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Can you win a game of Civ 6 with only one city? Watch us try

Civ 6 one city victory Let's Play

Here’s a challenge: how far can you get if you only allow yourself to settle a single city in Civ VI? Here’s another challenge: try saying that last sentence really quickly a few times. For this new series of Civ 6 vids, usual Let’s Play crew Phil and Joel assemble to try out a microempire, taking the reigns of Trajan’s Rome on a huge world map and Prince difficulty, and allowing themselves to build a single city. Rome by name, Rome and absolutely nothing else by nature.

Read more: try our review of Civilization VI.

Trajan actually has a few abilities that make him suited to early game expansion, so he might seem like an unusual pick. But he’s also good at defending against Barbarians in the early game, and his Bath unique district really helps maximise city growth.

Basically to make this work, we need a city that grows rapidly, produces enough gold that we can keep buying tiles at a steady pace, and has a high enough production rate that we can build multiple wonders and enjoy their bonuses. With that infrastructure set up, we might even have a stab at a non-violent victory type such as science or culture.

Things that could really hamper us: invasion from rival civs. Barbarian activity. Aggressive early expansion from rival civs. Poor diplomacy hampering our trade options. You know, all the things that happen in every single game of Civ.

We face all those foes, none more formidable than Philip II of Spain, who amasses a huge army of warriors on our borders then declares surpsise war on us while we have exactly one military unit. And he’s off escorting a trade caravan. But somehow – somehow – we manage to build an army big enough to fend him off. Not ten turns later, Phil’s coming to us with opulent cloth cap in hand, begging for a peace treaty.

So unlike the vast, vast majority of our Civ 6 Let’s Plays, this one actually goes quite well.

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