Resources are special commodities found in limited quantities on the map. When a resource is "worked" it provides a bonus for your empire; this is accomplished either through constructing an improvement with a Worker (on land) or expending a Work Boat (for sea tiles). Bonuses vary from increased yield (production, food, etc.) to a number of units of Iron, Uranium, or some other strategic resources necessary for producing specific units and buildings.
Resources are extremely important in the game, and the main reason for expansion and territorial wars. Plan your early expansion carefully to take control of as many resources as you can!
Civilization V contains three kinds of resources: bonus resources, strategic resources and luxury resources. This article explains their differences and lists the resources of each category.
Strategic and luxury resources are special in the sense that they include not only tile potential benefits, but also trading gameplay effects and benefits. All of them are counted across your empire, for trading and strategic purposes. To gain access and add the count of a particular strategic or luxury resource to your trade network, you need to have it in your territory, and construct the necessary improvement on it. You don't need to work it to have access to its special benefits! You do, however, need to work it to access its tile potential benefits.
Settling a city on top of a luxury or strategic resource tile gives the strategic benefits as soon as you have the appropriate technology for improving it. It also gives additional production, food and gold it usually provides right to your city tile, meaning that you'll always be using these benefits (since the city tile is always worked). You won't be able to use the potential benefits of Improvements built on the resource, but you WILL be able to build the bonus city buildings related to the resource and their bonus will apply (e.g. you can build a Stone Works if you settle near a Stone resource, and it will give your city tile an additional Production for Quarry resources).
These resources are neither luxury nor strategic in any senses, and not shared across your empire and neither can they be traded. Instead, they provide additional output for the tile they are on when worked, especially when improved. Unlike the strategic and luxury resources, they have to be worked by a nearby city to receive their output bonus, so plan accordingly. Also, several buildings can be constructed in their nearby city to further increase their yields.
|Bonus resources||Output bonus|
There are also buildings which increase Bonus resources' output bonuses:
- Granary - +1 Food per Wheat, Bananas and Deer resource
- Lighthouse - +1 Food per Fish resource (stacks with the general +1 Food to all Ocean tiles nearby; additional +1 Production to all Sea Resources in BNW)
- Stone Works - +1 Production per Marble and Stone resource
- Stable - +1 Production per Horses, Sheep and Cattle resource
Strategic resources are those that are of economic and military importance for your empire. Certain military units and buildings require a strategic resource before they can be built. For example, a Horseman requires 1 Horses resource, while a Factory requires 1 Coal resource. If these objects are removed from a civilization's control — whether by losing a unit in battle, gifting it to a City-State, losing a resource's nearest city, or any other means — the strategic resource consumed by the object is released for future use; strategic resources never actually leave play. On the other hand, if the civilization loses access to some of the strategic resources they are currently using, and find themselves using more than they're producing or trading, then military units depending on the resource in question will fight with a large combat penalty, until the situation is remedied.
Each improved strategic resource tile provides a certain quantity (varying from one resource to the other, and also from one source to the other) of that resource to the empire that controls it, regardless of whether it is worked by a city or not. Note that they also provide output bonuses, which are useful only if the tile IS worked. Unused strategic resources may be traded to other empires.
|Strategic resources||Output bonus|
Luxury resources are fancy goods that your more wealthy citizens enjoy. Their practical effect is to provide additional Happiness - on a Standard map, +4 per each type of which your empire has at least one count. Each improved luxury resource tile provides one count of that resource to the empire that controls it. If an empire possesses more than one count of the same luxury resource, the happiness effect is the same as possessing only one, so they can trade extra counts for Gold or other things.
Again, you don't need to work an improved luxury resource tile in order to gain the resource, but you DO need to work it to gain its output bonuses. Luxury resources may be traded to other empires, if they're produced by YOU. However, in the event that you've gained them via trading or from a City-State, you can't trade them away.
|Luxury resources||Output bonus|
Some buildings also increase the bonuses of luxury resources:
- Harbor (vanilla and G&K): +1 Production to all Sea Resources (This bonus is transferred to the Lighthouse in BNW.)
- Mint: +2 Gold per Gold and Silver resource
- Monastery: +1 Culture per Incense and Wine resource (additional +1 Faith in G&K; also, the Monastery can only be built via a particular religious Belief)
- Seaport: +1 Production and Gold to all Sea Resources