Officially, the Mac OS X version of Civilization V does not support mods. However, from common sense, some discussions I've found online, and Aspyr's poor track record, I'm guessing it is indeed possible to enable the mod browser and mod playing, at least for some mods.

So, is it possible? And if it is, how?

  • 1
    I'm no expert, but I imagine mods won't work with OS X because, by name, mods are modifications of the game binary. Any mods will have been made for the Windows binary, and not the Mac...
    – Jasarien
    Jan 12, 2012 at 20:44
  • 4
    @Jasarien, mods in Civ5 are a combination of XML, SQL, and Lua scripting. I don't believe they are compiled so much as they are interpreted. Aspyr might have excluded these components when they ported the game, but if they're present, it seems like it should be possible to run the same Windows mods on a Mac.
    – agent86
    Jan 12, 2012 at 20:58
  • Ok, in that case, disregard my comment ;)
    – Jasarien
    Jan 13, 2012 at 9:19
  • If my Mac was capable of playing this game, I'd investigate for you... sadly it is not :(
    – agent86
    Jan 16, 2012 at 1:27
  • @StrixVaria I agree with you on Aspyr. In this case, they intentionally hid the Mods button so they didn't have to worry about supporting Mods on Mac. Lazy, just Lazy.
    – Adanion
    Jan 18, 2012 at 14:42

3 Answers 3


The Mods button is disabled in the MainMenu.lua file. To re-enable this button you will need to navigate to the MainMenu.lua file, open it with a text editor (like TextWrangler) and comment out line 33.

~/Library/Application Support/Steam/SteamApps/common/sid meier's civilization v/assets/UI/FrontEnd/MainMenu.lua

Assuming you use Steam

The line is:

Controls.ModsButton:SetHide( true );

To comment it out simply add two hyphens like this:

-- Controls.ModsButton:SetHide( true );

This should re-enable the Mods button on the Main Menu.

Some mods work and some do not, it seems rather hit or miss. If you have a xxxx.Civ5Mod file use something like Ez7z to expand the file which will create a folder that you can then put in your MODS folder which should be similar to this: (Depending on which version of Civil you have)

~/Library/Application Support/Sid Meier's Civilization 5/MODS/ or ~/Documents/Aspyr/Sid Meier's Civilization 5/MODS/ depending on whether you have changed the setting to use the Library instead of Documents.

NOTE: If you are running OS 10.7 (Lion) then Users/<your_name>/Library/ is hidden in Finder. Hold the Alt key down and select the Finder's Go menu. You will see Library as one of the options in that menu.

NOTE 2: Currently, every time you download a new patch for the game it overwrites your MainMenu.lua back to default so you will have to comment out line 33 again.

  • 1
    This should go without saying but just to be safe, always verify that the Mod you are trying to use is legitimate and working as intended before you try and use it.
    – Adanion
    Jan 17, 2012 at 22:37
  • I have this same issue however when I navigate to that folder i do not have MainMenu.lua instead I have MainMenu.xml which doesnt contain much. Can you help?
    – Alex
    Jul 12, 2012 at 18:28
  • 1
    Just a note, with Gods & Kings installed, the whole hierarchy has changed. So unfortunately, this solution no longer works.
    – Guillochon
    Aug 15, 2012 at 17:46
  • 2
    On G&K, you need to edit a different file: Library/Application Support/Steam/SteamApps/common/sid meier civilization v/Civilization V : Gods & Kings/Contents/Home/assets/DLC/Expansion/UI/FrontEnd/MainMenu.lua
    – tog22
    Apr 10, 2013 at 6:32
  • 2
    In Brave New World, it's ~/Library/Application Support/Steam/SteamApps/common/Sid Meier's Civilization V/Civilization V.app/Contents/Home/Assets/UI/FrontEnd/MainMenu.lua. Feb 26, 2014 at 3:20

I was having trouble since I had G&K but I solved it.

I had to update a MainMenu.lua file in a different location than the one given above. Try to one at Library/Application Support/Steam/SteamApps/common/sid meier civilization v/Civilization V : Gods & Kings/Contents/Home/assets/DLC/Expansion/UI/FrontEnd/MainMenu.lua

When you get to the application Civilization V : Gods & Kings, you still have to right click on it and then go to "Show Package Contents" to get the "Contents" folder.

Once you get to the MainMenu.lua file, follow the directions on editing the it and you should be good to go. I'm on Mountain Lion 10.8.1

  • As per this duplicate, and my own research, there is no MainMenu.lua at that location (at least now). With Gods & Kings, you edit ~/Library/Application Support/Steam/SteamApps/common/Sid Meier's Civilization V/Civilization V: Gods & Kings/Contents/Home/assets/UI/FrontEnd/MainMenu.lua
    – au revoir
    Sep 6, 2013 at 4:47
  • With Civilization V: Gods & Kings being an application, so you have to right-click it and choose "Show Package Contents" in order to get into the directory structure.
    – au revoir
    Sep 6, 2013 at 4:48

Alright, I had trouble with this one but I think I just blew the lid off it.

In Mac OS Lion when you go to the ~/Library/Application Support/Steam/SteamApps/common/sid meier's civilization v/ folder there's no "assets" folder. All that appears is Civilization.app. You need to right click on Civilization.app and in that menu hit "show package contents"

You'll then see the application folder's parts. Then follow this path:


Then edit the MainMenu.lua file as instructed above and you should be good to go!

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