Started 3 more mostly-random DG games since the Russian game above. In the first, as the Koreans, I got stomped by Hittite Axes ~50T in (3 towns founded, 2 lost, including Seoul). In the second, as the Egyptians, I got left behind. Although I expanded slightly better than Korea (due to a Despotic GA ) I had no freshwater, and the tech-pace was crazy: the Hittites — again! — got Muskets and then Cavs before I got Knights; and Carthage was already well into the Industrial by that point, so I gave up. Current game is as the Ottomans. Got lots of lovely rivers round my start point, and lots of Forest (on Grassland) to chop into buildings, but only 1 Spice resource (out on the fringe, controlled by a second-ringer) and no StratRes. The Dutch got Mapmaking (from a Hut?) ridiculously early and forward-Settled (what turned out to be) an Iron-Hill on the far side of my territory from theirs — but my first Archer-assault was a failure, because by the time I'd got them built and into position, there were already 3-4 Spears in there. Using only Axes+Spears+Archers, I've survived 2 wars without losing any towns so far: vs. Archers+Swords and recently Pikes+Maces (the second also vs. a Franco-Dutch alliance!), but my research has been severely hampered by missing the Philo-sling (again), and getting declared on just as I was about to finish Republic the hard way (I got immediate WW when I switched govs). I'm now doing Maths, but my neighbours are well into the Medieval, so the next war will likely kill me unless I can finally buy some Iron (d'ja fink Willy'll sell me some...?), and/or topple the Dutch Iron-town (currently Pop7, and guarded by a SMerc and FreeWalls...).