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Civ 6 vs. Civ 5 in regards to future 7

stealth_nsk

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I've recently returned to Civ5 after playing Civ6 for a long time and it was totally new perspective, especially considering potential release of Civ7. Some observations:

1. Civ5 and Civ6 take concept of playing the land differently. While Civ6 great job at spreading cities with on-map districts and wonders, it sacrifices the importance of resources, especially bonus ones, which you often just destroy to leave space. Combining both worlds could be great - districts and wonders require planning, while focusing on particular resource types could require adopting your playstyle to the land. To make both work, the game needs some ways to encourage more sparse city positioning, like:
- No district adjacency bonuses from other districts (which encourages building cities nearby)
- More value from regular resource usage
- Less districts per city (also helps with specialization)
- Some other ways to implement bonuses from area affecting buildings like Factories. For example, Entertainment complex buildings could produce specific amenities for limited number of cities per building
- Probably some wonders built on top of resources, like Ruhr Valley which could be built on top of Coal and serve as mine in addition to wonder
- If nothing else works, city radius (or just minimal distance between cities) could be increased

2. Speaking about resources, I like how Civ5 pantheons play with them even more than those of Civ6. But pantheon is just a single thing in the whole game. It would be cool to see more similar elements, something like Policy cards (or whatever Civ7 will have instead) to play around particular resources, further specializing the civilization and forcing adopting various gameplay styles.

3. Civ5 workers - I really like them. They are part of the flow "there's always something happening in your civilization", even if you're at peace and manually constructing road network is really fun. Sure, to work that way, they need some space (see point 1), but also there could be some more work for workers with upgradable improvements. Roads to railroads already work that way in Civ5, but I believe other improvements could also have at least 1 upgrade without bloating the game too much.

4. Civ5 wide vs. tall is surely overtuned towards tall and increased culture cost of policies is not fun. But I really like the beauty and simplicity of Civ5 global happiness. Could be cool to see similar system in play.
 
Civ5 workers - I really like them. They are part of the flow "there's always something happening in your civilization", even if you're at peace and manually constructing road network is really fun. Sure, to work that way, they need some space (see point 1), but also there could be some more work for workers with upgradable improvements. Roads to railroads already work that way in Civ5, but I believe other improvements could also have at least 1 upgrade without bloating the game too much.
Strange. Even though I prefer V to VI, I feel VI's limited-charge builders are better. The fact is that improvements only cost time to build in V, so once you finish improvements for worked tiles and resources you can just go on improving every tile in your territory. Which feels too 'loose' to me. VI is more 'tight' in that regard, as Builders have only three build charges, so you are confronted with a choice of which tiles to improve. Unlike V, the cost is greater than VI: in V the other improvements are just built later, in VI you have to train a new Builder, taking up a valuable production queue. I like the VI approach as you have to be more careful and tactical in your planning
 
Strange. Even though I prefer V to VI, I feel VI's limited-charge builders are better. The fact is that improvements only cost time to build in V, so once you finish improvements for worked tiles and resources you can just go on improving every tile in your territory. Which feels too 'loose' to me. VI is more 'tight' in that regard, as Builders have only three build charges, so you are confronted with a choice of which tiles to improve. Unlike V, the cost is greater than VI: in V the other improvements are just built later, in VI you have to train a new Builder, taking up a valuable production queue. I like the VI approach as you have to be more careful and tactical in your planning

Those are different types of choices. Civ6 is about which tiles to improve, while Civ5 is about which improvement to use. I wouldn't say it's implemented perfectly, but things like Farm vs. Trading Post could be quite fun if done right. And with improvements upgrading at different techs, you could actually change improvements on already improved tiles to get better output
 
I actually think the resource system is what should be changed in civ 7, rather than having less urbanism (districts, although I've got a different approach to those too).
Resources should belong to areas rather than individual tiles. Discovering a new food resource yield +1 food across 4 cities, controlling a tile that is part of that resources area yields +2 food in all of your cities. The deer/kangaroo/cattle/sheep etc appear to just roam around the map inside their 'region'. You can extend that logic to metals as well (obviously they don't roam around the map, but they do tend to be found in regions rather than specific places).

I go back and fourth on civ 5 happiness. I like happiness leads to golden ages more than era score, but I prefer cities having individual happiness....
 
I've always liked Civ 5 better than 6, which is why I returned to it a couple of years ago. There are certainly things about 6 I like, but I find it very hard to play these days. The three main problems I have with it are:
1. A severe lack of interaction between the many systems. There is so much content here, and so many systems, but they just seems haphazardly piled on top of each other. One example is the World Congress, which is almost completely separated from regular diplomacy. In Civ 5, the other civs will understand whether you are acting for or against them in congress, and respond accordingly.
2. A lack of refinement of systems. Many of them are just bad. The aforementioned World Congress is maybe the worst of them. Random resolutions are ridiculous, and you are not even in full control of what you yourself are voting for, thanks to the separation of action (A vs B) and target. Another example is the government system. There's no immersion, no sense that you are forming your society, just swapping in and out bonuses as needed...which just amounts more micro management. Civ 5 didn't really have a government system, but Civ 4 had a nice one...which was based on an even better one from Alpha Centauri.
3. A crushing amount of mid- to late game micro management. It is a common problem with 4X games, but few are as bad as Civ 6. The large number of chores - small tasks you need to do, but which have increasingly insignificant impact - is probably the worst part of the game for me. Some of the problem, but not all, has to do with districts. I actually like districts in general, it's a lot of fun in the early game. It does get in the way later on though, especially with how wide the game encourages you to play. It took a long time before we got production queues, and when they did finally come, the didn't work nearly as well as in Civ 5.

Of course...while I think Civ 5 is better overall, Civ 5 with Vox Populi is far superior, and it fixes some of the main complaints people have about regular 5. In particular, the balance between wide and tall is much less rigid, and the different social policy trees are more balanced. Now, I don't think the "4 city Tradition" meta was quite as rigid in 5 as some would have it...I usually ended up with 5 to 7 cities myself, but with VP, I find that my choice to expand is usually down to whether I have the happiness and resources to support and defend the new city, weighed against my need for resources and territorial control. The resource monopoly system is terrific, by the way.
 
If anything, starting back from Civ4 would be my secret wish. Yet I know that won't be the case and I learnt to live with it. 😀

Same here

Go back to 4, incorporate the things from 6 that I felt were good additions (builders and Barbarian Clans), streamline the Doomstack problem with 3 UPT stacking, and have a system like Civ3 where individual pops had a cultural identity
 
I've always liked Civ 5 better than 6, which is why I returned to it a couple of years ago. There are certainly things about 6 I like, but I find it very hard to play these days. The three main problems I have with it are:
1. A severe lack of interaction between the many systems. There is so much content here, and so many systems, but they just seems haphazardly piled on top of each other. One example is the World Congress, which is almost completely separated from regular diplomacy. In Civ 5, the other civs will understand whether you are acting for or against them in congress, and respond accordingly.
2. A lack of refinement of systems. Many of them are just bad. The aforementioned World Congress is maybe the worst of them. Random resolutions are ridiculous, and you are not even in full control of what you yourself are voting for, thanks to the separation of action (A vs B) and target. Another example is the government system. There's no immersion, no sense that you are forming your society, just swapping in and out bonuses as needed...which just amounts more micro management. Civ 5 didn't really have a government system, but Civ 4 had a nice one...which was based on an even better one from Alpha Centauri.
3. A crushing amount of mid- to late game micro management. It is a common problem with 4X games, but few are as bad as Civ 6. The large number of chores - small tasks you need to do, but which have increasingly insignificant impact - is probably the worst part of the game for me. Some of the problem, but not all, has to do with districts. I actually like districts in general, it's a lot of fun in the early game. It does get in the way later on though, especially with how wide the game encourages you to play. It took a long time before we got production queues, and when they did finally come, the didn't work nearly as well as in Civ 5.

Of course...while I think Civ 5 is better overall, Civ 5 with Vox Populi is far superior, and it fixes some of the main complaints people have about regular 5. In particular, the balance between wide and tall is much less rigid, and the different social policy trees are more balanced. Now, I don't think the "4 city Tradition" meta was quite as rigid in 5 as some would have it...I usually ended up with 5 to 7 cities myself, but with VP, I find that my choice to expand is usually down to whether I have the happiness and resources to support and defend the new city, weighed against my need for resources and territorial control. The resource monopoly system is terrific, by the way.
Interesting.

I've put in hundreds of hours in both Civ V and VI, but I havn't played Civ V at all since I purchased Civ VI near release. Now that Civ VI is basically feature complete, perhaps I should fire up Civ V again with a fresh set of eyes.
 
Civ VI got boring for me very quickly. To me the problem is that it's not quite as immersive as Civ V, the characters feel really hollow in VI, like they have no real personality.

For AI the options are "plays to win no matter the cost" and "plays the character" (if you know what I mean?)

And for VI the AI is more like the first than second but they really suck at the first even then!
They hardly try to win at lower difficulties, which really confuses me.
I wish the VI AI tried to win as much as they do on Deity but with no cheats, whenever I select Prince for example. But they don't.
They did this in Civ V, AND had a tangible personality. So what's the idea? Not sure.

Even so, the more I play either game the more I see either of their strengths and weaknesses

EDIT: I really have so much fun with CivV ideology and World Congress systems. As simple as they are. They're still better than VI World Congress.
 
If I had to talk niceties about Civ6 I would that I actually like the art of the game. It feels really polished and overall consistent. They put a lot of effort in those Victory movies.
Something between Civ6 art and Civ5 art would be the best.

From older titles, I want the stupid advisors and the palace and all those little bells and jingles
 
No they did not.
They presented a far greater threat on lower difficulties than the Civ6 AI. Eg. Alexander would expand like hell and befriend all the city states in an aggressive way that made him feel like a threat.
You would actually get invaded in Civ5 at lower difficulties.

I suppose "trying to win" is an exaggeration but the point is they were obstacles and not bystanders
 
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I actually think the resource system is what should be changed in civ 7, rather than having less urbanism (districts, although I've got a different approach to those too).
Resources should belong to areas rather than individual tiles. Discovering a new food resource yield +1 food across 4 cities, controlling a tile that is part of that resources area yields +2 food in all of your cities. The deer/kangaroo/cattle/sheep etc appear to just roam around the map inside their 'region'. You can extend that logic to metals as well (obviously they don't roam around the map, but they do tend to be found in regions rather than specific places).

I go back and fourth on civ 5 happiness. I like happiness leads to golden ages more than era score, but I prefer cities having individual happiness....

I think the monopolies mode in 6 helped bring out a little more desire to get resources, but yeah, the overall resource setup in 6 definitely is a bit stale. Sure, if you have a riverside city a rice tile can make a nice farmed tile without the need for a triangle, or a few other specific cases you can get a nice bonus, more often than not, when I see a stone tile I think "oh yay I wonder what I will chop that into" rather than actually wanting to develop and use it. Or searching it out because I need that health point like resources in 4. It doesn't have to happen like those other versions, but yeah, give me some good reasons to look for stuff. Maybe you even have like a "tall vs wide" resource view. So like have each different resource type give you some health or production to your cities (like luxuries give amenities), but maybe you also have something where like the more copies of a resource in your empire or an area you have developed, you get like a "monopoly" bonus on them. So like maybe if you have 2 wheat tiles improved on the same continent they each get a bonus +1 food, if you have 3 then they give +1 food to each surrounding farm, etc... It would be really neat if you like were spreading around a continent, and basically build around enough sheep that you end up feeding your whole empire with sheep, and maybe let you either "plant" sheep on random grassland tiles, or at least let you just randomly put pastures down on them, and really develop your empire that way. And another game you find all the rice nearby and really develop into a farming civilization.
 
Regardless of civ version, all the good ones share the same traits:
1. mechanics need to be simple and built in comprehensible layers
2. all mechanics should be equally relevant from T1 to T300
3. however combat and units work, we should have the feeling of "we have an army", "we have a navy", "we have an airforce"
4. winning conditions should reflect the way you built your empire. A really large empire should have a "really large empire winning condition" etc.
5. Leaders should be focused on diplomacy, not on how you play the game. In a sense, they should react differently on however you choose to play that particular the game. No leader game mechanics changes please.
 
The big problem with Civ VI is they basically abandoned the AI in favour of multiplayer "events" or superficial features that don't really mean anything. They simply stopped caring whether the AI could understand new features because human players could and this became a multiplayer game with single player tacked on instead of the other way around.

Add to that the fact that full proper modding was never made possible and you have planned obsolescence so they don't repeat the "mistake" of a game that can continue on it's own forcing people to move on to Civ VII. This is why both Civ V and Civ IV are superior and longer lasting.... most likely by design.

On the other hand Civ VI was clearly an exercise in experimentation and social pandering.... I have low hopes for Civ VII.
 
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Personally I can't really subscribe to the notion that civ 5 was better than 6. I liked civ 5, and some features were better (World Congress, ideology, ai aggressiveness, art style), but civ 6 is just superior and has much higher replay value imo. Played some civ 5 some months ago and tried experimenting with different playstyles other than 4 city tall tradition, and it's so not worth it in most cases. Cities are also way less interesting without districts, and its generally very noticeable how civ 6 improved a lot of the gameplay.
 
As general rules yes but I think this rule can be broken sometimes. For example while I really like the adjacent system in civ 6 it should not be as important late in the game as in the early game.
Other stuff as well. A pollution system can’t be very relevant in the beginning of the game. An ideology system like Civ 5 has is a great way to shake up the end game and makes little sense earlier. Espionage also makes more sense to increase in relevance as the game progresses.

Overall I think having different systems kick in or gear up as the game progresses makes a lot of sense. Not only in terms of accuracy but in that the late game just needs that kick in the pants.
 
Other stuff as well. A pollution system can’t be very relevant in the beginning of the game. An ideology system like Civ 5 has is a great way to shake up the end game and makes little sense earlier. Espionage also makes more sense to increase in relevance as the game progresses.

Overall I think having different systems kick in or gear up as the game progresses makes a lot of sense. Not only in terms of accuracy but in that the late game just needs that kick in the pants.
Also, generally the in-game systems and situation should get more complex as the game progresses, and Civilizations get larger and start impacting each other more, governments and their systems (bureaucracies) get more complex - all of that should be reflected in both more problems and more 'solutions' to the problems.

Things like Ideologies, changing attitudes towards Religion, problems with Industrialization (in addition to the Ideology manifestation from it) changing requirements in regard to Resources strategic, luxury and bonus, growing population and all its accompanying problems - the gamer should feel just short of overwhelmed at times in the late game instead of bored which is all too often the feeling now.
 
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