I play my games on Epic Speed, with Noble difficulty, slowly moving towards prince. Usually, I research BW first to chop forests and for an axe rush. For the capital, I build worker, worker, settler, all with chops. I can manage to get my second city to hook up bronze fairly quickly, and then I build around a dozen axes to rush my nearest neighbor. By this time, I try to quickly build markets, grocers, with whipping, as well as cottage spamming to get my slider from 60% back to at least 90% by the time gunpowder is researched. Now, this is a typical rushing CE strategy that works on lower difficulties with success. I have tried SE as well as REXing, but I never used it well enough to do better than my CE games. In case of tl;dr : Why is SE better with higher difficulties? And what do you feel about REX vs Early Rush?