TABLE OF CONTENTS 01. Civilization Analysis 02. National Wonders 03. World Wonders 04. Buildings 05. Social Policies 06. Religion 07. Terrain and Features 08. Military Units 09. Promotions VERSION INFORMATION 3.08 09/24/12 - Expanded civilization analysis section 3.07 07/25/12 - Added articles section and link to Empire Management article 3.06 07/07/12 - Rewrote promotions section 3.05 07/05/12 - Rewrote military units section 3.04 07/04/12 - Rewrote terrain and features section 3.03 06/28/12 - Rewrote buildings and social policies sections, wrote religion section. 3.02 06/25/12 - Rewrote nation wonders and world wonders sections. 3.01 06/22/12 - Begun a massive revision due to the release of Gods and Kings expansion. Rewrote civilization analysis. INTRODUCTION The purpose of this guide to provide all of the information for the game in a text only format, to make it easier to read and compare. While there are other places for this information, those who don't want to have to click menus in game or in websites can simple ctrl-f and find anything you need quickly and easily. I will also provide my commentary about what I think are the best strategies and tactics, although most of these opinions are not wholly my own: I rely upon the civfanatics forums to supplement my ideas and give this guide more credibility. ARTICLES EMPIRE MANAGEMENT: details strategies for tall versus sprawl empires, as well as victory conditions and choices of civilizations, social policies, religious beliefs, and wonders. 1. CIVILIZATION ANALYSIS CIV NAME Ability Name – ability description. Unique Unit - name of unit replaced, modifications to the base unit. Unique Building - name of the building replaced, modifications to the base building. Start Bias - terrain civ starts on the map. Victory Preference - which victory types best suited for. Empire Strategy - how to best manage this civ's empire. This space will give additional information about the civilization. This is just an example as to the format for how to read the information here. The unique units and buildings are interchangeable, as some civs have two unique units, and others even have unique improvements. More information on empire strategy and victory conditions can be found in the Empire Management article. AMERICA Manifest Destiny – All land military units have +1 sight. 50% discount when purchasing tiles. Minutemen - Replaces musketman, ignores movement terrain penalties, free drill 1 promotion. B17 - Replaces bomber, free Evasion and Siege 1 promotions, +5 ranged combat bonus. Start Bias - none Victory Preference - domination. Empire Strategy - sprawling. The American civilization is one who wants to play aggressively. Manifest Destiny combines two mediocre abilities into one, with neither of them having game changing impacts on how to play America. Increasing land unit sight is especially useful for scouting early in the game, but quickly loses its luster once the world has been mapped. It is still helpful while engaging in offensive wars, but only really shines by giving extra sight range for siege units. This still isn’t a terribly good use of the ability though, since it can only be taken advantage of by unescorted siege units, which is always a risky gamble. The discount for tile purchases is nice, but isn’t usually easy to take advantage of. Considering how important culture is for social policies, building at least one or two culture buildings will negate the need to purchase tiles with gold. The main use of this ability is to block off terrain and gain access to resources quickly after building a new city. These two abilities are both at their best when playing aggressively and building a sprawling empire – but are still useful for a tall peaceful empire as well. The unique units support this aggressive playstyle, with the Minutemen able to push through neutral and enemy terrain where you can’t take advantage of roads, and the B17 functioning as an improved late-game city destroyer. ARABIA Trade Caravans – +1 gold per trade route, double oil resources. Bazaar - Replaces market, provides an additional copy of each luxury resource found in the city, +2 gold on worked oil and oasis. Camel Archer - Replaces knight, replaces standard knight attack with 21 ranged combat and 17 melee combat scores. Start Bias - Desert Victory Preference - any. Empire Strategy - any but especially ICS. The Arabian civilization is one with conflicting bonuses. Trade Caravans provides an excellent bonus per trade route, which is best taken advantage of in a sprawling empire. The doubled oil resources are nice, but come late in the game and are best taken advantage of by a tall empire, who has much less terrain to accumulate resources in. The Bazaar again supports a tall empire for much the same reasons as the oil bonus. Luxury resources in this game tend to be clumped together, so a tall empire usually desperately needs to trade resources. The gold bonus on oil and oasis is a nice but negligible bonus. Camel Archers are an unusual unit that functions more like chariots than the knights they replace. Camel Archers provide good support for offensive maneuvers, harassing enemy units from a distance and quickly moving through terrain. AUSTRIA Diplomatic Marriage – Can spend gold to annex or puppet an allied City-State. Coffee House - Replaces windmill, +5% production bonus and +25% great people generation. Hussar - Replaces cavalry, +1 movement, +1 sight, +50% flank attack bonus. Start Bias - None Victory Preference - culture or science. Empire Strategy - sprawling. The Austrian civilization is one with a game changing ability like no other. Diplomatic Marriage is an interesting ability – one that lets you expand your territory without using military and without affecting diplomatic relations with other civs or city-states. This non-hostile takeover comes at a cost though, reducing the number of city-states available for a diplomatic victory. It also seems superfluous if you intend to win via conquest, since you would then simply use your military to gain control of the city-states. That leaves a science victory and a cultural victory types to best take advantage of it. The Coffee House supports this, as it will increase the generation of great scientist and artists. Also keep in mind that using Diplomatic Marriage to take over city-states gives you all the military units they had as well, allowing you to neglect the militaristic technologies as well as devoting production to buildings and wonders. The Hussar is nice but only provides a minor upgrade to a midgame unit used primarily for harassment and proactive defense by taking out enemy units that may be rolling to your gates. AZTEC Sacrificial Captives – Gains culture for each enemy killed. Jaguar - Replaces warrior, +33% combat bonus in jungles and forests, heals 25 health whenever it kills a unit, free woodsman promotion. Floating Gardens - Replaces watermill, reduced maintenance, provides +15% food bonus as well as +2 food bonus from worked lake tiles. Start Bias - Jungle Victory Preference - domination or culture. Empire Strategy - tall. The Aztecan civilization is one of the few civilizations focused on a building up large population cities as well as conquest. Sacrificial Captives provides a great boon to culture generation, and even allows a backup of cultural victory if the conquest route stalls, or to focus on a cultural victory itself while still playing aggressively. Going tall in the early game followed by an extensive puppet empire afterwards brings cohesion with the Floating Gardens. The Floating Gardens greatly increases food generation which leads to an increase in population growth as well. The Jaguar is an interesting unit. It replaces the warrior, but functions much more like a scout early in the game. Thankfully it is not simply a unique scout, as its special abilities carry over through upgrades, and it would be in great interest to produce a great number of these units early in the game. The Jaguar, especially when combined with the opener for Honor, can generate an amazing amount of culture and promotions early in the game by camping barbarian huts, while being able to maintain pressure from the health regeneration. A special note for the Aztecs, in that they have a start bias for jungle, which is simply the best tile in the game once all relevant bonuses and social policies are taken. BABYLON Ingenuity – Receive free great scientist when discovering writing. Earn great scientists 50% faster. Bowmen - Replaces archer, +2 ranged and melee combat bonus. Walls of Babylon - Replaces walls, 10 production cheaper, +1 city defense, +50 city health. Start Bias - None Victory Preference - science. Empire Strategy - any. The Babylonian civilization is one that is heavily focused to a science victory. Ingenuity is one of the best abilities to generate great scientists with. Of course, science is useful for everyone, but great scientists in particular will almost never be generated when going for culture – artists are too important. Diplomatic can use scientists, but is usually more focused on gold and merchants. Domination, however, can definitely take advantage of Ingenuity. The Bowmen make a defensive unit even better, although archers aren’t bad for taking cities very early in the game. The Walls of Babylon are fairly useless though, and will matter far more in the hands of the AI than a human player. BYZANTIUM Patriarchate of Constantinople – Choose one more belief than normal when you found a religion. Cataphract - Replaces horsemen, +3 combat score, -1 movement, reduced city attack penalty, gains defensive bonuses from terrain. Dromon - Replaces trireme, 11 production more expensive, -2 combat score, gains 10 ranged combat score with 2 tile range. Start Bias - None Victory Preference - any. Empire Strategy - any. The Byzantium civilization is one with a lot of flexibility. Patriarchate of Constantinople makes generating a religion that much better, and the belief chosen will depend on what you plan to do during the game. Obviously, Byzantium wants to focus on religion, but what you do from there – and which victory type you go for – are all up to the player. The Cataphract is an interesting unit, as it provides city-taking and defensive bonuses to an anti-unit unit. This makes Caraphracts an all-around useful unit that can be used for any purpose at this stage in the game. Once again, this is increasing the flexibility of Byzantium. Dromon, however, are simply an overall upgrade to the trireme, allowing Byzantium to rule the seas in the early part of the game. Land or sea, the Byzantium is prepared for any sort of engagement. CARTHAGE Phoenician Heritage – All coastal cities get a free Harbor. Units may cross mountains after the first Great General is earned, taking 50 health damage if they end a turn on a mountain. African Forest Elephant - Replaces horseman, 25 production/50 faith more expensive, +2 combat bonus, -1 movement, -10% combat to enemy units that are adjacent, greatly increases great general generation. Quinquereme- Replaces Trireme, +3 combat. Start Bias - None Victory Preference - any. Empire Strategy - sprawling or ICS. The Carthaginian civilization is one devoted to the sea. Phoenician Heritage primarily provides an exceptional bonus to a sprawling coastal empire, especially an ICS empire on a watery map. The second bonus is minor but may come into play a few times a game. An unusual map with many, many mountains may find the ability game breaking, however. African Forest Elephant make great support units for ranged units when attacking enemy cities. The Quinquereme is the most straight forward unique trireme, and arguably the most inconsequential. The bonus isn’t a game changer for naval combat like the Dromon’s can be, but they still help provide a naval defense for an aquatic empire. CELTS Druidic Lore – +1 faith per city with an adjacent unimproved forest, +2 faith per city with 3 or more adjacent unimproved forests. Ceilidh Hall - Replaces opera house, +3 happiness. Pictish Warrior - Replaces spearman, +20% combat bonus outside friendly territory, no movement cost to pillage. Start Bias - Forest Victory Preference - any. Empire Strategy - sprawling or ICS. The Celtic civilization is one that will nearly always be the first to a religion. Druidic Lore allows the Celts to focus on other matters while still guaranteeing a religion. Later in the game it becomes inconsequential, but on high difficulties, it can be the difference between being first or last to a religion, and thus getting the pick of the beliefs. Ceildh Hall provides a strong bonus to an uncommon building. Cultural victories will obviously be building it, but most others neglect the later cultural buildings, at least a first. Buildings with happiness usually allows sprawling empires to flourish, but the fact that it comes later in the game and is an uncommon building built in wide empires makes it a toss-up as to how useful it actually is. Pictish Warrior turns the defensive spearmen into offensive powerhouses. The Celts don’t need iron to go to war. CHINA Art of War – The great general combat bonus is increased by 15%, and their spawn rate is increased by 50%. Paper Maker - Replaces library, +2 gold and no maintenance cost. Chu-Ko-Nu - Replaces crossbowman, may attack twice per turn, -4 ranged combat penalty. Start Bias - None Victory Preference - domination. Empire Strategy - sprawling or ICS. The Chinese civilization is one that wants to sprawl and play aggressively. Art of War improves all your troops by a great general, as well as increasing their generation rate. China is a top tier civ for playing aggressively because of this, and makes great use of citadels due to the excess of great generals. Paper Makers push China to sprawl, and makes China a great civ for an ICS strategy. Chu-Ko-Nu turn the defensive crossbowmen into powerhouses, being nearly as effective as siege units at taking cities do to their double attacks, as well as decimated enemy units. DENMARK Viking Fury - Embarked units have +1 movement, moving from sea to land only costs 1 movement point, melee units pay no movement cost to pillage. Berserker - Replaces longswordsman, +1 movement, free Amphibious promotion. Norwegian Ski Infantry - Replaces rifleman, double movement in snow, tundra, or hill; increased combat score in snow, tundra, or hill without forests or jungles. Start Bias - Ocean Victory Preference - any. Empire Strategy - any. The Danish civilization is one who loves aquatic maps. Viking Fury makes Denmark a hit and run specialist. Ordinary melee units move much faster while embarked, and can target remote settlements, pillaging terrain or razing the city. Denmark has little to gain from fighting defensively, so it’s important to keep the skirmished on enemy terrain. The Berserker plays into the Viking Fury play style by excelling at hit and run tactics, although their quick path to upgrade means they won’t be seen for as long as they could. Meanwhile, the Norwegian Ski Infantry move the hit and run tactics to land. Denmark isn’t given bonuses to engage in constant warfare, so a conquest victory may not be the best choice for Denmark. Using military strategically to weaken the enemy while going for another victory type suits Denmark much better. EGYPT Monument Builders – +20% Production towards Wonder construction. War Chariot - Replaces chariot archer, +1 movement, doesn't require horses. Burial Tomb - Replaces temple, no gold maintained, +2 happiness, double gold from being pillaged. Start Bias - Avoid Jungle and Forest Victory Preference - culture. Empire Strategy - any but especially ICS. The Egyptian civilization is one with bonuses working in opposite directions. Monument Builders can be the difference between building a wonder and not at higher difficulties, and definitely supports a tall empire. Burial Tombs, however, is simply fantastic for a sprawling empire, especially while going ICS. It is almost necessary to go into the Piety social policy tree for this strategy to work with ICS though. The War Chariot may be one of the few reasons to invest in the chariot archer. Since horses are not needed to build them, they can easily be spammed and used to quickly take down enemy units or cities with their high ranged attack score. ENGLAND Sun Never Sets – +2 movement for all naval units, 1 free spy. Longbowman - Replaces crossbowman, +1 ranged. Ship of the Line - Replaces frigate, -15 production cost, +5 melee combat bonus, +7 ranged combat bonus, +1 sight. Start Bias - Ocean Victory Preference - any. Empire Strategy - any. The English civilization is one that is deceptively flexible. Sun Never Sets provides a bonus to naval exploration and warfare, as well as a free spy. Espionage in this game can do many things in this game, from maintaining tech parity to finding who is planning to backstab you. The Longbowman have a simply fantastic bonus, allowing you to pile on ranged damage on units or cities, and it is a bonus that stays with upgrades. Two range Gatling Guns are nothing to scoff at. The Ship of the Line, meanwhile, will allow England to dominate the naval world during the age of exploration. ETHIOPIA Spirit of Adwa – +20% combat bonus when fighting a civilization with more cities. Mehal Sefari - Replaces rifleman, -25 production cost, free Drill 1 promotion, +30% combat bonus when fighting in the capital (bonus reduces as the unit gets farther away) Stele - Replaces monument, +2 faith. Start Bias - None Victory Preference - any. Empire Strategy - any. The Ethiopian civilization is one with conflicting bonuses. Spirit of Adwa is obviously fantastic for a tall empire with only a few cities, although it depends on how much warfare you will engage in while playing for a peaceful victory. Mehal Sefari are interesting, in that they gain a strong defensive bonus near your capital. The real benefit from them is the reduced production cost and free promotion though, as melee units aren’t the best for general defense. The Stele, meanwhile, is an exceptional unique building for a sprawling or ICS empire. For a tall empire trying to take advantage of the Spirit of Adwa, though, the Stele will provide a much reduced benefit. Tall empires usually struggle to generate faith though, so it’s still more useful than it appears. FRANCE Ancien Regime – +2 culture per turn per city before Steam Power. Musketeer - Replaces musketman, +4 combat bonus. Foreign Legion - Replaces great war infantry, +20% combat bonus outside friendly territory. Start Bias - None Victory Preference - culture or domination. Empire Strategy - sprawling or ICS. The French civilization is one whom dreams of world domination. Ancien Regime is best taken advantage of by quickly settling cities early in the game, especially for a sprawling or ICS empire. Unlike most civs that are good for ICS though, France has no immediate bonus like extra happiness or gold per city. Instead, France is looking to the long term by being able to accumulate more policies than most other civs while sprawling. It also will fill liberty the fastest, so it’s not completely at a loss in the early game. Musketeer is a straight forward but appreciable unique unit, giving France a strong siege unit defending and city taking unit. The Foreign Legion gains a bonus that is even more obvious in its intentions. If you’re not trying to conquer the world while playing France, you’re not playing France to its best abilities. GERMANY Furor Tuetonicus – 50% chance to gain free barbarian unit and 25 gold whenever you defeat one in their encampment, -25% maintenance cost of land units. Landsknecht - Replaces pikeman, -45 production cost/ -90 faith cost. Panzer - Replaces tank, +10 combat bonus, +1 movement. Start Bias - None Victory Preference - domination. Empire Strategy - tall. The German civilization is one with its eye to war. Furor Tuetonicus provides a fun way to easily and quickly create an army early in the game, but the long term benefit of reduced maintenance for land units may be the strong part of its ability. The Landsknecht isn’t much to write home about. The reduced production cost is nice, but Germany most likely has it’s fill of basic melee units by taking advantage of barbarian camps with Furor Tuetonicus. The Panzer is very powerful, however, allowing Germany to have domination of the battlefield in that particular era. GREECE Hellenic League – City-State influence degrades at half-rate and recovers twice as quickly. Hoplite - Replaces spearmen, +2 combat bonus. Companion Cavalry - Replaces horsemen, +2 combat bonus, +1 movement, increased great general generation. Start Bias - None Victory Preference - diplomatic. Empire Strategy - any. The Greek civilization is one of the best civs to win diplomatically. Hellenic League is the most straight forward bonus for diplomacy, but it effectively allows Greece to have twice as many city-states as allies compared to other civs. The Hoplite is a powerful upgrade to the basic spearmen, and allows Greece to completely ignore swordsman. The Companion Cavalry provide another powerful upgrade, and is available not long after spearmen. Combined, these units allow Greece to dominate warfare before the middle ages, which can easily snowball into becoming a superpower.