The Authentic Colonization - A Mod For Civ IV:Colonization

First off, a big thank you to Greybriar for posting about this over at

I’ve been playing with this mod all morning and it improves the base game in almost every way:

More leaders (leaders now have 3 traits instead of 2)
More maps
Improved graphics with realistic terrain
New victory conditions
Colonies now start as a single outpost - every building has to be built from scratch (more realistic)
Random events
New Founding Fathers

Long story short - it turns what was a bland vanilla game into something worth reinstalling and playing.

You can get the mod here:

Thank you for the link colonization is a game that I always had on crappy net books for rainy vacation days and the like. The official civ4 one was just meh. If I can rip myself away from my new necro in gw2 I will definetly check it out. I can install it on a civ4 vanilla or do I need to install all the expansions (I have them so no big deal)

Wolff it looks like this is for the game Civ4:Colonization which is a distinct and separate game from Civ4.

Cool I am pretty sure I have that as well :D

Yes, it is for the stand-alone Colonization. Also, you have to make sure your copy is patched up to 1.01f (the last official patch, I believe).

The mod page doesn’t offer a lot of information, but skimming over the 16 page PDF manual, it looks like they’ve addressed the two major shortcomings of Colonization: the Royal Expeditionary Force scaled too readily with colony size, and it was much better to buy horses and guns from Europe than produce them yourself. The manual mentions changes to both issues.

Civ 4: Colonization is still $20 on Steam, which is ridiculous. Fortunately I found my copy lying around, but if you don’t have it, better to wait for it to be 75% off or more during one of the sales. It’s also included in Civ 4 Complete.

This looks very cool, thanks guys! Now I should finally give Colonization a whirl. :)

Man, I have such fond memories of the original. The art style combined with the midi soundtrack provided tons and tons of atmosphere. Possibly more than any of the Civ games. I might have to pick this up at some point.

Thanks for the acknowledgement, tgb, but TonyJudt was the one who brought this mod to my attention when he posted:

The TAC mod certainly has breathed new life into Sid Meier’s Civilization IV: Colonization.

Glad to see this thread! I’ve been on a gaming kick lately specifically about this time period and I’ve been meaning to jump back into some Colonization.

However, I really liked the original Civ IV: Colonization, and I don’t recall feeling that it was “a bland vanilla game”, as tgb claims in the original post. I also don’t recall minding the two points Gus raises from the mod’s documentation about the REF scaling or purchasing guns and horses from Europe. Can anyone who’s banged on this a little address whether this is worth installing for someone who already likes the game?


EDIT: Actually, never mind. Reading up on it, I think I’m cool with unmodded Colonization for the time being. But I am curious why tgb calls it “bland vanilla”, though. I always thought Colonization IV had an enormous amount of personality, from the theming to the moment-to-moment gameplay to the overarching structure of each game.

The REF issue means that by and large, the more you expand your colony, the harder it will be to defeat the REF. Newer cities naturally lag behind your older ones. As you add cities you’re increasing the REF size by more than the incremental economic improvement.

Thus, the ideal strategy turns out not to expand at all. There were people at Civ Fanatics who demonstrated that you can win in the early 1500’s by building a single city and going straight for independence with no attempt at building infrastructure.

Since the REF equation is (size = K * total liberty bells generated + J), there’s a simple fix - make the starting size of the REF (J) larger, and the increment for total liberty bells (K) smaller. Presumably that’s what TAC does. I know Age of Discovery did this.

The guns-and-horses thing was less important, but meant that you really didn’t want to hire blacksmiths or gunsmiths, ever. You can buy tools from Europe for the same price as the raw materials. Guns are more expensive than tools, but it’s more efficient to sell other goods to Europe and buy guns than to convert tools to guns.

This is from a bit over 4 years ago, so it’s easier to quote what I wrote back then, when it was very fresh in my mind:

Blacksmiths generally yield nothing. I think that’s a major design loophole, usually you don’t have any use for them until the revolution, when Elections can stop you from buying more Tools from Europe.

Gunsmiths aren’t as bad, but they have sub-standard incomes for comparable outlay in infrastructure. And that’s if you count the buy price for Guns, not the sell price.
Re-reading what I’d written then, I’d forgotten that the vanilla education system is screwy. It gets harder and harder to train new specialists in school - I seem to recall that education worked much more sensibly in the original Colonization, but my memories of that are very vague now. I don’t know if TAC addresses this.

EDIT: Yes, it does.

Tom -

“Bland” may have been a little strong, but the game never felt particularly immersive to me. Just the random events and the quests (i.e. be the first European power to find a Western route to China) add a lot.

I’ve been playing around with it for several hours and found it worth the effort. Why don’t you install it and give it a try? It’s just a mod that doesn’t alter any of the vanilla game’s files. Then you can either use it, uninstall it, or forget it.

Ugg can’t declare war early…there goes that world.

Anyone get this installing nicely on steam? I have to load the mod separately and I don’t think all the maps are there.

I actually liked the unmodded (but patched up) Civ 4: Colonization and played it to death (much like I did with the original Colonization).

About local production versus buying things from Europe: I never saw the point in the latter (aside from early game). You could set up towns to produce hundreds of muskets per turn, for free, where as you would have to continually generate income to buy them from Europe. The same applied to Tools.

I never found the REF to be a problem in the unmodded version either - your cannon/dragoon production always easily outpaced the rise in the REF, to the point that even on the highest difficulty level the King stood little chance of winning a war with you. It kinda become too easy after a while and I had to invent special challenges, like win the war of independence with a huge navy (and a token land force) by intercepting the King’s ships before they could unload their troops. Or to only win by using Cannons - flood the King with them Russian T-34 style, losing most in the process.

But even that got old after a while. So this mod offered a fresh take on an old favorite.

I have to do the same thing, and have not found a way around it.

It doesn’t help that the readme file is in German.

The maps are scenarios.

Ah thank you all ended up winning my first game on conquistador last night. Unfortunately in many ways I think I prefer the old original though I will play a few more games to see how it goes. Mostly I feel hemmed in by the other European settlers to soon.

I would like to recommend the religion and revolution mod.

I would like to recommend the religion and revolution mod.