Having just started with Revised, and having won what is called a “minor” victory on T1, I have to concur that 8 cities is a joke.
9 does indeed make more sense, at least for the Axis. Then you are looking at also taking Moscow (in all probability) putting 1 of the 3 allies out of the war. With Russia gone, and Germany and Japan still holding their initial 3, there is no hope for the Allies… it is a war of attrition with the Axis building at 180%+ of the allies.
For the Allies, 9 cities makes more sense too.
Snagging Shanghai in UK1 is pretty easy to do, and Manila can often be taken in during R2, depending on how the US and UK work their fleet. Then it comes down to Rome or Paris.
If Allies can take and hold Shanghai, Manila, and Paris/Rome at the end of a given turn, then the Axis is screwed. Another war of attrition, this time one that the Axis cannot win.
8 cities can be a fluke for EITHER side. But getting 9… that denotes some significant strategy, combat success, and a degree of economic power that would make “world domination” inevitable (except in the most extreme case of dice f*ck ever recorded).