Moving on... 23. America Manifest more destiny America's always had a problem with having later games uniques and thus not being impactful. It still exists in this game, but at the very least they get +5 combat on their home continent. This makes early barbs and invasions much easier to deal with and guarantees some consistency. Yes, you might land on a map with weird splits in continents, but early war is not a problem for America, and even without resources, Oligarchy warriors will still get 29 strength if they're on the continent. Unlike other continent abilities, having a strong effect at the start is always a good thing. If they didn't need more reasons to take Oligarchy, they also get a normally useless diplomatic card changed into a wildcard. Potala Palace also becomes a 2nd forbidden palace. If they hit a dark age for some reason, they can even stack up on twilight valor and Oligarchic Legacy, which is something only Greece and Poland can really do. Of course, without war, America's a lot less effective, and their other abilities aren't impressive. National Parks are already really expensive, so having them give a bit of tourism doesn't help, and the Rough Rider has to be hard build. The film studio requires rivals to be in the modern era, and beyond that, it's just a generic Broadcast Center that has poor value anyways. So it's pretty much reliant on those 2 early abilities. Thankfully, they're good enough to keep them relevant. 24. Brazil To chop or not chop Brazil has a strong ability in that they can get high adjacency bonuses with rainforests. Now that adjacency bonuses matter more, this is a bigger deal. The problem is that you wouldn't be chopping them for production, and maintaining that sort of balance is very hard and you may probably never have that dilemma with any other civ. The Great Person bonus isn't as good as it seems, because you need to actually get a great person first, and thus does nothing to help you catch up. It can help a bit with snowballing. Plus they keep getting more expensive, so it's sometimes not really 20% towards your next Their unique entertainment districts are pretty good, and running the street carnival may be a better way of great engineers than building those awful IZs, though you need IZs to activate some of them; fortunately none of the good ones require this so this requires you to look at the Great Person screen. The Minas Geraes is extremely powerful and despite the late appearance, it is still a battleship that comes too early to be reasonable. A single one can change control of the sea easily. They're not bad and much better than people give them credit for, as they just require a very different approach though I suppose they don't really have anything that special besides the Minas Geraes. 25. Zulu Impi countdown As the only civ that's completely focused on military, Zulu's main problem is actually getting to their bonuses as they get almost no help there. Their Ikhanda's a good district and will help you get great generals but with no early defense or economic bonuses, you'll most likely be behind longer. Fortunately, their early corps can help them break out, and if they lack resources, the Impi corps may help as well. The extra loyalty can help with conquest, and later on, those armies are utterly devastating, with only Aztecs and Mongols able to compete. With that, they can quickly turn into a domination victory, but it does require a lot of effort to have this setup. They can definitely be very strong, but the oppurtunity window is especially unforgiving. 26. Poland Basically Spain, minus the useless. Poland's got a bunch of strange abilities, though some do work better than others. The military to wildcard slot isn't really a bonus early on since military cards are so important that they get used anyways, though you can always opt for a religion.... they're honestly not very good at that though. The culture bombing ability isn't really worth building encampments or forts, though some really cramped situations can make use of it. It's probably just easier to attack anyways. They can do the Oligarchy/Twilight Valor thing though. The Sukiennice is a great building, able to allow you to balance out your trade routes. Unless you have no food or can't secure safe trade routes, Poland should probably be trading exclusively externally for that nice production boost. It does take a while to actually get those things in place though. Forming an alliance could really help as well. The Winged Hussar is very powerful. It is expensive though, but chopping some out to follow up a knight attack or something will definitely deal the killing blow and basically allows you to skip musketmen. The timing for it is really late, but it's actually viable. They also get some crap about relics or Holy Sites, which is as worthless as always. Doing stuff as Poland probably requires a different approach, but they can do it.