1. We have added a Gift Upgrades feature that allows you to gift an account upgrade to another member, just in time for the holiday season. You can see the gift option when going to the Account Upgrades screen, or on any user profile screen.
    Dismiss Notice

[GS] How Well Are Leaders Portrayed in Civ6?

Discussion in 'Civ6 - General Discussions' started by Siptah, Jan 11, 2019.

  1. Siptah

    Siptah Eternal Chieftain

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2016
    Messages:
    4,740
    Location:
    Lucerne
    So Barbarossa should be displayed while drow... ah, that's why he's wearing plate armor!

    The display of leaders in civ VI in relation to the background is just contradictory and doesn't make much sense. Obviously, they are not standing in front of what is seen in the background, otherwise their clothes and dresses wouldn't fit. I still get the feeling they are actors on a stage, thus Mansa can wear anything, since there is no context - "home dress" or "hajj dress" (whatever the latter is). Keep in mind that he would not wear a desert headgarb in places where he met other people, like Cairo or Mecca, but only during traveling - if even then, we can't know. Additionally, Desert headgarbs are very easy to get wrong; it's hard to tell an Alasho from a Tagelmust or a Lifam for foreigners to those cultures - and none of those named would be fitting for Mali :p

    Moderator Action: Since you cannot stay on topic in the Mali thread, have created this one for your discussion. leif
    Please read the forum rules: http://forums.civfanatics.com/showthread.php?t=422889
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 12, 2019
    altayrneto, TahamiTsunami and Zaarin like this.
  2. Morningcalm

    Morningcalm Keeper of Records

    Joined:
    May 7, 2007
    Messages:
    3,654
    Location:
    Abroad
    I think that any inconsistencies in costume/background backup come more in VI than V, and even then are relatively rare. I think many leaders fit the costume to the backdrop, though maybe not as organically as in V. Agreed that Cleopatra is one of the better matchups in that regard.

    I am fairly sure the Malian emperor would have worn desert headgarb a fair bit too. While emperors certainly lived in more comfort than others, they didn't really have many ways to regulate heat in desert cities (beyond using the right kind of brick in buildings or choosing clothing carefully).

    For rulers of areas like Mali I think desert headgarb makes sense. It isn't a must, but lacking it seems a missed opportunity to me. When Mansa Suleyman travelled on horseback he had such headgarb on apparently.

    That being said, maybe Musa's costume is based on this traditional Malian garb: https://www.custom-qamis.com/en/blog//traditional-dress-of-mali

    Yeah, for better or worse, people associate being overweight and jolly with generosity. The overweight quality of Musa kind of aligns with contemporary African thought on leaders being "big men" (implicit pun), and their wealth is shown in part by their expansive waist.
     
  3. Uberfrog

    Uberfrog Warlord

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2007
    Messages:
    2,414
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    England
    He shouldn’t really be wearing plate armour at all, but rather chain mail. :lol:

    I quite like that we have Musa without the turban. I’m not especially expert about West African attire, but unless they were depicting him travelling, that sort of face covering is more associated with the Tuareg than the Mandinka.

    His attire is distinctively African in feel—I’m glad they didn’t go for the European-style crown he wore in Civ IV.
     
  4. steveg700

    steveg700 Warlord

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2012
    Messages:
    2,740
    When you're in charge, you can wear whatever you please wherever you please. It's good to be the king. Rich people aren't crazy, they're eccentric. Emperors aren't eccentric, they're divine.

    Just make sure you're standing or sitting higher up than everyone else around you.

    But seriously, it's not as if these leaders would be face-to-face with each other before modern times anyway.
     
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2019
  5. Steamboat Willem

    Steamboat Willem Chieftain

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2018
    Messages:
    138
    Julius Caesar and Cleopatra met, very close-up apparently.

    Phillip II met both William of Orange and Elizabeth I, and Catherine de Medici was his mother-in-law.

    But there were meetings between kings in Europe dating back to Medieval time. A well known one slightly later is the one between Henry VIII of England and Francis I of France: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Field_of_the_Cloth_of_Gold
     
  6. Zaarin

    Zaarin My Dearest Doctor

    Joined:
    May 14, 2016
    Messages:
    5,390
    Location:
    Terok Nor
    Don't forget George III's famed meeting with the King of Prussia in his garden. :mischief:
     
    TahamiTsunami, Ondolindë and Buthera like this.
  7. Boris Gudenuf

    Boris Gudenuf Warlord

    Joined:
    Mar 11, 2012
    Messages:
    1,560
    Location:
    north of Steilacoom, WA
    "Personal Diplomacy" had real meaning for most of history . . .

    Most European and many other monarchs/kings/leaders did their own diplomacy. It was only when the leader was also given a religious function (Egyptian God-Pharoahs) that they had to be 'insulated' from the Uncouth Furriners. Then, after the rise of the Bureaucratic State (18th century, roughly) 'professional diplomats' started to take over the job. The problem in the game, of course, is that many of the leaders are from entirely different time periods, and even being off by a generation or so (Alexander-Pericles-Cyrus, for instance) makes a personal meeting impossible.

    And note that the Roman leader in Civ VI is Trajan, not Julius, so there was no realistic chance of a meeting between him and Cleopatra unless it was through a Medium. Or between him any other Egyptian leaders, since by his time Egypt was simply a part of the Roman Empire and he appointed its (Roman) leader/governor.
     
    nzcamel and Zaarin like this.
  8. Steamboat Willem

    Steamboat Willem Chieftain

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2018
    Messages:
    138
    Julius was leader of Rome in earlier Civ games, although I can't remember if Cleopatra was leader of Egypt in the same game. I think they were both in CivRev.
     
  9. Morningcalm

    Morningcalm Keeper of Records

    Joined:
    May 7, 2007
    Messages:
    3,654
    Location:
    Abroad
    Agreed. The plate armor was so ridiculously anachronistic, as many have pointed out.

    None of the leaders in Civ VI are portrayed as traveling, but desert headgear in a desert region is appropriate regardless of whether one is traveling or not. Heat and sand are present regardless of whether you are traveling or not. And many portrayals of Musa closer to Mali show him with such headgarb anyway.

    As for what Musa is currently wearing on his head....I repeat my opinion that he looks like a genie more than a musa. :p

    In a way Askia from Civ V is closer to the descriptions of the Musa (albeit Musa Suleyman, Musa's later successor) from Ibn Battuta, especially due to the red clothing.
     
    nzcamel likes this.
  10. Lord Lakely

    Lord Lakely Unintentionally a feminist.

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2008
    Messages:
    1,206
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Belgium
    Reminds me of that scene in Blackadder III where he wants to marry his son (the one that's is young and foolish, and has a peanut for a brain), to a literal rosebush <3

    Also JC and Cleo were both leaders in Civ3. Actually so were William of Orange and Charles V (as the leader for the hidden Austrian civ)
     
    nzcamel, Zaarin and TahamiTsunami like this.
  11. Uberfrog

    Uberfrog Warlord

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2007
    Messages:
    2,414
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    England
    I think the problem with depicting Mali as the desert Civ par excellence is that while their empire incorporate desert, their cities (quite understandably) are concentrated along the Niger river in the south of the country in the Sahel and savannah. Musa’s court was in Niani, way down in what is now Guinea, on the edge of a rainforest. So no desert attire would have been necessary at home. Timbuktu is on the edge of the Sahara, so perhaps there you’d need it to face the odd dust storm. But this is why in general the face veil is associated with the desert tribes like the Tuareg from the north of the country, where the Taghaza salt mines were. The gold mines were down in the south.

    In any case, even in the Sahel region I think dust storms were less common in the Middle Ages, as modern farming techniques and higher populations have led to increased desertification in central Mali.

    Spoiler Mali Empire map :
     
    Kimiimaro, CPWimmer, Siptah and 3 others like this.
  12. Josephias

    Josephias Chieftain

    Joined:
    May 8, 2007
    Messages:
    781
    Eli I was Phil's half-sister in law, too. (Some say he, at least, had some romantic interest for her, and pretended her after widowing from her half-sister, which gives some strange angle to the fact they were mostly at war).

    On topic, I think the backgrounds are not the strongest feature of civ VI, and are there just to give some "idea" that behind the leader there is a civ, normally being representative buildings or panoramas. The dressing is more fitting the "big leaders, big personalities" idea, with each leader wearing in-character. So more militaristic leaders wear armor / weapons, while more peaceful ones are dressing in relatively common clothes. Pete said they wanted Musa to be the "friendly rich boy". To translate a friendly personality, a more city/home dress is fitting, than the headwear he would only use when traveling.

    I think when Musa was buying at the bazars in cairo his attire was probably much more likely the one used in Civ VI than a turban.
     
    nzcamel likes this.
  13. nzcamel

    nzcamel Nahtanoj the Magnificent

    Joined:
    Feb 15, 2006
    Messages:
    2,633
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Christchurch, New Zealand
    I don't mind the simplified leader backgrounds of VI, but it is surprising how much they vary in quality. Compare Harold's to Jadwiga's!
     
  14. Morningcalm

    Morningcalm Keeper of Records

    Joined:
    May 7, 2007
    Messages:
    3,654
    Location:
    Abroad
    Musa's leader background in Civ VI doesn't show Niani on the edge of a jungle, but a desert-surrounded Timbuktu (or Djenne). So desert headgarb is highly appropriate for Mansa Musa given his leader background.

    Furthermore, Niani is quite a warm place. Jungles are hot, so headgear designed to absorb sweat is common in such areas anyway. Such headgear isn't purely to keep out sand though that's certainly a big benefit.

    And in any event, Musa is primarily known for his hajj, which took a long time (months to a year or so in 1324-1325) and crossed vast expanses of desert.

    As for Mali itself and desert, I suspect the bonuses allude to the Saharan trade routes which really benefited Mali.
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2019
    TahamiTsunami likes this.
  15. Siptah

    Siptah Eternal Chieftain

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2016
    Messages:
    4,740
    Location:
    Lucerne
    If I follow your line and thinking I still arrive at: headgarb is a suboptimal portrayal.

    If leaders should be be portrayed to accentuate what they are most famous for, this would easily being the richest person in history for Musa. The fame of his hajj is directly related to that, but - quite obviously I think - on a lower level. Needless to say that his wealth would be less famous if he didn‘t travel.

    So if a portrayal of Musa should display his wealth, FXS nailed it: overly rich clothing, gold rings, big belly. It‘s also what the people in cairo rememberd most: his rich clothing and his piety (not portrayed). Wearing traveling clothes would not display his wealth well, least of all common man desert clothes that make a millionaire look like his local guide even today when you go for extended desert rides. So as I said earlier, he could wear a headgarb, but it is a suboptimal display.

    And still don‘t get what the background image should have to do with it btw, I see it as evident that it‘s not the location the leader is at and I‘m puzzled why you seem to think otherwise.
     
  16. Morningcalm

    Morningcalm Keeper of Records

    Joined:
    May 7, 2007
    Messages:
    3,654
    Location:
    Abroad
    I think Musa should have had headgarb because his background shows a desert environment, and his hajj (and time in Egypt) covered desert environments as well. I know of no historical record saying what Mansa Musa looked like physically, especially insofar as a big belly, so I fail to see how that can be deemed accurate or realistic even if it is a trait associated with wealth in modern African nations. There are other ways to show wealth, and if you think a desert headgarb is inappropriate in showing that, then I would point to the desert environment once again, which as earlier mentioned appears in Musa's background.

    As for Musa's clothing, I do not recall myself or anyone else saying he ought to be wearing "traveling clothes" beyond the headgarb. Desert headgarb is functional, with or without travel in desert environments (as I mentioned earlier) and many rulers wore it as well. Was Ahmad Al-Mansur's headgarb in Civ V unfitting just because common people also wore it near the desert? People who deem a desert headgarb-wearing person of importance as looking more like "local guide" reveal more about their own thought patterns rather than anything else, and Firaxis should feel free to portray rulers based on realism.

    If I understand you correctly, you think the location shown in the leader background must be understood precisely NOT to be where the leader is? Why does Roosevelt's background show the White House then? Why does Seondeok's background show a moonlit Korean palace? Why does Philip II's show El Escorial? Why does Mansa Musa's portray a desert-bound city then, particularly in light of Mali's capital having a desert bias?
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2019
  17. steveg700

    steveg700 Warlord

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2012
    Messages:
    2,740
    Concerning the notion of how "dignified" leaders are depicted, Civ is targeted at the mass market. They do not desire an overly austere and stuffy presentation. In fact, I would wager they assiduously avoid it.

    The presentation of leaders cannot be separated from the overall presentation of the game. We are not going to have regal leaders putting on their solemn, stern pokerfaces while th hockey rinks and rock bands cavort.
    Well, the existence of exceptions do not disprove a rule. Suffice to say, in a period of histry full of tenuous and frictious relationships, showing up in a rival kingdom's court was not considered prudent--even when they were blood relatives.

    And when Caesar is meeting with Cleo, it is an emperor meeting with a vassal. Certainly Caesar did not see himself consorting with a peer.
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2019
    Morningcalm, nzcamel and Zaarin like this.
  18. Morningcalm

    Morningcalm Keeper of Records

    Joined:
    May 7, 2007
    Messages:
    3,654
    Location:
    Abroad
    Agreed; so desert headgear would be just fine. Not all rulers need to be wearing crowns. Notably, Queen Wilhelmina is not portrayed in full regalia, but has an umbrella and other things, which is charming and adds variety.
     
    nzcamel and steveg700 like this.
  19. Zaarin

    Zaarin My Dearest Doctor

    Joined:
    May 14, 2016
    Messages:
    5,390
    Location:
    Terok Nor
    "May you choke on any other sentiments like that!" Cleopatra VII, pharaoh of Egypt, incarnation of Isis, acknowledges herself no one's vassal. :p But yes, Cleo was certainly Caesar's vassal...and mistress, not his peer. Fun fact: the usual address of one king to another in the Near East was "brother," as indicated in various correspondences like the Amarna letters and also the Biblical accounts.
     
  20. God of Kings

    God of Kings Ruler of all heads of state

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2012
    Messages:
    5,113
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario, Canada
    Wilfred Laurier's background is anachronistic.



    Laurier died two years before the Peace Tower was completed.

    The Centre Block of the Parliament Complex in Ottawa during Laurier's time looked like this:



    The original tower was burned down after Laurier was prime minister, but before he died.
     
    Hawke9, Kjimmet, monstercat and 3 others like this.

Share This Page