Water basics by a Diamond player


First I will briefly explain why water is important:
- Each dock works like another TC, more ships = more income = more army
- Fish is the fastest food source in the game, but installing a fishing economy will delay you a bit
- Deep fish regenrates over time, this means you will never need a costly farm transition

When going water you need to consider 2 factors:
1- How easy to setup your docks and deny enemy docks
2- How fast you can setup you fishing econmy

To explain this point, I will use three map examples: Baltic, Ancient spires and Water holes.
- In Baltic, the amount of deep fish is huge, and your woodline is so far away from your opponenet base. So there is no way you can deny Fishing using land units. And if you succeed to setup a fishing economy, the game is over. You have more food than you ever need. The Water is so close to your TC so the return on investement is fast and guranteed

- In water holes, denying docks or wood gathering becomes a possiblity. So scouting is very important and you shouldn't fully commit to water economy unless you are sure you defend it. A tower rush on your woodline can ruin your economy if you don't deal with it quickly. The return of investement is less fast but definetly not guranteed.

- In ancient spires, it is basically impossible to deny you ennemy's water. But in this map, there is only shore fishes. This means your food economy will explode and get enough advantages before the fishes ran out. The return of investement is fast and guranteed but your food economy is on a timer.

What civs should you play?
As Beasty said, the best water civs are the civs with better economy, and I could say also: Better econmy and better ways to defend it and deny you enemy's at the early stages:
The best civs are: China - HRE - Rus
Personaly, I consider Rus the best because you have the Militia to deny enemy's wood, you have free gold from hunting deers and you can fast feodal and transform your fishing ships into military ships and destroy your enemy's fishing production.

How many Villagers on wood and how many fishing ships?
In my games I get 7 wood villagers for each dock. Not sure if it is the best number.
If you are afraid to commit on water then lose all your ships, you can build a dock for each 3 fishing ships and guarisson them in case of emergency.

Finally, I am just a diamond player, I didnt even reach conqueror in solo. So take my words with a pinch of salt. If you have any tips and tricks, pls share it below.