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Civilization Wars Guide


The following guide has been composed by X.G.Death3, Hades and DutchWeedLove. For feedback, please post here.

What is Civ Wars?

Civ wars is a team game, where you aim to destroy the enemies 3 capitals by building armies, controlling the map and being more technologically advanced than your opponents.

Game Level 0

The basics

In civilization wars there are 3 lanes, and 3 teams on each team, every player plays one lane, versing another, controlling said lanes is one of the most important elements in the game, one lane will give your team bonuses, whilst taking them away from your enemies, top lane gives your team gold (20, at start), bottom materials and middle boost your food up to 4 units more. The first thing you should aim to do, of course, is setting up an army, undoubtedly, your enemy will do the same. In civilization wars, army is built by setting up spawning camps, the earliest ones you can build are either warrior camps, if you are at middle or bottom, or docks, if you are at top. Aim to get as many as your food limit allows you, if your middle has secured you a food supply, you will be able to finish 9, after that you should start researching (in your capital).

Game Elements

  1. Income: In civilization wars, every 30 seconds you get an amount of gold and materials (wood), decided by what lanes you hold, the highest level of the 3 capitals of your team and the markets you possess, it can be additionally boosted by building certain world wonders.
  2. Army: The main purpose of building up an army is to control the lane you are at, to be able to obtain more income, and stop the enemy team from doing so, this is perhaps the most important elements, specially for the side lanes, top and bottom.
  3. Technology: As the game progresses units can be upgraded, technology makes this possible, as a rule of thumb, once you have 9 camps it is better to research and strengthen your units than mindlessly keep adding, if you do that, you might hold your lane for 5 or 10 minutes, but in the end you will end up with swords against tanks and planes.
    Balancing those 3 elements is perhaps the most important skill for any civilization player.
The role of diverse players/lanes
  • Middle: As middle is the hardest lane to break (it has 4 towers, and both sides can run to defend it quickest), and gives no bonuses at the end of the turn (top gives gold, bottom materials), the player on middle should focus on securing their sides, and once all the players have gotten the extra food middle provides, mid players should tech and outincome the enemy. This is the hardest lane to play, and the game is decided mostly by the players on it, the so-called team leaders.
    The middle player, as he plays on all 3 lanes, is supposed to have the best overview of the situation the team is in, whether winning or losing, and should have an idea when to pull out big moves such as trying to break a lane, and an idea of what the enemy is planning.
  • Sides: As for bottom and top, they should focus on building up army and controlling their lanes, using technology and income only as a way of doing so. They should listen to their team leader (middle) as well, he will know best what to do to win.

Golden Rules

The following rules are merely suggestions and recommendations on how to play the game. Only ENT's official rules are binding.
  • Do Not Build Towers! if you do, you will lose your lane, and become weaker and weaker as time goes on, the best defence is a good attack.
  • Do Not Build Granaries until you have upgraded everything twice! You lose 200 gold building a granary and 125 gold and 45 seconds researching pottery, again, you lose the lane and become weaker as time goes on
  • Build Only 1 Library/University! at income levels of 300, 400 or even 500, you cannot afford to double tech, a second library or university is a waste of gold, you will not tech any faster with it.
  • Do Not Overmarket! If you spend too much gold on incoming, you will lose your lane or the chance to swing it, if you didnt have it to start with, you are giving the enemy team the chance to income more than you are doing right now at a lesser cost.
  • Do Not Bank Too Early! Banking early, same as with overmarketting, will mean that you will lose your lane, costing your team more than 100 gold per 30 seconds.
  • Do not keep too much gold! If you have no bank try to always keep your gold reserves as low as possible, keep them working for you! And plan ahead so you don't need to wait 2 minutes for tech before you can spend that money on troops!
  • If you want a different lane than where your capital is at (1st slot= middle, 2ond = bottom 3rd = top) ASK, first in lobby, if you get no response do it when the game has started.
  • Do NOT tech Leadership as a side unless your middle asks you to!
  • Make sure you are going to use mounted archers if you tech stirrups, or fireships / snipers if you tech guerrilla warfare.
  • Only ONE leader unit per lane people!

Game Levels 5-20

Top Basics

  • Ancient era
Walk north and start building docks (hotkey "D") between the island and the land. It is optimal to try to get 9 docks as soon as possible as that is the amount of docks you should be able to get with all mid lane food circles.
When you do not have any more food, start getting triremes in the bottom front row, after two of them are done start teching formations. As some mid players like you to get some extra Galleys, ask them how many they would like, the standard is 3, get them above the island, if your mid any more than that get some under as well. Now tech for Raiders and queue the other techs too: Pottery and Horseback Riding. Get Writing immediately when these are done. Meanwhile, get up Raiders depending on how many galleys you have made. If you got 4 Galleys, build 2 raiders.
There is a kind of rock paper scissors dynamic on the top lane. Triremes > Galleys > Raiders > Triremes.
However fast Raiders are not effective against Triremes because of their minimum range, and bad stats against junks. So they need some melee units to let them be effective.
When you finish building a Library, start teching for upgrading all your ships, quinquirremes or penteconters first and longboats last. Always leave ships unupgraded before you start teching for the next upgrade (upgrade the last quinquirreme when your conscription is at 50%, this helps keep your money low). Once you have finished with the longboat technology, try to upgrade your capital, sell materials, get a worker and add an extra dock if you need it (make it a penteconter).
Extra notes:
  • Top tends to swing A LOT, it is certainly possible that you will receive some fire on your towers, if you will like you're in trouble, ask mid for extra help. Make sure to repair your towers to full before the wave hits and watch closely if your docks are being attacked.
  • Do not get Dromons, they are no good for you.
  • Target raiders with your towers when they are close enough.
  • If the enemy middle added their top 2 raiders, upgrade your galleys first
  • Medieval era
Construct an University and tech your way up to Metallurgy, starting with Gunpowder. It will enable you to upgrade your Longboats and Penteconters to Caravels. Upgrade what you need least, or in equal amounts to caravel (3 or 4). Construct some Carracks (when Metallurgy is done) before upgrading them all. When you have around 5-6 docks upgraded, start teching for Rifling to make Invulnerables. Be sure to have all your Carracks and Caravels upgraded first. Upgrade 3 or 4 Caravels to Invulnerables. Tech Chemistry and Scientific Method afterwards. Upgrade your remaining Caravels to Frigates and your Carracks to Man-o-Wars (if you have the lane very safe consider banking). You have now completed all techs for an Industrial Capital. Get an Industrial Worker when your Capital is done.
Extra notes:
  • Make sure to keep selling your materials with your Trade Market, or make materials markets if you have free food.
  • If you are being rushed by your opponents it is sometimes very effective to add a Catapult /Siege Cannon (upgrade Catapult) or some Penteconter staggers, ask your mid if he agrees on this.
  • Do not bother getting Guerilla Warfare. Most of the time it isn't worth it if you tech quick enough to Invulnerables.
  • Do not get Pirates, they are no good for you.
  • Industrial era
By this time it should be already clear if you're winning or losing. Build a Laboratory. If you are winning extend your lead by making a Stock Exchange by teching Economics. My personal preference is now to start adding some markets to a very secure lane because of the steep prices of industrial units. Make sure to keep 2000 gold. This will give you a steady extra income! Next off upgrade your frigates to destroyers. Tech for Electricity. Make 3 Submarines and the remaining Destroyers. Keep teching from this point unless you are in trouble. Reach Combustion and advance to the last era (leave flight for the next era). You can upgrade your Man-o-Wars to Dreadnoughts. Upgrade your capital to a Modern Capital and recruit a Modern Worker.
Extra notes:
  • No need to sell your materials! Build some markets with the food that you have!
  • Do not bother teching Biology and Refrigeration.
  • Do not get Privateers, they are no good for you.
Note: If you reached Modern era as a side player and you haven't broken a lane yet, you are in a fucking awesome game and I salute you.
  • Modern era
The Modern era is pretty tense, pushing of lanes becomes even more volatile and your units become much stronger compared to towers than previous eras. Build a Research Institute. Tech Flight at your Laboratory. Tech Radar and rocketry at your Research Institute. This will enable you to upgrade your Submarines and Destroyers to Aegis Cruisers, effective against air. Tech the remaining upgrades. While teching upgrade your Dreadnoughts either to Divebombers Carriers if you need anti-ground, or to Interceptor Carriers, if you need anti-air. Your final unit is the Super Carrier. If you have upgraded all docks and u still haven't won, transition into mass Super Carriers. Start adding Privateer Marquees and upgrade these to Super Carriers. Good luck!
Extra notes:
  • Listen to your mid player and watch carefully since it's possible that when you break your opponents top towers that you help either bot or mid.

Bot Basics

  • Intro
    At start, there are 4 main types of units on the bottom lane, spears/pikes, horsemen, axemen/swordsmen and archers; logically, spears counter horsemen, horsemen axes and axes spear men, whilst archers having the best dps as long as they are shielded from combat, most players these days build 3 melee units (preferably horsemen) and 6 range (usually longbows possibly with some crossbows mixed in), that will be your basic build.
  • Where do I build my warrior camps?
    Just behind the very bottom towers on your side, any more forwards and your camps can get destroyed, more backwards and defence won't be effective.
  • What melee units do I get?
    Counter what your enemy gets, and always have a preference for horses, horses have 17% evasion and do not get debuffed by artillery, making them the preferred tanking units, they however still lose vs spear in 1v1 fights. Try not to do too many spears at start (more than 2), horsemen can upgrade into mounted archers, if enemy sees you do too many spears he will swap all his horses to range and put a sword in front, making your spears virtually useless.
  • To Savage or not to Savage, that is the question
    If you control bottom, your warrior camps can be upgraded to savage warriors, those are overall more powerful and have splash damage, in small amounts 2 warriors beat 1 savage, but in mass fights 1 savage is on average better than 2 warriors. The main drawback to savage warriors is their limited choices for upgrading, you can only upgrade them to longbows or swords, and it is always better to use the food from middle while you can than use your precious early gold for upgrading camps. Conclusion: Once you reach 9 camps, savages will secure the lane for you, at the cost of flexibility, if you are planning on doing 6 longbows and no swords 6 savages should be your limit.
  • I am past that stage, what now?
    Bottom diversifies here, but I will write a quick reference guide: Grenadiers should be your default range units, thanks to their splash damage they are really effective against clustered enemies (so much so, you should aim for skipping muskets, most of the time), if you have enough melee and horsemen, dragoons are really good as well (If your enemy has mounted archers, yell to your mid to help you take and hold bottom from minute 21, if you hold it they wont be able to go dragoon and you will be fucking them as hard as you can :D); to counter them, get some riflemen and upgrade them into snipers. If your enemy has little or no cavalry, cutter saints are preferred to macemen (splash damage ftw). Cavalry and Fusiliers should be your main tanks, together with staggers (covered later on), cavalry is cheaper, and takes less technologies, but fusiliers are more resistant. Once you are past that stage, upgrade some grenadiers and all your tanking units into machinegunners, and even later start upgrading machinegunners to tanks and airplanes (do not go all tanks as they cannot target air), the rest will be special units such as mech infantry (polivalent armoured infantry), commandos (good vs tanks) or stingers (good vs aircraft).

Mid starter guide and openings

As the middle player your main objective is to give your team the highest income and technological advantage possible, getting your side lanes translates into gold, which in turn translates into even more gold and being able to research faster than the other team, therefore the main mid objective is to help your sides get their lanes and outincome your opponent. As alter has written this can also be done by not helping your sides and keeping one stable market lane, those are all different strategies you need to consider. Technology and income are a much bigger focus when playing on middle, and you should be always the person with the highest income on your team and also the one most advanced technologically.
  • The importance of early lanes
    The first few ticks the control of the middle lane is very important, if you fail to control it your sides will have 3 less food than your enemy, and will end up losing their lanes if you do not help them enough, controlling mid is a big advantage early on, specially from 2.00 forwards (at 1.30 your sides have enough gold to use 11 food, at 2.00 13 and at 2.30 14).
    Top is also very important, giving that early extra gold, to give you an example, controlling the whole of top until 2.30 will mean that your sides will have 160 gold left after having gotten hopefully all the food from middle, meaning they can start researching in their capitals, but if you have earned less than 25 gold from top the first 3 ticks, they will not be able to (a technology costs 125 gold), and this will delay their upgrading of camps by a whole 30 seconds. Just 3 ticks controlling top makes a big difference in lane control.
    Bottom does not provide this gold bonus, it however allows you and your bottom player to upgrade your warriors to fierce savages if controlled, those fearsome splash damage warriors are great for getting and controlling middle against a mass of weak warriors, and are awesome too for holding bottom lane for quite a long time, after that you will have plenty of materials to use or sell.
  • Build limits and how to help side players
    The build limit is a restriction on how much you can help your side lanes, this way if a team wants to break a lane by pushing it very hard, it can not do so for too long and its income will be penalized. Build limit rises as you upgrade your capital, allies give you point or you research it in your capital. Only spawns count towards the limit, Wonders do not.
    As wonders do not count towards the build limit they are an obvious choice early on, when you have a build limit of 3 buildings, this is specially true for the top lane, with most middle players adding lighthouse on their sea as soon as they can.
    Leaders are also a very good addition to your allies (warlords/generals and flagships, you will save them the expense of teching leadership, and are a very strong unit that only takes one spawn (they take less of your build limit than building another 2 units of equal strength), ballistas are a nice addition as well, they give a nice debuff which will help your allies, and are usually needed before your bottom can even get the technology to make them.
  • Openings and wonders
    When the game begins, there are around 5 or 6 things you can invest your money on as the middle player.
1. Technology: If you start this right away it will allow you to build wonders that require technology faster, or at least have a chance of building them, the most notable example of this is the great lighthouse, a good wonder to support your top player, and leonardo's workshop, usually built on the bottom lane, but not rare at the middle one either. Most players start researching, the main drawback of this start is that you do not have enough gold to afford 3 warrior camps, you will need to stop at 2.
2 / 3 /4 Investing in warrior camps or docks on top, middle or bottom: Each lane has its own advantages, usually players start by spending all their money on mid, or a mixture of middle, top and research.
5. Making the obelisk wonder: A great way to get more income at early game, but I wouldn't suggest this start, it it will most probably mean you lose both middle and top lanes, and bottom will only follow, wait at least until your sides have full food.
6. Towering middle: Rush your worker forwards, at the 30 seconds mark, start a technology, build a warrior camp before the big middle point on the food lane and make a tower on the hill, this will prevent their middle from getting food early. You need quite a bit of practice to pull it out correctly, counter it by either breaking the tower (reactivating 4 camps at middle when he least expects it) Or pushing your side lanes.
  • Balancing the 3 elements
Quick reminder, 3 elements are: Army, Income and Technology. The amount you should invest in each one depends greatly on which lane you play, and your enemies strategies, this is just a compilation of "rules of thumb".
  1. Army: As long as the lane you are playing at is not secure (you haven't got it or it is swinging) you should invest in troops, waiting the least amount possible for research (always leave 1 unit that you could upgrade more before starting a research, technologies take more or less 1 minute to complete (they start at 45 seconds and increase as you research on), so always have 1 camp without upgrading when you start researching the technology (upgrade it when tech is halfway done), this way you keep minimal gold reserves.
  2. Technology: Aim to be as technologically advanced as your enemy, or, at least have enough tech to keep your lane and counter whatever he is doing, for example, if he gets airplanes you will need at least machinegunners to hit air targets.
  3. Income: You should always income the exact amount you can afford to, that is to say, if you have more gold than your enemy, or can keep the lane with less gold (without a technology or having a good counter build), be careful to not overmarket, but not incoming at all is a lousy decision too. Usually you won't need all the materials you get from bottom, sell the ones you can't afford to use in markets.
  • Rushing lanes
    Are you outincomed and outteched? Does it look like your sides will never push?
    Your only option in this case is a rush, try to destroy the enemies' capitals by concentrating the entire firepower of your team on one lane, hoping to break their towers before they even notice what is going on, and destroy at least 2 capitals.
    Basics are easy, if you rush top, bottom deactivates everything and masses siege units top, and middle helps as much as he can, all players must spend all the gold they have, deactivate all markets, sell all materials and sell all the camps on the opposite lane for a chance of it to work against good players, the lane you are not rushing will probably break, but that's ok, they will have only 1 player pushing there and it is unlikely they will break your capitals, and almost impossible they break them faster than you break theirs, at least with one player.
    When rushing you should consider to add normal units to counter the units they will build in response to you trying to break their lane, if you are massing fire raiders, you can expect them to mass spears, so make a couple swords to go in front.
    Watch your build limits! If your teammates cross their build limits, give them from yours. If you do, upgrade your build limit, it is a lot of income you lose if you dont.
    Ideally, the lane you rush should be swinging towards your towers, whilst the other one you should be swinging towards theirs, that way they will take longer to realize what is going on on the lane you are not rushing (20 sec to 1 minute more with no defense at top, possibly), and the lane you rush will stack a lot.
    Rushes are all in moves, if you rush and it doesnt work you might as well forfeit, you will have lost towers at the opposite lane, 25% of gold of the destroyed camps, you will have crossed build limits, losing income, spent gold on upgrading build limits and deactivated all your markets and lost all income. Rushes cost less to defend than to pull off, that is partly why they are so risky
  • Defending against rushes
    The most important part about defending is spotting the rushes early, and if you spot anything suspicious, (someone deactivating their camps, suddenly big upgrade, suspicious build or plenty camps added to a lane very quickly, just to name a few) yell like hell, you cant defend a rush alone.
    If spotted early rushes are actually quite easy to defend, as players on the other team will focus on siege units, whilst you can focus on unit countering tactics. Longbows are a good idea, they stay out of combat whilst providing a steady flow of dps, they will make your towers and melee units suffer all the damage, but after a couple of ticks you should have a large enough clusterfuck of archers to push back the lane, sometimes entirely for a good amount of time. If they build mounted raiders go horses for tanking and spears / longbows for dps, if they carrack rush, get invulnerables and a siege cannon or catapult on top, if longboats, penteconters, it is all pretty straightforward, and it actually doesn't matter what you add so much as long as you add something useful.

Game Levels 20+

Crossbows, Mounted Raiders and staggers

  • Ranged Units
    Longbows are a great and safe choice for bottom, but if you really want to outplay your opponent you need to take into account your other 2 range options, crossbows require more teching, while mounted raiders cost an extra 200 gold in the long run, and if you dont control bottom after you tech gunpowder, you can be in real trouble, however they do have quite some nice advantages.
    The main advantage of crossbows is their buffed health (+~ 150, 50%), extra armor (+2) and better armor type (heavy instead of light). They also have no minimum range, making them quite useful at middle, where a longbow needs to run away from an opponent to shoot it, a crossbow can stand its ground, although they do have shorter range. Crossbows are great tankers against enemy range units and spears, they even die slower to shock damage than longbows; but because of their low firing speed and short range they are very vulnerable to big clusters of enemies, their weakness is getting overrun by a lot of melee, specially horses and swords, they are also somewhat more vulnerable to splash damage if you build a lot of them, as they tend to stick together quite closely. All in all though, 2 crossbows beat 3 longbows, if no melee units are involved, and they cost the same. Leaving a late crossbow is also a good idea, it will protect your grenadiers from quite some splash damage.
    Mounted raiders are a little bit of a paradox, they are good to get if the enemy gets too little spears or too many, let me explain. Because of the armor type of ponies, they are really resistant to shock, making them a very useful option when your enemy has no spears, and if the enemy has many spears, you want to get your horses away from their melee and into the back, which you can do by making them ranged. The main advantages of ponies are their higher dps (highest for ranged units), fast attack speed, bonus health (+50), armor (+1) and resistance to ballista debuff. I would dare say the best ranged units on bottom lane, problem is if you do not control bottom lane you cannot upgrade them to dragoons, so if you see your enemy making horse archers ask middle for help and control bottom from 20 minutes until he gets machineguns.
  • Staggers
    Staggers are low level camps that arrive to the main lines after your main hit force, and act as a shield for your ranged units, usually peasants are added along the left middle to bottom line, if you add 4 to 5 peasant camps at different intervals you should be good to go and have a nicely staggered lane. People usually stagger to avoid splash damage, because peasants come slowly they are not vulnerable to the main splash damage of the first couple grenadier throws, making them extremely useful against them. You can also use horses to stagger or put a warrior just in front of your main force, so your troops avoid the first round of grenadier fire, this is actually a quite good strategy and not many players use it.

Wonder Analysis

  • Ancient Wonders
  • Obelisk: Great, specially if you dont hold bottom, if you deactivate it it pays in around 5 minutes (at +20 gold per tick). Gives you 2 food, savage and income, (200+500+20 per 30 seconds) for 580 gold. Deactivates for 200g and 1% elite chance. Do not build it right at the start, you do not need the food it gives you, you lose 30 seconds of tech and you need to add 1 wonder builder to its original cost (75 + 1 food).
  • Lighthouse: I have heard some people argue that it is the best wonder in game, it pretty much guarantees top for at least 10 minutes. Gives you a galley, raider and trirreme (600+600+600), for 1125 g, and doesn't waste your building limit. Deactivates for 400g and 3.3% leader chance. Most players in public games rush this wonder, although 2 fast longboats with top going 4 or 5 galley can beat it. If you are against a middle that adds a lot of docks on his top side, use lighthouse to control lane swings.
  • Gardens/Colossus/Zeus: Excellent if you have 1 lane very safe and are confident your enemy cannot push it back, and intend to market it. Do not make those before you have at least 4 markets of a lane though, and make sure your enemy cannot push it with the 750g advantage he just got.
  • Great Wall: If your sides are too bad or you dont feel like fighting all lanes you can try to make this one on middle lane, just so your team can market it hard, otherwhise it is just a strong tower, good before metallurgy. Be sure you get gardens fast if you put your wall on middle, and make sure it is well defended. Tower before walling is a good idea too, as your enemy will try to get a tower up next to your workers before you can finish your wonder.
  • Medieval Wonders
    Leonardo's Workshop: University + a nice ballista + 4 food! Just the university and ballista pay for the wonder, and being able to research machinery before you finish education can be quite nice if you are trying to catch up on technology. Deactivates for 200 gold and 1.5% leader chance. Get it if you can, but make sure your top control is not compromised if you do.
    Bazaar: Great if you are holding more than just 1 lane, or all lanes in general are swingy. Gives a lot of gold and is very powerful if you do not overmarket. Get it after you have 6 markets or more and again, be careful you do not do it too soon.
    East Zipang Trading Company: Great asset, gives more gold than a regular bank on average, but costs less, make sure you get this one if you are holding as much as only 3 nodes. The more you hold the more you get so push those lanes hard.
    Cathedral: Awesome if you have the extra cash to get it, its aura its better than a warlord's, but only do get it if you have the extra cash to spend.
    Sun Tzus War academy: It is good for pushing against a massed force on mid (or help a noob bottom teammate), but then again why would you push against a massed force on mid, just outmarket your opponent in a different way. If your opponent doesnt have enough manpower on the lane he can just deactivate everything and leave you with 1.7k less for holding side lanes, if he has too much you will find it hard to push. The textbook counter to this wonder is to make the great wall on middle lane, you spend little gold more, and completely negate its effects, unless the other side manages to break your wall. In short the power it provides is good, but the money it costs can be spent in better ways and the counter to this wonder is frustratingly easy for good players. If you arent up against a good opponent and have plenty advantage, feel free to push middle or bottom with this wonder. Deactivates for 400g and 3.5% elite chance.
    Iron Works: Although it does give you quite a lot of firepower for a reasonable price (3600 + 2 food for 2400), it is generally not worth adding to a lane, mainly because of the siege cannon, unless you have either incredible amounts of gold or want to rush. Deactivates for 400g 5.2% ec
    Magellan's expedition: This one is good, but adding a couple submarines fast to top lane is both cheaper and more effective. Deactivates for 400g 5.8% ec
    Mausoleum: Overpriced, clearly. if you treat a warlord as a sword and a half, its aura only costs 300 gold, and more importantly it is upgradeable. Mausolem costs 1400, giving you an aura on middle lane that you do not need, and it can't be upgraded. Don't get this one, at least not in the early game; if it is late enough for the fighting power of a general to be basically 0 and +2 armor to not give a significant increase in durability, you might consider deactivating both your generals at the side lanes and doing maus for a quick 2k cash injection. Only do it if your bottom player has at least tanks though.
  • Industrial and Modern Wonders
  • Transcontinental railroad: Very good aura, low price, get this one as soon as you can.
  • Panama Canal / General Mills / Hoover Dam: Usually it is very late in the game when you can get these wonders, and they are very expensive, unless your sides have whored income and you want the game to last an hour and a half, dont get those.
  • Rock and Roll: Good, but be sure you have enough gold to defend and hold your lanes, specially powerful if you have cathedral with bonus armor and damage.
  • Big Ben: Gold could be better spent, be careful with submarines and divebombers on the lane if you get this. Too expensive. Deactivates for 400g 8.6% ec
  • Interstate Superhighways: This wonder pretty much guarantees bottom, very good value for the tank, 50 income and a railway station (very helpful if you didnt get the transcontinental railroad) Deactivates for 200g 6.4% ec
  • Statue of Liberty: This one is very nice, the price is low and its power is VERY strong, specially when you make it cast heal manually on your most important units, like a heavy tank on bottom or a striker on top.
  • Maginot Line: Strong cheap tower, good for defending against rushes, blocking middle lane, or stealing it from enemies so they cant defend.
  • Eiffel Tower: Weak bunker with a real strong aura, makes your units a lot stronger, nice for defending and is cheaper than maginot.
  • Manhattan project: If you went -nukes mode this one is a very good one, otherwhise you cannot even build it so dont even bother with its technologies.

Wall on middle

The main idea behind this strategy is to give your teammates and yourself a constant market lane while sometimes swinging the side lanes of the opponent. You will build the great wall on the hill closer to the opponents capitals on the middle lane, leaving them with only 1 node.
Why on the hill? Ranged units have a percentage chance to miss units that are on top of hills, if you set up your defence there you have quite the advantage, if you set it more forwards it would be easy to break, their units will reach faster your wall and stack easier, and if you decide to build the great wall in front of the middle node, you will be the one shooting uphill.
Start by activating everything you have on your middle lane, it is good if you overpower your opponent, but not completely necessary. You will sneak your workers past the fight of middle, and start building your great wall on the hill. If your enemy is smart he will have rushed with his workers to his hill as soon as he saw yours, he will try to get up a tower while you are building your wall to snipe your workers, this is why you should attempt to hide them and hope for the surprise element, if you have it, there is a good chance you wont need a tower to protect your workers, otherwhise dont start building the wonder right away but add a tower first instead.
Building the great wall costs a great deal of gold (if you build it with more workers more so, and the more damaged it gets the more it costs), so be prepared to lose your sides for quite a while, be careful with this, the enemy can try to outmarket you as he will have 6 nodes and you only 3, at least just after you finished the wall.
Remember to build hanging gardens as soon as you can, there is nothing more frustrating than your enemy stealing them when you have them 80% completed. This is actually a great counter to your great wall, steal hanging gardens, go bazaar and hold your sides, your enemy will have less income, gold, and no materials to market harder than you. But do not let him keep the entire middle lane for longer than 20 minutes, his wall will have paid off by then.
Another counter that works against some players is to do a delayed camp, one that goes first up to your boats and then below to middle lane, if you do it right your enemy will be holding 2 nodes instead of 3 every tick. This is really easy to counter though, so dont expect to steal 15 minutes of income with it.

Markets, Bank, And Opportunity costs

The concept of Opportunity costs simply means that depending on how you can use your resources, the costs of your choices will be different.
For example, it seems rather obvious that a materials market is relatively more expensive if you have to buy the materials needed to make it and relatively cheaper if the best thing you can do with your spare materials is sell them.
What I am getting at is even though the fixed costs of all the markets are the same, the real costs vary depending on the situation. If you are holding middle lane, got your medieval capital and killed your very first worker for extra food, the cheapest markets you can get right now are food markets, and then probably materials ones; since you have free food, and probably spare materials.
This is why I hardly ever make more than 1 top (or food), market early as a side, early on in the game 100 gold more or less on your lane has a lot of a bigger impact than later on, trade markets are more expensive relative to materials markets.
You actually use this concept all the time, if you have 1 materials market active and 1 trade inactive, but you are keeping top lane and have 15/15 food, you will swap, the opportunity cost of having a materials market active is that you cannot have your trade one active at the same time, and that is greater than its benefits.
Now, even though the most expensive markets in these terms are trade markets, they are also the most flexible, deactivating a food market only gets you 75% of the gold and materials you used, but not that granary you needed to build; and deactivating materials ones means you need to go through the 0.75 exchange rate of materials to gold to actually be able to retrieve their cost. Because of this, trade markets are possibly the only ones that pay to be deactivated (even if you do not use food) when you havent got top lane to fill your bank.
Markets pay more or less from 4 to 12 ticks, depending on the resources you used to build them, and assuming an average of 11-12 gold per tick. Trade markets deactivate for 112g 37m 1f > in gold terms 139g - 258g (depending on if you sell or use materials and use food for something else)
  • Food markets 37g 37m 2f > 64 - 264
  • Mats markets 37g 97m 1f > 109g - 258g
The cost of markets can be approximated to 300g, so in the best of cases, they pay off in less than 5 ticks (at +18g/tick), that is if you use all the materials and food they give you but a more realistic estimate would be from 7 to 11 ticks.
For a bank is much easier to work out
375 banking + 100 food + 500 bank + 1000 reserves = 1975 cost, you can deactivate it for 1000, 1975 - 1000 = 975 real cost
975 / 100 = 9.75
10 ticks payoff period if you keep above the 1k mark
For a stock exchange
600 + 100 + 1000 +2000 = 3700 cost, 1700 real cost
1700/250 = 6.8
7 ticks
And both bank and stock exchange dont require your team to hold any nodes for the income, and you can have "half" of them deactivated, they are much more flexible than markets. So I should bank as soon as I can? No, no, no no and No, screw you. If you spend 1975 as soon as you can you will lose your lane and your team will be losing 3 times as much as what you make with your silly bank. but the same applies to marketting, do not make 50 markets just to lose your lane, first keep the lane, then market with your extra gold.

Whole team strategies

Pony Rush

  • Set-up: Make sure you have good communication with all allies. A good rush can be devasted by not having coordination. Everyone must be on board and willing to go all in. If anyone holds back, the enemy can defend with ease.
The best rush is the one most disguised. Surprise wins games. Unfortunately, the Pony Rush has a huge tell right from the first tick. There are ways to sell it better, but this is not a guide on how to sell a rush, but how to complete one.
  • Steps: Everyone starts first tick by queueing 2 techs at their capital and building 2 spawns. If you are middle, you can make them at top to hopefully win the lane or at least make it seem more legit. Bottom and top try to get 9 spawns as soon as possible, but always tech. You MUST NOT STOP teching. Same goes for middle, but middle must have the middle lane long enough for allies to get 9 spawns. Top and bottom should upgrade a few units. Bottom should make 2 axes and entice the enemy to making horses. After writing is complete, top and middle queue Stirrups while bottom queues Iron Working. At 6 minutes, top and middle should start constructing camps on bottom. I prefer to make them below and behind the bottom tower as this will tend to focus all units on the enemy bottom tower when your force arrives. However, if the enemy has your lane pushed on bottom, build the camps out of sight. MAKE SURE TO DEACTIVATE THE CAMPS once they complete! At 6:30 reactive them and upgrade top and mid camps to horses, then deactivate them before 7:00. After the 7:00 tick, activate and upgrade to mounted archer as many as you can (3 each) and start making a fourth each. Bottom at 7:00 should make 3 swords and then begin on making the rest of his force into swords or knights as needed.
That's it. If done correctly, the enemy will know you are up to something fishy as top hasn't pushed hard recently (if you can manage to swing top a few times before 7:00, they will have less ideas about your plans). If bottom lane is at your side when the rush starts, you will have a much higher chance of succeeding than if you have bottom pushed to their towers. If the enemy fights on bottom lane, you have a much higher chance of success as well.
Warning: Rushes are "All-in" moves. Once attempted, there is no turning back. You cannot recover and over market an enemy. Once you decide on a rush, you and your allies must dedicate to it. It is do or die.

Sun Tzu & Catapult Rush

  • Preface: A quick but very potent rush to end the game quickly.
  • Set-up: It is very important that you are clear with your allies about this rush. Make sure to disguise it for as long as possible. When you rush you go all in.
  • Steps: Start as middle, by making two camps middle and teching. Top and bot play standard for now. Make sure to keep teching and ensure your sides both have maxed (9 camps/docks). Ideally your bot wants 4 longbows and 5 melee for this rush to work, telling your bot to go for this composition is a good move. Make sure that you do not construct any wonders like the Obelisk or the Lighthouse, they will not be beneficial to your rush. Top can upgrade a few docks and only needs to tech stirrups. When you start teching with your library tech masonry, feudalism, currency, iron working, leadership and mathematics. Get around 4 or 5 workers. When leadership is done, deactivate your units middle and start constructing the Sun Tzu War Academy. If the enemy has pushed the bot lane to your towers, be sure to build it out of sight. If you have more than 350 materials it is beneficial to build a Trade Market and sell the 300 materials for extra gold. When your Sun Tzu War Academy is around 50%, let your top lane deac his lane and go all-in bot with Mounted Raiders. If you have teched non-stop your top should deac his docks at 10:31. When your Sun Tzu is done, add catapults. Make sure to deactivate your units mid or keep one camp for the first food circle. If your top lane got wiped very quickly it might be a good idea to tech construction. Normally this isn't a necessity. Keep adding bot and watch top for big longboat stacks. If you aren't going for this strategy it is possible into transition to this a bit later, however it will be less potent. I've added a replay file with this link so you can see this rush in action. Good luck!