The Scout is a Recon unit available from the start of the game.


Scouts form the eyes and ears of early civilizations. These fleet-footed warriors are not supposed to engage with enemy forces - they're supposed to find the lay of the land, discovering any potential threats or treasures. A civilization that doesn't know what's going on in the world around it is blind to both peril and opportunity.


The Scout is available from the start of the game, and is designed primarily for exploration. Its ability to move through any terrain without considering its normal movement rules allows it exceptional mobility, especially when crossing vast expenses of forest or jungle.

The Scout has a melee attack, but it is so weak that it's best to avoid combat, instead outrunning the attackers. The Scout also has a unique promotion: Survival, which not only grants it additional healing outside your territory, but also a defensive bonus that allows the unit to survive attacks and move on.

The Scout is vital in the early game for exploring the world, locating Barbarian encampments, and discovering Ancient Ruins, Natural Wonders, city-states, and other civilizations. Remember that the Ancient Ruins benefits are only available to the first civilization that explores them, and that discovering a city-state first grants you double the normal  Gold reward. Build at least one Scout as soon as possible; some players will build one first thing after setting up their capitals.

The Scout becomes obsolete with the discovery of Scientific Theory. Scouts are a "special" unit, in the sense that they're outside of the regular upgrade chain - there is no equivalent later era unit to which the Scout can be upgraded with  Gold. They can, however, be upgraded by the "advanced weapons" bonus of an Ancient Ruin, resulting in an Archer that ignores terrain penalties. This special unit can then be upgraded by normal means and will retain the path finding bonus all the way through the tech tree.

Unique Unit Replacements


Art by Sukritact

Boazovázzi - The Sámi (Eadni)
Unitflag boazovazzi

  • Has a ranged attack (5 Ranged Strength)
  • -25% Strength Combat Strength (3 vs 4)
  • May herd resources, temporarily removing them from the game in exchange for Food Food and Production Production
  • Immune to Snow Attrition (ExCE)
HunterGathererIcon Wikia

Art by AgressiveWimp

Hunter-Gatherer - Çatalhöyük (Çete Reisi)
HunterGathererFlag Wikia

  • May hunt animal resources and gather edible plant resources which may be traded for a Food Food boost upon entering a city (The same resource may not be hunted/gathered again until 10 turns have passed)
Marbull - The Murri (Gambu Ganuurru)
  • -25% Combat Strength (3 vs 4)
  • -28% Production Cost (18 vs 25)
  • Double Movement on Roads
  • May use enemy roads
  • May enter the territory of civilizations you have an embassy with

Art by LastSword

Nas Tuki - The Olmecs (Po Ngbe)

  • Double Moves Movement in Jungle
  • Automatically reveals nearby Ancient Ruins

Art by Firaxis

Pathfinder - The Shoshone (Pocatello)

  • May choose benefits acquired from Ancient Ruins
  • +100% Strength Combat Strength (8 vs 4)
  • Upgrades to the Composite Bowman with Ruins
Plumednomad v2

Art by Janboruta

Plumed Nomad - The Garamantes (Djalla)
Unitflag plumednomad

  • Double Moves Movement in Desert
  • May explore rival territory
  • No Gold maintenance cost

Art by Leugi

Unaaq - The Inuit (Ekeuhnick)
Unitflag unaaq

  • -25% Strength Combat Strength (3 vs 4)
  • Has a one-hex ranged attack (7 Strength Ranged Strength)
  • Double Moves Movement on Snow 
  • May embark before Optics
  • After researching Sailing, can be expended to improve sea resources
Skybison cropped
Sky Bison - Air Nomads (Gyatso)

  • +1 Movement
  • Ignores Mountain, River and Swamp terrain costs.
  • -50% Strength Strength (2 vs 4)

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