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The Barbary Corsair is a unique naval raider unit of the Ottoman civilization in Civilization VI: Gathering Storm. It replaces the Privateer and is unlocked with Medieval Faires.

  • Common abilities:
    • Invisible except when within Sight Sight range of Destroyers, other naval raiders, or when there is a unit in an adjacent tile.
    • Reveals stealth units within Sight Sight range.
    • Can perform Coastal Raids.
    • Has a ranged attack with Range Range 2.
    • Ignores enemy zone of control.
  • Special abilities:
    • Uses no Movement Movement to perform coastal raids.
  • Special traits:
    • Lower Production Production cost (240 vs. 280).
    • Lower Gold Gold maintenance cost (3 vs. 4).


Following the changes to pillaging in Gathering Storm, constant coastal harassment is now a viable strategy that does not require a lot of Production Production investment to have a large standing army, and the Ottomans have just the perfect vessel for that. The Barbary Corsair thrives on being an incessant annoyance more than a direct combat unit, as it has everything you can ask for to fulfill its role (very much like the Ottoman Sipahi in Civilization V): cheaper with standard invisibility for naval raider units, pillaging without costing Movement Movement, and most importantly, available before other civilizations unlock the standard Privateer to counter it. It is a rare unit that can actually benefit from the much undervalued Great Lighthouse Wonder and Great Admirals, since what it needs to do its job is not Strength Combat Strength, but only Movement Movement. This unit alone makes the Ottomans the bane of every civilization that has coastal tile improvements or enjoys bonuses from coastal districts and settlements, such as the English, Australians, or Dutch. Technically, Indonesia, thanks to the Kampungs and their civilization ability which incentivizes coastal constructions, is also a good target; however, they are equipped with Jong, which are available at around the same time, and their ability to instantly invoke a huge armada of Jong (thanks to Gitarja's ability) can be quite a problem if you decide to pick on them.

The best aspect of this unit lies in its brilliant timing. Similar to the Indonesian Jong, the Barbary Corsair is available in the Medieval Era, before the standard Privateer is unlocked for other civilizations. The only other two naval units in play at this time are the Galley and the Quadrireme, both are underwhelming military units with obsolete stats. Also, by being a Privateer replacement, the Barbary Corsair ignores zone of control, so catching this unit with just Galleys is nigh impossible. This allows them to have a very high degree of freedom to raid coastal cities for quite a while. Try to make the most of the Medieval Era before other civilizations gain access to Privateers - combined with policy cards like Raid and Total War, you will be rewarded with a constant income of Faith Faith, Gold Gold and healing to sustain through any damage thrown back your way. You can combine this with the Grand Master's Chapel for even more Faith Faith from raiding, and then use this Faith Faith to purchase military units like the Janissaries or Bombards next era, which happens to be the peak of Ottoman power.

Overall, the Barbary Corsair is in a relatively weird place in the Ottoman arsenal, considering that the Ottomans is a land domination civilization, similar to what Dromons are to Byzantium. However, the main difference between the Barbary Corsair and the Dromon is that the Dromon is a naval domination vessel with its extra Range Range and Strength Combat Strength while the Barbary Corsair is a support unit whose main role is to bring back as much Gold Gold and Faith Faith as it can to enable other more significant Ottoman strengths. This means while both Byzantium and Ottomans are land domination civilizations, the Barbary Corsair is much more likely to be able to contribute meaningfully on a land map than the Dromon.

Civilopedia entry[]

The Barbary Corsairs were some of the most feared and famous pirates of the Mediterranean during the Renaissance and Early Modern era. These pirates were financed and sanctioned by the Ottoman Empire, in much the way Western European states used privateers as commercial raiders. As the Ottoman Empire expanded and came into conflict with Western Europe, raids by the corsairs became more common. At the height of their power, the sight of a sleek corsair galley (or more terrifying, a fleet of them) bearing down was enough to fill the sight of all but the bravest of captains with a deep dread.

Piracy was a long-standing practice in the Mediterranean Sea, almost from the start of recorded history. The Barbary Corsairs were among the last of these groups, raiding all along the European coast. Operating from fortified ports along the Berber coast, like Algiers and Tunis, the Barbary Corsairs were famous for capturing ships and holding their crews for ransom—and often enslaving those too poor to be ransomed. Literature from the period is full of tales from escaped galley slaves, and a whole charitable industry arose out of liberating prisoners from the corsairs. But some Europeans found the prospect for riches and power attractive, and voluntarily joined the corsairs' ranks, and even served as officers.


Civilization VI Units [edit]
Civilian SettlerBuilderTraderArchaeologistSpyNaturalistRock Band GS-Only
Land military AT CrewArcher (Hul'che1Pítati Archer1) • ArtilleryBarbarian Horse ArcherBarbarian HorsemanBombardCatapultCavalry (CossackHuszár GS-OnlyLlanero1) • Courser GS-Only (Black Army GS-OnlyOromo Cavalry1) • Crossbowman (Voi Chiến1) • Crouching TigerCuirassier GS-Only (Rough RiderWinged Hussar1) • Field Cannon (Hwacha R&F-Only) • Giant Death Robot GS-OnlyHeavy ChariotHelicopterHorseman (Hetairoi1) • Infantry (Digger1) • Keshig R&F-OnlyKnight (Mandekalu Cavalry GS-OnlyMamlukTagma1) • Line Infantry (Garde ImpérialeRedcoat) • Machine GunMalón Raider R&F-OnlyMan-At-Arms (Khevsur R&F-OnlyBerserkerSamurai) • Maryannu Chariot ArcherMechanized InfantryModern ATModern ArmorMountie GS-OnlyMusketman (ConquistadorJanissary GS-Only) • Nihang1Pike and Shot (Carolean GS-Only) • Pikeman (Impi R&F-Only) • Questing Knight4Ranger (Highlander R&F-Only) • Rocket ArtillerySabum Kibittum1Saka Horse ArcherScout (Okihtcitaw R&F-Only) • Skirmisher GS-Only (Warak'aq GS-Only) • SlingerSpearman (Hoplite) • Spec Ops R&F-OnlySwordsman (Hypaspist1Immortal1LegionNgao MbebaToa GS-Only) • TankTrebuchet (Domrey1) • Vampire3VaruWar-CartWarrior MonkWarrior (Eagle WarriorGaesatae1) • Zombie5
Naval military Aircraft CarrierBattleship (Minas Geraes) • Caravel (Nau1) • DestroyerFrigate (De Zeven Provinciën R&F-OnlyJong1) • Galley (Bireme GS-OnlyViking Longship) • IroncladMissile CruiserNuclear SubmarinePrivateer (Barbary Corsair GS-OnlySea Dog) • Quadrireme (Dromon1) • Submarine (U-Boat)
Aircraft BiplaneBomberFighter (P-51 Mustang) • Jet BomberJet Fighter
Support Anti-Air GunBattering RamCultist3Drone R&F-OnlyMedicMilitary EngineerMobile SAMObservation BalloonSiege TowerSoothsayer2Supply Convoy R&F-Only
Religious ApostleGuruInquisitorMissionary
See also Great PeopleHeroes
1 Requires DLC2 Apocalypse mode only • 3 Secret Societies mode only • 4 Heroes & Legends mode only • 5 Zombie Defense mode only

R&F-Only Added in the Rise and Fall expansion pack.
GS-Only Added in the Gathering Storm expansion pack.