TLDR: I hate the new secret socities game mode as there is only one worth taking. It's a real waste of something that could of been good. I haven't seen anyone else's comments on these Secret Socities; I kept a clear mind up to the release of the DLC and these all thoughts and opinions are based on my own experiances only, and not anyone elses. I've already played 3 multiplayer games and 3 singleplayer games all on Epic speed, Huge maps as both Teddies, new Catherine and Ethiopia. The Alchemists give you access to Ley Lines, which you only seem to get 1 next to everyone's capital and then a random cluster of 7. But would you risk going down the Alchemists path if you knew you were only ever going to get 1, maybe 2 ley lines in your whole empire? (To get the second you have to be lucky to be near an unocupied one or take someone's capital giving you -5 Diplomatic favour and grevances.) Or you can save scum to see if you magically have a cluster like this near you. With only the University replacement actually giving you any empire-wide benefit to you, this Alchemists are pointless to me. The Vampires as you only get 1-4 vampire units and 2-4 castle buildings. Sure they seem pretty cool but the vampires are more irritating to baby-sit then recon-units getting them to the level-3 ambush promotion. And sure the Vampire Castles can give you some really nice yeilds, but that's the only real benefit to playing Vampires for me, the castle... The Owls of Minerva never seem to spawn for me, but in the few games they do, they give you 2 nice card slots, some envoys, a couple more trade routes and some defensive bonuses to spies which I think are quite nice and tame but balanced! Not too bad; The final pormotion is pointless as my games are always over before the atomic era (I only persue science or culture victories) so I never get any use out of it; but it's a nice sum of yeild but not too outragious... The Voidsingers however... This is the only socity worth taking; you get +4 faith in every city which at the begining of the game is king. You can buy settlers, builders and traders so quickly; and settling those new cities with your faith allows you to build more obelisks for even more faith, to buy even more settlers to build more oblelisks to buy even more settlers and... well you get the idea. Combine that with priotising holy sites and a decent faith-based pantheon and you have so much faith rolling in. Just keep doing that for 2 eras and in the Medieval era you then also can convert all of that faith into science, culture and gold to go ontop of your existing commerical hubs, harbours, theater squares and campuses giving you so many yeilds there is no reason to continue the game. It's just a big snowball and no one can catch up to you with any other society. And then 2 eras later you can then get free relics for even more faith, and can flip cities for an added bonus, and then 2 eras later (if, again, you ever make it to the Atomic era) you can generate even more faith and therefore every other yield... Has no one else seen how broken this is? It's an instant win... All you need to do is get 1 tribal village and 1 golden age and you've won the game. I won't ever be playing with Secret Societies on again.