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Winning 7 Wonders: Civilian Structures

Within 7 Wonders there are actually 27 different Civilian Structures, resulting in 122 victory points between them. Yes, let’s start off this article on that fact. This is the fourth article to do with 7 Wonders that we have looked at, and in this one we are breaking down the Civilian Structures in more detail.

7 Wonders, as a game, is incredibly well made. Designed by Antoine Bauza, and released in 2010, 7 Wonders is currently ranked (at the time of writing) in the top 50 board games of all time. As well as that, within the board game community, 7 Wonders is one of the most owned games. It was one of the first games to offer a serious challenge to large player counts, and it is for that reason it is still one of our most played games to date.

There are, within 7 Wonders, numerous ways of getting points. Scientific Structures and Military Structures are but two of the ways, and ways we have already covered in this series of articles. Those are modified ways of gaining points – namely through either set collection or in PvP Military engagement. Civilian Structures, in 7 Wonders, are different. Civilian Structures are how you get straight up victory points with no additional conditions attached.

You may have noticed I changed the name of this article to not be talking about 7 Wonders strategy but to be talking about WINNING 7 Wonders. Needless to say – I like this strategy.

Winning 7 Wonders - The Civilian Structures Strategy

The Civilian Structures Strategy

What are the Civilian Structures in 7 Wonders?

Within 7 Wonders as a game, Civilian Structures are the blue cards, and they represent the cultural progress your civilisation has made. They’re amongst the most interesting cards thematically and, although very simple to look at, they can be used in several different ways to great effect.

So, with that in mind, what are the Civilian Structures in 7 Wonders? Well, here is a list by Age. First, we have Age 1 (or the First Age, whichever you want to call it). The Civilian Structures in the first age are:

  • Altar x2
  • Theatre x2
  • Baths x2
  • Pawnshop x2

In the Second Age we see the same kind of split, only this time they are worth more. Before we get onto what they are however, we usually see more of a type of card in Age 2 or Age 3 because the number of resource cards goes down in Age 2 and Age 3, leaving more space for the other cards. Interestingly, as a side note, this isn’t the case with the Age 2 Civilian Structures. So, in Age 2 we have –

  • Temple x2
  • Courthouse x2
  • Statue x2
  • Aqueduct x2

We do, however, see an increase in the 3rd Age. There are more Civilian Structures then –

  • Gardens x2
  • Senate x2
  • Town Hall x3
  • Pantheon x2
  • Palace x2

Now, the points these are worth absolutely skyrockets. They go from 2 points to 8 points per Civilian Structure, making them incredibly valuable to invest in.

Winning 7 Wonders - Points Per Civilian Structure

Victory Points Per Civilian Structure

As it is possible to see, the points start off relatively low – and they increase slowly – by 1 point in Age 1, by 2 points in Age 2, and by a huge 3 points by Age 3. This means they are more reliable in the lower ages, but more likely to be hugely valuable in the final Ages.

So, How Civilian Structures Be Used?

Looking at Civilian Structures, there are a couple of ways they can be used. The first is as a primary strategy, which is not necessarily optimal, but it is possible. There are 8 in the first two Ages, with 10 in the final age. You can only have one of each named type, meaning there are effectively 13 types of Civilian Structures. The plus side is they aren’t hugely expensive as victory points assuming you can get on the right ladder later on or the right kinds of resources.

Winning 7 Wonders - Resource Needed for Civilian Structures

The Resource needed to max out on Civilian structures.

As it is possible to see, leaving aside the tech trees (of which there are surprisingly a few in the Civilian Structures) you need the most Stone or Clay to build the Civilian Structures. It is because of this that having the Hanging Gardens of Babylon or the Great Pyramid at Giza are good options for the starting cities.

The tech trees are interesting. There are three within the Civilian Structures; however, there are some that require other cards from Scientific Structures.

Those tech trees include:

Winning 7 Wonders - Civilian Structure Tech Tree

So, which tech tree is worth the most? Well the Alter route is worth 12 points, the Baths route is 8, and the Theatre route is 11. That being said, the best is actually the one that includes science – since those are three Papyrus cards – the Scriptorum, Library, and University – they are worth an additional 9 points. This makes going for Scriptorum, Library, University, Courthouse, and Senate is worth 19 points.

Okay, so that is one strategy. The other way to use Civilian Structures is as a supporting strategy. There are several other strategies that require focusing on additional cards, and this is where the pure points of the Civilian Structures can be used to boost them towards the end.

For example, take the Scientific Structures strategy. That strategy uses a large number of the cards you will be able to pick up, if completely optimised. If optimised, if that is even possible, the additional cards can be Civilian Structures to make the most out of the points. This especially works when we look at the Courthouse and the Senate cards. Both of those need science to be free. They are a part of a scientific tech tree.

TL;DR: What are the learnings from the Civilian Structures?

So, like we have looked at the strategies in closer detail for the Scientific Structures and Military Structures, we can now look in detail at the learnings for the Civilian Structures, and for the shortest analysis so far, there have been quite a few learnings. Let’s look at the top 3.

  1. The Civilian Structure strategy is worth a lot of points. It is possible to top out the scale at 61 points. This isn’t quite as high as topping out the Scientific Structures strategy, but it is a lot higher than the Military Structures. This makes it possible to focus on as a primary structure.
  2. It is possible to go for a strategy focusing on mainly on Civilian Structures; however, in order to get the most out of them, there needs to be a supporting strategy of the Scientific Structures to get the most points.
  3. Stone and Clay are the most valuable resources for a late game strategy using the Civilian Structures. This is assuming you don’t have the starting cards in each tech tree.

So, there we have it – article number 4, and a closer look at the Civilian Structures. The next article is going to be the last one where we break down one specific set of cards, and that is looking at the Commercial Structures.

In the meantime, what are your thought of the Civilian Structures? Let me know in the comments below.

Other 7 Wonders Strategy Articles:
Military Structures
Scientific Structures
Strategy Introduction

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