Free policies don't add to the cost, so in fact it's only two policies longer, assuming you win before future era. Sorry, but this argument doesn't fly. Expanding is a big no-no for culture victories: Like the tooltip says, each city you found adds to all policies from then on an additional 30%. Two to three cities is usually optimal. Horizontal growth is *much* more friendly to science than culture because of the tie between science and population and the ease of gaining population at small numbers, which is why ICS is so powerful in this game. This is not to say that a % or per-pop cultural building wouldn't be a good idea. (Though the Opera House does not seem like a good fit to me, the Museum would make much more sense I think.) Even with the boosts to the GA in this mod, it's still the weakest of the bunch in my (and many other's I think) opinion - and if you're going for a culture win you end up with a lot of them, with not much choice but to settle (unless there's a resource you need risking a possibly dangerous war because of your small empire). I really think the GA should operate like every other great person and give a decent bonus to their field with their special ability. I miss the culture wars from civ4 too! So like I said, it's not too different with the mod as without - but it is more fun because of the extra policies, though! However, I think if we were to go with GAs giving culture, perhaps the free policies from eras should be removed. ______________ For anyone interested, an excellent thread regarding culture wins can be found here. It's long, but well worth the read.