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First Reviews of Civilization V 380

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the get-your-lust-on dept.
An anonymous reader submitted linkage to a story explaining why Hemos has been twitching for a week in anticipation: "Defying the urge to phone-in an unambitious sequel and coast on past successes, Sid Meier's Civilization V is anything but a lazy rehash. It feels almost as if someone described the concept of the renowned 19-year-old turn-based strategy series to a talented designer who'd never played it, and let him come up with his own version. It's similar enough to be familiar to veterans, different enough to be fresh, and its polish and accessibility make it a great place for new players to pick up one hell of a Civ addiction."
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First Reviews of Civilization V

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  • Wine? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by SwedishPenguin (1035756) on Tuesday September 21, 2010 @02:31PM (#33653578)

    What is the wine status? I want to know whether to get it right away or wait for wine to gain proper support for it..

  • Re:Wine? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Robotron23 (832528) on Tuesday September 21, 2010 @02:44PM (#33653782) Homepage

    Raises an interesting point; in Civilization IV do you need to have researched a technology required to gather a luxury resource like wine to be able to receive it in a trade?

    It's plain to see you can't get strategical goods like iron in trade without Iron Working and so on, but as a casual Civ player I'm uncertain about less vital things like luxury resources...

    If you do need the tech, then it's certain you'll need Monarchy for wine; probability won't enter the equation.

  • by Xelios (822510) on Tuesday September 21, 2010 @02:46PM (#33653812)
    What reason is there to release the game 3 days later in Europe?
  • by Rhys (96510) on Tuesday September 21, 2010 @02:53PM (#33653890) Homepage

    But I did do the steam unlock on my laptop and copied over the music directory to play while I'm at work today. The 15 hours and 58 minutes of oggs (and, I think, one wav) I copied over have -- at least so far -- been top notch. Not that I've listened to anything near the 15 hours of them, only about 2-3, but still.

    Nice background music too; mostly instrumental, not too quiet nor too loud.

  • by Monkeedude1212 (1560403) on Tuesday September 21, 2010 @02:55PM (#33653916) Journal

    Religion was horribly overpowered or over-abused in Civ4 - Most of my multiplayer game lobbies were a scramble to see who could get the civilizations with the Mystical starting research, so they could jump right into Buddhism and Hinduism. I mean, once the races were picked, then people would all research polytheism and meditation, then it was a cointoss on who got it first.

    Eventually, as the games would progress on, whoever got the religions first would end up winning. It put you so far ahead of everyone else, there was no real way to catch up. The only way you got to Mega cities of 17 Population or more was mostly to do with keeping people happy, not so much about keeping them fed, and since Religion gave you an early burst in happiness, you had a more productive city than everyone else, so you generated more research, and were able to get a great person sooner (usually a priest! no doubt). Then they get to Monarchy sooner so they can just do that "military keeps people happy" civic and then they've got an a mega city that works because its so well defended. So then whoever gets the first priest ends up using the priest to get another religion. And Bam, before you know it, One person has founded 4 or 5 of the religions, and has an amazing economy because of it, has good culture to spread better than you can, and has the happiness available to use slavery to catch up on the infrastructure. If you attacked him early on you cripple yourself for everyone else to take you out, if you leave him be he wins automagically. You dare not attack him later because he's further in the tech tree than you (at least defensively) - so you ride it out. By late game, He still has 100% dedicated to research and is raking in over 100 gold per turn, and then when he feels like finishing it, he switches to universal suffrage, nationalism, and Theocracy, and pumps out an instant army and steams rolls each civilization 1 by 1.

    I am glad they dropped religion, it ruined Civ4 multiplayer for me.

  • by Mongoose Disciple (722373) on Tuesday September 21, 2010 @02:56PM (#33653948)

    Yep, but you can only really play one of the two at a time.

    I'm in much the same boat as that poster -- Starcraft 2's nice enough for what it is (although it still pales to SC1 in most respects for me) but Civ 5 will probably be getting my gaming time for a while.

  • by mooingyak (720677) on Tuesday September 21, 2010 @03:06PM (#33654062)

    I'm living the best days of my life, currently. No strategy game comes close to the wonder of holding your own baby in your arms.

    When my last child was still an infant, sometimes I would sit with her in my arms... while I played Civ IV. Beat that.

  • Re:My Review... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by click2005 (921437) * on Tuesday September 21, 2010 @03:07PM (#33654072)

    I try not to read reviews as these days they're little more than advertising funded press releases.

    A few questions...

    Is it actually any good? The video I saw of some gameplay made it look like a console game designed
    for the lowest common denominator. I understand them wanting to improve graphics and change it to appeal
    to non-civ fans but I'd be happy with a Civ4 that didnt run constantly out of memory.

    Can you still zoom out to see more than 4 blocks away?

    most important...

    Does Spock still beep...beep...beep?

  • by KermodeBear (738243) on Tuesday September 21, 2010 @03:10PM (#33654118) Homepage

    Can someone comment on the support for red/green color blindness? I often had problems being able to read certain map features and recognizing some units in Civ III and Civ IV because of it.

  • by Kazymyr (190114) on Tuesday September 21, 2010 @03:18PM (#33654222) Journal

    Actually it's the graphic card requirements that break it for me. They're above 99% of laptops, and certainly above mine which does have a separate graphic card with dedicated memory but it's an ATI 3200, way below their specs. Plays many games well, but I won't even try to get anywhere near civ5 knowing what their minimum specs are - or else it'd be wasted money. Also, my laptop is my only computer right now.

  • by thetzar (30126) on Tuesday September 21, 2010 @03:43PM (#33654560) Homepage

    Just finished a couple hours of Civ 5. Honestly, it's disappointing. The new no-stacking concept has solved the stacks-of-death problem, but just created serious roadblocks in the game itself. And I do mean roadblocks - movement is a major hassle. Cities and the effects of what you do with them are more opaque than ever. In an attempt to simplify, they ended up just glossing over the gameplay. Same with diplomacy. They didn't actually make things simpler, they just stopped giving you the numbers involved.

    I can get behind a number of the new mechanics - embarking land units is a great idea, the hexes are swell, the game is very pretty. But if feels more like a cheap rip-off of Civ than an advancement.

    The pull-back strategic view is great in concept, but poor in execution.

    I hope it will grow on me, but for now, Civ5 is one step forward, two steps back from Civ 4 (which itself had serious issues).

  • by natehoy (1608657) on Tuesday September 21, 2010 @03:53PM (#33654710) Journal

    I'll be there as soon as I finish this turn. No, wait, this one. Oh, crap, at this rate I won't make it until Civ VII comes out...

    In all seriousness, I'm very happy with FreeCiv. The graphics aren't terribly awesome, but graphics aren't what I play Civilization for, anyway.

  • by Mongoose Disciple (722373) on Tuesday September 21, 2010 @03:59PM (#33654808)

    In all seriousness, I'm very happy with FreeCiv. The graphics aren't terribly awesome, but graphics aren't what I play Civilization for, anyway.

    FWIW, the games have been getting more mechanically complex over time, too. At least, I remember FreeCiv as being very Civ2-like.

    I much prefer Civ 4, although I did love Civ 2 for what it was in its day.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 21, 2010 @04:01PM (#33654854)

    That's what I do. I have a primary Steam account with credit card info that purchases the games; I set up a throwaway gmail account for every game, create a Steam account for it (primarily 'cause Steam doesn't accept "+" in e-mail addresses), and gift the game to it. The steam accounts are named $myprimaryaccount_$gamename, so I have xxx_hl2, xxx_heroesV, and soon, I'll have xxx_civ5.

    I'm not doing it in order to be able to fine-grainedly resell games from my account, but instead in order to get around the "logged-in in a single computer only" limitation with my kids; if I want to play Half-Life2, my kids can still play Heroes of Might and Magic V on another machine. If both games were in a single account, we couldn't do that. Until Steam invents "family accounts", I'll keep to this strategy.

    BTW, I was disappointed to see Civ5 is Steam-only. I would've preferred to buy a boxed copy that's Steam-independent.

  • Eventually (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Chelloveck (14643) on Tuesday September 21, 2010 @04:04PM (#33654904) Homepage

    I was itching to buy it, but then found out that the Mac version will be ready "eventually", not a simultaneous release. Bugger. Back to Civ IV for me.

  • by AvitarX (172628) <me@@@brandywinehundred...org> on Tuesday September 21, 2010 @04:26PM (#33655216) Journal

    I'd consider FreeCiv to be like 2.5 I think. But I may be remembering civ2 wrong, it has been a long time.

    I can't recall when things like borders got added.

    I do agree that each game does add to it, though lots of people don't like that. I wish i had a computer that can play the new one, but I don't.

  • by antdude (79039) on Tuesday September 21, 2010 @04:35PM (#33655330) Homepage Journal

    Are there any good tunes like Christopher Tin's Baba Yetu: http://www.civfanatics.net/downloads/civ4/music/BabaYetu.mp3 [civfanatics.net] ? I am not even a Civ. fan (don't like turn based strategy games).

  • by natehoy (1608657) on Tuesday September 21, 2010 @04:54PM (#33655576) Journal

    FreeCiv is very much like CivII, though it adds the "borders" feature I first saw in the demo of Alpha Centauri, and there are a bunch of little things. Some slight visual improvements (city walls actually get drawn on the map, etc).

    Of course, FreeCiv is also under active development, so they keep adding new features.

    Still, I just RTFA, and Civ V does look very beautiful, especially compared to the pixelly CivII-ish gameboard of FreeCiv.

    But I don't play for the pretty pictures, and I get precious little time to play at all, so FreeCiv fills my Civ addiction quite nicely and the price is right. If I had a current Windows box, and I had the time to play it, I might buy it.

  • Re:My Review... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by jd (1658) <imipak@noSPam.yahoo.com> on Tuesday September 21, 2010 @05:16PM (#33655798) Homepage Journal

    Better diplomacy would be nice - one of the real strengths of all the Civilization games is the depth and complexity of the interaction with NPCs. I like what you're saying about an improved navy. To improve realism, it would be good if they added a raft-with-sail (likely how early humans reached Australia, now believed to have been 70,000 years ago - well beyond the timeframe of Civilization of any edition). There's a few other such touches I'd like added, but whatever they added there'd always be something else that they could add which could be neat.

    I have Civ I and II, never bothered with III and IV (I was spending waaaay too much time with FreeCiv), but V sounds like it'll be worth buying.

  • by Vintermann (400722) on Tuesday September 21, 2010 @05:20PM (#33655836) Homepage

    I didn't like Civ2 much. It had isometric graphics, but I felt they were uglier. It also had basically the same tech tree, with some things grafted on in unconvincing places.

    Why are they imitating that instead of Civ 1? Not to speak of Master of Magic. Best Civ1-engine game ever.

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