Civilization V (Civilization 5) PC Review - www.impulsegamer.com -

Gameplay 8.5
Graphics 8.5
Sound 8.5
Value 8.5
Distributor: 2K Games
Classification:
PG
Review Date:
September 2010
Reviewer:
Joshua Wright

8.5


Sid Meier's
Civilization V

The problem with writing the Civilization 5 review is that is takes time away from playing Civilization 5... The game is almost 20 years old now, with over 9 million copies of its various inceptions sold worldwide. Now (as the press-release says) we have the fifth offering of the multi-award winning strategy featuring that famous ďjust one more turnĒ game play which has made it one of the most popular titles of all time.

If youíve been living under a rock, Civilization (Civ) is this: choose a people, say the English, the Germans, the Aztecs, the Chinese etc, start them from their hut-dwelling dark ages, and build them up into a mega-empire. You do this via warfare, culture, trade, diplomacy and science. Fight against rival empires and be the first to either dominate the globe, build the perfect utopia or fly off into the stars. Itís way more involved that just that of course, but hence the beauty of the game.

Now the good points Ė The graphics are greatly improved in Civ 5. The world is lush and more believable than ever, and the presentation and menu system is quick and intuitive. Advisors are helpful without being annoying, and the gameplay is smooth and colourful.

Warfare in Civ 5 is now more fun than ever. The new hex-grid system gives a real tabletop feel, and the end of stacking units makes things way clearer and battles easier to manage. The combat itself makes much more sense, and now gone are the old Civ days when for example, a bunch of knights beat a tank platoon! Out of all things itís the combat which Civ 5 has got the most right.

There are lots of little tweaks that only we Civ veterans can pick up that have made the game run better and the interface easier to manage, but to the uninitiated, all you need to know is that Civ 5 will prove to be a very satisfying experience.

But of course there are things I didnít like Ė Firaxis has gotten lazy with its cut scenes. Yes, the intro is nice, but thatís all theyíve got! Firaxis must have blown their whole budget on one 3 minute movie. No world-wonder cut scenes, no victory cut scenes, nothing! Shame, Firaxis shame!

The new Ďsocial policiesí option is of dubious merit. This interface feels more like a role-playing character tweak list than a genuine advance through time. The player selects bonuses like a McDonalds menu, and itís possible to create for example, a despotism with free-speech! I think here Civ 4 was better, and made more sense with its growth from one social state to another. Also taking out religion (while politically correct) makes it less fun too.

My final gripe is that in effort to minimize the interface, the chance to learn stuff has been removed. In old Civs when you developed something new, there was always a little paragraph that told you why this advance had been important to history. Now you have to go hunting for it in the Civilopedia. Especially in the social policies menu, I didnít even realise what I was choosing. Here the game feels a lot more like Civ: Revolutions Deluxe than Civ 5.

Ultimately itís a very enjoyable game. If youíve never played Civ before, go for it. If you loved Civ 4, there will be things in Civ that will impress, but a few dumbed-down changes that may annoy. But hey, thatís why God invented Updates.

 






 
 



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