Top 12 BEST Maps In Civ 6 & Features

The best map types in Civilization 6 are showcased in great detail, allowing you to meticulously select the prime location and dominate the game.

In the world of Civilization 6, a well-crafted strategy is crucial for achieving victory. However, before diving into the game, there is one decision that significantly impacts your gameplay experience: selecting the right map. The best CIV 6 map plays a vital role in determining the challenges you face, the resources available, and the best path to victory.

With over 30 different map types in Civ 6, players have a plethora of options to choose from, allowing players to discover the best map that caters to their unique playstyle and strategic preferences.

For ease of understanding, here is a condensed version of the features of every best map:

Map TypeFeatures
Continents- Large landmasses separated by oceans
- A mix of large and small continents
- Encourages exploration and naval gameplay
- Balanced mix of land and sea resources
Pangea- One massive landmass with smaller islands around it
- Favors land-based empires and warfare
- Limited naval gameplay
- Encourages early expansion and competition for land
Island Plates- Numerous islands of various sizes
- Naval gameplay is essential
- Encourages settling on multiple islands
- Diverse terrain types and resources
- Favors civilizations with strong naval bonuses
Fractal Maps- Randomly generated landmasses with unpredictable shapes
- Encourages exploration and adaptation
- Can create interesting strategic chokepoints and barriers
- Terrain and resource distribution vary greatly, making each playthrough unique
Four-Leaf Clover and Six-Armed Snowflake- Symmetrical maps with equal starting positions
- Designed for balanced multiplayer gameplay
- Encourages competitive play and conflict
- Fair distribution of resources and strategic locations
Archipelago Maps- Many small islands spread across the map
- Naval gameplay and exploration are crucial
- Encourages settling multiple islands
- Favors civilizations with strong naval units and bonuses
- Diverse distribution of resources
Terra Maps- Separates players and unclaimed landmasses
- Players start on one continent, while another is uninhabited
- Encourages exploration, colonization, and competition for new land
- Balances early-game expansion with late-game colonization
TSL Earth Maps- True Start Location (TSL) maps based on Earth
- Civilizations start in their real-world geographic locations
- Historical accuracy and immersion
- Encourages role-playing and alternate history scenarios
- May create unbalanced starting positions
The Splintered Fractal- Highly randomized map with unpredictable landmasses
- Encourages exploration and adaptation
- Can create unique strategic chokepoints and barriers
- Each playthrough is different due to the diverse terrain and resource distribution
Primordial- Prehistoric-themed map with a focus on volcanic and geothermal features
- Increased number of volcanoes and geothermal fissures
- More extreme terrain and climate
- Higher yields from volcanic soil but increased risk of natural disasters
Seven Seas- Map with seven large seas surrounded by land
- Encourages naval gameplay and exploration
- Favors civilizations with strong naval units and bonuses
- Mix of land and sea resources
- Potential for strategic naval chokepoints
Modded Maps- Player-created or modified
-Can range from historical recreations to fantasy settings
-Offers diverse gameplay options, from balanced to highly unbalanced scenarios
-Requires installation of mods, which may not be compatible with all game versions or other mods

1. Continents 

Continents map civ 6
The classical Civilization experience [image by us]
Map  Description 
Continents  Some large landmasses

For the first place in Civ 6 best map, players are most attracted to the continents map. Continents maps stand out as a classic choice, offering players the quintessential Civilization experience. Being the best map type in Civ 6 for beginners, it features large landmasses separated by oceans and smaller bodies of water, effectively simulating the real-world geography of Earth’s continents. 

  • Continent maps in Civilization 6 create an interesting interplay between land and sea, with sizable landmasses divided by vast oceans.
  • This layout encourages the development of both land-based and naval forces, demanding players strike a balance between the two.
  • Additionally, the arrangement of continents promotes exploration, as players must sail across the oceans to discover new landmasses and encounter other civilizations.
  • Another notable feature of continent maps is their varied terrain, encompassing a range of different biomes such as deserts, grasslands, and tundras.

This diversity in terrain types allows for diverse gameplay, as players must adapt their strategies to the resources and geographical features available to them. Moreover, the terrain influences the distribution of city-states, natural wonders, and resources, providing ample opportunities for diplomatic and economic development.

2. Pangea

pangea maps civ 6
Land Conquest Supremacy [image credits: eXputer]
Map  Description 
Pangea A large landmass surrounded by islands 

The Pangea map type offers the best gameplay experience, focusing on land-based strategies and encouraging players to engage in territorial expansion and warfare.

Pangea maps are one of the best map types in Civ 6, designed as a single, massive continent surrounded by ocean, with all civilizations starting on the same landmass. This setup fosters intense competition for resources, strategic locations, and overall dominance.

  • Pangea maps are characterized by a large, contiguous landmass that spans the entire map, occasionally featuring smaller islands or peninsulas scattered along the coastlines.
  • The geography of a Pangea map varies greatly, with diverse terrain types including mountains, plains, hills, forests, and deserts.
  • The abundance or scarcity of resources, natural wonders, and city-state locations can also differ significantly between games, leading to a dynamic and ever-changing strategic landscape.
  • One of the defining features of Pangea maps is the lack of separate continents, which places all civilizations in close proximity to one another.
  • This ensures that players encounter rival civilizations early in the game, promoting diplomatic relations, trade, and warfare.

The absence of large bodies of water means that naval power is less influential on Pangea maps, and instead, players must focus on developing a strong land-based military and infrastructure.

3. Island Plates 

Island plates map civ 6
The perfect balance [image by eXputer]
Map  Description 
Island Plates They are both little and huge islands

Among the best map types in Civ 6 is Island Plates maps, which strike the perfect balance between land and sea, creating a gameplay experience that requires both terrestrial and naval prowess. Many players consider the island plates map type to be the map for beginners looking for a balanced game.

  • Island Plate maps in Civilization 6 generate a world with numerous islands and archipelagos of varying sizes.
  • These islands can range from small, resource-rich outposts to vast continents housing multiple civilizations.
  • This map type often leads to isolated starts, allowing players to develop their civilization without immediate threats from neighbors.
  • However, as the game progresses, the need for expansion and resource acquisition drives civilizations to explore and colonize nearby islands, leading to intense naval warfare and diplomatic intrigue.

The distribution of resources on Island Plates maps is another crucial aspect of this map type. Resources are scattered across the islands, making the control of strategic locations vital for long-term success. This map type also emphasizes the importance of ocean-based resources, such as fish, whales, and pearls, which can significantly boost a civilization’s economy and growth.

4. Fractal Maps

Fractal map civ 6
Embracing the unpredictability [image by eXputer]
Map Description 
Fractal A map that can either result in many or few landmasses 

Fractal maps are one of the most unpredictable map types in Civilization 6, making their place among the best map types in the game. If you’re looking for a challenging game, try the fractal map type – it’s often considered the map for experienced players.

They offer a unique challenge to players who thrive on adapting to diverse landscapes and unexpected twists. This map type is characterized by its random generation algorithm, which results in a mosaic of landmasses and water bodies that can vary drastically from one game to another. If you’re a player who enjoys surprises and the thrill of exploration, Fractal maps are undoubtedly for you.

  • Fractal maps are generated using a procedural algorithm that produces a wide array of terrain features, including continents, islands, peninsulas, and mountain ranges.
  • This unpredictable nature means that no two Fractal maps are ever the same, providing a fresh and unique experience every time you play.
  • While some games may result in large continents separated by vast oceans, others might generate a world with a complex network of smaller landmasses connected by shallow seas and narrow land bridges.
  • This variability in geography leads to dynamic gameplay and requires players to adapt their strategies and tactics accordingly.

Moreover, the resource distribution on Fractal maps can also be quite random. It’s common to find a dense concentration of strategic resources in some areas, while other regions may be resource-scarce. This randomness presents exciting opportunities and challenges for players as they race to establish their empires and gain control over valuable resources.

5. Four-Leaf Clover and Six-Armed Snowflake

civ 6 clover and snowflake map
4-leaf Clover and 6-armed Snowflake [image by us]
Map  Description 
4-Leaf Clover  Four balanced zones are where civilizations first emerge. Players are pushed toward the center of the map
6-Armed Snowflake  Six balanced zones, with cities surrounding islands, are the starting points for civilizations. Players are pushed toward the center of the map 

The Four-Leaf Clover and Six-Armed Snowflake map types were introduced in the “Poland Civilization & Scenario Pack” DLC and, since then, have been the best map types for PvP matches.

These symmetrical maps provide balanced starts with mirrored landmasses, promoting fair and competitive gameplay for all players. Ideal for multiplayer matches and players seeking an even playing field.

Some players enjoy the four-leaf clover map type because it creates a lot of choke points and strategic opportunities – it’s definitely Civ 6 best map for beginners who like to play defensively.

These symmetrical maps are designed to create a balanced starting position for all players, ensuring a fair and competitive gaming experience.

Four-Leaf Clover

  • Four identical, connected landmasses resembling the leaves of a clover
  • Central ocean or lake, encouraging naval exploration and combat
  • Equidistant resources and natural wonders for each player

Six-Armed Snowflake

  • Six symmetrical, connected landmasses radiating from a central ocean or lake
  • Encourages both land and naval strategies
  • Equidistant resources and natural wonders for each player

6. Archipelago Maps

archipelago civ 6 map
Mastering the Seas [image by us]
Map Description 
Archipelago Some large Islands with some small islands

Few map types offer the unique challenges and rewards that Archipelago maps do. Therefore, they are one of the best map types. Combining the best of both land and sea, these maps are perfect for players who relish the opportunity to dominate the oceans while still maintaining a solid foothold on land. Many players consider the archipelago map type to be the Civ 6 best map, especially for beginners, for a fun and relaxing game with friends.

  • Archipelago maps are characterized by a series of large and small islands scattered across a vast ocean.
  • These islands can vary in size and shape, with some offering ample space for sprawling empires, while others are little more than tiny outposts in the middle of the sea.
  • This unique landscape creates a dynamic and engaging gameplay experience that constantly keeps players on their toes.
  • One of the most distinctive features of Archipelago maps is the importance of water-based resources.
  • With limited land available, players must often rely on the wealth of the seas to fuel their economies and support their populations.
  • This means that civilizations with strong maritime capabilities, such as Norway or Indonesia, can thrive in these conditions, while those that struggle on water may find themselves at a disadvantage.

Another critical aspect of Archipelago maps is the role of naval exploration and expansion. The scattered nature of the islands means that players must be willing to venture out into the unknown and establish new cities on distant shores. Additionally, the presence of natural wonders, city-states, and rival civilizations on these remote islands creates a constant sense of discovery and excitement.

7. Terra Maps

Terra map civ 6
Discovering the New World [image by us]
Map  Description 
Terra A map consisting of continents where civilizations start at the largest continent 

The allure of discovering uncharted territories has always captured the imaginations of civilizations and leaders throughout history. Terra map types provide players with the unique opportunity to relive this excitement by embarking on a journey to colonize and expand their empires in the New World, hence being one of the best map types.

If you’re looking for a unique experience, try the terra map type – it’s often considered the best map for a game that combines land and sea exploration.

  • Terra maps in Civilization 6 are designed to emulate the real-world scenario where civilizations first emerged on a single landmass, often referred to as the “Old World.”
  • This starting landmass is typically rich in resources and natural wonders, providing ample opportunities for initial expansion.
  • However, the true challenge begins when players set their sights on the undiscovered New World, a separate landmass filled with untapped resources, unclaimed lands, and potential new allies or adversaries.
  • One of the key features of Terra maps is the distinct separation between the Old and New Worlds.
  • The civilizations all start in the Old World, with the New World remaining unoccupied until exploration and colonization efforts begin.

This map type encourages the development of naval technologies and the establishment of overseas colonies to stake a claim in the undiscovered lands. The New World can vary in size, shape, and resource distribution, ensuring that each Terra map game presents a fresh and unpredictable experience.

8. TSL Earth Maps

TSL Earth map
A true start in the real world [image by us]
Map  Description 
True start location of earth  Civilizations start at the location of historical of their historical capital on earth map

One of the most immersive and exciting map types is the True Start Location (TSL) Earth map, possibly one of the best map types As the name suggests, this map type places each civilization in its historical, real-world location, providing players with an opportunity to rewrite history on an accurately represented world stage.

From leading ancient Rome to dominating the modern world with the United States, TSL Earth maps offer a unique challenge to players, with unique features and the best strategic considerations that distinguish them from other map types.

True Start Location Earth maps use geographical data to provide an accurate representation of the Earth’s continents, oceans, and landforms. This level of realism creates a heightened sense of immersion and provides players with a more authentic historical experience.

Several key features distinguish TSL Earth maps from other map types:

  1. Real-world locations: Each civilization starts in its historical location, allowing players to simulate alternative historical scenarios and rewrite the course of human history.
  2. Geographical accuracy: The map’s geography closely mirrors that of the actual Earth, featuring accurate coastlines, mountain ranges, rivers, and resource distribution so this adds an extra layer of strategic depth, as players must navigate familiar terrain and consider the historical implications of their actions.
  3. Immersive gameplay: The combination of real-world geography and true starting locations creates a unique gameplay experience that appeals to history enthusiasts and Civilization fans alike.
  4. Custom scenarios: TSL Earth maps are often used as a foundation for custom scenarios, enabling players to explore “what-if” situations and alternative historical timelines.

9. The Splintered Fractal

Splintered Fractal maps civ 6
Fractal maps with some splinters [image by us]
Map  Description 
Splintered Fractals  A very random map that frequently creates islands and thin, snaky continents

The Splintered Fractal map is a unique and challenging, possibly the best map in Gathering Storm expansion, one of the best expansions the game got. This map script generates a fractured landmass that encourages the use of canals and tunnels, adding a layer of strategic depth to the game.

Here are some of the key features of Splintered fractal, one of the best map types:

  1. Fractured landmasses: Splintered Fractal maps generate irregular landmasses with narrow strips of land, isthmuses, and chokepoints. This creates an unpredictable and complex terrain that will challenge even experienced players.
  2. Emphasis on canals and tunnels: With fractured landmasses, the construction of canals and tunnels becomes essential to connect your cities and facilitate trade and military movement.
  3. Diverse terrain: The Splintered Fractal map features a variety of terrain types, including mountains, hills, forests, and marshes, providing opportunities for strategic city placement and resource utilization.

10. Primordial

Primordial map Civ 6
A dynamic and challenging map [image captured by eXputer]
Map  Description 
Primordial  A primitive globe with erratic continents and islands. Volcanoes and additional coastal lowlands create more unstable situations 

Primordial is another exciting and challenging map type introduced in Gathering Storm expansion and is one of the best map types. This map script offers a unique gameplay experience, marked by extreme conditions and an emphasis on natural disasters.

With increased volcanic activity and a higher frequency of other environmental events, the Primordial map presents players with the opportunity to navigate a treacherous and ever-changing landscape as they guide their civilization to greatness.

Below are some of the notable features of the Primordial map type:

  1. Volatile Terrain: The most notable feature of Primordial maps is the abundance of volcanoes and geothermal fissures scattered across the landscape.
    • These geological wonders pose a threat to nearby cities and units, as volcanic eruptions can cause significant damage and hinder the growth of adjacent tiles.
    • However, once the eruption subsides, the surrounding tiles will receive significant boosts to their yields, making them highly productive.
  2. Extreme Weather: Primordial maps also exhibit more frequent and severe weather events, such as storms, droughts, and floods.
    • These events can damage or destroy infrastructure, hinder unit movement, and impact city growth.
    • While they can be challenging to manage, some of these events also provide opportunities to capitalize on increased yields or strategic advantages.
  3. Varying Landmasses: The landmasses on Primordial maps can vary from large continents to smaller island chains, offering diverse terrain for players to explore and settle.
    • This variety encourages players to adapt their strategies and consider land and naval warfare.

11. Seven Seas

7 seas map civ6
Navigating the oceans [image credits: eXputer]
Map  Description 
Seven Seas Many large water bodies with surrounding land. Islands can be found in these waters 

The Seven Seas is one of the best map types, with an exciting and challenging option for players who enjoy a mix of land and naval warfare, exploration, and diverse expansion opportunities. This map type features seven interconnected oceans, each surrounded by its own distinct landmass, making it one of the most unique, strategically demanding, and among the best map types.

  • The Seven Seas map type is characterized by its seven large oceans, which act as the focal points of the map.
  • These oceans are interconnected by various waterways, allowing for extensive naval exploration and warfare throughout the map.
  • The landmasses surrounding each ocean differ in size, shape, and resource distribution, offering a diverse range of opportunities for players to expand their empires.
  • This map type promotes a balanced gameplay experience, as players must focus on both naval and land-based strategies to succeed.
  • The interconnected oceans provide plenty of opportunities for naval battles, while the surrounding landmasses offer ample room for expansion and terrestrial warfare.

The unique layout of the Seven Seas map type also encourages exploration, as players must navigate the seas to discover new lands, resources, and civilizations. This map type is especially suited for civilizations and leaders with strong naval units, bonuses, or abilities, such as Queen Victoria of England or Harald Hardrada of Norway.

12. Modded Maps

YnAMP map civ 6
Expand your Civilization’s horizons [image by us]
Map  Description 
Modded Created by players, require mods installation

As expansive as the base game is, modded map types are one of the best map types, offering the best chance for players to explore, conquer, and settle. Created by dedicated fans and modders, these custom maps provide new challenges and immersive experiences, allowing you to delve deeper into the world of Civilization. Following are Popular modded maps and their creators:

  • YnAMP (Yet (not) Another Maps Pack) by Gedemon. This popular map pack includes a vast selection of maps, from Earth maps with true start locations to completely fictional worlds. Some of its most notable maps are “Greatest Earth Map” and “Terra Incognita,” which provide a new level of realism and immersion.
  • Detailed Worlds by Leugi. Detailed Worlds is a mod that adds a collection of maps with a focus on realistic geography, climate, and resource distribution.
    • The maps in this pack are perfect for players who want a more authentic representation of Earth’s continents.
  • CIVITAS City-States. Expanded by p0kiehl and CIVITAS, while not strictly a map pack, this mod adds new custom city-states to the game, with each featuring unique bonuses and unique units.
    • This mod enhances the gameplay experience by diversifying the interactions between civilizations and city-states.
  • PerfectWorld 6 by bane_. PerfectWorld 6 is an advanced map generation script that creates highly detailed and realistic maps using complex algorithms to simulate realistic climate, terrain, and resource distribution.
    • If you’re looking for a map that offers a natural and organic feel, PerfectWorld 6 is worth checking out.
  • Ring World by Lime. This map by Lime is handcrafted and meticulously designed with unique concepts and challenges, featuring a massive central ocean surrounded by a ring of continents.

Factors To Consider When Choosing A Map:

  1. Gameplay preferences: Consider whether you prefer land-based or naval warfare, exploration, colonization, or balanced gameplay.
  2. Civilization choice: Some civilizations excel on specific map types due to their unique abilities, units, or infrastructure.
  3. Challenge level: Different map types can offer unique challenges that test your adaptability and strategic skills.
  4. Familiarity: If you’re new to the game, choosing a more familiar map type like Continents may be easier to grasp. However, experienced players may prefer the unpredictability of Fractal or the challenges of modded maps.
  5. Customizability: Some map types offer more customization options, allowing you to tailor the map to your preferences.

Pros And Cons of Each Map

Each map type has its own Pros and Cons. Below is a summarized version:

Map TypeProsCons
ContinentsFamiliar gameplay, balanced mix of land and waterLimited strategic options for naval-focused civilizations, crowded starts
PangeaLarge landmass for land-based warfare, encourages aggressionLimited strategic options for naval-focused civilizations, crowded starts
Island PlatesBalanced mix of land and water, encourages diverse strategiesSome islands may be too small for viable cities, imbalanced starts
Fractal MapsUnpredictable terrain, challenges players to adaptImbalanced starts, difficult terrain for expansion
Terra MapsIncentivizes exploration and colonizationSlower early game, uneven resource distribution
TSL Earth MapsReal-world geography, historical immersionCivilization advantages or disadvantages, crowded starts
Four-Leaf Clover and Six-Armed SnowflakeBalanced starts, encourages competitive playMirrored landmasses, less emphasis on exploration
Splintered FractalUnique terrain, challenging gameplayImbalanced starts, difficult terrain for expansion
PrimordialMore extreme conditions, dynamic gameplayHigh risk of natural disasters, imbalanced starts
Seven SeasPromotes naval strategies, mix of land and naval warfareLess focus on land-based strategies, uneven resource distribution
Modded MapsUnique and diverse gameplay experiencesCompatibility issues, quality varies by modder

Conclusion

In conclusion, Civ 6 offers a diverse array of map types, each providing unique challenges, opportunities, and gameplay experiences. From the unpredictability of Fractal maps to the classic feel of Continents maps, players can immerse themselves in the rich and varied world of Civilization 6.

By understanding the distinct features and advantages of each map type, players can make informed choices that cater to their playstyle, strategies, and even the strengths of their chosen civilization.

This not only enhances the overall gameplay experience but also allows players to test their skills and devise new tactics that suit the challenges presented by the chosen map. By exploring the various map types available, players can embark on countless new adventures, forge new strategies, and ultimately achieve victory in the ever-evolving landscape of Civilization 6.

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Saqib is a Senior Guides writer at eXputer with multiple years of writing experience. His love for RPGs, Roblox, and mobile games knows no bounds. In his free time, Saqib is on yet another adventure with Roblox or free roaming in RPG. Saqib has completed a Journalism degree and worked for notable gaming sites including DualShockers and Gamepur. You can follow Saqib's gaming activity on his Steam profile.
Experience: 3+ Years || Education: Bachelor's in Accounting || Previously Worked for DualShockers & Gamepur || Published 200+ Guides

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