Where is everybody?

It would really help to find some other civs, to fill us in on all the techs we didn't research. Our Great Lighthouse is coming close to finishing, and we're praying that we get it first. Even a bit before it finishes, I start sending settlers to the western island, via the safe route.

It's also time to think Forbidden Palace. Well... there just really isn't any ideal place for it. About the best I can do is in Tlacopan, three cities south from the capital; it'll keep all the southern cities in the fertile terrain within three rings. Maybe later if we ever get a GL, we'll move the Palace to a more optimal location. Tlacopan whips two citizens for a Courthouse (it's got a metric buttload of food) and begins the Forbidden Palace in 270 BC. I could build it on the western island, just as I did in Epic One, but I decided not to. It would complete much later, and those cities will be third or fourth ring anyway, which is fine on a large map. Also, they won't have Pyramids, Bach's, or Hoover's benefits, and will have to build up their own infrastructure.

150 BC: Republic comes in, and save for the population check. Research to... Iron Working, I guess. I decide to wait two turns until the Great Lighthouse finishes to revolt - we want to ensure we get it, and want the galleys to be able to explore during anarchy. We do get it, and revolt in 90 BC. 6 turns anarchy, bleah. Egypt builds Great Wall, must have cascaded from the Lighthouse. (That means they've got Construction! Gotta find them...)

10 BC: Our galley plays leapfrog across a small patch of sea to the west, and finds Egypt! We're Not Alone Anymore! They have contact with the French and Americans, and a BIG pile of techs. Unfortunately, we haven't anything to trade them. If we can in fact get the Great Library, we'll be in great shape. Hmm, Egypt does have more culture than I would've liked - about two-thirds of ours. We might need to raze some cities later to ensure they don't have more than half our culture when we hit 100k.

For the first time EVER in Civ, I pay gold-per-turn for a MAP. We've GOT to find France and America. WOW, Sirian stacked the deck against us with this map. Without the Lighthouse, no contact could be made until Astronomy, which would take FOREVER to research alone. Some players probably didn't find any AIs until they were in the Industrial age!

10 AD: Population 2,979,000. I'm sure others did better.

30 AD: We're a Republic. Need 20% lux now, with several whipping effects still lingering, and will probably continue to need that as cities grow. Sometime soon, we'll have Ivory online when a city on that island manages to complete a harbor. Our Great Library is due in 10. Egypt is building it in Memphis, which is currently size 2 despite having a wheat. (Maybe everyone over here just got Literature?)

Ixtapaluca in the picture was founded as a filler city, to be a worker factory with all that tundra game. Once the Forbidden Palace and a courthouse completed, this city produced a worker every other turn right up until 1500 AD.

In 70 AD, we sail to and meet America. I'm still holding off on buying any tech until we see if we do get the GL. Uh oh, Washington is building it. Sounds like a great time for an embassy...

Whew, and sheesh. Have the AIs heard of the luxury slider?

In 150 AD, we finally contact France. Where are they building the GL? Lyons, which is only size 3. I think we're safe. Nobody is constructing any medieval wonders yet, nor the Hanging Gardens, so we aren't all that far behind.

We get the Great Library in 210 AD. Whoooa - I did NOT realize that'd be a Golden Age!! Well, that's one way to get aqueducts, temples, and medieval wonders built. Warrior Code, The Wheel, Mathematics, Horseback Riding, Polytheism, Currency, and Construction pour out of the GL, and Monotheism comes in for free. Set to Theology, due in 5 turns! Egypt will pay 22gpt for Monotheism, we'll take it.

In 270 AD, the Forbidden Palace completes, helping our economy along nicely.

We research, in order, Theology, Printing Press, Education, Banking, and Democracy, all but the first in 4 turns. Egypt demands Banking, and not really having any reason to refuse, we give it to them.

440 AD: the Golden Age has ended, and Democracy comes in. We revolt. It will cost a few turns of culture, but the fastest civ-wide cultural win should be in the bag already. I think Democracy will pay off in the long run, trying for Fastest Modern Age and a long-shot at Longevity for population before 1500. 520 AD brings us the Hanging Gardens.

670 AD: Sistine, JS Bach, and Sun Tzu all complete simultaneously! The latter was Egypt's though. Next turn, we complete Copernicus. Everyone cascades to Leo's. Lyons is building it, a size 6 city. Atlanta is building it, another size 6. Heliopolis is, and is size 12. Investigate it - it's due in one turn! Swap to a Palace placeholder for Hoover in Tzintzuntzen. We can start that already, since Sci Method is nine techs away -- 36 turns, less if somebody else researches something along the way. We'll need someone to research Economics to have a placeholder for ToE, though.

740 AD: The AIs get Navigation. I trade Physics for it and lots of lux. Although Lincoln doesn't want to trade his silks for it. 830 AD: Magnetism researched, Industrial Age. All the AIs enter at the same time too - they must have researched Metallurgy and Magnetism together at the same time.

Now THIS was the mother of all farmer's gambits. With Nationalism now, I start skimming drafted riflemen off cities that are maxed out at size 12.

Wow, Joanie pays 99 gpt for Nationalism.

For the first time EVER, I don't research Industrialization immediately. We really don't need Factories right now, having all the cultural buildings built in the core cities, and no need to build military. Rather, I speed towards Replaceable Parts, to get those jungles cleared and everything railroaded.

I was holding on to Shakespeare's in Tlacopan (the FP city) in hopes of using it as a ToE placeholder, but it's going to complete now in 930 AD. Oh well, we'll take it. This would in fact actually help the city stay content, since it spent a ton of time building wonders and never got a marketplace until the modern age (!). I was also holding on to Magellan's as a possible ToE placeholder, but that also completes. Won't SOMEBODY research Economics?

Argh. Paris builds Newton's one turn before I can, and there isn't any other wonder to switch to (Palace is already being used as Hoover's placeholder.) Still a couple banks short of being able to switch to Wall Street. Yech, 300 shields down the drain.

Sci Meth comes in 1030 AD. Unfortunately, we weren't able to prebuild ToE. So I decide to drop Tzintzuntzen from Palace/Hoover to take ToE now, losing 350 shields, since that can give us Sanitation (which we need ASAP) and Atomic Theory, then research Electronics. Heh, for the second ToE advance, the game suggests Chivalry!

Egypt researches Industrialization, helping us by 4 turns on our quest for the Modern Age. We trade them Sci Method, Incense, and 400 gold for it. I actually only built around a dozen factories, in the core cities... no other city needed one and I really didn't want the pollution headaches. (Global warming reduces potential population.)

1100 AD: Let's see when actually we can get this culture win. 23699 culture last turn, 24156 now. 550 per turn is about 140 turns until we win, which will be sometime around 1770, minus additional buildings and doublings.

Egypt lands something by undefended Jilotzingo on an eastern island. I use scroll-ahead to get there and rush an infantry. Turns out to be two War Chariots. WTF? Are they seriously going to attack?

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