Praxis is some fancy Greek word that means something like “the process of enacting a skill” or “putting the theory into practice.” It’s a mediocre pun. Anyways, I took my time rolling starts with Basil today (only to realize he has no bias) and ended up playing through one where I was in the end of a continent, with Sweden and then Norway through them as the only direction to go. A few things... getting a religion going isn’t hard, but getting certain beliefs is pretty difficult on high difficulty because the AI LOVES feed the world and choral music. They don’t seem as fanatical about crusade though. The hippodrome ended up being the star of the show- not only can you make some nice little configurations to drop theater squares around later, but they are pretty cheap and a small city can push one out in about 10-15 turns in the classical/medieval. You really want to preplace them but hold off until Divine Right though, unless you have lots of money and iron on hand to upgrade the chariots. Yes, you need iron to upgrade Hippo chariots to Tagma. You also need iron to heal Hippo Tagmas. Once you do have tagma, though, they are quite handy units. The leader ability is absolutely brutal. A city with walls at musket strength will still fall to 3 tagma in ~2 turns if you have crusade. The only thing that stops them is Pike and shot and especially those cursed Caroleans. I found myself sweeping through Sweden, taking captured cities and building new hippodromes, as a fairly unstoppable juggernaut. And you can just spend 600 gold to buy arenas to poof reinforcements into existence. Dromons are the early game Sea Kings. With 2 range, their ability to operate on the shore is greatly improved and they can easily generate promotions. They also benefit from Taxis, and with the inherent resistance to ranged attacks, they make great crossbow slayers. I found the conversion from kills ability to be really strong- especially for border wars. I started with 1 Swedish border town converted, and just fighting in the outer cities ended up converting all her cities. (Once a few concert, they create pressure, etc.) Overall you do seem to have to put work in- setting up a holy city, and timing divine right and hippos - but the payoff is big. You absolutely want crusade, okay? How did your games go? What do you think Basil’s start bias should be?