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Epic Twenty-six: Splendid Isolation

This is the story of my game of Civilization IV Epic Twenty-six from Realms Beyond Civilization.

As I've mentioned, I've wanted to do a dedicated espionage economy game for some time. This might be it. High difficulty and a variant ruleset that prohibits trading while the AIs are allowed to do so. That sounds like a great setup for stealing, plus we start with Mining which is adjacent to the Great Wall.

There is just one potential flaw with a stealing plan, the 64,000 question: is our start isolated? We have quite a number of clues towards that end:

  • The game title itself, of course.
  • England as a thematic choice, which should be expected to be on its own island.
  • The game info page says how we can "mostly ignore what the other civs are doing".
  • The Big and Small map choice, which should create several islands suitable for a civ to call home.
  • The land visible across the water gap, which is indication that we are in a Small sector of the map with outlying islands rather than Big.

    But there are also clues against that:

  • Epic speed. If we are isolated and not expected to fight, there's no need for Epic speed.
  • We see no sign of water southwards, so we could indeed be on the Big landmass.
  • We've already done Immortal isolated start back in Holiday Surprise. Would Sullla want to rehash that? Both games are numbered 26, is that coincidence or a connection?

    Let's find out.