Total War: Pharaoh — Best Royal Powers Guide

Select the best Royal powers in Total War: Pharaoh.

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Total War: Pharaoh presents you with a unique opportunity to conquer the lands of Egypt and Asia Minor at the onset of the Bronze Age Collapse. As Sea Peoples ransack your territories and pretenders rise to the challenge, you must do everything possible to rise to the occasion. Only then will you earn the crown. Our guide discusses the best Royal Powers in Total War: Pharaoh.

The Best Royal Powers in Total War: Pharaoh

This mechanic is something you’ll want to consider once you’ve become the ruler of Egypt. The Total War: Pharaoh Royal Powers consist of five options:

  • Court Presence: Allows you to assign your generals to vacant court positions. If chosen, this can be seen via the Court menu/panel.
  • Corvee Labor: Allows you to construct buildings up to Level 2 in a province; all damaged buildings are repaired. If chosen, you’ll see a green button to the left of the province settlements panel.
  • Growth Migration: Adds extra manpower/workforce to a province, unlocking higher-tier buildings. If chosen, you’ll see a yellow button to the left of the province settlements panel.
  • Competency: Lets you assign a free skill point to any general or leader in your faction. If chosen, you’ll see an extra circular button in a general’s info panel.
  • Forced Annexation: Causes you to take over the lands of another faction instantly. If chosen, you’ll see a green button when engaging in diplomacy with another faction.

These Royal Powers are all subject to limitations, such as turn cooldowns. Moreover, you can only select two Tier 1 Powers at low Legitimacy. For other tiers, you must keep increasing your Legitimacy by way of battles, monuments, and landmarks. Doing so will allow you to select a different Royal Power or a better variant of something you’ve picked beforehand.

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The Best Royal Power Options: Competency and Forced Annexation

I genuinely feel that the best Royal Powers in Total War: Pharaoh are Competency and Forced Annexation. Competency allows you to add an extra skill point to any leader/general every few turns, which is great for improving their buffs or unlocking new titles. This is also a decent “catch-up” mechanic for newly-recruited generals.

Forced Annexation, meanwhile, can only be used against factions with one/two/three remaining settlements (depending on the tier). However, these settlements will be useful in furthering your diplomatic advances. For instance, you could exchange a lowly settlement in the middle of nowhere to earn a bunch of bartered resources, another city, or a leader’s submission as a vassal.

The Worst Royal Power Options: Growth Migration, Corvee Labor, and Court Presence

I personally won’t suggest getting these Total War: Pharaoh Royal Powers at all. Growth Migration isn’t really that necessary since you’ll spend so much time fighting Sea Peoples and other rebels as you expand across the map. As such, your provinces will earn additional workforce passively. Similarly, Corvee Labor won’t help out as much, considering how easy it is to gain resources for construction.

As for Court Presence, I feel that the Court Intrigue mechanic is tacked on and not fully fleshed out. At best, this only prevents other leaders from plotting against you, though the issues are minimal as long as you keep increasing your Legitimacy.

Which Powers Should Be Selected for Each Tier?

These are my suggestions when it comes to each Royal Powers tier:

  • Tier 1 Legitimacy: Competency I and Forced Annexation I; you can replace Competency with Corvee Labor I if you prefer.
  • Tier 2 Legitimacy: Forced Annexation II
  • Tier 3 Legitimacy: Competency III
  • Tier 4 Legitimacy: Forced Annexation IV

That’s all you need to know about the best Royal Powers in Total War: Pharaoh. The desert sands of Egypt and the towering mountains of Asia Minor await. Once you claim your destiny, these abilities will be at your disposal. See more of our TWP guides here.

About the author

Jason Rodriguez

Jason Rodriguez is a game reviewer and guides writer from the Philippines. With around 5,000 published articles, he's freelanced for numerous outlets, including GameSkinny, GameSpot, Polygon, IGN, PCGamesN, PC Invasion, and more.