|This is the article on religion in Emperor. If you are looking for the article on religion in other games, see Religion.|
Religion is a gameplay mechanic found in Emperor: Rise of the Middle Kingdom.
Like in all previous games, Emperor has several gods to pay homage, conferring a benefit. Unlike the other games, paying homage is sometimes a mission goal (Months of Heroes) and is necessary in some circumstances.
There are 12 gods in the game, three for each of the four types of religion available. The four religions available in the game are:
Each of the religions has at least one god involved in some sort of military role. Missions that require a certain number of menagerie animals to be present in the Palace will either include Nu Wa or Xi Wang Mu.
Although Ancestral worship is available in nearly every campaign mission, the other religions are not always available. Confucianism is not available in any missions where Elite Housing cannot be constructed as this religion is associated only with people living in Elite Houses. Daoism becomes available towards the end of the Zhou Dynasty and takes center stage as an important religion, up until the end of the Han Dynasty.
Buddhism becomes available in the very last mission of the Han Dynasty and is an alternative to Daoism for housing evolution. It is generally not necessary to provide either Daoism or Buddhism access to the populace unless you are intending to call one of the heroes associated with these religions.
As mentioned previously, there are 12 gods available in the game. However, to complete certain missions, it is necessary to summon one or more of these gods to the city to reach the Months of Heroes goal. It should be noted that it is not necessary to keep the god in the city for the stated number of months: this is a cumulative total, so gods can be summoned as and when necessary, from any religions.
Generally, the heroes that should be summoned depends on what you are trying to do in the mission. For example, if you have to build a monument, summoning Xi Wang Mu is a good option, as her mere presence in the city will speed up all monuments, causing them to be completed faster. If one of your goals is to have a Yearly Profit, then summoning Mencius will help, as he can bless Trading Posts to increase their profit: his mere presence in the city also allows for traders to appear more frequently on the map.
Summoning a hero is done by paying homage to that god. You cannot pay homage to a god if the associated building for that religion is not present: for example, you cannot pay homage to, or summon, Daoist heroes if the Daoist Temple has not been placed somewhere in the city. The hero will only enter the city if their mood is high enough: a hero who is only Contented will not enter the city, but a hero who is Joyful has a very high chance to enter your city and confer benefits. A point will be reached where heroes will be summoned even when they are Contented, though it usually requires that the associated monument for that god has been completed or that the city is of a sufficient size.
However, there is a catch to summoning heroes: excluding the Ancestor Heroes, all other religions require Excellent coverage before gifts will do anything. For Daoism and Buddhism, this means that all houses need to be served by a priest: it is recommended that all Common Housing be served from basic shrines and that an Elite Housing block be served from the associated temple building. Summoning a Confucianism hero simply requires all elite housing to be served by a Confucian Academy. If you do not have Excellent coverage, then homage gifts to heroes of Daoism, Buddhism and Confucianism will do nothing to improve their mood and be wasted.
As already mentioned, heroes need to be summoned to the city through gifts made to them. There are several factors that affect the effectiveness of a homage gift:
- The cost of a good: expensive goods such as Silk and Lacquerware will confer massive benefits at only Medium gifts than Hemp and Ceramics.
- The overall Feng Shui harmony: the gifts will be more effective when the city is in Perfect Harmony (aka, all buildings placed on green footprints). Gift effectiveness drops as the Feng Shui drops: a city with Harmonious Balance will still have the same effects as one in Perfect Harmony, so ensuring all cities are at least in Harmonious Balance will keep gifts being effective.
- The coverage level of that religion: this has already been mentioned, but if there isn't perfect coverage for non-Ancestor heroes, the gift will do nothing and be wasted.
Ancestor Heroes need to be kept happy at all times, as these are the only gods who can become angry and send natural disasters to the city. Everyone else will stay Contented and never get upset.
Although cheap goods such as Hemp don't have much effect, they may be enough to keep an Ancestor hero from getting upset. For example, since Hemp can build up in very large supply from just a few farms, great offerings of Hemp can be a good way to keep the gods from getting angry, but also can be useful in boosting a gods mood to Exalted without wasting expensive goods such as Silk and Lacquerware. Early on in a city, when you probably won't have many workers or that much to send, cheaper goods can be enough to keep them happy until you build up bigger supplies.
Summoning heroes can have many benefits for a city, however it is usually dependent on the goals available in that mission as to what gods are available. You will never have all 12 gods in a campaign map. For example, if you are not building any monuments, then there is no reason for Xi Wang Mu to be present in the city. If no animals need to be captured for a Palace, then Nu Wa will most likely not be available.
The following table lists the gods, their associated religion and the benefits they confer:
|List of Heroes|
|Nu Wa||Ancestral||Great Temple|
|Can bless Inspector's Towers to improved status. Can bless Clay Pits, Fishing Quays and Hunter's Tents, converting 1 unit into 4 units for delivery.||Can capture any animals on the map for the Palace. Enemies find it harder to burn buildings.|
|Shen Nong||Ancestral||Splendid Temple|
Grand Temple Complex
|Can bless Farmhouses and Hemp Farms||Satisfies NPC requests for food without using supplies.|
|Huang Di||Ancestral||Earthen Great Wall|
Stone Great Wall
|Provides limited Ceramics when passing houses||Kiln|
|Can bless Kilns and Silkworm Sheds, converting 1 unit into 4 units for delivery.||Can be sent on military expeditions, improving morale for Charioteers. Satisfies NPC requests for Ceramics|
|Xi Wang Mu||Daoism||Grand Temple Complex|
|All monument workers complete their tasks faster while in city.||All Guilds|
Jade Carver's Studio
|Can bless Jade Carver's Studios.||Can capture any animals on the map for the Palace.|
|Zao Jun||Daoism||Large Palace|
|All housing passed receive Delicious Food||Houses|
|Blesses Food Shops, increasing their food quality by one while the blessing is in effect.||The New Year's festival costs nothing.|
|Guan Di||Daosim||Temple Complex|
Stone Great Wall
|No muggers, thieves or bandits will spawn in the city, even if conditions are correct.||All Forts|
|Can bless Mills and Warehouses with maximum Bean curd (if available in mission and set to accept that much). Can bless Confucian Academy with maximum wood or Paper. Can bless all forts with required weapons and/or wood.||Improves Cavalry Fort morale.|
|Tax revenues are increased without losing favour.||Tax Office|
Grand and Imperial Ways
|Can bless Tax Office with wood or Paper.||Satisfies one burial good provision for Tumulus monuments.[note 1]|
|Sun Tzu||Confucianism||Earthen Great Wall|
|Your spies cost half to train.|
Captures and reverses any enemy Spies in the city.
|All forts and fortifications.||Can bless all Forts, causing the time taken to train troops to be reduced.[note 2]||Improves Infantry Fort morale. Reduces travel time of your army when sent to conquer other cities|
|Mencius||Confucianism||Grand Temple Complex|
|Traders arrive more frequently during a game-year.||Warehouse|
Trading Posts and Trading Quays
|Can bless Trading Posts and Trading Quays, increasing incomes.[note 3]||None|
|Guan Yin||Buddhism||Grand Canal|
|Bribes to invaders cost half their normal values. City Health is improved.||Well|
Various desirability boosting structures (Garden, Flowering Trees, Wayside Pavilions, Ponds, Tai Chi Parks and Private Gardens)
|Can bless Wells to improved status||None|
|Provides limited Tea when passing houses.||Tea Curing Shed|
|Can bless Tea Curing Sheds and Watchtowers||Satisfies NPC requests for Tea without using supplies.[note 4]|
|Sun Wu Kong||Buddhism||Large Palace|
|All emissaries cost nothing and reach their destination faster.||Stoneworks|
|Can bless Weaponsmiths and Stoneworks, converting 1 unit of goods into 4 for delivery.||Can capture any animals on the map for the Palace. Can help fight battles at home and abroad.|
- ↑ The description implies that a burial provision for the Tumulus can only be acquired from Confucius being in the city to provide it. This is not correct: Tumulus monuments don't require an additional provision from Confucius to be completed.
- ↑ This blessing does not work whatsoever in an unpatched version of the game.
- ↑ This blessing is broken in an unpatched version of the game.
- ↑ Although Bodhidharma is a fighter hero, he does not improve morale and cannot be sent to help in conquering cities abroad.