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Shaka, Zulu Representative
From Start Overrun combat advantage
Ancient Age +1 Movement for Warriors
Medieval Age Rapid city growth
Industrial Age +50% Gold production
Modern Age 1/2 cost Riflemen
Unique Units Impi Warrior

The Zulu people represent a civilization in Civilization Revolution.


Shaka (CivRev)

Shaka Zulu

Era Bonuses[]

The Zulus begin the game with a greater than normal chance to overrun the enemy. What this means exactly is that the Zulus require less of an attack advantage versus the enemy defense to get the enemy to flee without fighting and potentially inflicting casualties. The Zulus need only 4x strength, rather than the usual 6x.

Ancient: Warriors have +1 Movement

Medieval: Cities are treated as having an Aqueduct-style boost to population growth

Industrial: 50% more gold is produced by cities

Modern: 1/2 price Riflemen


The Zulus are capable of any victory condition, but are slightly better at peaceful victories.

Due to the increased movement of Impi Warriors, it is within the realm of possibility to take an opposing capital within the first few turns of a game, if the enemy is caught exploring with their units and have thus left the city defenseless or very lightly defended. This will result in gaining a huge advantage, particularly if you capture a civ that starts with a bonus technology (such as Spain). This is usually necessary for Domination Victory, as explained below.

This doesn't work if the capital is generated on an island, and an alternate strategy must be developed by the player.

1/2 cost Riflemen is a significant defensive bonus to the Zulu cities.

The increased city growth and gold production are the primary Zulu upgrades.

Cities are treated as having an Aqueduct-style boost to population growth, which stacks with the bonus from the Aqueduct itself. They also receive 50% Gold production, which combines well with the Medieval bonus due to the fact each city receives an Aqueduct for free once the 5000 gold mark has been reached.

Manifesting the populous cities in Wonders or Science production, supplemented by gold will lead to victory from those conditions. Obviously, a focus on producing gold will allow them to win Economic Victory.

If Attempting Domination[]

Try to get through the map as quickly as possible to avoid warriors becoming obsolete, as the +1 movement is the only offensive bonus they receive.

The benefit to Overrun is not quite as effective as the Aztecs' auto heal ability (which is useful for offense and defense), though it does mean Zulu units do not need quite as many elite upgrade bonuses to avoid frequent casualties. The problem with overrun is that it will prevent you from conquering enemy cities if you are too far ahead (overrun doesn't move your unit into the city, leaving the fleeing defender where it was).

City growth is so fast with the special ability and an Aqueduct (toggling between production and food as needed) that the Zulus can start with the intent for a domination victory (take a few combat technologies and capture 1-2 cities), then switch focus to economic, cultural, or scientific and overtake anyone with a moderate lead in those areas. This is useful If you wind up becoming too far ahead or behind to make a domination victory work.

Enemy Civ Specific Information[]

If Madrid (the Spanish capital) is conquered quickly using the Impis, you will then be able to train a Galleon in order to seize the various powerful artifacts (the Lost City of Atlantis, Knights Templar, etc.) scattered out in the sea (shallow and deep). This can be one of the most significant boons for the Zulus early in the game, almost always resulting in a win if it goes smoothly.

The Zulus gain the 50% Gold production ability sooner than the Aztecs, which can be a significant advantage if both civilizations are going for an economic win.

Civilopedia entry[]

The Zulu were never more than one unremarkable small Southern African tribe among many - until the coming of the great warrior Shaka Zulu, who was born sometime around 1787. Once in power Shaka instituted something of a military revolution among the Zulus, replacing the traditional "assegai" (a javelin-like throwing spear) with a shorter stabbing spear called the "lklwa." He also equipped his warriors with a larger shield which covered most of the soldier's body.

Under Shaka's command, the Zulu warriors would close to melee range with their opponents, where their shorter stabbing spears were more effective than the opposition's throwing weapons. Shaka also taught his warriors to fight in a new tactical formation known as the "buffalo horns." In this formation the center of the Zulu line would engage the enemy to hold them in position, while the right and left "horns" would move forward and envelop the enemy. Outflanked on right and left and equipped with inferior weapons, few enemies could stand up to the Zulu assault.

Within a decade, Shaka had accumulated an army of 50,000 warriors, defeated all of the surrounding tribes, and was master over most of the interior of what is now South Africa. Shaka set up a new capital for the Zulu at Bulaweyo, but his arrogance and cruelty caused dissatisfaction among his people. In 1828 Shaka was assassinated by his half-brothers.

It was into this picture of chaos and violence that the European settlers first began appearing onto the scene in the 1830s. The first European settlement in the Zululand region was the English colony of Port Natal (modern Durban). An English missionary went to live with the Zulu in 1837, and was tolerated by Shaka's successor, King Dingane. However, at the same time a group of Boer settlers known as the "Voortrekkers" (or pioneers) were moving north across the Orange River into the now-empty lands which had been vacated by tribes fleeing the Zulu. Dingane had given the Voortrekkers permission to settle in the area, but in 1838 - either as the result of a misunderstanding or because Dingane had planned it from the start - the Zulus attacked the newcomers.

This proved to be a huge mistake. At the Battle of Blood River, the Zulus vastly outnumbered their opposition, having 10,000 warriors fighting 400 Boers. Despite the odds, however, the Boers slaughtered their opponents, their firearms giving them an overwhelming advantage against their spear-wielding opponents. The Zulus were forced to allow the white men to settle in their territory, which became known as the Republic of Utrecht.

Following the battle, there was a generation of uneasy peace between the Zulus and the growing British and Boer presence in the region. However, after the discovery of diamond mines in South Africa in 1878, the British declared war and invaded Zululand on three fronts.

The Zulu warriors fought bravely (and much to the Europeans' shock managed to slaughter a British force at Isandlwana), but the British rifles and Maxim guns made the ferocity of individual Zulu warriors irrelevant, and the outcome of the war was never in doubt. The Zulu were defeated and Zululand was incorporated into British South Africa. The Zulus spent the next century under British and Afrikaner domination, forced to live under the racist apartheid laws of South Africa.

Following the fall of apartheid in the 1990s, however, today Zulus, the largest ethnic group in South Africa, enjoy full citizenship rights in their homeland.

Fun Facts[]

AmaZulu, another name for the Zulu nation, means "people of heaven."

September 22nd is a holiday known as Heritage Day among Zulu tribes. It marks the day of Shaka Zulu's death and commemorates his successes in creating a unified Zulu people.


  • The Domination Victory world record was set with the Zulu civilization. The record is 2800 BC.
  • In the game files, the music que for the Zulu leader is labelled "Mali," indicating that Mali was originally intended to be in the Zulus' place. It is unknown when this change took place in development, however.