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PolyCast Episode 234: "Embargo Lifted"

Discussion in 'CivBE - General Discussions' started by DanQ, Aug 2, 2015.

  1. DanQ

    DanQ Chieftain

    Oct 24, 2000
    Ontario, Canada
    Timing is everything. The two-hundred-and-thirty-fourth episode of PolyCast, "Embargo Lifted", features regular co-hosts Daniel "DanQ" Quick, "Makahlua", Philip "TheMeInTeam" Bellew and "MadDjinn" with returning guest co-host Tom "dojoboy" Herring. It carries a runtime of 59m59s.

    The summary of topics is as follows:

    - 02m52s | News
    A first, second and third official video for Civilization Beyond Earth: Rising Tide surface alongside three first-hand previews.
    - 38m38s | Open Mic
    Responding to an inquiry from "OneCrazyCanadia" asking for "good ideas" for scenarios in CivBE.
    - 40m55s | Forum Talk
    A suggestion for expanding Civilization diplomacy to include a counterbalance to the denunciation mechanic gains traction, followed by a claim that a Civilization VI has not been delayed by the CivBE expansion Rising Tide (45m59s; recorded for Episode 231).
    - 50m45s | Miscellaneous
    Where the Civilization IV theme ranks on a countdown of "Top 10 Video Game Menu Themes" (recorded for Episode 230), where the Civ series in general finds itself on a comparable list of "Top 10 Video Games With Steep Learning Curves" (51m00s; recorded for Episode 231) and civs that become one's first target upon discovery (54m33s; recorded for Episode 231).

    - Intro/Outro | Miscellaneous
    Record setting and adapting to expectations.

    Recording live before a listening audience every other Saturday, PolyCast is a bi-weekly audio production in an ongoing effort to give the Civ community an interactive voice on game strategy; listeners are encouraged to follow the show on Twitter, and check out the YouTube channel for caption capability. Sibling show RevCast focuses on Civilization: Revolution, ModCast on Civ modding, SCivCast on Civ social gaming and TurnCast on Civ multiplay.
  2. megabearsfan

    megabearsfan Chieftain

    Jan 17, 2006
    Las Vegas, NV
    Definitely agree that Dark Souls* probably doesn't have the hardest learning curve of any game ever (Demon's Souls** and Bloodborne*** are both harder anyway). The game does have a tutorial that goes over basic mechanics, and the controls and mechanics are not that difficult or complicated. True, you do have to figure things out for yourself, and you will die alot, so the curve is steep, but it isn't very tall (i.e. there isn't that much to learn). Once you get good at parrying and rolling, and learn how to upgrade your weapons and armor with titanite, you are set for pretty much the rest of the game.

    I also disagree with Civ being on this list of steep learning curves. I always thought that Civ had a very gentle learning curve considering the scope and scale of the game. I even made a note of this in my Beyond Earth review**** of how the tech web and exploration mechanics actually give BE a much harder learning curve than Civ V. Civ (V in particular) is very good about starting the player out small and then slowly building up mechanics one at a time as they become relevant. The game tutorializes itself just by playing it!

    You start with your one settler and one warrior. You learn how to move units and found a city right there on turn 0. You pick a tech project and a construction project (of which you only have a handful of choices). Then you spend a few turns moving your warrior around. Maybe you find some goody huts, get yourself some culture or faith, and those mechanics are opened up to you now that they have become relevant. Eventually, you meet another civ, and diplomacy activates, but you start out at a neutral position. I always thought that this was very simple, elegant design, and it would really surprise me to find out that people actually have a hard time figuring out the basics of how the game works.

    Now compare this to the overwhelming amount of information that is thrown at you the moment you boot up a Europa Universalis game. You already have control of a whole country. You have armies (some of which may already be fighting wars when the game starts). Tax revenues start popping up all over the screen. A dozen or so cities immediately need build orders. Like a dozen fields of research are immediately open to you. You have an established religion. You have established diplomatic relations with other nations. It's like being thrown right into the middle of a game of Civ. That series should've gotten into this list; not Civ. Total War kinda fits in between these two franchises. I can handle Civ and Total War, but Europa Universalis is still too overwhelming for me. I've booted it up a few times, but have no clue what I'm doing...

    * Dark Souls review: http://www.megabearsfan.net/post/2012/04/04/Dark-Souls-review.aspx
    ** Demon's Souls review: http://www.megabearsfan.net/post/2014/11/18/Demons-Souls-game-review.aspx
    *** Bloodborne review: http://www.megabearsfan.net/post/2015/05/07/Bloodborne-game-review.aspx
    ****Civ BE review: http://www.megabearsfan.net/post/2014/12/12/Civilization-Beyond-Earth-game-review.aspx
  3. kipwheeler

    kipwheeler Chieftain

    May 25, 2014
    I'd also agree with the posters who say the Civ games have a fairly easy learning curve. (I'm thinking in comparison to EVE online, which I was playing around 2008, and found it a bit brutal in the learning curve--especially in PvP).

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