Some spoilers ahead. But you can consider it as advice too.
I tried this remake and I loved it. I designed a villa block just for this scenario. Then the first attack came. I almost gave up, but then I defeated Hannibal in a one-year long hit and run war. I was not joking next time, gladiators greeted the next wave of Carthaginians. The battles were hard, but became easier as my defenses developed. I actually prolonged my victory, to see the later invasions.
Then I was ready to pocket my well-earned victory with my o-so-optimized city. But the victory never came... And that is when I realized that the population condition is also raised - 10,000 instead of the classic 7,000.
Wow, back to the drawing board. I am going at it again!