Well, that had to wait until cavalry! I discovered military tradition in 740AD and upgraded 9 knights. I totally forgot about the empty army, though... War was declared in 800AD. Alexandria was the first target, although I had to attack it across a river due to a wicked river layout.
I killed a few knights, but otherwise had to fight spears only. And although I could have pressed on if I had dedicated my economy to war, I made peace again now that my borders were straight again. Being not allowed to mine took its toll now: I still had much infrastructure to build.
I entered the industrial era in 930AD, and starving Egyptian scientists helped to shave off a turn which I find rather silly. My high-food size 12-cities had hired several scientists as well, I had prioritized libraries and universities everywhere. Although the science building were not so helpful as in normal games, they still were needed if you wanted to research all by yourself. But I was not the first to become industrial! Rome was. Caesar was in a very impressive 4 turn research mode at the moment, skipping all optional techs and beating me to every tech by two or three turns.
I finally traded for a world map in 1010AD.
I had thought about what government to choose for this game, whether I should remain in monarchy the whole game, or maybe switch to fascism later on which some say is the improved communism of C3C. But having played RBC10, I now beelined to...communism! I didn't have many cities due to my minimize-overlap approach, but my land area was quite large, so I wanted to try out communism under these circumstances. I hope somebody else will use fascism for a comparison! I revolted in 1130AD, and compared to monarchy, both research speed and income increased slightly. But that would improve more later, when the SPHQ would be finished! (By the way, my forbidden palace was located in Alesia)
Next was steam power, which Rome discovered two turns before me, then industrialism which Rome got on the same turn as me. Argh! Couldn't Caesar research something different so we could trade and speed up the tech pace a bit?!? Next up was espionage and the SPHQ in Tolosa, a city bordering Carthage with a very good shield potential (well, very good under the variant rules, that is). That city was chosen because the SPHQ removes corruption nearly completely.
Medicine was discovered on the same turn as Rome again, but then our choices of what to research finally diverged. While I had researched espionage, he had discovered electricity which I now traded for, and while he researched replacable parts next, I went for scientific methods for the theory of evolution. I discovered the tech in 1335AD. On the same turn, England had replacable parts, too, so I traded medicine for it to have access to civil engineers! These sped up the constructio of the theory of evolution.
Now I finally was ahead in tech! But I was really impressed with Caesar. He lacked vital resources: Iron, rubber and coal. He had only an average-sized land. And so he had concentrated on research to gain an advantage at least in that field. Too bad for him he failed.
Oh, by the way, Carthage had declared war on Egypt some centuries before. It was a war with rifles and longbows only, and Carthage actually managed to raze on city, and to pillage Egypt back into the stone age.
I could have crushed both easily, and could have taken control of the whole continent - but why? I wanted to concentrate on the space race and not turn this game even more into your usual warmonger's game.
I built Shakespear's and Suffrage next, and my only city on a river, Camulodunum (my ex worker factory) was constructing one of the most important wonders for me: The Hoover Dam! Some painful micromanaging happened. Cities building units had only scientists as specialists, but when the city started to construct a building, they all had to be changed into civil engineers. And often it was better to hire an additional civil engineer than working a one-shield irrigated plains tile. Only policemen were never hired. And more often than not, I didn't bother with micromanaging my cities at all - I had a very dominant position already despite the non-optimal government and the no-mining rule, so I found it hard to motivate myself to do so. That can also be seen later by my fast total playtime of 10,5 hours.
In 1485AD, Rome landed seven cavalry near on of my cities. I told him to leave, he declared war, I killed his landings easily and made peace again in 1520AD. Nothing exciting, really. To fuel my research, I once in a while sold tech, for example:
In 1530AD I discovered mototized transportation and finally filled the empty army I still had hanging around with tanks. I was now researching most techs in four, but some still in five turns. The modern age was entered in 1550AD, and computers was researched next, needing six turns. I forgot to prebuild for research labs, so fission needed longer to research than it should have. I had prebuilt for SETI in my best-researching city, though. When computers came in, it needed another 10 turns to finish it - 16 without engineers.
I could have gifted all my techs to the other AIs to get them into the modern age, hoping they would research something I had not to speed up my victory, but neglected to do so. Giving up my huge tech lead wasn't very stylish, was it?
Egypt actually dared to declare war on me, and so my tank army finally got something to do and quicky captured both Egyptian cities that were left on the continent, and so Cleo finished the game with an OCC on an island.
It's about time for a word on pollution. What is it actually good for? I HATE pollution - what does it add to the game besides tedium? It's sooo boring to wake up your worker stack, move it to the polluted square, hit "shift-C" a few times, then realize you had clicked it once too often and the first worker was already busy clearing the forest you aren't allowed to replant, so you have to wake him again. Then you have to zoom into the city to reassign the citizen to the tile. Of course
the game picks not the taxman who had been working the tile before but a scientist, so you have to change the taxman into a scientist. But because it's a large city with lots of specialists and Firaxis cannot calculare coordinates correctly, you click exactly on the center of the taxman graphics but the neighbouring scientist gets changed instead, so now you have to change two specialists into scientists... ARGH! Because of all the specialists, you cannot let the governor take control of the cities either, and automating workers doesn't help because the tile won't get reworked once the pollution is gone, so again: What is pollution good for? It forces you to keep some workers in the late game, but that's no big deal. And it weakens the AI because it's not very good at cleaning pollution, so all it does is adding tedium. I hate it. I hate it! I HATE it!
But let's stop rambling and go back to the game.
Space 'race' victory in 1774AD, with a tech lead of 8-10 techs.
And here's my list of top-producing cities.
My top-producing city is worse than in your normal game of course, but overall I didn't suffer much from the "no mines" variant rule - it felt not very differently, probably because this had only been emperor. Several of my cities had benefitted greatly from building offshore platforms by the way, but they come way too late to be really useful.
Thanks to T-hawk for an interesting variant game!