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Take-Two to Publish Next Civilization Game 363

Posted by Zonk
from the boy-they've-been-busy-this-week,-huh? dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Take Two Interactive announced today that they have acquired the rights to the Civilization franchise. They also announced Civ 4, saying that "Civilization IV will also set a new standard for user-modification, allowing gamers to create their own add-ons using the standard Python and XML scripting languages." Okay, so XML's not a scripting language. But it's nice to see open source tech in a major PC game!" Civ IV will be released under the new 2K Publishing Label we reported on yesterday.
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Take-Two to Publish Next Civilization Game

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  • by TommydCat (791543) on Wednesday January 26, 2005 @04:07PM (#11484085) Homepage
    Perhaps they opened it up in hopes that we will improve it for them?
  • Waiting for Civ 4 (Score:5, Interesting)

    by iMaple (769378) on Wednesday January 26, 2005 @04:08PM (#11484108)
    Civilization is my favorite strategy game and I still like to play Civ 3 fo rlong periods of time. My wishlist for Civ 4:
    1)Good multiplayer
    2)More diplomacy and humor

    Ican't just think of any other way they could improve an already fantastic game. (apart from of course putting in super fancy graphice so that I will have to skip food for a month and get a new graphics card)
  • Game moves? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Jpunkroman (851438) on Wednesday January 26, 2005 @04:08PM (#11484113)
    Is it just me or have there been a way above normal level of announcements and agreements and settlements and movements amongst the gaming companies? Makes you wonder what is going on in the boardrooms of these companies, must be pretty buzy.
  • Re:Waiting for Civ 4 (Score:3, Interesting)

    by eln (21727) on Wednesday January 26, 2005 @04:12PM (#11484147) Homepage
    Those are like the exact opposite of what I liked about Civ. Personally, I really got into the military conquest part of the game, with the various military units and global expansion by force. I also really got into the technologies you could learn.

    Leaving aside what that says about my psychological state, I was a little disappointed that the newer games moved so much more into diplomacy and "power politics," and made it almost completely impossible to win with tech and military strategy alone. Are there any civ-like games out there that put more emphasis on that part of the game?
  • Freeciv (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 26, 2005 @04:13PM (#11484159)
    Freeciv [] already has all this, and a lot more. And the upcoming release 2.0.0 will blow your minds!
  • Civ 3 issues (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Raul654 (453029) on Wednesday January 26, 2005 @04:13PM (#11484160) Homepage
    I was a big fan of Civ II and I absolutely loved Alpha Centauri, but I did not like Civ III. Why? The waste and corruption was just far too high. (The patches moderated this slightly, but still not to my satisfaction). It ruined the game, IMHO. I hope Civ IV will improve upon this.
  • by delta_avi_delta (813412) <(moc.liamg) (ta) (yhprum.evad)> on Wednesday January 26, 2005 @04:18PM (#11484212)
    Actually, the industry is very interested in "utilising" the recent professional-level modding community. I wouldn't be surprised if they release the game in a rough-and-ready format, and let the community polish it up, or take it in directions the team could never have envisaged. Civ has a large following, espeically amongst the type of people likely to use the coding facility, it makes sense.
  • by cryptochrome (303529) on Wednesday January 26, 2005 @04:23PM (#11484265) Journal
    Automatic deployment of units would be a nice start. Micromanaging is fine in the early game but it really drags towards the end.

    Making it run in real time would be interesting as well, so long as you control the pace of time. Balancing law enforcement (with the scientists and workers and tax collectors, etc) would be a nice touch that would help with controlling corruption.
  • by getusout (827221) on Wednesday January 26, 2005 @04:28PM (#11484327)
    Okay, so XML's not a scripting language

    You sure about that? :) It's been done before. See the stax project: []
  • Re:Waiting for Civ 4 (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 26, 2005 @04:28PM (#11484328)
    I agree. Civ 3 was always kind of a bore to me. I was kind of hoping it would be like Civ2, with more avenues to dominate and be dominated, but instead it focused much more on diplomacy and things like keeping other nations out of your territory became tedious. The overall focus was much less military oriented (though I guess it is more representative of the real world).

    I really loved the increased diplomacy and culture though. I always hated how in Civ2 you would take out all a civ's major cities leaving a few size 4's and then they sucker you into a peace treaty, or even worse, you can't find those last tiny settlements somewhere out there and have to send an armada of carriers all over the place to scour the map for that last city. Pure tediousness.

    I really wish they made a civ 2.5- just the basic Civ2 game, with the expanded Diplomacy and culture systems built in.
  • Re:Civ 3 issues (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 26, 2005 @04:30PM (#11484350)
    The biggest problem I have with Civ3 are the damned strategic resources. Nothing pisses you off more than taking the time to research a technology to give you a military edge (like 1st gen. tanks), and then seeing you have no oil. Or needing aluminum to build spaceship components.

    It didn't make a single bit of difference if you were the single largest landmass nation in the game. You *always* got shafted out of some strategic late-game resource. All the other civilizations were drawing on multiple resources and refused to trade... at all... even your "best buddy" ally.

    And I never kept track, but it always seemed that the "We have exhausted this resource" events happened far more often than "We have discovered a new source".

    It wouldn't be so bad if they gave the option to turn the damn resources off.
  • Re:Freeciv (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 26, 2005 @04:34PM (#11484390)
    Freeciv has a lot to offer, sure. It's free software. It's immensely customisable. It's multiplayer. It's literally packed with features. I've had a lot of fun with it.

    Unfortunately they forgot to include modern graphics and addictive single-player gameplay, so it's not going to catch on outside the geek niche that values customisability over eye-candy.
  • Mac Version (Score:3, Interesting)

    by NardofDoom (821951) on Wednesday January 26, 2005 @04:35PM (#11484399)
    Civ III is one of my favorite games, but they've pretty much stopped producing Mac versions of it. The last patch to Civ III was put out 8/13/2002. 2002!

    So while the PC version will be out late 2005, the Mac version will be out two years later, running on hacked-together code that requires a 5Ghz G5 and 512MB of VRAM just to run. Slowly.

  • Re:Waiting for Civ 4 (Score:3, Interesting)

    by saintp (595331) <> on Wednesday January 26, 2005 @04:40PM (#11484452) Homepage
    Try "Rome: Total War." For the first campaign, they mollycoddle you with power politics, but after that, it's pure military might. And it's very highly replayable.
  • From an Avid Fan.... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Himring (646324) on Wednesday January 26, 2005 @04:52PM (#11484597) Homepage Journal
    Here is my take. Correct anything you wish as I enjoy learning especially about one of my all-time and long lasting games: Civilization.

    Let me say here that I do indeed hope that they don't fix what isn't broke:

    I am an avid Civ fan. I bought the hard-boxed, big mannualed CivI -- that came with all sorts of goodies -- from Radio shack in the early 90s and fell in love. I also went into a coma and nearly caused myself and my cousin to flunk college.

    CivI: This game set the stage. It built upon the basis of railroad tycoon and the way in which is incorporated butter and bullets (which many games get lop-sided) set it apart as a turn-based game. A player could focus on military might or cultural growth or both.

    What it lacked: it lacked a more advanced combat system. The ol' "phalanx takes out battleship" is the prime example.

    CivII: This game was a vast improvement over CivI and was a needed addition. An advanced combat system was now in place, technologies were added filling in gaps and wonders of the world were expanded. A true gem that brought the dynasty into its own. I thoroughly even enjoyed the video clips of the advisors -- actors -- who would discuss with you your decision-makings.

    What it lacked: not much -- that we knew of, but CivIII would show us what would make the Civs even better than ever....

    CivCTP: "Call To Power" was a travesty. I tried diligently to play this game and like it, but they did exactly what SSI did with the 1st Panzer General and that is they fixed what wasn't broken. Suddenly, all pieces had different movement commands, a different system of controlling settlers, etc. Nothing fit. It was an entirely new game and it flunked horribly. I don't ever wanna see it or talk to it again -- I DIVORCE IT!!!

    What it lacked: EVERYTHING!!!

    CivNet: K, of course, the one thing you ALWAYS wanted from Civ was the ability to trash your buddies. CivNet comes out -- woohoo!!! Wtf POS was this? Talk about crashing! It wasn't worth it. And patches? Not many. It was based on CivI too (am I missing something?)

    What it lacked: um, the ability to not crash while in a networked game after 5 minutes of play....

    CivIII: Finally, another improvement -- or was it? CivIII came out and my first impression was "ah!" thank goodness they didn't rework the commands or controls. Good, good, good -- I can use the number pad to move settlers and stuff. Nice. Wait! What's this!!! Cultural boundaries!!!!!! (orgasm). Yes! I first saw it in Black and White. The best two things about B&W were the cultural boundaries and the king room (rest pretty much sucked). Finally, something that added to the mystique of playing a turn-based god-game. As your culture grows, it only makes sense that a natural boundary and influense would exude from it. Excellent. Ah, the wonders are about the same -- technologies. My goodness. They took CivII, they added mo' betta graphics and also cultural boundaries! I love them! (SSI!!! Pay Attention!!! -- yes, yes, I know all about SSI).

    What it lacked: Wait a minute. Some ... thing ... isn't ... right. I, I, wtf are the Chinese planting cities are pure ice! Wtf are the Romans putting cities are pure rock! Wtf? I gotta keep planting cities like a madman? Um, why is Civ dragging down my honking system? CivIII was promising and nearly became my Civ to keep playing, but the way the AI built cities forever and always at a maddenning pace, the way the game chugged after much growth -- it was too much. I grew to not like it. Why should I have to wait 5 minutes between turns while the AI catches up as the math is hammered out?

    Conclusion: today, right now, I play CivToT all the time. It's like an on-going chess game for me. I play it on my old P2 laptop and it runs like a champ. It is excellent. CivToT (Civilization II Test of Time) is my Civ of choice and will remain so until someone
  • by Zphbeeblbrox (816582) <> on Wednesday January 26, 2005 @05:12PM (#11484816) Homepage
    Script my own AI for my units so all the micromanaging I would have done can be scripted by me. Of course depending on how powerful you made the scripting options it may have limited appeal for the non programmer player. But hey It's *my* wish.
  • Re:Civ 3 issues (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Michael Woodhams (112247) on Wednesday January 26, 2005 @06:06PM (#11485454) Journal
    Without [corruption/unhappiness]... only the game before 2000BC matters, after, it's just tedium.

    This is my biggest problem with the 4X game genre - there is a point where you know you are doing well enough that you are going to win, but this point is often well under half of the way through the game (in real world time.)

    I'd like to see an option where you can give up most of your empire to a new computer player (call it a civil war or something) and get a big bonus on your score for doing so. That way you can spend the whole game struggling against superior foes, which is when it is interesting, racking up a huge score if you can split your empire multiple times and still come back.

    Another thing I'd like to see is variable techs - in this game, artilliary isn't so useful, so you'll need to adjust your tactics to account for it. In the next game, tunnelling is so effective you get the option for a normally unavailable tech, "underground cities". Etc. The closer you get to aquiring a tech, the more information you get on how effective it will be.
  • Re:Just to note... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by ucblockhead (63650) on Wednesday January 26, 2005 @06:23PM (#11485648) Homepage Journal
    Don't joke.

    I'm suffering with people who did exactly that. (Well, not C...another language.)
  • Re:Civ 3 issues (Score:2, Interesting)

    by lsmeg (529105) on Wednesday January 26, 2005 @07:10PM (#11486124)
    I'd like to see an option where you can give up most of your empire to a new computer player (call it a civil war or something) and get a big bonus on your score for doing so.

    A different spin off that: what if everytime you switched governments (monarchy to republic, etc), several of your cities would split off from your empire. It would add some realism to the concept of changing governemts and help prevent stupid crap like switching back and forth between government types out of convenience.

    Personally I think this would be a much more interesting (and effective) method of limiting early hyper-expansion than waste and corruption. If you build a vast empire before you even get monarchy, you'll risk losing a lot of that effort when you have to switch, and potentially end up creating a dangerous new enemy civ.

    I don't know, what do you guys think? Sid, are you listening? :)

  • Re:Neat-o (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Greyfox (87712) on Wednesday January 26, 2005 @07:37PM (#11486395) Homepage Journal
    That's an interesting question. How long was it from the development of photography in the 1800's (If memory serves me correctly) to the first documented photograph of a vagina?

    Would the porn discovery be required for the invention of the Internet?

  • Re:Waiting for Civ 4 (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 26, 2005 @08:26PM (#11486805)
    In later eras, corruption shpould not be radiused around your capital. LA is far from DC, but Washington still exerts it's influce over it just as it does New York.

    Railroad move to fast, compared to sea and air.. slow down one or speed up the other.

    NEED a line of supply. Naval battles never happen because you never have to contorl the seas to supply oil, food, ammo to troops in the field on another continent.

    It swould be cool if heavy units like self propelled artillery can only be unloaded in a city with a port, and not just dumped on a beach by a transport. Like the "amphibious" flag, but backwards.

    similar to a naval transport, infantry should hop in a apc. a flag for land units to haul land units. maybe civ 3 has this already.

    satellites need to do more than just update the world map once. they should update it ever turn.

    As you advance in age, the reasource requirment should nto shift. ex: gunpowder should not assuem to not need slatpeter just cause the era shifts.

    better multiplayer stability. hell.. make it a very slow RTS. :)
  • by crhylove (205956) <> on Thursday January 27, 2005 @03:27AM (#11489929) Homepage Journal
    1. Make it more like civ 2.
    2. Make a really sweet opengl engine, and beautiful models and maps. Let the citys be alive in a certain view.
    3. Add lots of technologies and stuff. That kind of stuff is what makes civ so fun.
    4. Make it more like civ 2.
    5. Don't give it so much busy work. Some things should take care of themselves.
    6. Make it more like civ 2.
  • by snorklewacker (836663) on Thursday January 27, 2005 @11:07AM (#11492070)
    > although I haven't played Test of Time, Alpha Centauri, etc

    You must play Alpha Centauri, if only to experience the awesome immersive feel of its very high production values. It plays back interesting and insightful quotes (gee sounds like slashdot) for every single technology and improvement built, as well as voiceovers on all the wonder movies. That and a few of the "interlude" stories really tell an interesting story, with an ending far more interesting than blasting off in a spaceship (which after all is where AC starts).

    It's kind of dated now, but it's still one of the best games of all time.

    "The wicked have told me of things that delight them. But not such things as your law has to tell. -- St. Augustine, _Confessions_. Datalinks"

    "Organic Superlube? Oh yeah, it's great stuff, great stuff. You really have to keep an eye on it though: it'll try and slide away from you the first chance it gets. -- T.M. Morgan Reilly, Morgan Metagenics"

  • by Brian Reynolds (166458) on Friday January 28, 2005 @09:52AM (#11502605) Homepage
    I'm glad somebody liked and and remembers these. They were the most fun thing of the whole project to create. Whereas so many of the games I've worked on have had me "playing historian", Alpha Centauri was a perhaps unique chance to "play philosopher".

    We found a voice talent agency, I think it was in New York, that specialized in international talent, and intensively screened for accents. We tried to find the most genuine accents possible (Santiago was played by a Puerto Rican, Lal by an Indian, we had a real Russian, and the closest to James Earl Jones' voice we could find for Morgan).

    A great memory of the project is the day we brought in a voice actor to play the drill sergeant and he led us in a rousing round of "Deirdre's Got a Network Node" (which is the version you hear in the game).


1 + 1 = 3, for large values of 1.