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New Mesoamerica Mod Teaser

No problem, I edited now the description in previous post which was not complete, I was trying to load at first 40mb gif with no success and eventually deleted some text and saved that post.

How can I upgrade royal jaguar warrior, this one with 2 moves, I played as Incas, and what building does that, I missed that somehow and do not know how to upgrade other units too.
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The Royal Jaguar Warrior is the end of the line for the Andeans, I'm afraid.

Eventually, I want to add more units for the Andeans in the 3rd era which expand on their usage of more common resources such as Copper instead.
Not having actually downloaded it yet I cannot check much. I'll finish my current (umpteenth) EFZI game and then have a look at this. (I apologise in advance, I don't think you've ever had to deal with me as a beta tester)

BUT I have to say that it's bigger than ‘Meso’America.

10/10 points just for attempting an all-precolumbine continental game already, Mr. Considon.
Here is something for you to consider:

Most of us, of course, know that, for the Aztecs, mass human sacrifice was prayer. There are also the mysteries of the ball courts, and we now know much more about the bizarrely named "Flower Walls." The Aztec "sacrifice machine" was a 24/7 operation, and there are now known documents describing how the limbs of the sacrificed were taken aside - and put into a special stew, for the elite to consume.

What was unknown when I was in college, but is known now, is that the "Flower Wars" were not wars, at all: subject people of the Aztecs were required to field "warriors" who were not allowed to win, in any way at all. They were, essentially, all just waiting their turn to have their hearts ripped out, alive, at the top of a step pyramid.

The problem facing the Aztecs was dietary: an extreme scarcity of protein. The only edible animal around (and I am by no means joking) was the guinea pig; and the Aztecs were too far from either coast to be able to add seafood to their diet.

... Have fun modding that! :think:
@Ozymandias Yeah sorry but no, nothing you said in that post is true. Sacrifices were not done daily, and the whole 'assembly line sacrifice' popularized in movies is contradicted by basic demographics. Flower wars were indeed wars, they were a cultural innovation to besiege hostile cultures through incessant seasonal campaigns more than anything else. Subject peoples rarely contributed regiments, aside from those provinces deemed as strategic (there were three types).

I wish you were joking because while there were no guinea pigs in Mesoamerica, there was a plethora of protein sources: maize (which has a lot), avocados (which has a lot), two breeds of turkeys, several breeds of dogs (a few of which were bred specifically to be eaten), fish, deer, rabbits, peccaries, and ducks, to name a few. Some of these were commonly herded, and three of them are fully domesticated. The protein thing is based on extremely faulty work by an extremely silly man decades ago who thinks that ritual cannibalism exists because humans are a good protein source - they're not.

EDIT: The Aztecs may have been "far" from a coast (as if that stops them from trading for fish or getting it as tribute from coastal provinces) but they were sitting on an immense lake basin which in prehispanic times was not only obscenely fertile for farming but also really good fishing.
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"It is possible that around 20,000 people were sacrificed a year in the Aztec Empire. Special occasions demanded more blood – when a new temple to Huitzilopochtli was dedicated in 1487, an estimated 80,400 people were sacrificed." - BBC History Magazine

"Some conquistadors wrote about the tzompantli and its towers, estimating that the rack alone contained 130,000 skulls. But historians and archaeologists knew the conquistadors were prone to exaggerating the horrors of human sacrifice to demonize the Mexica culture. As the centuries passed, scholars began to wonder whether the tzompantli had ever existed. Archaeologists at the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH) here can now say with certainty that it did." - Science Magazine

"With scant archeological evidence, it is hard to know how many Aztecs died under the sacrificial knife. Many reputable scholars today put the number between 20,000 and 250,000 per year for the whole Aztec Empire." - History On The Net

"How many were sacrificed during that time is a subject of scholarly speculation: some put the figure as low as 10,000 or 20,000, several others put it as high as 80,400 people sacrificed during those four days." - History On The Net (different page)

"To the East of the growing Aztec empire was the city-state of Tlaxcala. The Tlaxcalans were a powerful people who shared their culture and language with the people of the Aztec empire proper. They were closely related with the empire, though never actually conquered by it. An agreement was made with the Tlaxcalans to have ritual battles called xochiyaoyotl, or the flowery wars (commonly called the Aztec flower war). The goal of these battles would not be taking land or killing the enemy, but simply capturing prisoners. The prisoners would then be taken to a temple and sacrificed." - AztecHistory.com

"The gods demanded sacrifices in the form of prisoners captured in war. If the Aztecs conquered everyone, there would be no more war, and therefore no more wartime prisoners. So, the Aztecs made a deal with the nearby city (and longtime rival of Tenochtitlán), Tlaxcala. The cities agreed to come together and fight a special kind of ritual battle that would not be fought for conquest or land. These battles would only be fought for prisoners, who each city could take back and sacrifice to the gods. While the Aztecs would go on to fight flowery wars against other cities as well, Tlaxcala was always their primary rival." -Study.com

@Ozymandias Yeah dw I've heard it all before, though from somewhat better links. Alas this is pretty standard for pop history: this stuff is all pretty old and trite by now: try Townsend's "The Fifth Sun", also "The Broken Spears" and "Mexico: From the Olmecs to the Aztecs" for a good introduction. If you're really into it, and you should be because it's really deep and fascinating stuff, this is my compilation of sources I made while developing a Mesoamerica game elsewhere.
Spoiler :

War and Society in Ancient Mesoamerica by Ross Hassig (1992)
1491: New Revelations of the Americas before Columbus by Charles C. Mann (2006)
Kukulkan's Realm: Urban Life at Ancient Mayapaan by Marilyn Masson
Aztec Archaeology and Ethnohistory by Francis Berdan
Aztec Imperial Strategies by Francis Berdan et al.
The Kowoj by Prudence Rice and Don Rice
The Political Geography of the Yucatan Maya by Ralph Roys
The Quiche Mayas of Utatlan by Robert Carmack
The Chontal Mayas of Acalan-Tixchel by France V. Scholes and Ralph L. Roys
Ancient Zapotec Religion by Michael Lind
Aztec, Mixtec, and Zapotec Armies by John Pohl
Aztec Warfare: Imperial Expansion and Political Control by Ross Hassig
Trade, Tribute, and Transportation by Ross Hassig
The Aztecs by Richard F. Townsend
The Kowoj: Identity, Migration, and Geopolitics in Late Postclassic Peten, Guatemala by Prudence and Don Rice
The Oxford Encyclopedia of Mesoamerican Cultures by David Carrasco
The Postclassic Mesoamerican World by Michael Smith et al
Tariacuri's Legacy: the Prehispanic Tarascan State by Helen Pollard
The Tarascan Civilization: A Late Prehispanic Cultural System by Shirley Gorenstein and Helen Pollard
La Relacion de Michoacan, Craine and Reindorp translation
Greater Mesoamerica: the Archaeology of West and Northwest Mexico by Michael Foster and Shirley Gorenstein et al
Mixtecs, Zapotecs, and Chatinos: Ancient Peoples of Southern Mexico by Arthur Joyce
The Mixtecs of Oaxaca: Ancient Times to the Present by Andrew Balkansky and Ronald Spores
The Annals of the Kaqchikels and the Title of the Lords of Totonicapan, Recinos and Goetz translation
The Native Population of the Americas in 1492 edited by William Denevan
In the Realm of Nachan-Kan: Postclassic Maya Archaeology at Laguna de Oro, Belize
Mexico: From the Olmecs to the Aztecs by Michael Coe
The Huasteca: Culture, History, and Interregional Exchange by Katherine Faust
Prehistoric Warfare in the American Southwest by Stephen A. Leblanc
The Basin of Mexico: Ecological Processes in the Evolution of a Civilization by William T Sanders et. al.
The Historical Demography of Highland Guatemala by Robert M. Carmack
A Forest of Kings: The Untold Story of the Ancient Maya by Linda Schele and David Freidel (1990)
Rethinking the Aztec Economy by Frances Berdan et. al
The cultural evolution of Ancient Nahua Civilizations by William F Fowler
Memoirs of Bernal Diaz del Castillo by himself
Seven Myths of the Spanish Conquest by Matthew Restall
Chimalpahin's Conquest: A Nahua Historian's Rewriting of "La Conquista de Mexico" translated by Susan Schroeder et. al
Political Strategies in Pre-Columbian Mesoamerica edited by Sarah Kurnick and Joanne Baron

Archaeological Investigations in the Rio Sahuaripa Region of Eastern Sonora, Mexico by Dr John Carpenter (Apr 2015)
Isla Agaltepec: Postclassic Occupation in the Tuxtla Mountains, Veracruz, Mexico by Philip J Arnold III
On the external relations of Purepecha: An investigation into classification, contact, and patterns of word formation by Kate Rosalind Bellany
The Political Geography of the Sixteenth Century Yucatan Maya: Comments and Revisions by Anthony P Andrews
Late Postclassic Lowland Maya Archaeology by Anthony P Andrews
Relacion de Zacatula published by R.H. Barlow (Spanish, original 1580)
Causes and Consequences of Migration in Epiclassic Northern Mesoamerica: Toward a Unifying Theory of Ancient and Contemporary Migrations by Christopher S. Beekman
Rethinking Anthropological Perspectives on Migration edited by Graciela S. Cabana and Jeffery J. Clark (2011)
An Historical Sketch of Geography and Anthropology in the Tarascan Region: Part 1 by Donald D. Brand (1943)
Cranial Surgery in Ancient Mesoamerica by Dr. Vera Tiesler Blos
The Tula-Chichen-Tollan Connection by Anthony DeLuca (Apr 2019)
Egalitarian Ideology and Political Power in Prehispanic Central Mexico: The Case of Tlaxcallan by Lane F. Fargher, Richard E. Blanton and Verenice Y. Heredia Espinoza
Tlaxcallan: The Archaeology of an Ancient Republic in the New World by Lane F. Fargher, Richard E. Blanton and Verenice Y. Heredia Espinoza
On the Rise and Fall of Tulans and Maya Segmentary States by John W. Fox (1989)
Aztec Teotihuacan: Political Processes at a Postclassic and Early Colonial City-State in the Basin of Mexico by Christopher P. Garraty (2006)
Tetzcoco in the early 16th century: the state, the city, and the calpolli by Frederic Hicks (1982)
Eastern Chajoma (Cakchiquel) Political Geography: Ethnohistorical and Archaeological Contributions to the study of a Late Postclassic highland Maya polity by Robert M Hill II and Robert M Hill III (1996)
Lord 8 Deer "Jaguar Claw" and the Land of the Sky: The Archaeology and History of Tututepec by Arthur A. Joyce et. al
Native Yucatan and Spanish Influence: The Archaeology and History of Chikinchel by Susan Kepecs (1997)
The Olmec Legacy: Cultural Continuity and Change in Mexico's Southern Gulf Coast Lowlands by Killion and Urcid (2001)
Negotiating Political Economy at Late Postclassic Tututepec (Yucu Dzaa), Oaxaca, Mexico by Marc N. Levine (2011)
The Sixteenth-Century Pokom-Maya: A Documentary Analysis of Social Structure and Archaeological Setting by S.W. Miles (1957)
Chiconautla, Mexico: A Crossroads of Aztec Trade and Politics by Nichols et al. (2009)
Current Research on the Gulf Coast of Mexico by Christopher A. Pool (2006)
The Contact Period of Central Peten, Guatemala in color by Pugh and Cecil (2012)
Tututepec: A Postclassic-period Mixtec conquest state by Ronald Spores (1993)
A Typology of Ancient Purepecha (Tarascan) Architecture from Angamuco, Michoacan, Mexico by Christopher T. Fisher et al. (2019)
Huichol Society before the Arrival of the Spanish by Weigand and Weigand (2000)
Public Health in Aztec Society by Herbert R. Harvey, Ph.D. (1981)
The Archaeology and Ethnohistory of Utatlan: A Conjunctive Approach by Robert Carmack and John Weeks
Aztec Merchants and Markets: Local-Level Economic Activity in a Non-Industrial Empire by Frances F Berdan
Aztec Music Culture by Arnd Adje Both
Costume and Control: Aztec Sumptuary Laws by Patricia Anawalt
The Famine of One Rabbit: Ecological Causes and Social Consequences of a Pre-Columbian Calamity by Ross Hassig
Prehispanic Colonization of the Valley of Oaxaca, Mexico by Linda Nicholas, Gary Feinman, Stephen A. Kowalewski, Richard E. Blanton, and Laura Finsten
The Last Quarter Century of Archaeological Research in the Central Valleys of Oaxaca by Gary M. Feinman
Recent Research in Western Mexican Archaeology by Christopher S. Beekman
West Mexican Metallurgy: Revisited and Revised by Dorothy Hosler
The Major Gods of Ancient Yucatan by Karl Taube
Copper Sources, Metal Production, and Metals Trade in Late Postclassic Mesoamerica by Dorothy Hosler and Andrew Macfarlane
The Study of North Mesoamerican Place-Signs by Gordon Whittaker
The macuahuitl: an innovative weapon of the Late Post-Classic in Mesoamerica by Marco Antonio Cervera Obregon
Long-distance transport costs in Pre-Hispanic Mesoamerica by Robert D. Drennan
Life on the Edge – Identity and Interaction in the Land of Ulúa and the Maya World by Kathryn Marie Hudson & John S. Henderson

For lack of willingness to go point by point for the umpteenth time I'll just swirl thoughts together, hope that's good fam.

The question of to what extent sacrifice was practiced in Mesoamerica is a complicated one, but to start there exist no solid numbers on how many and how often it happened, there are only estimations. The exact number is open to wild speculation even among the Spanish, whose own estimates vary by tens of thousands apart. There are two things that are certain, however: first, human sacrifice is pretty much universal to all Mesoamerican cultures, however only the Aztecs practiced it on a large-scale. Second, despite this being the case, the Aztec hegemony presided over an era of demographic boom and urbanization, indeed it is the Post-Classic Golden Age/Renaissance partly for this reason, spurred by greater interconnectedness in trade along with technological advances in and intensification of agriculture and urban planning. What this means is that the scale of human sacrifice was not demographically significant, so whatever number we come up with has to account for that.

The oft-cited 50,000 a year (the figure given in my high school textbook) and the 80,000 in 4 days thing are strangely common despite being built on strange and questionable grounds logically. The first thing you should know is that the 50,000 a year comes from a flawed premise whereby it was assumed that Mesoamericans, apparently devoid of protein (you know apart from avocados, amaranth, dogs, turkeys, ducks, peccaries, fish, ... just to start) were forced to derive their protein from a very poor source of this nutrient: humans, and so the top 1% controlled 99% of the protein or something by indulging in (ritual) cannibalism on sacrifice victims. The conclusion was that in order to sustain this 1% of the (then estimated to be lower) population would be sacrificed every year. I hope it is immediately obvious why this doesn't make any sense. These are the "reputable scholars" being discussed: dudes from the 50s. Regardless, even if the foundation was sound, 50,000 a year is simply not sustainable. Given the roughly ~20 million people that are commonly accepted to be living in Central Mexico in the early 1500s, and the ~10 million who live in Aztec-dominated territories (a similar population to France at the time), 50,000 a year would see the region depleted of all adult males within a human lifetime. Imagine for a moment that 1400s France has some horrifically catastrophic defeat in war every year, draining 50,000 men each time. We would not be seeing demographic boom, we would see its utter exhaustion. It's an entire medieval England's worth of dead every 50 years. Pretty demographically significant to say the least.

In regards to Flower Wars and the conception people have of Aztec expansionism I'd like to quote a reddit post I made some time ago on r/AskHistorians:
"I don't buy that the Aztecs just allowed Tlaxcallan to exist just for the fun of it - that sounds a lot like historians just taking Aztec propaganda (and the Aztecs are very very good at propaganda) as fact, like we do with the "Toltec Empire" and such like. The Republic of Tlaxcallan managed to survive through shrewd diplomacy and meritocratic martial talent backed by the manpower of impetuous Otomi migrants driven to their enclave as the Aztecs expanded all around them. Tlaxcallan managed legit military victories against the Aztecs that slew many thousands in combat, and they supported and encouraged rebellions in neighboring provinces of the Aztecs, most notably in Cempoallan which was a very unstable region to begin with. Although it is likely that Tlaxcallan would've eventually succumbed just due to attrition, a reality they were evidently keenly aware of, it seems unlikely that given military victory after victory that the Aztecs would've even had an opportunity to capture sacrifices by the thousands either from them or their allies in Huexotzingo (in this case more on-and-off again allies), Cempoallan (whose region was difficult to project power in because of Tlaxcaltec meddling), and Cholollan.

Aside from the depopulation and Mexica resettlement of areas of strategic interest like, for example, the fortress at Oztoman on the Aztecs' Balsas front with the Purepecha, which while brutal is certainly not unique to
the Aztecs and is quite common behavior in the Old World, most places conquered by the empire were valued for their mineral and agricultural resources, especially the Balsas and Tollocan basins. The Aztecs expanded for the same reason every other empire that has ever existed has - control over resources, and this is evident in the imperial strategy and administration they had. Sacrifices on a large scale were part of Tlacaelel's propaganda machine."

Given the fact that the Aztecs were routinely defeated in disastrous campaigns against Tlaxcallan it would appear quite likely that they did not get the opportunity to capture and sacrifice as many of them as they would have liked. Hardly a ritual sacrifice ceremony no? For some reason, people are really apt to just believe Aztec propaganda about the wars against Tlaxcallan. Fargher Blanton and Heredia Espinoza have done some work on this. Please read their work, I can provide the PDFs, among dozens of others (see the list) if you wish. These were wars, and furthermore they were wars the Aztecs repeatedly got their horsehocky kicked in fighting.

Anyway, so what estimate is good then? Well, the Aztecs certainly were unique in doing it on a large scale: on the order of 4,000-6,000 a year, these are the highest reasonable estimates which I'm aware exist - and MANY Spanish observers are inclined to agree, lower numbers are even justifiable. If the tzompantli at Tenochtitlan was indeed as big as the Aztecs said it was, then it took them 100+ years of conquest throughout one of the most densely populated areas in the world at the time to manage it. Something like 75% of these would likely be war captives. The practice of human sacrifice, in its inflated and misunderstood form, is often used as whataboutism and justification by modern people to effectively downplay Spanish atrocities, to speak in favor of colonialism, and more important to dehumanize Mesoamerican peoples: to make them gross, weird, and unrelatable, so the whole ordeal 500 years ago seems more like karmic justice than the actual nightmarish human tragedy that it really was.

EDIT: Also! Regarding cannibalism, it was ritualistic, and outside of ritual it was taboo. We know from 16th century primary sources that in Tenochtitlan after a sacrifice was over and done with the priests would offer the soldier who captured him a chance to partake in what was ultimately a transfer of energy back to the universe. It was an offer the soldier could refuse, and there is documented evidence that it was indeed refused at times. But anyway if he was down then an ounce or so of human meat may be served at his celebratory dinner table later that night amongst a variety of other dishes. An ounce is uh... Not a lot.

Yet this was the only context that cannibalism was acceptable. Consumption of human meat outside of ritual was very taboo. It's said in the relación that Tariacuri got his enemies to fight each other when he set up this elaborate ploy to frame one of them with having served his guests human meat during a party. The guests all excused themselves to vomit when given the news and were so offended by the slight they declared their alliance to be void.
There's nothing that can be disagreed with, this is Mesoamericanist consensus. I'd happily drop the relevant PDFs in your pm box if you want, ivory tower intellectualism is lame, knowledge should be free, etc etc
Well, while you two argue about the Aztecs I have to wonder how Mr. Considon has implemented the quipu system for the Incas.

btw, sorry, Virote, but the only way to win my EFZI game is to eliminate the ‘Mr. Considon’ unit. If I don't win I cannot start checking out your stuff. Sacrifices must be made.
I've played for a few hours so far as the Tairona (because they have the trait combination I like, unpopular opinion I know) impressed with the level of detail. Finally not only get to be the Tairona in a game but also make tumbaga! :goodjob:
Oh, I forgot to say so earlier, but Norse settlers in Greenland could be a Thing™, too. :mischief:
Well, while you two argue about the Aztecs I have to wonder how Mr. Considon has implemented the quipu system for the Incas.

At the moment, I don't I'm afraid.

btw, sorry, Virote, but the only way to win my EFZI game is to eliminate the ‘Mr. Considon’ unit. If I don't win I cannot start checking out your stuff. Sacrifices must be made.


Oh, I forgot to say so earlier, but Norse settlers in Greenland could be a Thing™, too. :mischief:

Unfortunately, quite a bit out of the scope of this mod; due to the hardcoded 31-civ limit, the limit of 5-cultures, the improvement/wonder cap and such, I had to really hem in the geographic and cultural extent which is represented in the mod of the Northern part of the Americas strictly to what is generally considered to be Oasisamerica. Even the nomadic desert tribes which inhabited the same rough geographic region will have to make-do as barbarians and auxiliary units.

Until we get the source code, my friend. Until we get the source code.
By the way, speaking of Tlaxcallan, I've noticed their senatorial republic doesn't appear to be represented as a government form. Were there any plans to that effect?
Oh, I forgot to say so earlier, but Norse settlers in Greenland could be a Thing™, too. :mischief:

Then someone would need to figure out who/what the "Skraelings" (patent pending :D ) were who, um, "consumed" them.
At the moment, I don't I'm afraid.
It's a communications system that has recently been decoded. I could look into it if you like.
Virote_Considon said:
Oh, don't be such a big softie of a lemon, man! You'll respawn next game! And a barrage of artillery is better than being eaten by the Zombies.
Virote_Considon said:
Unfortunately, quite a bit out of the scope of this mod; due to the hardcoded 31-civ limit, the limit of 5-cultures, the improvement/wonder cap and such, I had to really hem in the geographic and cultural extent which is represented in the mod of the Northern part of the Americas strictly to what is generally considered to be Oasisamerica. Even the nomadic desert tribes which inhabited the same rough geographic region will have to make-do as barbarians and auxiliary units.

Until we get the source code, my friend. Until we get the source code.
31 it is then.

You could use the trick used in TAM IIRC where they just made locations be represented in the actual game map by bonus resources to represent cultures, archæological sites, etc.
By the way, speaking of Tlaxcallan, I've noticed their senatorial republic doesn't appear to be represented as a government form. Were there any plans to that effect?
For the record it's Tlaxcala with one l. It's pronounced differently with two l's. Also the x in 16th-century Spanish transliteration is a sh sound. Contemporarily: Kagoshima → Cagoxima.
Then someone would need to figure out who/what the "Skraelings" (patent pending :D ) were who, um, "consumed" them.
Obviously a city-owning barbarian tribe.

With the source code we could have more than one barbarian civ. *sighs wistfully*
Then someone would need to figure out who/what the "Skraelings" (patent pending :D ) were who, um, "consumed" them.
Also on this topic, a ‘Norse world’ scenario is something I've always dreamed of but I've safely diverted it into writing alternate history fantasy, because I know it's a mod I'd never do.
@Takhisis Tlaxcallan is the original Nahuatl referring to the confederation of Tizatlan, Ocotelulco, Tepeticpac, and Quiahuiztlan. I'm aware the name of the modern state (been there too) and Spanish documents call it Tlaxcala, I speak Spanish, thank you :p

tla- "the obvious thing", well not precisely but it's one way to put it succinctly.
-xca- the root, is to flatten.
tlaxcalli = tortilla, the obvious thing that is flattened.
-(t)lan is land of, land abundant in. Tlaxcallan is "land of tortillas". There are some scholars however who think it may have actually been called Texcallan (something like "land of (many) lords", which would be kind of fitting for the senate) and the Spanish are just that inept at transliteration. I prefer Tlaxcallan though.

EDIT: I've played a few hours more as the Moches, made it to the Classic Period, and got to use magic for the first time as El Tajin was built on a mountain and was being a pain to take. Aside from that I noticed quite a few other things I like: even in the equivalent of the middle ages I was dealing with barbarians on occasion (though they have non-Americas names hehe) since their hideouts are in terrain that I can't pass through. So while fighting the Classic Veracruz I kept having to watch out on the opposite flank and more than a few times they got through and sniped a worker or something. It's very thematic, feels very Precolumbian hehe.

The urban planning system is pretty neat in theory but I haven't gotten to play around with it much. Plazas don't feel all that useful to make, but then again I wasn't making any of the "pollution" buildings as, as far as I could tell, most of them increased shield output and I was doing okay on shields. Maybe costs of units could be increased slightly or something, to encourage grabbing those? Or a couple other buildings could do with a bit of pollution. Iunno, guess it's a delicate balancing act.
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