What’s new in Civilization 6 New Frontier Pass 4 – Babylonian Pack

The Civilization 6 New Frontier Pass is a set of 6 DLCs releasing over the course of a year – March 2020 to March 2021. With four of these packs already out, the bi-monthly DLC system is working wonders for Civilization 6 fans, their calendars interspersed with some thrilling new updates to the base game that is changing the way they strategize and conquer the world, bringing never seen before Civilizations, game modes, and updates to previous builds.

With the 4th pack out, not only has a brand new civilization come to expand the ever-growing list of leaders and civilizations but a special new game mode has also been introduced that brings back heroes and legends of yore decked with extremely powerful unique abilities.

All these new civilizations, unique units, modes, and updated game algorithms mean that the game strategies you hitherto relied on are now obsolete. But if you’re a true CivFanatic ever inspired to strategize anew and expand and conquer, then here’s everything you need to know to make your way through the hugger-mugger of the New Frontier Pass 4 to reconsider and revamp some of your world-domination strategies.

Babylonian Civilization – Eureka!

Once a minor science-based city-state, now a full-fledged Civilization – Babylon has come far. Historically, the Babylonian empire was renowned for its scientific and technological advancement as well as its governmental and architectural designs, ingenious for its time. All this has been carefully leveraged by Firaxis to bring the reins of the science-heavy Babylonian Civilization under your command.

Babylon’s Unique Ability

Babylon’s unique ability is the Enuma Anu Enlil – Eurekas provide all of the Science for technologies, not just the 50% reserved previously. That means by just completing the Eureka action, you can unlock the tech fully. Finally, all that Tech tree knowledge accrued over countless hours poured into the game will pay off. Playing with Babylon is mostly going to be synonymous with ripping through the Tech tree and getting an early lead on other Civs that are hard-researching and grinding through their tech-tree.

Researching technologies has never been more satisfying for the player, or deadlier for other Civs. With it, the Babylonian Civ can effectively get far-flung technologies much earlier than others, build districts, wonders, and units that are way ahead of their time, turning the tide in their favor regardless of their initial position. Such a boost is unheard of and can change the game around quickly if you pay attention to the Eureka requirements for the technologies that you’re aiming to get.

But is this Babylonian unique ability a Civ killer? It would have been so had Firaxis not slashed Babylonian Science output per turn by 50%, and understandable so, since their unique ability would have undermined every other Civ in the game in every respect.

So, with the powerful Eureka and a minus 50% science output, the Babylonian civilization is quite balanced and though other players would always be wary of Babylon, they needn’t think themselves cheated. Babylon’s outrageous tech conversions also mean that they would be a sure-fire target for espionage and stealing tech boosts since science and tech are what the Babylonians thrive on, the same way Gold is for the Malians, and Culture for the French and the Greeks.

Hammurabi’s Unique Leader Ability

Babylonian leader ‘Hammurabi’ is all about ushering in the new era in a rush. His unique ability ‘Ninu Ilu Sirum‘ lets you construct the lowest production cost building in a specialty district for free when that district is built for the first time. That means that you get a library already built on your Campus when you construct it for the first time. Same with other specialty districts: a Market in a Commercial Hub, a Shrine in your Holy Site, Barracks in an Encampment, a Workshop in your Industrial Hub, an Amphitheater in your Theater Square, and whichever important districts that you can think up.

As such, the Babylonian civilization doesn’t have to fret over hard-producing the (first) building in a newly constructed specialty district. The earlier you get district buildings, the earlier the snowball effect kicks into gear, bringing with it great people early, unlocking the Civ tree earlier, and giving you enough edge over others to keep driving the game in the direction you choose.

In the early game, even if you take your time to carefully weigh and consider the ever-important capital settlement location, the Babylonian empire can be up and running in no time. On top of that, when other districts are constructed for the first time (except Government Plaza), Babylonians receive an extra envoy, thereby giving them enough diplomatic currency to change World policies and win over friends and allies.

Hammurabi, much like the historical king, is an emperor focused on science, district construction, diplomacy, and alliances. But is that how you see Hammurabi? The flexibility afforded by the swift Tech-tree domination and district building can translate to any victory route you wish to focus on – Diplomacy, Science, Culture, Religion, or Military.

Unique Unit – Sabum Kibittum 

Most civilizations are easy prey for the barbarians, especially if you’re playing on Emperor or Deity difficulty. But trying to harvest Babylon’s Eureka-focused unique ability might leave you especially disadvantaged and vulnerable to early barb attacks. But the fast-moving and far-sighted Sabum Kibittum is here to keep your empire from crumbling to dust before it can even see the light of day. Although its melee strength is lower (17) than that of a regular Warrior (20), it has one more movement point and better sight than the latter. Plus, it is much more effective at defending against Heavy and Light Cavalry units than regular Ancient era warriors. Nothing too big or ground-breaking, but a useful addition nevertheless.

Melee Strength – 17

Movement Points – 3

Most effective against – Light and Heavy Cavalry

Unique Building – Palgum

The Water Mill is a building the players tend to ignore for its weak effects which are not worth the 80 production that goes into building it. However, being a pioneer of construction and development, the Babylonian Palgum works as its replacement, bettering it with additional Housing and Production. When your population is rising faster than your building projects, a Water Mill should come in handy for its extra effects. Building it will also unlock the Construction technology straightaway (kudos to special Babylonian Eurekas).

Effect – +2 production, +1 Housing; Freshwater tiles receive +1 food.

Production Cost – 80

Heroes and Legends – New Game Mode

In the third New Frontier Pass, we were treated to the Tech and Civic shuffle mode that brought a major update to kill the monotony of the Tech and Civic trees that we had come to remember like the back of our hands. In the fourth update, we have Heroes and Legends – great people from the past that could be recruited as units. They can be discovered by constructing a Monument and undertaking the Heroic Tales project. Other than that, they can be discovered through:

  • Tribal Villages (15% chance)
  • Sending envoys to City-States (10% chance)
  • Gaining Suzerainty of a City-State (100% chance)
  • Discovering a new continent or natural Wonder (50% chance)

Once discovered, a Devotion project has to be initiated to claim them. What makes them so alluring is that these Heroes are way stronger than the best unit of the era in which you recruit them and have additional powers that can assist in a variety of functions.

A Hero can be claimed by only one civilization, but a civilization can have multiple heroes. These precious units are going to be hunted by civilization from the get-go, looking to discover and claim as many of these mythical Heroes as early as possible. The full list of these Heroes and the Civilization that has claimed them is found on the ‘Great People’ page.

Unlike other units, they only last a few turns so it’s best to get the most out of them during their lifespan. There is glory even in their death, for they leave behind Heroic relics, an Epic, and a symbolic object that needs to be excavated. In times of dire need, they can be called forth by their civilization with Faith with their cost increasing significantly with every subsequent revival. They come back with era-appropriate combat strength and renewed lifespan and charges. Here they are:

Anasi

Unit Class: Ranged

Lifespan: 30

Movement: 3

Number of Charges: 6

Passive Ability: Ignore movement penalty in Woods and Rainforests

Active Ability: Consume Bonus/Luxury resource and generate Science and Culture

Anasi is a trickster in the folklore of the Akan people, seen in both human and spider form. His agility allows him to traverse through woods and rainforests without any movement penalties. As a ranged unit and a trickster, he can consume any Bonus or Luxury resource and also generates Science and Culture through them. The Science and Culture yields, like Anasi’s combat and range strengths, increase with the progression of eras. Do keep in mind that consuming resources that are within another Civilization will generate 15 grievances per use against them.

Using Anasi to remove a civilization’s resources can be effective in crippling their economy and their cities while boosting your own. Alternatively, Anasi can get the resources that are adjacent to your enemy’s borders and destroy them before they are subsumed within their territory.

Arthur

Unit Class: Heavy Cavalry

Lifespan: 30

Movement: 5

Number of Charges: 4

Passive Ability – None

Active Ability – Transform a land military unit into a Questing Knight

The story of King Arthur of Great Britain has been told and re-told throughout generations, rife with stone-sword pullings, tragedies, and songs of bravery. His is a legend of fearlessness and chivalry that has made Arthur west Europe’s most beloved king. In the New Frontier Pass, he is the Hero with the fewest abilities. But his one ability more than makes up for the lack in quantity. Arthur’s Accolade can turn one of your land military units into a Questing Knight – a special heavy cavalry unit buffed up additional Combat Strength and a Lifespan of 12.

Arthur is especially suited for times when you’re looking to get the better of your enemy by rushing their cities with Questing Knights. Four of these questing knights are a small and highly effective army unto themselves that can give you time enough to churn out additional units or win the battle on their own. Knighting a military unit only takes up one of Arthur’s movements that means you can knight a whole army in a turn and get them marching to the enemy’s territory.

Beowulf

Unit Class: Melle

Lifespan: 30

Movement: 3

Number of Charges: 6

Passive Ability: Ignore movement penalty in Hills terrain

Active Ability: Immediately destroy adjacent enemy if its combat strength is less than Beowulf’s

A proud warrior of yore, beastly in size and strength, and the protagonist of the oldest surviving works of English, Beowulf is a warrior and a brute, ripping enemies that are weaker than him limb from limb in one swift movement. His active ability is Beowulf’s challenge that targets an adjacent enemy with lower combat strength and destroys it immediately, taking up only a charge and a movement point.

Being the hulk in any era, Beowulf can systematically eliminate the best units of an army (as long as they’re weaker than him) so that the enemy’s attack is thwarted before it even begins, especially when fighting in hilly areas.

Hercules

Unit Class: Melee

Lifespan: 30

Movement: 3

Number of Charges: 6

Passive Ability: Ignore movement penalty in Hills terrain.

Active Ability (1): Complete District construction when on a friendly district under construction.

Active Ability (2): Destroy building and pillage districts when on an enemy district.

The son of Zeus appears in the New Frontier Pass as both a creator and a destroyer – as all Gods tend to be. Though his movement speed cannot keep pace with his combat strength, the highest among all Heroes, his active abilities (known as Hercules’ Labor and Hercules’ Rage) will end up being the biggest exploits. He will prove especially useful in late-game when constructing production-intensive districts and buildings tend to take up an inordinate number of turns. With him, the instant building of districts takes up only a charge which means in a single era, you can focus on six of your best districts to get a huge lead. Definitely amongst the top heroes to get, if not the best.

Himiko

Unit Class: Civilian

Lifespan: 40

Movement: 4

Number of Charges: 8

Passive Ability (1): +10 combat strength to units within 2 tiles

Passive Ability (2): Ignore movement penalty on all terrain

Active Ability (1): Place 1 Envoy in an adjacent city-state. With suzerainty, earn Faith as well.

Active Ability (2): When a Suzerain of a city-state, levy military units for free.

Queen Himiko is a legend in China and Japan and was quite probably a real person too. Known for her charm, her diplomacy, and a little bit of shamanism, she acts more like a general that provides combat strength to units around her. When focusing on city-states, Himiko can earn suzerainty fairly quickly as well as an early Pantheon and Religion with additional Faith. And when things go awry with a bullish neighbor, levy the city-state’s military for no Gold cost and save your empire. Both of her active abilities take up a only single charge.

Hippolyta

Unit Class: Anti-cavalry

Lifespan: 30

Movement: 3

Number of Charges: NA

Passive Ability (1): Ignore movement penalty in Hills terrain

Passive Ability (2): Heals 20 HP per turn automatically.

Active Ability: Restore friendly adjacent military unit’s movements and attacks (Once per turn).

Queen of the all-female Amazonian tribe, Hippolyta is a combat legend delighting in being at the forefront of every battle, big or small, and supporting other troops with her abilities. She is the only hero whose active ability doesn’t require a charge. Those engaging in wide-scale warfare would find Hippolyta an indispensable Hero unit with her automatic heal ability as well as her active ability to restore adjacent units’ combat and movement points. She too thrives in battles on hilly terrain and can turn the difficulties of mountainous combat in your favor.

Hunahpu & Xbalanque

Unit Class: Melee

Lifespan: 30

Movement: 3

Number of Charges: NA

Passive Ability (1): Ignore movement penalty in Hills terrain.

Passive Ability (2): Units killed by Hunahpu & Xbalanque resurrect under your control

Active Ability: NA

The Mayan tells stories of the Hero Twins Hunahpu & Xbalanque who mastered the art of resurrection and defeated the Gods of the underworld at their own game. As a Hero unit, their dark magical powers of bringing the dead back can bring your enemy’s deadliest unit under your command, as long as this Hero(es) defeats them. Doing so shouldn’t be a troublesome endeavor as Hunahpu & Xbalanque is amongst the most powerful Hero unit. Even if you throttle your enemies with other units, make sure the Hero twins deal the final blow.

Maui

Unit Class: Melee

Lifespan: 30

Movement: 3

Number of Charges: 4

Passive Ability: Ignore movement penalty in Woods and Rainforests.

Active Ability: Creates a random Bonus/Luxury resource on an unowned, empty plot.

A Polynesian demigod and champion of the Maori, Maui is an ancient hero renowned for his extraordinary feats and gifts to humanity. Though at first glance he may appear a hero without much purchase, his talents are unique and may possibly save your empire from loss of amenities and rebellion. For leaders that are focused more on building rather than conquering, the environment-conscious Maui is a perfect fit that can bring the riches of the world to your empire. Maui is definitely an early-game hero that can boost your empire’s yields and snowball them early enough to give you tactical and resource advantages for trade, unit constructions, amenities, and powering up your cities.

Mulan

Unit Class: Ranged Cavalry

Lifespan: 30

Movement: 4

Number of Charges: NA

Passive Ability (1): Gain 1 combat strength every turn.

Passive Ability (2): Fortifies fully after every turn.

A Chinese hero of yesteryears whose devotion and loyalty have inspired ballads and stories for centuries. As a ranged unit without any active ability, she may seem too tame in the beginning. But keep an eye on her combat strength increasing with every passing turn as it makes her a deadly veteran virtually undefeatable as she ages. The best strategy, if you come across an enemy that is stronger than Mulan, is to have her attack from a range for the first few turns and let her loose in the latter half of her lifespan.

Oya

Unit Class: Melee

Lifespan: 30

Movement: 3

Number of Charges: 6

Passive Ability: Ignores Movement penalty on all terrain.

Active Ability: Damage all adjacent enemies and heal all friendly adjacent units by 40.

Harbinger of storm and lightning, Oya is an African legend renowned for her extreme natural power. As swift as the wind, she moves, ignoring all terrain penalties, and brings death and destruction upon your foes and a healing balm of grace to your wounded units. In the unfortunate event of a surprise war, Oya can stall enemy attacks while keeping your units from certain death. Turn the tables and her roles change, assisting in defeating a civilization that is eras ahead of you, eliminating enemy troops, and letting your own brute force their way through walls and encampments to flip enemy cities and expand your empire.

Sinbad

Unit Class: Naval Melee Unit

Lifespan: 30

Movement: 7

Number of Charges: 8

Passive Ability (1): Enter Ocean tiles

Passive Ability (2): Earn 500 Gold when Sinbad discovers a new Continent or a Natural Wonder.

Active Ability: Damage adjacent enemy unit by 50% or clear adjacent Barbarian camp immediately and earn Gold.

An Arabian hero famed for his adventures and marvelous travels, Sinbad is an explorer and a treasure hunter. As the only naval hero, his abilities depend on expansive oceanic maps. He can enter Ocean tiles from the first turn to explore far-off lands, defeating barbarians and enemy naval units, and bringing the riches to your empire. Gold from his passive abilities doesn’t scale. But with his active ability, you get 100 additional Gold per era, starting at 300. Getting Sinbad early and leveraging his movement points is going to be key to amassing a huge fortune.

Sun Wukong

Unit Class: Melee Unit

Lifespan: 50

Movement: 6

Number of Charges: NA

Passive Ability (1): Ignore Movement penalty on all terrain.

Passive Ability (2): Hidden unless adjacent to an enemy unit.

Passive Ability (3): Increased Lifespan

A grim-looking immortal of Chinese descent, this Monkey King is renowned for his cunning and speed. He may not be the strongest Hero of all, but as a master of disguise, he can appear out of nowhere, deal blows, and disappear in a blink. His increased lifespan also means that you can keep him around for at least a couple of eras and pester the living gulls out of your enemy’s units. Sun Wukong can steal enemy civilian units – like settlers and builders – and cripple any civilization’s attempts to settle, build and expand.

More New Content…

Apart from the Babylonian Civilization and a slew of Heroes and Legends, there are also two dozen new great people to embellish your Civilization, build wonders, boost techs, and a whole lot more. Three of the notable ones that are revealed by Firaxis include the writer Rumi, the scientist Margaret Mead, and the engineer Imhotep. The rest is up to you to find out for yourself (for we ourselves haven’t found them yet).

There are 6 new city-states as well, one of each type – Trade, Culture, Militaristic, Scientific, Industrial, and Religious. Two of them, Nalanda and Samarkand, will allow you to build one new improvement each when you gain their suzerainty. The Nalanda city-state unlocks the Mahavihara. When constructed for the first time, it unlocks a random technology and provides additional Housing and Science. The Samarkand city-stat unlocks the Trading Dome that provides extra Gold.

New Frontier Pass 5 and 6 Release Date

With two more New Frontier Passes to go, CivFanatics are all waiting to find out what new Civs, game modes, and new features the developers have in store for us. So far, no new announcements have been made. All we know is that New Frontier Pass 5 is set to release in January, and Pass 6 in March. As soon as the release announcements are made, the same will be updated here as well, so do keep your eyes peeled for that. Until then, keep up with One More Turn.

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