I've just started playing again after a "wait for some patches and hope for the best" hiatus. Things seem much better balanced now, but i never really played enough to "get" the mechanics, what's best to build where and when and all that stuff. That I'll figure out in my own good time. The only real question I have at the moment, is why is the "pledge to protect" option not always there when going into a city state screen? Is it because someone has already pledged to protect? More to the point, what's the use of pledging to protect...it seems to be an option for the sake of it, without actually doing anything constructive... Can anyone explain how this works and what it actually does?