Civilization V Customisation Wiki

The Trireme is a Naval melee unit available in the Ancient Era.


The trireme was a warship used by ancient navies in the Mediterranean. Although equipped with a sail, under combat it was powered by three rows of oars. When powered by trained and motivated oarsmen, it was surprisingly quick and agile. Triremes were generally equipped with a sharp beak (ram) at the prow, and the primary tactic was to attempt to ram and sink the enemy ship. Some triremes also carried archers for ranged combat, while others carried lots of infantry. Those vessels would come alongside an enemy ship and the infantry would board and attempt to capture her. Triremes remained important military vessels until they were made obsolete by cannon and advances in ship construction and sail-rigging.


The Trireme is the first naval unit available to civilizations in the game. It depends on a combination of sails and oars to move, which gives it a decent speed, but makes it very unstable in open seas, and thus unable to traverse ocean tiles. It is a melee unit with a modest Melee Combat Strength and thus only usable against other sea vessels, or in the utmost case to attack coastal cities.

The Trireme is useful for clearing barbarian ships out of home waters and also for your early sea exploration of the coast. Also, it could help at attacking and capturing enemy cities, but don't rely entirely on them - they're vulnerable against the city's ranged attacks, and any archer units firing at them from the ground.

Unique Unit Replacements[]

Icon Unit Civilization Abilities
'Alia Tui Manu'a (Matelita)
  • +1 Moves Movement when undamaged at the start of a turn.
  • Begins with 10 additional XP per luxury resource (max 40)
Anan Yaghan (Masémikensh)
  • -3 Strength Strength.
  • Produced faster from forest tiles around the city.
  • Performs a weak ranged attack before melee combat if stacked with an embarked unit.
Assault Trieres Athens (Pericles)
  • +20%Strength Combat Strength (12 vs 10)
  • May capture enemy ships after starting the turn adjacent to another friendly naval unit
Badan Icon
Badan Saba-Da'amat (Makeda)
  • Generates Experience when starting its turn on or adjacent to Luxury or Strategic resources.
  • May expend its levels within foreign territory, granting a boost of Gold Gold and Goldenage Golden Age points in return.
Unitflag bireme
Phoenicia (Hiram I)
  • Generates Greatperson Great Merchant points from combat
  • Transfers Moves Movement points to stacked units at the beginning of each turn
Uu boita flag
Funan (Soma)
  • May move when purchased.
  • Earns faith when travelling along maritime trade routes.
  • When trained or purchased in cities with an international trade route, begins with experience dependent on the economic output of the two cities.
Byzantium (Theodora)
  • Has a ranged attack
  • +50% Strength Combat Strength vs Naval units
  • Upgrades to Galleass
  • -20% Strength Strength
Unitflag galea
Minoa (Minos)
  • +1 Moves Movement
  • Can move through rival territory
  • Cheaper and slightly weaker
Galea Sottile Venice (Domenico Selvo)
  • Trained with additional Strength combat strength depending on the Faith output of the city.
  • Winning in battle grants Greatperson Great Merchant Points in the capital.
Garay Icon
Flag Garay
Sulu (Azim ud-Din I)
  • Lower Strength Combat Strength (8 vs 10)
  • +1 Moves Movement
  • Gains FaithIcon Faith from pillaging naval Tile Improvements
  • Starts with Coastal Raider I
Getanget The Wabanaki (Henri Membertou)
  • -1 Moves Movement (3 vs 4)
  • -11% Production Production cost (40 vs 45)
  • Captures the first enemy vessel it attacks (costs health and cripples the enemy vessel)
  • Upgrades to Privateer
Phoenicia (Pygmalion)
  • Can move through rival territory
  • +2 Moves Movement for stacked embarked units
IconPNG Iqyax
Flag iqyax
The Aleut (Agugux)
  • Can move through Coast and Ice
  • Heals stacked units
MC Lagatoi 256
Lagatoi Motu (Edai Siabo)
  • +1 Moves Move for the first 5 turns after leaving friendly territory.
  • May be loaded with a copy of the Uro luxury resource, allowing it to conduct a trade mission.
  • After performing a trade mission, starts a We Love the King Day when returning to a city.
Lembos Illyrians (Teuta)
  • Cheap and weak.
  • Stronger against Naval Units for every adjacent Lembos.
  • Grants +1 Moves Movement to stacked or adjacent Land Units.
Lippa Lippa The Yolngu (Wonggu)
  • May enter Deep Ocean at Currency.
  • Gain Strength Combat Strength for every civilization you have met from a foreign landmass (diminishing returns).[1]
  • Provides +1 Food Food, +3 Gold Gold and +1 CultureIcon Culture when stationed on a featureless Coast tile with an Traderoute international trade route passing over it.
Uu Mishihasebune flag
Honma (Honma Yoshihisa)
  • More expensive to train.
  • Gain additional experience from combat along river deltas.
  • May freely explore the ocean north of where it was trained.
  • Does not obsolete.
Navis Lusoria Western Rome (Majorian)
  • Begins with Moves Movement depending on Citystate City-State alliances.
  • Units trained in a City after a Navis Lusoria will pay no Moves Movement penalty crossing rivers or marshes.
Noka Canoe The Calusa (Caalus)
  • -33% Production Production cost (30 vs 45)
  • -50% Strength Combat Strength (5 vs 10)
  • +2 Strength Combat Strength for each adjacent Noka Canoe
  • Forces defenders to retreat when inflicting more damage than taken
  • Immune to Scurvy Attrition (ExCE)
Tahiti (Purea)
  • Can Improve Sea Resources (if Astronomy has been researched, this consumes the Pahi)
  • Can Change Port to immediately travel between coastal cities
Minoa (Minos) (LastSword)
  • Unlocked at Agriculture
  • -44% Production Production Cost
  • -20% Strength Combat Strength
  • May randomly trigger Ancient Ruins bonuses while moving
DMS Ithica Penelope Pentekontor
Pentecontor Ithaca (Penelope)
  • It generates more Experience depending on its distance to owned territory.
  • Increases the Defense of adjacent Embarked Land Units.
IconPNG Piratica
Piratica The Oeselians (Vesse)
  • Earns FaithIcon Faith upon killing an enemy unit
  • When initiating an attack, damages adjacent enemy units
Carthage (Dido)
  • 30% Strength Stronger
  • Ignores enemy zones of control (with Hannibal's Carthage installed)
Robura Ship The Aremorici (Viridovix)
  • May withdraw when attacked.
  • Practically immune to Ranged Attacks.
IconPNG Sakman
Flag sakman
The Chamorro (Matå'pang)
  • +1 Moves Movement
  • Heals 10 HP when beginning its turn on a friendly or neutral Sea Resource
Sea Steed
Greenland (Erik Thorvaldsson)
  • Generates experience when next to foreign continents.
  • Civilian units stacked with a Sea Steed of at least Level 3 will be able to cross Ocean.
Unitflag tongiaki
Tonga ('Aho'eitu)
  • Can enter Deep Ocean tiles
  • Grants deep ocean crossing to stacked units at the beginning of each turn
JFD VandalsAtlas 256
Unitflag trihemiolia
The Vandals (Genseric)
  • Begins with the Coastal Raider Promotion.
  • Cities with a stationed Trihemiolia are Razed twice as quickly.
War Canoe
The Haida (Koyah)
  • Can move after attacking.
  • Heals 10HP if turns begins next to a Forest
  • +33% Strength Combat Strength vs. Land Units
  • Upgrades to Privateer
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
  1. First civ +2, second civ +1, third civ has a 50% chance to +1. whenever it reaches 14 strength (+4 total), next civ has a 20% chance to +1 whenever it reaches 15 Strength and thereafter, next civ has a 10% chance to +1