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Firaxis will be releasing Civilization VI DLC packs with new game modes, new civilizations, and new leaders through March of 2021. Two new civilizations were released at the end of September. One of which is entirely new to the Civilization franchise. That new civ is Gaul, which is lead by Ambiorix.

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Gaul (or Gallia in its original Latin) is the name the Romans gave to a region of Western Europe that now encompasses France, Belgium, Netherlands, and parts of Germany and Austria. The land was inhabited by industrious Celtic tribes that frequently raided Greek and Phoenician settlements in southern Europe. Around 1200 BC, the small settlement of Hallstatt (near modern Salzburg, Austria) built an economy around salt mining and developed advanced metal-working techniques. These techniques spread throughout the tribes of Gaul until Hallstatt was abandoned for unknown reasons around 500 BC.

Ambiorix (whose name possibly translates to "protector-king") was a king of the Eburones clan in Belgian Gaul. After a drought destroyed much of the Roman harvests in Gaul, Julius Caesar requested that the Eburones give up their grain harvests to feed occupying Roman troops. Ambiorix conceeded, but he and his men soon joined the resistance against Caesar. The resistance did not last long, as the insult caused Rome to lead a genocidal campaign to exterminate the rest of the Eburones.

Overall, the Gauls held off the might of the Roman Republic until Gaul was finally subdued by Julius Caesar, who contracted tribes of Gauls to help him in his fight against the other tribes. The conquest of Gaul spring-boarded Caesar towards his destiny. Though the "Barbarians at the gates" theory is a widely-known explanation for the fall of Roman Empire, there is also the competing (or complimentary) theory of "Barbarians inside the gates". As Rome's conquests expanded across Europe and North Africa, the growing empire needed more and more soldiers to defend its borders. As such, later emperors opened military service to non-Romans, including Gallic mercenaries. These troops retained much of their Celtic culture, spoke Romanticized Gallic instead of Latin, had never been to Italy, and so had little loyalty to Roman law or culture. They fought for whoever would pay for their services, and their loyalty to their commanding officers enabled internal conflict that contributed to Rome's downfall as much (or perhaps more) than external threats.

When Belgium became an independent nation in 1830, historians found Caesar's accounts of Ambiorix (who Caesar praised as the "bravest and strongest of the Gauls"), and the government annointed him as a national hero. Poems and statues were commemorated in Ambiorix's honor throughout Belgium. Today, he is also a pop hero, appearing in Belgian cartoons and comic books.

DISCLAIMER:
Civilization VI is still a "living game". Strategies for the game (and for specific leaders and civs) may change as Firaxis applies balance patches, introduces new features, or expands the game through further DLC or expansion packs, or as the Civ community discovers new strategies or exploits. As such, the following strategy guide may change from time to time. I will try to keep it up-to-date, and will make notations whenever changes are made. I'll also post links in the official 2K forums and CivFanatics, where I'll also report any changes made. If possible and practical, I will try to retain the original content of the strategy for posterity.

I welcome any feedback or suggestions that readers wish to offer. Feel free to post on the linked forums, or by posting a comment at the bottom of the page.

This guide is up to date as of the release of the "New Frontiers" October 2020 ("Pirates") Update (ver. 1.0.6.9)

In Civilization VI, Ambiorix spreads his cities out a bit more, fueling his economy and culture with mines. He also swarms his opponents with units that support each other and promote the cultural development of the civilization.

Civilization VI - Ambiorix of Gaul

Ambiorix of Gaul's uniques in Civilization VI

Civilization VI - Gallic flag

Gaul capital start bias: near mine resources.

Gallic civilization unique: Hallstatt Culture

"Mines provide a minor adjacency bonus for all districts, a Culture Bomb of unowned territory, and receive +1 Culture. Specialty districts do not receive a minor adjacency for being adjacent to another district and these districts cannot be built adjacent ot the City Center"

In many ways, The Gauls are the opposite of the Maya. Where the Maya like to build a densely-packed core of cities and districts, the Gauls prefer to spread their cities and districts out a bit more. The Gauls do not receive a bonus for settling cities further apart; instead, their ability prevents specialty districts from being built adjacent to the city center. Ambiorix will need more space between cities in order to give each city a buffer of 1 tile between the city center and specialty districts. Note that "specialty districts" only include the district types that are capped by population (and which usually allow specialist citizens and generate great person points). Aqueducts, Dams, Canals, and Neighborhoods, are not specialty districts and may be built adjacent to Gallic city centers. The Entertainment Complex, Water Park, Government Plaza, Diplomatic Quarter, Aerodrome, and Spaceport are specialty districts and are not permitted to be built adjacent to a Gallic city center.

Specialty districts also do not receive minor adjacency bonuses for being adjacent to each other. Gaul can spread their districts out as much as they like in order to optimize the bonuses from terrain. However, you may end up placing districts in clusters around Theater Squares and Government Plazas, as those districts still receive their normal adjacency bonus when adjacent to other districts.

To make up for the lack of district adjacency bonuses, all districts receive a minor adjacency bonus from mines. These mines will also provide bonus culture and will act as a culture bomb, annexing adjacent tiles into the Gallic borders. The annexed tiles must be within the workable range of the city that controls the mine's tile. Thus, I recommend you check which city owns the tile before building the mine so that you can make sure that the culture bomb will annex as many adjacent tiles as possible (and that it will annex any tile(s) that you specifically want). This culture bomb works differently from other culture bombs in that it cannot annex tiles that already belong to another civilization, but since mines do not require a specific resource or are limited to one per city (like a district), their culture bombs can be used much more liberally. You can also build the mine to claim adjacent tiles, then replace the mine with another improvement or district later.

The culture bomb from mines only annexes tiles that are within 3 hexes of the Gallic city that owns the mine tile.

In the above example, the mine on the left does not annex either tile because neither tile is within the workable radius of the city of Aduatuca, which currently owns the tile that is being mined. In the image on the right, I reload the turn, swap the ownership of the tile so that Divodurum owns the tile. The mine now annexes the tile that is within workable range of Divodurum , but it still does not annex the tile that is outside of Divodurum 's workable radius, even though that tile is within the workable radius of Lisieux. This is because Lisieux does not control the mine tile.

Ambiorix's leader unique: King Of The Eburones

"Your civilization gains Culture equal to 20% of the unit's cost when a non civilian is trained. Melee, anti-cavalry, and ranged units receive +2 Combat Strength for every adjacent combat unit."

Civilization VI - Ambiorix portrait

Ambiorix can give his civilization a culture boost through the creation of a large army. Each military unit produced in a city will grant a percentage of its production cost as culture to Gaul. This will provide a sizable chunk of extra culture, especially in the early game when you're likely to be doing most of your unit-training. You'll also see large jumps in culture during periods of the game in which you are unlocking new types of units which need to be built from scratch (such as Privateers, air units, and so forth).

The culture bonus does apply when training support units (such as Battering Rams, Medics, etc.). It does not apply to Spies. The culture bonus does not apply when purchasing a unit with gold or faith. I couldn't be certain from my testing, but it appears that free units (such as the extra naval unit granted by the Venetian Arsenal) do provide the culture bonus. If anyone can concretely confirm or deny that such units grant bonus culture, please post in the comments.

Many of Ambiorix's units also basically receive free support bonuses from the start of the game, without having to research the Military Tradition civic. This bonus stacks with the normal flanking and support bonuses and gives Gaul a sizable military advantage when swarming the enemy with many units, even if Gaul's units are outdated or have relatively weak base strength.

Unique district: Oppidum

Game Info:

"A district unique to Gaul that is cheaper and available earlier than the district it replaces, the Industrial Zone. The Oppidum district is defensible with a ranged attack. When the first Oppidum is onstructed the Apprenticeship technology is unlocked.
+2 Production bonus if adjacent to a Quarry improvement or strategic resource.
"

Civilization VI - Oppidum
 

 

Requirements: Iron Working technology

Cost: 27 Production (-27 from Industrial Zone).
Maintenance Cost: none

Effects:
-1 Appeal to adjacent tiles.
+2 Production for every adjacent Quarry.
+2 Production for every adjacent strategic resource,
+1 Great Engineer point per turn.

 

 


The Oppidum is an Industrial Zone that is available in the classical era (instead of medieval) after researching Iron Working (instead of Apprenticeship). Building your first Oppidum also grants the Apprenticeship technology for free, even if you do not have the prerequisite technologies of Currency and Horseback Riding. The Workshop building will, therefore, be available to construct in all your Oppidum districts as soon as they are built.

A normal Industrial Hub, having a minor adjacency bonus for quarries, would have to find a pairs of quarry resources in order to reap any benefit from that particular adjacency. The Oppidum, however, can get by with just a single quarry, though multiple quarries would be even better. The Oppidum lacks the adjacency bonus for mines, but Gaul's Hallstat Culture ability grants a minor adjacency bonus for mines anyway. If that mine happens to be on top of a strategic resource such as iron, niter, coal, or uranium, it will have a major bonus from the strategic resource, and a minor bonus from the mine. Pairs of mines over strategic resources are therefor worth 5 total production bonus to an adjacent Oppidum. Other non-mine strategic resources (such as horses) will also grant a major adjacency bonus to the Oppidum.

A pair of strategic resources with mines will award a total of 5 production to an adjacent Oppidum.

Note that the Oppidum also does not receive an adjacency bonus for being next to Aqueducts, Dams, or Canals.

The Oppidum also defends against attack and gets a ranged attack of its own if the city has walls. The Oppidum's combat strength is the same as an Encampment.

Unique unit: Gaesatae

Civilization VI - gaesatae icon

Game Info: "Gallic unique Ancient era unit that replaces the Warrior. This unit has increased cost and receives +10 Combat Strength when fighting units with a higher base Combat Strength. +5 Combat Strength vs. district defenses."

 
 
Civilization VI - Gaesatae unit portrait
 
 

Requirements: none
Replaces: Warrior.
Obsoleted: Iron Working technology.
Upgrades to: Swordsman.

Cost: 60 Production | 240 Gold | ?? Faith [standard speed].
Maintenance Cost: none.

Promotion Class: melee,
Attack Type: melee,
Melee Strength: 20,
Movement Speed: 2.

Bonuses:
+10 strength vs anti-cavalry units.
+10 strength vs units with higher base strength.
+5 strength vs district defenses.


Gaesatae have the same base combat strength as the Warrior that they replace. However, they perform better when battling superior units, as they receive a substantial bonus when fighting units that have a higher base strength. This bonus will give the Gaesatae an advantage against Spearmen and Chariots, and will dramatically shrink the strength gap against Horsemen and Swordsmen. It will also be even in melee combat against a Crossbowman. This allows the Gaesatae to remain viable in combat through the medieval era (and possibly even into the renaissance), especially if you stack other combat bonuses from governments, policies, flanking and support, and promotions.

Gaesatae also get a moderate bonus against districts, which can help capture cities in early war rushes.

Strategy for Ambiorix of Gaul

Much like with Maya, playing the Gallic civilization will require more careful thought regarding where you will place your cities and districts. Like with the Maya, I advise thoroughly exploring the region surrounding your capital, then use the map pin feature (button above the mini-map) to plan out the location of your cities and high-priority districts. You cannot place specialty districts adjacent to the city center, which means you have to expand the city's borders before you can place a district. It's a good idea to keep a surplus of gold on hand when founding new cities so that you can immediately buy a tile and place a district. Remember that placing a district locks in its production cost, so it's a good idea to place them as soon as possible, even if you don't intend to finish its construction right away.

You can use mines to expand city borders and be able to place districts.

You'll want to specifically scout for mines, quarries, and strategic resources. Mines will provide bonus culture, which will allow Gaul to power through the civic tree and unlock governments earlier. They also expand your borders when they are built, and provide a minor adjacency bonus to any district. Quarries and strategic resources will provide valuable adjacency bonuses towards your unique Oppidum districts.

Gaul does not receive minor adjacency bonuses for adjacent districts, which means Gaul is more free to spread out the placement of districts as you see fit. Place districts wherever the terrain will provide the largest possible adjacency bonus. Use Ilkum to train lots of early Builders and place mines over hills to expand your borders and grant extra culture when working the tile. The culture bomb from mines will help spread your borders so that you can place districts in ideal locations, and hopefully sparing you from having to spend gold to buy too many tiles.

Civilization VI - iron resource

While scouting, pay particular attention to good locations for the Oppidum unique district, since it's available much earlier than the normal Industrial Zone. With a major adjacency from quarries, you don't have to look for pairs of quarry resources to find a useful location for your Oppidum districts. While a regular Industrial Zone would get no bonus from a single quarry, an Oppidum will get +2!. Of course, clustered quarries will be even better. Oppidums also get major adjacency bonuses from strategic resources. Clusters of mine-able strategic resources (iron, niter, etc.) are particularly good because the mines on the resources will provide an additional minor adjacency. Building an Oppidum adjacent to a pair of Iron mines, for example, will grant a +5 adjacency bonus to the district!

Ruhr Valley

The exception to the above rules about district placement will be the Government Plaza and any Theater Districts that you build. These still benefit from having adjacent districts. You'll still want to cluster several districts around your Government Plaza if the underlying terrain also grants decent bonuses to those districts. Your Theaters will either want to be tucked in between other districts, or they'll want to be adjacent to world wonders. Wonders can be placed adjacent to the City Center (if their placement restrictions allow it), and some good wonders for Gaul to pursue include the Pyramids (bonus charge for Builders), Terra Cotta Army (free promotion for all units), Alhambra (extra military policy slot), Ruhr Valley (bonus production from mines and quarries), and Venetian Arsenal (free duplicate naval units).

Building the first Oppidum will automatically grant you the Apprenticeship technology. You'll get era score for completing your unique district, and may also get bonus era score for researching a medieval technology early. With the free era score from starting the game with your unique unit in play, Gaul has a leg up in triggering a classical golden age, medieval golden age, or both!

Building an Oppidum will leapfrog you to the medieval Apprenticeship technology.

Even though the Oppidum district gets a ranged attack (if the city has walls), don't neglect Encampments. The Oppidum does not grant points towards Great Generals. Having a heavy military focus means that Gaul will likely want to have Generals, so you'll need to build at least one early Encampment. An ancient or classical General would certainly help with early-game war rushes. Since there is a lot of competition for generals, you may also want to consider placing Holy Sites if there are sites that provide good adjacency bonuses. Even if you don't found a religion, the surplus faith can be helpful in patronizing Great Generals before the other civs claim them all. Building the Grand Master's Chapel in your government district will also allow you to use that surplus faith to buy military land units. Sadly, these faith-purchased units won't earn you bonus culture.

Gaesatae excel at dispersing barbarians.

Speaking of war rushes, the Gaesatae will be a great unit for early war rushes or for hunting down barbarians. If you pulled off the classical or medieval golden age, then you'll also have an easier time maintaining the loyalty of your new conquests long enough for you to fill in the space between with your own cities to shore up loyalty. If you still need extra loyalty, then bring along the governor Victor or adopt loyalty policies such as Limitanei (+2 loyalty for garrisoned unit) or Preatorium (+2 loyalty for governor). Quickly building or buying a Monument will also help maintain the loyalty of cities, and you can further boost loyalty by using domestic trade routes to increase the city's population.

Gaesatae can quickly take down cities in the early game.

Regardless of whether you intend to launch an early war rush, you should definitely train a large army of units. Each unit trained will boost your culture. Combine this bonus with inspirations to speed up your progress through the civics tree, and unlocking governments and valuable policies earlier. Look to research Military Training early in order to start stacking flanking and support bonuses with the adjacent unit combat bonus provided by Ambiorix's King Of The Eburones ability.

You should also continue to train new units throughout the game, as doing so will continue to grant extra culture. You'll likely see large jumps in culture when you unlock new unit types that do not upgrade from earlier units. Units such as Privateers, air units, and Carriers will be trained from scratch, granting extra culture when you do so.

If you run out of strategic resources for new units, it can still be worthwhile to train obsolete units. Swarming the enemy with units (even out-dated ones) will grant combat bonuses that, combined with promotions and other bonuses, can make those obsolete units viable in combat against more advanced units. Remember that the King of the Eburones ability does not apply to mounted units, but mounted units can grant the combat bonus to adjacent melee, ranged, or anti-cavalry units. You can move your mounted units along the front lines (ignoring zone of control) between attacks to grant the King of the Eburones bonus to multiple units within your army. The mounted units do not have to be adjacent to the defending enemy unit; they only have to be adjacent to your attacking units. So they can stay in the back lines if you don't want to expose them to attack.

Protector of the Eburones

Gaul is obviously best-suited to a Domination Victory, with its swarm of units and combat bonus. However, it can also pivot towards other victory types as well. The free culture from training units, and from working mines, will help Gaul to power through the civic tree, unlocking governments and envoys earlier. More advanced governments will grant Diplomatic Favor. It will also give more influence towards city state envoys. Along with the free envoys from civics, Gaul has a good shot to become suzerain of multiple city states earlier than other civs, which will earn further Diplomatic Favor.

This favor can be applied towards the World Congress. You can either control the World Congress or you can vote along with other civs to earn yourself Diplomatic Victory points by voting for the winning proposition. If you want to keep this victory path open, consider avoiding capturing other civilizations' capitals early in the game. Conquering other civs' capitals provides a penalty to diplomatic favor that can be crippling to your World Congress ambitions. If you weaken your opponent and capture most of their non-capital cities, you can always come back and finish off the capital later in the game. Or let them flip from loyalty if you're applying enough pressure.

Civilization VI - Eiffel Tower world wonder

If you decide to leverage culture for a Culture Victory, keep in mind that all the mines and Oppidums will lower the appeal of much of your terrain. This will reduce the tourism capacity of National Parks and Seaside Resorts, and might even block you from creating them entirely. You'll likely have to offset the difference by using your army to capture great works, or by building the Eiffel Tower world wonder to raise the appeal of all your owned tiles.

Strong production from mines and Oppidums can also translate towards other infrastructure, such as Theater Squares, Campuses, wonders, Spaceports, and so forth. This can propel Gaul towards a Culture Victory or Science Victory.

Playing against Ambiorix of Gaul

Ambiorix's A.I. agenda: Scourge of Rome

"Likes numerous combat units. Dislikes civilizations with tiny armies."

Ambiorix can be a dangerous opponent early in the game, but an A.I.-controlled Ambiorix will likely suffer over the long term. The long-term planning required to optimally expand borders and build districts is not something that the A.I. does particularly well. As such, you can expect Gaul to place districts in sub-optimal locations. If they have lots of hills for mines, then it might make up for otherwise lackluster placement. A human player will likely do a better job of planning ahead for district placement, which could lead to a strong economy if they can surround those districts with mines.

If at war with Gaul, you might be tempted to pillage all their mines. However, pillaged mines will still provide the minor adjacency bonus to districts, and you will get no additional reward for pillaging the mines. Furthermore, the bombardment of the Oppidum means that Gallic territory will likely be very well-defended. Gallic cities can have up to 3 bombardments from walls: the city center, Oppidum, and the Encampment district. Each of these districts may also have ranged units inside the walls, allowing for up to 6 bombardments -- maybe even a seventh bomardment if the city center is on the coast and contains a garrisoned naval unit.

The extra bombardments from Oppidums means that cavalry units will be much less likely to survive hit-and-run raids into Gaul's territory. You should instead focus on bringing a large army that includes front-line melee units promoted with the Tortoise promotion, some siege weapons, ranged support, a general, and maybe also a Battering Ram and/or Siege Tower. Try to position your army so that it takes as few district bombardments as possible and focus on bringing down the walls as quickly as possible on your way to the city center.

If Gaul is an early neighbor, then you will want to look out for a Gaesatae rush. One or two Gaesatae might not be threatening, but Gaul will likely build swarms of them (along with Archers and other units). These swarms of units will give each other combat bonuses from Ambiorix's King of the Eburones ability. This bonus can add up, especially when combined with normal flanking and support bonuses, and other bonuses from government, promotions, or other sources. Splitting up Gaul's forces will limit the effectiveness of Ambiorix's ability. Try to bait his units through mountain passes, around water, or around encampments and city centers in order to limit how many units he can cluster together.

Ambiorix is generally friendlier towards other war-mongering civs with large armies.

Ambiorix's A.I. leader agenda makes him favorable towards civilizations that field a large standing army. This means that he is likely to be friendly towards other warmonger civilizations. Civilizations that like to spam military units (such as Zulu, Scythia, Nubia, and so forth), may find a useful ally in Ambiorix. If you're going for a Domination Victory against Ambiorix, then you will either want to take him out early (before he gets his Oppidums online), or ally with him against the rest of the world. You can then wait till later in the game, when you have air units or nukes that can bypass the ranged strike of his Oppidums.

However, Ambiorix's agenda only cares about the quantity of units under your control. Building a large number of cheap (preferably maintenance-free) units such as Slingers or Scouts can satisfy Ambiorix's agenda, even if those units never see a battlefield or get upgraded in the entire game. Spamming out a bunch of Scouts just prior to researching Machinery (and unlocking Skirmishers) can be an affordable way to earn Ambiorix's respect and possibly keep him off your back until you are powerful enough to take him on, or you decide to forgo conquest in favor of a peaceful victory strategy.

Discussions & Change Log

Thanks for reading. I hope this guide helps you to build a Gallic civilization that will stand the test of time!

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These strategy guides for Civilization VI have been taking longer to research and write than I would like. Part of this is due to the fact that I'm not as familiar and experienced with Civ VI as I was with Civ V when I started writing strategy guides for that game, so I have to spend more time trying to learn the different mechanics and rules associated with each new civ that I play. I also have a lot more things competing for my time.

If you enjoy this strategy guide, and would like to see more like it, please consider making a contribution and become a Patron on Patreon. As a Patron, you'll have the ability to vote on which civilization(s) you'd like to see a strategy guide for next, will receive early previews of certain content, and will have an opportunity to discuss or contribute to its development. With some additional funding, I could dedicate more time to writing guides like this one, and can maybe even branch out into more video content on Youtube.

In any case, feel free to comment and share, or discuss your Gaul strategies in the CivFanatics forums at:
https://forums.civfanatics.com/threads/
a-general-strategy-for-ambiorix-of-gaul.664418/

on the official 2K forums:
https://forums.2k.com/showthread.php?
4382625-New-strategy-guide-for-Ambiorix-of-Gaul-New-Frontiers-Pass&p=15286330#post15286330

or on Steam:
https://steamcommunity.com/app/289070/
discussions/0/2995417914190494478/

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