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Otto von Bismarck (1 April 1815 – 30 July 1898) was a Prussian statesman and the first Chancellor of Germany. He leads the Germans in Civilization V.


Bismarck in game

Bismarck speaks Modern German. On his diplomacy screen, he is standing in his office.

Capital: Berlin

Unique Unit(s): Landsknecht (vanilla and GodsKings5 clear.png), Panzer

Unique Building: Hanse (BNW-only.png)

Unique Ability: Furor Teutonicus

Voice Actor: Heinz Becker

AI Traits[]

Trait Amount
Competitiveness 7 (9-5)
Wonder Competitiveness 6 (8-4)
City-State Influence Competitiveness 7 (9-5)
Boldness 4 (6-2)
Diplobalance 8 (10-6)
Hate Warmongers 6 (8-4)
Willingness to Denounce 8 (10-6)
Willingness to Declare Friendship 6 (8-4)
Loyalty 6 (8-4)
Neediness 7 (9-5)
Forgiveness 6 (8-4)
Chattiness 5 (7-3)
Meanness 4 (6-2)
Offensive Unit Production 5 (7-3)
Defensive Unit Production 6 (8-4)
Defensive Building Production 6 (8-4)
Military Training Buildings Production 8 (10-6)
Recon Unit Production 8 (10-6)
Ranged Unit Production 5 (7-3)
Mobile Unit Production 7 (9-5)
Naval Unit Production 3 (5-1)
Naval Recon Unit Production 3 (5-1)
Air Unit Production 6 (8-4)
Naval Growth 4 (6-2)
Naval Tile Improvements 4 (6-2)
Water Connections 4 (6-2)
Expansion 7 (9-5)
Growth 5 (7-3)
Tile Improvements 6 (8-4)
Infrastructure (Roads) 5 (7-3)
Production Emphasis 8 (10-6)
Gold Emphasis 5 (7-3)
Science Emphasis 7 (9-5)
Culture Emphasis 5 (7-3)
Happiness Emphasis 5 (7-3)
Great People Emphasis 5 (7-3)
Wonder Emphasis 4 (6-2)
Religion Emphasis 3 (5-1)
Diplomacy Victory 5 (7-3)
Spaceship Victory 8 (10-6)
Nuke Production 7 (9-5)
Use of Nukes 5 (7-3)
Use of Espionage 5 (7-3)
Anti-Air Production 5 (7-3)
Air Carrier Production 5 (7-3)
Land Trade Route Emphasis 5 (7-3)
Sea Trade Route Emphasis 5 (7-3)
Archaeology Emphasis 5 (7-3)
Trade Origin Emphasis 5 (7-3)
Trade Destination Emphasis 5 (7-3)
Airlift Emphasis 5 (7-3)
Likeliness to Declare War 6 (8-4)
Likeliness to be Hostile 4 (6-2)
Likeliness to be Deceptive 7 (9-5)
Likeliness to be Guarded 7 (9-5)
Likeliness to be Afraid 4 (6-2)
Likeliness to be Friendly 7 (9-5)
Likeliness to be Neutral 4 (6-2)
Ignore City-States 4 (6-2)
Friendliness to City-States 5 (7-3)
Protection of City-States 7 (9-5)
Conquest of City-States 7* (9-5)
Bullying of City-States 4 (6-2)

* In the Fall 2013 patch for Brave New World, Bismarck's Conquest of City-States rating is reduced to a base of 4.

Personality and Behavior[]

Bismarck will usually try for either a scientific victory or a domination victory.

Bismarck will focus on Production Production, Science Science, and raising an exceptionally well-trained army consisting primarily of mobile units. He will take a balanced approach on offensive and defensive combats as well.

Bismarck prefers to protect any city-states that he does not try to conquer. Attempting to befriend one of his city-state allies is likely to result in a diplomacy penalty.

Bismarck is often friendly and loyal, but he is highly competitive and very willing to denounce and declare war on players who anger him, especially if he sees them as warmongers. Be watchful when you try to befriend him.

Bismarck has a tendency to expand and claim every spot of land left on the map once Ideologies come around, especially after adopting Order. Combined with his focus on Science Science and military, this gives him real potential to become a runaway if left unchecked.

Civilopedia entry[]


Otto von Bismarck, also known as the "Iron Chancellor," is perhaps the most significant figure in German history. During his long political career Bismarck unified Germany and founded the German Empire; Germany was transformed from a weak and loose confederation of states into a powerful united country that would come to dominate continental Europe.

Early Life[]

Descended of a noble Prussian family, Bismarck certainly inherited the arrogance of the Prussian Junker class. He was a poor student who excelled at dueling and was quite a historian and linguist. However, he spent much of his time drinking with the other aristocrats in their exclusive fraternity.

Unable to accept the discipline required for military service, Bismarck instead entered the Prussian diplomatic corps, where his skill quickly brought him to the attention of the Prussian Kaiser. Appointed to the German Federal Diet (congress), Bismarck worked to increase Prussian status and power within Germany. Eventually he would rise to the rank of Prussian Prime Minister, where after years of long struggle, he succeeded in unifying Germany under Prussian rule. Bismarck would accomplish this through crafty diplomacy, aided by a series of successful wars.

Foreign Policy[]

Once Germany was unified, Bismarck's main foreign policy aim was to keep the peace in Europe, mostly by isolating France, Germany's historic enemy. In this he was largely successful. He engineered a war with France in 1870 in order to draw several German states (Bavaria, Baden, and others) into the German empire. In the war, France was quickly defeated.

Having achieved his objective of acquiring the German states, Bismarck argued for fairly lenient terms, but the German people and military wanted more, and he was forced to annex the French provinces of Alsace and Loraine. Bismarck knew that this would be trouble in the long run − before the war he had told a colleague, "Supposing we did win Alsace, we would have to maintain our conquest and to keep Strasbourg perpetually garrisoned. This would be an impossible position, for in the end the French would find new allies − and we might have a bad time." This, of course, is exactly what happened in World War I, where Germany had a very bad time indeed.

Domestic Policy[]

Although an ardent conservative and monarchist, Bismarck was the first European leader to promote a system of social security for workers. He rebuilt the German monetary system, introducing for the first time a single currency. He also helped fabricate the new country's code of civil and commercial law. His benevolence was not universal, however; while emancipating the Jews, Bismarck also enacted laws aimed at restraining Germany's Catholics.

Judgment of History[]

As a diplomat, Bismarck's greatest weakness was his single-minded desire to weaken France. He was largely successful during his lifetime, but in doing so he made France into an implacable enemy, which would have dire consequences in the next century. Domestically, Bismarck's great flaw was his indifference to the lives of the German people. As Germany grew in power and stature, the people's lives improved but little. His social security system did some good, but he enacted that mainly to avoid having to make greater concessions to the German Socialists.

Bismarck was a great leader, perhaps the greatest European leader of the 19th century. His triumphs outweighed his defeats, and he almost single-handedly turned a group of bickering kingdoms into a mighty state. Although his policies did contribute to the disasters in Germany's future, those were more so a result of his successors' inability to adjust to the changing geopolitical climate in Europe.


  • Bismarck is remembered for the following quotes:
    • "The great questions of the time will not be resolved by speeches and majority decisions − that was the great mistake of 1848 and 1849 − but by iron and blood."
    • "Laws are like sausages, it is better not to see them being made."
    • "One day the great European War will come out of some damned foolish thing in the Balkans."
    • "We Germans fear God and nothing else in the world." ("Wir Deutschen fürchten Gott, sonst nichts in der Welt.")
  • Approximately 250 monuments ("Bismarck Towers") have been erected in his honor on four continents - Oceania, South America, Africa, and Europe.


Codename Quote (English translation) Quote (German) Notes
Attacked Corrupted villain! We will bring you into the ground! Verderbter Bösewicht! Wir werden Euch unter die Erde bringen!
Declares War I cannot wait until ye grow even mightier. Therefore, prepare for war! Ich kann nicht warten bis Ihr noch mächtiger geworden seid. Bereitet Euch also auf den Krieg vor!
Defeated Germany has been destroyed. I weep for the future generations. Deutschland ist zerstört worden. Ich weine um die zukünftigen Generationen.
Demand Give us what we demand, if ye want your wretched country to survive. Gebt uns, was wir verlangen, wenn Euer jämmerliches Land überleben soll. Never used in-game.
Gloat Well, I hope ye have learned your lesson. Na gut, ich hoffe Ihr habt jetzt Eure Lektion gelernt. Never used in-game.
Hate Hello So, out with it! Also - raus damit!
Hate Let's Hear It 01 And?! Und?!
Hate Let's Hear It 02 Come on! Macht schon!
Hate Let's Hear It 03 Well, tell me! Na, sagt schon!
Hate No 01 That is unacceptable! Das ist inakzeptabel!
Hate No 02 Ye can't be serious! Das kann doch nich' Euer ernst sein!
Hate Yes 01 Well, okay. Also, gut.
Hate Yes 02 It seems I can't refuse. Ich kann wohl nicht anders.
Intro In the name of the great German people, I bid you welcome. Im Namen des großen deutschen Volkes heiße ich Euch willkommen.
Neutral Hello What now? Was nun?
Neutral Let's Hear It 01 What did ye say? Was habt Ihr gesagt?
Neutral Let's Hear It 02 Move it! Vorwärts!
Neutral Let's Hear It 03 Yes? Ja?
Neutral No 01 No. Nein.
Neutral No 02 We do not accept. Wir nehmen es nicht an.
Neutral Yes 01 Agreed! Abgemacht!
Neutral Yes 02 Alright! In Ordnung!
Peaceful What do ye think about calling it a draw? Was haltet Ihr von einem Unentschieden?
Request It would be in your best interest, to carefully consider this proposal. Es wäre in Eurem Interesse, dass Ihr dieses Angebot sorgfältig prüft.


Bismarck Loading Screen (Civ5).jpg

Hail mighty Bismarck, first chancellor of Germany and her empire! Germany is an upstart nation, fashioned from the ruins of the Holy Roman Empire and finally unified in 1871, a little more than a century ago. The German people have proven themselves to be creative, industrious and ferocious warriors. Despite enduring great catastrophe in the first half of the 20th century, Germany remains a worldwide economic, artistic and technological leader.

Great Prince Bismarck, the German people look to you to lead them to greater days of glory. Their determination is strong and they turn to you, their beloved iron chancellor, to guide them once more. Will you rule and conquer through blood and iron, or foster the Germanic arts and industry? Can you build a civilization that will stand the test of time?


Civilization V Leaders [edit]
Ahmad al-Mansur BNW-only.pngAlexanderAshurbanipal BNW-only.pngAskiaAttila GodsKings5 clear.pngAugustus CaesarBismarckBoudicca GodsKings5 clear.pngCasimir III BNW-only.pngCatherineDarius IDido GodsKings5 clear.pngElizabethEnrico Dandolo BNW-only.pngGajah Mada BNW-only.pngGandhiGenghis Khan1Gustavus Adolphus GodsKings5 clear.pngHaile Selassie GodsKings5 clear.pngHarald Bluetooth1Harun al-RashidHiawathaIsabella1Kamehameha1Maria I BNW-only.pngMaria Theresa GodsKings5 clear.pngMontezumaNapoleonNebuchadnezzar II1Oda NobunagaPacal GodsKings5 clear.pngPachacuti1Pedro II BNW-only.pngPocatello BNW-only.pngRamesses IIRamkhamhaengSejong1Shaka BNW-only.pngSuleimanTheodora GodsKings5 clear.pngWashingtonWilliam GodsKings5 clear.pngWu Zetian
1 Requires a DLC

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