Turn 35. My research is 11.1 per turn - with six cities, spells and studies. Verga, with 3 cities, is somehow pulling 17 per turn. I am saving every turn (well, every now and then, I forget). Once the game is over, I'll use cheats to try and figure out how he is doing it.
On the flip side, I watched a Krax army search a library, and Karavox's research total did not increase by 20, as I would have expected it to.
Turn 37: I meet Pariden. Their accumulated research is one fifth of mine, but they have more trade points than I do. Sure, I have traded with the others, but I assume that Pariden has done so as well. This is strange.
Stranger is the fact that Yithril is still pulling 27 17 research per turn. There is no way in Hell Verga can get that from his cities, it's unlikely that he is getting it from a hero, and I can tell he has no technology treaties with anyone.
My caravans give me a look at Yithril's cities. He has less than 4 research per turn from them. Where are the other 23 13 coming from?
Turn 39: Probability sense tingling.
Within 3 tiles of the Yithril capital, I see five resources: gold, iron, and crystal deposits, a shard, and a prestigious location.
Within 3 tiles of the Krax capital, I see five resources: gold, two clay deposits, a shard and a wild warg pack.
Within 3 tiles of the Pariden capital, I see five resources: gold, iron, clay, a shard, and a wild game hunting game.
No need to point out that there aren't five resources near my capital, is there?
Turn 41: At this point, both Verga and Procipinee are generating more Tech trade points than I am. Verga because somehow his research is higher than mine, and Procipinee just because (her research is one sixth of mine)
Turn 42: Crash. I'm on my laptop, and it clearly does not like me switching between large apps. As I reload (first reload in this game), a few interesting things happen.
Karavox research goes to 12 per turn, without any change in his cities (and there are no more libraries on the map accessible to AIs)
I get the Kitty quest event. I have never gotten any events but Kitty and the annoying jerk with the useless wipe-population spell.