At the moment the AI does not have to conquer a city first only the Player. I'll have to program the AI to do that at a later date. Civs who do not start on water though do however gain immigrants faster as they do not have to "sail to europe" each time to pick up cargo so there is a little balance there. This mod is huge and I have to tackle aspects of it one at a time. Right now I am focused on the land starting European Civs but I hope to flesh out the rest of them in the future.