So, it seems like more and more people are doing the Zulu rush strategy in MP games... I'm hoping to start a thread collecting wisdom in effective ways to counter Zulu players early on. 1) What I'm finding is that even if they focus all resources on going after a capital early on, they still end up pulling ahead in science/growth AS LONG AS THEY GET AT LEAST 1 AI CAPITAL. That's the 'hill to die on' so to speak - if you can prevent them from getting an AI capital, you can pull ahead in science, rush to beat them to some key defensive techs, and then start cleaning up AI or their underprotected cities early on. 2) Some of the Zulu strat depends on luck of placement - if they're on an island, or far corner of a map and not close to you or AI, you can typically count on them leading a good part of the earlier impi rush advantage (though a halfway decent Zulu player can usually still do OK if they get lots of huts, rush settlers, and know how to compete scientifically. 3) I have the best luck countering with a good growth or science CIV - like the Chinese or Japanese. If you can rush research BW early on, and get contact with other AI's, then you can build up your own archer armies quickly, and if you know the Zulu are going after AI's to snag capitals early on, you can sell them BW in time for them to pump out some archers and stave off defeat (and make some cash in the process) 4) Alternatively, sometimes I'll try to pump out archer armies, and camp them in the Zulu capital's wood/production resources. This can keep them from pumping out too many units, and starves their growth while you leap ahead in science. If you're lucky enough for them to be on a map with a hill blocking a strategic choke-point, this works equally well to camp archers there, and back them up later with a horse army to take out challengers. The problem I find is that is is EXTREMELY difficult against a reasonably competent Zulu player if they happen to start really close to you or another AI. Let's face it: AI's don't typically do a great job of defending themselves strategically, especially early in the game, and that makes them ripe for the picking as a second capital city to get science going early on. You can say 'rush HBR early and take them out,' or 'offense is the best defense' but by the time you get the tech, pop off an army of riders and get to them, they've usually already got BW and are getting settled down for defense. Any thoughts or suggestions? I think they only way people will stop overusing this civ is if there can be some good counters that consistently even (or reverse) the odds. Truth is, a bad player with Zulu is still bad, and usually not too hard to take - but a good player with Zulu that can adjust strategies after an early random loss of his first Impi armies or a less-than-ideal placement can still be a real pain in the ass, and stay competitive in science through the game, especially if they know to set up some good gold cities around dye one they get the era bonus of 50% gold production, etc. Thoughts? Let's stop these Zulu r-tards!