Great People are the artists, merchants, engineers, scientists, or warriors who can singlehandedly change the course of a civilization. In Civilization VI, each Great Person is an individual with their own name and effect based on their historical influence. Unlike the Civilization V system, Great People are global: they are visible to all players, and they can be visibly competed over between all players.
Great People are Civilian units and have a Movement of 4 and a Combat Strength of 0.
Types of Great People
→ For a list of all the specific Great People see: List of great people
- Great Admiral
- Great Artist
- Great Engineer
- Great General
- Great Merchant
- Great Musician
- Great Prophet
- Great Scientist
- Great Writer
Generating Great People
Great People can be earned by earning enough of the right type of points, and can only be earned by civilizations (not Barbarians or city-states). Each type of Great Person has their own points that are tracked separately. Great Scientist Points cannot count as Great Artist Points, and so on. The number of points needed to earn a particular Great Person depends on that Great Person's era. A Renaissance Era Great Scientist will cost fewer Great Scientist Points than a Modern Era one.
These points come from a variety of sources:
- Districts - Each district, and the buildings within it, provide points towards its associated Great Person type. This is the slow, but steady source of points.
- City Projects - This is an active approach for players to aim for a particular Great Person they want and overtake competing players. For each available Great Person type, any city with its associated district has access to a special project in its production queue. For example, when a Great Prophet is available, cities with Holy Site districts can choose "Holy Site Prayers – 5 Turns" in their production queue. Choosing one of these projects greatly increases the Great People points for that type once it is completed. These projects also provide yields when they are underway, and can be repeated multiple times.
- Other Bonuses - Points can also be generated through government policies, wonders, unique civilization abilities, etc.
At any given time, one great person of each type (Great Admiral, Artist, Musician, Writer, Engineer, General, Merchant, Prophet, Scientist) is available to all civilizations, and everyone can see everyone else's progress toward earning each each of the people that they're trying to reach. Each time a great person is recruited, the point cost for the next person of that type is increased for all civilizations. You can also choose to pass over a currently available great person in hopes of getting access to a better one. Passing on recruitment costs a fixed number of Points, and you will not be able to recruit a different Great Person of the same type until the great person you passed on is recruited by another civilization at a discounted rate (the original cost less the number of points you gave up to pass on them). You still accumulate additional Points while waiting for a new Great Person to become available.
Players can also "rush" a Great Person with Patronage by spending an amount of Gold or Faith proportional to the amount of points still needed to recruit the given person. This cannot be done if someone already has enough points to recruit that Great Person, or if the player has previously passed over that Great Person. Great People can also be generated by certain wonders ( e.g. the Stonehenge wonder creates a Great Prophet).
Using Great People
Each individual Great Person has a different effect inspired by history. Most effects are strongly linked to a particular era of play and are not optimal for use outside of that time. The effects fall into two broad categories:
A Birth Effect happens as soon as the Great Person is spawned on the map and do not need to be activated, acting instead as a passive bonus. These are mostly used for Generals and Admirals (ex. +5 combat strength for units within 2 tiles of a General), however certain other Great People also have passive effects.
An Action Effect must be activated by the Great Person by using a "charge" at a certain location. The number of charges, the type of location needed, and the effect activated will vary based on the individual. Most individuals only have 1 charge and can only activate at a district matching its type (ex. most Great Scientists have 1 charge and must use it at a Campus). Like other charge-based units, the individual will disappear when all charges are depleted. Great Artists, Musicians, and Writers typically have 2 or 3 charges, each of which creates a great work of the corresponding type.
Note: The Prophets do not have a different effect, as they can only create a religion.