Skip to the bottom for surrounded players or if you just want some general tips.
1. Build a city once you leave the savage age.
2.Build a tavern if you haven't already.(This is one of the buildings that should be upgraded to the max every age, so try to do that to get high lvl monks)
3. Click on your Tavern and hire as many priests as you can,preferably blue level monks or green.
4.Worship your city on normal speed for 12 hours but don't put any priests inside. (If you are low on priests,otherwise put a priest with good missionizing skill inside so you can put a temple farther out)
5.Wait until you see green territory plots outside your city.
6 Survey your surroundings- look for untaken Wild Lands so you can choose which direction to focus your temples.
7.In the right top corner click on a the square with a C that says "Show others territory". (This does exactly as it says the red square border is taken territory anywhere behind it, while the ones that aren't are free to take without a fight.)
8. Build your temples in the area that looks appropriate to you for expansion (Direction of Wild Lands/Non-red areas) on one of your green territory plots.
9. Immiediatly place a priest in your new temple by clicking on it and pressing dispatch priest then click which you want to send.
10. Click on your temples then click Worship, designate your temples to worship for whatever time you see fit. (I would suggest if you have the gold to put it on atleast acclerate for 4 hours or more.)
11. Wait about 1- 2 hours and your territory will be expanded. The more spirit a temple has the more territory it claims.(Priests Missionizing skill can help to increase the limit of squares a temple can take.)
12. By the end of your worship now your borders should have stretched out a good 8 or so squares. Now would be a good time to either build a new temple at the edge of your borders or destroy your old ones and put it in a new spot.( But if you destroy it you have about 2 hours to rebuild it or you will lose your gained territory. Once you rebuild it farther out reworship it on rapid speed for 1 hour. It will cost 10k gold, but it will prevent the loss of territory.
13. Repeat steps 1-12 to keep expanding territory.
Other Territory Tips
I'm surrounded by players!? What do I do!!?!
1. If you are completely surrounded or overtaken by someone you have to pay tax to.You have 2 choices, use your exodus to go somewhere less crowded or fight your way out.
If you chose to fight your way out then good I applaud you it's challenging and satisfying once you do manage to take some territory. But remember it will take time maybe even days or weeks if the people around you have high spirit temples(5000-9999 spirit) already in place always being worshipped and with good priests. If this is the case I'd even use my exodus, but no! screw them! thats your land right?! Time to kick some ass!
2. Survey the area check for anyway to expand thats empty, using step 7 in the earlier list. If you are overtaken or surrounded look for easy to kill temples (1000 or below spirit or temples not being worshipped)
3. DEFAME DEFAME DEFAME- need I say more take your missionaries to all of enemy temples and defame them, click the temple click defame then choose a missionary with a high defame skill.
(Whenever your priests that you use for defaming level up, keep putting points into Defame, all Priests worshipping at temples should have their points in Pray and Missionize but focus on pray to get alot of spirit quicky after you have a good 90-100 pray go for missionizing)
4.Pay attention if your priests finish their defame and you forget to reassign them, they are doing nothing.
5. Worship your temples like crazy if you have the money try to keep on rapid for atleast a few hours accelerate should be fine if you dont have the money.If you are low on cash, atleast try a 1 hour rapid. If you are overtaken just do the same thing for your city temple or any temples the enemy forgot to destroy. Until you start gaining territory back and can put some temples out.
Check out the merchanting guide on how to gain money.
6. Have patience and build your army, your enemy may not like you defaming him. Now you just wait for territory gain.
-Try to go after land with inactive players so you can gain their cities and tax them, doesn't hurt to go after players territory who are active though but go after them last or if you have no choice.
-Remember to keep building your priests attributes into Pray and Defame this helps with expansion so does Worship but being able to accumulate quick spirit is key. Worship adds the maximum amount of squares a temple can expand it's territory. Pray gives more spirit points for worshipping priests and Defame helps increase the spirit you take away from enemy temples. Don't bother wasting points on Pious since it's easy to get rid of enemy priests and you will rarely be bothered.
-AND MOST OF ALL HAVE PATIENCE