in exchange for a ceasefire, even though they had a large garrison in there that my horse archers didn't stand a chance against.
    This isn't all that early - it was around 227BC after I'd kicked seven bells out of every army they sent my way.
    It began on seven hills - an EB 1.1 Romani AAR with historical house-rules (now ceased)
    Heirs to Lysimachos - an EB 1.1 Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR with semi-historical houserules (now ceased)
    Philetairos' Gift - a second EB 1.1 Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR


  24. #24
    Arrogant Ashigaru Moderator Ludens's Avatar
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    Default Re: How do I build strong diplomats?

    Quote Originally Posted by Brave Brave Sir Robin View Post
    Not really sure if this is what Quintus is saying. I think what he means is that if you move an AI stack outside of a town you want it to take, save and then reload, the AI will reset, realize its right near a town that it would like to take, and besiege it.

    On the other hand, if you just move that stack without resetting the AI, it might wander off to do what it originally was intending to do.
    Ah, I see. I thought you meant placing one of your own stacks next to the town, rather than the AI's.
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    EBII Hod Carrier Member QuintusSertorius's Avatar
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    Default Re: How do I build strong diplomats?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ludens View Post
    Ah, I see. I thought you meant placing one of your own stacks next to the town, rather than the AI's.
    No, I meant getting the AI to besiege other AI towns. Which is useful if you're trying to channel the AI into going a particular direction (like making the AI Romans head east and south, not north and west).
    It began on seven hills - an EB 1.1 Romani AAR with historical house-rules (now ceased)
    Heirs to Lysimachos - an EB 1.1 Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR with semi-historical houserules (now ceased)
    Philetairos' Gift - a second EB 1.1 Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR


  26. #26
    Arrogant Ashigaru Moderator Ludens's Avatar
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    Default Re: How do I build strong diplomats?

    Quote Originally Posted by QuintusSertorius View Post
    No, I meant getting the AI to besiege other AI towns. Which is useful if you're trying to channel the AI into going a particular direction (like making the AI Romans head east and south, not north and west).
    Yes, I got that. I thought you were moving your own stacks, rather than A.I. stacks, to induce them to attack certain towns.
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    EBII Hod Carrier Member QuintusSertorius's Avatar
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    Default Re: How do I build strong diplomats?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ludens View Post
    Yes, I got that. I thought you were moving your own stacks, rather than A.I. stacks, to induce them to attack certain towns.
    Oh no, this is using the move_character command to put AI armies next to towns I want them to take.
    It began on seven hills - an EB 1.1 Romani AAR with historical house-rules (now ceased)
    Heirs to Lysimachos - an EB 1.1 Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR with semi-historical houserules (now ceased)
    Philetairos' Gift - a second EB 1.1 Epeiros-as-Pergamon AAR


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