I was wondering lately how good exactly is main feature of Ottoman Empire which is spawning villagers for free (but very slowly - 48s). I decided to create an Excel sheet and visualize precisely how they perform depending on a few variables. So, here is the analysis:
1 TOWN CENTER, NO MARKET UPGRADES, NO MOSQUE UPGRADES
First one is quite simple. Just to see how many free resources will Ottomans have compared to a “generic civ” which is any civ able to create a villager for 100 food in 25s and to French. For simplicity we are assuming that all villagers are constanly gathering food from hunted animals without being idle.
Starting resources, shipments and idle TC during age-up are not included into simulation.
Also, we are assuming no Market upgrades are researched for any of the civs.
It can be clearly see that Ottomans have slight advantage to about 8 min mark. Because of that, they have strong rush and quick FF timing. After that time their oponent will have much bigger villager mass and his income will be bigger than Ottomans even if we subtract villager cost.
In my opinion this is also the reason why Ottomans will pretty much always lose a game when their FF attack is not succeed. They simply have weaker eco and can’t remass.
After that point of time, every minute will make their situation worse. So this brings us to second analysis. What will happen if Ottomans go for FF and boom with 4 Town Centers, all Mosque upgrades and Market upgrades?
4 TOWN CENTERS, HUNTING DOGS + STEEL TRAPS, ALL MOSQUE UPGRADES AFTER 9 MIN
This one represents the most greedy boom Ottomans can perform in Age III. So, before 9 minute game runs normally (1 TC, no Mosque, no Market upgrades for any civ). Since 9 minute all civs will create 4 villagers constantly until they reach their settler limit. For Ottomans 1 villager is now created in 48-5-5-8=30s. For others, still 25s per villager. All civs have reaserched Hunting Dogs + Steel Traps which gives 30% boost to base food gather rate. Of course French and “generic civ” will still need to pay 100f for every villager.
Before 20min mark they all will reach villager limit. Here are the results:
Results are a little bit suprising. Ottomans even in their most greedy strategy with free villagers from 4 TC spawned every 30s will still not be able to match even “generic civ”. They are quite close to lets say 13-14min, but later on they will have significantly less free resources for upgrades and military. The only point when they really benefites from their free villagers is still before 8-9 minute.
There are also a few more things to consider here. Most of European civs have access to Bishop Politician who gives free TC wagon which makes their boom much easier to start (Ottomans does not have this possibility, which makes their 4 TC boom harder to start rollin).
Also, I didn’t include Mosque upgrades cost into this simulation. It is 475 wood total, so pretty much a value of another TC. Not including this into simulation will favor Ottomans but they are still lowest tier in the chart.
Moreover “generic civ” represents the worse civ with no additional unique features. Real civs have unique capabilities and that abilities will make their respective booms much stronger (Banks, Torps, Shrines, Wonders…). And free villagers is the main Ottoman advantage over other civs. And it is not even enough to outboom a civ who just constantly create vills…
This is also a reason why removing Town Center wagon for Ottomans is simply a bad decision in my opinion. Why to nerf a boom for a civ which is the worst civ in a game in terms of booming?
There are some good players here who claims that Otto 4 TC boom is too strong, Well, I believe that if you can’t win a game against Otto 4 TC boom, it means you choose a wrong strategy or your opponent was a better player.
As a last word I will paste here a tournament game between Otto and China (Rohbrot vs Minimoult) where Otto player destroyed half of China’s town (including TC) and killed about 15-20 villagers and finally still lost this game which is crazy (game starts at 2:29:30):
PS The important thing I missed in 4 TC scenario is the fact that Otto does not need map control to make a 4 TC boom because their villagers are free. Other civs need all the hunts to create vills constantly from 4 TC. We need to keep that in mind.