I don't remember the Civ IV patch, particularly. I mean, I do, but I don't remember it affecting me particularly, so it may have been huge but it didn't mean re-learning the game (unless I'm getting really old, which is always possible). Having read the summary of the anticipated V patch, sounds to me like the game is about to change radically. Which is probably a good thing, given the way things are right now With 1upt vs SoD, I'm sort of in the middle. As a peaceful builder, I never built stacks of doom, nor did I face them very often (although if I did the game was, ahem, often over ). I quite like 1upt for fighting. In a way. But it seems very artificial, and it also seems very stupid that you can't protect a badly-injured unit at all. It is a pain in the neck the way "goto" commands go wildly wrong if a unit gets blocked. It is a pain not being able to stack workers. It's unrealistic to prevent more than one unit from garrisoning a city. I'd be interested to see a limited units per tile system - 1 doesn't seem to work awfully well but I'm not a warmonger so what would I know? Social policies are ok I suppose but I think one tech tree is enough in the game - I find myself paying more attention to SPs than to tech, which is probably a reflection of the way research just ZIPS by, despite the fact that I am currently not allowing myself any tedious research agreements. I much prefer the way civics work, with benefits and downsides to the choices. Civ IV religion I like very much. It is fun. I like its randomness, I like the diplomatic effects, I like the opportunities and disadvantages that come in its wake. I really don't understand the objections to it - I have read them and they seem largely to be of the "too simplistic/not realistic" variety or suggesting that they make the game too easy. Not in my experience - religion is the one thing that makes my peaceful games dangerous, because I can't control the way it works or the alliances that spring up and dissolve. I can only assume that there are much better players out there who have got converting the whole world to Buddhism down to a fine art I agree with you about espionage, but to be honest I generally ignore it. It is occasionally irritating, since the AI is rather good at destroying space ship parts with spies, but on the whole building courthouses and the odd espionage facility is sufficient. Spies are cheap enough and seem quite effective stationed in bases as counter-espionage agents if I find that I am becoming a target of espionage missions. I would be quite happy if espionage disappeared from IV, but I don't feel strongly about it, and I know some people are able to deploy it quite rewardingly so more power to them is what I say The Civ IV patch may well have been massive, but I'm not sure why this is a big deal. IV was more playable before that patch than V is now after its patches, to be honest, so your assertion that V patches have appeared more quickly seems irrelevant really. I am still playing V in the hope that it will eventually be a good game, but really it was not fit to be released and I think Firaxis/2K were taking the piss when they launched it in its present condition. Just my opinion, and I know there are people here who disagree.