Introduced in the Gathering Storm expansion of Civilization 6,a Diplomatic Victory is not an easy thing to pull off and requires a lot of planning and strategic use of Diplomatic Favor to sway World Congress votes in the player's favor. Lots of factors go into generating Diplomatic Favor and keeping it throughout the game, making a Diplomatic Victory one of the most complex win conditions inCivilization 6. However, there are a few leaders in the game that can really give the player an edge when it comes to being the most diplomatic Civilization in the world.
In this ongoingCivilization 6leader series, we're covering the best leaders for each Victory Condition. In the previous installment, we covered the best leaders for a Domination Victory,who for the most part would be the worst leaders to pick when going for the Diplomatic Victory, as going to war and occupying enemy cities will have a drastic impact on the player's chance to earn the coveted Diplomatic Victory.
Kristina of Sweden
Few leaders are more tailored to a specific victory condition like Kristina is for the Diplomatic Victory. Sweden dominates the game in the Diplomatic Favor department, perhaps only being truly challenged by Wilfrid Laurier of Canada in the long-run. Kristina is hands-down one of the best leaders to help secure a Diplomatic Victory due to Sweden's Civilization Ability.
Before that, however, it's best to understand Kristina's Leader Ability: Minerva of the North. Minerva of the North is a Culture-focused ability which automatically themes any building with at least three filled Great Work slots, or any Wonder with at least two full Great Works slots. Getting a building to be Themed is a tedious process that usually requires a ton of work, and is one of the biggest challenges when pursuing a Culture Victory. While this is not going to be a large boon when chasing the Diplomatic Victory, it will make anyone trying to get a Culture Victory in the game have a really bad time.
The real fun starts when looking at Sweden's Civilization Ability: Nobel Prize. Sweden gains +50 Diplomatic Favor every time they recruit a Great Person. Additionally, Sweden gains +1 Great Engineer Points from Factories and +1 Great Scientist Points from Universities. While Sweden is in the game, three unique World Congress Competitions are added to the game in the Industrial Era. Essentially, Sweden excels at earning Great People and is rewarded heavily for doing so. The bonus World Congress competitions predominantly revolve around generating Great People points, so Sweden has an advantage with a chance to earn even more Diplomatic Favor. If other players do not cut Sweden off at the pass, Kristina will snowball into a Diplomatic Victory without issue.
Matthias Corvinus of Hungary
At first glance, Matthias may seem like a peculiar choice as his kit incentivizes a City-State focused Domination Victory. However, Matthias is also a surprise contender for a Diplomatic Victory if he chooses not to go to war. The strength of Matthias comes from his leader ability and not Hungary's Civilization Ability, which is Pearl of the Danube. This grants Matthias +50% bonus Production for Districts and Buildings across a river from the City Center. This ability is niche at best, but rewards players who plan out a great starting position. The bonus production will help Matthias get going quicker than most other Civs, though it isn't a game-changer.
What makes Matthias so powerful is thathis Leader Ability gives hima strong City-State focus and he only gets more powerful as he becomes the Suzerain of more City-States.The abilityis called Raven King, and grants +2 Movement and +5 Combat Strength to Levied City-State units. Additionally, those units can be upgraded at a 75% Gold discount. That's not the kicker though. Whenever Matthias levies a City-State's military, he gains 2 Envoys with that City-State. Effectively, once Matthias secures a City-State and is Suzerain, it is near-impossible to overthrow his Suzerainship. This is effective in a Diplomatic game because players gain Diplomatic Favor per turn based on how many City-States they are the Suzerain of.
This bonus is only further exacerbated if Matthias is able to build the Orszaghaz Wonder, which gives the builder +100% Diplomatic Favor per turn from starting the turn as a Suzerain. As Matthias becomes the Suzerain of more and more City-States, he begins hurdling toward a Diplomatic Victory based on sheer Diplomatic Favor per turn granted by those City-States.
Tamar of Georgia
Tamar of Georgia is another pick for Diplomatic Victory that may come as a surprise to someCivilization 6players. Tamar is a defensive Leader with a secondary focus on Religion. Georgia's Civilization Ability does little to further Tamar's pursuit of a Diplomatic Victory (though it is still a nice ability). The ability is called Strength in Unity.Whenever Georgia achieves a Golden or Heroic Age, Georgia also gets the Normal Age Dedication as well, so it is even easier for Georgia to get to the next Golden Age. Additionally, Georgia gets an addition 50% bonus to the Production of Walls, perfect for making sure cities are not taken. These abilities are quite nice, and really help Georgia play defensively while also reaping major rewards in a Golden/Heroic Age, but Tamar's Leader Ability is what makes her great in the Diplomacy Game.
Tamar's Leader Ability is Glory to the World, Kingdom and Faith. Whenever Tamar declares a Protectorate War, she generates +100% Faith for 10 Turns, not super exciting admittedly. But there's a second part to this ability. Whenever Tamar sends an Envoy to a City-State that has Tamar's Religion as the majority, it counts as two envoys. When Tamar gets her religion in place across several City-States, she can quickly overthrow any Suzerain that is currently in place there and make it her own. She is perhaps one of the only Leaders who could potentially dethrone Matthias from a City-State, and that alone is worth keeping Tamar on the radar for Diplomatic Victory.
Teddy Roosevelt (Rough Rider)
When the Etheopia Pack was released as part of the New Frontier Pass, two "persona packs" were released, which added alternate versions to two existing leaders. Teddy Roosevelt was one of those leaders. Teddy now has two forms: Bull Moose and Rough Rider. When focusing on a Diplomatic Victory, Rough Rider Teddy is the way to go. Rough Rider Teddy still has the America Civilization Bonus of Founding Fathers. Founding Fathers converts all Diplomatic Policy Slots into Wildcard Policy Slots, perfect for those trying to use the best Government Policies. Additionally, America gains +1 Diplomatic Favor per turn for every Wildcard slot in the current Government. Teddy is already off to a great start thanks to this ability.
However, what separates Rough Rider Teddy from Bull Moose Teddy is his Leader Ability. Rough Rider Teddy's ability is Roosevelt Corollary. Roosevelt Corollary grants Teddy's units +5 Combat Strength when fighting on America's home continent. Additionally, when Teddy sends an Envoy to a City-State that he has an ongoing Trade Route with, it counts as two Envoys. This ability is similar in structure to Tamar's,yet it is far easier to pull off as there is little chance of a player not gaining Trade Routes. While this ability does not make Rough Rider Teddy one of the most overpowered Leaders in Civ 6, it certainly goes a long way toward helping Teddy secure a nice Diplomatic Victory.
Wilfrid Laurier of Canada
Rounding outthis list is Wilfrid Laurier of Canada. Wilfrid Laurier, much like Kristina, has a heavy Diplomacy focus with a secondary focus on Culture. These two Leaders are some of the only ones who have specific bonuses toward a Diplomatic Victory, where the others have bonuses that can possibly come in handy for this victory type. To start, Wilfrid Laurier's Leader Ability is The Last Best West. This ability allows Wilfrid to construct Farms on Tundra Tiles, Tundra Tiles are 50% cheaper to purchase, and resources accumulate twice as fast on those tiles. However, this ability isn't great. It can be handy late-game when settling cities looking for Oil and Uranium, but just becauseplayerscansettleon these tiles does not mean players should. Grassland farms are better in every conceivable way.
Wilfrid enters the Diplomacy game with Canada's Civilization Ability: Four Faces of Peace. Other Civilizations cannot declare a Surprise War on Canada (a HUGE boon asplayer will be able to see when a war is coming before it gets to their doorstep). In addition to this, for every 100 Tourism Canada has, they gain 1 Diplomatic Favor. They also get +100% Diplomatic Favor from Emergency Requests and World Congress Score Competitions. The Favor payouts for these events is already massive, so if Canada wins one of these they can skyrocket in Diplomatic Favor. If played right, Canada can get two Victory Conditions in range easily: Diplomacy and Culture. If for some reason a Cultural Victory is eluding Canada, their massive Diplomatic Favor boons will surely help them secure a win regardless.
Each leader on this list will serve a player nicely when pursuing the ever-elusive Diplomatic Victory. It is one of the more challenging Victory Conditions due to how the World Congress operates in the end-game. However, using leaders like Kristina and Wilfrid will make that process a heck of a lot easier. Just make sure to stockpile Diplomatic Favor and save it whenever possible.
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