In Civilization 5, there are City-States scattered around the world. You can bully them for lunch money, ally with them, and declare war on them. If you conquer enough City-States, you'll eventually persuade them all to band together and declare permanent war on you.

If a City-State that declares permanent war on you is then captured by another civilization, and you liberate it, does it end the permanent war? Or do City-States never forgive and never forget?


3 Answers 3


According to the Civ 5 wiki:

Liberating a City-State will immediately start an alliance with the liberator and give the liberator a lot of Influence (this will still decrease each turn, though, and by going under the limit, the alliance will then be cancelled).

This leads me to believe that regardless of the permanent war status of the other city states, a liberated city state should in theory ally with the liberator.

That being said, city-state total war is a unique situation, and I think the only way to truly know would be to test it yourself.


I don't think you can get a Permanent War in Brave New World. I really tried to cause one: I went to war against the same city-state on three different occasions. The third time, I took the city-state, then went on to capture four other city-states to boot, to keep one of my opponents from a diplomatic victory. Then I gave all of the city-states to another opponent, who promptly liberated them.

The end result? The resting-point of most city-states' influence was 20 points lower than normal. (This penalty was applied one city-state at a time, depending on whether that specific city-state was annoyed at me.)

So either Permanent War is much harder to get than it was in earlier versions of Civilization V, or it's impossible. (Still TODO: become a warmongering menace to city-states and capture all but one; then see if that last, cowering victim declares Permanent War.)


While I'm not 100% sure on that specific set of circumstances. I do know that liberating a city state does generate a fair amount of good will with them. I guess there's only one way to find out. The worst that will happen is you'll take the city state back in a few turns.

  • Hey - welcome to Arqade. While it's always nice when new users get involved, this kind of answer isn't really appropriate for the format. It doesn't provide a definitive answer, it doesn't give a source, and makes questionable use of an absolute statement ('the worst that can happen'). Please try and provide actual answers in the future.
    – shanodin
    Aug 1, 2014 at 14:18
  • Well delete the answer if it's that questionable.
    – grturner
    Aug 1, 2014 at 14:58

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