Here’s all of Civilization 6’s game speeds, map types and difficulty settings (and what they do)

Civilization 6 options

Civilization VI came out ten days ago and, at least according to our review, it’s rather good. We know what you want though: raw data. There are many ways to play Civ 6, with a new double-time game speed alongside the map types you’d expect, such as continents and pangaea. We can also tell you exactly what happens to the AI when you choose a different difficulty setting. Read on for more details on all of it.

Just how good, bad or indifferent is it? Check out our Civilization VI review.

Let’s kick off with how hard it can get, eh.

Civilization 6 difficulties

Civilization 6 difficulties

Game difficulties are the same in Civ 6 as in its predecessor, at least in name. Each of these settings will adjust the behaviour and in-game advantages of the AI to make things easier or harder for you.

Settler

  • Resource production:
    • AI receives +0% to all.
  • Combat and XP scaling:
    • AI receives -1 in combat, player receives +3.
    • AI receives +0% to unit XP, player receives +45%.
  • Research boosts:
    • AI receives no free Tech or Civics boosts.
  • Starting units:
    • AI receives 1 Settler and 1 Warrior at the start of the game, same as the player.
  • Barbarian camps award 45 gold when cleared.

Chieftain

  • Resource production:
    • AI receives +0% to all.
  • Combat and XP scaling:
    • AI receives -1 in combat, player receives +2.
    • AI receives +0% to unit XP, player receives +30%.
  • Research boosts:
    • AI receives no free Tech or Civics boosts.
  • Starting units:
    • AI receives 1 Settler and 1 Warrior at the start of the game, same as the player.
  • Barbarian camps award 40 gold when cleared.

Warlord

  • Resource production:
    • AI receives +0% to all.
  • Combat and XP scaling:
    • AI receives -1 in combat, player receives +1.
    • AI receives +0% to unit XP, player receives +15%.
  • Research boosts:
    • AI receives no free Tech or Civics boosts.
  • Starting units:
    • AI receives 1 Settler and 1 Warrior at the start of the game, same as the player.
  • Barbarian camps award 35 gold when cleared.

Prince

  • Resource production:
    • AI receives +0% to all.
  • Combat and XP scaling:
    • Neither AI nor player receive a bonus to combat or to unit XP.
  • Research boosts:
    • AI receives no free Tech or Civics boosts.
  • Starting units:
    • AI receives 1 Settler and 1 Warrior at the start of the game, same as the player.
  • Barbarian camps award 30 gold when cleared.

King

  • Resource production:
    • AI gets +8% to Science, Culture and Faith, +20% to Production and Gold.
  • Combat and XP scaling:
    • AI receives +1 in combat, player gets nothing.
    • AI receives +10% to unit XP, player gets nothing.
  • Research boosts:
    • AI receives 1 free Tech and Civics boost.
  • Starting units:
    • AI receives 1 Settler and 2 Warriors at the start of the game, and receives a free Builder when it builds its first district.
  • Barbarian camps award 30 gold when cleared.

Emperor

  • Resource production:
    • AI gets +16% to Science, Culture and Faith, +40% to Production and Gold.
  • Combat and XP scaling:
    • AI receives +2 in combat, player gets nothing.
    • AI receives +20% to unit XP, player gets nothing.
  • Research boosts:
    • AI receives 2 free Tech and Civics boosts.
  • Starting units:
    • AI receives 2 Settlers, 3 Warriors and 1 Builder at the start of the game.
  • Barbarian camps award 30 gold when cleared.

Immortal

  • Resource production:
    • AI gets +24% to Science, Culture and Faith, +60% to Production and Gold.
  • Combat and XP scaling:
    • AI receives +3 in combat, player gets nothing.
    • AI receives +30% to unit XP, player gets nothing.
  • Research boosts:
    • AI receives 3 free Tech and Civics boosts.
  • Starting units:
    • AI receives 2 Settlers, 4 Warriors and 2 Builders at the start of the game.
  • Barbarian camps award 30 gold when cleared.

Deity

  • Resource production:
    • AI gets +32% to Science, Culture and Faith, +80% to Production and Gold.
  • Combat and XP scaling:
    • AI receives +4 in combat, player gets nothing.
    • AI receives +40% to unit XP, player gets nothing.
  • Research boosts:
    • AI receives 4 free Tech and Civics boosts.
  • Starting units:
    • AI receives 3 Settlers, 5 Warriors and 2 Builders at the start of the game.
  • Barbarian camps award 30 gold when cleared.

As you can see, Prince is normal difficulty; it’s the “fair” mode where the AI isn’t programmed to do anything proper silly and starts on a level with the player. At lower difficulties it will play more passively, being less likely to declare war on you, and will have penalties applied to its resource production and combat performance.

At higher difficulties, however, the AI takes advantage of your every mistake as far as it can, and gets bonuses that quickly ratchet up to absurdity. Three free Settlers and+80% Productionon Deity?! Forget about getting any Wonder, ever.

Civilization 6 game speeds

Civ 6 game speeds

From here, we get more exact descriptions. Here’s what speeds you can play at in Civ 6, and what each means:

  • Online – double-speed game used for online multiplayer.
  • Quick – 33% faster.
  • Standard – Normal speed game.
  • Prolonged – 50% slower.
  • Marathon – 200% slower.

Online is presumably part of Firaxis’ attempts to more readily employ Twitch for showing off their game. Double speed isn’t exactly going to turn it into a Zerg rush, but you should be able to finish games in one sitting without staying up way past bed time.

Civilization 6 map types

Civ 6 map types

This is where it gets a bit more complicated. First, there’s how big you want the map to be:

  • Duel – 2 players
  • Tiny – 4 players
  • Small – 6 players
  • Standard – 8 players
  • Large – 10 players
  • Huge – 12 players

Then, broadly what you want the landmasses to look like – with images from this Reddit thread.

  • Continents – A few large landmasses.

Continent map type

  • Fractal – Unpredictable map that can result in one or many landmasses.

Fractal map type

  • Inland Sea – One large ocean in the center of the map.

Inland sea map type

  • Island Plates – Islands ranging in size from small to large.

Island Plates map type

  • Pangaea – One massive landmass with surrounding islands.

Pangaea map type

  • Shuffle – “What secrets will this map reveal?” is the official description – it will give you a more random map than the others.

So far, so easy. Beyond that, there’s more specific options:

  • World Age – how much time for erosion of mountains has there been:
    • New – More hills and mountains.
    • Standard – A normal amount
    • Old – Less hills and mountains
    • Random – No determined amount.
  • Temperature – affects what types of tiles are present where
    • Hot – More Desert tiles, less Tundra
    • Standard – Average terrain similar to Earth’s terrain patterns
    • Cold – More Tundra and Snow, less Desert
    • Random – You can probably guess at this point
  • Rainfall – governs the amount of forest tiles
    • Arid – Less woods, rainforests and marshland.
    • Standard – An average amount.
    • Wet – More woods, rainforests and marshland.
    • Random – Yup.
  • Sea Level – how many water tiles there are on the map versus land.
    • Low – Less water.
    • Standard – “Normal” amounts, similar to Earth.
    • High – More water, close to flooded.
    • Random – And again.
  • Resources – how much Iron, Uranium and everything in between there is
    • Sparse – Less resources, more trading.
    • Standard – Normal amounts of resources, you won’t have everything you need.
    • Abundant – stuff, just, everywhere.
    • Random – Roll the dice.

Civilization 6 gameplay settings

Civilization 6 map types

These are options for games beyond which civ you’re playing. There’s a few.

  • Start Position – governs quality of the areas around your first settler
    • Balanced – All players have equally good starting spots.
    • Standard – Standard starting positions, might be alright, might not.
    • Legendary – Great starting positions for everyone, but not all equal.
  • Victory Conditions – how you can win, these can all be enabled or disabled
    • Culture
    • Domination
    • Religious
    • Science
    • Score
  • Limit Turns – this changes when the game will end to enable a Score victory
    • By Game Speed – The game ends at 2050 AD, meaning the numbers of turns is governed by how fast your game is set.
    • Custom – A specific number of turns to get ahead.
    • No Turn Limit – Removes all this.

That’s all the options you’ll have when you start your first game, what will you go for?