I’ve heard people saying that the new Hardest AI is cheating now due to double resource collection therefore making it impossible for more people to beat it. This is my own personal style for beating Hardest AI, it worked before it’s update and it still works after the update:
Map: whatever map you feel most comfortable with, though I always choose Hill and Dale because it’s more easy to defend yourself.
Map size: Micro 2 player
Win condition: I always choose Landmarks only
Starting resources: Maximum (This way you don’t have to worry about economy while the AI will still waste time gathering unnecessary resources)
Starting Age: IV Imperial (Makes it so that you only have to destroy one landmark to win, if you start in the dark age then you’ll have to destroy multiple landmarks making it much more difficult)
Map State: Revealed (Makes it easier because you can see their troops coming)