This is my first post on this forum. So I would like to provide a little bit of information about myself. My name is Kaan, I am 29 and I live in Istanbul. I have been playing civilization since I was about 10. I've played everything from Advanced Civilization, Civ I, Civ II, Civ III, CtP, Civ IV, Rhye's and now CiV. I am not the best player I suppose, I typically play on Prince and sometimes I don't even win. I'm generally a peacefull guy who concentrates on science and culture. The following are my thoughts on Civilization V. Graphics and Aesthetics: While I adore the new hex system and it does provide for great looking terrain, I am somewhat disappointed at the rendering of the layers above it. I have the following qualms: - Why are nearly all wonders built outside of the city? The Machu Pichu is brilliant but the developers seemed to have flaked on the positioning of most of the others. The Sistine Chapel, Hagia Sophia, and Notre Dame, to name a few, should be inside the city, not at it's borders and certainly not outside the city and definitely not on water. The Oracle might be excused for being at the outskirts of the city but again not outside it and definitely not on water. And shouldn't the Pyramids be built on desert and Stonehenge on hills? Ultimately a city with more than a two wonders ends up looking like crap. - Trading posts are ugly, and they take up way too much space. They don't seem to improve much in appearance over the ages. I think trailer park would be a more apt name for this improvement. Also lumber mills and more so mines are eye sores. Though especially with the latter I suppose this is realistic, no so much in the early ages though. While a stone quary might have a visual impact in the clasical era, a gold or iron mine would not. - Roads should taper off when they aren't connected, not go in some random direction and halt abruptly. But even worse are junctions. I am forced to build 60degree junctions for the sake of aesthetics. The loops are too wide and there is unnecessary curvature. That being said I do like the new 3d look of roads through forest and jungle. - There are issues particularly around rivers. The corners of farms and wonders will often cut off a river and give them a rather odd apperance. In addition randomly improvements of all kind seem to take quite a while to render at all, or render wrong. Also very rarely a certain portion of the upper layers of the map (improvements, units, cities) will stick to the screen. All three of these issues I have experienced on two seperate graphics cards, one onboard intel, one Nvidia GT 425M on both directX 9 and 11. Game Concepts: I like about 80% of the changes but the remaining 20% is kind of critical. Especially the lack of religion and vassalage. - I love the hex and 1upt. It makes war so much more interesting. Though I personally would have prefered 2upt in open terrain and cities, perhaps allowing only one unit to cross a river per turn even if both sides are open. The AI as many of you have noticed is completely devoid of strategic planning and even I as a peaceful kind of player can dominate pretty much anybody (though I haven't come up against the Japanese yet) on prince. I could probably do the same on Deity if I could keep up technologically. - I also love the city states. I wish there were a couple other kinds though. Like a scientific and trade. I can't wrap my head around why Venice for example would help me with food instead of gold or happiness. It also seems odd to me that when playing as Rome often times the closest city states will be Seoul and Kuala Lumpur. - What happened to religions? That was one of my favorite aspects of cIV. They added a great new depth to diplomacy and I think they would also add even more depth when combined with the city states. I hope they restore religions with the next expansion along with capitulation and vassalage. - I'm not sure I like the new cultural policy aspect. It's kind of an RPG type mechanic, as if the game needed to be more addictive. The naming is horendous. Liberty and Freedom aren't the same thing? Really, Sid? Really? Why not call liberty something like expansion? That is after all what it is. To be fair the old civics system wasn't ideal either. I had a few gripes even after Rhye's changes. I think they are fairly balanced though. One little bug I've discovered is that after the patch, if you activate the allow save cultural policies button, then save up some policies then build the oracle it forces you to spend all your policies. Also if you try to rush to free speech it doesn't seem to have any bonus. Though to be fair free speech in the early Renaissance isn't really logical. I think individual cultural policies should be unlocked also through scientific progress. - I don't think the leaders are very balanced. Honestly I think this is okay and the game should go more for historical accuracy than balance with leaders. What I miss most is having a choice of leaders for each civ. I hope this too will be added in the expansions. Interface: I do like the new simplified gameplay interface. The only problem I have with it, is that it seems to have ADHD and keeps jumping from one side of the map to the other. If two units are free to move next, the game should chose to select the one closest to the current view first. Another qualm I have is with the start playing and set up game button. While I eventually got used to it, I ended up hitting start playing too many times without setting up the game. Who plays the same game all the time anyway? I think the diffrentiation is useless. Also perhaps all the map types could be in the simple set up and an option to regenerate a map on your first turn is also sorely missed. I am no landlubber it's too many clicks, especially if you are setting advanced options (and selecting opposing civs) to get a good start. Also I have a dream of building Rome next to a coast, river, mountain, wine (incense wont get me drunk and non essentially a desert. Damn near impossible when you consider all the clicks and the load times. --- Anyway, this is the end of my rant. I'm sure I have forgotten something but I have run out of steam. And all this talking about the game has me now wanting to play it.