CIVILIZATION VI: JAYAVARMAN VII LEADS KHMER

Much of that we know about King Jayavarman VII comes from inscriptions on the temple at Räjavihära (now Ta Prohm). These inscriptions offer a rich, yet still incomplete history of this beloved king of the Khmer Empire.

Rising to power during a period of crisis for the Khmer, Jayavarman was a military leader. By 1181, Jayavarman VII had repelled Cham invaders to the north and when hostilities died down, he crowned himself king. But instead of turning outward and seeking to aggressively expand, he focused on his people.

King Jayavarman VII saw himself as a warrior for his subjects. As a result, his rule was marked by its tolerance and his drive to create a place of safety and paradise for his subjects.

He went on to make Mahayana Buddhism the state religion, breaking with 400 years of Khmer Hinduism. And to mark the occasion, he would initiate an era of unprecedented construction and infrastructure creation. Among the improvements made on his watch: numerous temples, 102 hospitals, stone-paved highways out of reach of flood waters, the 54 towers at Bayon, and extensive irrigation projects. Another documented project was the construction of rest houses every 15 km throughout the kingdom.

King Jayavarman VII and his people-driven reign remains fondly remembered in Cambodia, where he figured prominently in state-produced education materials well into the 20th century.

 

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UNIQUE UNIT: THE DOMREY

Khmer employed war elephants in their military campaigns. Once docile farming animals, Domrey were 12,000 pounds of might used to break enemy lines and stampede through enemy forces. Usually, Khmer riders would use the precision of double crossbows to supplement the raw power of their elephants; however, the Domrey variant here adds the sheer force of a mounted ballista, making it more mobile (and more deadly) than a traditional catapult.

 

UNIQUE IMPROVEMENT: THE PRASAT

These holy sites at the center of Khmer worship would serve as both symbols of their warrior-kings’ piety and their engineers' brilliance. The earliest Khmer temple on record is Prasat Ak Yom (c. 800), its design reflecting the South Indian tradition of 'ratha'-style temples, towering edifices terminating in a crown at the top. Of course, the Khmer would add their own flourish, adding prangs, or towers to the structures. 

 

LEADER UNIQUE ABILITY: “MONASTARIES OF THE KING”

With Jayavaraman VII’s pious devotion, it makes sense that his unique ability, “Monasteries of the King,” would highlight his religious reform. Playing as Jayavaraman VII, you can grab adjacent territory when you complete your Holy Sites, which also provide additional Food and Housing when built on a river.

CIV UNIQUE ABILITY: “GRAND BARAYS”

 

The “Grand Barays” ability focuses on Jayavaraman VII’s devotion to providing infrastructure to his people. This ability increases Khmer’s food yield when Farms are built next to Aqueducts, and makes Aqueducts far more versatile by granting bonuses to Faith and an Amenity.

Anyone who purchased the Digital Deluxe Edition of Civilization VI will receive this leader – and the DLC pack – automatically when it goes live.

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