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Game Info[]

First nuclear weapon of the game. Delivered via bomber. Requires Manhattan Project and Uranium Uranium.

  • Common abilities:
    • Evasion (50)
  • Special traits:
    • Blast radius (2 tiles)
    • Nuclear Fallout
  • Actions:
    • Rebase Mode: Order the air unit to rebase to another city or Carrier


An Atomic Bomb is the first weapon of mass destruction in the game. It's represented by a bomber unit, so it works the same way as an airplane and can be based in a player-owned city or aboard a Carrier. It can move from base to base or attack a target within its range of 10 tiles.

When it detonates, an Atomic Bomb will damage cities and hurt units within its blast radius of 2 tiles, and will kill any unit on the tile it hits, including aircraft and civilian units. All improvements within the blast radius are destroyed (as if Pillaged), and the tiles become radioactive (affected by fallout). The bomb also reduces (kills) approximately half of the 20xPopulation5.png Population of a target city, down to a minimum of 1. This can be reduced by the construction of a Bomb Shelter in the target city. The bomb is automatically destroyed when it attacks.

Since the Atomic Bomb is delivered by a bomber, it is supposed to be possible for an opponent with sufficiently strong anti-air defenses (e.g. Anti-Aircraft Guns and Mobile SAMs) to shoot down the plane that carries it. However, due to a bug that has been present since the game's launch, the bombers that drop Atomic Bombs cannot be intercepted. Therefore, the best defense against nuclear strikes is a good offense: either nuke your opponents before they can nuke you, or cut off their Uranium supplies to prevent them from building and using weapons of mass destruction.

Civilopedia entry[]

The early atomic bombers were no different from other heavy bombers, except of course for their payload. The "Enola Gay," which carried the atomic bomb to Hiroshima on August 6, 1945, was an American B-29 bomber, as was the "Bockscar" which dropped the second on Nagasaki three days later. In the period since the war the nuclear powers developed special "strategic bombers" to carry the nuclear weapons deep into enemy territory. These craft can fly a very long range at very high altitudes and are equipped with sophisticated jamming and anti-missile technology. The latest strategic bombers include stealth technology, making them even harder to destroy before they can drop their deadly payloads.


The atomic bomb's carrier plane is based on the American Boeing B-29 Superfortress, the model of plane designated by the United States to carry the first two atomic bombs to their respective targets in Japan. The bomb itself is designed in the likeness of the "Fat Man" model, the second bomb dropped on Japan during the Second World War.

Civilization V Units [edit]
Civilian Archaeologist BNW-only.pngCaravan BNW-only.pngCargo Ship BNW-only.pngSettlerWork BoatWorker
Land military Anti-Aircraft GunAnti-Tank GunArcher (Atlatlist GodsKings5 clear.pngBowmanSlinger) • ArtilleryBazooka BNW-only.pngCannonCatapult (BallistaSiege Tower BNW-only.png) • Cavalry (Berber Cavalry BNW-only.pngComanche Riders BNW-only.pngCossackHussar GodsKings5 clear.png) • Chariot Archer (Hand-Axe BNW-only.pngHorse Archer GodsKings5 clear.pngWar ChariotWar Elephant) • Composite Bowman GodsKings5 clear.pngCrossbowman (Chu-Ko-NuLongbowman) • Gatling Gun GodsKings5 clear.pngGiant Death RobotGreat War Infantry GodsKings5 clear.png (Foreign Legion) • Helicopter GunshipHorseman (African Forest Elephant GodsKings5 clear.pngCataphract GodsKings5 clear.pngCompanion Cavalry) • Infantry (Pracinha) • Knight (Camel ArcherConquistadorKeshikMandekalu CavalryNaresuan's Elephant) • Lancer (Hakkapeliitta GodsKings5 clear.pngSipahiWinged Hussar BNW-only.png) • Landship GodsKings5 clear.pngLongswordsman (BerserkerSamurai) • Machine Gun GodsKings5 clear.pngMarine GodsKings5 clear.pngMechanized InfantryModern ArmorMobile SAMMusketman (JanissaryMinutemanMusketeerTercio) • ParatrooperPikeman (Impi BNW-only.pngLandsknecht) • Rifleman (Carolean GodsKings5 clear.pngMehal Sefari GodsKings5 clear.pngNorwegian Ski Infantry) • Rocket ArtilleryScout (Pathfinder BNW-only.png) • Spearman (Battering Ram GodsKings5 clear.pngHopliteImmortalPictish Warrior GodsKings5 clear.png) • Swordsman (Kris Swordsman BNW-only.pngLegionMohawk Warrior) • Tank (Panzer) • Trebuchet (Hwach'a) • Warrior (BruteJaguarMaori Warrior) • XCOM Squad BNW-only.png
Naval military BattleshipCaravel (Nau BNW-only.pngTurtle Ship) • CarrierDestroyerFrigate (Ship of the Line) • Galleass (Great Galleass BNW-only.png) • GalleyIroncladMissile CruiserNuclear SubmarinePrivateer GodsKings5 clear.png (Sea Beggar GodsKings5 clear.png) • SubmarineTrireme (Quinquereme GodsKings5 clear.pngDromon GodsKings5 clear.png)
Aircraft Atomic BombBomber (B17) • Fighter (Zero) • Great War Bomber GodsKings5 clear.pngGuided MissileJet FighterNuclear MissileStealth BomberTriplane GodsKings5 clear.png
Religious Inquisitor GodsKings5 clear.pngMissionary GodsKings5 clear.png
See also Great PeopleSpaceship Parts

GodsKings5 clear.png Valid only in the Gods & Kings expansion pack.
BNW-only.png Valid only in the Brave New World expansion pack.