Civ 4 had cultural borders that initially defined the workable tiles of the city, but soon after extend beyond to represent the land influenced (claimed) by the civ. The civ 5/6's inability to control an area unless you have a city near it leads to lots of annoying problems: Strategic/luxury resources that pop-up between your cities, or in inhospitable areas are uncollectible(in civ 4 you could collect anything in your cultural borders) AI settles within your future city limits (while this could happen in civ4 too, the window of opportunity was a dozen turns or so, not nearly the entire game) Or between your cities No national borders is unrealistic and unimmersive Think of the US, Canada, Russia, or China; huge tracts of land where you could easily fit cities. Obviously this doesn't happen because nations have borders; land that is claimed but not necessarily developed. Civ 5/6 is utterly incapable of representing this; it behaves more like your Civilisation is nothing more than a collection of disconnected city states, not a cohesive nation. Besides 1upt, I feel this is the biggest regression in the franchise post-civ4, and I'm disappointed civ6 didn't do anything to rectify it.