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Every country has a capital province, which acts as center of government. A nation's capital is generally its most important province, and consequently the capital affects, and is affected by, many mechanics throughout the course of a game. For example, countries with capital provinces located within the bounds of the Holy Roman Empire are automatically given membership in the Empire.


Finding the capital[edit]

The button with the right arrow symbol in the toolbar below the minimap, when selected, will offer an option, ‘Go to home capital'. When that is chosen, the map will center on one's capital province. Alternatively, hitting either the Backspace or 🏠 Home keys will center on the capital. The capital can also be visually identified, as the flag in the province will be topped with a small yellow crown.

The capitals of other nations can be found by clicking on a province in their country, right-clicking the shield icon showing their flag, and choosing "Go To Capital Province".

Identifying the capital[edit]

In the province interface of the capital, left to the province name at the top, a gold crown within a red circle Capital.png is displayed. The capital always has an extra fort level that costs no maintenance but also does not have a zone of control (unless there is also a fort building there). Additionally, hovering over capital provinces will display the tooltip "Has a capital fort".

Purpose & effects[edit]

The capital province gets:[1]

Fort level.png +1 Fort level
  • In war: If a capital is occupied during a war, it will count for a greater warscore because of its value. Some casus belli use either the attacker's or the defender's capital as the wargoal. Occupying the enemy capital will increase the desire for peace of the AI, allowing you to potentially claim more in the peace deal. Just sieging the enemy capital also reduces War Enthusiasm for the AI. Taking the capital in a peace deal costs 20% more warscore.
  • For trade: Trade is automatically collected from the node containing the main trade port, even without a merchant (although a merchant will boost the income received). Collecting from trade in other nodes reduces one's trade power there by 50%. A nation's main trade port is always in the same province as the capital at the beginning of the game. Players with the Wealth of Nations.pngWealth of Nations expansion may move their main trading port to a new province at the cost of 200 Diplomatic points.
  • The development cost is reduced in the capital city, proportional to the country-wide development. For every 20 development, the capital gets a 1% reduction, up to a maximum of 50% (1000 total development).
  • For government envoys: Colonists and diplomats all return to the capital when they are unassigned, and the time taken to return depends on the distance from their target to the capital.

Trade companies: The Super-regions where the capital is located also determines the regions whereby the nation can set up trade companies.

Moving the capital[edit]

A country can move its capital to another province from the province interface by selecting the Move capital.pngblue crown in the upper left corner. Moving the capital will reset autonomy to 0% in the selected province. However, do note that all trade company provinces will be turned back into territories with a 5 year wait period to recreate the trade companies again.


  • It costs at least 200 Administrative power.png administrative power[2] to move the capital, with the cost increasing with both the difference in development between the provinces and the total development in the country.
  • The capital can be moved to any province on which the country has a core and is inside a state, though the province itself need only have a territorial core.
  • The capital can only be moved from a non-colonial region to a colonial region if the current capital is the last state province on that continent, while also isolated from the other territorial cores on that continent.
  • Moving the capital from a colonial region to a non-colonial region will immediately create colonial nations.
  • The new capital must have at least the same amount of development of the current capital or the cost will be higher than the minimum.
  • A Holy Roman Empire member cannot move its capital to a non-imperial province, nor can a non-member move its capital to an imperial province.

Circumstances that move the capital[edit]

Certain countries such as the Flag of Ottomans Ottomans, Flag of Poland Poland and Flag of Russia Russia also have decisions to move the capital for no costs.

Additionally, decisions to form new nations also often move the capital to an important historical province for the new nation. Examples of this are Flag of Jerusalem Jerusalem or Flag of Yuan Yuan.

The capital, and any foreign diplomats active in it, will automatically change in the event that it is conquered in a war.

If the main trade port is in the capital, moving the capital will move trade ports as well.

Fixed capitals[edit]

Some countries have a so-called "fixed capital" defined. This is usually a province considered absolutely integral to the nation. For example, the nation of Ulm has the Ulm province as its fixed capital, and the Papal State has Roma. The AI cannot move its capital away from this fixed capital. Until patch 1.10 this also applied to the player. An AI controlled nation with fixed capital that does not own this province will move its capital for free to this province as soon as it owns the province (unless this would cause the nation to join the HRE). Full list of fixed capital countries:

Capital state[edit]

The capital state is the area that contains the capital. This area is always a state.

All provinces in the capital state get:[3]

Local institution spread.png +5% Institution spread
State maintenance.png −50% State maintenance
Province governing cost.png −100% Province governing cost


  1. See in /Europa Universalis IV/common/static_modifiers/00_static_modifiers.txt (Static modifiers#Capital City).
  2. See in /Europa Universalis IV/common/defines.lua under PS_MOVE_CAPITAL.
  3. See in /Europa Universalis IV/common/static_modifiers/00_static_modifiers.txt (Static modifiers#Capital State).

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