Ah, one advantage of Cyrus over Justinian that I hadn't noticed is a scout start. With Always Peace, that's strictly better than a warrior.
By the way, I see that Swiss Pauli attended the Sullla school of sloppy river design.
Tech: Animal Husbandry first. Then Wheel - Pottery, ahead of Mining - Bronze, to get cottages going first.
That scout found two huts quickly, both for cash, bingo, exactly what I wanted to see.
With Universal Suffrage, that meant cash rushing the worker on turn 8! Cyrus and his scout start just gained 7 turns on what Justinian would have done. I picked the right guy.
It is amusing to see the greeting dialogs with peace as the only menu option. No poles or heads or wars available here.
Build order: Worker (cash rushed) - second worker (also cash rushed for its last 12 hammers after one more hut) - scout - warrior - warrior - granary (paused) - settler (at size 6 with two chops) - Stonehenge. Yeah, with Charismatic, and a culture victory that can make fine use of Stonehenge's early-doubled-to-16 culture, the wonder was obvious.
It's not a proper Civ report here unless I throw in some micromanagement tip. This looks crazy, not working a mine while building an Imperialistic settler. But actually the hammers won't get the Imperialistic bonus! I have two chops coming and the settler coming in 3 turns whatever the city works. So any hammers produced now will just become overflow on the third turn, and get divided back by the Imp bonus. More generally, anytime a multiplied hammer does not save a turn towards producing the item, the multiplication disappears.
(And incidentally, Imp can even be a downside if you have a lot of food going into settlers, since foodhammer overflow also gets divided by the Imp bonus. But, as the doctor said, don't do that. Chop or whip your Imp settlers.)
With a settler now produced, time for a dotmap.
L2 is a bleedily bloodily obvious legendary site. I swear, if at least two-thirds of this game's players don't drop a legendary city on that exact spot, Realms Beyond isn't worthy of calling itself a Civilization site. Three gems, two food bonuses, gobs of grassland river. But it can wait until the second settler, since the jungle won't get yoinked by an AI and requires Iron Working and Calendar.
Finding a third legendary site isn't so obvious, though. If only there were just a couple more latitudes south of London* before the tundra began! There's a nice band of flood plains there, but not enough to sustain a proper Legendary city. No, the only decent site within view is eastwards towards America, at the site I marked L1. A cow and four floodies is not awesome, but will have to do. The site can build up to 14 cottages including plains and hills, which will have to be enough.
*Wait, London? I just noticed that. Pauli forgot to rename Persia's city from the original Victoria/England start. I fixed that now and unveiled mighty Persepolis.
The other item of note in the dotmap screenshot is my science rate. It stopped, after I collected all the relevant worker techs and Mysticism for Stonehenge. For the moment, I didn't need research. Cash rushing was more important. I bought my third worker and half of the granary for the second city after one chop. See, I'm a veteran of Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri where precise cash rushing was a critical way to get ahead in the early turns. In fact, that dominance was why from Civ 3 onward, cash rushing was removed from the early game in exchange for clunkier costlier population-rushing.
I chopped two forests into Stonehenge... I wanted to save them for settlers, but with multiple Industrious civs on the map including one with a Mysticism start, had to finish the wonder quickly. The next plan was the Oracle, which meant turning research back on to Priesthood and then Code of Laws, which picked up in trade Alphabet and Mathematics and Iron Working and Monarchy.
Here's a move you don't see every day: Oracle Philosophy. But I was proud of it here. I'm always harping that for culture games, you don't need to found religions, you just need access to them somehow... but the later religions can be hard to receive. You won't get Taoism spread to you if its founder doesn't use it thanks to already having a different religion. The best approach is to let the AIs take the first three religions -- they'll spread them to you in time -- but get the later ones yourself. And Philosophy is well known as AI trading catnip.
One consequence of starting with Stonehenge and Oracle builds is an inevitable Great Prophet. Following my plan to grab later religions, he bulbed Theology in 700 BC. I later traded Theology for more techs of course.
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