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A city is the smallest unit of land in Imperator: Rome. Cities are grouped into provinces, and provinces are grouped into regions.

City mechanics


  • Each city has a given terrain type.
  • Each city produces one item of a single type of trade good for its province.
  • Each city has a culture and religion; Newborn pops start with them, otherwise these are completely irrelevant.
  • Coastal cities can have a port.
  • Each nation has a fixed national capital.
  • Starting civilization value, starting number of pops including their social group, culture and religion, etc.
  • Some cities have special unique modifiers. See Unique City Modifiers


  • The most populous city in a province at a given time is the provincial capital.
  • Each city has its own #civilization value.
  • Each city has a number of Population (pops) living in it.
  • Each city can have a number of Buildings.
  • Each city generates Unrest, affecting province loyalty.


  • Each city has its own supply limit.
  • Each port city has a chance to spawn pirates in an adjacent sea zone.

These actions can be performed from the city menu:

Capital city

The most populous city in a province is its capital city (indicated by a marble column icon on the map) and reaps the benefits of trade good surpluses in the province. Occupying a province's capital city is necessary to demand the entire province in a peace deal.

Each nation also has a fixed national capital (indicated by a marble column with a golden wreath underneath it on the map), which is always the capital city of its province, regardless of population. All pops in the national capital have a +25% output modifier (stacking with the capital province and region modifiers), and the city also has +0.15% population growth (stacking with the capital province modifier).

Port cities and piracy

Port cities (indicated by a lighthouse icon on the map) are the only cities were triremes can dock and be recruited. Locations of port cities are fixed.

Each port city has a monthly chance to spawn pirates in an adjacent sea zone, based on the number of trade routes (both incoming and outgoing) in the city's province. Each trade route beyond the first increases the chance by +0.1%, while each trireme docked in the city decreases it by -0.1%.

If pirates spawn, they will be a universally hostile fleet, which will blockade all port cities adjacent to their sea zone, lowering commerce income in their provinces.

Some pirate fleets already exist at the start of the game.

Terrain types

Name Modifiers Description
Terrain desert big.png Desert
  • Local population growth.pngLocal Population Growth: -0.25%
  • Attrition.pngAttrition: +1
  • Movement Cost: +10%
Arid, sandy plains stretch as far as the eye can see in every direction.
Terrain farmland big.png Farmland
  • Local population growth.pngLocal Population Growth: +0.1%
  • Slaves needed for Local Surplus: -2
This fine arable land is dotted with small clusters of fields, orchards, and grazing livestock.
Terrain forest big.png Forest
  • Attackers get a -1 penalty to their dice rolls.
  • Local population growth.png Local Population Growth: -0.1%
  • Movement Cost: +30%
A densely wooded place, forest is often quite an obstacle for passing armies.
Terrain hills big.png Hills
  • Attackers get a -1 penalty to their dice rolls.
  • Local population growth.pngLocal Population Growth: -0.1%
  • Movement Cost: +20%
This place comprises a series of shallow inclines and rolling hills.
Terrain jungle big.png Jungle
  • Local population growth.pngLocal Population Growth: -0.2%
  • Supply limit.pngSupply Limit: -50%
  • Movement Cost: +50%
Verdant, humid jungle, packed with dense vegetation, can be slow going for those who are unused to it.
Terrain marsh big.png Marsh
  • Attackers get a -1 penalty to their dice rolls.
  • Local population growth.pngLocal Population Growth: -0.1%
  • Supply limit.pngSupply Limit: -50%
  • Movement Cost: +50%
Waterlogged and often dangerous, marshland is hard to navigate, and even more difficult to inhabit.
Terrain mountain big.png Mountains
  • Attackers get a -2 penalty to their dice rolls.
  • Local population growth.png Local Population Growth: -0.2%
  • Supply limit.png Supply Limit: -50%
  • Movement Cost: +80%
Rocky, steep and treacherous, mountainous terrain can prove particularly difficult to navigate.
Terrain plains big.png Plains None A sparsely forested place, consisting of sweeping tracts of flat land.

Supply Limit

The supply limit determines whether a given army suffers attrition. Base Supply limit.pngSupply Limit is 5 + 0.5 per pop in the city. It is then multipled by Supply Limit Efficiency, the base value of which is 100%, and which can be further modified by the following:

Type Modifier Value
City feature Terrain types: Mountains / Marsh / Jungle -50%
Civilization Value +2% per point
Being the city's owner +25%
Trade goods Vegetables in the province +10%
Surplus of Vegetables in the province
(only affects the province's capital city)
+2.5% per surplus
Invention Supernumerarii (lvl 1) +10%
Fighting Season (lvl 4) +10%
Logistics Division (lvl 11) +10%
Delayed Baggage Train (lvl 15) +25%
Central Reserve (lvl 19) +25%
Diplomacy Having military access to the city +10%

Civilization value

A city's civilization value represents its level of infrastructure and urbanization and is the biggest contributor to pop happiness.

The current civilization value of the capital determines whether a state can change its type of government.

The Civilization value adjusts automatically per month. Its rate of growth can be affected by modifiers given by e.g. laws or inventions. The maximum possible civilization value a city can have is determined by the state the city belongs to. All owned cities will slowly gravitate towards this value if they are below it, and slightly more quickly towards it if they are above it. Positive civilization growth can also never push the local value above that of your capital.

A city's Civilization Value scales between 0 and 100, with each point granting the following local effects:

  • Citizen Happiness: +1%
  • Freemen Happiness: +0.7%
  • Tribesmen Happiness: -0.5%
  • Barbarian Growth: -0.005
  • Population Growth: +0.5%
  • Supply Limit: +0.02
Civilization Value Citizen Happiness Freemen Happiness Tribesmen Happiness Barbarian Growth Population Growth Supply Limit
+50 +50% +35% -25% -0.25 +25% +10
+100 +100% +70% -50% -0.5 +50% +20

The Civilization Value grows naturally over time more or less quickly depending on your laws and inventions, among others. It is limited, however, by a cap dependent on several factors. Civilization will not grow past this threshold, and if the limit falls below the current Civilization Value, it will decrease monthly at a fixed rate of -1% until it meets the cap again.

Source Civilization Cap Maximum Increase Scope
Base +10% Country
Settled Tribe Gov Bonus +10% Country
Federated Tribe +15% Country
Monarchy or Republic +30% Country
Centralization Level +0.1% per Point +10% at 100% Country
Oratory Advance +2% per Advance Level +40% at Level 20 Country
State Religion National Idea +10% Country
Gemstones Surplus in Capital +5% per Surplus Country
Gemstones Export Bonus +2.5% Country
Marketplace +1% per Level City
Emergent Center of Civilization +5% City
Center of Civilization +10% City
Emergent Capital +10% City
  • It is important to note that the Settled Tribe Government Bonus is exclusive with the State Religion National Idea due to the lack of Religious National Idea Slot in this Government.
  • Government bonuses are, of course, exclusive to each other.
  • The Centers of Civilization and Emergent Capital modifiers are obtained in the Capital City by forming regional tags (ex: Saxonia, Gaul, Albion...)

Domestic policy State Characters Attributes Position Culture Government Laws National ideas Rebellion Religion Technology
Economic policy Buildings Economy Population Trade Trade goods
Provinces Region Province Territories Colonization
Military Military traditions Army Siege Assault Land units Land warfare Naval warfare
Foreign policy Treaties Warfare Casus belli Diplomacy Subject nations Barbarians
Script Events Decisions Missions