I am sure there are threads such as this out there, but considering that the search function is not working and the fact that my situation may be different from other such situations, I went with my own post. I am currently trying to make the leap from regent to monarch. I thoroughly dominate on regent from beginning to end, so I want a challenge. It just seems to me that monarch level is a much bigger leap than I had thought. I have kind of wussed out of a few bad starts when I was stuck in the middle of three other civs and suddenly, they all seem to want to attack, despite the fact that I have been nothing but nice to that point. Right now, I am going with the Celts on monarch, and I am on a continent with the Aztecs, Spanish, and the Zulus. I have about 10 or so cities (compared to a high of about 6 or 7 for the Spanish), and have taken the Aztecs down to one city (although they have rebounded by founding one other and taking over a Spanish city). This may sound like a good situation, especially considering I almost have the GL built, but this is after several other attempts that, as I said, I wussed out on. I scored about 2700 on two regent standard maps, and I was hoping for some feedback on my situation. Am I just trying too hard to get a perfect start? Should I just work harder to rough it out and try to get to ToE and finally jump ahead? This may be my first post, but I am a longtime Civ fan, having owned Civ 1 and 2. I played Civ 2 on Emperor level most of the time, finding Deity to just be too much effort. I gave up on Civ 3 for a while (got it in April 2002 and did not really start playing until this summer) because it was so different from Civ 2, and therefore, my old strategies did not work. I have been checking out the forums here at CFC for a while, but as is apparent, this is my first post. I hope it is the first of many. Anyways, sorry if my background is not really on subject with the rest of what I have said, but I would appreciate some feedback on my situation. Thanks everybody.