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Building, building, building

So, it looks like the goal now is to speed up the economic curve and race for the fastest space launch. Moscow finishes the Colossus to help towards that goal; I'm a bit surprised that it lasted until 550 BC without somebody else finishing it. The Colossus is Expansionist, of course, so I start looking up the tree for a Scientific wonder to get our Golden Age. The Great Library won't be worth it, and the next one after that is... not until Newton's. Why in the world isn't Copernicus scientific?

I research Polytheism, and trade it to Babylon to get Construction. Monarchy next, and we get it and revolt in 510 BC, drawing 5 turns of anarchy. Currency finishes researching in 290 BC, and I trade it for Philosophy, entering the Middle Ages. Monotheism comes in for free as expected.

I encounter an interesting artifact of the worker restrictions of the game. My city-states almost have to make little treaties with each other to get certain improvements. For instance, Odessa couldn't get irrigation until Athens' worker brought some over to the eastern side of that city, despite Athens having better tiles to improve. And on the western coast, I end up almost role-playing it. Smolensk isn't connected by road, and it needs Sevastopol's worker to go build a road on an unworked tile at the west side of Sevastopol's radius to get connected. Sevastopol refuses to spare its worker for that until Smolensk agrees to give it a spearman! This is cool and a little bit freaky, seeing the scenario theme running itself here...!

I got lazy about the barb camp outside Tblisi, which didn't manage to whip out a library before we revolted....

Well, pull out the spearman and leave the town to the barbs. I establish the remaining two embassies to use up my gold, and only lose about 25 to the pillagers. At least its worker was safely to the south.

Moscow begins the Great Lighthouse after the Colossus. If there's one thing we know about this game, it's that making contact greatly speeds global tech progress. Also, Minsk is the obvious choice to build the Forbidden Palace, which it does. I start researching up the economic side of the Middle Ages tree.

Babylon finishes the Oracle at the very late date of 170 BC. Germany cascades and gets the Great Wall.

A galley survived one turn at sea, and made the jump to the vacant southwestern island. Then it found Germany! They're a few techs behind. I trade them Polytheism + Construction for Contact with India, World Map, 275 gold. And Polytheism to India for his 93 gold. I decide not to trade contacts between the continents - I'd rather keep my lead for awhile and be able to sell to two different civs at 2nd-civ inflated price. With the extra gold from them, I can now jack research to 100% instead of break-even.

Even though we've made contact, Moscow continues and completes the Great Lighthouse. There is a 4-square sea-to-sea crossing east of Odessa going over to the Indo-German continent, which is makable with the Lighthouse. And there's some luxuries not yet claimed over there. Athens switches to settler, and Odessa builds a galley. That leads to this.

May as well make use of Communism's ability to place cities anywhere. It'll be useless 1/1 for a very long time right now, but can do just fine once we go Bolshevik.

Minsk finishes the Forbidden Palace in 90 AD. The iron by Minsk runs out, but fortunately Athens has another. Kiev finishes the Hanging Gardens; I had a bit of trouble deciding between that and letting the city build all the way through to Sistine, but it's going to take a VERY long time before any cathedrals get going, and the HG will let me drop luxuries a notch NOW and speed research.

I also run another settler over to Indo-Germany and claim yet another luxury. That makes 12 cities.

I beeline Education, and immediately build our cheap universities everywhere. Banking is up next; I've read of Sirian's penchant for a very early Wall Street, and so I try it. Moscow, St. Pete, Kiev, Minsk, and Athens build the banks, and Athens starts Wall Street.

While I was doing that, Babylon researches Feudalism and trades it to me, saving me some research time and speeding me towards space. I research Astronomy next, because Moscow wants to build Copernicus. I decide against Navigation now; it would let us hook up the luxury colonies much sooner than waiting to go up the entire tree to Magnetism, but the colonies don't have harbors yet and I can't spend the cash to rush them.

I research Engineering, and trade it for everybody's pocket change. I set research to zero for a bit while I build up to the 1k gold for Wall Street, hoping someone will research Invention for me in the interim, but that doesn't happen. Note that the continents still don't have contact with each other, and that trading them around would not help anyone research Invention faster.

Athens completes Wall Street in 640 AD, leading to this:

Wall Street is paying EVERY PENNY of my civ's expenses. I would now run 100% research from now until the end of the game. That Wall Street is indeed pretty darn powerful this early.

In 720 AD, Germany demands contact with Egypt... I don't want to bother fighting him - and definitely don't want to risk having to expend cash to defend the luxury colonies. So I cave, and by the next turn everyone has traded the contacts all around.

Egypt and Babylon also got Navigation. So I trade Chemistry to Egypt for - wow - Navigation + Chivalry + 13/turn + 30g.

Also, I'm back down to 2nd in territory in the world. I could try to capture a city from someone, but don't feel like it. If I did, it would probably be Heliopolis, which controls what appears to be the world's only gem, and has no overlap with any other city. But, once again the communistic scenario is running almost without my control - every city-state keeps building its own infrastructure and doesn't want to give up its resources to build military.

Moscow's worker actually runs out of jobs to do while the city is only size 11, so it merges back into the city.

While Moscow was building Copernicus and then prebuilding for Newton's, St. Petersburg and Kiev also started wonders. St. Pete took Magellan's when that became available - I don't know what I was smoking to do that. But check this out:

I've never seen tech speed this fast ahead of the wonder building. Newton's is available and nobody has built Sun Tzu's! Imagine if I was in Republic! Well, the dominoes fall in the next few turns. I build Newton's in Moscow, but Kiev misses Bach's by a single turn with no other wonder to swap to -- and even the Palace isn't expensive enough to carry it over to Suffrage. Kiev builds a very very expensive cathedral.

"Build the Colossus, Copernicus, and Newton's in the same city" is usually one of the first things you see in a Civilization strategy guide. Well, it's just not that easy to do in practice above Warlord, but I pulled it off here.

Moscow churning out all this extra science should just about compensate for the fact that I have only 13 cities instead of the full 14, and keep me on track for what I hope will be the fastest space win. There was no war anywhere on the planet during the entire medieval age.

Now, I've been caught by surprise by this before, but I'm ready for it this time:

Golden Age!

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