Okay, okay, calm down! I've been planning to play tonight. Last night I was at a friend's house playing games and watching movies until midnight. Good times. Tonight I'll have the energy to play Civ afterwards, even I'm out until midnight again. I have no intention of abandoning the game, just balancing it with normal life a bit. Last week was exam week, so updates fell off the pace a bit. Yep, that's it. I intentionally chose such a difficult starting location, because I can now (sometimes) beat the game on Monarch. I figured with a year off from CivIII and the poor starting location, things were fairly even for my skill. 2000 AD does look extremely unlikely now, not that I ever thought I would have everything conquered by then, and 2050 AD looks quite unlikely. My very slow expansion early on against the Dutch pretty much guaranteed 2050 wouldn't happen (at least I fought them before they got Swiss Mercenaries!). But that's fine. I didn't anticipate I would conquer the world by 2050 this time when it took me almost that long on Chieftan with a South American start and 16 players. Obviously I'd be worried if I wasn't a superpower by 2050, but not being the sole ruler in the world isn't a huge concern. Forbidden Palace is indeed just ceremonial decoration. I'm not sure where I'll built it - wherever seems appropriate, I guess.