For a while I've been working on a new mod to balance 0 A.D. for pro players. It features a lot of changes, and may take some getting used to.
A counter system: melee infantry counters cavalry which counters ranged infantry which counters melee infantry (rock paper scissors)
All techs are now useful and new dilemas have been added: many techs were too expensive to be worthwhile before
Only six civilizations: each one very different to the others, with more depth and possible strategies
More military buildings: units are split between barracks, archery ranges and stables
Balance severely nerfs "dancing" but allows for tactical manoeuvres
Battering rams and bolt shooters are now available in the town phase, but catapults are still city phase-only
Citizen soldiers cannot gather resources (except cavalry can still hunt) but they can still build
Women can build all buildings but civic centers can't build military units any more
Many features from similar civilizations have been merged into the six available civilizations
Stone and metal are more limited and only 16 women can gather from a mine at one time
Numerous small improvements: rams don't attack fields, loot is consistent, etc
The game encourages rushing more since citizen soldiers cannot gather resources. Generally players will produce women at the start while using their citizen soldiers to build and defend the women from rushes. Some civs can use dogs/tigers/lions for very early rushes. It's important to build at least any two of the barracks, archery range and stables fairly early so you are able to counter incoming attacks. The civic centers can build "Minutemen" which are cheap, have high attack and train fast, but slowly lose health over a minute. They're ideal for buying time if a rush catches you by surprise. There are now extra techs in the civic center and houses to increase women's vision, health and attack which can be used to mitigate against rushes.
In the town phase siege is available in the workshop and some civilizations get access to weaker champions. Many civilizations also have special buildings available.
In the city phase heros and more tech becomes available. Champions dominate in the late game.
The barracks now trains melee infantry: swordsmen, spearmen and pikemen. Spearmen and pikemen are now fast moving and are particularly effective at countering cavalry. Swordsmen "soft" counter cavalry and other melee infantry and have strong armour making them useful as a "tank" unit, but they're slow moving.
The archery range trains ranged infantry: skirmishers, slingers and archers. All these units are effective at countering melee infantry. Archers have the greastest range but are slower to move. Slingers do the least damage to infantry but are somewhat effective against buildings and siege. Skirmishers are fast moving and soft counter other ranged infantry but have less range than archers.
The stables train sword cavalry and spear cavalry. Sword cavalry is stronger in almost every way but only Brits and Mauryans have access to them. In addition, Ptolemies have access to camel archers which are weak and mostly only useful for hunting.
Brits Opening Strats
Starting units: 6 women, 2 spearmen, 2 slingers, sword cavalry and a dog.
Brits are good at rushing with their strong sword cavalry. However Brits also have access to dogs which can be used to rush very early in the game. It's a risky strategy though since if you don't kill enough enemy women you will fall behind economically. Dogs are only useful while your enemy may not have much army and become useless after 2-4 minutes of play time. Brits also have access to slingers and spearmen.
Iberians Opening Strats
Starting units: 6 women, 2 swordsmen, 2 skirmishers, spear cavalry and walls.
Iberians walls are more effective than in vanilla because of the fewer ranged units. Iberians have access to swordsmen, slingers, skirmishers and spear cavalry making them quite versatile. They also have upgraded towers with no minimum range. Their early game is mostly defensive and economy focused. They become stronger in the town phase with access to cheap Embassy swordsmen.
Mauryans Opening Strats
Starting units: 6 women, 2 spearmen, 2 archers and 2 worker elephants.
Mauryans are good at rushing with sword cavalry and upgradeable archers. They have access to tigers in the civic center which can be used for very fast rushes like Brits dogs. Mauryans start with two worker elephants which allows them flexibility in taking resources however they're the only civilization not to start with any cavalry which means that women have to gather chicken instead, slowing their economy.
Ptolemies Opening Strats
Starting units: 6 women, 2 pikemen, 2 skirmishers and 2 camel archers.
Ptolemies have free houses, farmsteads, storehouses and corrals making them great for booming. However early in the game they don't have access to any strong cavalry which means they need to exclusively build skirmishers and pikemen, which are slightly strong than spearmen. In the town phase they have the easiest expansion with cheap military colonies.
Rome Opening Strats
Starting units: 6 women, 2 swordsmen, 2 skirmishers, spear cavalry and a healer.
Rome are mostly defensive early in the game but they can do small very early rushes with lions. Since they can build ranged units in their barracks, they they are slightly more versatile in the opening period. Rome become much stronger in the town phase with their strong siege.
Sparta Opening Strats
Starting units: 6 women, 2 spearmen, 2 skirmishers, spear cavalry and a farm.
Sparta start with strong women (+100% health, +200% attack) which helps them if they're rushed. Sparta's early game should be focused on reaching the town phase and spamming their strong champion units and skiritai.
There may be bugs still, be warned! Please send me your suggestions and thoughts!