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Old Oct 11, 2010, 10:54 PM   #1
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Review of Civilization 6, published in March 2013

Here is an article from a gaming magazine published in 2013:

A Classic Revived:
Review of Sid Meier's Civilization 6
Published in June, 2013

+ Most flaws of Civ 5 are gone
+ Policy system allows different player styles
+ Small-area civilizations are favored, less emphasis on landgrabbing
+ Less micro-management
- Some classical civilizations, leaders, buildings and units of previous games have been left out

The best-selling TBS series ever is back. Since its debut 1991, a new version of Civilization has been released every five years, most of them followed by expansion packs. The game mechanics of Civ 1 were simple, but each new game added new features, and Civ 4: Beyond The Sword was about as complex as a strategy game could get. Civilization: Revolution and Civilization 5 simplified the game again. "Dumbed down" and "broken", said hardcore fans, and hoped for an expansion pack to re-add religions, spies, growing villages and other popular Civ 4 elements. Firaxis never made a full expansion pack to Civ 5. However, they provided many pieces of downloadable content: civilizations, leaders, units and scenarios. Though beautiful and well-balanced (the World War I scenario was a multiplayer hit) and costing more than 60 USD put together, they didn't really make the game different.

2K and Firaxis decided to move on to a new standalone game, simple at release, intended to be made more complex with later expansion packs and scenarios. And it has gone gold just two and a half years after the last Civ game. As DRM remains a hot issue, 2K Games has sought new ways to offer value for legal copies. The box version of Civilization VI includes printed reference cards, and a decorated USB stick. Users registered in Europe can enjoy a streamed soundtrack by Spotify, totalling 60 hours of playtime of folk, world, classical and jazz music in the public domain. The opening menu melody is a choir interpretation of Jean Sibelius' Finlandia, actually composed to illustrate the birth of a nation.

A streamlined impression
The interface has an ancient look of marble and bronze, retaining the hex tiles, and the white fog of unknown lands from Civ 5. Other visual improvements include the full motion camera view and the option to view diplomacy in full-screen, split-screen or text-only. Civ VI has re-invented the elevation system of Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri; each hex has a height multiple of 250 metres. High ground provides good view and a defense bonus. This makes the map look a lot more dramatic, though the Earth map is not fully realistic. But has it ever been?

Spain made it to the 15 included nations this time, probably due to the enormous gaming market in Hispanic countries. If you miss Persia, Babylon, Mongolia, or any African nation besides Egypt, the setup menu offers a Civilization Maker, where you can import a flag, and write a list of city names. As Europe tends to be overcrowded, Civ VI offers a new feature called Alternate Starting Locations. With these turned on, some Western nations might start out in their real-world colonial realms. France could begin their quest in Québec, and the Greek nation could be founded in Mesopotamia (not too strange, since Babylon was a core city in Alexander's empire). Through online registration, users get the Persian civilization as a bonus.

Unique units are no longer fixed to one civilization. Instead, when a civilization discovers a technology that gives access to a unique unit, they can grab it, if no rival civilization took it first (though they are rationed, so that there is at least one for each player). AI leaders prefer their traditional units, so Catherine of Russia usually goes for MiG fighters. Civilizations have no truly unique abilities. They start the game with two Habitats (out of Arctic, Maritime, Pastoral, Temperate, Hydraulic and Tropical) with appropriate starting locations, offering combat and production bonuses in relevant territories. While Egypt starts out as Pastoral and Hydraulic, England becomes Arctic and Maritime. This hampers expansion into unfamiliar climate zones, just as in real-world history.

In lieu of our old friend Montezuma, the Aztecs are now led by his uncle, Ahuitzotl. If you thought Montezuma was ruthless, watch out for this guy!

Up to Civ 4, the primary sources of scientific research were budget allocation, and technology trading, which could rapidly spread new technologies around the world. To much disappointment, Civ 5 scrapped both. In Civ VI, the most straightforward way to new technologies is "building" them in the production queue. Later, specialists take on more of the research burden. Tech trading is back, now delayed by a few turns. Civilian agreements allow import of peaceful science such as Arch-and-Vault or Germ Theory without opening the Diplomatic screen, while a strategic agreement includes dangerous knowledge such as Horse Tack and Indirect Fire. Be sure not to open a strategic agreement with a treacherous rival! For the first time in the series, the number of cities penalizes research, so far-flung empires are not superior.

Disciplined, instead of happy
There are two new main resources. With Currency discovered, a share of the national budget can be funneled into Private Funds, illustrated by a top-hat () icon. By city, they attract luxury resources and maintain specialists, which in turn earn Great Person points. The city's amount of Private Funds are visualized by shacks transforming into region-specific architecture. They can speed up construction, but they are sensitive, and vanish during starvation, disorder or foreign attack. This adds a dynamic similar to the Cottage Economy of Civ IV. As Merchants and Great Merchants (represented by explorers and industrialists) produce Private Funds, a new specialist called Bureaucrat, raking in government funds. Among the Great Bureaucrats are many names who have advanced society, such as Plato, Niccolò Machiavelli, Karl Marx, Wellington Koo and Eleanor Roosevelt. As in Civ V, Priests and Great Prophets are absent.

Another resource, known as Discipline, has largely replaced Happiness. Illustrated by a pair of balance scales () Discipline is created by military structures such as Walls and Listening Stations, by Guard specialists (who also spawn Great Generals), garrisoned units and fights against barbarians. A high tax rate drains Discipline. Surplus Discipline can be spent on unit promotions, and annexions of foreign cities. There is no direct equivalent of War Weariness, but the supply, upgrade and promotion costs rise in foreign territory, making offensive war costly.

Apparently, a small, peaceful civilization needs little Discipline, while a leader bound for world conquest needs to build plenty of military buildings and employ lots of Guards in core cities, at the cost of civilian progress. When a city is deficient in Discipline, it falls into stagnation, unable to expand territory, train Settlers or grow more citizens. When Discipline is totally depleted, buildings might get damaged, but production never halts completely, as it used to do until Civ 3. This kind of crisis can be countered by devolving foreign-cultured cities into Dominions, which is similar to Vassalage in Civ 4, or Puppets in Civ 5.

Another use of Discipline, and the most important in the long run, is adoption of Policies. Civ 5 introduced the Social Policies, which could be adopted when the empire had collected enough Culture points. These are now known as Cultural Policies. Civ VI has a Discipline Policy tree and a Cultural Policy tree, both relating to each other. For instance, Warrior Class (a Discipline Policy), and Universal Suffrage (a Cultural Policy) cannot be active at the same time. Among Discipline Policies are Manorialism (extracts land tax), Single Party State (makes Guards much more efficient) and Strategic Bombing (damages enemy Discipline). The multitude of interlocking Policies offers a diversity of gameplay strategies, well compensating for the lack of civilization abilities. The AI leaders also have their clear profiles, with Isabella preferring Monarchy and Evangelism, and Lincoln going for Republic and Capitalism. If a city is distant from the capital, a portion of its produced culture diverges into a foreign national color (American for the English, etc), dragging down world domination.

Economic partnership or rivalry
City-states were introduced in Civ 5, giving huge food and culture bonuses to their allies. In Civ VI they act more like regular civilizations, able to build Wonders and enter agreements. Trade diplomacy used to be complex in Civ 4 and Civ 5, as each resource was traded in an individual agreement. Civ VI makes it simpler, introducing two kinds of trade agreements between civilizations, civilian and strategic. These can be one-sided. In a civilian trade agreement, civilizations automatically export all their surplus luxury resources for Private Funds. A strategic trade agreement also includes resources such as Iron and Oil. These are no longer essential for building any units, but they give significant production, mobility and combat bonuses, enough to be a deal-breaker at war.

Offices are a new tool of power. They represent social institutions in a city rather than physical buildings, such as a Consulate, a Mission or a Bank. Civilizations can create Offices in domestic and foreign cities, similar to religions and corporations in Civ 4, as a kind of "soft colonization", with the owner as the most favored part. Fans have already coined the term "Office Warfare".

Few units, but well-equipped and promoted
Much of the Civ 5 combat system remains, including embarkment and city hitpoints. Though the one-unit-per-tile rule was abandoned, units fight best when put in line formations, because of flanking bonuses. Archery and gun units are especially useful for this. As these units lost their Civ 5 ability to bombard, the bean-counting is reduced, to make room for more grand strategic thinking. A new Equipment system works parallel to promotions; units can be enhanced by Grenades, Radar and other supporting equipment (not visible in graphics, though) making up for the short list of units, where the Riflemen upgrade directly to Mechanized Infantry. As siege units and aircraft still bombard, targeted units are displaced to another tile before getting annihilated; though they lose equipment. A new system of visibility classes makes enemy units' promotions and equipment unknown, unless friendly units have Spyglass equipment, or Field Intel unit promotions.

Terrain improvements are now called Structures. They require much investment, but eventually allow great productivity on a small land area, and even yielding score. Solar Plants can make use of Deserts.

Civ 6 ends in 2025. Ironically, as this is the latest game in a series that began 22 years ago, the science-fiction part has been toned down. The classical Alpha Centauri victory has been demoted to a Mars Colony project, which feels more realistic anyway. The absence of Giant Death Robots is no great loss. There are no more units than Civ 4 or Civ 5, but as the tech tree unlocks promotions, unit development has become smoother. Atom bombs are weak, compared to earlier games, which makes them more tempting to use on the battlefield. The victory conditions of previous games remain, and the choice between Conquest, Domination, Space, Diplomatic or Cultural victory might not be apparent until the latter half of the game. Warnings when foreign civilizations approach victory, add some dearly needed end-game excitement. The game supports scripted events, too. You may call it artificial flavor, it will surely be useful in scenario making.

In general, Civ VI has the gameplay balance and interface finish of Civ 4, the accessibility of CivRev and the tactical excitement of Civ 5. It shows that RTS gaming is not about graphic resolution or number of features, but about strategic depth. And we cannot avoid to mention that the victory movie credits contain the words "Look out for Civilization VI: Heroic Epic. Expansion pack 1, coming 2014."
"We have fewer ships than we did in 1916. We also have fewer horses and bayonets. We have these things called aircraft carriers and planes land on them. We have ships that go underwater, nuclear submarines." Barack Obama

The absence of a Viking civilization in Civ 5, is good news. Viking means "pirate", "warrior" or "sailor". It was a profession, never a nation or tribe; most Scandinavians around AD 1000 were farmers/fishermen, not vikings. Vikings ruled by Ragnar Lodbrok makes as much sense as replacing the English with the Yeomen ruled by Robin Hood, or the Cowboys ruled by Zorro.

Last edited by Optimizer; May 03, 2013 at 08:03 AM.
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Old Oct 19, 2010, 11:24 PM   #2
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A colourful path through history: Civilization 6: Heroic Epic

+ New features fill out early-game gaps
+ Immersive, atmospheric interface
+ Scripted events with artwork
- Modern age still ends abruptly

As 2K Games wants to lure users for Tookay, their own distribution service, they use the already-launched Civilization VI as marketing bait. We don't know whether they will be able to challenge Steam, but we can guess that they made Firaxis rush their expansion pack Civ VI: Heroic Epic to be released before Christmas.

The base Civ VI game surprised the community by containing fewer units, buildings and civilizations than Civ V, but offering performance stability and balance. Just after release, Firaxis presented a DLC pack named African Dawn, containing four nations from a continent hardly represented in the core game, at the cost of $11.99. As Zululand, Carthage and Ethiopia are much requested classics of the Civilization series, the Congo, ruled by Nzinga Bande, makes a débute. It also contains a brand new African unit graphic set.

These are still DLC exclusive, as Heroic Epic fills the gaps in the Old World with ancient nations left out of the core game: well-known ones such as Persia, Babylon and Mongolia, together with Songhai as remembered by Civ V. Rumor says that some more commercially viable Western civilizations are saved for the next DLC bundle.

In the new title screen, a city panorama is gradually built up, in a time-lapse mode.

Early history becomes more eventful
While Civ VI has a marble interface that looks a bit misplaced in the late game, Heroic Epic upgrades from clay tablets, through woodcuts to a steel-looking interface in the Industrial Age. The pack adds the opportunity to play a Stone Age, beginning in 6000 BC, including discoveries taken for granted in the core game, such as Agriculture, Mining and Animal Husbandry. Wild beasts roam the land and put lone Settlers in danger, as they did in Civilization 4, and the first wars might be fought by Axemen, Slingers and Battering Rams. During the mid-game, the player can use new military units, such as War Elephants, Trebuchets, Privateers and Field Cannon, that give more edge to these conflicts. Apparently, a second EP has great potential to include 20th and 21st century weapons. Espionage is also enhanced from the simple base-game system, where Culture is used to carry out mission, and Discipline for defending. Spies get individual names and intricate promotion systems, with somewhat of a role-playing feeling. Together with the expanded lifespan of Great People, they make the civilization more personalized.

This expansion features pre-coded scripted events, as seen in Civ 4: Beyond The Sword. The first circumnavigator of the world went without a reward in the core game, but they get a free technology now. The same prize is rewarded for the first civilization to walk the North and South Pole (which open to land units after the advent of Geology). Clearing the World Map gives a free Discipline Policy instead. As even AI civilizations pursue these goals, they are usually finished well before the Space Race begins.

Many events and achievements, such as polar exploration, are accompanied by splash images.

Deeper Policy tree
A leader can choose between several new Policies; the interconnected tree allows for deeper strategic decisions than the unique civilization abilities did. The Heroic Epic, the game namer, is a very useful Policy, which provides Culture for fought battles (much as the Aztecs in Civ 5) visualized by a quill icon raising from the battle. Theocracy allows the Holy See; sort of a medieval United Nations. It can provide a Religious Victory, but this needs to be done fast, before Geopolitics renders it obsolete.

Nomadism is a new Discipline Policy which makes the early game really exciting. First, all land units get the ability to build Roads. More important, some units can go into Nomad mode when in unsettled territory, on the proper terrain. Archers need woodland, Horsemen need grassland, and so on. When Nomadizing, units have a new unit spawn in a few turns. They can also upgrade and promote, whether they are in supply or not. Nomadic armies can grow to large Hordes, allowing early-game rushes destroying city-states as well as whole civilizations. However, as all territory gets claimed, Nomads get obsolete.

Civilization VI: Heroic Epic brings back Health, a variable from Civilization IV. As a number reflecting life expectancy, it is not needed for survival. But enough Aqueducts, Hospitals and food resources, drives up the Health, prolonging Golden Ages, Great Person lifespan and siege endurance, as well as decreasing the need for Discipline (as old people are less rebellious).

Slaves, Ships and Health, gotta catch them all
Slaves are a new class of citizens. They are mainly captured by attacking foreign cities, or by purchase from other nations. Slaves consume a minimum of food, and are mobile between cities where they are needed most. They cannot be specialists, they damage city health, and consume Discipline. If a slave city falls into disorder, Slaves escape until order is restored. Slavery ends with the Emancipation Policy.

The Happiness concept was removed from Civ VI, as well as the classical We Love The Leader Day event. Now it's back: As soon as a city has a critical amount of Food, Health, Culture and Discipline, Food production is boosted, increasing population.

Merchant Ships are a new national resource, built by coastal cities. The merchant fleet is normally invisible, supporting trade routes, but for each unit embarked, or each offshore structure (Fishnet, Wharf etc) built, one merchant ship is engaged. Merchant ships can also be sunk by warships and pirates. This requires high production cost to build up a fleet, but yields some return. Embarkment also works smoother... as long as Merchant Ships are sufficient. The inventions of Compass, Steam Power and Heavy Equipment increase movement speed of embarked units, but they also decimate the Merchant Fleet, to simulate upgrade costs.

Heroic Epic also introduces a few new Offices. A sinister player can create a Mafia in a foreign city, damaging Discipline and tax income. Religious Missions for some civilizations now get unique names; French Missions are called Calvinist, Japanese missions are called Shintoist, and so on. These names are just flavor, though.

Though the Civ VI SDK allowed scenario-making, it is Heroic Epic that introduces the first official scenarios. Each has one protagonist only, and plenty of splash stills, speech and music. Alexander is a fast-pace rampage through the Middle East, and Genghis Khan is basically the same thing in Central Asia, relying on Nomadism. SPQR is more of a builder scenario, though nearly constant warfare is required for a good score.

Two DLC scenarios have been released. As the Joker said: "If you're good at something, don't do it for free." The Manifest Destiny scenario faithfully depicts the Thirteen Colonies from the late 17th century, through the Revolution and the Civil War, where you can choose between siding with the Union or Dixie. Feudal Japan is a bit too small-scale, and hardly worth the $7.99. This expansion pack makes Civ VI comparable to Civ 4: Beyond The Sword, but with more atmosphere, less micro-management and better music. And this is only the first expansion pack.
"We have fewer ships than we did in 1916. We also have fewer horses and bayonets. We have these things called aircraft carriers and planes land on them. We have ships that go underwater, nuclear submarines." Barack Obama

The absence of a Viking civilization in Civ 5, is good news. Viking means "pirate", "warrior" or "sailor". It was a profession, never a nation or tribe; most Scandinavians around AD 1000 were farmers/fishermen, not vikings. Vikings ruled by Ragnar Lodbrok makes as much sense as replacing the English with the Yeomen ruled by Robin Hood, or the Cowboys ruled by Zorro.

Last edited by Optimizer; May 03, 2013 at 08:06 AM.
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Old Oct 20, 2010, 01:49 AM   #3
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Credible Future: Review of Civilization 6: Balance of Power
+ Well-balanced add-ons
+ Modern frontline warfare works unusually smoothly for a TBS
+ Civilian part of game not overlooked
- Game sessions might be too tiresome at Normal timeframe
- Many popular civilizations are DLC only

Civilization 6 exceeded most fans' expectations, except when it came to modern warfare and technology. With the Modern and Future Ages merged into an Electric Age, nuclear warfare limited to Little Boy-size gravity bombs, and space victory through a mission to Mars, instead of the traditional Alpha Centauri, the 20th century felt quickly past through. Heroic Epic, the first expansion pack, did little to expand this epoch. A new pack, called Civilization 6 Deluxe Edition, contains the core game with this expansion pack, as well as the first civilization pack, totalling 23 nations. Among the new flavor features, we can mention that late-game voice action is soaked in short-wave radio noise.

As if that was not enough, there is some new DLC in store. First came an Asian Civilization bundle containing Korea, Bengal, Dravida and Siam, well received by millions of fans at the Pacific Rim. The next bundle named 1492, included the Netherlands, Portugal, Cherokee and Iroquois, as well as a scenario similar to a stripped-down version of Colonization. But still no modern stuff.

Enter Balance of Power. With suspension bridges spanning ocean straits, buildings such as the Empire State Building and CERN, units such as Airborne Infantry and Thermonuclear Missiles, leaders such as Churchill, FDR and Nehru (Gandhi has so far only been featured as a Great Person), and rock music, this pack takes the 20th century seriously. And the next two, as the calendar goes all the way to AD 2200, and the interface transformes to something resembling Windows Aero. UAVs, Railguns and Neutron Missiles provide a post-modern arsenal of destruction. Acts of espionage now extend into acts of terrorism. Assassinate Great People, support rebels, spread biological agents; other leaders may lose trust in you, and much Discipline will be lost, but most of these acts come with nice animations. Brazil, Indonesia and South Africa are the only new civilizations included.

Balance of Power also features production pooling, allowing cities connected by rail to divert production onto each other, reducing micromanagement during the late game. The Dominion system has been refined into three levels; Satellite State, Protectorate and Colony. While a Satellite State is simply prevented from strategic collaboration with a third party, a Protectorate has given up independent foreign policy, and a Colony even hands over its resources to the master. Large empires might detach distant cities as Colonies, granting them additional rights over time.

Some new Offices allow new domains of non-violent conflict; the Prospector uncovers resource deposits and yields extra resources to the owner, the Dissident increases the target's Discipline cost, and the Penal Colony gives a city a steady growth rate, while cutting intellectual production. Owning Retailers and Banks in a majority of the world's cities, and securing a critical number of resources, gives an Economic victory.

The old Civ-knockoff Call To Power might have inspired the deep-sea environment, which looks awesome in 3D. The Age of Exploration is re-experienced during the Electric Age, as the Sonar-equipped ships find different terrains at the seafloor: kelp, reefs, rifts, volcanoes brine pits and trenches. Instead of pollution, which was a disturbing feature of the first Civ games, Civ 6 has a similar but streamlined feature called Degradation, which in the endgame might cause resource depletion, deforestation or desertification. This process can be countered by building sustainable structures such as Parks, Windmills and Solar Panels.

Seasteder units can descend into the deeps; Luc Besson couldn't have done it better. Undersea cities allows exploitations of resources such as Gas, Squid and Manganese.

The space race is deeper now. Starting out with Sputnik-style satellites, each civilization can build its own orbital space station, as a base for interplanetary expeditions. Balance of Power honors the traditional goal: Alpha Centauri. Realistically, there are no naval-style space battles; instead players might build ICBMs until a Balance of Power is achieved; that's the title drop. Nuking a space station is rather easy, but the owner can achieve some retaliation by crashing it down anywhere on the map, preferrably into the perpetrator's territory. A civilization needs at least one Spaceport to keep up space operations. Spaceports may be backed-up, should one of them be destroyed.

The scenarios are few, but very elaborate. The Great War is great indeed, with voice acting, image splashes and quotes by Remarque, Hemingway and other great writers of the time. It also allows for well-balanced multiplaying, Diplomacy-style. The 2033 scenario revitalizes the dystopia genre, with the US military sold to Chinese corporations, an Islamist empire stretching from Siberia to Zanzibar, a fascist Mexico fighting the War on Drugs by bio-nuking Colombia, and a European Union having expelled the Mediterranean nations, leaving them to fall into anarchy. Not to mention the global warming.

The much anticipated World War II scenario does not just require Balance of Power. It also costs $15 extra to download. However, with top-down gameplay overhaul, it is a game on its own.

This expansion simply feels complete. All things that have ever been in a Civ game, is in Balance of Power. Except the annoying stuff, such as civil disorder, spearmen beating tanks and minimalist music.
"We have fewer ships than we did in 1916. We also have fewer horses and bayonets. We have these things called aircraft carriers and planes land on them. We have ships that go underwater, nuclear submarines." Barack Obama

The absence of a Viking civilization in Civ 5, is good news. Viking means "pirate", "warrior" or "sailor". It was a profession, never a nation or tribe; most Scandinavians around AD 1000 were farmers/fishermen, not vikings. Vikings ruled by Ragnar Lodbrok makes as much sense as replacing the English with the Yeomen ruled by Robin Hood, or the Cowboys ruled by Zorro.

Last edited by Optimizer; Oct 07, 2012 at 04:05 PM.
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Old Oct 25, 2010, 05:22 AM   #4
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I wish so, so much that Civ V would be like this. Alas, I think that as long as Civ V is on its current state, treads like these will become much more common, I fear.

Thing that I would love to see:

- Strategic and civilician's treatries

- Proper implementation of nomadism

- Different heights!

Not too sold onto:

- Fear VS trust / discipline / vs social policy system. Perhaps way too bidimensional, I am not too much of a fan of that approach to game design *cough Fable cough *

-Non unique units. I really like to obtain vastly different gamestyles from one civ to another one, so each game feels diferent to another
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Old Nov 14, 2010, 06:13 PM   #5
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Published in June, 2015[/B]


The legend goes on: Review of Civilization 6: What If
+ Beautiful graphics
+ Opportunities for user-generated content
- With all expansions together, unit and promotion tables are getting cluttered up

The sixth edition of the Civilization franchise has had plenty of add-ons since it release in 2012. Heroic Epic enhanced the early game, and Balance of Power the late game. 2K has released civilization bundles now and then. The most recent one is Europe, containing Celtica, Poland, Romania and Sweden, with the Gallic Warrior, the Hussar, the Vanatori and the Bärsärk (actual Swedish spelling, not made up to look bad-ass), bringing diversity to the mid-game. It also contains an elaborate Medieval scenario. A pack called New World, containing Canada, Australia, Mexico, Colombia and Argentina, will be released this autumn, as the very last officially sold content to Civilization 6, according to Firaxis.

With a new generation of fans, 2K has allowed Firaxis to develop yet another expansion, filling all possible gaps of human history and legend. The pack contains two main parts, called Forgotten History and High Fantasy.

Forgotten History contains several assorted add-ons to the base game. Outsider nations such as the Harappans (better known as the Indus Culture) and Berbers would probably not sell a DLC bundle, but they fill out empty spaces on the world map. The new units are more exciting; the Leonardo-inspired War Wagons, the steam-punky Air Balloons and the World War I-styled Heavy Howitzers, are offered as physical miniatures with the game box. Among the new event scripts, we find some satirical remarks to real-world history. You can blow up the parliament with gunpowder, deceive indigenous peoples, or use a honey trap against a journalist who leaks military files. These events make the game more human; we know that one death is a tragedy, while a million deaths are a statistic.

Appropriately, the two contained scenarios depict alternate history. One of them is The Years of Rice and Salt, inspired by the 2002 novel of the same name, where the Black Death wipes out the European nations. The second one, Rise of the South, starts off as the Confederates won the American Civil War, as in Turtledove's books. To raise the price of cotton, the CSA sparks an early war of independence in India, shattering the British Empire. Meanwhile, Finland breaks off from the Russian Empire and joins a Scandinavian Union. These scenarios provide teams at similar strength, good for multiplayer. Though the Forgotten History adds fewer features to the base game than previous expansions did, it gives flavor to the Renaissance and the Industrial Revolution.

There are already fan-made scenarios for the Lord of the Rings and Warcraft (of questionable quality though), so Firaxis knew where to go when they made the High Fantasy part. They deliver a generic high-fantasy world, where stereotypical fantasy races such as Dwarves, Elves, Trolls and Vampires build their nations with unique economic and military systems. The storyline is dumb and simple; first collect a number of artifacts, then fight an evil Demon civilization. Most effort has been put into unit graphics and the interface; these exceed everything seen before in a Civ game. The player can choose to listen to original Norse/Celtic compositions, or Richard Wagner and his contemporaries. Both are public domain, and better than the campy epic fantasy standard soundtracks.

Neither the Tolkien estate nor Blizzard Entertainment have sued their fans for making the above-mentioned scenarios, and Firaxis and 2K apparently intend the hard-working modders to implement the High Fantasy graphics in unlicensed scenarios for each and every franchise, without a nickel of license fees paid to trademark owners. A Warhammer mod would be easy; just rename and rebalance the units. I can't wait for a Discworld scenario, to deconstruct and mock all genre clichés. The opportunities are endless.

2K has marketed What If at fantasy conventions, and announced fanfic and fan-art contest. Apparently they want to expand the fanbase beyond the nearly-100%-male hardcore-gamer and military-history communities. And they count on the fans and modders to do part of the work.

By the way, there is also a rumor of Firaxis going on to produce Civilization 6: Alpha Centauri. We cross our fingers.
"We have fewer ships than we did in 1916. We also have fewer horses and bayonets. We have these things called aircraft carriers and planes land on them. We have ships that go underwater, nuclear submarines." Barack Obama

The absence of a Viking civilization in Civ 5, is good news. Viking means "pirate", "warrior" or "sailor". It was a profession, never a nation or tribe; most Scandinavians around AD 1000 were farmers/fishermen, not vikings. Vikings ruled by Ragnar Lodbrok makes as much sense as replacing the English with the Yeomen ruled by Robin Hood, or the Cowboys ruled by Zorro.

Last edited by Optimizer; Jun 28, 2012 at 07:24 AM.
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Old Nov 15, 2010, 02:26 AM   #6
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Thanks for revealing these information!
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Old Nov 15, 2010, 03:31 AM   #7
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Ah I love those Science Fiction games. Getting to read it right now.
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Old Jan 02, 2011, 07:37 AM   #8
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Coming soon: A review of Civilization 6: Alpha Centauri!
"We have fewer ships than we did in 1916. We also have fewer horses and bayonets. We have these things called aircraft carriers and planes land on them. We have ships that go underwater, nuclear submarines." Barack Obama

The absence of a Viking civilization in Civ 5, is good news. Viking means "pirate", "warrior" or "sailor". It was a profession, never a nation or tribe; most Scandinavians around AD 1000 were farmers/fishermen, not vikings. Vikings ruled by Ragnar Lodbrok makes as much sense as replacing the English with the Yeomen ruled by Robin Hood, or the Cowboys ruled by Zorro.
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Old Jan 04, 2011, 12:55 PM   #9
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You said "...assassinate great people..."

Well then, I hope Justin Bieber is one of the "Great Entertainers" so that we'll have a common target.
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Old Jan 04, 2011, 04:16 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by egaonogenki View Post
You said "...assassinate great people..."

Well then, I hope Justin Bieber is one of the "Great Entertainers" so that we'll have a common target.
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Old Sep 26, 2011, 08:01 PM   #11
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Review of Civilization 6: Alpha Centauri
Published in March 2014

Civilization... recycled in space
+ Softer, more dignified atmosphere than most sci-fi games
+ Well-balanced without exploits
- Limited range of units and buildings

Through the last two decades, the Civilization series has spawned several spin-offs. Sid Meier's Colonization from 1994 was remade in 2008, with the Civilization 4 engine. And as an independent sequel the sixth iteration of Civilization, the critically-acclaimed Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri makes a comeback, under the name Civilization 6: Alpha Centauri.

The opening video, voiced by Sigourney Weaver, uses the documentary form (with talking-head retrospective interviews of leaders) to tell the story about a colony spaceship launched from Earth to the nearest stellar system, with a mutiny causing the colonists to split between several factions, each controlling one landing pod. The starting menu's backdrop is similar to the classical Civ 4 Earth, with a duet from Léo Delibes' 19th century opera Lakmé. The soundtrack mostly consists of classical music (even Ride of the Valkyries can be heard at war-time) which blends as surprisingly well with the futurist setting as it did in Kubrick's 2001. The pastiches of early electronic music, similar to (but not quite like) Jean Michael Jarre and Vangelis, are less fascinating.

The game begins as the player chooses a faction, each with its own values, strengths and weaknesses. As in the original SMAC, the planet is strange and hostile. Terraforming takes a significant part of the colonial effort. The game mechanics contain some elements of Civ 6, such as hexagonal tiles, and a basic resource named Discipline. Other resources are Food, Minerals, Energy, Research and Social Capital.

The unit chassis model from original SMAC is scrapped; units can instead have extra equipment as in Civ 6, such as extra weapons and armor. As each faction expands, rogue colonists appear from stranded escape pods, or escaping from overpopulated colonies; corresponding to something between Barbarians, and the City-states of Civ 5 or Civ 6. As the game progresses, most rogues are assimilated into the factions.

Much of the story is told by artistic splash images with a short voice-over. The players have to fight primitive alien species such as Xenofungus and Mindworms, and each other, to achieve one of the victory conditions; Domination, Global Unification, Transcendence, or a new option called "Homecoming", where a player builds a spaceship to re-establish contact with Earth. According to original SMAC canon, this planet was devastated by nuclear war, but Civ 6: AC leaves Earth's future to the player's imagination.

The government model is also based on Civ 6. Social Capital is used to buy Doctrines; some of them contradicting each other (Private Ownership versus State Ownership). Going against a faction's values is theoretically possible, but hampers Discipline.

Civ 6: AC seems to be balanced for multiplayer. As Civ 6 put much effort to historical correctness, with balance issues that could be regarded as historically appropriate (such as the sudden population boom of Crop Rotation, lack of efficient assault units between Knights and Tanks, and the geometric growth from Capitalism), the choice between infrastructure and units in Alpha Centauri always needs to be well-weighted, or they will face classical countermeasures. A faction with Xeno-Biofuel as their only energy source, can be severely harmed by Xenocide attacks. EMP Towers are cheap, easily torn down by infantry or bombs, but can annihilate an army of War Walkers if used properly. Firaxis seems to have taken much inspiration from Starcraft, for a multi-lateral rock-paper-scissors system in a space opera.

Both the first Civ games and SMAC were before its time, and had little competition. Today, as the TBS genre gets little attention in the mainstream gaming community, Civ 6 AC shows that these deep, gently-paced games can still deliver to the mid-2010s audience.
"We have fewer ships than we did in 1916. We also have fewer horses and bayonets. We have these things called aircraft carriers and planes land on them. We have ships that go underwater, nuclear submarines." Barack Obama

The absence of a Viking civilization in Civ 5, is good news. Viking means "pirate", "warrior" or "sailor". It was a profession, never a nation or tribe; most Scandinavians around AD 1000 were farmers/fishermen, not vikings. Vikings ruled by Ragnar Lodbrok makes as much sense as replacing the English with the Yeomen ruled by Robin Hood, or the Cowboys ruled by Zorro.

Last edited by Optimizer; Oct 07, 2012 at 04:30 PM.
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Old Sep 27, 2011, 08:34 PM   #12
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Thank you Doctor Who! It revives my hope for the Civilization Franchise!
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Old Oct 14, 2011, 01:08 PM   #13
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Dumb question... it says published in 2013... that year hasn't happened yet. Is it a joke saying you're from the future or... it will be published in 2013?
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Old Nov 13, 2011, 04:49 AM   #14
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What would be more interesting?

Civilization 6: Colonization? Before Civilization 6? Or Civilization 6: Children of the Apocalypse?
"We have fewer ships than we did in 1916. We also have fewer horses and bayonets. We have these things called aircraft carriers and planes land on them. We have ships that go underwater, nuclear submarines." Barack Obama

The absence of a Viking civilization in Civ 5, is good news. Viking means "pirate", "warrior" or "sailor". It was a profession, never a nation or tribe; most Scandinavians around AD 1000 were farmers/fishermen, not vikings. Vikings ruled by Ragnar Lodbrok makes as much sense as replacing the English with the Yeomen ruled by Robin Hood, or the Cowboys ruled by Zorro.
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Old Nov 13, 2011, 10:23 AM   #15
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Yay! Siam still there, albeit, as a DLC.
Anyway, Don't really like your approach with certain things, the scrapping of 1UPT (Instead of improving it, and also becuase I LOVE ranged units!), the handling of UUs, UBs, and UAs*, (They provide each civilization some uniqueness, a more distinct identity). The Doctrine System also sounds a bit two dimensional. (I'd rather see a return of civics)

I like your idea for the interface with heroic epic (Maybe a flash of light while the interface changes, accompanied with a splash screen), the handling of research agreements, and the new discipline yield (although i'd rather have it called order, discipline just doesn't sound right for the population in general).

* I see why you don't like it in your sig, but it still make each civ unique rather than just being reskins, I don't really see how it's racist. Also noticed a mistake in your sig,
Choices should not be made in-game as response to conditions, not at the startup menu.
I assume that that not is not supposed to be there.

Last edited by sukritact; Nov 13, 2011 at 10:34 AM.
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Old Nov 22, 2011, 06:24 PM   #16
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Here is an excerpt from the Civilopedia:

Stone Age (Heroic Epic expansion)

Astrology, Civilian, can be given to a nation starting at a coastline
"The stars in the celestial heights are obedient unto thee, and the great doors of the sky open themselves before thee." / Egyptian Book of The Dead
Structure: Net
Policy: Polytheism
Effect: Allows embarkment (1 move/turn)
Civilopedia: Astrology is the belief in relationships between bodies in outer space, and events in the human world, in contrast to astronomy, which is the scientific study of these objects. Before modern times, astrology and astronomy were essentially the same, as early civilizations identified celestial objects with gods and spirits. They related the movement of these objects to events such as rain, drought, seasons, and tides. It is believed that the first "professional" astronomers were priests, and that their understanding of the "heavens" was seen as "divine", hence astronomy's ancient connection to the superstition that is now called astrology.

Copper Working, Strategic, can be given to a nation starting at a Desert
"He was the sort of person who stood on mountaintops during thunderstorms in wet copper armour shouting 'All the Gods are bastards'." / Terry Pratchett
Structure: Mine
Unit: Spearman
Resources: Gold and Copper
Civilopedia: The Copper Age, the Chalcolithic, is an archaeological period between the Stone and Bronze Ages. The history of copper metallurgy is thought to have followed the following sequence: 1) cold working of native copper, 2) annealing, 3) smelting, and 4) the lost wax method. In south-eastern Anatolia, all four of these metallurgical techniques appears more or less simultaneously at the beginning of the Neolithic c. 7500 BC. However, just as agriculture was independently invented in several parts of the world, copper smelting was invented locally in several different places. It was probably discovered independently in China before 2800 BC, in Central America perhaps around 600 AD, and in West Africa about the 9th or 10th century AD.

Record Keeping, Civilian
"When asked, 'How do you write?' I invariably answer, 'one word at a time.'" / Stephen King
Buildings: Palace, Monument
Effect: Fog of war displayed, instead of totally obscured
Civilopedia: Writing numbers for record keeping began long before the writing of language. The earliest known writing for record keeping evolved from a system of counting using small clay tokens that began in Sumer about 8000 BC. The first writing systems of the Early Bronze Age were a development based on earlier traditions of symbol systems that cannot be classified as writing proper, but have many characteristics strikingly similar to writing. They used ideographic and/or early mnemonic symbols to convey information yet were probably devoid of direct linguistic content. These systems emerged around the 7th millennium BC.

Mudbrick, Civilian
"We sit in the mud my friend, and reach for the stars." / Ivan Turgenev
Building: Walls
Structure: Road
Effect: Units can entrench
Civilopedia: A mudbrick is a fire-free brick, made of a mixture of clay, mud, sand, and water mixed with a binding material such as rice husks or straw. Mudbricks were in use in the Near East during the Pre-Pottery Neolithic B period. The Mesopotamians used sun-dried bricks in their city construction; typically these bricks were flat on the plano-convex mudbricks. In some cases brick-makers extended the life of mud bricks by putting kiln dried bricks on top or covering them with stucco.

Slash and Burn, Civilian, can be given to a nation starting at a Taiga, Forest or Jungle
"Man is the only creature that dares to light a fire and live with it. Because he alone has learned to put it out." / Henry Jackson Vandyke, Jr.
Structure: Can build Farm on any Taiga, Forest and Jungle
Policy: Scorched Earth
Resource: Incense
Civilopedia: Since Neolithic times, slash-and-burn has been widely used for converting forests into crop fields and pasture. Fire was used by hunter-gatherers since before the Neolithic, and up to present times. Clearings created by fire were made for many reasons, such as to draw game animals and to promote certain kinds of edible plants such as berries. This method was also used to prepare soil for planting crops and making the soil fertile by mixing the ashes with the soil.

Textiles, Strategic, can be given to a nation starting at a Steppe
"Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves." / Bible, Genesis
Unit: Slinger
Resources: Wool, Cotton
Civilopedia: Textiles, defined as felt or spun fibers made into yarn and subsequently netted, looped, knit or woven to make fabrics, appeared in the Middle East during the late stone age. The first actual textile, as opposed to skins sewn together, was probably felt. Surviving examples of Nålebinding, another early textile method, date from 6500 BC.

Trapping, Civilian, can be given to a nation starting at Tundra or Podsol
"The fox condemns the trap, not himself." / William Blake
Resources: Horse, Elephant, Fur
Effect: Beasts cannot enter borders
Civilopedia: Fur trapping is perhaps one of the first methods of hunting. Neolithic hunters, including the members of the Cucuteni-Trypillian culture of Romania and Ukraine (ca. 5500-2750 BC), used traps to capture their prey. A passage from the self-titled book by Taoist philosopher Zhuangzi describes Chinese methods used for trapping animals during the 4th century BC.
Ancient Age

Arithmetic, Civilian, requires Record Keeping and Astrology, facilitated by Writing and The Wheel
"Arithmetic is numbers you squeeze from your head to your hand to your pencil to your paper till you get the answer." / Carl Sandburg
Building: Courthouse
Unit: Battering Ram
Policy: Empire
Civilopedia: Arithmetic is the oldest and most elementary branch of mathematics, used by almost everyone, for tasks ranging from simple day-to-day counting to advanced science and business calculations. The earliest written records indicate the Egyptians and Babylonians used all the elementary arithmetic operations as early as 2000 BC. Early number systems that included positional notation were not decimal, including the sexagesimal (base 60) system for Babylonian numerals and the vigesimal (base 20) system that defined Maya numerals. Because of this place-value concept, the ability to reuse the same digits for different values contributed to simpler and more efficient methods of calculation.

Leather, Strategic, requires Textiles and Trapping
"The ox hide, which is soaked in fat, is pulled to and fro by men standing in a circle, thus stretching the skin and causing the fat to penetrate into the pores." / Homer's Iliad
Unit: Archer
Equipment: War Drum
Policy: Warrior Class
Civilopedia: From the earliest of our histories mankind has used animal skins for clothing and shelter. But, the skins became stiff at low temperatures and rotted in the heat. Animal fats were eventually applied to keep the skins pliable. The Assyrians used leather for footwear but also for liquid containers and as inflated floats for rafts. In ancient history, tanning was considered a noxious or "odiferous trade" and relegated to the outskirts of town. Tanneries using ancient methods are still isolated from populated areas, due to the smell.

Measurement, Civilian, Requires Arithmetic and Masonry, facilitated by Pottery
"Do not use dishonest standards when measuring length, weight or quantity." / Bible, Leviticus
Buildings: Market, Temple of Artemis
Policy: Manorialism
Civilopedia: Measurement is the process of determining the ratio of a physical quantity, such as a length, time, temperature etc., to a unit of measurement, such as the metre, second or degree Celsius. Over the course of human history, however, first for convenience and then for necessity, standards of measurement evolved so that communities would have certain common benchmarks. Laws regulating measurement were originally developed to prevent fraud in commerce.

Drama, Civilian, requires Astrology and Writing
"The ode lives upon the ideal, the epic upon the grandiose, the drama upon the real." /Victor Hugo
Building: Theater, Statue of Zeus
Policy: Leader Cult
Effect: Starts Ancient soundtrack
Civilopedia: According to the historians Oscar Brockett and Franklin Hildy, rituals typically include elements that entertain or give pleasure, such as costumes and masks as well as skilled performers. As societies grew more complex, these spectacular elements began to be acted out under non-ritualistic conditions. As this occurred, the first steps towards theatre as an autonomous activity were being taken.

Parchment, Civilian, Requires Leather and Writing
Is not this a lamentable thing, that of the skin of an innocent lamb should be made parchment? that parchment, being scribbled o’er, should undo a man? / William Shakespeare, Henry VI
Building: Great Library
Policy: Republic
Office: Mole
Civilopedia: Writing on prepared animal skins had a long history. Some Egyptian Fourth Dynasty texts were written on parchment. Though the Assyrians and the Babylonians impressed their cuneiform on clay tablets, they also wrote on parchment from the 6th century BC onward. The word parchment comes from the Greek city Pergamon. In the 2nd century B.C. a great library was set up in Pergamon that rivalled the famous Library of Alexandria. As prices rose for papyrus and the reed used for making it was over-harvested towards local extinction in the two nomes of the Nile delta that produced it, Pergamon adapted by increasing use of parchment.
Classical Age

Carpentry, Strategic, Requires Bronze Working and The Wheel, facilitated by Iron Working and Measurement
"I would never want to be a member of a group whose symbol was a guy nailed to two pieces of wood." / George Carlin
Units: War Elephant, Skirmisher
Resource: Oak
Effect: Cleared Forests give
Civilopedia: Two ancient civilizations that used woodworking were the Egyptians and the Chinese. Woodworking is depicted in many ancient Egyptian drawings, and a considerable amount of ancient Egyptian furniture (such as stools, chairs, tables, beds, chests) has been preserved in tombs. As well, the inner coffins found in the tombs were also made of wood. The metal used by the Egyptians for woodworking tools was originally copper and eventually, after 2000 BC bronze as ironworking was unknown until much later. Commonly used woodworking tools included axes, adzes, chisels, pull saws, and bow drills.

Coinage, Civilian, Requires Measurement and Bronze Working
"Authors, like coins, grow dear as they grow old: It is the rust we value, not the gold." / Alexander Pope
Policy: Mercantilism
Structure: Town
Effect: Can build Wealth
Civilopedia: A number of city-states in ancient Greece, such as Crete and Olympia, operated their own mints. Roman mints were spread widely across the Empire, and were sometimes used for propaganda purposes. The populace often learned of a new Roman Emperor when coins appeared with the new Emperor's portrait. The earliest known Chinese metal tokens were made ca. 900 BC. These were replicas in bronze of cowry shells, previously used as commodity money.

Simple Machines, Strategic, Requires Carpentry and Measurement, facilitated by Leather
"Give me a fixed point and I will move the world." / Archimedes
Unit: Catapult
Buildings: Great Wall, Petra
Structure: Fort
Civilopedia: A simple machine is a mechanical device that changes the direction or magnitude of a force. The six classical simple machines were defined by Renaissance scientists: The lever, the wheel and axle, the pulley, the inclined plane, the wedge and the screw. The idea of a "simple machine" originated with Greek philosophers Archimedes and Heron. However the Greeks' understanding was limited to the balance of static forces, and did not include motion or the concept of work.

Arch and Vault, Civilian, Requires Simple Machines and Iron Working
"The bridge is not supported by one stone or another, but by the line of the arch that they form." / Fictional quote by Marco Polo, from Invisible Cities by Italo Calvino
Building: Arena, Hagia Sophia
Effect: Roads reach across Rivers
Civilopedia: An arch is a structure that spans a space and supports a load. Arches appeared as early as the 2nd millennium BC in Mesopotamian brick architecture and their systematic use started with the Ancient Romans who were the first to apply the technique to a wide range of structures. Throughout the Roman empire, their engineers erected arch structures such as bridges, aqueducts, and gates. They also introduced the triumphal arch as a military monument. Vaults began to be used for roofing large interior spaces such as halls and temples, a function which was also assumed by domed structures from the 1st century BC onwards.

Plumbing, Civilian, Requires Arch-and-Vault and Measurement, facilitated by Calendar
"Water, air, and cleanness are the chief articles in my pharmacy." / Napoleon Bonaparte
Buildings: Aqueduct, Angkor Wat
Structure: Watermill
Effect: Farms and Windmills carry freshwater
Civilopedia: Throughout history people have devised systems to make getting and using water more convenient. The Indus Valley Civilization has early evidence of public water supply and sanitation. The Roman Empire had indoor plumbing, meaning a system of aqueducts and pipes that terminated in homes and at public wells and fountains for people to use. Rome and other nations used lead pipes, often unknowing about lead poisoning.

Glass, Civilian, Requires Pottery, facilitated by Currency and Iron Working.
"Fortune is like glass - the brighter the glitter, the more easily broken." / Publilius Syrus
Building: Ishtar Gate
Structure: Furnace
Resource: Dye
Civilopedia: Naturally occurring glass, especially the volcanic glass obsidian, has been used since the Stone Age for the production of sharp cutting tools and, due to its limited source areas, was extensively traded. The history of creating glass can be traced back to 3500 BCE in Mesopotamia. The term glass developed in the late Roman Empire. It was in the Roman glassmaking center at Trier, now in modern Germany, that the late-Latin term glesum originated, probably from a Germanic word for a transparent, lustrous substance.

Trigonometry, Civilian, requires Simple Machines and Sailing
"If the triangles made a god, they would give him three sides." / Montesquieu
Unit: Trireme
Policy: Homesteading
Wonder: Great Lighthouse
Civilopedia: Trigonometry is a branch of mathematics that studies triangles and the relationships between their sides and the angles between these sides. The ancient Greeks transformed trigonometry into an ordered science, studying the properties of chords and inscribed angles in circles, and proved theorems that are equivalent to modern trigonometric formulae. The sine function was first defined in the Surya Siddhanta, and its properties were further documented by the 5th century Indian mathematician and astronomer Aryabhata.
Medieval Age

Alchemy, Strategic, Requires Glass and Iron Working, facilitated by Measurement and Philosophy
"This process is alchemy: its founder is the smith Vulcan." / Paracelsus
Equipment: Greek Fire
Effect: Reveals Saltpeter
Civilopedia: The defining objectives of alchemy are varied; these include the creation of the fabled philosopher's stone possessing powers including the capability of turning base metals into the noble metals gold or silver, as well as an elixir of life conferring youth and immortality. The origin of Western alchemy may generally be traced to Hellenistic Egypt. Zosimos of Panopolis wrote the oldest known books on alchemy while Mary the Jewess is credited as being the first non-fictitious Western alchemist. The Islamic world was a melting pot for alchemy. Platonic and Aristotelian thought, which had already been somewhat appropriated into hermetical science, continued to be assimilated during the late 7th and early 8th centuries.

Heraldry, Strategic, Requires Coinage and Calendar
The coat-of-arms of the human race ought to consist of a man with an axe on his shoulder proceeding toward a grindstone. Or, it ought to represent the several members of the human race holding out the hat to each other. For we are all beggars. / Mark Twain
Unit: Pikeman
Policy: Career Army
Civilopedia: Heraldry is the profession, study, or art of creating, granting, and blazoning arms and ruling on questions of rank or protocol. The origins lie in the need to distinguish participants in combat when their faces were hidden by helmets. In the late Middle Ages and the Renaissance, heraldry became a highly developed discipline, regulated by professional officers of arms. As its use in jousting became obsolete, coats of arms remained popular for visually identifying a person in other ways – impressed in sealing wax on documents, carved on family tombs, and flown as a banner on country homes.

Crop Rotation, Civilian, requires Plumbing and Calendar. Facilitated by Alchemy and Horse Tack.
"Where grows?—where grows it not? If vain our toil, We ought to blame the culture, not the soil." / Alexander Pope, An Essay on Man
Building: Taj Mahal
Structure: Windmill
Equipment: Winter Gear
Resource: Coffee
Civilopedia: Crop rotation is the practice of growing a series of dissimilar types of crops in the same area in sequential seasons. In Europe, since the times of Charlemagne, there was a transition from a two-field crop rotation to a three-field crop rotation. Under a two-field rotation, half the land was planted in a year while the other half lay fallow. Then, in the next year, the two fields were reversed. Under three-field rotation, the land was divided into three parts. One section was planted in the Autumn with winter wheat or rye. The next Spring, the second field was planted with other crops such as peas, lentils, or beans and the third field was left fallow. The three fields were rotated in this manner so that every three years, a field would rest and be unplanted.

Algebra, Civilian, Requires Philosophy and Trigonometry
"The most powerful single idea in mathematics is the notion of a variable." / K. Dewdney
Unit: Crossbowman
Building: Spiral Minaret
Office: Bank
Civilopedia: Algebra is the branch of mathematics concerning the study of the rules of operations and relations, and the constructions and concepts arising from them, including terms, polynomials, equations and algebraic structures. Together with geometry, analysis, topology, combinatorics, and number theory, algebra is one of the main branches of pure mathematics. While the word algebra comes from the Arabic language and much of its methods from Arabic/Islamic mathematics, its roots can be traced to earlier traditions, which had a direct influence on Muhammad ibn Mūsā al-Khwārizmī (c. 780–850). He later wrote The Compendious Book on Calculation by Completion and Balancing, which established algebra as a mathematical discipline that is independent of geometry and arithmetic.

Scholasticism, Civilian, Requires Philosophy and Paper
"Constant and frequent questioning is the first key to wisdom … For through doubting we are led to inquire, and by inquiry we perceive the truth." / Peter Abelard
Buildings: University, Apostolic Palace
Policy: Theocracy
Civilopedia: Scholasticism is a method of critical thought which dominated teaching at universities in Europe from about 1100–1500, and a program of employing that method in articulating and defending orthodoxy in an increasingly pluralistic context. It originated from Christian monastic schools. Not so much a philosophy or a theology as a method of learning, scholasticism places a strong emphasis on dialectical reasoning to extend knowledge by inference, and to resolve contradictions.

Horse Tack, Strategic, Requires Horseback Riding and Iron Working, facilitated by Simple Machines
"She who waits for her knight must remember - she will have to clean up after his horse." / Unknown
Units: Lancer, Knight (with Fining), Cuirassier (with Musket), Hussar (with Replaceable Parts)
Effects: Ranch can spawn livestock
Policy: Holy War
Civilopedia: Tack is any of the various equipment and accessories worn by horses in the course of their use as domesticated animals. The stirrup, which gives greater stability to a rider, has been described as one of the most significant inventions in the history of warfare, prior to gunpowder. As a tool allowing expanded use of horses in warfare, the stirrup is often called the third revolutionary step in equipment, after the chariot and the saddle.

Clockworks, Civilian, Requires Arch-and-Vault and Algebra, facilitated by Philosophy
"Time is money." / Benjamin Franklin, Advice to Young Tradesmen
Units: Caravel, Trebuchet
Policy: Work Ethic
Civilopedia: The first recorded clock was built by the future Pope Sylvester II for the German town of Magdeburg, around the year 996. During the Middle Ages, clocks were primarily used for religious purposes; the first employed for secular timekeeping emerged around the 15th century. A clock with a minutes dial is mentioned in a 1475 manuscript, and clocks indicating minutes and seconds existed in Germany around the same time.

Fining, Strategic, Requires Alchemy and Coinage
"Do not wait to strike till the iron is hot; but make it hot by striking." / William Butler Yeats
Unit: Maceman, Knight (with Horse Tack)
Equipment: Sapper
Building: Porcelain Tower
Civilopedia: During antiquity, iron ore could not be heated to its melting point, since molten iron, also known as pig iron, is too hard and brittle to forge. Since the Late Middle Ages, various fining methods have evolved, that transformed pig iron into tougher and more malleable wrought iron, or steel. Since then, iron ore has been processed in large scale in blast furnaces, producing pig iron for processing into wrought iron for tools and weapons. In the 19th century, scientists learned that brittleness in iron is caused by carbon, and new processes allowed pig iron to reach just the right quantity of carbon to produce steel, rendering wrought iron obsolete.

Last edited by Optimizer; Dec 12, 2013 at 08:13 AM.
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Old Nov 25, 2011, 09:02 PM   #17
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This is amazing! Nice work i Hope 2K and Firaxis make Civ 6 like this if they did it would be AWESOME! You should seriously consider sending them these reviews to give them some creative ideas.
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Old Nov 27, 2011, 09:56 AM   #18
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Early Modern technologies


Musket, Strategic, Requires Gunpowder and Clockworks
"The end move in politics is always to pick up a gun." / R. Buckminster Fuller
Units: Musketman, Cuirassier (with Horse Tack)
Policy: Gun Rights
Civilopedia: A musket is a muzzle-loaded, smooth bore long gun, fired from the shoulder. The musket replaced the arquebus, and was in turn replaced by the rifle (in both cases, after a long period of coexistence). The term "musket" is applied to a variety of weapons, including the long, heavy guns with matchlock or wheel lock and loose powder fired with the gun barrel resting on a stand, and also lighter weapons with Snaphance, flintlock or caplock and bullets using a stabilizing spin (Minié ball), affixed with a bayonet.

Acoustics, Civilian, Requires Plumbing and Scholasticism
"Without music, life would be a mistake." / Friedrich Nietzsche
Buildings: Opera House, S:t Basil's Cathedral
Policy: Federation
Effect: Launches Early-Modern soundtrack
Civilopedia: The physical understanding of acoustical processes advanced rapidly during and after the Scientific Revolution. Mainly Galileo Galilei (1564–1642) but also Marin Mersenne (1588–1648), independently, discovered the complete laws of vibrating strings (completing what Pythagoras and Pythagoreans had started 2000 years earlier). Galileo wrote "Waves are produced by the vibrations of a sonorous body, which spread through the air, bringing to the tympanum of the ear a stimulus which the mind interprets as sound", a remarkable statement that points to the beginnings of physiological and psychological acoustics. Experimental measurements of the speed of sound in air were carried out successfully between 1630 and 1680.

Anatomy, Civilian, Requires Horse Tack and Crop Rotation
"The toe bone's connected to the foot bone,
The foot bone's connected to the leg bone,
The leg bone connected to the knee bone..."
/ Traditional Spiritual song, melody by James Weldon Johnson
Building: Boot Camp
Equipment: Surgeon
Wonder: Sistine Chapel
Resource: Quinine
Civilopedia: The development of anatomy extends from the earliest examinations of sacrificial victims. A succession of researchers proceeded to refine the body of anatomical knowledge, giving their names to a number of anatomical structures along the way. The 16th and 17th centuries also witnessed significant advances in the understanding of the circulatory system, as the purpose of valves in veins was identified, the left-to-right ventricle flow of blood through the circulatory system was described, and the hepatic veins were identified as a separate portion of the circulatory system.

Telescope, Civilian, Requires Clockworks and Compass
"At whose sight all the stars, Hide their diminish'd heads." / John Milton, Paradise Lost
Unit: Ship of the Line (with Gunpowder)
Equipment: Spyglass
Policy: Reason
Effect: Embarked units can cross ocean
Civilopedia: A telescope is an instrument that aids in the observation of remote objects by collecting electromagnetic radiation (such as visible light). The first known practical telescopes were invented in the Netherlands at the beginning of the 17th century, using glass lenses. They found use in terrestrial applications and astronomy. Within a few decades, the reflecting telescope was invented, which used mirrors. In the 20th century many new types of telescopes were invented, including radio telescopes in the 1930s and infrared telescopes in the 1960s. The word telescope now refers to a wide range of instruments detecting different regions of the electromagnetic spectrum, and in some cases other types of detectors.

Calculus, Civilian, Requires Scholasticism and Clockworks
"Science is a differential equation. Religion is a boundary condition." / Alan Turing
Policy: Capitalism
Wonder: Versailles
Effect: Can acquire Economic Map (including cities & structures) from other civilizations
Civilopedia: Calculus, historically known as infinitesimal calculus, is a mathematical discipline focused on limits, functions, derivatives, integrals, and infinite series. Ideas leading up to the notions of function, derivative, and integral were developed throughout the 17th century, but the decisive step was made by Isaac Newton and Gottfried Leibniz.

Mechanics, Strategic, requires Telescope and Calculus, facilitated by Acoustics
"All science is either physics or stamp collecting." / Ernest Rutherford
Units: Frigate (with Gunpowder), Fusilier (with Musket)
Equipment: Bayonet
Effect: Wharf gets 1 Merchant slot
Civilopedia: Isaac Newton was the first to unify the three laws of motion, and to prove that these laws govern both earthly and celestial objects. After Newton, re-formulations progressively allowed solutions to a far greater number of problems. The first was in 1788 by Joseph Louis Lagrange, an Italian-French mathematician. In Lagrangian mechanics the solution uses the path of least action and follows the calculus of variations.

Geology, Civilian, Requires Gunpowder and Mechanics, facilitated by Chemistry
"We learn geology the morning after the earthquake." / Ralph Waldo Emerson
Unit: Submersible
Structure: Canal
Office: Prospector
Resource: Coal
Promotion: Geographer III
Civilopedia: The word geology was first used by Ulisse Aldrovandi in 1603. Nicolas Steno (1638–1686) is credited with the law of superposition, the principle of original horizontality, and the principle of lateral continuity: three defining principles of stratigraphy. In 1785 James Hutton presented a paper entitled Theory of the Earth where he explained his theory that the Earth must be much older than had previously been supposed, in order to allow enough time for mountains to be eroded and for sediments to form new rocks at the bottom of the sea, which in turn were raised up to become dry land.

Sociology, Requires Printing Press and Acoustics, Civilian
"Strange, Is the change, They're trying to arrange, Today in sociology. Fanatics, In their attics, Are learning mathematics, Just for sociology." / Tom Lehrer
Policy: Nationalism
Building: Prison
Promotion: Police II
Effect: Advanced demographics
Civilopedia: Sociology is the scientific study of society. It is a social science which uses various methods of empirical investigation and critical analysis to develop a body of knowledge about human social activity. It was first coined in 1780 by the French essayist Emmanuel-Joseph Sieyès. Sociology was later defined independently by the French philosopher of science, Auguste Comte, who had earlier used the term "social physics". Comte endeavoured to unify history, psychology and economics through the scientific understanding of the social realm.
Industrial technologies

Metric System, Requires Replaceable Parts and Geology
"The metric system did not really catch on in the States, unless you count the increasing popularity of the nine-millimeter bullet." / Dave Barry.
Unit: Rifleman
Policy: Socialism
Effect: Lower equipment costs
Civilopedia: The metric system is an internationally agreed decimal system of measurement that was originally based on the mètre des Archives and the kilogramme des Archives introduced by France in 1799. The term is now often used as a synonym for "SI" or the "International System of Units". The metric system has been officially sanctioned for use in the United States since 1866, but it remains the only industrialised country that has not adopted the metric system as its official system of measurement. Although the United Kingdom uses the metric system for most official purposes, the use of the imperial system of measure is widespread.

Germ Theory, Requires Biology and Chemistry, Civilian
"For the first half of geological time our ancestors were bacteria. Most creatures still are bacteria, and each one of our trillions of cells is a colony of bacteria." / Richard Dawkins
Building: Hospital
Policy: Civil Rights
Effects: No attrition from Floodplains
Civilopedia: The germ theory of disease, also called the pathogenic theory of medicine, is a theory that proposes that micro-organisms are the cause of many diseases. Although highly controversial when first proposed, germ theory was validated in the late 19th century and is now a fundamental part of modern medicine and clinical microbiology, leading to such important innovations as antibiotics and hygienic practices.

Psychology, Strategic, Requires Germ Theory and Sociology, facilitated by Electricity
"Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves." / Carl Gustav Jung
Policy: Sexual Revolution
Wonder: Cristo Redentor
Effect: Spies become more powerful
Promotion: Police III
Civilopedia: Psychology is largely defined as "the study of behavior and mental processes". Philosophical interest in the mind and behavior dates back to the ancient civilizations of Egypt, Greece, China and India. Predating Sigmund Freud and Carl Jung by nearly 1000 years, psychotherapy was performed by Islamic physicians on those with mental illness in psychiatric hospitals built as early as the 8th century in Fez, Morocco. Psychology as a self-conscious field of experimental study began in 1879, when Wilhelm Wundt founded the first laboratory dedicated exclusively to psychological research in Leipzig. Wundt was also the first person to refer to himself as a psychologist and wrote the first textbook on psychology.

Thermodynamics, Requires Chemistry and Geology, facilitated by Steam Power, Civilian
"Nothing in life is certain except death, taxes and the second law of thermodynamics." / Seth Lloyd in Nature
Unit: Airship
Equipment: Sniper
Resource: Oil
Civilopedia: Thermodynamics is a physical science that studies the transfer of heat between bodies, and defines the concepts of energy and entropy. The first thermodynamic textbook was written in 1859 by William Rankine, originally trained as a physicist and a civil and mechanical engineering professor at the University of Glasgow. The first and second laws of thermodynamics emerged simultaneously in the 1850s, primarily out of the works of William Rankine, Rudolf Clausius, and William Thomson (Lord Kelvin).

Explosives, Requires Thermodynamics and Musket, Strategic
"My dynamite will sooner lead to peace than a thousand world conventions." / Alfred Nobel
Building: Mount Rushmore
Policy: Strategic Bombing
Unit: Artillery
Equipment: AA Gun
Effect: Saltpeter can be used to build Structures
Civilopedia: Though early thermal weapons, such as Greek fire, have existed since ancient times, the first widely used explosive in warfare and mining was black powder, invented in 9th century China. This material was sensitive to water, and evolved lots of dark smoke. Dynamite was invented by Alfred Nobel and was the first safely manageable explosive stronger than black powder. The invention was celebrated by anarchists, who recognized its suitability for propaganda by the deed.
"We have fewer ships than we did in 1916. We also have fewer horses and bayonets. We have these things called aircraft carriers and planes land on them. We have ships that go underwater, nuclear submarines." Barack Obama

The absence of a Viking civilization in Civ 5, is good news. Viking means "pirate", "warrior" or "sailor". It was a profession, never a nation or tribe; most Scandinavians around AD 1000 were farmers/fishermen, not vikings. Vikings ruled by Ragnar Lodbrok makes as much sense as replacing the English with the Yeomen ruled by Robin Hood, or the Cowboys ruled by Zorro.

Last edited by Optimizer; Dec 27, 2013 at 05:48 PM.
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Old Dec 09, 2011, 04:33 PM   #19
Alsark's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Fort Wayne, Indiana
Posts: 782
Originally Posted by Chadwiick View Post
Is it a joke saying you're from the future
... Who says it's a joke?
"An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind."
           - Mahatma Gandhi

My political compass (Liberal Leftist [Gandhi])
Economic Left/Right: -5.88
Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -1.23
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Old Dec 11, 2011, 08:21 PM   #20
Rajah of Minyue
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Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: New York City
Posts: 935
Gender: Male
I assume the Vanilla 15 would be 1. Spain 2. Russia (led by Catherine, again) 3. Egypt 4. England
5. America 6. Arabia 7. Aztec 8. China 9. France 10. Germany 11. Greece 12. India (please no Gandhi) 13. Japan 14. Rome 15. Iroquois (or something else)

then the Expansions and DLCS would add
Bengal (curious choice, who would lead?)
Indonesia (based on Majapahit, I assume)
Siam (no Khmer, then)


Congo (led by Nzinga Mbande)

Brazil (????)

Harappans (you have to make up a leader)
Ethiopia (poor Ethiopia, all forgotten...)

Where would Babylon, Inca, Denmark/Scandinavia, Polynesia (not sure what you think of this civ)
Byzantine, Celts, Mayan, Zulu belong?
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