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Food  Scouting

The Quick Tips pages are short few line statements
that can improve your game.  They are not in any
particular order.  Allot of these tips are minor details,
but, if you use  them they will give you a major
advantage over your enemy.

At the start of the game keep a constant flow of villagers coming
out of the Towncenter.  As one villager is nearing completion,
make sure another one is in the queue.

At the start of each game (unless your civilization is Chinese) queue up vils first
then grab all 3 vils and build one house. Then put the first 7 vils on food 8th on building another house.

When your village population is -2 from the total build another house.

Go for the sheep for your first food source.  Two reasons for this.  Prevent
your enemy form stealing them.  It is a bit faster than berries, no mill is needed and you place the sheep directly next to the TC to reduce the walking distance.

You will need 8 villagers on food to maintain a uninterrupted queue of villagers form the TC.  I prefer 9 to insure this.

Sheep rot after they are killed so kill just one or two at a time.  Spread the sheep out a little so your villages can cut meat from all sides.

Use your scout to find more food look for berries and more sheep.  Set way points
in a circle around TC just inside of the black unrevealed area.  Increase
the radius of the circle with each pass until you find 4 more sheep
(on most maps, sometimes less), berry bushes,2 gold mines,
1 stone mine and a good source of wood.

When your vils are almost done with the sheep, have a vil build a
mill by the berries.

After the berries are done hunt.  Hunting requires no wood.
Wild boar are are the best hunting, because vils cut 30 food at a
time they require little management.  12(sometimes 13) vils can
cut meat from a boar at the same time.  Always use at least 6 or
you will lose a vil or 2.  Retreat the the vil the boar is attacking
while the other hunters kill the boar.

The best way to hunt deer is to kill them all first then have a vil build a
mill in the middle of the kills.  Use 2 or more vils to kill dear quickly so they don't run so far.

Shore fish  are another free source of food.   If you have 2 or more shore fish, build a mil to harvest them early in the game. 

When placing your mill at the berries leave enough space so your vils can walk between the berries and mill.  If you place it to tight the vils will waste time walking around to the other side to gather berries.  Place the mill on the side of the berries with any other food source nearby, such as shore fish, boar, and deer.

Fishing boats are a slower food source(except for Japanese).  If your on a water type map start building these in late Dark age.  Your boats although slower pay for themselves many times over as the game advances.   In later ages start building fish traps.

Use your Hot Keys.  This will speed up your age advancement times and free up time for much more  important things like scouting,  conducting battles, micromanaging villagers,                              allied chat and so on..

Use your scout to find food first then resources.  Then                                                     
explore the area around your town.  Locate areas  for wall                                                          
placement,  river passes, secondary resources in case you need to
leave in a hurry, etc.

Now find the enemy with your scout.  Use the small map in the
right hand corner to set way points.  Scout the edges first about 4
town centers in length from the end the map.  You will most likely detect
your this way on your first pass.

Find your closest enemy and scout him thoroughly.  Find his TC, wood cutters gold miners, stone miners, building placement, where he is likely to place his walls, etc. 

When your not using your scout place him on patrol with way points.   If you leave him just sitting in an enemy area there is a chance the enemy will kill him with a bunch of villagers before you can retreat him  Patrol the area between you and your closest enemy.   This is good for a rush or defence strategy.  If you plan on rushing your scout will detect any walls going up.     Walls Kill any chance of a surprize rush.  If your planning to wall up yourself your scout will detect enemy buildings inside your planned wall area or close to your town.   When I see enemy vils heading my way I like to follow them at a distance.  If they get to close to my town I let them start making there buildings  then club then to death with my vils.  This may hurt your opponent delaying his age times becuase he needed  that building to advance or kill his feudal rush and force him to put more vils on wood.  Leave that building uncompleted and enemy will probaly send more vils to finish it.  Have your scout keep a eye on it while in patraol mode. 

Dark age Scouting Prepairing for a Fuedal Rush
This includes scouts as attack units - see Fuedal Rushing in the rushing section.

Fuedal Scouting  Prepairing for a Castle Rush