War - Built walls and towers. You will never win any war without these. Legion will always be the front-man while javelin with shoot from behind. Javelin is most effective to attack elephants. Once elephants are dead, attackers will lose motivations. The key point is that you got to have walls and towers.
Religion - You have to built oracles, so that God will never get piss off even if you do not perform events for long. Built oracles on remote areas to keep people happy and this will cut crime rates too.
Food - Built granary near to each housing area. Do not built granaries at a single location.
The thing which i learned from Tingis scenario is:
You need to built a warehouse near to each housing area too where it will store essential items for housing growth such as pottery, furniture, wine and oil. If you keep warehouses in a single location, marketeers will have hard time to get pottery. This could also partly due to the fact that marketeers have no time to walk to far to get those potteries should food supplies is just enough.
Built one warehouse very near to each housing area
For Tingis, even though you get to built a lot of farms but is it just enough for 8,000 people and it is a challenge to reach 8,000 where you will usually get stuck in between 7,000 to 8,000.