Why have the Boers never made it into a Civ game?

Uncle Paul

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Yes, yes, I know they were in a Civ V scenario (using, bizarrely, Washington as their leaderhead and calling him Paul Kruger, they could have at least used William, since the official language of the Boer Republics was Dutch, Afrikaans only gained official status in the 1900s).
But I'd love to have them in as a full civ. Civ V was a lost opportunity, they could have included them in BNW.
They're a very unique civilization (a Germanic Protestant pioneer culture in the southernmost fringe of Africa) that could have some very interesting gameplay.
Are they omitted for the same reason Tibet is? (i.e. their inclusion could be controversial for political reasons), but that doesn't really make sense. Firaxis could easily sidestep the whole apartheid thing by using Kruger, Pretorius, (Louis) Botha, or even Smuts, all of whom ruled before apartheid became a thing (in fact, Smuts was very anti-apartheid, which is why he lost the 1948 election). And yes, I know, there was some level of racial segregation even before apartheid, but the same is true of Washington's America, and there was never any hesitation about using him as a leader.
So what gives? Does Firaxis only want to do on civ from Southern Africa, and the Zulus are a Civ staple? Keep in mind, the Boer Republics lasted longer and controlled more land than Shaka ever did. Ideally, you could have both the Zulus and the Boers in a civ game, though, might make for some fun scenarios, especially if Victoria is brought back as the British leader and the treacherous Dingaan is the Zulu leader in Civ 7...imagine having Pretorius, Victoria, and Dingaan all with fully animated and voiced leaderheads...you could have a very fun 19th century South Africa scenario.
 
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They're kinda 'failed nations' like The Confederacy mabye.
Even if they ever succeed. If 'Boers' refers to people. then what should the country names be? Zud Afrika? or what?
And one big tarnish in their history is that Apatheid Aristocracy is their thinking.
From what I know the Boers were primarily dutch but also consists of Calvinists from other European countries as well, this could included the Hogernotes (Earlymodern French calvinists). and All in all these were Anti-Catholic folks, and 'Catholics' in thier definition includes English offshots--The Anglicans.
Conflicts in Apatheid era South Africa not only fought on Ethnicity and ideology grounds, but also on the Theological battlefield. Both Catholics and Anglicans earned large numbers of adherents of all races due to their outward and competitive expansions. Something Calvinists couldn't catch up particularly in the last quarter of 19th Century where both Churches, along with other American Protestants established Missions in Sub Sahara Africa and in Asia with significant success, in colonized South Africa, Blacks, as well as Indians and Chinese immigrants are welcome to the said Churches. while Calvinists couldn't turn any Tribesmen to their fold (or if they could turn sume i'm not sure if they did). To this end Catholics and Anglicans were (and still are) Colored sympathy while Calvinists stood with Boer Supremacists. (Especailly with Hugernotes were among the ranks, they never forgive Roman Catholic Church for their 'santified genocide' against them, who gonna forgive an organization that either ordered, or endorsed the great purge where your ancestors were amongs victims?), the hostility are very clear particularly on Angilcan side (Desmond Tutu and a priest who almost killed by mail bomb some 40 years ago) and on Roman Catholic Church, with Pope John Paul II intentionally not visited ZAR in his Continental African Tour in 80s.
The strategic importances of South African Republic means the United States need a firm hand there in the Cold War. With 'Anticommunism' undertones, preferred clients could be anyone that hate and fear the Red Menace. White Supremacists in former colonies are preferred clients and the US of A invested much efforts backing Apartheid Regime even to the point that a Hollywood studio made the Red Scorpion as a pro-Apartheid Anti-ANC propaganda film--deriding Black Africans being BOTH too barbaric to permit to rule modern nation state AND a puppet to (or can only rule with the consent of) Communist Russian (whom also whites). Comparing to headaches they did to The Redcoats in the last quarter of 19th Century (and Churchill's misadventure in his youth). I don't see any reasons FXis would add Boers yet unless there's proper programming mechanisms to represent them correctly in each eras, with the final ones will feature BOTH Blacks, Whites, and Mixed races).
 
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I don't really believe that a European colonial state in Africa would be in high demand, considering the amount of other African civs that haven't even been included yet.
Besides I'd expect probably a South African civ with Nelson Mandela as leader first, though probably not anytime soon either.
 

BuchiTaton

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They're a very unique civilization (a Germanic Protestant pioneer culture in the southernmost fringe of Africa) that could have some very interesting gameplay.
America is pretty much this, USA with Pioneers UU, Saloons UB and the "Land of the Free" CA to exploit an immigration mechanic would give us a round flexible expansionist civ. CIV6 Australia or CIV7 Boers are in this respect a lesser version of the real power.

So what gives? Does Firaxis only want to do on civ from Southern Africa, and the Zulus are a Civ staple? Keep in mind, the Boer Republics lasted longer and controlled more land than Shaka ever did.
I rather have Zimbabwe (Shona) instead of Zulu.

Ideally, you could have both the Zulus and the Boers in a civ game, though, might make for some fun scenarios, especially if Victoria is brought back as the British leader and the treacherous Dingaan is the Zulu leader in Civ 7...imagine having Pretorius, Victoria, and Dingaan all with fully animated and voiced leaderheads...you could have a very fun 19th century South Africa scenario.
There are plenty of civs that could be added as scenario mates like Burma+Siam, Ethiopia+Somalia, Purepecha+Aztec, etc. Beyond have been since CIV1 Zulu does not have a real reason to have a fix slot when are so many good African options included Bantu ones, and I dont even want to talk about have another germanic modern nation, powerfull well designed American, British, Dutch, German and Swedish are all the germanic civs I need thank you.
 

Uncle Paul

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America is pretty much this, USA with Pioneers UU, Saloons UB and the "Land of the Free" CA to exploit an immigration mechanic would give us a round flexible expansionist civ. CIV6 Australia or CIV7 Boers are in this respect a lesser version of the real power.
The Boers have a more interesting culture, though, and great leaders like Pretorius (father and son), Kruger, Smuts (very influential on the world stage in the first half of the 20th century, even was at the wedding of then-Princess Elizabeth [now the recently deceased Queen Elizabeth II, RIP] to Lieutenant Philip Mountbatten [now the recently deceased Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, RIP]), Joubert, de la Rey, de Wet, Cronje, Viljoen, etc...
I rather have Zimbabwe (Shona) instead of Zulu.
Probably too politically controversial to include, but the Rhodesians, led by Ian Smith, would make an interesting civ, especially if you give them a UP that gives bonuses for every civ that has denounced them.
There are plenty of civs that could be added as scenario mates like Burma+Siam, Ethiopia+Somalia, Purepecha+Aztec, etc. Beyond have been since CIV1 Zulu does not have a real reason to have a fix slot when are so many good African options included Bantu ones, and I dont even want to talk about have another germanic modern nation, powerfull well designed American, British, Dutch, German and Swedish are all the germanic civs I need thank you.
Personally, I'm more interested by Germanic cultures than Bantu ones (because I, myself, come from a Germanic culture). The Zulu are a civ staple, and deserve to stay in, for tradition's sake. The Congolese could be interesting (see the Civ 4 RFC mod "Dawn of Civilization" for an example of how they might work), but the only "native African" civs other than those two that interest me are either Mali or Songhai (not both), Nubia (the medieval Christian incarnation), Ethiopia, and possibly the Swahili. We don't need to fill Africa up with obscure civilizations just because Europe is full of well-known civilizations.
 

Quintillus

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The Zulu are definitely a Civ staple, having been in the game since the original. Certainly one can debate whether they should have been one of the original 14, since as you say there are many good alternatives in Africa that arguably were more relevant to a wider area for longer, but at this point the Zulu with Shaka are right up at the top of the list iconic of Civs to play with or against, along with Montezuma of the Aztecs and Gandhi of the Indians. That doesn't necessarily preclude another civ in the same area (see the Byzantines, Ottomans, and Hittites), but it reduces the odds. The Two Sicilies, and even Italy, face a similar challenge with Rome being in the game, for example.

I sense from your location listing and signature that you may be Boer, and are thus coming from the angle of "we're pretty cool too! Maybe not as much of a shoe-in as France, but we should've made one of the games with our own leaderhead by now!" But Firaxis is a U.S.-based company, and in the U.S. the Boers are poorly known, and what is known is generally not positive. So in short, I'd say the reason the Boers haven't made it into a Civ game is the international (and especially North American) image of the Boers is not very positive.

Why? Well, if a North American has heard of the Boers at all, these are probably the top few things that come to mind (accurately or not). They probably are somewhat offensive to a Boer, but there is a lot of ignorance of the Boers too.

Spoiler What Ignorant North Americans Think of when they hear "Boers" :

- "Weren't they the ones in South Africa who started apartheid?" That has been a major problem with the Boer and South African (pre-Mandela) reputation for decades, and is perhaps the most common association with pre-Mandela South Africa and the Boers. Whether the blame should be placed on the Boers or on English South Africa is more nuanced than what the average North American has awareness of.

It also looks bad that apartheid started in the 20th century. It is true that the English colonies in North America and thus the U.S. had slavery, but that started in the 1600s and was abolished in the 1860s. Racism didn't disappear in the 1860s, but "civilized" nations weren't supposed to be going in the directions South Africa was in the 1900s. So apartheid looks pretty bad. And while I'm a bit young to say from firsthand experience, my understanding is that Mandela was very popular in the U.S., and apartheid became quite infamous in the 80s and 90s, the formative years of Civ.

- "Aren't they basically the same as the Dutch?" There's some awareness of Afrikaans as a unique language, but the Boers, the Orange Free State, Transvaal, are all kind of seen as Dutch South Africa, just like New Amsterdam was part of Dutch North America. There is some precedent for former colonies showing up in Civ, more in more recent versions, such as Brazil and obviously the U.S. But I think there's a certain level of distinctness that has to be met; there are simply too many former colonies to include them all. I'm sure many Mexicans would like to see Mexico in a Civ game, for example. Most North Americans know very little of what makes the Boers distinct from the Dutch beyond having lived in South Africa for a long time. Perhaps the Boers do have a more interesting culture than the Americans or Australians, but it is much more poorly known in North America. Even as someone with a minor in history, I know very little about Boer history or culture, except...

- "Weren't they the ones the British fought in the Boer war?" Other than apartheid, this is the one historical event that a typical well-educated North American might think of when the hear the Boers. And they're unlikely to know that the British committed atrocities comparable to what the Spanish did in Cuba to end the war, they're just likely to know that the Boers were the enemies of the British, and due to cultural affinity the late-1800s British tend to receive the benefit of the doubt in North America. Especially when their enemy, fairly or not, is associated in the public mind with apartheid.


Lonecat Nekophrodite seems to know much more than the typical North American about the Boers, and likely more than I do as well.

So... yeah. Realistically I can't see the Boers ever being a top-level civ in Civ. I'm somewhat surprised to learn they were in a Civ V scenario (I wasn't much of a Civ V fan and haven't played it a lot). Is it political? Well, somewhat, but for different reasons than Tibet. If Firaxis included Tibet, China would likely ban sales, and that would cost lost revenue. Firaxis could put the Boers in Civ VII as a base civ, and that wouldn't ban the game in any major markets. But a lot of people, with their knowledge of the Boers being the three points I listed above, or less, would be taken aback by the choice, and many would think it was racist or whitewashing over apartheid. It's political in that it looks bad from a reputational standpoint in a lot of markets, including Firaxis's home market of the U.S.

Spoiler Analogy/The Reputational Problem :
Put another way, the Boers have a similar problem to the Assyrians - they're viewed as bad guys. Assyrians today are still suffering from the reputation their ancestors from before 600 BC gained on the world stage. It's not really fair to today's Assyrians, but when people think of Assyrians they still think of 3000-year-old Assyrian mosaics of what they did to their enemies, which was bad even by the standards of the day. But those Assyrians from 800 BC publicized that bad guy image to intimidate their enemies, and that image stuck very well.

For the Boers, the image that got publicized was as racist apartheid settlers who spoke a variant of Dutch. Bad guys by the standards of late-19th-century colonizers. Maybe not quite the worst (cue Leopold II of Belgium, who was infamous and accused of crimes against humanity even in his own day), but a worse reputation than most. Whether that image is deserved, or whether it advanced/exagerrated by the British in the Boer War, or something else, can be debated, but even assuming it is undeserved, the problem for the Boers would be overturning that perception in other parts of the world that have no more interest in learning about the Boers than they do in learning about the Assyrians.


For that to change, at this point, realistically and at a large enough scale to make a difference, it will probably require the South African government launching a PR/tourism campaign that says, "Hey, the Boers were actually pretty okay, come visit South Africa and learn about their history!" If it's just Boer groups saying that, it's going to be viewed skeptically. As a North American that seems about as far-fetched as the U.S. launching a PR/tourism campaign saying, "The Confederacy actually had a pretty interesting culture, come to the U.S. and learn about Confederate history!" Perhaps that's inaccurate, but I'll believe it when I see the advertising campaign and can verify its source.

----

All that discouraging-to-the-Boers stuff said, you may be interesting in the Age of Imperialism scenario for Civ3, which features the Boers as one of 31 civs on a global map. There's a working download link in post #7750 on the last page, which combined with the BIQ link at https://forums.civfanatics.com/resources/age-of-imperialism-deluxe-1895-1924-v4-0.13684/, should give you a working scenario... or you can download the scenario compilation in my signature which includes Age of Imperialism 4.1 fully packed, and have it set up more easily at the cost of more download bandwidth. It's the only Civ3 scenario I know of which features the Boers.

You might also be interested in the Civ3 story "The Triumph(?) of the Boers: Yet another AoI Story", which uses that scenario or an older version of it, and miraculously is intact after all these years. It's arguably a spoiler if you want to play the scenario, but it's the only Civ3 story I know of featuring the Boers, and was quite successful (from a popularity standpoint) as Civ stories go.
 

Uncle Paul

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Thank you for this thorough and thoughtful response.
The Zulu are definitely a Civ staple, having been in the game since the original. Certainly one can debate whether they should have been one of the original 14, since as you say there are many good alternatives in Africa that arguably were more relevant to a wider area for longer, but at this point the Zulu with Shaka are right up at the top of the list iconic of Civs to play with or against, along with Montezuma of the Aztecs and Gandhi of the Indians. That doesn't necessarily preclude another civ in the same area (see the Byzantines, Ottomans, and Hittites), but it reduces the odds. The Two Sicilies, and even Italy, face a similar challenge with Rome being in the game, for example.
Interesting that Venice made it into Civ 5, though...
I sense from your location listing and signature that you may be Boer, and are thus coming from the angle of "we're pretty cool too! Maybe not as much of a shoe-in as France, but we should've made one of the games with our own leaderhead by now!" But Firaxis is a U.S.-based company, and in the U.S. the Boers are poorly known, and what is known is generally not positive. So in short, I'd say the reason the Boers haven't made it into a Civ game is the international (and especially North American) image of the Boers is not very positive.
Interesting that Americans having a negative view of the Boers is tolerated in a way that Americans having a negative view of many other ethnic groups isn't. I'm not going to go further with this, since I know that I'm not supposed to bring modern politics into this, though, but I did want to make that observation.
Many Boer leaders showed great courage and character, including Christina Pretorius, the wife of the great Andries Pretorius. In 1848, she was dying of malaria, and Andries had been called to lead the Boers in a righteous rebellion against the British, yet he didn't want to leave his wife's deathbed, but she said to him: "Go, Andries, go, your countrymen need you. For me, there is now no more you can do"
Andries led his people into battle, but sadly, he and his brave hearts were beaten by the British. When he came home, Christina was gone. But he never stopped fighting for his people's freedom, and after he died, his eldest son, Marthinus Wessel Pretorius (pictured below), became leader of the South African Republic.
image.jpg
Why? Well, if a North American has heard of the Boers at all, these are probably the top few things that come to mind (accurately or not). They probably are somewhat offensive to a Boer, but there is a lot of ignorance of the Boers too.

Spoiler What Ignorant North Americans Think of when they hear "Boers" :

- "Weren't they the ones in South Africa who started apartheid?" That has been a major problem with the Boer and South African (pre-Mandela) reputation for decades, and is perhaps the most common association with pre-Mandela South Africa and the Boers. Whether the blame should be placed on the Boers or on English South Africa is more nuanced than what the average North American has awareness of.

It also looks bad that apartheid started in the 20th century. It is true that the English colonies in North America and thus the U.S. had slavery, but that started in the 1600s and was abolished in the 1860s. Racism didn't disappear in the 1860s, but "civilized" nations weren't supposed to be going in the directions South Africa was in the 1900s. So apartheid looks pretty bad. And while I'm a bit young to say from firsthand experience, my understanding is that Mandela was very popular in the U.S., and apartheid became quite infamous in the 80s and 90s, the formative years of Civ.

- "Aren't they basically the same as the Dutch?" There's some awareness of Afrikaans as a unique language, but the Boers, the Orange Free State, Transvaal, are all kind of seen as Dutch South Africa, just like New Amsterdam was part of Dutch North America. There is some precedent for former colonies showing up in Civ, more in more recent versions, such as Brazil and obviously the U.S. But I think there's a certain level of distinctness that has to be met; there are simply too many former colonies to include them all. I'm sure many Mexicans would like to see Mexico in a Civ game, for example. Most North Americans know very little of what makes the Boers distinct from the Dutch beyond having lived in South Africa for a long time. Perhaps the Boers do have a more interesting culture than the Americans or Australians, but it is much more poorly known in North America. Even as someone with a minor in history, I know very little about Boer history or culture, except...

- "Weren't they the ones the British fought in the Boer war?" Other than apartheid, this is the one historical event that a typical well-educated North American might think of when the hear the Boers. And they're unlikely to know that the British committed atrocities comparable to what the Spanish did in Cuba to end the war, they're just likely to know that the Boers were the enemies of the British, and due to cultural affinity the late-1800s British tend to receive the benefit of the doubt in North America. Especially when their enemy, fairly or not, is associated in the public mind with apartheid.


Lonecat Nekophrodite seems to know much more than the typical North American about the Boers, and likely more than I do as well.
And of course, Mandela is a bit too recent to really make it as a Civ leader for a while, same reason that HM Queen Elizabeth II (may she rest in peace) is unlikely to make it in, despite being the most iconic British leader for modern people.

If the British hadn't annexed the Boer Republics (free, self-governing states with the right to exist), there would have been no apartheid.

I'm not even sure if most Americans would associate 19th century republican Boers with 20th century figures like Dr. Verwoerd (who was actually from the Netherlands). South Africa never called itself a Boer country during apartheid, and since the language isn't called Boer, many Americans might not realize the connection.

The British may receive the benefit of the doubt in America today, but many Americans were supportive of the Boers in their own time, although sadly, no nation came to the military aid of the Boer Republics, which lost their freedom forever, and are likely to never return, unfortunately.

So... yeah. Realistically I can't see the Boers ever being a top-level civ in Civ. I'm somewhat surprised to learn they were in a Civ V scenario (I wasn't much of a Civ V fan and haven't played it a lot). Is it political? Well, somewhat, but for different reasons than Tibet. If Firaxis included Tibet, China would likely ban sales, and that would cost lost revenue. Firaxis could put the Boers in Civ VII as a base civ, and that wouldn't ban the game in any major markets. But a lot of people, with their knowledge of the Boers being the three points I listed above, or less, would be taken aback by the choice, and many would think it was racist or whitewashing over apartheid. It's political in that it looks bad from a reputational standpoint in a lot of markets, including Firaxis's home market of the U.S.
I think Civ V is better than Civ VI, for sure, less cartoony graphics, less of a mobile game looking interface, Civ VI was harder to learn to use compared to the earlier iterations, etc...I don't care for the unstacked cities, either.
I hope Civ VII makes a return to beautiful Civ that aims for photorealism, and a scrapping of the unstacked cities. Essentially, I want a graphically stunning game that blends the best of Civ V, IV, and III (please bring back leaders changing suits by era)
Spoiler Analogy/The Reputational Problem :
Put another way, the Boers have a similar problem to the Assyrians - they're viewed as bad guys. Assyrians today are still suffering from the reputation their ancestors from before 600 BC gained on the world stage. It's not really fair to today's Assyrians, but when people think of Assyrians they still think of 3000-year-old Assyrian mosaics of what they did to their enemies, which was bad even by the standards of the day. But those Assyrians from 800 BC publicized that bad guy image to intimidate their enemies, and that image stuck very well.

For the Boers, the image that got publicized was as racist apartheid settlers who spoke a variant of Dutch. Bad guys by the standards of late-19th-century colonizers. Maybe not quite the worst (cue Leopold II of Belgium, who was infamous and accused of crimes against humanity even in his own day), but a worse reputation than most. Whether that image is deserved, or whether it advanced/exagerrated by the British in the Boer War, or something else, can be debated, but even assuming it is undeserved, the problem for the Boers would be overturning that perception in other parts of the world that have no more interest in learning about the Boers than they do in learning about the Assyrians.
I'm not sure about the Assyrian reputational thing. I've met barely anyone who knows anything about Assyrians (outside of Civ games), and as far as I can tell, what is most discussed about Assyrians is their WWI genocide at the hands of the Turk, their modern statelessness, and the fact that ISIS threatened them a few years ago.
And the Assyrians did, after all, make it into Civ V with no complaints from anyone.
For that to change, at this point, realistically and at a large enough scale to make a difference, it will probably require the South African government launching a PR/tourism campaign that says, "Hey, the Boers were actually pretty okay, come visit South Africa and learn about their history!" If it's just Boer groups saying that, it's going to be viewed skeptically. As a North American that seems about as far-fetched as the U.S. launching a PR/tourism campaign saying, "The Confederacy actually had a pretty interesting culture, come to the U.S. and learn about Confederate history!" Perhaps that's inaccurate, but I'll believe it when I see the advertising campaign and can verify its source.
Well, the Second Boer War (more properly the Second Freedom War) and the American Civil War (aka "War Between the States") have many similarities.
Both were wars between two competing groups of White people in a region that had been settled by Whites starting in the 17th century. Both were followed by a reconciliation between the two sides that didn't really include the local Black people. Both produced a lot of "romantic heroes" who became larger-than-life figures, especially on the losing side (i.e. Lee, de la Rey, etc...)
All that discouraging-to-the-Boers stuff said, you may be interesting in the Age of Imperialism scenario for Civ3, which features the Boers as one of 31 civs on a global map. There's a working download link in post #7750 on the last page, which combined with the BIQ link at https://forums.civfanatics.com/resources/age-of-imperialism-deluxe-1895-1924-v4-0.13684/, should give you a working scenario... or you can download the scenario compilation in my signature which includes Age of Imperialism 4.1 fully packed, and have it set up more easily at the cost of more download bandwidth. It's the only Civ3 scenario I know of which features the Boers.
Thanks! Do you have any idea if there's a working version of the "East Asia Mod" for Civ 3 that I can download? The one I downloaded from the later pages of that thread is very buggy.
You might also be interested in the Civ3 story "The Triumph(?) of the Boers: Yet another AoI Story", which uses that scenario or an older version of it, and miraculously is intact after all these years. It's arguably a spoiler if you want to play the scenario, but it's the only Civ3 story I know of featuring the Boers, and was quite successful (from a popularity standpoint) as Civ stories go.
Thanks, maybe the Boers can triumph yet in the 21st century? Who knows.​
 

Quintillus

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I should also note that it is likely that 80% or more of Americans aren't aware of the Boers at all. Most Americans don't have a great understanding of geography or history, though among Civ players the average understanding will be higher. But the curriculum also tends to be U.S.-centric, especially for relatively modern history; what country doesn't emphasize its own history? What I remember of the outlines of what I learned about the 1860s to 1910s in high school history, in rough chronological order - and I'll note that I had very good high school history classes, most had worse/more boring classes:

- U.S. Civil War. Huge topic.
- Reconstruction in the U.S., continued oppression of blacks in the South via Jim Crow laws, political corruption in the late 1800s (Boss Tweed and co)
- A passing mention of the Spanish-American war. Basically, "The Maine blew up in 1898 and we fought Spain and gained Cuba and the Philippines, both of which we made free." Very few details, doesn't mention that we were hardly any better than the Spanish to the Cubans and Filipinos, maybe worse in the case of the Filipinos.
- Russo-Japanese War got a passing mention in European History class, the Decembrists rising up against the Tsar (but failing)
- World War I. Also a big topic, including the parts before U.S. involvement.

So... a lot of details are left out. I'm not sure I knew about the Boers beyond perhaps having heard the name until becoming a bit curious after hearing about the Boer War via Civ3. Outside of Egypt and Carthage, the third-most-prominent aspect of history in Africa covered by U.S. history classes is probably the Portuguese explorations in the time of Henry the Navigator. Very little is covered about how Africa wound up the way it is today.

I'd love it if history classes were good enough in both quality and breadth that Boer and Congolese and Tibetan history were all well-known here, not because I'm an enthusiast for any of those nations but because if that were the case we'd have really good history education. Unfortunately, that isn't realistic. Even if I were magically able to add one extra well-taught class to the curriculum across the country, I'd have to start with something more basic like civics or financial literacy.

---

Which "East Asia Mod" do you mean/can you post a link?
 

Uncle Paul

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I should also note that it is likely that 80% or more of Americans aren't aware of the Boers at all. Most Americans don't have a great understanding of geography or history, though among Civ players the average understanding will be higher. But the curriculum also tends to be U.S.-centric, especially for relatively modern history; what country doesn't emphasize its own history? What I remember of the outlines of what I learned about the 1860s to 1910s in high school history, in rough chronological order - and I'll note that I had very good high school history classes, most had worse/more boring classes:
I just don't see why the Boers can't get a week in history class, the way it seems that Arab caliphates (not even western history, no more relevant to the US than the Boers) do in American schools. (I remember reading a post on here long ago before I made an account from some American poster about how his high school had spent a week or so talking about Mohammed, his followers, his caliphates, etc..., might have been in the RFC Sword of Islam subforum)
- U.S. Civil War. Huge topic.
I understand why American schools focus on this, personally, I think the Boer Wars are more interesting and relevant to the world.
- Reconstruction in the U.S., continued oppression of blacks in the South via Jim Crow laws, political corruption in the late 1800s (Boss Tweed and co)
It's almost funny, in a bitterly ironic sort of way, that the people whose ancestors created Jim Crow think they have the right to judge the Boers for apartheid, and keep in mind that slavery in South Africa ended several decades before slavery in North America.
- A passing mention of the Spanish-American war. Basically, "The Maine blew up in 1898 and we fought Spain and gained Cuba and the Philippines, both of which we made free." Very few details, doesn't mention that we were hardly any better than the Spanish to the Cubans and Filipinos, maybe worse in the case of the Filipinos.
I can see why this would be taught, the most relevant fact about the Spanish-American War, at least for me, is that it led to the creation of the song "Goodbye, Dolly Gray", which became a Boer War anthem over in England.
- Russo-Japanese War got a passing mention in European History class, the Decembrists rising up against the Tsar (but failing)
Didn't the Boer Wars get any mention in European History class, since they involved the British Empire? The world's greatest empire got its butt kicked by a rag tag army of God-fearing farmers back in 1881, surely, that's more interesting than memorizing all 1,000 HRE principalities...
And as for the Second Boer War, the only reason Britain won is because they kidnapped Boer women and children and killed them in concentration camps (this is where a certain 20th-century European leader got the idea from, although he took it "up to eleven" and killed even more people), so yes, the Boer Republics surrendered to spare the lives of those imprisoned in the camps, and those who were POWs on Ceylon's distant shore. But as John Edmond said, "they know if they didn't capture the ones we hold dearest that we, the rag tag army would have driven them into the sea."
- World War I. Also a big topic, including the parts before U.S. involvement.
Highly relevant, especially since it sadly led to the end of the Old Europe of Kings and Emperors and replaced them with inferior leaders such as Hitler, Mussolini, Stalin, Macmillan, etc...
So... a lot of details are left out. I'm not sure I knew about the Boers beyond perhaps having heard the name until becoming a bit curious after hearing about the Boer War via Civ3. Outside of Egypt and Carthage, the third-most-prominent aspect of history in Africa covered by U.S. history classes is probably the Portuguese explorations in the time of Henry the Navigator. Very little is covered about how Africa wound up the way it is today.
This surprises me a little, I would think the most prominent aspect of African history in US history classes is that Africa is where the slaves came from.
I'd love it if history classes were good enough in both quality and breadth that Boer and Congolese and Tibetan history were all well-known here, not because I'm an enthusiast for any of those nations but because if that were the case we'd have really good history education. Unfortunately, that isn't realistic. Even if I were magically able to add one extra well-taught class to the curriculum across the country, I'd have to start with something more basic like civics or financial literacy.
Fair enough.
Which "East Asia Mod" do you mean/can you post a link?
 

BuchiTaton

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I just don't see why the Boers can't get a week in history class, the way it seems that Arab caliphates (not even western history, no more relevant to the US than the Boers) do in American schools.
The Caliphates controled and/or converted Iberia, North Africa and the Levant that used to be Roman Christian domains, expanded the Islam to Persia, Central Asia and the Indus Valley from were Turkic peoples also converted, so leading to Ottomans, Mughals, introduction of Islam to Anatolia, Caucasus, Balkans, Sahel, East Africa and Indonesia.
The Crusades and the naval quest for new routes to the East Asia were european actions directly related to the legacy of the Caliphates and of course someone must be blind and deaf to not see the importance of North Africa, Middle East and Central Asia in recent decades for American and European geopolitics.

I understand why American schools focus on this, personally, I think the Boer Wars are more interesting and relevant to the world.
Interesting is subjetive, but relevant clearly not.
 

Quintillus

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Arabia and the formation of Islam does get some time. But roughly 30% of the world's population is Muslim. By comparison, that makes the Han Chinese look like a small part of the world's population, let alone any other ethnic group.

Involving the British Empire was not sufficient for a war to be part of history class, although the that may be different in the UK, or in the Commonwealth. The Dervish wars of the 1880s weren't mentioned, most of Britain's conflicts in India weren't mentioned (although the Sepoy Mutiny of 1857 may have been). The Suez Crisis wasn't mentioned despite its importance in signifying the end of British hegemony.

We definitely didn't memorize HRE principalities, either. The high-level structure got some coverage, particularly around the time of Barbarossa, but later on only Austria and Prussia received any coverage. The Prussian unification of Germany can be added to the list of 1860 - 1920 topics an advanced European history class in a U.S. high school would cover.

The Triangle Trade and slave ships coming from Africa is definitely part of the curriculum, but at least when I was in school we didn't get much into the "why", either why Europeans sought slaves in Africa, or why the local rulers often cooperated.

---

I don't personally have anything more on the East Asian mod beyond what's in posts #189 and #191 of that thread. It's possible (but not guaranteed) that the AtomicGamer file may be in the Internet Archive backups, and if so it's possible but not guaranteed that it's less buggy than the version you found/the one in the thread. Unfortunately some mods are simply buggy... if we do get around to restoring the AtomicGamer version successfully I'll post in that thread, but I've been focused on other projects lately.
 
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I just don't see why the Boers can't get a week in history class, the way it seems that Arab caliphates (not even western history, no more relevant to the US than the Boers) do in American schools. (I remember reading a post on here long ago before I made an account from some American poster about how his high school had spent a week or so talking about Mohammed, his followers, his caliphates, etc..., might have been in the RFC Sword of Islam subforum)
I understand why American schools focus on this, personally, I think the Boer Wars are more interesting and relevant to the world.
I mean from personal experience trying to cram all of World History into roughly 36 weeks (a typical school year at least where I'm from), there are definitely going to be parts that are barely covered, or not covered at all.
It's much easier to spend more weeks on something like the U.S. Civil War, in a separate U.S. History class in the same amount of time.
 

Uncle Paul

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The Caliphates controled and/or converted Iberia, North Africa and the Levant that used to be Roman Christian domains, expanded the Islam to Persia, Central Asia and the Indus Valley from were Turkic peoples also converted, so leading to Ottomans, Mughals, introduction of Islam to Anatolia, Caucasus, Balkans, Sahel, East Africa and Indonesia.
The Crusades and the naval quest for new routes to the East Asia were european actions directly related to the legacy of the Caliphates and of course someone must be blind and deaf to not see the importance of North Africa, Middle East and Central Asia in recent decades for American and European geopolitics.


Interesting is subjetive, but relevant clearly not.
The Caliphates had a predominately negative impact on the world. Imagine if Persia had gotten to keep its actual ancestral Zoroastrian religion, imagine if North Africa and the Levant were still Christian domains that spoke a Latin or Greek language, there would be a lot less war in those regions, and entire cultures would not have been extinguished by the caliphates.
The Crusades, yes, but the quest for roots to East Asia, not really. It would have been the same if Russia had controlled Constantinople...as long as the land routes to the east were controlled by hostile powers (even if they were still Christian, like Russia), Western Euros would have likely gone looking for sea routes.
No sea trade with Asia, no Cape Colony, no Boers. :(
Arabia and the formation of Islam does get some time. But roughly 30% of the world's population is Muslim. By comparison, that makes the Han Chinese look like a small part of the world's population, let alone any other ethnic group.
Yes, but neither Muslims nor Boers are a demographically significant population in the US. IIRC, like 1-2% of the US population currently is Muslim, the vast majority recent immigrants, so it's not like Mexican history (I think that something like 15% of the US population is of Mexican descent).
Involving the British Empire was not sufficient for a war to be part of history class, although the that may be different in the UK, or in the Commonwealth. The Dervish wars of the 1880s weren't mentioned, most of Britain's conflicts in India weren't mentioned (although the Sepoy Mutiny of 1857 may have been). The Suez Crisis wasn't mentioned despite its importance in signifying the end of British hegemony.
The Boer War is more likely to captivate American audiences than some conflict with Dervishes or Sepoys, seeing as it has parallels to the American Civil War.
We definitely didn't memorize HRE principalities, either. The high-level structure got some coverage, particularly around the time of Barbarossa, but later on only Austria and Prussia received any coverage. The Prussian unification of Germany can be added to the list of 1860 - 1920 topics an advanced European history class in a U.S. high school would cover.
Not even Bavaria, Neuschwanstein, and the (apparently insane) king Ludwig II?
The Triangle Trade and slave ships coming from Africa is definitely part of the curriculum, but at least when I was in school we didn't get much into the "why", either why Europeans sought slaves in Africa, or why the local rulers often cooperated.
Interesting.
I don't personally have anything more on the East Asian mod beyond what's in posts #189 and #191 of that thread. It's possible (but not guaranteed) that the AtomicGamer file may be in the Internet Archive backups, and if so it's possible but not guaranteed that it's less buggy than the version you found/the one in the thread. Unfortunately some mods are simply buggy... if we do get around to restoring the AtomicGamer version successfully I'll post in that thread, but I've been focused on other projects lately.
Thanks for checking, I remember it working like 12 years ago, when it had the original download still there. It was a cool mod.
 

BuchiTaton

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The Caliphates had a predominately negative impact on the world.
Point missed. American learning about the Caliphates is not about if their legacy was positive or negative, but about the magnitude of their impact. Something that yourself already expanded. Also about their world impact compared to Boers ones that is by far lesser.

Imagine if Persia had gotten to keep its actual ancestral Zoroastrian religion, imagine if North Africa and the Levant were still Christian domains
So Zoroastrian to Islam is bad but the many religions replaced by Christianity is OK?

that spoke a Latin or Greek language,
Or Aramaic, Berber, Coptic, etc... Imagine is the key word, I like to have more unique civs that started in acient times with really different languages and religions to build a narrative since the very beginning of civilization. Recent redundant options like Boers are the opposed to this.

there would be a lot less war in those regions, and entire cultures would not have been extinguished by the caliphates.
Like if european christians were not killing each other for centuries including millions of them less than 100 years ago, and right now Ukranians and Russians two nations that are closely related are still doing it. :sad:
Also, should we also forget the mess of the colonial partition of Middle East and the geopolitics of both the Cold War and recent years?

The Crusades, yes, but the quest for roots to East Asia, not really. It would have been the same if Russia had controlled Constantinople...as long as the land routes to the east were controlled by hostile powers (even if they were still Christian, like Russia), Western Euros would have likely gone looking for sea routes.
No sea trade with Asia, no Cape Colony, no Boers. :(
Arab expansion greatly weakened the Byzantines hindering the recuperation of Roman territory therefore played a role in the later Great Schism.
Islam for sure changed history in a massive degree, that justify learning about it not just in America but all around the world.
 

Patine

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Yes, yes, I know they were in a Civ V scenario (using, bizarrely, Washington as their leaderhead and calling him Paul Kruger, they could have at least used William, since the official language of the Boer Republics was Dutch, Afrikaans only gained official status in the 1900s).
But I'd love to have them in as a full civ. Civ V was a lost opportunity, they could have included them in BNW.
They're a very unique civilization (a Germanic Protestant pioneer culture in the southernmost fringe of Africa) that could have some very interesting gameplay.
Are they omitted for the same reason Tibet is? (i.e. their inclusion could be controversial for political reasons), but that doesn't really make sense. Firaxis could easily sidestep the whole apartheid thing by using Kruger, Pretorius, (Louis) Botha, or even Smuts, all of whom ruled before apartheid became a thing (in fact, Smuts was very anti-apartheid, which is why he lost the 1948 election). And yes, I know, there was some level of racial segregation even before apartheid, but the same is true of Washington's America, and there was never any hesitation about using him as a leader.
So what gives? Does Firaxis only want to do on civ from Southern Africa, and the Zulus are a Civ staple? Keep in mind, the Boer Republics lasted longer and controlled more land than Shaka ever did. Ideally, you could have both the Zulus and the Boers in a civ game, though, might make for some fun scenarios, especially if Victoria is brought back as the British leader and the treacherous Dingaan is the Zulu leader in Civ 7...imagine having Pretorius, Victoria, and Dingaan all with fully animated and voiced leaderheads...you could have a very fun 19th century South Africa scenario.
There is also a Civ2 scenario with them in it, but that scenario is specifically about the Boer War, and the map, civilizations, units, terrain, and limits on improvements and Wonders, as well as time span, is restricted around that concept, like a lot of Civ2 scenarios are.
 

pineappledan

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I rather have Zimbabwe (Shona) instead of Zulu.
seconded.
Put another way, the Boers have a similar problem to the Assyrians - they're viewed as bad guys. Assyrians today are still suffering from the reputation their ancestors from before 600 BC gained on the world stage. It's not really fair to today's Assyrians, but when people think of Assyrians they still think of 3000-year-old Assyrian mosaics of what they did to their enemies, which was bad even by the standards of the day. But those Assyrians from 800 BC publicized that bad guy image to intimidate their enemies, and that image stuck very well.
It's more likely the negativity around Assyria comes from their portrayal in the Bible, where they destroyed the northern kingdom of Israel and nearly destroyed Judah, but were stopped by an act of divine intervention. The Bible contains various portrayals of the Assyrians as:
  • People so horrible and cruel that when god tells one of his prophets to spread His message there, he flees in the opposite direction out of spite (Jonah)
  • Wholly deserving of their destruction at the hands of the Medes (Nahum)
Interesting that Americans having a negative view of the Boers is tolerated in a way that Americans having a negative view of many other ethnic groups isn't.
The Boers aren't an ethnicity.
 

Patine

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The Boers aren't an ethnicity.
It's arguable they have significantly linguistically and culturally deviated enough from the Dutch ethnicity to form a new ethnicity. Someone I used to work with who had strong ties to the Netherlands, culturally, and two Dutch parents, certainly believes such a deviation, ethnically, has definitely occurred, and he describes Afrikaans to a Dutch-speaker as highly idiomatic, "Yoda speech," to make it relatable to English speakers, there.
 

Evie

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It seems to me from what I can find out that Afrikaaner is the ethnicity, where Boer is a political movement within that ethnicity and the distinction between them being participation in the Great Trek
 

Uncle Paul

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Point missed. American learning about the Caliphates is not about if their legacy was positive or negative, but about the magnitude of their impact. Something that yourself already expanded. Also about their world impact compared to Boers ones that is by far lesser.
Fair enough, but can you at least admit the Boer Republics were a noble endeavour, and a force for good, unlike the Caliphates?
So Zoroastrian to Islam is bad but the many religions replaced by Christianity is OK?
The primitive pagan cults of pre-Christian Europe hardly count as real religions, and I say that as someone whose ancestors must have followed those cults 2000 years ago (since I'm of mostly Northern European descent). I'm grateful that Christianity supplanted them, and the vast majority of people descended from their followers are, too.
Or Aramaic, Berber, Coptic, etc... Imagine is the key word, I like to have more unique civs that started in acient times with really different languages and religions to build a narrative since the very beginning of civilization. Recent redundant options like Boers are the opposed to this.
I like a mix of both, since it's nice to have the staples from Antiquity, but it's harder for a modern person to feel a connection to the Gothic tribes (no, the goth subculture isn't the same thing), the Huns, the Sumerians, etc...
How are the Boers "redundant"? As I have established, Boer =/= Dutch. We have the Byzantines coexist with the Greeks and Romans, we have Spain, Portugal, France, and Venice coexist with the Romans, we have Germany coexist with Austria or the HRE depending on which iteration of Civ it is, we have Sweden coexist with the Danish Vikings in Civ V, we have Australia, Canada, America and the UK coexist in Civ VI, we have Canada and France coexist in Civ VI, we have Babylon and Sumeria coexist in Civ III, we have Babylon and Assyria coexist in Civ V.
If the Boers and Dutch are really mutually exclusive, just use the Boers instead of the Dutch. The Boers are a lot more relevant in the post-1800 period than the Dutch.
Like if european christians were not killing each other for centuries including millions of them less than 100 years ago, and right now Ukranians and Russians two nations that are closely related are still doing it. :sad:
I didn't say there would be no war, I said there'd be less.
Also, should we also forget the mess of the colonial partition of Middle East and the geopolitics of both the Cold War and recent years?
If Mustafa Kemal hadn't interfered with the Treaty of Sevres, the Middle East would be a much better place today.
Arab expansion greatly weakened the Byzantines hindering the recuperation of Roman territory therefore played a role in the later Great Schism.
Islam for sure changed history in a massive degree, that justify learning about it not just in America but all around the world.
Yes, but it was a mostly negative impact on the world, whereas the Boers produced some of the greatest medical advances (Dr. Barnard) and statesmen (General Smuts) of the 20th century.
I know people who are Armenian, Assyrian, Jewish, and Levantine Christian...absolutely none of them have a positive opinion of the caliphates, or the expansion of Islam. This may sound harsh, but I wish that Islam had never militarily expanded out of its birthplace in the Arabian Peninsula. If people wanted to voluntarily adopt it, that's fine, but I don't like what Mohammed did...spreading it by the sword to a vast chunk of the earth.
There is also a Civ2 scenario with them in it, but that scenario is specifically about the Boer War, and the map, civilizations, units, terrain, and limits on improvements and Wonders, as well as time span, is restricted around that concept, like a lot of Civ2 scenarios are.
Interesting...I never played Civ 2, how hard is it to learn if I only know 3,4,5? Could a modern computer even play it?
seconded.

It's more likely the negativity around Assyria comes from their portrayal in the Bible, where they destroyed the northern kingdom of Israel and nearly destroyed Judah, but were stopped by an act of divine intervention. The Bible contains various portrayals of the Assyrians as:
  • People so horrible and cruel that when god tells one of his prophets to spread His message there, he flees in the opposite direction out of spite (Jonah)
  • Wholly deserving of their destruction at the hands of the Medes (Nahum)
You're right, I think.
The Boers aren't an ethnicity.
Then neither are WASPS, African-Americans, Pennsylvania Dutch, French Canadians, Cajuns, etc...
 
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