I'm preparing a full balance patch, I will publish it today both on workshop and Civ Fanatics Database, when I finish the testing. The topic is really about the balance changes I made, I will explain them so if anyone want to discuss about them, or has a better ideas please go ahead. The objective of this modifications is to make the game more balanced, so many underused aspects are buffed and the few overpowered ones are slightly degraded. This changes try to keep the game as unchanged as possible. Now with a dissection of problems, explanation and solution applied: Most old Vanilla Natural Wonders are a bit crap Low yield is the main issue here, many of them only give 5 yield units, and sometimes/some of them aren't worthy at all. SOLUTION: I buffed them slightly to get al least 6 (yield + happiness) count. Early gold problems Money can be easily an issue on civilization early stage. Until you have markets, road connections and some appreciable pop in your cities, money is too dependent on AI trading, trade routes, and gold luxuries. Out of Tradition is easy to get into red numbers even with barely no military, I consider this a problem specially when there are map types in wich you can be isolated, and/or you don't get any gold luxury. Heck, I even stayed in red numbers on isolated starts after disbanding every single military unit. SOLUTION: Free maintenance on monument/shrines. Simple solution. The most cheap buildings save up to 2 gpt per city, something that won't change economy drastically in the big scheme (is not like you will be buying settlers like mad with it), but makes early gaming more manageable and you will not drop into red numbers so easily, or in more standard situations you will be able to support a few extra units. AI free techs and units change the game too much On higher difficulties the game changes a lot. Most if not all Classical wonders are just gone before you get the chance to build them, forcing you to ignore them, and the free tech pressure makes the first part of the game a mere science catch up, because science is the most important aspect in the game hands down. SOLUTION: AI has no free techs in any difficulties, no settler on deity, and extra units are reduced by one, excluding scout. For example Immortal only has one extra warrior and the scout, deity has one extra worker, extra warrior and scout. This is somehow compensated with the science changes later explained, and the less science you will get from trade routes. Now you can count on early wonders if you decide they are key on your strategy, and you can go on non-science routes for more time until you are outdated, making tech paths more flexible. Warmonger penalties are huge, specially on early stages As many people think, these penalties are extreme, you are labeled trash if you play warmonger on early stages of the game, and the reduction per turn is barely noticeable. This hurt specially to warmonger play styles, where early warmongering is part of the strategy. Once you get into chain denunciation the diplomacy is gone for sure. Enemy civs won't open borders, trade luxuries in ratios of 3:1 or they give you a mere 2gpt per luxury. SOLUTION: Conquering cities give 40% less warmonger penalty, Warmonger penalty decay per turn is increased 40% and denunciations, City Liberations and Capital Captures weight 30% less in leader's opinion. These changes make early warmongering a bit more manageable, but far from diplomacy-free. If you want to conquer two of three cities of a neighbor early, you will get penalties, but not so huge you have to deny diplomacy. The game is too dependent on NC, and scientists ASAP in order to keep a decent science output. Lets face it, as you get into the higher difficulty levels, early National collegue, beelining education and placing Scientists ASAP are all a must. Scientists boost science output by a lot at the time you get universities, plus the early Academies also make an important difference in science output. The different of doing it this way or not doing it is huge. SOLUTION: Library: +1 science University: +2 Science, 25% instead of 33% science boost. National College bonus split with Oxford University (25% boost to city science each), Oxford unlocked at architecture. Scientist specialists give two extra science instead of three. Academy improvement base science down from 8 to 6 (up to 10 with tech yield upgrades). This way non science-focused approaches will have less impact in science output, while the science approach still gets similar numbers. The player has more margin to choose to delay education or to farm other specialists instead of scientists. Making NC weaker isn't so big issue because AI will have a slower start, so it's indirectly compensated by it. The less scientist output is compensated with base science from libraries and universities. Early academies where horribly strong, they are still great but not decisive. Standard GPs other than Scientist are barely used, and the use options are near always better than the improvement option Even with a downgraded Academy, the output difference between academy and Manufactory/Customs house is considerable. Due to the low output, the Production Rush or the Trade Mission abilities are used most of the time. SOLUTION: To make Manufactory/Customs house more interesting, the base value is risen from 4 to 5, and the tech upgrades from chemistry and economics rise the value by two. Windmill is barely worthy, and you can't set all four production slots on hill cities Windmill low production bonuses make it a low opportunity cost. Not being able to build them in hills isn't so much of an issue, especially because you won't build them anyways most of the time, but you miss a specialist slot, and you should have all 4 specialist slots in any city. SOLUTION: To make Windmill more worthy, the not on hills requirement was removed, and the base production bonus goes up to 3. Kremlin, Ankor Wat and Pentagon are the worst wonders Ankor Wat ability is overlooked. Kremlin is mostly wanted for the free policy, but the production bonus is too situational. Pentago just comes too late to be of real use. SOLUTION: Ankor Wat also provides +3 gold and +3 culture. Kremlin armor production bonus down to 30% but gets a base production bonus of +5, and Pentagon now unlocked in Combustion. Some religion beliefs are clearly underpowered Some pantheons are light versions of part of social policies which is truly forgettable. Ceremonial burial downgrade makes it as a Founder belief even worse than many happiness boosting follower beliefs. World church and peace loving require followers not in your city, and the numbers are quite high, so is hard to get into decent numbers even if you have a completely dominant religion. SOLUTION: Goddess of protection: From 30% to 50% bonus city ranged damage. Religious settlements. Faster border growth boosted from 15% to 25% bonus Ceremonial burial: boosted by 50%, now each three cities give 2 happiness Peace loving: Boosted to 1 happiness for each 6 followers instead of 8. World church: Boosted to 1 culture per 4 followers instead of 5. The two first pantheon beliefs have the bonuses values switched with the Tradition policy versions, it makes more sense this way. Siege units are near useless until Artillery (excluding some Uniques) Catapults, Trebuchets and Cannons must enter into city range to get their shots out, and they can be crushed just as easy as ranged units (or even more due to not benefit from rough terrain bonuses), while ranged are much more versatile due to not having to setup for fire, so siege is eclipsed by ranged until artillery, and makes the renaissance units the less useful for military operations. SOLUTION: All siege units (except Siege tower) get Cover I promotion as a base promotion. This gives a slight indirect nerf to ranged, witch BTW is welcomed, but more importantly, makes siege more durable, able to withstand a first round from a city + possible ranged garrison prior to fire or retreat. On social policies, Tradition and Rationalism are the most used because of the major impact on the game compared to other policies Tradition has become the best ancient option. It remains unchanged in BNW (even buffed with the Faith Engineer), where early gold and happiness are severely nerfed, making it a solid choice for a fluent early empire setup. Liberty still works OK, fast city setup is always powerful, but is severely restricted due to with gold and happiness problems, so the extra cities on initial setup is hard to achieve. Honor and Piety boost Military/Faitch in several ways, but the production/growth bonuses from tradition/liberty totally eclipses them. Piety also lack early culture boosting, making a pain to finish the tree without using the beliefs to do so. Rationalism is too powerful even it got nerfed. You get huge boosts to science witch is the most important resource. Even going only for Opener + Secularism provides a huge 35-40% science boost for only two policies. SOLUTION: · Tradition border growth cut from 25% to 15%. Ranged strength down from 50% to 30%. Happiness and gold in capital down from +1 each two pop to +1 each three pop. · Liberty unhappiness cut from non-occupied pop boost from -5% to -8%. · Honor give +2 prod in capital and 10% unit production bonus instead of 15% melee, three units maintenance-free, and instead of garrison happiness and culture: Walls, Stables and Forges give +1 happiness and +1 Culture, plus 25% building bonus. Discipline promotion also grants a +25% flanking bonus. · Piety grants +1 culture from shrines and temples, +1 food from granaries and hospitals, +4 happiness from grand temple, and -10% policy cost for future policies. · Rationalism's Secularism science bonus from each specialist reduced from 2 to 1. Tradition is very good as it is, and the synergies and policy placement are just perfect, so I opted to reduce the existing bonuses instead of re-arranging or removing core SP abilities. Liberty is indirectly buffed thanks to free monuments and shrines, so money is not so much of a problem. The only other restriction that hurt liberty is happiness, so lowering the mark of 1 happiness from each 20 pop to 13 should make this policy stable. Honor just provides what is needed for early harass and the production boosts are enough to not fall too behind due to the lack of empire-building policy abilities. Piety, even divided with Aesthetics, should still be king on culture, and give some minor empire-building aids in form of happiness and growth to not fall too behind in the early game. Rationalism: Secularism nerf should be enough to keep the tree less of a no-brainer, but still very powerful, and in many situations the best option. Thanks for reading this post.