In Civilization 5, when you conquer a city, you have a few options:

  • Annex the city, it becomes a normal part of your Civ.
  • Make the city a puppet.
  • Raze the city, destroying it. (Only an option for non-capitals)
  • Liberate the city, returning it to whoever first owned it. (If it had a previous owner)

Making a city a puppet makes it a partial member of your civ: it produces gold, science, culture, but you do not control what it produces, nor does it lower your happiness as much as normal.

So, when the city is a puppet, is it affected by any of the following?

  • Your civilization's social policies
  • Your civilization's golden ages
  • Your civilization's World Wonders
  • Your civilization's special trait
  • Any other civilization wide effects

Finding this out is difficult, because when the city is a puppet you can not even look at the city screen to see what the citizens are working!

For a very concrete example, one of the social policies gives +production to each city. Do puppet cities get this extra production?

2 Answers 2


Although bwarner's answer was helpful as always, no one verified beyond "I think so" that puppet cities are affected by each of the civilization wide effects, so I did some testing and:

Yes, puppet cities are affected normally by all civilization-wide effects.

I can't verify that there are no exceptions, but I verified at least one of each of the things I was concerned about...

The Testing

Civilization Special Trait

I loaded up France on easy, and went about conquering. Japan fell, giving me Kyoto to play with. As soon as I conquered the city and took it as a puppet, it was producing 2 culture. This matches perfectly with France's ability, so CHECK!

More Test Setup

Having acquired my victim, I setup the test: social policy ready, golden-age ready, and wonder ready all on the same turn! (Save file available upon request, whenever I get around to it after that.)

Before alt text alt text

Social Policy

I enacted Liberty->Republic, which gives +1 production/city. That matches, so CHECK! alt text alt text alt text

Golden Age

I already had culture working for me, so I started the golden age by enacting the social policy Piety->Reformation. Clearly shows an increase in both gold and production, CHECK! alt text alt text alt text

World Wonder

If you take a look at all of my cities from the same turn, you can see Orleans is about to finish the Sistine Chapel, which gives +33% culture/city. I went to the next turn, and without any growth or buildings completing, the after shows increased culture on Kyoto. (Lyon also started with 7 culture and ended with 9 as well, so the rounding definitely matches.) CHECK! alt text alt text

Everything checks out. I suppose puppets really are just normal cities that you don't control. I would still love to hear if anyone finds any exceptions!

  • Very convincing. A puppet probably just works exactly like a normal city that's been put on Gold Focus, except for the addition of some unhappiness.
    – Joren
    Commented Sep 8, 2011 at 17:20

I believe the answer is yes. You can see on the main screen how long it takes for the puppet city to complete their current production. If you trigger a golden age, you will see it go down. Given the right situation you should be able to verify the other ones in this way as well, but I'm guessing they all work the same. You should also be able to verify that you get the benefit of wonders that already exist in the puppet city in your other cities (if you aren't sure which wonders are there, just look at the map carefully and you should be able to see them).

  • Yeah, that's certainly a way to check. I was hoping someone had already noticed. If no one posts concrete info I may check this myself tonight and report back. Commented Sep 27, 2010 at 20:57

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