I see that the Pirates regularly leave their conquered cities unguarded (easy pickings for me, especially since they are often coastal), whereas the normal AIs don't.
Are the Pirates under-guarding their cities BECAUSE the other AIs leave them alone?
The patch seems not to resolve the issue with barbarian cities. For some reason AI still does not take those cities back.
I think the patch is a right thing to do in general, though, just not a solution to this particular problem in this ticket -> will open a new ticket for handling this existing patch.
In 3.0.6 the problem is still here.
I took back several empty (no units) cities from barbarians, but AI had something like 50 or 100 turn to do the same before me. The cities were 4 to 6 in size.
I 'll get a try to the patch to check it.
I don't understand your patch
+/* Size 1 city gets destroyed when conquered. It's still a good thing + * stop enemy from having it. */ +#define CITY_CONQUEST_WORTH(_city_, _data_) \ + (_data_->worth * 0.9 + (city_size_get(_city_) - 0.5) * 10)
1. It can reduces the desire :
new = old * 0.9 + 10 * size - 5 new < old <=> old > 100 size - 50 so we decrease worth if : size = 1 and previous worth > 50 s = 2 , w > 150 s = 3 , w > 250 ...
2. Won't it be better to just increase worth = intrinsic value of a city where it is calculated
Here we consider military action, but there are other way to get a city (buy it with spy, exchange it, maybe other )
AI nations usually get completely consumed by barbarians, if barbarians are lucky enough to conquer one city as beachhead. Barbarians do conquer further cities, but AI players very rarely conquer them back. Likely this is because barbarians sell buildings from the cities they have conquered, and that makes AI want for those cities too low.