Gold is one of the main statistics in Civilization VI. It is used as the main standardized currency not only of your empire, but also in the entire game world. It is needed for maintaining infrastructure and armies, for trading with other nations and more. Unlike most other statistics, the accumulated amount of Gold is explicitly manifested in the empire's treasury, and is always visible in the upper left corner of the UI.
Right next to the treasury you can see your gold flow — the current difference between expenses and income in your empire — which is added or subtracted from the treasury at the beginning of each turn. Unlike other stats, you can have positive or negative gold flow, and the latter may severely hamper your development. Note that your gold flow may sometimes change between turns (for example, due to the beginning of a diplomatic deal, or a switch in Policies), so the number you see at the end of each turn may not always match the actual change in your treasury.
The uses of Gold are many and diverse. Although Gold is not essential for the basic development of your civilization or its cities (this is reserved for other stats such as Culture, Science, etc.), it is still absolutely necessary, since being the standard currency in the game, it is used to pay for all regular expenses of your empire. Unlike other stats, each turn there is automatic deduction from the treasury, used to pay for the maintenance fees of your units, buildings, etc. What is left you may decide to spend on special activities, such as trading with other leaders, or paying to purchase something.
Gold is required to pay the upkeep, or maintenance cost, of almost every unit and building in the game, as well as all specialty Districts (except for the Commercial Hub and the Harbor, which pay for their own upkeep with the Gold they produce). While unit maintenance costs are initially small (around 1-3 Gold), they usually scale with the game era and can become quite large late in the game. A Swordsman from the Classical Era, for example, has a maintenance cost of 2 Gold, whereas a Jet Fighter from the Information Era has a maintenance cost of 8 Gold. Building and district maintenance costs are fixed. Note that the very first units in the game, the Warrior and the Slinger are so simply outfitted that they need no maintenance.
All of these maintenance costs are deducted automatically from the treasury at the beginning of each turn. There is no way to avoid paying maintenance costs, but one may attempt to diminish them using Policies:
- Conscription reduces unit maintenance cost by 1 Gold per unit; it is later replaced by:
- Levee en Masse, which reduces unit maintenance cost by 2 Gold per unit
- In Rise and Fall the Second Strike Capability policy also reduces maintenance cost of all Nuclear devices by 50%.
In-City Spending Edit
- To purchase most units and buildings within a city, if you already fulfill all their requirements (technology, districts, other buildings, etc.). They will appear instantly, and the buildings' effects will kick in immediately. Units, however, will appear with no Movement points, so you will not be able to use them until next turn. Note that you are not able to purchase units if there are other units of the same class already present in the same city (or District). Additionally, the price of most Civilian units scales every time you purchase them - the more you buy a certain unit, the more expensive it will become.
- To expand the territory the city (and thus your empire) controls. You may instantly purchase tiles that are immediately adjacent to tiles you already own, up to three tiles away from the City Center. Note that the price grows the farther the tile is, and will also scale with technological and civic development.
There are ways to reduce the above costs, both by Policies and by certain Governments.
Diplomatic Deals Edit
Gold is often used as a part of deals with the leaders of other civilizations. You may trade both bulk amounts of Gold (which are deducted only at the time of the deal) or gold-per-turn (GPT) with another civilization, which will effectively alter your gold flow for the time of the deal.
Other Uses Edit
Gold may be used to attract Great People via patronage. This is especially useful for empires that developed their Gold capabilities while neglecting other aspects of the game, and can't manage to produce enough GPPs to beat the competition.
Terrain and Resources Edit
These will be your main sources of Gold at the beginning of the game. Gold from terrain is not as scarce as in Civilization V: Brave New World, yet not as abundant as Civilization V: Gods & Kings. Coastal tiles and the Oasis feature both grant a base yield of +1 Gold for being worked.
- Cocoa: +3 Gold
- Cotton: +3 Gold
- Diamonds: +3 Gold
- Furs: +2 Gold
- Gypsum: +1 Gold
- Ivory: +1 Gold
- Salt: +1 Gold
- Silver: +3 Gold
- Truffles: +3 Gold
- Whales: +1 Gold
- Wine: +1 Gold
- Copper: +2 Gold
- Crabs: +2 Gold
Tile Improvements Edit
A few tile improvements grant bonus Gold yields. The most important of these are the Camp (+1 Gold; +1 Gold with Synthetic Materials) and the Plantation (+2 Gold; +1 Gold with Globalization). Both of these provide their initial bonus Gold from the very start of the game, which makes them important sources for a nascent empire.
Late in the game, the Seaside Resort may turn into a major Gold source! Each one nets Gold equal to its Appeal rating, and since Seaside Resorts may only be constructed on tiles with Appeal of 4 or greater, they are capable of outproducing any other single tile in your territory (excluding some improved Luxury Resources)!
Trading and Trade Routes Edit
One of the major ways to obtain Gold is via Trade Routes, which become available soon after the start of the game, after researching the Foreign Trade Civic. Trade Routes to international destinations (both other nations and city-states) will garner large amounts of Gold income, especially later in the game when you've established Trading Posts and extended the range of your routes. Note that making routes to city-states of which you're the Suzerain won't net additional income! Domestic Trade routes may also provide Gold with certain Policies.
You can also get substantial income from making trading deals with other civilizations. There are many things you may trade to the other leaders, getting either GPT or single large payments of Gold in return.
The problem is that bad diplomatic relations hamper severely trading deals, up to the point of making them impossible! A civilization striving for a Domination Victory, for example, will find it significantly more difficult to strike deals due to the warmongering penalties it has incurred. Not only that, but it will have to be very careful where it sends its Traders - other civilizations which are at war with it will plunder the Trade Routes, severely limiting this income possibility.
Districts and Buildings Edit
In the middle game your main source of Gold will switch towards its dedicated district: the Commercial Hub. Its adjacency bonuses grant extra Gold and are fairly easy to activate (due to the prevalence of River and Sea settlements). Its buildings, the Market, the Bank, and the Stock Exchange, also provide massive boosts (+3, +5, and +7 Gold respectively), and its Specialists grant +4 Gold each!
Trade city-states grant up to +8 Gold in every Commercial Hub district in your empire (and in Gathering Storm also in every Harbor), based on the number of Envoys assigned to that particular city-state. The Capital gets an additional +4 Gold per city-state.
Although the Commercial Hub district is the main source of district Gold income, the Harbor district creates substantial Gold income as well. Its Specialists grant +2 Gold each, it generates Gold adjacency bonuses, and its Lighthouse and Seaport grant +1 and +2 Gold respectively.
Several Wonders grant bonus Gold upon completion, including:
- Big Ben: +6 Gold; doubles the current amount of Gold in the builder's treasury upon completion
- Casa de Contratación (): +15% Gold to every city that is not on your original continent
- Colossus: +3 Gold
- Great Lighthouse: +3 Gold
- Great Zimbabwe: +5 Gold; +2 additional Gold on every Trade Route originating from this city for every bonus resource in this city's territory
- Machu Picchu (): +4 Gold
- Petra: +2 bonus Gold yield on all Desert tiles in this city
Gold can also be obtained from natural wonders:
- Cliffs of Dover: +2 Gold
- Delicate Arch (): +1 Gold yield to adjacent tiles
- Lake Retba (): +2 Gold
- Piopiotahi: +1 Gold yield to adjacent tiles
- Sahara el Beyda (): +4 Gold
- Yosemite: +1 Gold yield to adjacent tiles
- God King: +1 Gold in your Capital
- Caravansaries: +2 additional Gold from all Trade Routes
- Conscription: Unit maintenance reduced by 1 Gold per turn per unit
- Merchant Confederation: +1 Gold from each of your city-state Envoys
- Native Conquest: Combat victories over units from earlier eras provide Gold equal to 50% of the combat strength of the defeated unit
- Town Charters: +100% additional Gold from Commercial Hub adjacency bonus
- Naval Infrastructure: +100% additional Gold from Harbor adjacency bonus
- Economic Union: +100% additional Gold from Commercial Hub and Harbor adjacency bonus
- Triangular Trade: +4 additional Gold from all Trade Routes
- Free Market: +100% additional Gold yield from Commercial Hub district buildings
- Colonial Taxes: +25% additional Gold in cities not on your original Capital's continent
- Raj: +2 Gold from all city-states you're Suzerain of
- Public Transport: Receive 50 Gold per Appeal of a tile when replacing a Farm with a Neighborhood district
- Levée en Masse: Unit maintenance cost reduced by 2 Gold per unit
- Market Economy: Your international Trade Routes provide an additional +1 Gold per strategic resource improved at the destination
- Third Alternative: +4 Gold from each Research Lab, Military Academy, and Power Plant
- Ecommerce: +10 additional Gold from international Trade Routes
Other Sources Edit
Finally, Gold may be procured via three distinct founder beliefs:
- Church Property grants the founding civilization +2 Gold for each city following their Religion.
- Stewardship grants the founding civilization +1 Gold for each Commercial Hub of each city following their Religion.
- Tithe grants the founding civilization +1 Gold for every 4 followers of their Religion.
- The unique tile improvement of Scythia, the Kurgan, grants +1 Gold; +1 Gold with Guilds; +1 Gold with Capitalism.
- The unique tile improvement of China, the Great Wall, grants +1 Gold for each adjacent Great Wall.
- The unique tile improvement of Persia, the Pairidaeza, grants +2 Gold and an additional +1 Gold for each adjacent Commercial Hub or City Center.
- The unique building of Poland, the Sukiennice, grants +4 Gold for each domestic Trade Route.
- The unique district of England, the Royal Navy Dockyard, grants +2 Gold if built on a different continent than England's Capital.
- The unique district of Kongo, the Mbanza, grants +4 Gold.
- Nkisi, the civ ability of the Kongolese, grants them bonus Gold for each Relic, Artifact, and Great Work of Sculpture in their civilization.
- All Roads Lead to Rome, the civ ability of the Romans, grants them extra Gold for each Trade Route going through one of their cities.
- Treasure Fleet, the civ ability of the Spanish, grants them extra Gold for each of their inter-continental Trade Routes.
- Satrapies, the civ ability of the Persians, grants them +2 Gold from each each domestic Trade Route.
- Mediterranean's Bride, the leader ability of Cleopatra, grants her +4 additional Gold for each of her Trade Routes to international destinations. Additionally, other civilizations' Trade Routes to Egypt grant her +2 Gold.
- Lithuanian Union, the leader ability of Jadwiga, grants her +4 Gold from each Relic.
- Sahel Merchants, the leader ability of Mansa Musa, grants him +1 Gold to Trade Routes per flat Desert tile in the sending city.
- Favorable Terms, the leader ability of Poundmaker, grants +1 Gold to the receiving city of Trade Routes per Camp or Pasture in the receiving city.
- Mali's Mandekalu Cavalry grants Gold equal to 100% of the defeated unit's combat strength.
- If the Secret Societies Game Mode is enabled, once the Voidsingers reach the Medieval Era, each city earns Gold per turn equal to 20% of its Faith per turn rate.