I really believe that I have found the key to an easy victory, and it relies not on brute force or generalship at all.
The city of Cardova, located in Iberia and owned by Carthage, is an amazingly wealthy city. After 50 years, they went from being a large town to the largest city of all in my empire, around 36,000 people live there. The location allows trade with the Spanish, Gauls, and Numidians. The sooner you capture this city, the better of you are.
Cardova is only one of several key, easy to take settlements that will provide for a rich, foreward recruitment base for your armies. The rest are:
Rhodes Athens Campaus Scythii Medolandium Londium Carthago Nova Thebes Helicarnassius That one on Crete that starts with a "K"...
Capturing these cities fast helps so much with the rest of the campaign, I could barely believe it.
Just a tip wieh you get there... "Romanize" them. Destroy their temples, replacing them with Roman ones. Level their barracks, stables and such and build them to look Roman. If the city looks Roman, even if it is far away from Rome, it will be a very happy place.
Hell, even London looks like Arrenium now.
7th December 2003
Yes, capturing rich cities is a good thing to do. Well, I never really had problems with money, actually, too much money can be a problem for you. Once your savings are higher than about 50000 your Generals start with more negative abilities, the most coming is "extravagant", if you have more than 300000 you can usually forget about your Generals, they all suck. That's why it isn't a stupid idea to look for one country that won't attack you (some countires are less agressive than others) and has a front with your common enemy. At the end of your turn you give them most of your money as present. Like this they will become good and powerful friends and your Generals won't suck :) Just don't let them grow too strong.
But look at all of those cities... Cardoba is Carthage... Rhodes is Greek... Londinum is British... They are all your enemies.
One problem with the Spanish cities. Your capital is very far from them, so you have to manage them well to keep the mob happy.
I'm playing on hard and I have all of those except Campus scythi and Cardoba, bah I don't need them I have twice as much money as all the other factions put together.
melolandium is a rich city? not on my campiagn it seems