I usually play the vanilla version on monarch with Mansa. I start off with an early growth, founding 3 cities in a row by chopping. Of course my economy turns whack, so that I research around 60%. Then I spawn cottages all around , which brings my economy back to 90%. From this point my cities thrive, and after a few turns I would find myself at the top of all the rankings. Now I start a war against my most dangerous neighbour, to get me a fifth and a sixth city. Often I start these wars, because I have realized that AIs can keep up with me. After having won a war I struggle hard: Although I have more cities than most of the AIs, I can no longer keep up with my opponents. Sometimes I can snatch a away a diplomatic victory, but usually I do not. What can I do to reward myself for a good early game?