I'm really interested in Marin Alvito's "Deity Spaceship in under 200 turns" strategy. Here's my attempt to pull it off at the lowly King level. I certainly don't expect to come in under 200 turns, but maybe I can keep it under 250. [As you may gather from the thread title, this didn't work out so well. I'd like some advice on how to do better next time.] My first game as Babylon, King, Continents, Standard Size and Speed. The starting position looks pretty good; here's the map at Turn 15: Spoiler : The map is rich in luxuries, with gold, silver, incense, and marble at near-ICS spacing around Babylon. Another silver and incense lie to the south within a reasonable distance, good trade bait. The only problem is the "wealth" of desert, but there are hills and wheat and oases out there. The other items are Japan to the SE and Rome to the SW. My intention is to settle a "spine" of ICS-spaced cities on or adjacent to luxuries down to the river in the SW to forestall Rome, then fill in, with intent to get some space as well as bringing luxuries online fast. So that would go incense/silver/adjacent to incense then two flood plain wheat, then pickup the gold, marble, and the second silver. [Memo: a warrior rush would have been difficult or at least slow because there are no close-by AI civs.] At this point we've researched Mining and Pottery and have Calendar in progress for Incense. Turn 21: the first Settler comes out, and my idea is to send him down to the southern silver where our warrior is healing, then use that city to build a settler for the SW while Babylon produces another for one of the more northerly luxuries. It only delays founding the second city by one turn. Spoiler : Turn 24: Akkad founded on Silver, starts a Warrior. Calendar complete. We'll pick up Masonry (for Marble) on the way to Construction, but once we finally have a Worker we'll want Animal Husbandry for the livestock (and incidentally to find horses). Since neither AI nor CS is nearby I guess Babylon will have to build a Worker, and I guess produce the second Settler first. Speaking of Workers, Akkad will have little food until those wheat get farmed, 15 turns to grow to Size 2. [Memo: send a warrior north, it's likely there's another CS up there.] Speaking of CS, our Scout has found three: Singapore, Budapest, and Monaco, so one of each sort. Turn 26: Barbarian time again. Our Scout stumbles across a pair of barb warriors far to the SW, but fortunately does so from a forested hill. At this point an Iroquois warrior also shows up to give the barbs something else to worry (about). More importantly, a lightly-damaged barb warrior emerges from the fog NE of Babylon, and in range thereof. My newly-healed warrior starts north from Akkad as the city opens fire. Turns 27-30: Humph. Babylon is starving thanks to that stupid barbarian sitting on my only 2F tile. The warrior arrives to put the barb out of our misery. On Turn 30 "You may adopt a policy" but I'm planning to hoard these until the Renaissance. Spoiler : Turn 32: As hoped, our Warrior finds a northern CS, Sidon (from whom we would not mind stealing a worker, since we don't care about trade with a militaristic CS). Unfortunately the Warrior also finds a barb encampment and two warriors. I belatedly remember to buy an oasis tile for poor parched Akkad. Wasted a few turns there!! Turns 33-34: 2nd Settler produced. 4 possible locations, gold, silver, incense, or marble. We have silver, the incense is out in the desert with no production, the marble competes with Babylon for hammers, so let's go for the gold...and start a Worker in Babylon. [I question this, should I produce another Settler? A warrior? Forget the warrior. A third settler could tap a new luxury or double up on silver, without needing a worker. However, the cities are woefully underdeveloped, and a fourth city will slow down SP generation.] Another subtle decision, early enough that it may matter: Babylon can grow in 16 Turns, while producing a worker in 12, or can stagnate and produce the worker in 10. Since it's my capital I'll let Babylon move toward growth, though I'll switch to a Settler before it actually grows. Speaking of warriors, Sidon shoots up one of the barbs, and our guy finishes him off, garnering a Medic promotion. [Earlier barbs gave him a Shock I promotion, and I forget why I chose the clear terrain promo...actually that's where I was fighting at the time.] Masonry completes, and it's 19 turns to Construction and the Classical Era or 7 turns to Animal Husbandry and those Babylonian sheep. Lamb it is.) Spoiler : Turn 35: Dur-Kurigalzu founded (say *that* name three times fast!). We won't sell the gold or happiness will go into the red. Maybe that would be reason enough to build a Settler rather than a Worker in Babylon. Meanwhile, the baby city has +3 food, +2 production, and +3 gold. Nice to have gold and fish (so now we want Sailing). In the south, Akkad is firing on a passing barb. Meanwhile, our Scout has discovered Ragusa, a second friendly Maritime, south of the Iroquois. Spoiler : Turn 37: Our Warrior has healed, and has three choices: hang out, hoping to bag a worker from Sidon, attack the barb camp in the forest (not a paying proposition), or head south for general use. South it is. Meanwhile Akkad has grown to 2, and switches from Warrior (7 turns) to Settler (23 turns). This leaves us very vulnerable, I suppose. Turn 40: Our Scout meets a Napoleonic Warrior. There goes the neighborhood (as if Oda and Augustus were not bad enough). Turn 41: "An Unmet Player has entered the Classical Era." Hey, we're only about 10 turns off. Turn 45: We finally have a Worker, who heads for the sheep. Now I could immediately start a Settler (which the other two cities are already building), or start on a Warrior (6 turns) while growing to Size 3 (4 turns). Let's go for growth and a warrior. Turn 46: Our Scout opportunistically attacks and kills a damaged barb warrior, freeing a worker that belonged to newly-discovered Cape Town. It would take years to get this worker back to Babylonian territory, so we return it; we are temporarily friends of Cape Town (very temporarily, since we're at 35/30 and hostile Cape Town will drop at 1.5 per). Turn 47: Worker starts on a pasture. Woopee. Turn 50: Trade Silver to Hiawatha for 300 gp, enough to make Singapore an ally, at least momentarily...but it still makes no sense when two cities are producing settlers and a third is about to. Turn 51: Babylon produces our second Warrior, doubling our army. Woopee. Choice: Settler or Worker. The other two cities will produce Settlers in 4 and 5 turns respectively, and right now our Happiness is ONE. Make it a Worker, likely followed by a Library. Turn 52: Construction, and the Classical Era. Hiawatha enters the same turn. Maybe it's time to enable our UU by picking up Archery. It's only 4 turns...of delay for Writing. Hmm... Turn 54: Caesar and another Unmet enter the Classical Era. Our worker finishes the pasture, and moves to the flood plain for a farm for the capital...or for incense in the desert. Turn 55: Akkad produces a Settler; Settler & 2nd Warrior head SW, finding an injured barb warrior. Turn 56: Archery, start Writing (wanting Trapping and Sailing as well, who says there aren't choices to be made?) Complex situation! The barb warrior is on a hill next to the planned city site. There is a French warrior across the river, and a Roman spearman by the ocean. The Settler moves to the city site, but I guess due to ZOC cannot build. The Babylonian warrior attacks the barb, but doesn't quite kill it. Turn 57: The 1-HP barb captures the Babylonian settler, which is immediately recaptured by the Babylonians, incidentally promoting the warrior. Meanwhile Dur-Kur finishes a Settler and starts another. Spoiler : Turn 58: Nippur founded on the river, starts a Monument. This city will have lots of food but may be short on hammers. Turn 59: A visit from Oda Nobunaga: "I'll be honest with you - I intend to destroy you along with everyone else." How nice. Then from Caesar: "I have been waiting a long time for this day. Now would be a good time to put your affairs in order." Maybe I shouldn't have built that city there... Spoiler : Turn 60: Borsippa founded on Marble. Akkad finishes a Warrior, starts a Bowman, also rushed a Bowman in Akkad. Nippur switches from Monument to Warrior (there may not be much point, since it's Warrior in 19, but it would be Bowman in 35). Babylon will complete its Worker. Borsippa starts a Bowman. Dur-Kur continues a Settler (due in 12). Sold Silver to Hiawatha for 300 and used that to rush a Bowman in Nippur. At least we'll have a bit of an army, with significant firepower. Turn 62: Writing, switch from Trapping to Wheel to get roads. Nicolaus Copernicus born in Babylon, and while it's tempting to start a Golden Age, we'll reserve him for later tech. Babylon also finishes a Worker and starts a Bowman. Turns 63-66: Not much going on. The Romans occasionally show a Spearman, then withdraw it, never coming within range of bowmen or cities. I'm hoping that the Romans will come to me; so far they've shown no desire to do so. No sign of Japanese. "It's quiet. Too quiet." Demographics are odd: Spoiler : 1st in Land and Mfg Goods, last in Population and Approval, middling on Crops and GNP and Literacy. 3rd in Soldiers, and halfway between "best" and "average." Spoiler : Turn 67: Wheel, start Philo toward Education, with Trapping and Sailing pending. Spoiler : Turn 71: Babylon finishes a Bowman and optimistically starts a Library. Turn 72: First shots fired. Bab Warrior crosses the mouth of the river to a hill to draw Roman attention, then the Bowman from Nippur fires on the responding spearman as the warrior fortifies. The Roman attacks the warrior and is thrown back, almost destroyed. Turn 73: The Bab warrior finishes off the spears, then gets shot up by Antium and withdraws to Nippur to heal. A Roman Scout moves into view, in range of two Bowmen. Incense plantation finished outside Nippur. Turn 74: The Bowmen destroy the Scout. Dur-Kur finishes a Settler, starts a Scout (wishing to start a Colosseum). Turn 75: Someone finished the GL and entered the Medieval Era. Yikes! Philosophy finished, start Theology. Turn 76: Founded Sippar on the northern Silver, so now have Silver to sell. Started a Colosseum, a long-term project! Turn 77: Akkad finishes a Bowman and starts starving because Sippar took their oasis to the north. In response, buy the oasis to the south. Start Colosseum. Spoiler : Turn 78: Advance on Antium, putting two Bowmen on the heights, one more opening fire from the west, with warriors on both flanks. Turn 80: Swapped a warrior for a spearman on Turn 79, now took Antium with the other warrior after bombarding with three Bowmen. Try Annexing to pump Settlers, planning to raze and replace with a city directly on the spices NW of Antium. Dur-Kur finishes a Scout, starts a Settler. Turn 81: Babylon finishes Library, starts Colosseum. I can't put two Scientists in the Library unless I want to abandon all production. One of the population has to work on food. Turn 82: First trade route, Babylon to Akkad, and working on leg to Nippur. Spoiler : Turn 83: Signed RA with Napoleon. Borsippa finishes Bowman, starts Monument. Our new Scout approaches Japanese border and finds no approaching units. Curiously enough, one Japanese Warrior appears approaching Antium from the SW. [What's he doing over there?] Antium and its Bowman fire on the warrior, and the Bowman picks up the Barrage I promotion. Spoiler : Turn 84: One wounded warrior was enough for Oda, and he offers 100 gp plus 3 gpt for peace. Fine with me...but what sort of samurai gives up after a single wound? Disgraceful! Meanwhile the Romans have lost several units and a city, but do not sue for peace. I'm tempted to push on to Rome but that would likely further unhinge my attempt at this strategy. Spoiler : Actually it's likely that my attempt is already unhinged. I have diverted too much production to military uses, and worse, I rushed two Bowmen, and that's the equivalent of an alliance with a Maritime. Here's the Strategic View: Spoiler : Turn 85: OK, now the Romans sue, with 150 gp, 5 gpt, and open borders. Works for me. We defer another Policy Nippur is half-way done (7 turns) with a Monument, but there seems to be little reason to complete it. OTOH, it will take 38 turns for a Colosseum or 20 for a Library; since the Library can be completed in finite time, switch to that. Turn 86: Interesting: we now see twice as many Japanese warriors as we saw during the whole war (we see two, in other words). Turn 90: Oda and an Unmet enter the Medieval Era. Am I the only one who has not? Turn 91: We re-up the deal of Silver to Hiawatha, and can now afford a CS alliance. Singapore is Maritime and Friendly; go for it. Turn 92: Trapping. (We spent several turns making a little progress on techs that we do not want from our RA with Napoleon.) Now back to Theology. Singapore wants a road. How nice. Only six tiles from Antium...which is not yet reached by road. Now Open Borders with Napoleon, which could be useful because my scout is down by Orleans. Turn 94: The peace treaty with Japan has expired. Let's see what they have in mind. Turn 95: Babylon finishes the first Colosseum, and starts a Settler. The peace treaty with Rome ends. Turn 96: Dur-Kur produces a Settler, starts a Colosseum (again, 37 turns). I have two more Settlers coming up in Antium and Babylon. I can provoke another war with Japan by building two on the Japanese border, incidentally bringing my first horses in my radius. Spoiler : [Good thing I wasn't trying for a horse rush!] If I plop the third on the Cotton SW of Antium, I'll probably provoke Napoleon as well as Augustus. Pity. Meanwhile, Singapore's gold frees mine for trade, and I sell it to Oda for 200 (the most I could get out of him; he must be grumpy for some reason). That gives me 580gp, so I could get a brief alliance with a Cultured CS, but in five turns I'll need 250 to renew Singapore. Hold off. Turn 98: Theology, and welcome to the Medieval Era. Antium completes a Settler and starts another. Settler and Bowman move SW toward the cotton, only to find a French Settler sitting on the spices next door to the cotton. Spoiler : Turn 99: Now a Roman settler moves onto the cotton! The French settler moves to the coast. Let's see...I could declare war on Rome, enslave his settler as a much-needed worker, and hope the French don't settle so close that I can't get the cotton. Let's try it. Spoiler : Turn 100: The French found Tours on the coast next to the spices. This forestalls my attempt to colonize on the cotton. I can still colonize adjacent, 3 tiles from Tours and 3 tiles from Rome. That would seem to guarantee war with France...not a desirable outcome as I'll be fighting Rome and Japan. So, Turn 100 with only 7 cities, not the 10 I would have wanted, +22 Science, remote from the +50 that might be desirable. One colosseum and one un-staffed library in the entire empire. +9 gold, +1 culture, zero happiness. This looks like a complete failure. Winnable? Yes. Spaceship in less than 300? Not a chance. I suspect that I had lost my way by the time I founded Nippur, back on Turn 58. I would appreciate guidance in where I went wrong.