City building is crucial to winning Civilization VI games. There are numerous buildings you can add to your cities by unlocking their required techs and civics. Buildings provide various city effects that will also boost your civilization’s overall yields for science, culture, gold, and faith. Some city buildings are more essential than others. These are some of the best buildings in Civilization VI all players should build irrespective of victory condition targets.
1. Factory (Industrialization)
City production is important to all victory conditions in Civilization VI. Therefore, Factory is one of the most essential buildings to unlock and add to your cities ASAP. This building provides a +3 production boost to all cities within six tiles of the district it’s built in. Unlike the Workshop, Factory’s production boost isn’t limited to one city. Building a couple of these can feasibly give four or five of your cities a notable productivity boost, which will enable you to build units and other buildings more quickly.
The Power Plant is the most advanced production building in Civilization VI. However, the +4 production boost that provides is only marginally better than Factory’s +3 increase. The Power Plant’s maintenance cost of three is one higher, and it also takes longer to build it. At any rate, you’ll have to build a Factory to add a Power Plant to a city. So, Factory is the more essential building.
2. Stock Exchange (Economics)
A healthy economy will always give you a better chance of winning a Civilization VI game. Stock Exchange is the most advanced Commercial hub building in Civ 6 that provides a +7 gold yield increase for a city that includes it. That’s a big boost, and you can double that effect by selecting the Free Trade Policy Card. With that card selected, the Stock Exchange provides a massive +14 gold yield increase for a city. Furthermore, Stock Exchange has no maintenance cost that offsets the gold increase it provides.
To add a Stock Exchange to a city, you’ll need to build a Market and Bank at its Commercial Hub first. Those economic buildings provide smaller gold yield increases. Collectively, all three buildings can increase a city’s gold yield by +30 with the Free Trade Policy selected. Therefore, Commercial Hub districts with Stock Exchanges can cover a large proportion of your civilization’s building maintenance costs.
3. Military Academy (Military Science)
This is the most advanced Encampment district building in Civilization 6. The +25 percent combat experience bonus this building gives to all land units recruited at its parent city undoubtedly makes Military Academy very appealing for players going for Domination victories. This building also enables faster army and corps training in its city.
However, Military Academy’s +3 city production effect makes it a good building for all players. It also increases production in a city by +1 for each Specialist within its Encampment district. If that’s not enough, the Third Alternative and Military Research Policy cards activate additional +4 gold and +1 science bonus effects for Military Academy buildings. Thus, Military Academy buildings can provide notable productivity and economic benefits for civilizations, boost science research, and strengthen armies.
4. Amphitheater (Drama and Poetry)
The Amphitheater is an essential building for the Culture Victory condition that provides Great Writer points and a couple of slots for Great Works. Even if you’re not going for a Culture Victory, however, it’s still important to build Amphitheaters to increase your civilization’s cultural yields. Amphitheater provides a +2 culture yield boost for the city it’s in, which can be doubled to a +4 boost with the Grand Opera Policy Card. Building a good number of these can notably increase a civilization’s culture yields, which will reduce the time it takes to unlock civics.
5. Seaport (Electricity)
The Seaport Harbor district building is a great addition to any coastal city. This building provides a +2 gold boost and an additional +2 gold boost for each coastal tile a city has. For example, it will provide a combined +10 gold boost for five coastal tiles owed by the city it’s built at. Therefore, Seaport can give coastal cities’ economies a notable boost; and it doesn’t have any maintenance cost.
Aside from gold, Seaport increases food yields, which boosts city growth. The building gives a +2 food boost for cities that include it. It also provides further +1 food yield bonuses for each Specialist within its Harbor district.
This building has additional bonus effects. It provides +1 housing, Great Admiral points, and enables faster Fleet and Armada training. With the Military Research Policy Card selected, Seaport also generates a +1 science output bonus for cities you build it at.
6. University (Education)
The University is a Medieval Era building for Campus districts that provides a substantial +4 science yield effect. This is among the most important buildings to add to your cities given the big impact it has on boosting science research and unlocking technologies more quickly. It can have an even greater impact when combined with the Rationalism Policy Card, which increases science output at Campus buildings by 100 percent. Therefore, Rationalism doubles the science yield output increase the University provides from four to eight.
Research Lab is the most advanced Campus district building in Civilization VI. However, its +5 science yield effect isn’t that much better; and it lacks University’s +1 housing bonus. Furthermore, players will have unlocked most of the game’s technologies by the time they get a chance to add Research Labs to cities. As such, Research Lab isn’t so essential to add to your cities during the late game.
7. Granary (Pottery)
The Granary is the best first building to add to all settlements established during the early game because of its population growth effects. Granary buildings provide a +1 food and +2 housing increase for the cities that include them. Those effects kick-start population growth in new settlements. It’s especially important to build Granary buildings at settlements that lack freshwater supplies. As the Granary has no maintenance cost and is very quick to build, it’s a building you should add to all, or at least most, of your cities.
Those are some of the best buildings in Civilization VI that provide considerable economic, productivity, scientific, cultural, and population growth benefits for cities that include them. Whatever victory condition you’re playing for, make sure you build plenty of those buildings.