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Total War Heaven » Forums » Rome: Total War Discussion » Squalor Management Issues H/H
Topic Subject:Squalor Management Issues H/H
Smackus Maximus
posted 20 June 2008 08:34 EDT (US)         
First off, I know their has been some squalor related thread in the past, and I have glanced through a couple of them!

As someone who plays a lot of campaigns the one factor above all else I wish I could resolve is squalor - on the harder difficulty levels (I'm on H/H) I actually cannot complete a large empire. No matter how I try to manage settlements, they always ultimately get big and rebel, unless they are close to my capital. Even without farms, and using low taxes public order always sinks below 70% sooner or later.

Public health buildings only delay the problem, as they rise the population growth again.

It is a pity (and unrealistic) that you have to "plague" or exterminate your own cities on a regular basis to keep control of them....

Any way you can knock off squalor, or cap it's effect to a very low figure.
posted 20 June 2008 08:50 EDT (US)     1 / 6       
Sometimes adjusting the location of your capital does the trick. What I usually do is keep taxes as high as I can to drive down population growth while building law and happiness improvements. I also build the public health buildings to max.

Peasants used as garrison troops are also the most effective because of their unit size. I'm sure you already know that, but they help keep order. Certain cities are also much more rebellious than others. I find it much less of a headache to just let them be rebel cities. Then, if you're strapped for cash sometime, you can take one of these rebel cities and massacre for a quick profit.
posted 20 June 2008 09:06 EDT (US)     2 / 6       
well if you have a big epmire then you can probably afford to just spam peasants. Thats what I did in Spain, which I found to be particularly anarchistic.
Seraph Emeritus
posted 20 June 2008 09:07 EDT (US)     3 / 6       
The only way to completely prevent squalor from bothering you is to finish the campaign before it becomes a problem. I play my campaigns very aggressively and I rarely have PO problems due to squalor.

Smackus Maximus
posted 20 June 2008 09:54 EDT (US)     4 / 6       
Was hoping to complete an entire map conquest - can you delete squalor from the game files perhaps?
posted 20 June 2008 10:40 EDT (US)     5 / 6       
I find that the secret to keeping squalor down is actually counter-intuitive:

a slow campaign and very high taxes!!

Although the blitz can make this not an issue, it's more of a cover than a solution. Most squalor is caused by allowing populations to grow too big too fast.

Cities conquered by a large army will seldom revolt, and it only takes a few turns of that occupation to put them well into the green, but if you skip those 4-5 turns, woe be to you, mon frère!!

I have never seen a city with a governor and five or more cards of soldiers revolt, except in Greece, where cities are so huge that proper management is difficult. When faced with such revolt, crucifying the population is a startlingly effective method, but most of us like to play the good guys so i keep it as a last resort.

building is a good way to reduce initial unrest. early in the game, building roads, ports, and traders at every new town is cheap, fast, and effective.

One last thing - blue or yellow faces are nothing to be worried about. Sometimes you can't please everyone, especially factions starting with a weak and far-flug empire (Numidia, Scythia). Even the occasional riot is nothing in the long term, so long as it is soon corrected.

I play exclusively on vh/vh and have never tried the other difficulties, so while this advice holds true for those campaigns i do not know what differences may be in the others.

[This message has been edited by SrJamesTyrrel (edited 06-20-2008 @ 10:43 AM).]

posted 20 June 2008 18:48 EDT (US)     6 / 6       
The thing to remember is that squalor is caused by population growth, and the larger the population, the larger the squalor. There really is no eliminating it. Even buildings like sewers that give that give you a public health bonus do not really stop it. Their health bonus gives some temporary relief from squalor, but it also causes the population to grow more. Causing... you guessed it, more squalor.

What public health buildings really do is allow you to get your cities to larger sizes. The reason is that squalor reduces population growth. The more squalor in a city, the less it grows. They eventually get to a point (usually around 15k or so population, but it varies by the base farming level of the region and whether it has the grain resource) where they just will not grow any more. The public health bonus from sewers will push that point of no-gain higher up is all.

Very High taxes and no sewage at all will keep your cities (relatively) small. Because both will curb population growth. This is exactly how I played it in my Defensive Scythia campaign, and squalor was not really an issue throughout the entire 284 years of the campaign. My cities got up to that 12-15k mark and just stopped growing. Every once and a while they would get the plague and it would knock out about 5k people, and the population would grow back up to that cut-off point. Their garrisons were about 6-10 Peasants, and keeping order was never a problem. There is a save from the campaign in the Downloads section. Download it and take a look.

[This message has been edited by SubRosa (edited 06-20-2008 @ 07:20 PM).]

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