Having played a few games now, it seems like there should be greater expansion - or at least conquering - penalties. I've played games where I have militarily snowballed AIs, capturing 6-7 cities in quick succession (quickly scoring points victories), and then games where AIs military snowballed other AIs quickly (quickly scoring points victories). There should be some kind of things that stop the snowballing. There's a happiness hit to conquered cities but that's not enough of a deterrent. Some suggestions include: - Reducing culture of conquered cities back to Weak (since you are a totally new culture), thus reducing point value of new cities (or at least decreasing culture one level), + penalty to culture accumulation for a short time - The occasional creation of rebel units in conquered cities (over X turns), or creation of rebel units when happiness is being lost at -5 or more - Other civs declaring war on the person who is snowballing (this is one of the greatest deterrent yet since multiple wars = death if the civs are close to you), or at least warning you to stop conquering cities, or at least holding increasingly negative opinions (for X years) for every city you conquer - This may be too complicated , but your military units starting getting "exhaustion" / "war weariness" penalties for every city you conquer (which reduces over time), while each military unit gets "resistance" boosts everytime a city is taken (which reduces over time) - More random events associated with taking cities, such as families making demands (however, in the olden days families probably liked it when you conquered other cities), or any number of negative random events associated with overextending in history - upkeep in conquered cities could be substantially higher than normal, with upkeep increasing dramatically for each new conquered city These reins may slow down conquering snowballs.