I wanted to post a bit of an update. I was able to replicate a game close to the OP's at a friend's the other night. Having never played-out many Salt starts in my day I don't think I ever appreciated how brutally overpowered the resource is. I had 3 Salts in my main and 3 in my first expansion and even settled on 2 natural wonders and got the +4 faith from natural wonders pantheon. One of the natural wonders produced pure faith (+6 or something) and the other one was a mountain that provided culture, gold and I think 2 faith. As such my first 2 cities has a kajillion food + production in addition to some insane faith output. I was basically able to hard build any Wonder that I wanted so I was easily able to get Pyramids, Oracle, CI, Cistine, etc. Never tried for Hagia but it was gone way too fast anyways. Anyways, I was even able to produce CI in my EXPANSION, not even my Cap, given how many hammers it had from working 3 Salts, 2 Sheep (+ Durakhal Stables) and a Stone. Anyways, all I can say is that Salt is the key to the OP's success in the first screenshot. You literally cannot lose if you start with an abundance of it. The fact that it grants high levels of production and food at the early stages of the game is absurd and it needs to be nerfed asap. I had my Universities building or bought pre-turn 100 and public schools were not far behind. My NY came in around turn 80 and it took less than 10 turns to build (I think it was 7). I never really appreciated how stupidly OP Salt is but I mean it accelerates your entire game by 15-20 turns or something ridiculous. Anyways, we never finished the game because it was a foregone conclusion that I would win. It was 2 of us + Deity comps on a Standard sized Continents map at Standard speed. No teams or anything and we didn't do any trading pre-turn 150 or something (I was on a different Continent than him). All I'm saying here is that I didn't use the human player to cheese the game or somehow influence my early game success. With any luck I I can load up a save/autosave and post an SS around turn 150 to provide a comparison. Not sure though since I don't know what autosave options my friend uses. If I ever get a Salt start in my solo games that I'll do in a bit I'll try and post a comparison SS.