The final installment of Civilization 6‘s New Frontier Pass is nearly here, and we’ve finally got some details on which leader will be the (potentially) last leader joining the Civilization 6 roster. In the upcoming DLC, players will get the chance to play as João III, who will lead Portugal. This leader will focus on Naval Units and Commerce, a unique combination in Civilization 6 for sure. In addition to the new leader, players will also be able to quire off against hordes of the undead in the new Zombie Defense game mode, which launches alongside the Portugal Pack. Here’s everything you need to know about the upcoming Portugal DLC for Civilization 6.
João III leads Portugal in Civilization 6‘s upcoming Portugal DLC pack, the final installment of the New Frontier Pass. Also referred to as John III or John the Pios, João III leads Portugal with a heavy focus on naval units and trading, with the potential to amass money to even compete with Mansa Musa, Civilization 6‘s richest leader. João III’s unique leader ability is Porta Do Cerco. This grants all units +1 sight range, and +1 trade route capacity when João III meets another Civilization for the first time.
João III also gets Open Borders with all city-states, a feature that is usually restricted to a late-game Policy Card. While the trade route capacity ability is very dependent on the number of players in the game, even in a small game, bonus trade routes are never a bad thing. Open Borders with city-states is not game-changing, but it’s certainly a nice quality-of-life perk that should not be discredited. Additionally, the fact that all of João III’s units gain +1 sight can be very helpful for early-game scouting, as well as an all-around good tactical benefit to see approaching threats or potential boons in the world.
Portugal’s ability, unique unit, and unique infrastructures all revolve around trading, making João III the perfect leader for this naval and commerce-heavy Civilization. Portugal’s Civilization Ability is Casa De India, and has several effects.
Portugal’s international trade routes can only go to civilizations or city-states that are either on the coast or have a harbor, but they gain +50 percent to their yields. Trader units have +50 percent range over water, and can immediately embark as soon as they are unlocked. While the restriction to the trade route destinations can be a bit troublesome on more land-heavy map seeds, each trade route can generate more yields, making the trade-off worth it. Clearly this will be a lot more valuable on water-heavy maps. Players should avoid conquering City-States as João III, as international trade routes are the way to go as him.
The Portuguese unique unit is the Nau, a replacement for the Caravel and is one of the most interesting unique units in Civilization 6. The Nau is cheaper to maintain, comes with a free promotion, and has two charges allowing it to build the Feitoria unique improvement. Feitorias are an interesting improvement, having strict building requirements: They can only be placed on coastal or lake tiles adjacent to a luxury or bonus resource on tiles owned by another Civilization or city-state that you have open borders with. Feitoria provides +4 gold and +1 production for that city, and Portugal gains +4 gold and +1 production when Portugal sends that city a trade route.
In addition to the Feitoria improvement, Portugal also has the Navigation School building, which replaces the university. This building shares several features with the university, but in addition to the flat +4 Science, it provides +1 Science for every two coast or lake tiles in the city. Careful city planning could mean that this improvement can surpass the university by a large margin, as Portugal wants to be settled predominantly on coast anyways. In addition to the scaling Science, the Navigation School also provides +25 percent production towards naval units in that city, as well as +1 Great Admiral points per turn.
Victory for Portugal can come in a number of ways. Much like Mansa Musa, gold can buy a lot of things, allowing for multiple victory paths. If established well, and potentially with the Venetian Arsenal, few Civilizations could withstand the massive navy that Portugal can amass, making domination a solid choice.
The Navigation School’s science bonus is nice, and with a large enough empire can be quite a boon, so a science victory isn’t out of the question. A large flow of gold can also be used to buy diplomatic favor off other players, allowing for a diplomatic victory as well. João III gains no specific bonuses toward culture and religious victory, but again, money can generally be a good gateway to any Victory.
Zombies are also making their way to Civilization 6 alongside the Portugal Pack in the brand new Zombie Defense game mode. In this game mode, defeated units have a chance of respawning as Zombies, and will seek out any non-Zombie unit to kill. If defeated by a Zombie, that unit will, in turn, respawn as a Zombie. This will add an entire new type of threat that players will need to manage throughout their game.
As the game progresses, players will unlock special improvements to help stave off the Zombie hordes, and even learn ways to temporarily control the Zombies. A later spy mission can even cause Zombies to appear in enemy cities. This game mode will be all about managing multiple threats at a time, and potentially trying to use them to your advantage.
Civilization 6‘s new Portugal DLC is the final installment of the New Frontier Pass, and is slated to launch March 25th. Whether more DLC and updates will come out after it remain to be seen, but many fans loved the New Frontier Pass and the content it added, so it wouldn’t come as too much of a surprise if more DLC for Civilization 6 was announced – whether it be a full DLC like Gathering Storm or even another round of Leader DLCs like the New Frontier Pass.
Civilization 6 is available now for Linux, Mobile, Nintendo Switch, PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.