CU v5 Beta 1D test game, played around 100 turns. Large map, 10 players, Painful, lots of planets. My favorite "knife fight" scenario.
Thanks again to Mabus for clueing me in to Ctrl-Shift-Z; I was able to take a pretty in-depth look at the AI performance:
Korx - 16 colonies, 1400bc income (healthy 23% from trade). Spying slider maxxed of course but "only" sucking up 270 bc/week. Had Medium hulls, Planetary Invasion, Rail Guns II, and 2 fully developed X-Col techs. No econ techs yet, but it isn't hurting them. A pleasant surprise -- they've been playing a lot better lately.
Thalan - 17 colonies, 1500bc income (9% from trade). Spy slider maxxed, 285 bc/week. Had already run up to Virtual Republic, Hyperion Starbases, and almost all its Econ/factory techs. Had Laser II, Planetary Invasion, and Ion drives and Small hulls. Had just started slugging it out with the Torians. Their early SBs are scary and are shredding Torian fleets but they *do* take non-trivial damage. Singularity Weapons in their current state are giving the Thalan a very nice advantage early midgame, but not overpoweringly so.
Altarian - 14 colonies, 960bc income (13% from trade). Spy slider maxxed, 181 bc/week. Had grabbed Dark Energy Research and Manufacturing Centers, and run all the way up to Impulse Drive. Had two econ techs but no research techs (aside from Xeno Research). Had Singularity Driver II(wow!), Planetary Invasion, Starbase Militarization, Small hulls, no defensive techs.
Torian - 15 colonies, 1341 income (8% from trade). Spy slider maxxed at 257 bc/week. Had grabbed Wellness Falls, Xeno Factories, AM Power Plants, Cities of Learning & Greater Enlightenment, plus a couple econ techs. Well rounded. Had Rail Guns III, Planetary Invasion, Starbase Militarization, Small hulls, no defensive techs. Were throwing fleets and transports at Thalan airspace like they were going out of style.
Drath - 6 colonies, 500 bc income (13% from trade). Spy slider nearly minimum at 10 bc/week (interesting!). The Drath got screwed. They started in an isolated system in the corner at least 1.5 parsecs to the nearest star. Which contained the Thalans. I think they did quite well considering. They as yet had only Space Weapons, but at least they'd grabbed Starbase Militarization (and were using it). They had yet to research Saurian Cunning or even Small hulls, but had a good mix of factory/research/econ techs. I think they did quite well considering. One thing they did *very* well was grab galactic resources, including an econ and a weapons resource 6 *parsecs* from Thala! Lazy Thalans...
BUG: The Drath "Hatchling Mount" should be "Hatchling Mound". Both the tech display name and description are wrong.
Iconians - 12 colonies, 901 bc income (5% from trade). Spy slider maxxed at 162 bc/week. Grabbed all their econ techs and started on Industrial Replication. Had Impulse Drive, and were working on Rad and Toxic world X-Col (had finished Aquatic). Had Scatterguns II, Planetary Invasion, Military SB Construction, Small hulls (though they were working towards Medium), no defenses.
Drengin - 9 colonies, 620 bc income (7% from trade). Spy slider midway at 97 bc/week. Fell victim to the "mid-map squash" with the Altarian, Korx, and Thalan eating up most of the nearby real estate before they could get too far off the ground. They had not yet researched.. Universal Translator!? Apart from that had a decent mix of low-mid level econ techs and had just done Slave Canyons. Had Laser III, Unconventional Warfare, Planetary Invasion, Military SB Construction, and Small hulls. Not bad but they kind of lost the colony rush.
Korath - 2 colonies. Got screwed worse than the Drath; HW was kitty-corner to the Drath on the extreme edge of the map, in a big void. What planets they might have grabbed were too close to the Thalan HW for them to have ever had a chance. They had ok tech for their position (Planetary Invasion aside) but with 156 bc econ (0% trade) they were not going to be even a minor threat to anyone.
Krynn - fell victim to an early rush from the meatbag. Before they fell they had grabbed a good selection of techs, run a fair ways up their Influence tree, grabbed all their espionage techs, Impulse Drive, and Manufacturing Centers. Oddly enough they had no econ techs other than the Manufacturing Centers (not quite, they did get Xeno Research). Had Rail Guns II, Small ships, Planetary Invasion, Starbase Militarization, no defenses.
Arcaen - lousy "meatbag" AI, grabbed Particle Beams III and Planetary Conquest before tech inflation kicked in, crash built a couple dozen tiny 5-0-0 ships and, in fleets of 4, completely controlled Krynn space before they knew what hit them, at which point it was just a matter of dropping enough soldiers on them. 25 planets, but their tech stinks and their economy is best described as "in the toilet". This AI is bad and should probably be disabled.
I'm quite happy with how well the AI did:
* good colony rush, considering initial positions
* outstanding tech development, with only a couple "odd" choices, nobody is missing anything critical
* good early navy development
This mod rocks. If vanilla TA/Ultimate had played anything like this I would have died a long time ago from lack of sleep.