Suggested revisions to the strategy section-
I just played my first game as Venice the other day on King difficulty level with a normal sized world and quick speed. I live this civ a lot! My main gripe with the strategy section is it claims that domination victory isn't worth considering. In my experience I found this to be the easiest way to win with Venice and did so easily by the gunpowder age. At the time I also had built 20 of the 25 or so wonders in the game (but then acquired most of the others through conquest), but was nowhere near earning a cultural victory.
Domination is easy for a couple reasons. Chiefly, Venice has the potential to make loads and loads of money which makes buying and supporting a big army simple. Their ability to purchase units in puppeted cities is also great for fueling far-off campaigns, and their relatively small empire size means that happiness shouldn't be a big issue, either.
I also did not adopt Commerce, though it's a good option but not for the reason given (allowing you to purchase Great Merchants, which, late in the game, isn't really that great). Actually commerce is good because it gives your capital a big boost to gold and anything you can do to improve your capital is key, and also for Mercantilism which makes purchasing in cities cheaper- also key to Venetian success.
In my own game, I went with Tradition first because I wanted to make Venice as big and industrious as possible as soon as possible. Then I went for Patronage because my strategy relied heavily on support from city states. And finally I went for Exploration because my empire was mostly maritime and almost every city in it was on the coast. Also, "Treasure Fleets" is wonderful (much better than the Commerce equivalent) given Venice's trade routes bonus. Then at the very end of the game when I had already pretty much won anyway I got to Idealogy and went with Autocracy to help finish off the last hold outs.
My first game I had a crappy starting location, and that's really Venice's one BIG downfall is that starting location will make or break you completely. I was on a lake, inland, few good resources around. So I reset the game and got something better. I had a lot of hills, a mountain next to my city, a flood plain with tons of cotton, two cows, a source of marble 4 hexes away (not ideal but still good), some sea resources, and probably most importantly, on a coastline. Only thing that would have been better is if I was also on a river but decided to take it rather than starting over.
I founded a religion early on and gave myself God King which is very good for Venice. I also made allies with a nearby militant city state and instead of puppeting them I used them throughout the game to build up my army which was a great boon. Every few turns they would give me a Berserker which left my city to focus on more important things than troop buildup. The extra trade routes are an awesome bonus and it means that you can make tons of gold and also move your cargo ships to other cities and have them ship food back to Venice to make Venice huge. Near the end of the game my capital city was so efficient that I could produce any unit or regular building in a single turn, any national wonder in 2 turns, and and world wonder in 3-6 turns depending. I focused on building wonders at first and just used gold to purchase other things I needed like workers and regular buildings. The fact that your empire can only expand through puppets is almost a boon- in addition to making your turns much faster, it also means you will be able to advance through culture and science trees very quickly, giving you an edge over other Civs if you pick the right techs and social policies. And Venice's ability to buy buildings and units in puppet cities almost completely negates the one serious disadvantage of puppet cities which is that you can't guide their development or use them to build units.
In summation, develop Venice intelligently making it as big, profitable and productive as possible, maybe get a city state ally to feed you units, and one you start taking over other civ's cities you should find a Domination victory is quite simple. Much easier I think than a Cultural Victory, which is better if you have at least four or five (or more) cities all pumping out massive amounts of culture and all with empty museum slots to fill, or a political victory which as the article points out is somewhat sabotaged by your own Merchant of Venice ability... maybe the one victory that Venice is just as well suited for as Domination is Science. That might actually be their strongest point. But I found Domination so quick and easy to obtain I didn't have time to worry about building a spaceship.
Multiple Venice players Edit
It's possible at least in single player, if you use "Set Up Game" -> "Advanced Setup" to manually assign civs to AI players. I did so just to see what would happen with multiple Venices. - Sikon (talk) 11:26, March 18, 2015 (UTC)