So normally I always semi-defended civ picking as a necessary evil, I’m a mostly random civ player myself but I understand some people could like the playstyle of some civs or not have the time to learn every tech tree in this game.
However, on Gurjaras, there is an influx of civ pickers in mid elos (I would say from 1400-1800 it starts being very oppressive) that ruin the fun for everyone. It’s like, Gurjaras once every 3 games. On a bad day, maybe even every other game. These people “cross the shield” too, so there is no chance to make them go random civ, and while beating Gurjaras is possible, it’s not a very worthwhile endeavor because very often it’s a case of beating the civ, not the player, the player behind it is quite horrible very often, but carried by so many crutch mechanics this civ has at basically any stage of the game (early game: Mill which is hard to break, feudal: Camel doing like 10 damage a hit to the Scout, early Castle age: Shrivamsha raid, mid Castle: Armored Elephant push, late Castle: boom into Kshatriyas and potential Chakram Thrower, late game: Kshatriyas army of Hussar/Shrivamshas/Chakrams.
I’m not exactly a fan of laming as I think it’s unfair and also inconsistent but I heard many say that the best way of beating Gurjaras is laming them. The problem is that it also prevents the game from becoming interesting, Gurjaras goes up 22-23 pop and it’s basically game over in Feudal already.
I think it’s important to address this because Franks or Mayans were always unfair, but to a reasonable level, if you kill 2 Mayan vills early Feudal, game isn’t over generally like it would be for other civs, but the Mayans still feel the pain. But Gurjaras, I’ve seen them come back from nearly anything.
I hope the civ is addressed next patch. Remember that it’s better to overnerf than not nerf enough in this case. There are currently A LOT of players in mid elos interested purely in gaining elo, no matter how unfair the method may be, and they spam Gurjaras every game. Because a 65% something winrate civ is SIGNIFICANTLY harder than beating your average 55% winrate Franks where you need to fend off early Feudal and Castle age timing and you basically win after.
Edit: honorable mention goes to Hindustanis which is also a civ I see VERY often. I am not sure about their winrate, and they aren’t THAT unfair, but still very strong and hard to beat (from my experience a bit harder than Franks but easier than Gurjaras).