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Great Britain Interjection
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07 Nov 2018, 20:22

If you intend to train a few sheep to eek out a bit of extra boom, the answer is f**king don't bother.

Livestock are bad.png
Livestock are bad.png (24.22 KiB) Viewed 621 times


As you can see, after 6 minutes, your 100f investment nets a STAGGERING 4.5 food profit (in real terms).

What I mean by real terms


HOWEVER, if you research Selective Breeding for 300 resources, you get that 4.5 food back a WHOLE 54 SECONDS MORE QUICKLY. So after a mere 67 sheep trained, this upgrade pays for itself in no time!
______________________________________________________________________________

However, let's be real. No one builds the pen to train livestock. The more interesting question is, how many animals do I need to bring back to my base before it's worth making a pen? I'm not sure what the answer is but I have done some maths to help find out!

Here's how 'profitable' a livestock pen will be with varying numbers of animals found:

When to build a pen.png
When to build a pen.png (13.47 KiB) Viewed 621 times


These numbers take into account the fact that livestock slowly fatten without a pen. (This is another 'opportunity cost')

So if a livestock pen costs 200w (400vs), to break even, you need to find:
-5 sheep/goats
-4 llams
-3 cows/yak

But breaking even isn't good enough because this is a 200w investment over approx 6 minutes. The question is then, how much profit makes this worthwhile? 200w could be a trading post which generates aprox 1.2xp/s http://www.rts-sanctuary.com/Age-Of-Empires-3/showtopic=109488. So you can sort of compare it too 432 xp. More if you get stagecoach I suppose. 200w (400vs) + 432 xp. Does that mean you need about ~850f to profit from the livestock? It's hard to know because food & xp aren't all that comparable.

But it does seem like you'd need:
-10 sheep/goats
-8 llama
6 cows/yaks

That doesn't sound right though? People have been building pens on fewer animals than that?

I suppose there is also the fact to consider that making a pen is a way to generate a food source in a game where the first player to run out of natural resources usually loses. So perhaps there is some intangible benefit there to consider. Eitherway, I think some more opinions on this would be good.
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Great Britain Interjection
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07 Nov 2018, 20:24

As an aside, given that selective breeding is so bad, perhaps it could also buff the gather rate of livestock animals by 25%

This actually has a significant effect on the food profit!

Alternatively, you could also reduce the cost of livestock.

Selective Breeding Buff.png
Selective Breeding Buff.png (31.92 KiB) Viewed 620 times
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Turkey HUMMAN
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07 Nov 2018, 21:06

btw it is even worse than that because tp generates xp continiously while you get food only at the end.
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Norway iwillspankyou
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07 Nov 2018, 21:08

Cowing means you need far less villies to gather food, and your villies are not subject to constant raiding. Guess this fact will also have to be taking in to consideration - specially if its a prolonged game, and you reinvest in your Pen(s)??

Nice statistics btw ;)
Hippocrits are the worst of animals. I love elifants.
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Australia VooDoo_BoSs
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08 Nov 2018, 00:21

Interjection wrote:If you intend to train a few sheep to eek out a bit of extra boom, the answer is f**king never.

Livestock are bad.png


As you can see, after 6 minutes, your 100f investment nets a STAGGERING 4.5 food profit (in real terms).

What I mean by real terms


HOWEVER, if you research Selective Breeding for 300 resources, you get that 4.5 food back a WHOLE 54 SECONDS MORE QUICKLY. So after a mere 67 sheep trained, this upgrade pays for itself in no time!
______________________________________________________________________________

However, let's be real. No one builds the pen to train livestock. The more interesting question is, how many animals do I need to bring back to my base before it's worth making a pen? I'm not sure what the answer is but I have done some maths to help find out!

Here's how 'profitable' a livestock pen will be with varying numbers of animals found:

When to build a pen.png


These numbers take into account the fact that livestock slowly fatten without a pen. (This is another 'opportunity cost')

So if a livestock pen costs 200w (400vs), to break even, you need to find:
-5 sheep/goats
-4 llams
-3 cows/yak

But breaking even isn't good enough because this is a 200w investment over approx 6 minutes. The question is then, how much profit makes this worthwhile? 200w could be a trading post which generates aprox 1.2xp/s http://www.rts-sanctuary.com/Age-Of-Empires-3/showtopic=109488. So you can sort of compare it too 432 xp. More if you get stagecoach I suppose. 200w (400vs) + 432 xp. Does that mean you need about ~850f to profit from the livestock? It's hard to know because food & xp aren't all that comparable.

But it does seem like you'd need:
-10 sheep/goats
-8 llama
6 cows/yaks

That doesn't sound right though? People have been building pens on fewer animals than that?

I suppose there is also the fact to consider that making a pen is a way to generate a food source in a game where the first player to run out of natural resources usually loses. So perhaps there is some intangible benefit there to consider. Eitherway, I think some more opinions on this would be good.


Great analysis and use of opportunity cost of livestock pen vs TP.
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Italy Garja
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08 Nov 2018, 01:35

To be fair with livestock you have almost no walking time once the thing starts rolling. Hunts require villagers to go out on the map.
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Canada dansil92
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08 Nov 2018, 01:39

Keep in mind livestock is much safer than hunts, does not require hunting dogs and steel traps (arguably almost 200 wood right there, plus coin as well) to gather at full speed. Eg. If you lose 1 villager in a raid on your hunts that would not have died if it was safely gathering livestock thats 100 food+ resources gathered in the time it takes to train another one (close to another 100 resources). They also can be replenished whereas hunts cannot, they dont need to be herded making for less micro even compared to microing a pen, and requires less villagers to gather meaning more gathering coin or food (another intangible benefit of livestock). Other useless factors can be considered like using cows to block military units in your base and being able to move them to another location (once fattened) if necessary as opposed to mills which are static. I would argue it is only the TIME that is invested that is problematic. But sending ranching (age 1 card, doesn't fill up a valuable age 3 slot) as opposed to refrigeration is arguably a much better card in terms of raw food per second gatherable and selective breeding is a much cheaper upgrade than both of the mill ones. It would require investing sooner than mills to transition smoothly and would be much better suited to maps where there is free livestock is available so you can turn that livestock into more cows. The math is solid, its applying it that is much more difficult.

On another note, china is much more able to take advantage of livestock they have the cards and villages are "free", and Iroquois with travois to help and they definitely have the cards for it. Sioux technically would benefit from cowing as opposed to farming but shouldnt ever get that far without just losing and aztec should always farm (they can go over 2 food per second if all eco cards are used eg. Faster than livestock).

From personal experience (master sergeant level here not top level) i have had modest success with dutch using livestock to some extent. It helps stretch the very limited villager count beyond its usual limits and (if necessary) being able to buy the 200 wood or a couple hundred food to train cows helps immensely too. 200 wood for a livestock pen hurts a lot less than 400 for a mill and 2 food a second is much better than mills meaninh i have more villie seconds available to focus on other resources that become very important late game when trying to afford to industrial upgrades, etc.
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Kiribati SirCallen
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08 Nov 2018, 03:10

I think I've built a pen for 3 sheep before
and the giving famishes the craving
sweet thames, run softly, til I end my song

The shepherd's staff's tantalus around my neck

let the water
touch the tongue
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Sweden Gendarme
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08 Nov 2018, 06:29

Guys, you have to take into consideration the fact that gathering food from livestock doesn't require your villagers to walk outside of your base.
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France P i k i l i c
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08 Nov 2018, 07:39

Livestock also always stay in the heart of your base near the pen, this allows your villagers not to lose VS looking for herds away from safety
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No Flag greatscythe11
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Posts: 68
ESO: greatscythe11

08 Nov 2018, 08:32

What if the player gets like 7 or more yak, invests 200 wood into a trading post, doesn't build a pen, saves the yaks and when he starts his last hunt, builds a pen, does selective breeding and sends ranching? The food boost comes a bit earlier and part of it can be reinvested into pen again. If there's an imminent hold, he can postpone the pen and the card till the hold finishes. It looks more flexible then investing right away in early game into a pen.

P.S: I think yaks have a better fattening rate then cows do. Someone might confirm that.
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Poland pecelot
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08 Nov 2018, 09:06

VooDoo_BoSs wrote:
Interjection wrote:If you intend to train a few sheep to eek out a bit of extra boom, the answer is f**king never.

Livestock are bad.png


As you can see, after 6 minutes, your 100f investment nets a STAGGERING 4.5 food profit (in real terms).

What I mean by real terms


HOWEVER, if you research Selective Breeding for 300 resources, you get that 4.5 food back a WHOLE 54 SECONDS MORE QUICKLY. So after a mere 67 sheep trained, this upgrade pays for itself in no time!
______________________________________________________________________________

However, let's be real. No one builds the pen to train livestock. The more interesting question is, how many animals do I need to bring back to my base before it's worth making a pen? I'm not sure what the answer is but I have done some maths to help find out!

Here's how 'profitable' a livestock pen will be with varying numbers of animals found:

When to build a pen.png


These numbers take into account the fact that livestock slowly fatten without a pen. (This is another 'opportunity cost')

So if a livestock pen costs 200w (400vs), to break even, you need to find:
-5 sheep/goats
-4 llams
-3 cows/yak

But breaking even isn't good enough because this is a 200w investment over approx 6 minutes. The question is then, how much profit makes this worthwhile? 200w could be a trading post which generates aprox 1.2xp/s http://www.rts-sanctuary.com/Age-Of-Empires-3/showtopic=109488. So you can sort of compare it too 432 xp. More if you get stagecoach I suppose. 200w (400vs) + 432 xp. Does that mean you need about ~850f to profit from the livestock? It's hard to know because food & xp aren't all that comparable.

But it does seem like you'd need:
-10 sheep/goats
-8 llama
6 cows/yaks

That doesn't sound right though? People have been building pens on fewer animals than that?

I suppose there is also the fact to consider that making a pen is a way to generate a food source in a game where the first player to run out of natural resources usually loses. So perhaps there is some intangible benefit there to consider. Eitherway, I think some more opinions on this would be good.


Great analysis and use of opportunity cost of livestock pen vs TP.

Great comment and use of quoting large blocks of text vs space efficiency.
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Austria supahons
Dragoon
Posts: 336
ESO: supahons

08 Nov 2018, 14:27

on Mongolia + NR 20 with 1-2 hunts

You usually can't afford to camp in your base and lose map control in supremacy (1v1). Usually it's quite bad. (your results don't suprise me)
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China fei123456
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Location: Alderaan

08 Nov 2018, 14:33

If I get like 7-8 or more sheep/cows in age 1 I would build a livestock pen. In mid game you can have tons of food in no time, and you can train mass units, while spending 1000f for 10 sheep at the same time. And a few minutes later you have 10 sheep again... You can have endless food without building mills, and it gathers much faster!
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Great Britain Interjection
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08 Nov 2018, 14:57

Just no

sheep net 4.5 f**king food, it doesn't matter if you build them after you just ate some livestock. You are still going to be waiting for 6 minutes for four and a half food. They are bad and it's never correct.
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India rsy
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08 Nov 2018, 15:49

Interjection wrote:Just no

sheep net 4.5 f**king food, it doesn't matter if you build them after you just ate some livestock. You are still going to be waiting for 6 minutes for four and a half food. They are bad and it's never correct.

He means if he finds livestock on the map like cows on tibet or something. The 4.5 food thing was with investing 100f in sheep wasn't it?
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Turkey HUMMAN
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08 Nov 2018, 16:40

Interjection wrote:Just no

sheep net 4.5 f**king food, it doesn't matter if you build them after you just ate some livestock. You are still going to be waiting for 6 minutes for four and a half food. They are bad and it's never correct.


I think u should compare livestock to mills not hunts.
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Great Britain Interjection
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08 Nov 2018, 16:48

I don't think so because if you've saved your livestock long enough to eat them when mills are you're primary food income, then you're doing it wrong.

Also, once you get all the upgrades, mill are quite good and sheep are actually a net food loss.

The intention with livestock is a way to sneak a little bit of extra boom in & benefit from some extra food before natural resources run out. They shouldn't be replacing hunt/mills as a primary food income.
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Italy Garja
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08 Nov 2018, 18:13

I dont think sheeps are that bad efficiently. There is probably something missing or being misrepresented in the calculation. Afterall it is still 300f for 100f. You can still hunt while they fattens so it isnt an exclusive alternative.
The prohibitive factors are the initial cost and the long time it takes to fatten.
Initial cost can be addressed by a food excess thanks to free herdables in age1.
The fattening time completely depends on the concrete situatuon. If timed well they can fatten when you run out of hunts and the they are superior to mills.
I'd say overall livestock training is a bit underrated now but then again with so many hunts ob the maps it makes sense to ignore it.
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France Kaiserklein
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08 Nov 2018, 18:27

Good analysis. The conclusion of 10 sheep/8 llama/6 cows sounds rather accurate, I definitely wouldn't build a pen for less than that. Also agree with the fact that training a sheep basically just means idling 100f for 6 min.

Hard to be more accurate than @Interjection because of how many parameters would have to be taken into account.
- walking time for hunting
- hunting market upgrades
- in-game time at which the pen is built
- decay of the dead livestock (varies depending on how many vils are set on 1 animal)
- livestock = safe gathering spot and extra natural food
- civ played/match up (can afford 200w? much interested in a large food income later? -200w disrupting the build order?)
- what you could have achieved with the 200w instead of building a pen
- what you could have achieved by eating the not-fully-fattened yaks at any point
- the information your opponent gets by scouting your pen
- probably some stuff I forgot
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France Kaiserklein
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08 Nov 2018, 18:36

Garja wrote:I dont think sheeps are that bad efficiently. There is probably something missing or being misrepresented in the calculation. Afterall it is still 300f for 100f. You can still hunt while they fattens so it isnt an exclusive alternative.

I can confirm training sheep is super inefficient. At the end of the day you really don't get any extra VS out of it, compared to just hunting with your vils. It's really not a good way to boom.
However, obviously, you do get some extra natural food source, since you turn 100f into ~250f (taking decay into account), so I guess it's a way to get food when you can't access hunts. You're basically "creating" food. But that's really not worth it, since you need to idle 100f per sheep for 6 min. At that point you might as well invest into mills, since it's a constant income of food instead of spikes, and it's upgradable.
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Italy Garja
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08 Nov 2018, 19:06

Well it is not an alternative at hunting if we consider 6 minutes betweeen each sheep.
It is only an alternative to hunting if your vills are busy gathering sheeps all the time. And obviously means the fattening time = 0 So in the end it all depends on how you set the function ti represent it.
Once the boom is started and used the free herdables to cover the initial cost then it is self substainable and allows for atleast contonuous vill production. Depending on the number of animals you can use at your only food source.
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Norway iwillspankyou
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08 Nov 2018, 19:18

It depends alot of the situation and the civ.
Iro can ship 15 and 20 sheeps in age 3. And they can dance their way to farms ;) + they can make a farm with the first traviour they get in age 1.
Russia can age up with cows, and ship 7 in age 2.
If your up against a raiding civ like Sioux, I think it could be very smart to sit in your base, eating red meat ;)
China in a map like Mongolia, where you can can get lots of yaks

so many variables, so no def conclusions would be impossible (imo)
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France Kaiserklein
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08 Nov 2018, 19:21

@Garja No, it's not about the 6 minutes. During the 6 minutes, you can do whatever you want, it doesn't affect the efficiency of your pen and livestock.
It's about comparing the gathering rate of livestock vs the gathering rate of hunts. If your vils gather 250f from a fat sheep, they could have instead gathered like 135f from hunts with steel traps, in the same duration. So you don't get 250f worth of VS out of the sheep, but 250-135 = 115f.

So if you train sheep, you're going to "create" food (around 150f per sheep if you remove the initial 100f cost and the decay), which means you won't have to rely as much on hunts. But you basically don't net any VS. You literally get more VS out of a mere 50f treasure than out of training 10 sheep, waiting 6 min for them to fatten, and eating them.
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Italy Garja
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08 Nov 2018, 19:43

So each sheep still nets 15f over hunting (250-150-135).
What about improvents for livestock? Which hint gather rate are using there? What about cows?

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