Greece is, of course, several techs ahead of us - but lack Polytheism, so we're safe in getting those Hanging Gardens. They also lack Literature, so the Great Library is quite probably ours next as well. They have Code of Laws and Philosophy, but are still a Despotism, so they probably don't have Republic. I establish the embassy, and Athens is only size 4 and currently building a settler, so it won't be building any wonders soon.
From now on, unless otherwise noted, all my research was following in Greece's footsteps. It's HALF price for any tech that they already got, which is a great savings.
I go ahead and sell Alex fairly-useless Polytheism for 145 gold.
Thebes completes the Hanging Gardens in 10 BC. Just before that happens, I trade Alexander Monarchy for his world map - without giving up mine - and all of his 109 gold. He'll research Republic soon anyway, so may as well trade this. (Will this get him to revolt into less-productive Monarchy, and then maybe make him waste two trips through anarchy to get to Republic?)
Literature in 10 AD, and Thebes cash rushes a regular library, then starts the Great one.
And Greece does go into Monarchy. I make one luxury swap with them - I could use it until I get three police into all my cities, and hopefully when it ends Greece will get stuck with a turn of riots.
Before the game, Sirian told us that a small two-square island south of the start had coal. So I'm trying to get there, but Map Making comes just too late - Greece claims the small coal island about two turns before I can. Oh well, it won't be hard to conquer when we need it. Instead, I claim another two-square island below that, which turned out later to have saltpeter.
Next research target - everything up to Construction. Also, I notice that Greece has been building the Great Lighthouse since before we made contact, but hasn't completed it - what gives? Oh, it's building in Sparta, a stuck-at-size-2 tundra city.
Great Library in 350 AD, with Construction due next turn. Thebes can use a Swordsman to get one turn of prebuilding on its Colosseum. Forbidden Palace completes in Byblos in 420 AD.
After the Colosseum, with nothing else to build, Thebes starts the Great Wall. I guess any culture is better than no culture. Greece starts it too, in Athens which is now size 10. This will be a close race. Looking at the map, Athens appears to have 15 shields max, which is enough to beat me, but the AI likes to optimize for food. Intereshting... Thebes can optimize for shields at deficit food (I already mined all the plains by it to make this possible), and it's due in 9. Greece will very soon enter the middle ages, and I hope I didn't just hand them a Sistine prebuild on a silver platter (darned free Monotheism)...
I reached out and settled a number of cities around the world. There's only one island that we share with Greece, which is a largish one right in the middle between our home continents.
Thebes does get the Great Wall, and here's a shot of our divine city:
We've built lofty Pyramids, created Great works of Literature, Constructed a Great Wall, and Hung our King's Gardens, and now we'll learn how to use... The Wheel! :)
Turns out that Greece's free tech was Feudalism, not Monotheism! I handed Greece a Sun Tzu prebuild, but not a Sistine prebuild. Fine by me; they can have it. They even go to Gracious after that little gift.
Horseback Riding and the Middle Ages come in 590 AD. Thebes is at 2142 culture.
Can't decide whether to go for Republic. It's only 4 turns to research, plus one of anarchy, but I want to make darn sure I get Sistine, Bach's, Copernicus, and then probably go for Shakespeare's. I decide not yet at least, because Thebes has nothing to build right now. Gotta do Monotheism even at full research price. Then one turn later, Greece does get it, halving the price. :) Thebes can start a Courthouse as a prebuild, and get the cathedral the same turn Monotheism comes in. Starts the courthouse again as the Sistine prebuild as we research Theology.
Education next, then backtrack to Republic. Greece starts Sistine about ten turns after I do. Once again it'll be close, but Thebes should win.
Republic comes... and I decide not to revolt yet. I'm optimized for Monarchy right now - three police in most of the cities, and at 43-of-48 allowed units. Unit costs of 43, plus probably 30% lux tax, is too much. Once Sistine comes and all the big cities have cathedrals, then I'll revolt. I'm happy to play follow-Greece's-lead in tech right now anyway.
Can't decide whether to research Music Theory now. I want a fallback in case we miss Sistine, but I don't want Greece to have the same if I get it. But Greece has Feudalism which I don't, so that's a half-price research.. I'll do that. (I'm dying to know how many shields Athens has, but can't nearly afford the 152 gold to investigate it.)
After Feudalism, I shut off research until I see what Greece gets next. (I can recoup the time with deficit research.) Which is Astronomy, to which I then set research. They'll cascade to Copernicus once I get Sistine, but that's okay. Next I plan to research Music Theory (at full price).Index | Next