Civilization VI is a very good video game, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t room for improvement.
Since the game’s launch in October 2016, fans have been working on mods that do everything from make the game look better to improving the creaky AI to speeding up your trips through the user interface.
Below you’ll find our recommendations for the best of them. At worst they will improve how the game looks, and at best they will improve your entire Civ VI experience. Links to download them are in each entry’s header, and all links lead to the relevant Steam Workshop page.
Note that since these are all fan-made mods you may find some clash with others and are a bit buggy, but hey, that’s par for the course. Enjoy!
A Civ V classic, R.E.D. returns to Civ VI doing much the same job: making the game’s military units smaller and more numerous (so where an Artillery unit would be a single gun in vanilla Civ VI, it’s now a batter of three), which to some makes them look more “real” and for others simply means they’re less intrusive on the map.
The trade-off is that you lose the cuteness of the fat, solitary lil’ battleship, but it’s worth it in the long run.
My favourite mod, and the one which will have the most lasting impact on the way you play Civ VI. CQUI makes massive changes to the game’s menu system, providing a lot more detail at first glance (rather than burying things beneath sub-menus) and introducing features like build queues and a colour-coded overlay to help plan your builder actions.
Maybe not as immediately (or as universally) useful as the two mods above, but this is still one of the best currently available, because it adds a bunch of detailed real world maps to the game, along with the ability to customise where Civs start on them. So if you want to create an authentic battle for Europe, or even (if your system can take the strain) the entire planet, this mod is a good place to start.
Adds about the only thing CQUI didn’t get around to. Most big strategy games these days — the Endless games especially — let you save time by right-clicking out of menu screens. Civ VI doesn’t, so instead of making the player click through a few dialogue options and then track across to a close button (or hitting the escape key), this lets you simply right-click anywhere to get back to the action.
Unless you’re playing as Australia, settling too many cities too close to the water can set you back in Civ VI, because most water tiles simply aren’t as productive as those on land (especially when compared with older Civ games). This mod attempts to set that right for the aquatically inclined by adding a bunch of perks and extra resources to sea tiles, though some might find the housing and production perks for seaside districts a bit too helpful.
This one’s tricky. Some of the vanilla game’s AI is terrible, particularly when it comes to military invasions and diplomatic penalties, and this mod tries to address some of those shortcomings. It ends up breaking as many things as it tries to improve, though, so don’t think of it as a mod that fixes the AI. Think of it as a mod that presents a different take on it, which you may or may not prefer over the original.
The base game ships with a few actual, historical religions, then lets the player craft their own if they don’t want to choose one. THR adds a ton more, including more branches of Christianity (Anglicans, Mormons), some Hellenistic faiths, individual entries for Sunni and Shia, Voodoo, Taoism, Druids and Zoroastrianism.
BCI is only a minor cosmetic change, but it’s one history buffs (and fans of older Civ games) will appreciate, as it removes some of the more bizarre Civ and city state icons (like a bull for Spain) and replaces them with something a bit more appropriate.
It’s annoying starting Civ VI with only a warrior to explore your vast surrounds, when previous games would give most factions a scout. This mod fixes that by automatically giving everyone — AI included — a free scout. Go forth.