[an error occurred while processing this directive] Game Information: Manual

Empire Concepts

Your empire is much more than people you rule. It is a living entity with unique characteristics and needs. For it to prosper you must take care of as many of these needs as possible, including: keeping your people happy, cultivating a thriving economy, and ridding your cities of crime. Because your choices will directly affect the future of your people, your leadership will define the nature and character of your empire.

As your empire expands, its needs will become increasingly complex. You will find many voices clamoring for their share of finite resources. You will have to weigh the costs and benefits of exploration, growth, expansion, and conquest. This section will allow you to get familiar with the issues you will need to manage. How you manage these things is entirely up to you.

Cities and Units

Your empire is comprised of two basic parts: cities and units.


Cities belong to the empire, but they are individual entities with their own unique makeup, policies, advantages, and disadvantages. Created by settlers, they are home to the citizens of your empire. They also contain the buildings and wonders you construct, and any tile improvements within their areas of influence. They each have land, population, and they all contribute their resources to the empire. It is up to you, as their leader, to decide how and when to minister to their needs. For a more in-depth introduction to cities, consult the section on page 42 of this manual.


Units are the soldiers, vehicles, and weapons of war that make up your military. There are myriad types of units, including offensive and defensive combat units, subversive and stealth units, as well as highly specialized units. Throughout the course of the game you will use units to explore the world, defend your cities, wage war, and various other things. Consult the Unit Concepts section of this manual for a complete introduction to units and their functions.

Food, Production & Commerce -

The Basic Resources

Much of your success in cultivating an empire depends on how you manage the basic resources of food, production, and commerce. These basic resources enable your cities and empire to function.




Food is the most essential resource in the game. Without it, you cannot sustain a population of much size. Production and commerce, the two other basic resources of the game are partially dependent on population size. Therefore, enabling your cities to produce and store copious amounts of food will be critical to your success as a leader.


The production resource represents the power of citizens to build and manufacture things. When you start building a unit, city improvement, or wonder, the production of the city determines how quickly the item is built.


Commerce represents the total market activity of your empire. Each city has some level of commerce, the fruits of which comprise your national treasury. You can use the gold in your national treasury for a variety of purposes: to Rush Buy items your cities are building, or for gifts to foreign nations to help increase their diplomatic regard for you.

Empire Manager

In managing your empire, you must make global policy decisions that affect every city and unit under your control, as well as local and city-based decisions. The three global settings correspond directly to the three basic resources, and determine how much your people work, how much they are paid, and how much they eat. Be careful, however. Your citizens will come to expect a certain standard of living. Their expectations will be based on the form of government under which you rule. Fail to meet their expectations and they will register their dissent.

Domestic Policy-Setting Rations, Workday and Wages

From the Empire Manager screen, you can make large-scale alterations to the lives of your citizens. Under the Domestic Policy tab, you can adjust the food, production, and commerce outputs of your empire. Remember, the changes you make here affect all cities.

At a glance, you can see how many cities you have, your empire’s population, how happy your people are, and your current form of government.


You can adjust how food is distributed by changing the amount of rations for each citizen. The amount of rations determines not only the quantity but also the quality of food that people eat.

Call to Power II calculates the total food production of all of your cities. The rations level determines the food requirements for your empire. This amount, along with losses from crime, is automatically deducted from the total collected. If there is a surplus, it will be stored for future use. If you set the rations below the level consumed by your people (and what is lost to crime), the balance will be extracted from the food surplus. If the surplus runs out, people will starve and your population will dwindle. The amount of food also has an impact on your population growth. If you feed your people less, your cities will grow faster. You may want to keep in mind the effect on happiness that rations has. People like to have large quantities of good food to eat. Deny them this, and your people may resent you.


By adjusting how many hours people work in a day, you will affect the total production output of your empire. Shorter workdays mean a proportionally smaller amount of production available to each city. After subtracting losses from crime and the upkeep costs of all existing improvements in your cities, the balance goes to your cities.

After determining the length of your workday, you can assess a public works tax. Public works enables you to build tile improvements. However, it is extracted from the total production of your empire. Therefore, a public works tax of 20% decreases the production levels of all of your cities 20% across the board, regardless of their individual production output. (See the Public Works section on page 21 for further information.)

The more production your cities have, the faster they can build units, improvements, and wonders. The speed at which your cities build will have a direct impact on your empire. Cities that can crank out units make you better prepared to explore, conquer, and defend. Cities that build improvements quickly tend to produce faster, be happier, and be more efficient. Shorter workdays make people happier. But you must weigh the needs of your cities, the demands of your military, the safety of your borders, and the need for public works to determine the workday length.


You can set the wages for your workers under the Commerce heading in the Domestic Policy Tab of the Empire Manager screen. You can also set a science tax, which comes out of the total commerce output of your empire.

Call to Power II calculates the total commerce from all of your cities. The wages for all of your workers are automatically deducted from the total collected, as are losses from crime. If there is a surplus, it goes into your treasury as savings. If your wages level exceeds available commerce, the balance will be extracted from your treasury. If your treasury is depleted, your cities will be forced to sell off improvements until the shortfall is covered.

After determining the wages level, you can set the science tax. Science requires money to fund scientific research that leads to the discovery of new Advances. Like the public works tax, the science tax is extracted "across the board" and affects all of your cities. High wages make your people happy. But higher wages make less funds available for science, which could end up hampering your progress. You may want to consider maintaining a treasury to facilitate diplomatic gifts and, most importantly, to Rush Buy items you need in a hurry.


As the leader of a nation, you are empowered by the citizens of your nation to govern many aspects of their lives. In return, your citizens expect to have many of their needs provided for, including food, shelter, and protection from harm. By providing for them, you make your citizens happy. In Call to Power II, the overall happiness of your populace is one of the measures by which you can gauge your effectiveness as a leader.

The happiness of your nation can have a powerful bearing on your ability to rule. Several factors contribute to happiness in both positive and negative ways.

Global Happiness Indicator

In the upper right hand corner of the screen, there is a colored indicator next to a "happy face" icon. This gives you your empire’s happiness level at a glance.

• Green indicates high levels of happiness. People feel well taken care of and safe in their homes. They take pride in their great nation, and even take the time to have a celebration in your honor from time to time.

• Yellow indicates contentedness. The basic needs of your citizens are met. People may have little to complain about-but they have little to celebrate as well.

• Red indicates extreme unhappiness! You are failing in your duties as a provider. Perhaps people are starving, being attacked by hostile forces, being overworked, or being underpaid. If you find your empire or a city in the red, you are dangerously close to losing the city to revolution.

Although the aggregate of your cities’ happiness ratings is shown in the Main Menu, each city has an individual happiness rating as well. Even if total happiness is high, you may have cities that are merely content, rioting, or even on the brink of revolution. It is important to manage the happiness of all of your cities.

It is critical that you know your people and their expectations. Depending on what form of government you have enacted, your people’s expectations will change. Your empire’s government type determines the effects of pollution and crime, modifies your rate of research, and limits amount of resources you can devote to research in the first place. Your government also determines the maximum size and number of cities that you can effectively rule. Citizens under different governments have different expectations for workday, rations, and wages. These factors in turn have the greatest impact on their happiness. Consult Government, on page 51, for more information.

Besides the global empire settings of rations, wages, and workday, there are several factors contributing to happiness on the city level. Such things as pollution levels, discontent associated with war, overcrowding, and crime all decrease happiness in your cities. The best way to remove the negative effects of these things is to build improvements in your cities that reduce crime, pollution, overcrowding, and war discontent.

How Do I Know If My Cities Are Happy?

View your cities in the City Manager screen and click the Status tab. You can find out what is affecting happiness in your cities and respond accordingly.

Happiness and Pollution

Every empire contributes to global pollution, which causes unhappiness in your cities and for your empire as a whole. Generating too much pollution has an impact on your own empire and others. If global pollution reaches a high enough level, flooding or other disasters may ensue. (See Pollution, on page 39, for more detail.)

Highly productive cities can pollute and even destroy their own surrounding terrain, so you will have to watch for the signs of pollution and manage cities accordingly. Larger cities especially, with improvements and workforces devoted to production, will most often generate more pollution than less industrialized or smaller cities. Certain improvements create pollution directly, like the Airport for example. You can counter this pollution by selling these improvements, or building others that actually reduce pollution by cleansing the environment. You can view the amount of pollution created in a city, or the resulting unhappiness that comes of it, from the City Manager screen. Click the Status tab to check on a given city and review the factors contributing to or reducing its level of pollution.

Happiness and War

Your people are sensitive to military units leaving their cities, and the loss of life in war. Your choice of government moderates the degree to which war discontent affects your empire, however, the resulting effect is invariably unhappiness. Like pollution, you can view the effects of war discontent, along with other factors affecting a city’s happiness, under the Status tab within the City Manager screen.

By exceeding the expectations of your citizens, you will prosper. Forsake them, and you may see your empire slip through your fingers as your people rise up against you.

Riots and Revolution

There will be times when your people are so upset with the conditions of their lives that they take to the streets in a righteous display of civil disobedience. If your people become discontent due to the many factors that decrease happiness, they will riot. You will receive a message indicating which of your cities is rioting when this occurs. You can also tell by viewing the city on the map. The city name will be in red, and there will be a yellow icon with a raised fist, the symbol of civil disobedience.

Riots are particularly devastating to your empire. While a city is rioting, it produces nothing. Production, food, science, and commerce activity grind to a halt. Because of this, it is important to maintain high levels of happiness in your cities.

How Do I Quell A Riot?

You are encouraged to find out what the problem is in a rioting city. Take a look at the happiness indicators in the Status tab in the City Manager screen. It will tell you what is affecting happiness, positive and negative. In a certain way, you can view a riot as indicating an imbalance of negative factors versus positive factors. Therefore, to make your people happy and quell the riot, you should increase happiness. You can assign workers as entertainers. You can build improvements that increases happiness, such as shrines and basilicas, or you can build improvements that reduce pollution, overcrowding, and war discontent.

Consider building happiness improvements before you have a riot on your hands. If not, you may find yourself devoting substantial resources to extinguishing the flames of discontent-resources you could be using in expanding, conquering, researching, and exploring.

The Price of Revolution

If conditions become deplorable in a city, the people will simply revolt. Cities that revolt do not merely stop working (as they do during riots), they completely break from your empire and form a new nation. You, as the leader, lose control of the city. This new empire will harbor a strong resentment toward you, so it is extremely doubtful you will be able to diplomatically negotiate the return of the city. If you wish to take back a revolting city, you must take it by force. Keep in mind, though, that the city will contain all of the units, improvements, and wonders you have built within it. Retaking a city may prove to be extremely difficult, so it is best to avoid the danger of revolution altogether by taking care of your peoples' needs.

Public Works

Public Works is a special pool of resources established to build Tile Improvements such as farms, roads, mines, airbases, listening posts, radar stations, and so on. Tile improvements can be built anywhere within the borders of your empire, but most of them are best placed with the radius of your individual cities. Farms are a good example, as they are best placed within a city’s radius-if they are not, you will have to wait until a city grows to encompass them before any benefit will be derived. You can learn more specifics about Tile Improvements in the Great Library.

Tile Improvements

Tile improvements are extraordinary tools to augment your empire's resource gathering operations, as well as enhance such things as vision scope, transportation, and border strength. One of the most effective ways to maximize the yield of food, production, and commerce from the terrain tiles surrounding your cities is by building tile improvements.

You add to the resources on a tile by building tile improvements. When you have discovered an Advance that enables a tile improvement, an icon will appear in the Tile

Tab on the Main Control Panel.

You must use the production in your Public Works to build Tile Improvements. Each improvement has a fixed cost and time that it will take to be completed. When you have enough public works to build a tile improvement, the icon becomes active. By clicking the icon, you activate the tile improvement mode. The cursor becomes a transparent picture of the improvement, which turns green over tiles upon which you can build, and red over tiles upon which you cannot build. You will also see information about the cost, in Public Works, and the adjusted values for food, production and gold, after any bonuses the tile improvement adds to the tile. The icons are disabled in the Tile Tab when you cannot afford to build them.

To build a Tile Improvement or Installation, click on the Tile Tab on the Control Panel. Select the improvement or installation you would like to build. Then, simply click on the terrain tile where you wish to build the tile improvement. To cancel, and exit tile improvement mode, right-click anywhere on the map.

Terraforming Tiles

Some tile types can be transformed into other, more useful tile types. This type of tile transformation is called terraforming. When you begin the game, you can chop down forests to create grasslands, provided you have built up enough production available. Other types of terraforming come with different Advances. Each type of terrain transformation costs a certain amount of public works and takes a certain amount of time.

Dead Tiles

Later in the game, you may start seeing blackened, charred tiles. These tiles have been destroyed by pollution. (See Global Pollution Disasters in Pollution on page 40.) This means that the tile can no longer produce food, production, commerce, or goods. You can repair this damage with terraforming, but it is expensive. Because of the cost (both social and financial), it is advisable to avoid generating too much pollution.


Other empires may have passed this way long before you, and may leave behind the remnants of their lives. These will be evidenced by the mysterious, archaic structures left behind. You enter them at your own risk, however. Occasionally, mercenaries who refused to abandon their home when their own empire died out will be impressed by the accomplishments of your nation and will wish to join forces with you. Sometimes the tomes in which an Advance was chronicled will be found and deciphered. Occasionally, a city is left behind which is still habitable and intact. Knowing the lure of such lucrative prizes, barbarians may set up an ambush in some of the ruins, and will lie in wait for the greedy and curious alike. Often outnumbered, your unit will have to flee or fight.





Wonders and Feats

Wonders Of The World

Wonders of the World embody the absolute zenith of human achievement for their time. Wonders are extraordinary achievements, and give the nations that build them bonuses in accordance with the particular kind of achievement they are. For example, the Great Wall of China was a tremendous achievement of military preparedness, designed to keep foreign invaders out of China and protect against barbarian hordes. In Call to Power II, the nation that builds the Great Wall can protect against barbarian invasions. Some wonders give a bonus to units, some give a bonus to the city in which they are built, and some give a bonus to an entire empire.

There are dozens of wonders in Call to Power II. They represent major achievements in science, art, industrialization, commerce, and architecture. Every wonder is unique. In other words, once it is built, no other nation may build it. Also, if a city containing a wonder is attacked, there is a chance the wonder itself will be destroyed. If this happens, the wonder is irrevocably destroyed. All of its benefits are lost forever.

How Wonders are Built

Scientific advances give you the opportunity to build wonders. Once you discover a certain advance, you can begin construction on a wonder. All wonders are built, like units and improvements, in a city's build queue. They usually take a considerable amount of time to build and their rush buy costs are substantial. However, given their extraordinary benefits to your empire, they are worth the wait and expense.

Feats Of Wonder

Feats of wonder represent major milestones in the course of history. They impart temporary, wonder-like bonuses to the nation who achieves them. For instance, the first empire to circumnavigate the world will have an advantage over his rivals, and may enjoy a movement bonus to all of his ships for a period of time. Likewise, a nation who is the first to discover key advances may find they have an edge in combat, science, or production for several turns. Throughout the game, there are feats of wonder in scientific achievement, exploration, building construction, and military conquest.


City Concepts

Cities are the lifeblood of your empire. Together they contribute the resources necessary to sustain and connect your people, improve the land, build infrastructure, and promote cultural and societal growth. Without them, you cannot begin to defend your people or utilize the resources around you. But it wasn’t always so.

Humanity developed as wandering tribes of hunter-gatherers, scouring the landscape in search of food to sustain them and shelter against the elements. What prey and resources they could find was quickly depleted, and so their migrations would inevitably continue. Moving from region to region, one season to the next, they found life harsh and unforgiving. Due to the harshness of the elements, vulnerability to attack, competition from fierce predators, and the threat of becoming prey themselves, they eventually tired of a life of uncertainty and wandering.

Nomads began to discover ways to cultivate the land and raise crops. This brought on increased food supply, which lead to an increase in tribal population. As they became more dependant on their crops for food, there was a need for more permanent settlements in order to tend the plant and protect the supply. These settlements became the first cities.

Creating Cities

Depending on the level of difficulty you have chosen, you will begin the game with one or two settler units, each representing a nomadic tribe. You will have to guide your Settlers across the landscape in search of habitable sites. When you tire of wandering, you too must settle on the land and sow the seeds of empire. After finding a suitable place to build a city, choose the Settle option from your settler’s list of actions.

• You can give the order to Settle by clicking the Settle order (city icon) under the Unit tab of the Control Panel.

• You can also give orders by right-clicking on the Settler or using the keyboard shortcut B key.

• If your Settler’s selection box is yellow, or if you have already moved him that turn, you will have to let him rest and wait another turn before he can settle.

When you order your Settler to settle, he will disappear and be replaced by a city. The name of your new city and a number representing your citizens will appear just above the city itself. Special icons may appear above your city later on. These will provide information about the status of your city, whether you have units garrisoned within, whether your city is rioting as a result of unhappiness, or whether an agent of another empire has affected your city.

You should start construction of a unit or improvement within your city as soon as it has been settled. An improvement is any building, structure, or object that enhances your city in some measurable way. For example, building a Granary will help your city to grow, and constructing a City Wall will help units to defend your city. Units are the mobile forces that comprise your army. You need to build some units to defend your cities and explore the territory around them. See The Build Manager, below, for more information on building things in your cities and managing build lists, or queues.

Where To Settle

In order for your city to thrive, you will have had to find a good place to settle. Generally, the best places to settle have some combination of grasslands, forests, mountains or hills, possibly a trade good as well as river or sea access. In searching for a suitable location to build a city, you should consider the following factors:


As you explore the world of Call to Power II, you may observe different colors of tiles signifying various terrain types. Each terrain type has values for food, production, and commerce that represent the land’s natural yield for each basic resource. The terrain types correspond to the kinds of terrain you are familiar with here on Earth-grasslands, mountains, tundra, sand dunes, and several others. You should consider these resource values before building a city. A city "works" not only the terrain tile on which it is built, but also the eight tiles immediately surrounding it. As a city grows in population, its area of influence will eventually spread out even further, as much as two more tiles in every direction for extremely large cities. Therefore, you should take into consideration the surrounding area and the resources they contain.


Your city’s rate of growth will depend on the amount of food available to it. A city must collect enough food to feed its citizens, and accumulate food in storage to bolster growth. When enough surplus food is stored, your city will grow in population.

You can adjust how much your people consume by reducing Rations in the Empire Manager. This will affect all cities, and will enable you to support a larger, albeit less satisfied population. Feeding them more will mean you can support fewer citizens, though they will be more content. (See Domestic Policy under Empire Concepts on page 17.)

Terrain tiles approximate real conditions on Earth, so it is not surprising that rivers, grasslands, plains, and shallow water are more fertile and produce more food. Forests are a moderate source of food, while Glaciers and Deserts provide no food.


This resource represents the raw materials necessary for your city to build units, improvements, and wonders. Production is also used for unit upkeep costs to maintain your military from turn to turn. Your city’s rate of production depends on the amount of production resources available to it and the number of workers and laborers allocated. (See Workers and Laborers under How Cities Work on page 28.)

Improvements you build in your cities will aid in food collection and production, generate commerce, and enhance your city’s defensive capabilities. Wonders built in your cities will provide similar benefits across your entire empire.

Mountains and Jungles are rich in mineral deposits and natural resources and provide ample production. Deserts are devoid of any production resources.


Commerce is more than money. More specifically, it represents the amount of revenue derived from the sale of miscellaneous goods and services and any other commercial activities on a given tile. This money, or gold, goes into your empire’s treasury from which wages and improvement maintenance costs are paid. You can use any commerce left over after paying these expenses to fund scientific research (see Science) or save for other expenses. Allocating commerce to science will help you to achieve new Advances more quickly.

You can right-click the terrain tiles for more information about the resources they contain, including food, production, and commerce. You can also see this resource information in the status text window at the bottom of the Control Panel.

You can also view any Goods or Movement Costs associated with tiles in this way. For more information on terrain types and their characteristics, consult the Great Library on page 68.


You will see natural resources on the map such as crab, oil, and jade. These are trade goods and they provide an alternative source of revenue. If a trade good appears on a tile within your city’s area of influence, you will be able to trade it on the open market. Building your city directly on top of a good will derive the same benefit as building next to it (provided it is within your city’s area of influence). If for strategic reasons you cannot situate your city so that its area of influence encompasses a trade good, try to build it near enough so it will eventually grow to control it. For more information on goods and trade see Trade on page 70.


Being able to protect your cities from hostile forces is of paramount importance. Although you will always be able to fortify units in your cities and build improvements that can bolster your cities’ defenses, you can place cities strategically on the map to make them harder to conquer. Certain terrain types actually provide a defensive bonus for defending units. Use this natural defensive bonus to make your cities more defensible. You only get a defense bonus from the single tile you build your city on. Hard-to-pass terrain within your area of influence will help slow enemy approaches. It will also slow your reinforcements.

Weigh the benefits and disadvantages of locating your cities by the sea. Ocean access is beneficial, but it also makes your cities vulnerable to naval attacks.

Proximity to Other Cities

If your cities are healthy and well managed, they will expand their area of influence and work even more of the surrounding terrain for resources. For this reason, you should avoid building cities too close to one another. Two cities cannot share the resources in a single tile-one or the other will always win out. Also, keep in mind that a city's area of influence can expand considerably over the span of time. Although they may start out small and remain so for hundreds of years, eventually cities may grow to control every terrain tile within a five-tile radius of the city center! Consider this when placing your cities. Cities without adequate space to grow will reach their limit early.

Distance to Capital

The capital of your empire is the first city you build, and it includes a free capitol building. Your capital is the seat of government for your empire, and it has a stabilizing effect on all of your other cities. The farther a city is from the capital, the less it benefits from this stabilizing influence. Critical information disseminated from the capital takes longer to reach far away cities and nearby cities benefit when their complaints reach the capital more rapidly.

Cities that are close to your nation’s capital are easier to manage, less prone to lawlessness and criminal activity, and are generally happier. Keep this in mind when you build cities far away from your capital city. You can build happiness and crime-reducing improvements to offset the unhappiness associated with distance from the capital. Building roads, railroads, or other transportation tile improvements to far away cities will speed communications with the capital and alleviate their distress.

Your entire empire will suffer distress if your capital is captured. You must defend this city at all costs. If it is lost, you will have to rebuild your capital in another city, though to do this you will need the Feudalism Advance.


How Cities Work

Each city you build uses its workers to draw the three basic resources of Call to Power II-food, production, and commerce-from the surrounding land. Your cities will then use these resources to grow, build things, to fund public works and research, and for unit upkeep and building maintenance.

Food & Growth

The rate at which your city grows depends on how much food is available. Each city must produce enough food to feed its citizens. If a city produces more food than it consumes, the excess is stored. However, if the population of a city consumes more than the city produces, and there is no food in storage to draw from, people will starve. For every turn a city starves, it loses one point of population. If a city in your empire is in danger of starving, you will be notified with a message.

There are several ways to increase a city’s food yield. You can build improvements in the city itself such as the granary and food silo to help your citizens more efficiently farm, process, and store food. Crime reducing improvements, like the courthouse, will indirectly lower losses of food to crime. You can build tile improvements around your city like farms or fishing nets to increase the amount of food available to it. These tile improvements must be placed within your city’s radius to be effective.

If you have the Agriculture advance, you can hire farmers (see Specialists under City Manager, page 35). Farmers grow food because of their expertise, not because of the terrain; however, they cannot collect production or commerce, so you should be careful not to handicap your city’s ability to collect these resources by converting too many workers to farmers.

As your population grows, overcrowding will occur. Overcrowding causes unhappiness and will ultimately limit your city’s ability to grow. Building certain city improvements, like the aqueduct or aqua-filter, can offset overcrowding and minimize unhappiness.

Production & Public Works

Your cities need production to build items, such as units, improvements, and wonders. The more production available to a city, the less time it will take to build these items. Production pays for unit upkeep, which includes training, vehicle maintenance, and other costs associated with maintaining a standing army. This cost is affected by your military readiness setting. The higher your readiness, the higher your cost.

As with food, there are various methods to increase your cities’ production. You can build structures in your cities to help increase production, like the Mill or Factory. As with food, a certain portion of production is often lost to crime. Limiting crime by building crime reducing improvements will curtail this. Additionally, you can place mines on surrounding tiles to augment production available to your cities. Hiring laborers (possible with the Industrial Revolution advance) will also bolster production in production-poor terrains.

Your city’s production contributes to a global fund for public works (see below), based on the percentage you choose in the Empire Manager screen. You can use these resources to build the roads, farms, mines, and defenses that tie your empire together. These tile improvements must generally be placed within your cities’ area of influence to be effective.


Commerce & GOLD

Commerce generated by your cities creates gold for your empire. Gold, in turn, can be used to pay your workers’ wages; to Rush Buy units, improvements, or wonders; or to make gifts to foreign nations. You can view the amount of gold available to your empire next to the gold coin icon in the menu bar at the top of the screen. Improvements built within your cities require maintenance, and the costs associated with that are also deducted from commerce. You can boost commerce in much the same way as you increase food or production.

Building certain improvements, like the Bazaar or Bank, will enhance commerce within your cities, generating more gold for your empire. Gold lost to crime will be limited when crime reducing improvements are built. You can build tile improvements like the Trading Post or the Shopping Mall to enhance commerce within a city’s area of influence. Hiring Merchants, enabled by the Economics advance, will boost commerce and generate more gold in terrains with low commerce.

Commerce within your cities also pays for scientific research conducted by your empire at large. You can assess the science tax from within the Empire Management screen.

The Build Manager

One of the most important things your cities can do is build things, including units, city improvements, and wonders. The Build Manager is where you determine what things to build in which cities, and in what order. The Build Manager screen will automatically appear as soon as you settle a city. If you have disabled this option, you can double click the new city to open the City Manager screen and then open the Build Manager from there. You can also open the Build Manager from the City Tab of the Control Panel. Select the city you wish to build something in using the city selector, and then click the Edit Queue Button on the left side of the tab (this button will contain an image of any item currently being built, and the number of turns to complete the project will be displayed in the button just below it). Alternatively, you can open the City Manager screen by right-clicking the city and selecting that option from the context menu.

You can make lists of things to build in any city (or multiple cities-see Advanced City Concepts) from the Build Manager. In the upper left corner of the Build Manager you will find the city selector. This is the same city selector found in the City Tab of the Control Panel, and in the City Manager screen. Click the left or right arrow buttons to select between your cities, or click the city name from a pop-up list of your cities, and click the city you want to build in.

To view available units, improvements, and wonders, click the appropriate button on the left hand side of the Build Manger, below the city selector and above the build options list box. You can scroll up and down on this list and sort items by Name, Attack, Defense, Armor, Range, Strength, Movement, or Production/Turns to Build.

Selecting any of these items will display a picture of it and specific information about that item in the upper right hand corner of the Build Manager.

You will need to add items to your Current Queue in order for your city to start constructing them. A queue is just a fancy word for the list of items you want to build in a certain order. Select items you wish to build and double-click on them to add them to your queue or you can use the Add or Insert Buttons to add items to the end of your queue or to insert them in front of other items. Once you have created a list of items to build, you can select them and move them up or down within the queue using the buttons to the right of your Current Queue.

Selecting items in your Current Queue will update the picture and information displayed in the upper right hand corner of the Build Manager.

Use the Delete and Clear Buttons to the right of your Current Queue to delete individual items, or clear the queue altogether and start again. See Advanced City Concepts, on page 37, for more information on creating and loading custom queues.

You also have the option to Rush Buy the item at the top of the queue. Click the Rush Buy Button below the picture of the current building item and that item will be completed at the beginning of the next turn. Rush Buying an item costs gold as opposed to production. While it is the quickest way to build an item, it can cost in gold up to ten times the amount of production required to build the item across a number of turns.

What should I build?

Units are essential for protecting against your enemies and exploring, while City Improvements help your city grow, improve its efficiency, and add to its defenses. Wonders can greatly impact your overall empire. These needs must be weighed carefully when deciding what to build-and what order to build in.

Discovering new Advances can add new items to build, but they can also cause some to be obsolete and unavailable.

Building Units

Units make up your military and include soldiers, vehicles, boats, aircraft, and other, more subversive characters like spies, clerics, and lawyers. Unlike cities, your units are mobile and can be used to explore the world around you, settle new cities, engage the enemy in combat, and defend your cities or parts of the map. See Unit Concepts, page 42, for a description of the various types of units.

Units are created in cities, but they belong to your empire. They can move from city to city, across your empire, and beyond. Because units are part of your empire’s military and can be used to defend any city, all cities must contribute production to support them. You will have to weigh the cost benefits of maintaining a large standing army. When your empire cannot afford to feed, clothe, equip, and shelter its military, your army will be reduced when your units are automatically disbanded. For more on military support costs see Military Support Costs and Military Readiness under Unit Concepts on page 42.

When using your units to defend a city, it is a good idea to fortify them to gain an added defensive bonus. Simply move your units to the desired city and press the F key, right-click the unit and select Fortify from the context menu, or click the Fortify icon from the Unit tab of the Control Panel. To move a unit out of a city, select the city, then click and drag the selected unit to your desired destination. Use the Unit tab to select between multiple units.

You can build most units once you have the technology, or Advance, to create them. Some special units require you to have a specific form of government. For example, the cleric cannot be built unless you are a Theocracy. You can only build Fascists if you have chosen Fascism as your government. As your level of technology advances, some of your more primitive units will become obsolete. When this happens, you will no longer be able to build them; however, you can keep obsolete units you have already built for as long as you like or until they are lost in combat or disbanded.

Building Improvements

Improvements are any buildings, structures, or systems that benefit the cities in which they are created. While they benefit your empire indirectly, they do not help other cities. Improvements may enhance all aspects of a city, from defensibility and attack potential to happiness, food storage, and production capabilities. The effects of improvements are cumulative. For example, an improvement that increases production by 25% plus another improvement that increases production by 50% will cumulatively increase your city’s production by 75%.

You will want to choose improvements to build based on your empire’s goals and the needs of your individual cities. For example:

Granary: The granary increases your city’s ability to store food, and hence its ability to grow.

Mill: The mill boosts your city’s production capabilities, enabling you to build units, improvements, or wonders more rapidly.

Shrine: This improvement increases the happiness in a city, which will offset dissatisfaction from pollution, war, crime, overcrowding, or other factors.

Your improvements must be maintained, and a certain amount of gold is deducted from your Commerce at the beginning of each turn for all improvements other than your Capitol. If your commerce, or income, is insufficient, these costs will be taken out of your savings (see Empire Concepts, page 17, for more information). Improvements will be automatically sold when you do not have enough income or savings to maintain them.

Improvements can be sold for gold, or destroyed when your cities are attacked. They can also be destroyed by nuclear attacks and nano-warfare attacks. The nano-attack is particularly deadly. If successful, it can destroy improvements in a city and can even spread to other cities! See Unit Concepts, page 17, for more information on special unit attacks and abilities.

Improvements that are sold are worth, in gold, a fraction of their original cost in production. To sell an improvement, go to the Inventory tab of the City Management screen, select the item from the list, and click the Sell Button. When you fear your city cannot be defended, you might want to sell your improvements to recoup some of the inevitable loss. You may also want to reduce the amount of commerce, or gold, going to building maintenance to get quick access to enough gold to rush buy critical units.


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