One of the core pillars of the Civilization VI experience is Unstacking Cities, a new feature that sees cities spread across their entire controlled territory. Now, Districts (as well as all Wonders) occupy full Tiles outside of the City Center.
Why is Unstacking Cities important?[edit | edit source]
Unstacking Cities has implications that permeate the entirety of the Civilization VI experience and this change presents new emergent strategies to players. Choosing where to settle your city is now more crucial than it has ever been, as available tiles affect the potency of Districts and limit what Wonders can be erected in that particular city. This means players must adapt to their environment, consider greater city specialization and create more diverse empires throughout play.
In Civilization V, you'd simply queue up a build order, construct your Buildings and they all live as one enormous stack within the city screen. With Civilization VI, the cities have been unstacked, removing all of that clutter within the city screen. So not only do you need to weigh build order, but you also have to consider district adjacency bonuses and what Terrains around your city center are compatible with certain Wonders. There isn’t one template for success in Civilization VI, and players need to react to the environment around them as no two games will play the same.
Combat is also affected by the Unstacking Cities mechanic in Civilization VI. As cities spread across more territory and become more exposed, adept warmongers may target specific tiles to cripple a city’s infrastructure before going after the city center. Additionally, passive players who would choose to fortify cities in the past must now consider their city’s full perimeter when deciding to pursue this same tactic in Civilization VI. A city is so much more than just its city center now.
Finally, from a visual standpoint, Unstacking Cities presents great aesthetical changes to the Civilization experience. Cities now look more diverse and reflect their growth in more distinct ways. This change goes a long way, not only in making players feel more connected to their choices and progress, but also in keeping players immersed in the beautiful world of Civilization VI.