Civilization Wiki

The Civilization series has many terms related to it. This is an incomplete list, which may never be able to satisfy particular standards for completeness. Currently, there is no standard for what terms belong on this page, but that may change depending on how this page evolves.

Contents: Top - 0–9 A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


1 Unit Per Tile (1UpT)
Concept introduced in Civ5 which limited the number of units allowed on a single tile to one.[1]
2K Games
Publisher of Civilization IV, V, VI, Revolution 1 & 2, and Beyond Earth.
A genre which the Civilization series is part of. It is an abbreviation for Explore, Expand, Exploit, Exterminate.


Alpha Centarui game cover

Alpha Centauri
The closest star system to the Solar System. This is the destination of the Spaceship in most Civilization games, to which the Science Victory is connected. It is also the setting of Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri, a spinoff of the Civilization series.
A popular Civilization forum site (



Christopher Tin - Baba Yetu (Official Music Video)

Official "Baba Yetu" music video

Baba Yetu
The award-winning Civilization IV song created by Christopher Tin. The whole song is the Lord's Prayer in Swahili. "Baba Yetu" translates as "Our Father" in Swahili.
Barbarian or Barb
Non-playable "civilization" that cannot win but instead goes on rampages trying to destroy other civilizations.
The name of the science yield in some Civilization games. Technically, these are represented by flasks, not beakers.[1]
Beaker (Civ2).png Civ2  Science (Civ3).png Civ3   Beaker (Civ4).png Civ4  Science Civ5   Science Civ6  Science CivBE  
In Civ1, these are called Bulbs. Science (Civ1).png
Strategy where player directs all of their efforts toward a particular technology or civic.[1]
Build Order (BO)
The order in which a city produces units, buildings, wonders, etc.[1]


Carpet of Doom
An area of a map with large number of units in Civilization games that only allow one unit per tile. This is similar in concept to the "Stack of Doom" found in games that allow users to have more than one unit per tile.[1]
Civilization Fanatics' Center or CivFanatics
Another popular Civilization news and forum site (
Civilization or Civ
A faction in the Civilization game series. Also refers to the game series when capitalized.

The Civilization II Civilopedia

The name given to the in-game reference section of Civilization games.
Civil disorder
A state of near-anarchy in a city if a city is sufficiently unhappy. Found in the earlier Civilization games.
Civil war
May refer to:
  1. A game mechanic in Civilization I and II in which an enemy's capital is conquered and the losing civilization is split into two.
  2. Several scenarios based around the American Civil War.
A statistic which represents a civilization's artistic, philosophical, and social development and determines how quickly the borders of a city expand. Introduced in Civ3.
Culture (Civ3).png Civ3   Culture (Civ4).png Civ4   Culture Civ5   Culture Civ6   Culture CivBE
Culture Bomb
A game mechanic that allows the player to gain several tiles from an opponent. The tactic originated in Civilization IV, where Great Artists can be used to bring a large amount of culture to a city, greatly expanding the land a city claimed into territory originally claimed by opposing civilizations.[2]


Domination Victory image in Civ5

The highest difficulty level in many Civilization games. The term is often used as an adjective meaning "very difficult" by when used by Civilization fans.[3]
The military victory condition in most Civilization games.


Eternal War
A Civilization II game created by the Reddit user Lycerius. The game had been played on and off for over for a decade, in which the world has become a "hellish nightmare of suffering and devastation" in which all civilizations have been locked in a 1700-year war. The Reddit post about the game, posted in 2012, attracted considerable press and has spawned fan fiction and a wiki.


Future Tech discovered in the original Civilization

The current developer of the Civilization series. This fictional resource Firaxite in Beyond Earth was named after the company.
Future Tech or Future Technology
The final technology that can be researched in Civilization games, representing the continuing advance of science. This tech can be researched multiple times, providing extra Victory Points for the player.


Goody hut
A game mechanic which encourages players to explore the map. Goody huts are randomly distributed on different tiles throughout the map. Moving a unit onto a goody hut usually rewards the unit's owner with something positive, but occasionally these can lead to barbarian attacks. The Civilization series does not have a consistent name for goody huts, calling them Minor Tribes, Tribal Villages, Ancient Ruins, or native villages. The Beyond Earth game calls them resource pods while the Colonization games call them Lost City Rumors.


Infinite City Sprawl (ICS or "smallpox" in Freeciv)
Strategy where players build as many cities as they can as close as possible.[4]


Term for production in Civilization IV and V as well as the Colonization series. Production was called Shields in earlier Civilization games.
Hammer (Civ4).png Civ4   Production Civ5   Hammer (Col).png Colonization


MicroProse Logo

The original publisher of the Civilization series.


Natural wonders
Unique terrain features found in Civilization V and VI, which provide the cities and units near them benefits.

Nuclear Gandhi Meme

Nuclear Gandhi
An in-game joke said to be based off a bug found in the original game, which was eventually fixed. This bug made the Indian leader Mohandas Gandhi, historically known for his use of nonviolent resistance, threaten players with nuclear warfare in the late game. See the well-written Wikipedia article on the topic.



Welcome to CivAnon

Civilization ad spoofing Civilization addiction

One City Challenge
A game option in some Civilization games where the player can own only one city
One More Turn
A phrase often used to describe the addictive nature of the video games.[5] While this phrase may be used in reference to many games, the Civilization developers use it in marketing materials as an unofficial motto of the series.[6]


Settle in Place (SIP)
To found one's first city at the same location that the initial Settler spawned at the start of the game.[1]

Sid Meier

Sid Meier
The creator of the Civilization series. His name a brand in itself, and is a part of the full title of the main Civilization and Colonization series games along with a large number of non-Civilization games that he has produced.
The name of production yields in Civilization I, II, and III. Called Hammers in Civ4 and Civ5.
Shield1.png Civ1   Shield (Civ2).png Civ2   Shield (Civ3).png Civ3
Stack of Doom
A strategy used in Civilization games up to Civ4 in which players would place a large number of units on a single tile.[7] This strategy is not available in Civilization V and beyond due to due to the one unit per tile game mechanic. A similar "Carpet of Doom" term has been coined for a large mass of units in these newer games.[8]


Tall (play style)
Strategy where a player founds a small number of cities, but builds them up as much as possible. A quality over quantity strategy. See "Wide."


We Love the King Day (WLtKD)
Special event in most Civilization games with occurs in cities with certain Happiness or when other conditions are met. Usually this celebration results in an increase in productivity or other bonuses.
Wide (play style)
Strategy where a player expands as quickly as possible, at the expense of improving their existing cities. A quantity over quality strategy. See "Tall."
Specialized one-of-a-kind buildings that can only be built once per civilization and can confer great benefits to whoever owns them. This is also a mechanic in Starships.


Zone of control
Rules that restrict military unit movement close to units controlled by another power.

See also[]