What to do when you are on your island ?


Dec 17, 2015
Hi everyone so I have been playing with this mod occasionally for years now, I am more a casual player than a ''pro'' as my choice of difficulty is prince or king.

So to get back to my topic, something has been bothering me, whenever I start alone, on a big or a small Island I always seem to lag behind other civs for some reason...

So my question is, what must I do when I have an isolated start ?


Jul 3, 2016
While it's highly depends on your civ, if I can dumb it down to your first social policy, pretty much just expand. In this case, Progress tend to be independent because you are just fine without neighbor and focus on expanding like crazy. Authority, kinda the same, just expand until you see city state to demand tribute or conquer before warring another civ. In my experience, comparing yourself with highest score civ is not worth the time because when you are not like, 10 tech or 5 policies behind, it's fine.
While for Tradition, maybe prioritize on scout to meet other civ so that your tourism from Great People kicks off.

*disclaimer: I never play Tradition lol.


Oct 14, 2016
If I begin on a continent by myself I just reroll because it seems boring. But this is how I understand it.

Meeting other civs increases your science in two main ways. The first is that if someone you know has discovered a tech, it's cost is reduced slightly (I think its 2%). This is more significant than it sounds.
The second is trade routes. If they have a tech you don't you will gain some science.

A really important aspect to both of these is that its not dependent on total number of techs, just if they know a tech you don't. If I have unlocked 15 techs, but I never took Bronze or Iron Working, and another civ had only 5 techs including those two, I would still get faster science.

You also lose the opportunity to trade luxuries and things, so being alone will hurt your overall happiness and gold.

To keep up, I would just be really greedy. Build maybe 2 horsemen (they should be enough to handle any barbarians) then be extremely greedy with either progress or tradition. You'll be behind on science when you meet the others, but ideally you should have really good cities because you could spend fewer hammers on military.


Feb 11, 2016
Malaga (Spain)
I don't dislike such starts, but you must focus on seafaring. For once, you don't have to worry about AI attacking you often. Your biggest issue are the barbarians. Whichever policy you take has its own way of dealing with the barbarians. Then, you really need to explore the world and find other civs ASAP. It's one of those key moments for the Great Lighthouse (or being Polynesia, but that's cheating). It will take a while to get you in line with the others, but in my experience they aren't ready to attack you, and when they do, it's too late. You can focus on navy since you only need a small land army for the occasional barbs, meaning that you can be pretty safe from seawards attacks.

Religion-wise, I think it's better to try to found and pick beliefs considering that you are not going to spread easily.


May 25, 2016
Use your strong defensive position to neglect military and focus on infrastructure. If you know it already when you open your first policy, don't pick authority, pick tradition when you have very good city spots, and progress when the land is average (but large enough).

Lagging behind in science is normal and no problem. Focus on getting growth and culture going (and don't forget internal trade routes).
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