Sid Meier's Civilization V

Sid Meier's Civilization V

235 ratings
Basic Rush - Take out an enemy early on - Any Civ - Prince Difficulty
By Jachymor
A simple yet effective guide to take out an enemy civ early on in the game. This frees up space for you to expand and gives you a city with 2 guaranteed luxury resources. The rush is independend from strategic resources and your civ aswell.
0. What is a "Rush" and can I eat it?
A Rush, or Rushing, describes a strategy where you try to finish or accomplish something really fast. By rushing you neglect most other areas and concentrate your resources on one goal - and with that goal you bring yourself in an overall better position than your enemies are.

This guide will focus on a basic rush to take on an enemy civ very early on. This way, you take out an potential threat that occupies land, resources, city states, world wonders, religions... I guess you get what I am after here.

This rush will focus on grabbing a lot of military units early on, thus weakening your economic. But, as soon as the basics for the rush are set, you can start claiming your luxury resources and science buildings. But, first things first...
1. Which Civ do I need to rush?
This basic rush makes the choice rather easy - take the Civ you like or a random one. The rush requires Warriors and Archers only. No special ressources or traits required. BUT! If you have improved Archers or Warriors, if won't hurt the effort. For example:

Atlastists (Mayas) - Can be build right from the start, freeing up important science time. You will not need to research Archery and can go for Animal Husbandry first for a shot on horses.

Jaguar (Aztec) - Just plain better than the warrior, a lot more sturdy AND proves to be useful against enemy civs with lots of jungle and forests around.

Pathfinder (Shoshone) - At first, the Pathfinder looks like a scout on steroids. He is as strong as the warrior and ignores terrain cost. His upgrade path makes him more durable, thus choosing Pathfinder over Warriors to rush is a legit option.

Maori Warriors (Polynesia) - The -10% helps fighting early defence units of the enemy.
2. Build Order
The Build Order describes, well, what to build in which order to pull this off without delay. Feel free to adjust it at your own responsebility.


1. Archery (to get access to Archers if needed)
2. Mining or Animal Husbandry into Trapping or Sailing (for nearby luxury ressources that don't require Calendar
3. Go for Mathematics (Courthouse will make the new city workable without too much unhappyness)

The rest depends on your luxuries and playstyle for the lategame.


1. Scout (get those juicy ruins)
2. Monument (get those juicy policies)
3. Archer/Warrior (from here, start building up your army of 5)
4. Archer/Warrior
5. Archer/Warrior
6. Archer/Warrior
7. Worker/Workboat

Choosing your army depends on your scouting and luck. If you get a free archer by a ruin, you need to train one less. If your enemy is in a wide open field, take 3 archers. If he has a heavy terrain city, get more warriors. If you are lucky on technologies and you know your enemy will be hard to overcome, go for Spearmen. Don't follow Build Orders blindly if you feel like it will not work as planned, feel free to adjust - or restart. Restarting is part of the game as you enter higher levels.

Hint: If you have the money, buy any unit you still lack. Time is of the essence here!


1. Honor Starter (have more fun punching barbarians)
2. Warrior Code (grants you a General (+15% Damage) and makes your warriors pop out faster)
3. Discipline (another 15% Damage for your units as they storm the city)

After that, you have the most important policies of Order. Military Caste is a useful policy when aquiring new cities, as your conquering unit will decrease the unhappiness produced by the city. Choose Policies you will need for after the rush or finish Honor for its gold bonus finisher.
3. How to pull off the Rush
At the beginning of the game, check your surroundings first. Move the Warrior on a hill first and lookout for luxury ressources. Salt, Copper, Gold and Silver are nice. Cows and Sheep are nice aswell. All fishy stuff is nice aswell, as are Furs, Deers and Boars. If you only have resources nearby that require plantations and quarries, it is up to you if you want them or not. I do not prefer them.

So, where do you place your settler? It is safe to settle on turn 2, so if you have a hill (with a resource) nearby, move on it first. The bonus early on will help your rushing efforts. Also, the hill grants 1 extra Production and extra Defence.

As your capital is found, let your Warrior scout the surroundings. Unlike a Scout, you want to move him manually in a wide circle around your base. The Scout you build will go and find the enemy civ you want to take on first. Do not let the Warrior die if possible, as you can use him for the rush.

Hint: When fighting barbarians, feel free to take the heal up promotion. Otherwise your Warrior will be occupied to long on one camp.

As you find your yet unsuspecting prey, scout around his borders. Find out if there are hills or forests that your units can use to cover from enemy counter attacks. Your archers want to be on hills, so they can fire over forests and jungles. Find a clear path for your melee troops to go in. If your prey suits your aggressive endeavors, move your army to his borders and prepare.

By the time you find the enemy, you should have a few units and maybe a general aswell. Move them to the border, place them where they can move in or attack instantly and wait for your whole army to arrive. As said before, 5 units will do the trick, plus a general. Usually the enemy borders aren't that spread out yet, so feel free to place your archers on hills just in attack range. Still, try to place them for your general to buff them all.

And now to the funny part - the sieging.
4. Take on the enemy Capital
Simply attacking it won't do the trick. Your Warriors should fortify in front of the enemy city and stay close to each other for Discipline to kick in. In the meantime, your Archers whittle the city down. If you have more Warrior, you can attack with them earlier, but not before it is about 50% - 40% down on life. Your Warrior will still take a bucket load of damage when they attack the enemy, so do not waste them too early. If the city is pretty low, you can start attack the enemy city. Warrior cannot take more than 2 attacks on a city, so plan accordingly. Use Heal promotion if available.

But wait, what is that? 2 Cities? D :
5. If the enemy has 2 or more cities...
Sometimes, the enemy Civ goes for a settler rush, giving him an early second city and thus additional productivity. Now you have to make a choice of priority:

1: Go for the enemy capital first. This way you take on the more difficult threat that you will keep and thus can provide beakup. Take care to not attack from the side where the second city is: Sometimes cities have overlapping attack radii, eleminating your soldiers before they can do vital damage.

After taking the Capital, heal up and go for the second city. It should be weaker than the original Capital now, due to lower population.

2: Go for the second city first. This is useful if the capital would be otherwise unreachable or defended by the second city. Also go for the city if it has 1 or more luxuries nearby. No need to settle for yourself if a city is already in place. But beware! Taking the second city first will alert the capital and an Archer might appear soon there, bringing an early end to your rush if you are unlucky.

6. I got him! ... And now?
When the city is taken, puppet it first. As soon as you have Mathematics ready AND a large surplus on happyness, annex and build the Courthouse. And from there you still have a whole world to conquer. Use the new city to its fullest potential. Before turn 70, you got 2 nice starting cities and 1 opponent less. Also, the enemy will fear you for a while, so make every turn from there count!
7. Video Guide!
And shameless self promotion. Have some cookies to it! : )

< >
Flip May 5 @ 12:40am 
> @OP never go for capital first. If a city is a capital it gives it extra defense so taking out the capital first, gives the other city he has left more defenses.

if you first go for his secondary city you'll give him time to build defences / a third city. However if you go for the capital first, his secondary city will probably not be developed enough to help defend his empire.
mvffinsandmilk Feb 13, 2014 @ 9:56am 
@Talon on Immortal/Deity victory ya the AI will start with more units, but if your spamming warriors (3-4) and rushing to catapults (2-3) you should be able to take out another civ

@OP never go for capital first. If a city is a capital it gives it extra defense so taking out the capital first, gives the other city he has left more defenses.
Lord_Weasel Feb 8, 2014 @ 1:36pm 
I'm Captain Ginyu!
TalonofWindspeak Nov 2, 2013 @ 5:10am 
Playing on the next level up this strategy doesn't work quite the same. By the time you find them they will have just as many units as you do. I find it best to build up a strike force and wait for them to form a new unprotected city ripe for the taking, then this strategy will work well. You need to be able to defend it though. Now if you form an ally of a state, allow your foes to take it then take if from them, allow them to take it again, take it right back, keep doing this you over and over, it's actually easy as they will be weak. You will end up with a number like 600 or so ally points. You don't have to put spies in there any more. This is easy way to get Diplomatic Victories at high levels in Civ 5.
Professor Scam Nov 1, 2013 @ 1:41pm 
thanks, helped me take out germany really quickly!
wooooooooooooooj Oct 29, 2013 @ 7:29am 
Took out Russia, China and Mongolia by Turn 82. Thanks.
htdang12 Oct 28, 2013 @ 8:59pm 
Insightful. And the comments in your video cracked me up. I can't stand being surrounded by jungles and forests, either, but you were a good sport to trudge through it.
Frenchiveruti Oct 27, 2013 @ 6:20pm 
It Worked for me, thanks!
I use the Aztecs for this.
fredbujo Oct 27, 2013 @ 5:08pm 
If you play with the Huns, rush for Bronze Working and train Rams. Bang!
Joe Jackson Oct 27, 2013 @ 3:55pm 
@PhxStriker a good offence is the best defense