Discussion in 'Civ5 - General Discussions' started by The Kingmaker, Mar 22, 2010.
Moors aren't a people, you're confusing with Berbers. Al-Mansur was Arab.
Charles V. of the HRE is not the Frankish Charles living hundreds of years earlier!
I partly agree to your definition of a Civ, for instance I see a point in adding an amalgam Civ for South america like Alex suggested, since they see themselves as one culture (at least those I spoke to).
In your logic, France and England are Civs, because there's a nation left nowadays with a national identity. But some hundred years ago, they didn't feel as much as a nation. Nationalism is a fairly new concept, born around the french revolution and its aftermath.
I admit, middle european history is more complicated than in western europe. But there was a big empire on the maps of all those years that cannot be counted into germany!
And while the Austrian/Habsburg Empire had no clear national identity, I would call it a strenght, not a weekness. A lot of people/players nowadays could identify with it. We all know what happened later when the Austrians lost their Habsburg traditions and found a replacement in Nationalism - it was the rise of a notorious scumbag...
By the way, to merit my sig, I don't suggest that Austria is the most important Civ on Earth, but please don't count us into Germany, it's like throwing together the Irish with the British...
@Alexzander My main distinction for India is not between Indus/Ganges, but but Mughal's and hindus.
Your argument that "most westerners would think it was fine" is somewhat odd, considering your other candidates that most westerners have never heard of. I think "most westerners" have heard of the Mughal Empire (Taj Mahal and all that).
But besides, how come you get separate civs for Moors and Arabs? Or for Celts and France and Germany and HRE and Vikings and England?
I would say "Al-Andalus" would be better than "moors".
I think the idea of Maori is neat, but problematic. First, they didn't live in cities, they lived in relatively small villages, and migrated seasonally to different sites for food sources.
Second, they didn't really have any technological development to speak of. The one great polynesian technology (sailing/navigation - truly amazing) was really lost by the time that Maori in New Zealand became their own established separate culture - they didn't keep trading with the islands, and lost their inter-continental navigation skills. They didn't have a written language, they had no tools beyond wood and stone.
Maori certainly qualify as having a rich culture, but were really not much past hunter-gatherer before European intervention.
[Also, are we sure that there weren't some fairly treatment-as-equals treaties between the French and indigenous peoples in Canada that predate Waitangi?]
How about the Etruscans? And Pontus? Perhaps something Illyrian?
I would suggest a few more from Africa.
Kongo and Zimbabwe have already been mentioned, I would also suggest Ashanti and/or Benin and/or Kanem-Bornu.
Each are quite different from anything other civ, and all were at one point regional powers.
Of course none have been world powers, so wouldn't be in a list of the very top civs, but they weren't insignificant in their day either, and add a bit more diversity as well.
I know. But The Frankish Charlemagne or Charles I is the leader of the HRE in civ4. The only reason for the HRE to exist in civ seems to be to give Charlemagne a civ to lead. (Putting him as a leader of Germany or France would cause problems.)
My logic is not about national identity, but cultural identity. The first notion of an English people, I think, appeared in the late dark ages.
I think there is probably also a good case to be made for an Austrian civ. Whether it merits a place in the game, that is more difficult mainly because the list of civs is already very euro-centric.
Assuming we're thinking of the same scumbag, aren't you sort of counting Austria into Germany yourself? He was Austrian-born, but he certainly identified as German.
The whole idea of having a German unified nation was the idea of him and his followers. He hated the multinational Vienna that existed before his reign.
Absolutism is not the nicest form of government either, but the individual culture of the nations belonging to the Austrian empire was not really supressed. They "only" had to accept the authority of the emperor. And well, there was forced catholizism. But the idea that the german-speakers within Austria-Hungary were genetically superior to the other peoples did not yet exist. The Austrians were protectors from the Turks, and often well-remembered for building infrastructure, so I do believe that other people/players in the region could identify with Austria-Hungary. And I believe it was more than just a part of the German/HRR culture, but has a multicultural tradition in its own right, being a bridge between east and west.
Example - City names:
Vienna, Budapest, Prague, Lwow, Graz, Triest, Zagreb, Brno, Sarajewo,... most of them aren't German in any way!
Article 19 of the 1867 "Basic State Act" (Staatsgrundgesetz), valid only for the Cisleithanian (Austrian) part of Austria–Hungary, says:
All races of the empire have equal rights, and every race has an inviolable right to the preservation and use of its own nationality and language. The equality of all customary languages ("landesübliche Sprache") in school, office and public life, is recognized by the state. In those territories in which several races dwell, the public and educational institutions are to be so arranged that, without applying compulsion to learn a second country language ("Landessprache"), each of the races receives the necessary means of education in its own language.
The concept of nationalism caused so much suffer in recent history that I wouldn't want to make it the main deciding factor concerning which civ should be in the game.
I agree Austria doesn't have the long tradition of Britain, but an islands natural borders always make it easier to be seen as one entity by the world, it also keeps away migration and invaders (like the Huns).
Overall, this discussion gets far more detailed than I wanted it to be! I just wanted to tell the OP that not all German-speaking countries in history can be summed up as "German Civ" as easily as he did it. Hell, take the Swiss! They are so unique in their history, they could make a Civ of their own! And, as I hopefully made clear, Austria-Hungary is not only about the Austrians, hence the name.
I'm not interested in pushing Austria between the first 30/40/50 civs in the importance ranking, I hate those threads. Outsiders are better suited to judge the importance of an empire.
It would be charming to see us in an expansion, nevertheless!
They might have been lumped together by the Romans but they themself did not brand themself as Germans. They were (similar to the Celts) extremly divided in various tribes which did constantly fight each other.
Btw if you lump all germanic tribes together then your 'Germany' includes the USA (setlled mostly by English and German people), Scandinavia and England.
Once again there are tons of responses to make, so please excuse my brevity.
Tomice and Rowain deWolf: I honestly don't think so. I am a German citizen with ancestors from throughout the Empire of the Habsburgs, and I have a degree in medieval European history, and I am quite content with there only being a German civ. Again, it's not about "Germany" the nation-state, which has only existed since 1871, but about the "Germanic civilization," which has existed for hundreds of years. Before Bismarck, "Germany" was a loose term used to refer to the vast continental territory populated by Germanic peoples, including modern Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Austria, and Prussia. An Englishman living in that time period might refer to anyone of those as a "Dutchman," a corruption of "Deutsch."
All the German-speaking nations can indeed be swept up into "German civilization." It is unfortunate that the name of the civilization shares its name with one of the nation-states that belong to it, but I imagine that was Bismarck's intent; to seize the legacy of the entire civilization for Prussia alone. Regardless "Germany" the country and "Germany" the civ represent different things, the former being just a part of the latter.
Austria was just another German principality (among very many) until Bismarck cut them out of his united Germany to avoid his Hohenzollerns having to share power with Hapsburg rivals. Thus the idea of a separate Austria only dates to 1871. It's only in the last 50 years or so where people have tried to dissociate themselves from the idea of being "German" because of what the man with the little mustache did.
It is very possible to be culturally German without belonging to a German nation. There have been so many political entities that have ruled in the region, most of them with ludicrous names (Holy Roman Empire? Really? It was neither Holy, Roman nor an Empire), yet they were always a part of German civilization.
Rowain's assertion that England, France and Scandinavia would be included in German civilization due to the wide definition is not really accurate. The Anglo-Saxons, Franks and Norse broke away from the other Germanic tribes long before the HRE ever even existed, and mingled with other local non-Germanic tribes to form their own civilizations.
As for the other non-German cultures living on the fringe that were dominated by various German states for much of their history, I wouldn't have a problem with them being represented if there was an adequate way to do so. However, I don't think they merit inclusion in the top 50. The Holy Roman Empire, however, in no way represents a separate civilization or culture from the German civilization, and it does a disservice to those smaller cultures to only represent them under a second German-based civ.
Phew, sorry for the long-winded answer. That was far deeper into that subject than I wanted to delve. Let's end the discussion on that now. Anyway, this thread is not about German civilization, so let's try to move back to the original point: what other civs belong?
Trias: You make a very good point. Thanks for clarifying. It is helpful to understand what exactly constitutes a "civilization" in order to understand what is "civworthy." I also agree that the HRE should not be a Civ. I'll not restate my reasons for thinking so (just see above).
Iván de España: Moors may not be a people, but they were most definitely a civilization. See here. The Berbers were a part of it, the Spanish Arabs, a few Spanish Christians living under them, al-Andalus was a political incarnation of it. "Moorish" is simply the most familiar term.
Ahriman: My point is that the Mughals do not represent a separate civilization, only a dynasty from a different civilization that was ruling India at the time. The Mughals represent both an aspect of Islamic/Arabic civilization and Mongol civilization, but they ruled India. Indian workers built their monuments, Indian people were their subjects. When determining if something is an independent civilization, you cannot think of the ruling class only. Most westerners do not think of the Mughals at all - they think of the Taj Mahal as being Indian, and if they know of the Mughals, they think of them as the dynasty that built the Taj Mahal in India. It's "Civilization," not "Dynasty."
As for your analogies, I find them just a little bit insulting. Celts/France/Germany/HRE/Vikings/England are not the same civilization. (Well, Germany and HRE are. [see above] ) Just because Britain was variously dominated by different factions of different races throughout its history does not mean that England should get more than one civ (nor would I assert such a thing). The Celts are an amalgam civ, which includes all Celtic people throughout history, not just those in Britain. And fancy not including France just because a Norman dynasty ruled the English for a while! The Normans weren't even really French! Bah. It's not worth my time to argue that. Maybe I'm taking offense where none is intended.
"Al-Andalus" by definition cannot be a civilization, as it is a political entity. "Moors" is not the most accurate name for them, but it is the most recognizable.
I agree with you on the Maori. I think they're too difficult to incorporate.
Junuxx: I had considered the Etruscans, Pontus and Illyria, but they're all too small and limited in scope to make the top 50, not to mention their similarities to existing civs, (especially Etruria).
702: I had considered those. Kongo is I think the best candidate from among them but it is difficult to implement. Great Zimbabwe is not possible because we cannot provide a leader or UU for them, or even a city list. As for Ashanti, Benin and Kanem-Bornu, I think they're all too small or minor to include on their own, and I don't want to do them the disservice of clumping them together in an amalgam.
Alright everyone, there's my responses. Sorry they're longer than I planned. Now in future I think we should try to focus more on new civs (original intent) and less on ones that are already in the game.
Thankfully there is one thread in this forum where intelligent discussion can be had about various civilizations and isn't derailed by morons.
Keep up the good work Alezander01.
Thank you very much.
kush could work as an african civ, but that might be covered by ethiopia/egypt.
48. Gran Colombia grates me a little -the European colonies in the New World are very recent phenomenon, and I'm not sure referring to them as unique civilizations makes all that much sense.
That said, if Gran Colombia is in, then Canada should be probably be as well.
1)While there have been North American civilizations before (Two of them - Natives in their various incarnations, and America), none of them have ever covered the immense territory north of the 49th. The Native Americans have been centered on the US tribes, and America, of course, has always been the United States.
2)Present-day English Canadian culture, in and of itself, is probably not distinct enough to warrant inclusion in a game that already has both America (for English colonies in the New World) and English (for Commonwealth culture) civilizations, the same cannot be said for Canada's French culture, which is just as distinct from European French culture as Gran Colombia is from Spain, or America from England - perhaps in some ways more distinct. Moreover, Canada, as a name, predates the current country - and was initially applied to the largest, most important of the French colonies in the new world (which became the modern province of Québec).
3. Without going into assorted inventions and cultural contributions, I will point that French-Canadian explorers carried out an enormous portion of western exploration of inland North America, long before Lewis & Clark, and that they carved out an empire, centered on French Canada (although under theoretical French control) that stretched from the Hudson Bay to the Gulf of Mexico and from the Atlantic to the Rockies.
4. Desirability depend on how it's done. If Canada is treated a joke civ, with a XXth century leader, the Maple Leafs flag, and a Mountie unique unit, it probably won't be taken seriously, and people will resent the inclusion.
If, on the other hand, Canada is treated as a serious civ, given an earlier political leader (perhaps one of the leaders from the 1837-38 rebellions, or perhaps Samuel de Champlain) as well as a suitable UU (a "Coureur des bois" - fast-moving musketeer, or combat-capable explorer, perhaps...or a fast worker ala India), then I see no reason why it should not be treated as an interesting and cool civ by the fanbase.
All THAT said, I still think Gran Colombia and Canada are borderline ideas to include (...in a fourth or fifth expansion...) at best, and at worst just plain not among the worthy. But if Gran Colombia is, then Canada should certainly be as well.
Trias: You make good points. The traditional definition of a civilization, AFAIK, is that it has to have writing, calendar, surplus food, cities, and government. Just from that, a lot of what the franchise calls Civs are out -- Native Americans, for example.
the problem is that canada's never really done anything important. gran columbia, though i'd prefer brazil, was pretty important on the world stage for about a decade or two. canada, not so much.
As I noted earlier, Canada was the third western power in importance during much of World War II, the most successful of the three on D-Day (eg, the Canadian beach was the only one where the allies actually met their Day 1 objectives), was instrumental in solving the Suez crisis and implementing modern peacekeeping, and Canadians (or rather, Canadiens - and yes, they refered to themselves as such) did a very large part of the exploration of interior North America.
In addition, Canada has also been a top-10 world economy (and thus a powerful nation) for the past several decades.
Gran Colombia was a relatively powerful nation for a decade or two.
If these two are not at least comparable, then I don't know what is. (But again, let me stress: I feel that both are extremely marginal...at best. Brazil is largely in the same boat, for that matter.)
And my point is that they certainly are a different civilization. Their empire included Afghanistan, bits of modern Iran, Pakistan, most of modern India, modern Bangladesh, Nepal etc.
The Mughual empire was founded by the *Timuruds*, it wasn't just another Indian dynasty.
Its like saying that the Byzantine Empire and the Ottoman Empire were just different dynasties that controlled the same area.
Then what makes something qualify as a "Civilization", rather than a Dynasty?
On what grounds?
Let me try to explain the point. At one point in history, the Roman Empire controlled all of Western Europe. At other points in history, separate parts were controlled by separate entities. The leaders of some of the entities conquered and controlled or migrated to other entities. Saxon migration to England, Viking conquests in England, Norman conquest in England, etc.
It so happens that in modern times these are separate nations (or no longer exist).
Vs South Asia. At point in history, the Mughal Empire controlled most of South Asia. At other times, these were a bunch of separate and independent Kingdoms, with their own languages, cultures, history, leaders and cities; in other words, their own Civilizations.
How can you call the former a bunch of separate Civilizations, but claim that the latter are all the same Civilization dominated by different dynasties? Why do England and France and the Netherlands count as individuals with their own culture, but Punjabis and Marathas and Mysore and so forth all just count as "Indian"?
Because they happen to be unified today? They weren't for most of their history.
It seems incredible to think that European Kingdoms count as separate Civilizations, but South-Asian Kingdoms do not. It seems that you present no argument for this except that they are unfamiliar to westerners. Is that really a good reason?
England and France and Germany and China and Spain and.... are political entities. Therefore they cannot be Civilizations?
Your logic seems inconsistent.
Oh its so not covered by Portugal... but i wont even get started.
Some people would get really angry at reading statements like those, or like 'canada has never really done anything important'. You guys should exclude nations from your list with a little more care/respect, or some guy from Micronesia could come here, flame on this topic and get it closed, and that would be a shame. Most "MY NATION isnt in civ??" topics are very ridiculous, this one at least is interesting.
Well, it's true that Canada has "never done anything really important" compared to France or America or any of the big countries. There's no question that the world history impact is not even on the same scale. The same can be said of Brazil and Gran Colombia.
It's also quite arguable that Canada could be considered covered by England/France, Brazil by Portugal and Gran Colombia by Spain.
But the moment you include one of the three; the moment you say *one* is not covered by their colonial motherland, then you simply can't dismiss the other two as "less important" - either all three are worthy, or all three are not.
Separate names with a comma.