My Top 10 Comic Couples

Inspired by the fantastic relationship that is being portrayed by Big Barda and Scott Free in Tom King and Mitch Gerads amazing Miracle Man run is my favorite comic couples. Also, another plug, if you like comics, you should be reading it. There are several favorite couples in comic books books. Everyone has a different one. To be clear, these are couples that are either hinted at, have happened, or interest presented in comic book form. These aren’t ships as much as they are the couples I love to see most. One of them will venture into ship territory, but I feel justified in the choice (stay tuned for that). Additionally a few characters will show up in multiple different relationships. I hope this will make sense for you all once you actually see them.

COUPLE 10

10. Hank Pym and Janet Van Dyne

There is a lot to unpack with this relationship. Hank is famous for slapping his wife, and there were a ton more images of abuse on the web than their were of them being a happy couple. I am not here to defend abusers, or suggest that the couple was wrong in splitting up. Quite the contrary, I love this couple because they split up. Both are founding members of the Avengers and their relationship was a shining point in the initial Avengers run. You had this sweet super couple between two people with the technology to shrink. This later expanded as Pym graduated to Giant Man (he changes identities a lot). Yet overtime, Hank became more and more obsessed with his work. Eventually Pym inhales chemicals that give him schizophrenia. The pair marry in the 70’s. After being suspended of duty by Cap, Hank eventually strikes Jan in a fit of rage. This leads to the couple divorcing and Hank being expelled from the Avengers. And here lies Hank’s greatest failure. His marriage. It was not the creation of Ultron, it was the dissolution of his marriage. Janet represents Hank’s bearing. Without her, he quite frankly is nothing. She is his lightning rod, and only after she left, could Hank realize that. Janet made the right choice. Yet Hank isn’t a monster that many people generally consider him to be, he’s a brilliant man who doesn’t have anything. Reed as family and Stark has wealth. Pym, arguably a greater mind than both of them has nothing. He could save the world, but without Jan at his side he is nothing more than a broken man. In case 300 words didn’t make it apparent. I love Hank Pym. Top 3 favorite Marvel characters.

COUPLE 9

9. Dick Grayson and Barbara Gordon

There are two dominant loves in Dick Grayson’s life. Babs and Koriand’r (referred to as Starfire from here on out). While I like the Teen Titans, and I grew up and loved the animated show, The first couple is still my preferred relationship for Grayson. The orphaned ward of Bruce Wayne and the brilliant daughter of GCPD Chief Jim Gordon. Both donned a mask early on in their lives, and were forever thrust into Batman’s endless war on crime. Yet while Bruce sought solace in beating more criminals, the pair eventually found companionship with themselves. This only grew after the events of the Killing Joke. As Barbara embraced her new roll as Oracle, and kept constant vigil over the Knights of Gotham. This couple, as well as Bab’s paralysis have been undone since the beginning of the New 52. Replacing the love with melancholy and a bit of animosity. Fortunately Gail Simone gave us the wedding we all deserved in her Convergance book. So at least we have that.

Couple 8

8. Oliver Queen and Dinah Lance

Why wouldn’t this show up on a top 10 couple list? This arguably should be further on the list, but it didn’t quite cut it with the competition. What else is there to say? Ollie and Dinah are perfect for each other, and despite barely interacting in the New 52. Ben Percy and Otto Schmidt rekindled their spark in Rebirth. One of the headlining plots in their run on Green Arrow is the deep love that the characters have for each other, and how that love was as intense on day one. They love each other, despite often not finding reasons to love themselves. They help each other get past their own issues and make them that much stronger together. They have had their fair shares of ups and downs. Yet through it all, they always come back together.

Couple 7

7. Tim Drake and Stephanie Brown

One of the 90’s greatest power couples. Most kids growing up in the 90’s immediately found a connection with Tim Drake’s Robin. I was no exception. His budding romance with the Spoiler, captured my young heart. The couple stuck together through some of the worst moments in Gotham, like No Mans Land. Eventually Tim supported Steph through her pregnancy (Tim was not the father), and helped her come to the decision to put the baby up for adoption. The couple drifted apart, largely due to Steph faking her death in War Games. Yet the spark always remains. Steph was absent most of the New 52 (as was Tim’s personality). Yet recent events in James Tynion’s Detective Comics have revitalized that romantic spark. While the couple is currently on the rocks, they clearly care about each other.

Couple 6

6. Bruce Wayne and Diana Prince

This is a shout out to the threads plotted in Justice League and Justice League Unlimited. Both series’ showed off mutual attraction for one another. A smart move since Clark has Lois (I hate Clark and Diana, spoiler, that couple isn’t on the list). It not only helped serve as some character growth for the both of them, but also made for some humorous situations. Diana’s naivety paired well with Bruce’s surly attitude. The episode, ‘This Little Piggy’ should leave no one without at least a small support for this relationship, as Bruce turns Gotham upside down looking for Diana (she was transformed into a pig). Despite being utter filler, it is incredibly sweet and solidified this couple in my head from a young age.

Couple 5

5. Bruce and Selina

Yes, the first duplicate character showing up. How do you not love this duo? Especially with Tom King’s run on the characters, and their impending marriage. They have shared a dangerous attraction with each other for several decades now. One of the best stories showcasing their relationship was Hush, which is a masterpiece in its own right. Selina has always tread the line between good and bad, but always trends towards good when paired with Bruce. Tom King plays their relationship as a mutual partnership. They need each other to keep going. They love each other, while recognizing that they are equally hard to love. The couple always drifts away from each other. Sometimes it is due to Selina and sometimes it is because Bruce. While I am sure the couple won’t stay married for long, I will love every single second that they are together.

Couple 4 best couple

4. Ted Kord and Barbara Gordon

This is a personal favorite of mine. Ted is my absolute favorite hero and my comic book idol. Barbara Gordon is the greatest Batgirl and one of my all time favorite heroes. They had an unlikely flirtation throughout the original Birds of Prey run. Both figuring out each others secret identities because they are smarty pants. When they became close, the couple naturally broke it off. Babs has always had Nightwing, listed above. They have a great deal in common, and would have made a very cute couple. For Ted, it remained unrequited. Barbara stuck around as his friend long after the rest of the hero community wrote him off as a joke. The last time we see this couple mentioned, is in the panel above. From Countdown to Infinite Crisis #1. If you haven’t read it, make sure you do. It’ll make you fall in love with Ted and break your heart.

Couple 3

3. Archie Andrews and Veronica Lodge

Yes, this is my preferred ship for Riverdale’s lovable goof ball. Sure Betty is generally considered to be the better pair, but I don’t like him with the girl next door type. Having him step out of his shell and explore the often hilarious life of the fabulously wealthy. This always puts him in the cross hairs of Hiram Lodge, which make the Archie experience all the more enjoyable. Mark Waid’s seminal run on the title has only fleshed out Veronica more. Changing her from haughty heiress to down to Earth girl. Sure she is still very rich. Yet she is a much more relate-able character. One that I fell for, when I never had thought of Veronica in that way before. In the arc that introduces Cheryl Blossom we see Veronica show off all the good she learned from Archie and the gang. Call it perfect writing and great characterization. This book is one of my all time favorite books, and this is one of the reasons why. I have seen the first season of Riverdale, and somehow I got through it. I don’t intend on watching it again. This opinion is 100% formed by the comic books.

Couple 2

2. Jean Grey and Scott Summers

I am a 90’s kid. Thus X-Men is deeply ingrained in my being. From the abundance of comic books (and so many shoulder pads). To the animated series, and the excellent theme song that accompanied it. What struck with me most of all of them was Scott and Jean. I always loved Cyclops. Still do. He is hands down my favorite Marvel character. I also have always have, and always will hate Wolverine. So this works not only to make a point for my favorite couple, but helps me debunk Jean and Wolverine. I will not spend this article defending Scott. He is a bit of a scoundrel, and I agree with none of it. But when I picture Jean or Scott, I always picture them together. That is how I choose to see them, and if Scott doesn’t have Jean in his life, Scott is always lesser to me. Also the fact that Scott exists as a hollow shell without Jean in so many different mediums, just shows his dedication to her. Why does Scott have to suffer so much? Can’t we just let him have something?

Couple 1

1. Lois and Clark

Duh? Do I really need to explain this? They are the poster child for greatest comic book couple. The addition of Jonathan has only changed their dynamic for the better. Long live the Super-Family!

Advertisements

DC Putting Their Eggs into One Bendis

AC1000

We are less than a month away from Action Comics 1000, and thus Brian Michael Bendis’ first book at DC. For those unaware, the long time Marvel ‘visionary’ turned heads in the industry when he signed an exclusive with DC last year. As apart of this deal, Bendis will get full creative control over the Superman line. All existing Super-Titles are ending, including books like Super Sons and Supergirl that are not being directly touched by Bendis. Superman will relaunch with #1, and Action will continue on with #1001. Additionally Bendis will get readers primed with a 6 part mini series “The Man of Steel” that will re-imagine his version of Superman. I have never been a fan of Bendis, but I never thought I’d have to endure him writing some of my favorite characters. I was fine just letting him kill whatever Marvel property he got a hold of (like the X-Men line, which got progressively worse under his heel).

Now I have to face the facts, it’s a Bendis world and I have to live in it. I am not happy about it. Dan Jurgens has had a mostly sensational run on Action Comics. Bringing back iconic characters like Doomsday (whom he co created). Jurgens juggled well the different aspects of the Superman world. His treatment of Lois, Lex, Jon, and the Daily Planet staff was very well done. When this book was working, it was using a nice mix of heart with fantastic action sequences. The first arc, and then the third arc were fantastic and highlight the very best the book has to offer. Dan Jurgens added more stories and pushed himself up on the list of all time great Superman writers with this book. He also deftly guided the title to the 1000th issue, which should be applauded.

On the other side of this is Superman. Peter Tomasi became my hero doing his Last Days of Superman story in the New 52. He ended the New 52 Superman with a bang, with a story that is reminiscent of Grant Morrison’s masterpiece All Star Superman. He continued this deft treatment of the character throughout his entire run of Superman with Rebirth. I highlighted a story arc on my best of 17 list. That is an understatement of his run on Superman. Counting his excellent transition from New 52 to Rebirth, his run on Superman has been one of the best runs the character has ever seen. Focusing more on the relationship between Clark and Jonathan (and Lois as well). Character building and interpersonal relationships are where this book succeeded. While Jurgens succeded with well done bombastic fight sequences, Tomasi succeeded with words. The heart of the character really shone through. Which, for Superman, might be the most important thing. It is for me at least.

Now we lose all of that, for a creator who is, at best, the most average man in comic books. I used to joke about Bendis and Brett Boothe collaborating on a comic book, and how it would be the most average comic ever created. People across the world would say “yep, that’s what a comic looks like”. Saddly that joke is no longer as funny now. I know several people who are excited about this book, but I am not one of them. Mostly in part to my introduction to Bendis. It was with Ultimate Spider-Man #1. I was excited to see Miles Morales, and actually bought the book (rare for me, still to this day). While I enjoyed it, I could not get past the 4 page spread in the back by Bendis that ultimately just talked about how visionary Bendis is. This self gratuitous act only struck me as arrogant and stuck up. He didn’t change my mind when he decided to add ‘Jessica Jones Created by BMB’ on every Jessica Jones book of the new run (and in Deffenders). Something I don’t think you need to do when you are writing the book! Bottom line, he as always screamed arrogance. I am afraid that will bleed into the character of Superman. Who should not be portrayed as such. I am also concerned about the family dynamic. We have had a nice few years with Lois and Clark back as a couple, and I really don’t want his “sweeping line wide changes” to change that or to impact Jonathan Kent in any big way. The fact that Super Sons is ending, is not indicating otherwise.

Ultimately time will tell where Bendis’ tenure in Metropolis lands, but I am not excited about it. I am planning on getting several of the variants for Action 1000 both the Allred and Bermejo covers look awesome. But I will miss the Supergirl title, especially the awesome Lau covers we have gotten the last half a year. What do you feel about Bendis on Superman?

What’s Next for Marvel?

It was announced earlier this week that Marvel would be doing a line wide relaunch starting in May. While Legacy just launched late Fall, the poor reviews and even poorer sales have driven Marvel to freshen things up. While little is known about it currently, I will discuss what we do know and what I hope comes out of the event. So first off things will start with Avengers #1/691. Marvel has bounced around between legacy numbering and new numbering, so now we have the best of both worlds. I am a fan of the idea. It will clearly mark what issue it is in the current series, while still pointing out the overall legacy of the title itself.

All Star Writer Jason Aaron will team up with Ed Mcguinness to bring the flagship Avengers book. The book will split time between the current Avengers roster (Captain America (Steve), Iron Man (Tony), Odinson, Ghost Rider (Robbie Reyes), Black Panther, Captain Marvel, She Hulk, and Doctor Strange (in what is called a rotating spot). There are things to like and dislike about this team. First off, getting Marvel’s big three back together ahead of Infinity War. The downside is that they feel the need to incorporate the newest Ghost Rider. I guess they want to draw as many parallels between the current roster and Avengers BC which they will be splitting time covering. For anyone who missed it, Avengers BC is the first team up. With the Phoenix Entity, Odin, a brute with the Starbrand (which is telling, as it looks like the current Hulk will be getting it), an early Black Panther, and an early Ghost Rider. While I am all for getting the original gang back together, I am concerned about the recent efforts to include newer characters. The likes of Ironheart, appear to be missing, which is unfortunate. Only time will tell who all the core characters are and where the others may be going.

One thing I do like about the new initiative is that this will be the only Avengers book. Gone are the days of Avengers, Mighty, New, Secret, All New, etc. I believe it will help stream line the audience into one book and drive excellent demand for it, rather than split it up among a half a dozen teams. This should also help with event fatigue. As there will, hopefully, be less of a desire to do multi series crossovers. Something that has become a nuisance for modern comic readers. I am curious to see if this will impact the current X-mean line. As they currently have Weapon X, Blue, Gold, and Red. I expect not, as multiple X titles have been a staple since the 90’s.

This now brings us to upcoming projects. It had previously been announced that Dan Slott would take over the Iron Man title, and it would be expected that Aaron may step back from his long Thor run. I am expecting that these will be apart of it. That was part of what made Marvel Now so exciting back in 2012. It featured long time creators going to different books. Bendis went from Avengers to X-Men, Aaron to Thor, etc. I am curious to see what all they have planned. Though contrary to this Ta-Neihisi Coates will continue his Black Panther run, just with a change of direction and a new number.

Marvel’s new status quo will be quite the different one, and they will have to restructure having lost some of their key creators. Brian Michael Bendis, Jeff Lemire, John Romita Jr, Tom King, and several others have all signed exclusives with other companies and they will no longer be able to use their immense talents. That said, they have recruited what I believe to be the next generation of lead writers. Matthew Rosenberg and Donny Cates have recently gone full time with Marvel. And they join Charles Soule, Jason Aaron, Al Ewing, Dan Slott, Mark Waid an many more. I am excited to see books in new creators hands and at the idea of having Marvel books on the shelf that people can enjoy (and that I can sell).

Now for my personal wish list. This is in no way me trying to predict what will happen, just my personal wants. I don’t read much Marvel, but the concepts listed below would definitely peak my interest. First thing first. Restore the X-Men. I want Cyclops back, I want Madrox back, I want them all back. I like the idea of keeping the color coded teams. I just want a few tweaks to them. Give Cyclops Blue, Wolverine Gold, and Jean can keep Red. While my personal ship will always be Scott and Jean together, but if it means a happy (and well represented Scott, I can accept him and Emma). Next on my bucket list would be a Doom title. He has made enemies of Marvels underworld as of late, and I would like a book where he tries to regain street cred as a villain, in light of his more recent super heroics. Seeing Hank Pym somewhere and not fused with Ultron or being represented like a maniac would also be a welcome sight for me. Finally, I’d love a new Defenders team. In the wake of Bendis’ departure, I would love to see a drastically different team. I would like to see Moon Knight, Daredevil, Misty Knight, Colleen Wing, and Cloak and Dagger.

Long winded rant, but that’s what I do. What would you like to see from the new Marvel? What do you think of the changes and what would you like to see?

Civilization 6 First Look: The Zulu

CIV-6-Zulu-1-2

Well apparently I incorrectly counted the amount of Civ’s that would be featured in the Rise and Fall expansion, as tomorrow people will be able to play with Shaka of the Zulu as well as the other new Civ’s. To recap, Rise and Fall adds Korea, The Netherlands, Mongolia, a new leader for India, The Cree, Georgia, Scotland, and the Mapuche.

You can watch the full teaser here.

The Zulu’s unique ability is Isibongo. Units upgrade to Armies and Corps when they capture cities. Additionally cities with garrisoned units provide extra loyalty. Their unique infrastructure is the Ikanda. Which is a replaces the Encampment District. It provides +1 housing and once you unlock the ability to make Army’s and Corpse, you can build them outright. They can also be built much cheaper than normal. The Zulu once again wield their Impi warriors. This time around the Impi replace the Pikeman. The Civ 6 version of the Impi have several unique benefits. They have an increased Flanking bonus, are less expensive than similar era units, earn experience faster, and cost less maintenance. As expected, the Zulu are focused on doing one thing. Fighting. Shaka’s unique ability only aides this further. His Amabutho ability unlocks the building of Army and Corps units earlier than normal and have extra combat strength.

The Zulu are easily one of the most aggressive Civ’s in the game. He should be instantly feared when you see him, and should not be trifled with in the renaissance or Industrial era. Once he has his Impi, things will be very, very difficult for you. Fortunately their bonuses are all geared towards these mid game benefits. If you encounter him early, swift and decisive military action in the Classic or Medieval should bring you success. They will be unaffected by most normal maps, save Island plates (all non naval Civ’s have a hard time with that). However, TSL maps are where things get really interesting for them. They will spawn in South Africa and should have little problem laying waste to the Kongo just north of them. Nubia lies ahead of that, with Cleopatra and Saladin at the peninsula. All the African Civs have early to mid game benefits. Given the passive nature of the Kongo, I expect the more aggressive Zulu AI to steam roll them. Once they reach Nubia and Egypt, both of their unique units will be obsolete. Leaving the Impi armies free to lay waste to them. However, despite how well poised they are to take Africa, they will realistically need to put some time into building a navy to escort their Impi to wherever other Civilizations lie.

The Zulu, like all the other Civs, release tomorrow when Rise and Fall goes live. I will have to wait until the weekend before I can dive into it, but I can’t wait to do so!

Civilization 6 First Look: The Mapuche

mapuche

Here it is! The last New Civ in the Rise and Fall expansion. The Mapuche, led by Lautaru join Queen Seondeok of Korea, Queen Wilhelmina of Netherlands, Lord Genghis Khan of Mongolia, Emperor Chandragupta of India, Poundmaker of the Cree, Queen Tamar of Georgia, and King Robert of Scotland. Quite the lineup of leaders. Of course you can watch the full release teaser here.

The Mapuche’s unique ability is Toqui. Units trained in a city with an established Governor gain 25 % combat experience. Their units also gain +10 strength when fighting Civilizations in a Golden Age. Their ability is pretty straight forward and to the point. Their unique infrastructure is the Chemamull. This tile improvement provides culture based on the appeal of the tile it is built in. From the teaser it looks like the ability will be +3 for breathtaking, +2 for Charming, and +1 for Average. Later on in the game, the Chemamull will also provide Tourism to They have no building restrictions though, so Lautaro can start racking up culture early. This ability is very nice, early culture is hard to come by. For a Civ that looks to be more aggressive in nature it is nice that their unique improvement will help to boost their cultural output.

Their unique unit is the Malón Raider. This light cavalry unit Gains additional combat strength when near friendly territory and requires less movement to pillage. This will not only make the Mapuche excellent defenders, but good aggressors towards their neighbors. The secondary bonus will allow the unit to pillage and then move. Giving you pillage benefits while also being able to ride away out of harm. This combines will with their unique ability. You will probably want one of your cities to build a Stable so that your Raiders can cause havoc for your neighbors.

Malon Raider

also is that a top hat?

Finally is Lautaro’s unique ability, Swift Hawk. When you defeat an enemy unit within the borders of an enemy city, that city loses 5 loyalty. This means that The Mapuche need only destroy units, with enough pressure, they can capture a city 100% in tact. This aggressive/passive ability will be very fun to play around with. Combined with their Raiders and you can use hit and run tactics to devastate enemy units and crush their morale.

All of the Mapuche’s abilities point towards one thing. Being able to kill Pedro. Every player has that one Civ that somehow shows up on every map, and pesters you endlessly. Pedro of Brazil is mine. I tend to build Wonders and Attract Great People, and that is exactly what Pedro does. So we always end up coming to blows. Whether that be on the field of battle, or in the cultural arena. So having a Civilization so fine tuned to crush Pedro is heartwarming for me to see. All the better, as they are neighbors in TSL games. No longer will Pedro run amok in South America while you toil away in other parts of the world. They will finally have to face a threat who is very good at dealing with them. The Mapuche should have little problem facing off against Pedro. Their next neighbors would be the Aztec’s. Yet by the time the two forces meet, they should have the upper hand as Eagle Warriors will be less relevant. The Swift Hawk ability too should give them the best opportunity to capture the Aztec capital. It is nestled perfectly between mountains, and is very hard for the AI to conquer.

On normal maps they will be fun to play with, and annoying to play against. The closer you are to Lautaro, the worse it will be for you. With all the new Civ’s announced and just a few days to go, who will you lead when Civilization 6 Rise and Fall releases?

Civilization 6 First Look: Scotland

Robert_the_Bruce_promo_art_(Civ6)

We are coming down to the wire! Just a few short days until Rise and Fall is released and we all can get our hands on the newest leaders, mechanics, and units. Before then I will do my best to get out the final Civ, the Mapuche, covered. Until then, let’s talk about Scotland!

You can see my write ups on Korea, The Netherlands, Mongolia, Chandragupta, The Cree, and Georgia here. You can see the full Scotland teaser here.

Scotland’s Unique ability is Scottish Enlightenment. Happy Cities Produce +5 Production and +5 Science. They also gain +1 Great Scientist and Engineer points per Campus/Industrial Zone. Ecstatic Cities double all these yields. This is a huge boon. It is already good to keep your cities happy, and if you are doing so, they will work for you extra hard. This will allow Scotland to quickly climb the tech tree and build things faster. Extra production means faster Wonders, which means more happiness. This goes hand in hand with their unique structure, the Golf Course. This provides a free amenity and gold. It also provides culture if adjacent to a city and further boost if next to an Entertainment Complex. A free amenity is incredibly powerful, and as such Scotland can only build one Golf Course per city. That said, the additional yields of gold and culture will help you keep up with the Civics tree, which will probably be far behind your Tech tree.

Scotland’s unique unit is the Highlander. The Highlander replaces the Ranger, and gains a combat bonus when fighting on hills or in woods. The full bonus is not yet known, but the video shows off a ranged strength of 90 (it is occupying both a hill and a forest). Given that the Ranger has a ranged strength of 60, it would appear likely that the Highlanders base is at 70. Giving +10 per hill and woods. While it may not appear like a great unit at first, in reality it is exceptional. It has the ability to attack at strength of 90 if you utilize surroundings. If not, you are still likely to be able to attack with a strength of 80. The dominant unit at the time Highlanders will be relevant? Musketmen. Which have 55 melee strength and no ranged capabilities. Scotland’s Highlander army can defend admirably against an attack by the Musketman, and finish them off with superior fire power on your turn. The highlander can also move one tile faster than a Musketman, and promotes from a Scout. By the time you unlock the tech to build the Highlander, Scouts will be dirt cheap. If you economy is in the right place, you can easily churn out Scouts in preparation, and then promote them all when Rifling has been researched. The downside to them is that they have the Recon promotion tree. Meaning few combat bonuses when fighting, and they cannot promote to the Infantry unit. That said, this unit is incredible.

Robert the Bruce’s unique ability is Bannockburn. They can declare a War of Liberation after unlocking the Defensive Tactics Civic instead of the Diplomatic Service Civic. Which is the difference between the Classical Era and the Renaissance Era. They also gain +100 production and +2 movement for the first 10 turns of the war. Scotland will be a powerhouse when liberating city states, or attacking aggressive civ’s that have conquered their neighbors. The best part? You don’t have to actually liberate the cities you take. Of course, if you don’t, the world will hate you.

Scotland looks like a fantastic Civ. They excel at Production and Science and make them poised as an excellent Space Race candidate. Not because of their insane outputs, like Korea, but because they have the infrastructure to back it up. Scotland will make the use of most all terrains, but cities near hills and woods will be especially defensive once the Highlander comes into play. TSL maps will be very tricky. They will naturally start off north of London and be hard pressed to expand. Fortunately neither England or Scotland has any early game bonus, so they will be on even footing when they inevitably go to war. Yet with Scotland’s Production, they should be able to curve ahead of England Production wise. Provided they are happy. After that, the world is their oyster. They will need sailing to get anywhere, but can thrive on any part of the map. They will have to watch out for Norway and The Netherlands as the Scottish Navy will be nothing to boast about.

Scotland is my hands down pick to play first when Rise and Fall launches this week. Stay tuned for the Mapuche, and who are you most excited to play in Civilization 6 Rise and Fall?

Civilization 6 First Look: Georgia

Georgia-leader

Georgia joins the Civilization franchise with the new Rise and Fall expansion. Led by Tamar, Georgia looks to be the religion heavy Civ of the expansion. Korea is Science, Netherlands are a toolbox, Mongolia and Chandragupta both provide aggression, and The Cree are diplomatic.

You can watch the full Georgia teaser here.

Georgia’s unique Civ ability is Strength in Unity. It’s short and simple, when making a dedication in a Golden Age you also make a normal age dedication. This allows you to accumulate Era score faster and help propel you into multiple sustained Golden Ages. It reminds me a bit of Persia from Civ 5. I expect Tamar will spend most of the game in a golden age. Which will be a boon for her city loyalty. The unique structure is the Tsikhe. It replaces the Renaissance Era walls and is built at a cheaper production value. It also provides the city that builds it additional faith output (from the video it looks like +3 faith). Cheaper defenses are never a bad thing, and when they provide you with extra faith.

Their unique unit is also pretty straight forward Khevsureti. The replacement for the Swordsman has additional combat strength when attacking on hills, and they suffer no movement penalty on hills. Given that a Swordsman is base 36 strenght, it looks like they get a +4 buff as their attack is 40 in the video. Tamar’s unique ability is Glory of the World, Kingdom, and Faith. Tamar can declare a Protectorate War after gaining the Theocracy Civic. This should be easy to do as I expect anyone playing Georgia to be deep in the Faith based civics. After declaring a Protectorate war her gain a faith boost for the first 10 turns of the war. This ability also doubles envoys sent to City States following your religion. While Georgia isn’t the most religious of Civ’s, they will be knee deep in the Civic’s necessary for a flourishing religion.

Georgia is going to be an excellent addition to the franchise. They will be the most fun on a TSL Map. They are well suited to deal with the all the threats that surround them. And they will be surrounded. They will have to contend with Russia, Poland, Rome, Scythia, and Greece. Their Tsikhe will keep your cities faith, and keep your religion fueled. Their ability to perpetuate Golden Ages will also give them a huge edge against their foes. Combined with the fact they can win over almost any city state, they will have a fantastic time outpacing enemy civ’s.

The final two expansions have already been named. Scotland and the Mapuche. Both look to be like a ton of fun. Who will you play first when Rise and Fall drops?