And onto the end of my game (Noble/Epic): Spoiler : Pretty much stuck to the plan as I outlined above. Finished Literature, and then went for Music (settled the GA in Beijing)>Civil Service (switched to Bureau)>Drama>Machinery (for defense)>Calendar (for resources) >Paper>Education>Liberalism (used the free tech for Nationalism). Spread the three religions as much as possible, and built/whipped 9 Temples for each religion. Beijing, Shanghai, and Nanjing got three Cathedrals each, and a Pavillion. I built Parthenon, Sistine Chapel, and finally Taj in Beijing. I got some more luck and got an event that gave me a free (settled) Great Artist in Beijing. Near the end of my Golden Age in 1390 AD, I switched to Rep/Free Speech/Caste/Pacifism, and cranked up the culture slider. With most of my cities building wealth, I was able to still make a profit at 90%, so I would flip between 90% and 100% as appropriate. I actually culture flipped a couple of Babylonian cities, but liberated them, improving my relationship with Hammurabi even more. I culture flipped a barbarian city as well, which I kept. With Caste, I started running as many artist specialists as I could. This time I used them to build Great Works in Nanjing (mostly) and Shanghai (just two). I also ended up with a stray Great Engineer (which I used for another Golden Age) and a Great Merchant (which I used for a trade mission to keep my culture slider at 100% just a little longer). Both of those came from Shanghai, which I think occurred because the game must have assigned some specialists without me realizing it. Never did end up with a Great Spy, which was OK with me in this game. I finally met everyone else, and while everyone else was annoyed with me (different religion, trading with worst enemies, etc.), no one attacked me. Hammurabi and Isabella ended up with a defensive pact and fought Catherine and Pericles, though. I know I gave two techs to Catherine when she demanded them, and one to Pericles. I did through all this time keep using Guangzhou to pump out units, so I was fairly well defended. Although I was using rep, I fell behind somewhat behind in tech (although I was able to trade for some), but it really did not matter. In 1796: Thoughts: Spoiler : 1. I need to brush up on whipping. BUG helps, but I think I could have won even earlier if I would have finished my Temples quicker and then moved to Caste earlier. 2. That being said, this was my first cultural victory without a Philosophical leader. It is also the first time I can recall going through a whole game without war with an AI. (I did capture one barbarian city by force). I still think I got very lucky with how the early religions played out compared to the other games I read in this thread. 3. I think I will finish up my NC 49 Churchill game, and then maybe it's time to start trying Prince.