I agree completely, Lord Shadow...except that I think a complexity ceiling on the wargame subsystem is a feature, not a problem. It means there is more room for complexity in other parts of the game, for the AI to calculate and for the player to keep in mind. Sid Meier's Civ started the 4X genre but it always had an uneasy relationship with that concept because a pure production-based wargame is not an accurate or complete depiction of real history. Civ always wanted to be a little more multidimensional than that, which is why it started out of the gate in Civ1 with an alternate resource sink (spend on technology instead of just spamming more units) and an alternate victory condition to conquest (space race). In Civ2-Civ6 they gradually added culture, religion, leaders, great people, civ traits, governments, civic policies and more. That evolution has been good to see, even if most of these added features just looped back into the 4X concept by buffing or upgrading your production capacity. The great leap forward for Civ was when people right here on civfanatics started doing OCC games ("one city challenge") in Civ3. It was possible to deliberately lose the 4X portion of the game yet still win by culture. I think that woke up the developers' minds to the idea that you could have entire subsystems of the game that did not necessarily loop back into "make your cities better at churning out settlers and warriors."