I think we are playing different games... I've seen AIs starting in plains and getting DF with just two desert tiles in their capital. That is why I prefer grassland starts with potential for Stone Circles. Also, a bit off-topic, but I just noticed today that after the last patch, AI Carthage is now programmed to get Messenger of the Gods, an otherwise completely ignored pantheon (by both AIs and humans) that gets its full potential only if chosen by Carthage. Thumbs up for Firaxis!