Once you have a few cities in Grepolis, you have to think of how you want to use them. You could have every city in a balanced state of defense and offense, but there are certainly uses to city specialization.
There are limits to this game that urge you to be effective. You cannot move troops between cities, only support, and there is a maximum population to each city, so your army can only be a certain city. By specializing cities, you can make sure to have the optimum amount of attackers and defenders where you need it and you can get to pick the techs that fit the strategy of each city (which is useful, since it means you don't need to build Library to get all the techs you want)
A part of the offensive strategy is to have a city where you build only light ships to use for attack. The light ships can be used to screen for defensive ships so that your conquest army won't face any. When you attack, you can time your attacks from the different cities so that the attacks with the light ships hit just a few seconds before your main attack. Having all your light ships in one city will mean that you only have to time attacks with light ships from that city, not all your cities. Still, you should always send some light ships along with your main army so that are never completely dead if the defender intercepts with defensive ships. With a maxed army worth 3000 population, you could have 40 light ships, 1950 slingers, 121 fast transports.
40 light ships is a good number if you're just looking to use your offensive city to raid for battle points as well. It's unlikely that anyone will keep more than 40 biremes in one city. So, to defeat you, they have to send biremes from other cities as well. If you're fairly close to the target, it's unlikely this will happen, especially if you have sacrificed the 400 extra food from Thermal baths to build Lighthose instead, giving your fleet a 15% speed boost. If they do manage to get, say, 100 biremes to defend, those will only manage to kill off 40 of your transport ships since they will have to fight your light ships. If your target and his nearby friends have too many biremes, you might want to use your city with only light ships to kill some of those a few days ahead of the attack.
A city with only light ships can be a bit risky, since, if attacked, they will be very easy defeat. If you choose this strategy, you should be certain that every time your are not online, you send your light ships to attack an inactive player far away so that the light ships will return from the attack at the time when you come back. If you are offline for six hours, you should attack a target three hours away, making the trip back and forth six hours in total. If you can do this, light ships are also a great defense against conquest. If anyone conquers your city while the light ships are away, they will fight him when they come back. They will likely have great enough numbers to defeat the biremes that he has sent to support the city (3000 population = 300 light ships). Even though they don't destroy the land troops, they destroy the colony ship, which means that the conquest attempt is over.
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