I was looking through the patch notes, mainly the absolute brutal horseman overnerf, and arrived at the conclusion that Iron is now the determining factor on whether you win or lose the game. It seems apparent that you now need a mixed army of melee, seige, and (maybe, depending on how much their strength is nerfed) mounted units to successfully attack your neighbor. My logic is thus. - The goal in the patch is larger cities, but now supporting cities cannot contribute to the growth of larger cities via happiness (happiness contribution constrained by pop). Now each city you settle is -2 happiness and that city will never ever be happiness neutral (with the FP and meritocracy nerfs). This tells me that you have to settle cities by new luxury resources or you're losing happiness; you are constrained by the luxuries on the map. If you get a map with redundant local resources and little variety, you must now devote your production to wonders and social policies to happiness policies. -If you don't have access to resources or someone else has more, you lose unless you take the resources from them. This is much harder now. Horsemen get 50% nerf v cities (really? 50%? that is unreal). Archers have reduced effect against cities. Cities heal faster. Cities have higher combat strength. -What does this boil down to? well you need siege engines and melee. Siege engines require Iron. Melee require Iron (well not spearmen or pikemen, but I think we can all agree they are useless, especially now that horsemen are useless). If you have no iron, you cannot build melee or siege. If you cannot acquire more luxury resources from someone who has more, and thus grow larger, you lose the game (expecially since the AI is supposedly more agressive). Someone with more resources will be able to grow faster and larger than you because luxury resources are now the determining factor on empire size. Does this make Catherine (double strategic resources) and Ceaser (better siege and melee) the best civs? Are we bound to wallow in our starting area until the invention of dynamite if we have no iron?