Civilization VI Starter Guide – Leaders, City-States, Turns, Neighbors, Natural Wonders, Advanced Strategies

Civilization VI Starter Guide to help you get familiarized with the world of the game as well as politics, war, culture, etc.

Whether you are new to the franchise or have played earlier iterations, there is something for everyone since a lot has changed in Civilization VI.

For more help on Civilization VI, read out our Strategies Guide, Leaders Guide, and City Layout Guide.

Civilization VI Starter Guide

In our Civilization VI Starter Guide, we have discussed everything you need to know about basics of politics, war, culture, tech., etc.

Choosing a Leader

There are multiple leaders to choose from. With each leader, you get exclusive bonuses, buildings, units, and tile improvements. Each leader also has one explicit agenda and a hidden agenda. Throughout the course of the game, you can get information about other leaders and direct your relationship with them.

The following list names all the leaders in Civilization VI.

  • Teddy Roosevelt – America
  • Montezuma – Aztec
  • Qin Shi Huang – China
  • Cleopatra – Egypt
  • Hojo Tokimune – Japan
  • Victoria – England
  • Catherine de’ Medici – France
  • Pedro II – Brazil
  • Frederick Barbarossa – Germany
  • Tomyris – Scythia
  • Philip II – Spain
  • Gandhi – India
  • Mvemba a Nzinga – Kongo
  • Harald Hardrada – Norway
  • Pericles – Greece
  • Trajan – Rome
  • Gilgamesh – Sumeria
  • Saladin – Arabia
  • Peter – Russia

The First Turn

After you are done with all preliminaries, you should be able to jump into the game with a Settler and a Warrior or a Scout. You should consider settling near a river to get continuous access to water or near a coast with resources like rice, wheat, bananas, etc. Each of these should provide you with +1 food which can be helpful to grow citizens at a faster rate.

You will be required to choose a tech. from pottery, animal husbandry, mining, astrology, or sailing. Apart from that, you will also need to choose your first production or a permanent item i.e. a building or a unit. With the exception of Rome, you can build a Monument in order to enhance your culture – Rome gets this for free.

Lastly, you should also consider sending a unit out in order to explore the world around you.

Subsequent Turns

As your Warrior or Scout, you need to continue exploring and try to find different types of resources i.e. strategic resources, lurxury resources, and bonus resources. You should also be able to come across city-states, natural wonders, and other civilizations.

While exploring, it is important that you deal with Barbarian Scouts who, if left alone, can cause serious trouble. One of the most things to come across is Tribal Villages which can provide maps, gold, technologies, etc.

Neighbours and Natural Wonders

As you proceed through the game, you will need to develop relationship with your neighbours and city-states. As mentioned earlier, each leader in the game has agendas which you need to completely understand to develop a relationship – peaceful or aggressive. If you wish to survive for a long period of time, you must understand both explicit and hidden agendas.

Wonders, on the other hand, can trigger a city-state’s quest actions and gran the unit, which discovered them, with bonus XP. One of the most important things about natural wonders is an adjacency bonus to Holy Site Districts which allows all adjacent tiles to receive +2 appeal. This is something huge for Tourism.

Lastly, remember that a few natural wonders can be moved or worked like the Pantanal to get +2 food and +2 culture. You simply need to make sure that you build around them before anyone else.


These independent nations – of you and rival civilizations – have their own political affiliations and other things. If you manage to discover a city-state for the first time, you get the ability to have an envoy with it. You also get envoys for completing city-state quests and through the natural course of the game which can be sent to a city-state that you like.

A civilization that has sent 3 or more envoys becomes Suzerain and earns a bonus unique to that city-state. It is important to remember that a city-state cannot have more than one Suzerain at any given time. Some of the benefits of being Suzerain include access to resources, additional gold, following a civilization into war/peace, and more.

  • Religious – Faith Bonuses in the Capital and at Holy Site Districts
  • Trade – Gold Bonuses in the Capital and at Commercial Hub Districts
  • Scientific – Science Bonuses in the Capital and at Campus Districts
  • Militaristic – Production Bonuses in the Capital and at Theater Square Districts
  • 20px Cultural – Culture Bonuses in the Icon Capital.png Capital and at Theater Square Districts
  • 20px Industrial – Production Bonuses in the Capital and at the Industrial Zone when building Wonders, Buildings or Districts

Understanding Advanced Concepts

As you progress through the game, you will have to consider concepts like housing, food, etc. Every city has a housing limit after which population starts to grow slowly or start declining altogether. In order to increase housing, you must build next to water sources.

Amenity is another important concept that you need to take care of. There is no longer global happiness in the game as it is replaced by amenity which is happiness at a local level. With the sole exception of initial two citizens, you are required to have 1 amenity for 2 citizens.

It is important to remember that the Capital starts with 1 amenity, but the subsequent cities have 0 amenity at start. There are multiple methods to boost amenity which include luxury resources, great people, entertainment, civics, religion, and national park. You should also note that war sickness and bankruptcy boosts negative amenity.

You can also find some more important concepts in a details after the break.

It goes without saying that gold in the game is required to change policies, upgrade units, and purchasing all sorts of things.

You gather science per turn which is dependent on things like buildings, natural wonders, great people, tile improvement, etc. Depending upon the amount of science, the era you are in, and tech. you are following, you should be able to research technology. There is also the Eureka! bonus which basically renders the technology you are researching 50% easier.

Culture is also accumulated per turn, however, the important thing to take note of is the new Civics tree. This basically allows you to unlock new forms of government, get new policy cards, etc. When it comes to policies, you can choose from four different variations i.e. military policies, wildcard policies, economy policies, and diplomacy policies.

This one is also accumulated per turn and allows you to gain access to a Pantheon which provides bonuses to the entire empire. Faith can be used in order to get units like apostle, great people, etc. If 50% of the cities in a civilization follows your religion, you should be able to get a Religious Victory.

There are a total of 12 types of districts in Civilization VI and provide different boosts and play different roles. These are acquired by tech. and require 3 citizens per district. Another important thing that you need to understand is that some buildings can only be be constructed in specific districts.

This is all we have on Civilization VI Starter Guide. If there is anything else you would like to add, let us know in the comments section below!

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