From StrategyWiki, the video game walkthrough and strategy guide wiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Social policies replace the civics or government systems found in previous installments. They cost culture to adopt, and each contribute to getting a Cultural Victory, as completing five social policy branches are required to build the Utopia Project, the condition to get a Cultural Victory. However, the cost of each social policy increases by 30% with every city you build or annex. Each social policy consists of an opener, five sub-policies and a finisher. The opener and the sub-policies must be obtained seperately, while the effects of the finisher is automatically granted once all of the sub-policies of a certain social policy are adopted.

Certain social policies cannot be active at the same time, for example Piety and Rasionalism. Changing between these policies will make you enter a turn of anarchy, where you gain no gold, science or production. You can switch back any time for no culture cost, but it will cost more turns of anarchy.


  • Available from: Ancient Era
  • Opener: +3 culture in capital city and increased border expansion.
  • Finisher: +15% food growth and +2 food in each city (+2 food is replaced with an Aqueduct in the first four cities in G&K).

Tradition is the adherence to the rules and decisions laid by earlier generations. Tradition is a great policy for civilizations of any size, but it is especially good for small empires aiming for a few, well-built cities. The opener cuts the culture cost of acquiring tiles significantly, helping you exapnd and obtain more land.

The growth bonus from the finisher stacks with other growth bonuses, including Landed Elite, helping your population grow and letting your citizens focus on other aspects like production as well as letting you support more specialists. The free Aqueducts will boost your growth further, as well as saving some production or gold to be used for other buildings.


  • +15% production when building wonders and +1 happiness for every 10 citizens in your city.

Aristocracy is a government system where the elite members of the society rule the country. The wonder production boost is dependant on whether you will be building a bunch of wonders, but it is quite significant and stacks with other production-boosting buildings. The happiness boost helps you maintain a high population city and reduce the unhappiness that usually results from it.


  • Provides a free culture building in your first 4 cities.

Legalism refers to a strict adherence to the law among the rulers and the citizens. The free culture buildings it provides you helps save some turns for producing them normally. You don't have to worry if you do not have any culture buildings available to build in your cities or if you have less than 4 cities, since the free buildings will be provided after you research a certain technology that enables new culture buildings or when you found a new city. While you will usually get it to get 4 free Monuments, delaying the adoption of Legalism can sometimes let you get better buildings, such as Siam's Wats that replaces the university.


  • No maintainance cost for garrisoned units, cities with a garrison gain +100% (+50% in G&K) ranged combat strength.

Oligarchy is a government operated by certain members of a society, such as a tribe or a family. It enhances the city's damage during bombardment, but doesn't actually increase the defensive boost from the combined combat strength when garrisoned. Without having to maintain garrisoned units, you can afford to field a larger army.

Landed Elite[edit]

  • Prerequsites: Legalism
  • +10% growth and +2 food in the capital city.

Landed Elite is a policy where the area of land owned determies how powerful a person is. It gives a fair boost of food in your capital and stacks with other growth enhancers like the Tradition finisher. With it, you can shift your citizens to focus on other tiles or assign more as specialists.


  • Prerequisites: Legalism
  • +1 gold and -1 unhappiness for every 2 citizens in the capital.

Monarchy is a system where all power is held by one person, who usually inherits the throne from a previous ruler. The bonuses this policy provides helps you build up a large capital and get rewarded for doing so. The reduced unhappiness also stacks with other unhappiness modifiers multiplicatively. The gold bonus is considered as part of the city's output and is modified by buildings accordingly.


  • Available from: Ancient Era
  • Opener: +1 culture in each city.
  • Finisher: Free Great Person of your choice appears near city.

Liberty is a belief that the citizens in a country deserve to be free from physical restraint or control. It is most suitable for civilizations that want to expand rapidly, since its bonuses help in setting up and managing lots of cities. The opener provides a small increase in culture to slightly offset the exponentially increasing cost of social policies when founding new cities, while also letting new cities start producing culture and expand before any culture buildings are built.

The finisher can be used in a variety of ways. You can choose to get a Great Engineer to finish a useful wonder, choose a Great Scientist to advance your technology or choose a Great Prophet to found or enhance a religion if you have trouble accumulating faith. The type of Great Person you want depends on your current situation, but any Great Persons is a valuable asset to your empire.

Collective Rule[edit]

  • Prerequisites: Republic (G&K)
  • Settlers produced 50% faster, free settler appears near capital.

Collective Rule is a governing system where every member (at least, most members) of society get to participate in the governing process. The free settler is very useful, as founding an early second city will be incredibly beneficial throughout the game. The increased production of settlers also let you create more settlers in a shorter amount of time and found more cities.


  • Construction of improvements increased by 25%, worker appears near capital.

Citizenship acknowledges a certain group of people as citizens of a country, giving them privileges foreigners and non-citizens lack. A free early worker can bring dramatic benefits, letting you boost certain tile yields. The improvement boost lets you create them slightly faster, which can stack with the bonus granted by the Pyramids.


  • Prerequisites: Collective Rule
  • +1 production in each city and +5% production in cities when constructing buildings.

Republic is a government ruled by representatives of the people. It gives you an early production boost for building up new cities. The +5% production boost scales with your total production in a city, making it a useful boost throughout the game.


  • Prerequisites: Citizenship
  • The increase in culture cost of social policies from newly founded cities reduced by 33%, starts a Golden Age when adopted.

Representation is a goverments system where citizens elect representatives to run the nation. It's culture cost reduction helps offset the increasing costs of social policies that comes with having a wide empire. The reduction from cities also applies to cities you've already founded before adopting Representation. The instant Golden Age also helps to give a short but vital boost to production and gold income.


  • Prerequisites: Citizenship
  • +1 happiness for each city connected to the capital through trade routes, -5% unhappiness from citizens in non-occupied cities.

Meritocracy is a government system where officials are selected based on merit, and not heredity. It is usually the last policy in the Liberty branch to be adopted, as trade routes are enabled a bit later in the game and the unhappiness reduction is minute. However, the happiness boost might just be enough to keep your citizens content.


  • Available from: Ancient Era
  • Opener: +25% (+33% in G&K) combat strength against barbarians, get notified about new barbarian encampments discovered within revealed territory. Defeating barbarians grant culture to the empire.
  • Finisher: Grants gold for each enemy unit killed.

In an honor-bound society, citizens are judged by their honorable qualities, and failure to uphold one's honor can be worse than death. Honor improves your military and is decent in most situations, but especially if you fear barbarians or want to start early wars. The opener can be quite helpful no matter what strategy you choose to employ, as you are going to encounter barbarians early on, and clearing encampments can give you an economic boost, in addition to the Culture boost you get from adopting Honor. The Culture gained from a defeated barbarian depends on the barbarian unit's combat strength, and stacks with the Aztecs' unique ability.

The Finisher encourages you to kill enemies so you can get Gold equal to its base combat strength. While the bounty will rarely be enough to let you buy or upgrade units, it does help keep your economy alive if you go to war a lot, which usually means losing some trade partners.

Warrior Code[edit]

  • +15% Production when training melee units, Great General appears near capital.

A Warrior Code represents military organizations where its members feel a strong allegiance to it. The unit production boost stacks with the Forge, helping you produce units faster. However, this aspect of the policy is lost with the advent of Musketmen, as they and future non-ranged, non-siege and non-mounted units are considered gunpowder units. The free Great General is quite powerful for starting early wars, and can help you overcome an enemy advantage.


  • +10% (15% in G&K) combat strength for military units when another friendly military unit in an adjacent tile.

Discipline refers to a willingness of a soldier to carry out orders from a superior. It supports having units close together, simple as that.

Military Tradition[edit]

  • Prerequisites: Warrior Code
  • Military units gain 50% more experience.

Military Tradition refers to honoring a romanticizing service in the nation's military. The increased experience will help your units gain promotions faster, letting them take the stronger ones like March and Logistics sooner. Unfortunately, the increased experience does not increase the progress of obtaining a Great General or a Great Admiral, though it is still powerful nonetheless.

Military Caste[edit]

  • Prerequisites: Discipline
  • Each city with a garrison increases empire happiness by 1 and culture by 2.

Military Caste refers to a military in which all members are from a certain class of society. The policy is better for sprawling empires as you will have more cities to garrison, provided that you have enough spare units to do so. It is basically providing an extra Monument to your cities, but with the extra benefit of maintaining happiness.

Professional Army[edit]

  • Prerequisites: Military Caste
  • Gold cost for unit upgrades reduced by 33%, +1 happiness from every defensive building (Walls, Castle, Arsenal, Military Base).

A Professional Army is an army composed of people specifically trained for military services, instead of recruiting any particularly strong person during wartime. The reduced upgrade cost helps you maintain a modern army easier, while leaving you with more gold in your treasury to be spent on other matters. The happiness boost from defensive buildings are decent, though the buildings by themselves won't be of too much use if you're playing aggressively.


  • Available from: Classical Era
  • Opener: Reduces time to build culture-granting buildings (In G&K, reduces time to build Shrines and Temples).
  • Finisher: Reduces cost of future social policies by 10% (In G&K, reduces faith cost of religious units and buildings by 20% while Holy Sites provide 3 gold and 3 culture).
  • Conflicts with: Rationalism

Piety refers to a devotion to a particular religion. The Piety branch gives you bonuses for Culture and, with the introduction of religion in Gods and Kings, Faith. It cannot be active at the same time as Rationalism, and switching to Rationalism with Piety active will result in one turn of anarchy. Generally, Rationalism is more preferable than Piety, but Piety is almost mandatory when going for a Cultural Victory.

The opener is very useful for setting up cities, as Monuments are likely among the first things you build upon founding one, and remains effective until the Modern Era if you want to generate a lot of culture through buildings. In Gods and Kings, the opener helps you found a religion faster, as Shrines will also be an early priority for new cities. However, as Temples are the last faith-generating building that requires Production, it loses its luster later on.

The finisher is a simple cost decrease helpful for getting closer to a Cultural Victory, letting you finish Social Policy branches quickly. In Gods and Kings, it's effects are more focused on religion, making useful religious units like Missionaries cheaper to purchase. You also have more incentive to generate or buy Great Prophets, since setting up Holy Sites will provide great yields when worked.

Organized Religion[edit]

  • +1 happiness for every Monument, Temple and Monastery (In G&K, +1 faith from Shrines and Temples).

An Organized Religion is a religion with set practices and beliefs. It provides some extra Happiness for the early Culture buildings you will likely construct, though its effects suit a wide empire with many cities better, which is a bit contrary to the playstyle when going for a Cultural Victory. In Gods and Kings, it improves you Faith-generating buildings. As Shrines are among the first thing you build in a new city and are made cheaper by the opener, you can generate a significant amount of Faith in a rather short time.

Mandate of Heaven[edit]

  • 50% of excess happiness from each turn added into culture total for getting Social Policies.

Mandate of Heaven is a belief that a ruler was elected as such by a divine force. It synergize very well with a strategy focused on triggering Golden Ages, which usually involves getting lots of excess happiness to trigger them. While it doesn't increase border growth, the additional Culture can be very high if you're generating a lot of Happiness.


  • Prerequisites: Organized Religion
  • Temples increase a city's gold output by 10%

Theocracy is a country ruled by religious leaders. Since adopting Piety means you're aiming for a Cultural Victory or trying to improve your religion, you will likely be building a lot of Temples. The bonus is percentage-based, meaning that large cities with a lot of focus on Gold can get a great income boost.


  • Prerequisites: Organized Religion
  • 33% increase in culture for cities with a World Wonder, also starts a Golden Age.

Reformation is a big movement that seeks to reform a religion that seems to have strayed from its principles. The bonus stacks with other similar percentage-based increasing buildings and wonders like the Broadcast Tower and the Sistine Chapel, potentially letting you double your Culture output. The Golden Age also provides a temporary Culture output boost in addition to its other effects.

Religious Tolerance[edit]

  • Prerequisites: Reformation, Mandate of Heaven
  • +1 culture for every Monument, Temple and Monastery, also grants one free Social Policy (In G&K, Reduces cost of future policies by 10%).

Religious Tolerance is a policy where citizens are not forced to adopt a certain religion, letting them choose one themselves. As building Monuments and Temples are a given for Cultural Victories, you'll simply boost the Culture output of all of your cities. The free Social Policy is also nothing to laugh at, effectively letting you get two policies at once without increasing the cost of the next policy. In Gods and Kings, Piety's former finisher effect is moved to Religious Tolerance, giving you a more mundane but still effective cost decrease for Social Policies.


  • Available from: Medieval Era
  • Opener: City-State Influence degrades 25% slower.
  • Finisher: Causes City-State influences of other civilizations to degrade 33% faster.

Patronage is where the wealthy and powerful support talented artisans in society. All of its policies are related to relationships with City-States, making it almost mandatory for a Diplomatic Victory and a useful supplement to any strategy that involves long-term alliances with City-States. The opener is a very straightforward buff that lets you maintain a friendship or alliance with a City State longer. The finisher helps you compete for the influences of City-States with other countries, being enough to cancel out Patronage's own opener bonus.


  • Gold gifts to City-States provide 25% more Influence.

Philanthropy is a policy where the rich decide to give their wealth back to the public in some form. It is another simple bonus that lets you gain more Influence with the same amount of gold. This policy combined with the opener means that you need to invest less Gold overall to maintain your relationship with a City-State.


  • Minimum Influence for to all City-States increased to 20.

Aesthetics is the policy which is concerned with the creation and appreciation of beauty. The free Influence means that completing any quest will likely turn you into their ally. Again, it reduces the amount of Gold you need to maintain a long-term relationship with a City-State.


  • Prerequisites: Philanthropy
  • Allied City-States provide a science bonus equal to 25% of what they generate for themselves.

Scholasticism is a teaching method that emphasizes critical thinking and debate. While the first two social policies in the Patronage branch helped you achieve and maintain a lasting relationship with a city-state, its remaining policies increases the benefits you get from them. City-states also produces Science like a normal civilization, though how much depends on the Science-based buildings they have built and how many citizens they have.

Cultural Diplomacy[edit]

  • Prerequisites: Scholasticism
  • Quantity of resources gifted from City-States increased by 100%. Happiness from gifted luxury resources increased by 50%.

Cultural Diplomacy is the act of lending or gifting a nation's most beautiful and prized items to promote peace. The policy's usefulness depends on each game. Sometimes, a city-state may just happen to possess vital late-game strategic resources when you desperately need it, so doubling the amount you receive can be very helpful. The Happiness bonus from luxury resources will still apply even if the City-State gives you a resource you already have. In Gods and Kings, you can take better advantage of this policy by offering to improve a resource for a City-State.

Educated Elite[edit]

  • Prerequisites: Scholasticism, Aesthetics
  • Allied City-States will occasionally gift you Great Persons.

Educated Elite is the policy where the high-ranking members of society must receive a good education. Free Great Persons are always valuable, and they will become more frequent the more allied City-States you have. Do note that these Great Persons will still increase the GPP required to generate your own Great Person in your cities.


  • Available from: Medieval Era
  • Opener: Boosts gold output in capital by 25% (In G&K, can also purchase Great Merchants with Faith)
  • Finisher: +1 gold from every specialist (In G&K, +1 gold from every Trading Post and doubled gold from Great Merchant trading missions.)

Commerce deals with the exchange of goods and services. As its name might suggest, its policies improve your gold output, helping you maintain a fine economy. It also synergizes well with largely aquatic empires, providing bonuses for your navy and coastal cities. The opener becomes better the more Gold your capital generates, and stacks additively with buildings like the Market. With the right combination of buildings, you can actually double your Gold output. The ability to purchase Great Merchants with Faith in G&K is also helpful, letting you get a huge lump of Gold or construct the Customs House in your capital, which will benefit from the 25% output bonus.

The finisher is a bit bland, but it can increase your income significantly if you've employed a lot of specialists, especially Merchants. In Gods and Kings, the finisher makes constructing Trading Posts quite profitable, letting you get a 3 Gold yield from the tile it is built on when combined with Economics. The second part of the policy encourages you to spawn or purchase a Great Merchant, since the GM's improvement is boosted by the opener, while his special ability is improved by the finisher.

Naval Tradition[edit]

  • +1 movement for all naval units and +1 sight for naval combat units (In G&K, also grants +2 movement for Great Admirals and creates a Great Admiral near the capital).

A nation with a Naval Tradition is one that values their navy above other military branches. It improves the speed and sight of your naval units, making it a valuable policy on maps with large oceans like Archipelago, or if you're focused on producing a fearsome navy. The increased movement not only affects your ships, it also improves your embarked units as well, letting you perform cross-continental amphibious assaults. In Gods and King, the Great Admiral also helps you to assert naval dominance, but it has an unexpected use. Since Great Admirals can enter deep ocean hexes and you can potentially obtain this policy before researching Astronomy, you can actually use it to explore the ocean earlier than other civilizations.

Trade Unions[edit]

  • Road and railroad maintainance cost reduced by 33%, Harbors and Seaports grant +1 gold.

Trade Unions are organizations of workers concerned with their own welfare. The reduction in maintenance might seem small at first, but its effects are quite noticeable if you have a large road or railway network. The second half of the policy encourages a strategy focused on coastal cities, since you can establish cheaper trade routes and increase your income by constructing Harbors.

Merchant Navy[edit]

  • Prerequisites: Naval Tradition
  • +3 production in coastal cities

A Merchant Navy is a group of merchant ships that help deliver goods for the military and is protected by the navy during wars. The policy provides more raw Production than any other social policy, but it is only limited to coastal cities. Since coastal cities will usually have less land to generate Production, the policy can be of great help.


  • Prerequisites: Trade Unions
  • Cost for purchasing items in cities reduced by 33%. (In G&K, also grants 1 science for every Mint, Market, Bank and Stock Exchange).

Mercantilism is a form of economic nationalism that encourages a nation to increase exports and limit imports so that its citizens may grow richer. The cost reduction stacks additively with the Big Ben wonder and other policies, encouraging you to buy units and buildings instead of taking time to produce them. The Science boost in Gods and Kings encourage you to build more Gold-focused buildings, letting you stay updated to current technological progress while still maintaining a strong economy.


  • Prerequisites: Mercantilism
  • +1 happiness from each luxury resource. (+2 in Gods and Kings)

Protectionism is the policy of limiting trading through quotas and taxes, usually to protect a nation's industries. The happiness boost is less than what other social policies provide, but it is much easier to activate it, by simply having tiles with luxury resources improved. It can be helpful if you're building a wide empire, as you will have happiness problems due to the number of cities, but more luxury resources to obtain.


  • Available from: Renaissance Era
  • Opener: +50% science granted by Research Agreements. (In G&K, +15% science output when empire has positive happiness, may purchase Great Scientists with Faith).
  • Finisher: +1 gold from science buildings. (In G&K, grants 2 free technologies)
  • Conflicts with: Piety

Rationalism is the policy of explaining how the world works through observation and reason rather than mythology and faith. The social policies in the Rationalism branch is focused on the generation of Science. Since Rationalism's core ideology conflicts with Piety, these two branches cannot be active at the same time. Generally, Rationalism is more useful than Piety, unless when going for a Cultural Victory. An advanced military is a must for Domination, researching Globalization quickly lets one construct the United Nations for a Diplomatic Victory and getting the technologies for space ship parts is vital for getting a Scientific Victory.

The opener grants a strong bonus to Research Agreements, letting you rack up tons of extra Science if you sign agreements very often. In Gods and Kings, it gives you a helpful percentage-based bonus that increases the total Science output of all your cities. Since you should generally try to keep your empire happy, the bonus isn't very hard to maintain.

The finisher gives a minor bonus that will likely make an impact, as you would usually be producing Science buildings in most of your cities. In Gods and Kings, its effect is much more powerful, letting you grab key technologies with a carefully timed adoption of the last policy in the branch.


  • +2 Science from every specialist.

Secularism is the belief that the government should be separate from religion. The effect it grants will be stronger if you have large cities capable of supporting more specialists. With it, scientist specialists will now give you 5 Science, or you may assign a specialist to other fields while still maintaining a fair Science bonus.


  • +1 Happiness from every University, Observatory and Public School.

Humanism is the philosophy that humans are the highest, most intelligent beings in the world, without any supernatural powers or deities that we owe allegiance to. It gives you some free Happiness for a developed city, but unlike other policies in the branch it doesn't improve your Science output in any way.

Free Thought[edit]

  • Prerequisites: Secularism
  • +1 Science from Trading Posts, +17% science from Universities.

Free Thought is the belief that knowledge should be gained from reason instead of dogma. It gives you a great boost in Science, especially in cities with lots of Jungle tiles. As Trading Posts can be built on Jungle tiles without cutting the jungle down, it can make these tiles provide excellent, well-balanced yields.


  • Prerequisites: Humanism
  • +15% science when empire has positive happiness. (In G&K, +1 gold from science buildings).

Sovereignty is the belief that the state belongs to the people. The Science bonus is pretty easy to maintain, as long as you keep your Happiness over 0, even just barely. In Gods and Kings, it gives you a bland but decent bonus that encourages you to produce Science buildings.

Scientific Revolution[edit]

  • Prerequisites: Free Thought
  • 2 free technologies. (In G&K, +50% science granted by Research Agreements).

A Scientific Revolution is a time when rapid, radical scientific discoveries overturn the current world view. It is probably the best policy in the branch, as timing when you adopt it can let you obtain important technologies instantly. In Gods and Kings, its effect is less amazing, but still helpful if you often sign Research Agreements.


  • Available from: Industrial Era
  • Opener: Great People spawn rate increased by 25%. (In G&K, may purchase Great Artists with Faith.)
  • Finisher: Increases the yield from Great Tile Improvements by 100% and increases the length of Golden Ages by 50%.
  • Conflicts with: Autocracy and Order

Freedom is the policy that states that generally all people are equal and subjected to the same laws. The Freedom policy branch puts a higher focus on supporting specialists, indirectly increasing growth and Great Person generation. This makes Freedom the policy of choice for players aiming for a Cultural Victory, as it supports small, high-population empires and the generation of Great Artists.

Freedom's opener gives a boost to the generation of Great Persons which is useful for any strategy, but especially for civs going for a Scientific Victory or rushing a lot of wonders. It also stacks additively with other Great Person generation boosts. In Gods and Kings, the ability to purchase Great Artists with Faith aids in getting a Cultural Victory.

The finisher encourages expending Great People to create Tile Improvements. The improved yield from Landmarks and Manufactories are extremely helpful for a Cultural Victory while improved Academies benefit players going for a Scientific Victory. The Golden Age length increase stacks additively with similar bonuses, letting you enjoy Golden Ages for much longer.


  • +2 culture from each World Wonder.

A constitution is a set of rules that outlines how the government will operate. This policy is very helpful when going for a Cultural Victory, as you will likely have the Production and need to rush World Wonders. However, its use is quite limited for any other type of victory.

Universal Suffrage[edit]

  • Combat strength of cities increased by 33%.

Universal suffrage states that every citizen in a nation can vote, regardless of race, gender or class. While it does increase the defenses of your cities, it is often better to have military units to defend them instead of relying on the policy itself. This means that this policy is rarely adopted, other than for triggering the finisher.

Civil Society[edit]

  • Specialists consume half the normal amount of food.

In a civil society, people freely and voluntarily work to improve their surroundings. With the policy active, Specialists consume 1 Food per turn instead of 2. This means that every Specialist you have increase the excess Food, increasing the Growth rate of your city and allowing you to appoint more Specialists without your city starving.

Free Speech[edit]

  • Prerequisites: Constitution
  • 8 units are maintainance free.

Free speech is the policy in which the people can freely voice their opinions without fear of government reprisal. While the effect may seem small, the bonus income you get without needing to maintain your units increases as your units get more expensive to maintain, which happens gradually as more turns pass.


  • Prerequisites: Civil Society
  • Specialists produce half the normal amount of unhappiness.

A democracy is a nation where the government is elected and controlled by the people of the nation. It reduces the Unhappiness generated by Specialists, effectively letting you increase your empire's Happiness by assigning more Specialists. Since you are able to control how many Specialists you have in each city, you can essentially control your city's Happiness. Democracy can potentially give you more Happiness than any other policy, limited only by how many citizens your cities can support.


  • Available from: Industrial Era
  • Opener: Reduces gold maintainance for military units by 33%. (In G&K, also receive 10 culture for every point of culture a city produces when capturing that city).
  • Finisher: Grants a 20% attack bonus to all military units for 30 turns (25% attack bonus for 50 turns in G&K).
  • Conflicts with: Freedom and Order

Autocracy is a government where one person has complete power. The social policy branch is for players aiming to conquer the world, giving powerful effects to improve your military, making it the best choice when going for a Domination Victory.

Autocracy's opener decreases unit maintenance, which gets higher the more turns have passed, letting you field a larger army with the same amount of Gold or generate extra income for other uses. In Gods and Kings, it has an additional effect that gives you 10 times the Culture a captured city produces each turn when you capture it, which can be a huge amount if you manage to capture a city with lots of World Wonders and culture-generating buildings. This extra Culture helps you unlock more policies within the branch using military force, which is helpful since most domination-focused civilizations won't be focusing on Culture.

Autocracy's finisher gives a straightforward attack bonus that lasts for a limited number of turns. As this policy is usually adopted very late in the game, it gives you a very useful power boost to make a final push into your opponent's Capitals, letting you seize victory.


  • Wounded military units do 25% more damage.

Populism is a tactic in which politicians attempt to gain power by playing on the resentment that the common people have for a nation's elite or ruling class. It lets your military units last on the battlefield longer, as units usually lose a lot of their power when low on health. Note that Populism will never let units do more damage than what they can do at maximum health.


  • Gold cost of purchasing units reduced by 33%.

Militarism is the policy that the state needs a strong military, and needs of said military is paramount. It encourages you to rush-buy expensive late-game units instead of spending time producing them. It synergizes well with the Autocracy opener, since you will have some extra income from the reduced unit maintenance.


  • Prerequisites: Populism and Militarism
  • Quantity of strategic resources in empire increased by 100%. (In G&K, also grants +2 movement for all Great Generals).

Fascism is a movement that believes the state must be all-powerful. It doubles your supply of Strategic Resources, which is extremely useful since resources like Oil, Aluminum and Uranium are required by a lot of powerful late-game units. In Gods and Kings, the additional movement points for Great General helps them maneuver around enemy formations to avoid getting attacked.

Police State[edit]

  • Prerequisites: Militarism
  • +3 happiness from every Courthouse, build Courthouses in half the normal time. (In G&K, effectiveness of enemy spies reduced by 25% and 25% increased chance of catching enemy spies for your counter-spies).

A police state is a state in which the government controls the population by force or fear. It negates one of the biggest disadvantage of annexing many cities, which is the 3 Unhappiness from every annexed city. While building a Courthouse negates the Unhappiness, Police State also adds another 3 Happiness to the city. In Gods and Kings, it greatly improves the counter-espionage within your cities. Combined with a Constabulary, a Police Station and one of your own spies, you will make it almost impossible for enemies to steal any technology.

Total War[edit]

  • Prerequisites: Facism and Police State
  • +15% production (25% in G&K) when building military units, new military units start with 15 experience.

Total war is a military tactic that uses every resources in the country for the war. It reduces the Production cost of new units, which combined with Militarism means you get a discount on both purchasing and producing units. The bonus experience for military units stacks with buildings like the Barracks as well as the Brandenburg Gate, giving you a head start with promotions.


  • Available from: Industrial Era
  • Opener: +1 happiness for each city
  • Finisher: +1 food, production, science, gold and culture for each city (+2 in G&K).
  • Conflicts with: Freedom and Autocracy

United Front[edit]

  • Militaristic City-States grant units twice as often when at war with a common foe.

Planned Economy[edit]

  • Factories increase science output by 25%. (In G&K, also halves the building time for Factories).


  • 25% bonus (+15% in G&K) when fighting in friendly territory.


  • Prerequisites: Planned Economy
  • Maintainance cost of buildings reduced by 15%


  • Prerequisites: Socialism
  • +2 production per city and +10% production when constructing buildings. (In G&K, the +10% production bonus is replaced with +1 Production for every Mine and Quarry).