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Civ 6: Gathering Storm’s first (official) new civ is Hungary

Under Matthias Corvinus, Hungary gets big benefits from levied armies and can expand rapidly around rivers

The first new civ that Civ 6’s coming expansion, Gathering Storm, will bring to the game has been officially revealed (the reason for the italics there will become clear in due time): it’s Hungary, led by the 15th-century king Matthias Corvinus.

Hungary’s unique ability is Pearl of the Danube, which will enable him to construct districts and buildings faster if they’re across a river from the city centre. Find a river with an acute meander and settle inside it, then enjoy powerful districts for the rest of the game, albeit with greater exposure to the new flooding disasters that Gathering Storm will also add – beelining to dams will probably be a sensible play.

Hungary has a unique building in the Thermal Bath, which replaces the zoo and provides amenities and production to every city centre in its range. If there is a geothermal fissure in the city’s borders – a new terrain feature that presumably confirms geothermal power plants – the Thermal Bath also adds tourism and more amenities.

To no-one’s surprise, Hungary’s unique unit is the Huszar, an Industrial era light cavalry unit that gets a combat bonus for each active alliance.

Finally, Matthias’s unique ability is The Raven King. This will award two envoys with a city state each time you levy one of its units into your service. It also grants levied units extra movement and combat strength, and eliminates all gold and resource costs to upgrade them (which implies that it now costs strategic resources to upgrade units). On top of this, The Raven King grants a second unique unit – the Black Army. This is another light cavalry unit that gets bonus combat strength from adjacent levied units.

Here’s the video reveal:

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It’s worth noting that Hungary under Matthias Corvinus was one of the civs leaked last week (hence the italics), which seems like a pretty big coincidence to actually be a coincidence. The Civ 6: Gathering Storm release date is February 14, and everything else we know so far is at that link.

As for the new arrival, depending on how big those river-based construction bonuses are, Hungary could be pretty strong if you can grab lots of river-based real estate. Anything that helps you get districts up faster is a potentially big boost. I don’t use city state levies much, but Matthias’s bonuses to the system could well be the inducement needed to do so.