The reason i think this is that I have just finished an immortal game playing as the Dutch. I lost, but it was ever so close. I started boxed in by a city state but with room to expand over seas, so i went hard tradition then expanded later. Unfortunately, though, i missed founding a religion, which is more than a little tricky on immortal. "No problem", i thought. But i was next to Venice who had incense and wine, so they picked monastries, and spammed it to me, which of course was little or no use. So no religious beenits for about the entire game. I tried to win anyway, went for space, but in the end was beaten by Alex who won diplo. I was trying to save up enough money to buy out his city states, which i managed the first time round, but i could afford more than 4 the second time, and he won, with me needing only 2 turns to finish my last spaceship part and launch. Anyway, point is that at 1917 (which is when i lost), Washington was 3 capitals away from domination and was huge, the biggest ive ever seen America. He was aso miles ahead in culture and was influential with everyone except for Alex. It was a very close game and i almost won, but not quite, and that in itself is where i think huge kudos to he developers. They have managed to make a civ game interesting in the last 3rd. I would have won space, but was pipped att he last by another civ. So often in civ games the end game has been a virtual non entity. I think its pretty much there now. Thoughts? Or did i just have an exceptional game?