Civilization V Customisation Wiki

The Rifleman is a Gunpowder unit available in the Industrial Era.


A rifle is a firearm designed to be fired from the shoulder. The inside of the barrel has "rifled" grooves designed to spin the projectile as it is fired, giving it greater range and accuracy than an unrifled projectile. The earliest attempts at rifled barrels in Europe occurred in the 15th century, but difficulties in manufacturing kept it from general use until the 19th. American frontiersmen had rifles in the American War of Independence. British and American skirmishers and scouts were equipped with rifled muskets during the Napoleonic Wars and the War of 1812, but the weapons' slower loading time kept them out of the hands of the regular infantry for some years further.

The invention of the "minie ball" greatly reduced loading time, and by the American Civil War rifled muskets were in use in all major European armies. By the end of the Civil War the rifled musket was rendered obsolete by the breech-loading repeating rifle, which had a firing rate of perhaps one shot a second (as fast as one could cock the lever and pull the trigger), compared to the muzzle-loading rifle's firing rate of perhaps 20 to 30 seconds per shot for a well-trained soldier.


The Rifleman is the result of a significant upgrade in small firearms technology during the late Renaissance/early Industrial Era. The invention of new loading systems allows a unit to shoot many more bullets per minute than with earlier weapons, and a new design of the barrel of the gun gives its projectile a much greater boring force. The soldiers that use these new rifles are substantially more powerful than Musketmen, giving the army of a civilization with Riflemen a big advantage over armies that don't have them yet.

Still, like earlier infantry units, the Riflemen remain vulnerable against ranged barrages, as well as hit-and-run cavalry attacks.

Unique Unit Replacements

Icon Unit Civilization Abilities
Unitflag abrade.png
The Ashanti (Osei Tutu I)
  • Combat bonus vs wounded units
  • +2 Moves.png Movement for 1 turn after being trained
Unitflag bersaglieri.png
Sardinia-Piedmont (Victor Emmanuel II)
  • +1 Moves.png Movement and a combat bonus when in friendly territory
  • Can upgrade to Garibaldino after earning 4 levels
Sweden (Gustavus Adolphus)

Sweden (Karl XII)

  • Starts with the March promotion
ChhetriIcon 256.png
Chhetri Battalion Nepal (Jung Bahadur Rana)
  • More costly to produce, but produced faster depending on the Gold generated locally.
  • Earns +25% Great General points from Combat.
Cleaner The En Family (En)
  • Gains +50% more Experience from Combat.
  • Newly-trained Cleaners begin with a random Promotion.
Unitflag Colorado.png
Bolivia (Belzu)
  • +15% Strength.png Combat Strength in Rough Terrain
  • +1 Strength.png Combat Strength per 5 excess Happy.png Happiness (up to +5)
IconPNG Cruzob.png
Flag cruzob.png
Yucatán (Santiago Mendez)
  • Cheaper to purchase with FaithIcon.png Faith
  • Gains FaithIcon.png Faith from kills
  • Earns Greatperson.png Great General points faster than the Rifleman
Dayak Ranger Sarawak (James Brooke)
  • Weaker but cheaper to produce.
  • Has the Amphibious promotion.
  • +25% War.png Combat Bonus in Forest and Jungle, a weaker version of these bonuses is provided to neighboring friendly non-Ranger units.
Fengu Gunner South Africa (Nelson Mandela)
  • +25% Strength.png Combat Strength in Citystate.png CS territory.
  • Killing enemy units in or next to Citystate.png City-State territory yields extra Influence with that Citystate.png City-State.
  • Can construct Roads.
Fenian Ireland (Michael Collins)
  • Gains Strength.png Combat Strength from Defensive Buildings in nearby Irish Cities.
Freebooter Icon.png
Flag freebooter.png
United Fruit Company (Sam Zemurray)
  • +30% Strength.png Combat Strength when fighting on Bonus Resources
  • May pillage Plantations in rival territory without declaring war for a large sum of Gold.png Gold
Freikorps 256.png
Frei flag.png
Germany (Frederich Wilhelm I)
  • +30% Strength.png Combat Strength in friendly terrain
  • double movements in Forest tiles
Grenadier Austria (Joseph II)
  • +15% Strength.png Combat Strength vs. Riflemen Units
  • May perform an extra attack if beginnings its turn adjacent to another Grenadier Unit
Nepal (Prithvi Narayan)
  • +2XP every turn
  • +50% XP generation from combat
  • -11% Production.png Production Cost
Unitflag highlander.png
Scotland (James VI)
  • Double Moves.png Movement when in hills
  • Starts with additional Experience for each Greatwork.png Great Work in the city
Imperial Guard France (Napoleon)(with France (Louis XIV) installed)
  • +8% Strength.png Combat Strength (37 vs 34)
  • +16% Production.png Production cost (260 vs 225)
  • Starts with the Great Generals I promotion
  • If trained in a city with a Courthouse, begins with +20 Experience
Isabelino Spain (Isabella II)
  • May attack twice if starting in friendly territory.
  • If trained or upgraded within the borders of a city occupied by a Great General, may be disbanded for Influence.png while in City-State territory.
Unitflag Jaakari.png
Finland (Kekkonen)
  • Gains Experience each turn spent in a friendly civ's territory
  • Starts weaker
Unitflag jaeger.png
Germany (Bismarck)

(When Hitler's Germany / Arminius' Germans are installed)

  • Starts with the Scouting I and Survivalism I promotions
  • Can earn Recon unit promotions
  • Earns promotions 15% faster
Jazayerchi icon.png
Jazayerchi The Afsharids (Nader Shah) (DJSHenninger)
  • +1 Moves.png Movement
  • +50% War.png flanking bonus
  • Grants Flanking bonus to Mounted units within 2 tiles
MC Jazayerchiha 256.png
Jazayerchiha The Afsharids (Nader Shah)
  • +8% Strength.png Combat Strength (24 vs 26)
  • +10% Production.png Production cost (150 vs 165)
  • When starting a turn next to a mounted unit, both units receive +1 Moves.png Movement and +10% Strength.png Combat Strength
Jilamana The Bunuba (Jandamarra)
  • -12% Strength.png Combat Strength (30 vs 34).
  • Begins with Scouting I and Survivalism I.
  • May move after attacking.
  • Moves.png Movement replenished whenever an adjacent enemy Unit is defeated.
Katipunero Philippines (Emilio Aguinaldo)
  • Regains +1 Moves.png Movement and +10 HP upon adopting a Social Policy, doubling if in friendly borders.
Unitflag katipunero.png
The Philippines (Jose Rizal)
  • +1 Moves.png Movement when in friendly territory
  • +25% Strength.png Combat Strength after choosing an Ideology
  • Abilities stay on upgrade
King's Guard Siam (Rama V)
  • Receives additional XP when trained in the Capital.png Capital based on a third of the total XP a unit would normally receive when trained in other cities (up to 30 XP total).
Lansaai Icon.png
Flag Lansaai.png
Lanfang (Luo Fangbo)
  • Slightly weaker (32 Strength.png Combat Strength)
  • +50% Strength.png Combat Strength when within 2 tiles of a Trade Route
  • Provides various yields when stationed on a resource improved by a Mine
Unitflag landwehr.png
Prussia (Frederick)
  • Increased Strength.png Combat Strength when adjacent to other units
Leib-Gvardia Russia (Alexander I)
  • -31% Production.png Production cost (175 vs 225)
  • +1 Moves.png Movement if beginning Fortified; increases to +2 Moves.png Movement if beginning next to another Leib-Gvardia
Greek Legion Icon.png
Light Jäger Ionian Islands (Antonios Komoutos)
  • Slightly weaker (29 Strength.png vs 34)
  • +1 Moves.png Movement
  • For 10 turns after disembarking, gains double Strength.png Offensive Strength and may pillage without spending Movement points.
Mehal Sefari
Ethiopia (Haile Selassie)
  • Starts with the Drill I promotion
  • Has a combat bonus when near the Capital
Mulazimmiya Mahdist State (Muhammad Ahmad)
  • Generates FaithIcon.png Faith on kill.
  • Deals attrition damage to nearby units if a Great Person was born the same turn.
Nauvoo Legion Deseret (Brigham Young)
  • +25% Strength.png Defense in Desert and Plains.
  • Receive a free Nauvoo Legion whenever you found a city on Desert or Plains, or whenever a Settler is killed.
Norwegian Ski Infantry
Denmark (Harald Bluetooth)

(When Christian IV's Denmark-Norway isn't installed)

  • +25% Strength.png Combat Strength when in snow, tundra, and hills
  • Double Moves.png Movement when in snow, tundra, and hills
Opalchentsi Bulgaria (Vasil Levski)
  • Gain up to +3 Strength.png Combat Strength for every 5 excess Happy.png Happiness in the empire.
  • Regains Moves.png Movement points and yields CultureIcon.png Culture when promoted.
Razakar Hyderabad (Osman Ali Khan)
  • -20% Strength.png Combat Strength (28 vs 34).
  • +1 Strength.png Combat Strength for every 150 Gold.png Gold in your treasury (max +15).
  • Earns Gold.png Gold from Kills.
  • Begins with the City Plunder promotion.
Unitflag redcoat.png
Great Britain (Victoria)
  • Ignores terrain cost and enemy zones of control
  • Offsets production penalties from unhappiness when garrisoned
Unitflag redguard.png
Red Guard
China (Mao Zedong)
  • Weaker
  • Spawns for free adjacent to a city when a Social Policy is enacted
  • Costs no maintenance when garrisoned
  • Grants CultureIcon.png Culture per turn equal to its level or number of Social Policy trees completed (whichever is higher) when garrisoned
Royal Regiment Rhodesia (Ian Smith)
  • +10 HP healed when fortifying outside friendly territory
  • +50% defense
Unitflag rurales.png
Mexico (Benito Juárez)

Mexico (Guadalupe Victoria)

Benito Juárez version:
  • +3 CultureIcon.png Culture and +15% Strength.png Combat Strength when garrisoned

Guadalupe Victoria version:

  • +2 Local Happy.png Happiness when garrisoned
  • +10% Strength.png Combat Strength in friendly territory
Rum Corps New South Wales (John Macarthur)
  • Begins with additional Experience equal to the Happy.png Happiness you receive from obtained Luxury Resources.
  • Upon capturing a City, spawns a random Luxury Resource on the tile.
Semyonovsky Regiment Russia (Elisabeth)
  • When facing a melee attack, this unit has a chance to withdraw from combat.
Sharpshooter Confederate States (Jefferson Davis)
  • Bombards enemies with a weak ranged attack before melee attack
  • +20% defense when on an Antebellum Manor
  • -4 Strength.png Combat Strength
Satsuma uu.png
Shizoku Satsuma (Saigo Takamori)
  • Starts with an extra +4% Strength.png Combat Strength multiplied by the number of Social Policies Satsuma has discovered above the world average, up to five.
  • Bonuses remain on upgrade.
Ski Infantry
Denmark-Norway (Christian IV)
  • +2 Moves.png Movement when starting on a hill tile
  • +20% Strength.png Combat Strength when starting on a hill tile
Unitflag sometent.png
Andorra (Roger-Bernard III)
  • -9% Combat Strength (31 vs 34)
  • -55% Production cost (125 vs 225)
  • Starts with the Altitude Training promotion
Tirailleur Senegal (Léopold Senghor)
  • -12% Strength.png Combat Strength (30 vs 34)
  • Doubled flanking bonus.
  • Experience doubled in the territory of a Declaration of Friendship partner or war ally.
  • Upon being defeated or upgraded, provides Goldenage.png Golden Age Points based on its level.
Zharques Yaqui Cajemé Wiko'i.png
Zharques Yaqui Cajemé Wiko'i Flag.png
The Yaqui (Cajemé)
  • May attack twice per turn when on or adjacent to desert or hills.
  • Gains +25% Strength.png Combat Strength against cities that share your religion.
Zouave France (Napoleon III)
  • -22% Production.png Production cost (175 vs 225)
  • +1 Moves.png Movement (3 vs 2)
  • -12% Strength.png Combat Strength (30 vs 34)
  • Receives additional Strength.png Combat Strength (max 10) per puppet city in the empire
  • +20% Strength.png Combat bonus in foreign lands
Unit Types
Ancient Era
ArcherChariot ArcherScoutSpearmanTriremeWarrior
Classical Era
Composite BowmanCatapultHorsemanSwordsman
Medieval Era
Renaissance Era
Industrial Era
ArtilleryCavalryGatling GunIroncladRifleman
Modern Era
Anti-Aircraft GunBattleshipCarrierDestroyerGreat War BomberGreat War InfantryInfantryLandshipMachine GunSubmarineTriplane
Atomic Era
Anti-Tank GunAtomic BombBazookaBomberFighterHelicopter GunshipMarineMobile SAMParatrooperRocket ArtilleryTank
Information Era
Giant Death RobotGuided MissileJet FighterMechanized InfantryMissile CruiserModern ArmorNuclear MissileNuclear SubmarineStealth BomberXCOM Squad
Civilian Units
ArchaeologistCaravanCargo ShipInquisitorMissionarySettlerWork BoatWorker
Great People
Great AdmiralGreat ArtistGreat EngineerGreat GeneralGreat MerchantGreat MusicianGreat ProphetGreat ScientistGreat Writer