Man, in which difficulty setting you were playing? The graph clearly says the AIs had an army much before you did. Such a kid's game. Also, the Persians? The Spanish are better in team games. The only good stuff for the Persians are the knight rush and elephant charge, but they are more than weak against a monk rush.
>inb4 crappy Spanish archers.
I hate to say it @Rinveron , but if you get THAT slow an advance to the Imperial Age as the fucking Byzantines... you're crap.