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Final Performance Rankings

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  1. Intro

    Well, this is it. After almost THREE YEARS on our Antarctic party sub, our golden age is finally coming to an end. With the upcoming advent of Part 120, we will finally witness a sole surviving civilisation triumph over the other sixty, and I for one expect to feel quite emotional when it happens. So it seems like the perfect time for a look back. Here are, as voted by the /r/civbattleroyale community, the Final Performance Rankings of our sixty-one civs.

  2. Map

    What you’re about to see is the closest we will ever have to an objective finishing order – where the vote was based on overall performance, historical power, influence over the game and various other factors, rather than just how quickly they died. Because let’s face it: despite finishing ninth, the Boers were not the ninth-best civ. (A quick note: there was a little bit of shitvoting in the poll, with people blatantly voting for their personal favourite civs. Unfortunately for them, this poll was run by someone with very close attention to detail. So if you put the Maori as the greatest civ in the game and everyone else joint last [for example], rest assured your shitvote has been deleted for the sake of objectivity.) So with a final look at the last moment all 61 civs were together, the countdown begins.

  3. 61

    Poor Caesar, finishing last in both chronological rankings and Performance Rankings. A peninsula start on a fustercluck continent was unlikely to end well, and the seeds of failure were sown when they settled Neapolis in an isolated position, behind a mountain range and right next to Napoleon. In the end, even the immortal Polish scout couldn’t stop the Spartans from wiping Rome off the map before we truly got to see them perform.

  4. 60

    Eight other civs may have died before them, but Byzantium will always be remembered as the first civ out of the fight. Once again it was the Spartans, taking their capital on turn 113 (part 7), and from then on they were no more than a rump state atop the Black Sea. Long after people got bored of them existing, they finished their role in the tournament by declaring war on regional power Finland: a decision that was either the most badass way of exiting the stage, or just plain stupid. (Given that most of Finland’s empire was invisible to Alexos at the time, I suspect it was the latter.)

  5. 59

    Next, we go to one of the more forgettable civs: one that only settled five cities and rarely seemed in control of more than three at a time. Trapped in Central America between Mexico and the Buccs with far too many mountains in their territory, Pacal just never had an opportunity to do anything. Their biggest contribution to the tournament was showcasing the first instance of Hawaiian peacekeepers, a running joke that would last for years. And if it weren’t for their friends in orange, the Maya would have died long before part 32.

  6. 58

    In 58th, the second civ to go down. The Ashanti weren’t humiliatingly bad like Rome or Byzantium – they had a big chunk of West Africa in the early parts – but once their capital fell to a Moroccan naval strike(!), the following double-team of Mali and Kongo was too much for them to withstand. Their most memorable contribution was a sole pikeman, who lived on for thousands of years without a home to call his own.

  7. 57

    It must suck to have one of the most aggressive, conquest-based civs in a tournament, with a great UU and an audience expecting great things, only to be knocked out the same way twice. Poor Shaka’s Mk2 ending was exactly the same as his Mk1 ending, cornered early by the Boers and euthanised later at Paul Kruger’s convenience. By the time the Impi came along, even a full carpet couldn’t help a civ trapped at the bottom of a continent.

  8. 56

    The Philippines’ performance is a fine analogy for life not being fair. They did nothing wrong but were the third civ out anyway. They expanded excellently for an archipelago civ, but got destroyed by a Japan-Australia-Champa alliance that was impossible to defend against. “It is possible to commit no mistakes and still lose. That is not weakness. That is life.” –Captain Picard, Star Trek

  9. 55

    Let’s face it, nobody wanted the Nazis to do well, even in AI form. (Or at least, nobody admitted to it on the internet.) Hitler’s two CBR deaths were each tinged with utterly beautiful irony: in Mk1 his master race was extinguished by Poland, and in Mk 2 his entire empire converted to Judaism. In my head, that settler escaping Munich was Hitler himself, trying to start a new life somewhere only to be caught offscreen - and either killed, or turned into somebody’s worker for another few thousand years.

  10. 54

    Poland was one of the great disappointments of Mk2, mainly because of the weight of expectation. It’s easy to pinpoint what they did wrong: they settled well and then refused to conquer other civs. Their lack of war prowess ground them down – Finland took two cities, Sweden took two cities, and then the Spartans (once again) finished them off, exactly on turn 300. Madness.

  11. 53

    Of the nine civs revealed so far, five have been European. It really was a do-or-die continent where mistakes were not forgiven. And in England’s case, their mistake was made in part 1 – on turn 6 – as they used their second settler to forward-settle the French rather than focus on their own island. English folk like myself then watched in embarrassment as the Irish seized the islands for themselves, and forced Her Royal Highness out of her homeland citadel by citadel. Even the longbowmen couldn’t help, and their final bastion of Hastings in northern Spain was absorbed by the French.

  12. 52

    We now leave the “bad beyond redemption” section, and enter the “what, they existed?” section. Being forgotten is only marginally better than humiliation, and that’s pretty much all the Timurids achieved. Don’t get me wrong, they were a very large civ in Central Asia, controlling eleven cities and 129 tiles in part 15 (only slightly smaller than Sibir), but did very little with it. To me, as shown by the picture, the Timurids’ sole contribution to the tournament was to serve as a platform for Sibir to break out on, and make the sub realise they were a force to be reckoned with. The Timurids seemed to exist purely to showcase someone better than them.

  13. 51

    Otherwise known as Snorway. I’m struggling to think of a decent eulogy for Haakon Haakonson. There was a time when Sweden and Norway looked like it might be a cataclysmic early-game showdown. Then Norway lost Eidsvoll in part 3 and stayed on the back foot, sitting still while Sweden marched through Germany and Poland. A well-earned Final Performance Ranking, eleven places lower than their chronological finish.

  14. 50

    “Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz… Hm? Oh, we made the top fifty. Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz…”

  15. 49

    All I remember about Burma was that they were the very last civ to capture a city. Which they did, as in this picture, immediately before the Trung Sisters put them out of their misery. With very little impact on the world stage, it’s easy to forget Burma were in the tournament.

  16. 48

    The Kongo had a surprisingly big early empire (if a little fragmented), and overall they fought pretty well. But they left the tournament so quickly that their achievements are easily forgotten. But hey, if you’re going to die early, die in a way that tells a story. The civs in the last four slides all outlived the Kongolese, but they didn’t have a GHOST FLEET to make them memorable. After a hard-fought but futile battle against the Boers, they kept flipping their cities until their melee units ran out, leaving a massive navy that was doomed never to see port again.

  17. 47

    In Mk2, the Huns suffered from the same familiar AI issue: they just would not stop burning shit to the ground. Never was this more decisive than taking Josef Stalin’s second city, razing it and then making peace, only to watch as Stalin settled Leningrad again in precisely the same spot. Of course, it didn’t help having a thin north-to-south empire, with Finland all the way down the western border and Sibir all the way down the east. But mainly, Attila shouldn’t have burned shit to the ground.

  18. 46

    The biggest shock of the early game was China getting destroyed in their own war, which they declared against Vietnam. The consequences lasted almost the whole tournament as the Trung Sisters became the world power that so many of us predicted China would be. But it has to be said, Mao was bloody good at surviving. I will go to my dying day believing that the original AI controlling China ragequit after losing the war, and was replaced by an incomprehensible genius that kept them alive far longer than any reasonable person could have predicted.

  19. 45

    It quickly became clear that America would not flourish in a crowded continent where they expanded slowly and gave away cities early. The best thing they did was choose the freedom ideology, a near-certain death sentence in a battle royale, but true to the American spirit and reflecting Abraham Lincoln’s uncompromising nature. Even in death, freedom did not die… returning to the world for one turn, as the Buccs resurrected Lincoln from the grave to get rid of some warmonger points, rather than take a city they knew they’d lose.

  20. 44

    Israel did not enjoy the unfettered Middle East expansion they had in Mk1, and only played a bit part in this tournament. Most of their contribution concentrated on the sheer amount of scouts they sent around a world they would never conquer. King David may have killed Goliath in one of my favourite Bible chapters ever, but his AI counterpart could not even keep Bethlehem from the Ayyubids. In the Final Performance Rankings, they finish in last place out of the Middle Eastern civs. Incidentally, could somebody please tell me once and for all why the Israel civball is a cuboid?

  21. 43

    Speaking of slingers, King David finishes just behind the Inca: one of the more aggressive Firaxis civs on a continent of pacifists, where 3000 continuous years of warfare could not result in a single city capture for Pachacuti. You could of course spin it another way, and say they lasted 3000 years against Brazilian aggression where the Boers barely lasted a decade, but we all know that back then, Pedro just couldn’t be arsed. And yes, I’m using a British phrase so I can listen to Dawkinzz try to say it on YouTube.

  22. 42

    The performance of the Mughals united the sub, as we came together in one voice to ask “why the hell did we choose the Mughals over nuclear Ghandi?” Decent early expansion led to almost no conquests, and when the Finnish paratroopers came from the other side of the world, Akbar could only gaze and shout “it’s a trap”, whilst wondering how Kekkonen could build so many flying troops without the oil to produce any planes.

  23. 41

    Where do we start with Chief Sitting Bull? After an understandably terrible performance, surrounded on all sides from their very starting location, he became something of a cult figure in the civbattleroyale community thanks to his habit of rising from the grave. The fact that one of his resurrections came on an actual Easter Sunday was particularly hilarious. Finishing fifteen places above his chronological 56th, this is a clear demonstration of the influence a civ can have on a tournament even if they don’t ultimately change the result.

  24. 40

    Eva Perón went down in history as the woman who brought blood to South America. After three millennia of war without a city flip, we watched in surprise as Argentina briefly took Machu and a ton of civs united to declare war on them. It may seem a little harsh that the capture of one city led to the death of a civilisation, but in all fairness it was the most shocking event in South American history at the time. All the great generals in the world couldn’t save Eva, and she was gone before the end of part 40.

  25. 39

    Before this tournament, how many of us even knew who the Champa were? One thing I love about the Civilization series is the opportunities that come your way to learn about peoples you’ve never heard of. The Champa delivered a moderately good display, playing a part in destroying the Philippines and putting up a good defence against Vietnam. Unfortunately though, cannons against helicopter gunships was never going to be an even fight.

  26. 38

    Maria the Mad, as she was known IRL, took on a whole new persona in the CBR as ‘Lazy Maria’. After initially impressive performances and seizing much of the Mediterranean, Maria just sat back and did very little. Except, as shown in this picture, giving away a major homeland city in a peace deal with a civ who had never reached within touching distance of her. Her death came at the hands of Henry Morgan in the first trans-continental conquest of the game (which to be fair was a pretty incredible one).

  27. 37

    Mali’s legacy seems to be a rather tragic one. Despite holding onto a nice big part of Africa for thousands of years and destroying the Ashanti early on, they are most vividly remembered for: 1) Hosting a nuclear holocaust as the Buccaneers wiped out most of their population; 2) The Boers rolling over in their sleep and wiping them out in one part. They were not a poor civ, but they didn’t last long once the poor civs were sent to the glue factory.

  28. 36

    In my games, Napoleon’s always an aggressive bastard. Not in this game though, once the main layout of Europe was established. After finishing off the English, France did absolutely nothing until a suicidal declaration of war against Iceland, which saw every city but one taken in a single part. To be fair though, even without that declaration, nobody predicted them doing much until someone wiped them out anyway.

  29. 35

    Oops, I used the same picture for two different slides. Silly me. The Soviet Union had a very good start, aggressive in both their settling and their citadelling. But that was where their potential ended, and they lost all but THREE of their eighteen early cities to Sibir. After that it was only a matter of time until Urho Kekkonen cleared up the remains. In this tournament, just as in real life, the Soviet Union was just no match for Finland.

  30. 34

    In a fairly unremarkable display, Persia was a civ that was just there. They settled an average amount of space, took Baghdad from Arabia, took Ghazni from the Timurids, and then did literally nothing else until the Vietnamese marched west. And after pummelling through most of the Afghan empire and Australian India, a sleepy Persia was no challenge at all for the Trung Sisters.

  31. 33

    When you look at the fact that Ireland finished 50th in the tournament but are ranked 33rd by the community, it really emphasises how living well is not the same as living long. The Irish gave a horrifyingly brilliant performance against the English, and despite their near-instant death at the hands of Iceland, clearly the community thought enough of them to rank them close to the top half.

  32. 32

    From the moment Saladin settled Dvin on the Suez canal, we knew we’d be looking at a civ that knew what it was doing. And, like Ireland, their Final Performance Ranking is much higher than their exit position. At one point they conquered their way, very briefly, into owning more of Africa than Ethiopia and Carthage. But an ill-fated war against the latter and a harsh citadelling from the former left the Ayyubids helpless in the end.

  33. 31

    Placed 61st in the Power Rankings, both in part 0’s predictive rankings and at the end of part 1 too, Morocco did well to finish precisely in the middle: thirty civs died before them and thirty outlived them. And here they are, thirty civs ranked below them and thirty above. Seizing the Great Lighthouse early on and taking the Ashanti capital, even reaching into Iberia, Morocco did well until there were no weaker civs around them. Not a shameful performance by a long stretch, but they were helpless when the pirates came for them.

  34. 30

    And now into the top half, we have a civ that did nothing. Arabia settled everywhere that wouldn’t have naturally have been settled by other civs (except the Horn of Africa), managed to take Bethlehem and some other place, and then just survived until Ethiopia destroyed them. Their constant (if uneventful) presence and comparative longevity is probably why the community ranked them so high.

  35. 29

    It’s fair to say that Japan did reasonably well, not restricting themselves to their own islands and fighting some decent wars across the Pacific. (Just like in real life again, except that probably sounds a bit wrong here.) But they were subdued all the same, and would have died a lot earlier if Korea hadn’t come to their defence and stopped the Australians from taking their homeland, through sheer force of occupying enough tiles to keep the Aussies out. A true show of ill-fated friendship.

  36. 28

    Although the Tibet we all remember is the one in this picture, there was a time when they were a decent empire. More ambitious than any of us could have expected, they kept settling cities in the faces of bigger civs, even settling next to Finnish homeland after they had otherwise become a city state. Their Performance Ranking may be eight places below their chronological finish, but their influence over the game was much bigger than some might think. Even though they spent most of their days being the eye in the Vietnamese dragon – the Lesotho of the CBR world – their eventual death was the event which sparked the beginning of the end. Once they were gone and the remaining civs ganged up on Vietnam, all hell broke loose across the cylinder and the tournament never calmed down again.

  37. 27

    In honour of Hawaii’s lost dreams, I include a picture of their Central American conquests: the ones that were wiped out thanks to a reset that took the cylinder back in time to turn 300. In the real universe the Maori won Uxmal instead, leaving Hawaii fans understandably annoyed. Hawaii were always destined to be a minor civ that wouldn’t do much whilst surviving a long time. But they didn’t disappoint, providing peacekeeping entertainment for millennia and even putting up decent fights in Baja California. Once Chile came and conquered their paradise, they were left as a one-tile state waiting to be put out of their misery. But despite all they went through, never once were they ranked last in the Power Rankings: an achievement that is both hilarious and rather impressive.

  38. 26

    Reaching right into the endgame, Sri Lanka may have been one of the less active civs but they knew a thing or two about survival. I don’t know whether it was strategic cunning or just knowing how to not piss people off (although taking land from the dying Mughals certainly helped), but even after Australian conquests in their homeland they just kept living on. Most civs would have lost an outpost in the Middle East pretty quickly, but Sri Lanka stayed on the peninsula like a chocolate stain on a white dress. Boring perhaps, but they played well. As well as could have been expected of them.

  39. 25

    Let’s be honest- that one nuke drop on Sydney was such a profoundly shocking moment in the tournament, that we completely overlook how fast they were otherwise wiped out. Te Rauparaha showed pretty effectively how it’s better to burn out than fade away: better to go out with a bang, so to speak. In any other region, the Maori may have been a superpower. But with Australia taking up most of their expansion room, and missed opportunities for a joint war with the Kimberley, there was nowhere for them to go. Nonetheless, they put on a glowing performance before they were extinguished.

  40. 24

    I don’t know how Carthage managed to fight so brilliantly and expand so much with such an outdated army, but they put on a performance to be proud of. And thanks for their amphibious elephant squadrons, they spent much of their existence holding land in Europe. Ultimately, their conquest of Bilbais was a Pyrrhic victory – a case of winning the battle but losing the war. Fighting the Ayyubids and an enormously strong Ethiopia at the same time, Carthage was only kept safe by the fact that their enemies didn’t have open borders with each other. Once Bilbais was in Carthaginian possession and a border was created with Ethiopia, nothing could stop Haile Selassie’s troops from pouring into their homeland, and even the most outdated army they could muster would not save them.

  41. 23

    It’s a real shame that Chile didn’t match their fantastic performance in Mk1, when their backdoor squad conquered much of the western coastline and even saw them establish a nice foothold in Africa. Here in 23rd place they are the second-highest performer in South America (you’ll never guess who they lost out to), and that was down to just taking the longest to die. They at least had ambitions in the Pacific and were responsible for a horrifying mass slaughter in Hawaii, but once Brazil comes for you, you either live for 3000 years or you die straight away.

  42. 22

    There was a lot of hope for the Graveyard of Empires, who held a regular spot in the top ten in the early game. It was easy to see why from this picture alone: back in the days of warriors, archers and chariots, they had a huge homeland and an army to be terrified of. For much of the game they never seemed to be under much threat. Even when Vietnam declared war on them, most of us predicted them only losing a few cities before the mountains made further losses impossible. Not for the first time, the world may have underestimated the Vietnamese: before too long, the Afghans were down to their last three cities, which would later be taken by Sibir.

  43. 21

    Armenia and Sri Lanka perhaps had similar performances: not being particularly strong but surviving into the endgame anyway. In Armenia’s case they were not afraid of a good fight, whichever way it went. Predictable wars against Israel went well for them, but not many others- and eventually they were incapable of stopping the Spartans’ rampage. Confined to three cities for much of their final days, Armenia’s size was probably not an accurate reflection of their strength - it took both Sibir and the Boers to bring them down. “It is not enough to survive – one has to be worthy of survival.” - Admiral Adama, Battlestar Galactica.

  44. 20

    Despite a big early empire, people’s hopes for Mexico were lowered by this hilariously inept invasion of the largely undefended Texan capital. But to be fair to them, they kept their empire large, strong and stable for much of the game. When the much smaller Blackfoot came for them, I don’t think anyone expected Mexico’s empire to be totally wiped out, but you don’t reach the top twenty in the Final Performance Rankings without the community respecting your overall performance. And they are beaten by five votes by their perennial rivals…

  45. 19

    In another example of the early game going extremely well, there were some who believed the final North American showdown would be fought between them and the Inuit. And who can blame them? Their successful wars against Lincoln’s America and the downfall of the Sioux left the middle of the continent entirely under Sam Houston’s control. Sadly, the Inuit declared war far earlier than in the script, found a thin channel through Canada past the Great Lakes, and were more ruthless than any of us could have imagined. Before long the White Walkers had a big core down the centre of North America, pushing Texas into the Gulf of Mexico with just Austin (and later Laredo) to host their remaining troops.

  46. 18

    Sometimes you can finish in the top twenty and still have a community disappointed with your performance. This happened to Genghis Khan of all people, whose traditionally aggressive civ did not even begin to live up to expectations. Part of this was their bias for Keshigs leaving them devoid of melee units, but it was mainly just an uncharacteristic lack of aggression. If only this game had had city states, we may have seen more violence. The picture I’ve chosen for Mongolia is a screenshot of one of their most defining moments: when they were a turn or two away from wiping China off the face of the cylinder (maybe the Chinese should have built a wall or something)… only to make peace at the last minute and send their troops back home.

  47. 17

    In 17th place, the first of our former #1 civs. Canada seemed so promising, and are a large reason why Final Performance Rankings were needed: they finished in 30th place but were DEFINITELY not the 30th-best civ. The final destruction of Canada proved once and for all that the Inuit would be unstoppable on their own continent, and the two wars they fought together were two of the most entertaining of the tournament. I think it’s fair to say that despite their early exit, they deserve the recognition they have.

  48. 16

    How to Yakutia: Get put in the tournament as a space filler, because no major civilisation in world history lived in the same area. 2) Expand rapidly as predicted, and get ranked #1 for the first seven parts (excluding part 0). 3) Once you’ve taken all the land you would have settled anyway, do nothing. 4) Be the last civ to fight in a war. 5) Fight a brutal war against the Inuit which does little more than wipe some cities off the map. 6) Get attacked by Korea and lose almost EVERYTHING. 7) Be stuck in Northern Russia for so long, doing so little, with no expansion prospects, that the community just wants you to die already. 8) Finally die.

  49. 15

    Oh, what could have been. We knew from the beginning that the winner between Jandamarra and Henry Parkes would have a bloody good shot at winning the entire tournament. But instead of teaming up with the Maori and expanding east, they expanded west into Indonesia (who only woke up halfway through fighting) and collected that sweet warmonger penalty. But at least they had somewhere to live out their final days after Australia wiped them off the continent in one of the most brutal wars the cylinder has ever seen.

  50. 14

    Although finishing on the losing side, being second on a continent with the Boers is no bad thing. I’m glad Ethiopia have been ranked as high as #14, as their performance certainly warranted it. After crushing the Ayyubids and Carthage in quick succession, they showed some true AI genius by convincing the Boers to join their war against Arabia: knowing their neighbours would get nothing for themselves, knowing the warmonger penalty would not count against them, and knowing it would actually strengthen their relationship! Their ultimate loss to the Boers was devastating, but they probably struck at the best time available to them. A 1% chance of victory at that time was better than a 0% chance of victory later on.

  51. 13

    Sparta had quite a ride in this tournament, showing themselves early to take no prisoners and devastating most of their neighbours early on. Their eventual loss to stronger empires was no surprise – it soon became clear that they were no contenders for the ultimate victory – and it was sad to see them demoted to the Dvinnish Empire. But in this picture, we saw them in their proudest moments, tripling the size of their empire in two parts against overwhelming odds. The victory did not last, but it was a victory worthy of remembrance.

  52. 12

    The Blackfoot spent most of the tournament being “the civ that will lose to the Inuit one day”. But bloody hell, the Blackfoot got better with age. Back in the days of picture 1, very few people could have predicted they’d become the Ethiopia of North America. And once they reached picture 2, they suddenly realised “oh crap, we’re the Ethiopia of North America.” When war finally came with the Inuit, at first it looked like it would rival the Australia-Kimberley clash. But one part later, North America became picture 3. But the Blackfoot had an admirable tournament, even seizing land in southeast Asia, and there was no same in losing to the Inuit.

  53. 11

    Missing out on the top ten by two votes (don’t worry, it’s not like your vote would have made a difference), Finland were the ultimate surprise civ: not least in the fact that they survived the early stages of the game to begin with. Not bad for a civ placed 59th in the inaugural Power Rankings. After they had solidified a place for themselves in the world, then came the paratroopers. Taking land as far away as India, the Middle East and Mongolia, Finland were the masters of bordergore and the bane of every cartographer. They did well in most of their wars against their neighbours, until Sweden declared war with a carpet Finland could not match, and they were reduced to an empire we lovingly named Exclavia. Overall, a performance to be proud of that made for a good story too.

  54. 10

    Predicted by part 2 to be the first civ to bite the dust, Korea managed to survive all the way to the grand finale. Not just surviving, but ultimately bringing part 2’s #1 civ to its knees. Outlasting the early days thanks to China haemorrhaging their land, Korea were little more than a surviving civ until the events of this picture. Their surprise DOW against Vietnam netted them the whole Pacific coast, punishing the Trung Sisters for leaving their lands empty and taking Korea’s weakness for granted. Korea haven’t been out of the top ten since part 62 – almost half the tournament ago – and have earned their place in the final showdown.

  55. 9

    From an island start, to securing land on four continents. What a journey the Buccs had. I felt genuine sadness when they left the competition. The events pictured here show the sheer scope of Henry Morgan’s ambitions, and it was quite incredible that he succeeded. The pirates taught us all an important lesson: that if you believe in yourself, have an indomitable spirit and fight against all the odds that are against you, you too can kill millions of people and drop nukes on half a continent and validly call it success. Coiot's Note: Correction! We blew up two half continents, thank you very much.

  56. 8

    Sweden didn’t take much time to prove they weren’t the 60th-best team, as predicted in the initial rankings. At the start we were just predicting who’d die last between them, Norway and Finland, and it took nearly three years for us to get our answer. For me personally, this picture here was when I first realised that Sweden might be a force to be reckoned with. But storming over the Baltic to subdue Poland and wipe out Germany was just the start. Only then did they turn on Norway, fought respectable wars against the Boers, survived several conflicts against their brothers-in-death Iceland, and all but wiping out Finland. Pretty astonishing.

  57. 7

    Not many of us expected much of Iceland in the beginning, but settling the whole of Greenland to themselves was a pretty smart move. Beyond that, they gained a striking reputation as efficient killers, dispatching the Irish in no time at all, and wiping France of the map in barely more than a single part. They suffered from carrieritis for much of the late game and progress against Sweden was dramatically back and forth, but any civ that took African land from the Boers is worthy of respect. Dying on exactly the same turn as Sweden, I guess this community vote is the closest we have to objectively deciding who came 7th and who came 8th. But in our hearts, both civs went into the night together, and did so with their heads held high.

  58. 6

    Beating Iceland by a margin of almost ninety votes, we have the Trung Sisters. The fact that a civ like Vietnam can finish as low as sixth is a testament to how many top-quality civs we had in the game. Vietnam were destined to be something brilliant the moment they proved themselves against China, and the great westward leap – all the way to the Middle East – left many of us thinking they could be true contenders for coming second to the Boers. Really, the only mistake Vietnam made was sending so much of their army into the meatgrinder against Sibir, sacrificing so much for so little. The Boer war machine, predicted to take little more than the Arabian peninsula, just wouldn’t stop until the Brazilians stepped in. By then it was clear Vietnam’s best days were behind them, but wow were they good days.

  59. 5

    Two votes away from fourth place, the civ that will most likely die last. Australia, despite some disastrous military campaigns, cemented their place in the finale the moment the Kimberley were banished from the continent. Australia’s history is filled with success and missed opportunity in equal parts, grabbing almost 3000 tiles thanks to spreading across the ocean, but having little success on mainland Asia or South America. Nonetheless, they could make a digger carpet look bloody scary.

  60. 4

    In another case of a civ probably being chosen to fill up a gap, Sibir filled a little bit more than we expected. After their performances against the Huns, the USSR, the Timurids and Tibet, it comes as no surprise that they lasted so long and so well even in the age of Brazilian dominance. Even though I don’t think many people would have put money on Sibir to win the whole tournament, it surprises very few of us that at the end of the line, Kuchum Khan still controls scores of cities and nearly as huge an empire as he had at his peak.

  61. 3

    Admirable. Entertaining. Frightening. All perfectly valid words to describe the Inuit’s conquest of North America and beyond. It was jawdropping to watch Ekeuhnick find a small channel in North Dakota and pour enough troops through to push Texas into the Gulf of Mexico. It was enthralling to see how mercilessly they could wipe out a former #1 civ by annihilating Canada. The lengths they would go to for victory were made clear when they irradiated Kamchatka for just a few Yakutian tiles. And then the Blackfoot… the poor Blackfoot. At times it really did feel like watching the White Walkers fight their way through a helpless Westeros. Which made it even more shocking to see Brazil take the whole of mainland USA in a single part, and make their conquests all for nothing. But of course, it wasn’t for nothing. It was magnificent to watch.

  62. 2

    The presumed victors for much of the game, it almost doesn’t feel right that Paul Kruger never quite conquered a whole continent to himself. Love them or hate them, it was difficult to say the Boers didn’t earn what they won, picking off their opponents one by one – Kongo, Mali, Ethiopia, Vietnam – with increasing ferocity. Their mistake was not building enough units in a game where units meant everything. And not realising that those Brazilian peacekeepers may not have been so peaceful after all. I’m sure some detractors still believe the Boers to be the “rightful” victors, and I’ll admit it hurt to see them almost miss out on the chronological top ten. But hey, in a game where you win by conquest, it’s better not to slack off on building armies. Paul Kruger, the sub salutes you. For the longest time, your performance was just incredible.

  63. 1

    And obviously, the eventual winner came first in the Final Performance Rankings. The South Americans weren’t predicted to do much outside their own continent, let alone win, but Brazil was the one civ in the endgame that had their priorities absolutely right – not only that, but their strategy even stopped their opponents from building armies of their own! They effectively ended the game before total war even began, and their march south to Pretoria was nothing less than harrowing. Now at the end of all things, the carnival is set to march over the entire world. By the end of part 120 the cylinder will be filled to the brim with samba bands, bright clothes, football fanatics and overbearingly hot weather. And as it happens, I for one will look back on the three amazing years it took, and the journey our 11,000-strong sub enjoyed/endured along the way. I think the whole community will support me in thanking both TPangolin and BlueCassette for the untold hours of work they put in to this show. When the carnival comes, we will celebrate twice as hard for you. This is Chris/AutisticNotWeird, signing off.