Stealing a CSs worker is not an exploit. To call the act of aggression against a CS an 'exploit' means that you also call any full war against the CS an exploit (game mechanics wise). It's not the act that is the problem, it's the 2ndary mechanics around it that is a problem. Worker stealing has real consequences at higher difficulty levels. You don't play in a bubble, and others will notice the war. You only get '1 free war' wrt to the AIs warmonger ratings (as long as you don't wipe someone out) if those AIs have higher warmonger hate. Ofc, in MP there's no viable preventative mechanic and frankly, CSs are just cities you haven't gotten around to taking yet. So, that said, I'm absolutely in favour of changes to the peace/war cycle mechanics getting changed. Those are very exploity, especially if you don't care about CS opinions (and the quick drop to permanent negative resting points with all CSs if you keep it up). what is horribly 'exploitive' and needs a change is the on/off war button. You can DoW, attack and make peace on the same turn and the CS can do nothing about it. So what 'should' happen is that wars with CSs last the same minimum number of turns as with major civs, and peace with them lasts the same number of minimum turns as with major civs. So you can DoW them to worker steal or whatever, but you can't turn off the war right away within the same turn. As well, once a war is stopped, you can't restart it for some time. 2ndly, I'd even go so far as to have Pledge to Protect force trigger a direct war between the major civs. There are currently major diplo penalties for PtP civs, but there's no actual impetus for those civs to do anything other than get mad at you, diplomatically.