The Civilization series from 2K Games is one of if not the biggest turn-based strategy game series on PC. Civilization VI was released in October and it is one of the biggest PC games of 2016. It follows on from the formula of the last game where you must rise through different eras to make sure your empire is number one. But does this game offer enough new things to make it even better than the last Civilization game?
Build Your Empire
One of the best things about Civilization VI is how it has kept so much of what made the other games so much fun. You still need to build cities in order to make your empire grow. You need to develop your armed forces, go to battle, make technological advancements and so on. In all, you have to make sure that your empire is successful and makes it all the way into the future. Right from the get-go, Civilization VI throws a load of options at you. I would go as far to say that this is the most feature heavy Civilization game so far. It may be a bit daunting when you first start playing the game, especially if you are a newbie to the series. But long time players will love being able to dive in headfirst so quickly.
History Has Never Looked So Good
Of course in a strategy game graphics are not everything, but Civilization VI really does look fantastic. This game has a more cartoony kind of art style, but it works very well. The character models look amazing. Cutscenes are very well done and while not an essential part of the game. They do help move things along and keep you even more invested. Civilization VI is just full of little details that bring each world to life. From chickens walking around to the glow of a lighthouse. The game has a very cool day and night cycle which I feel adds, even more personality to the game.
One other thing I have to mention in terms of the games presentation is the different world leaders you will encounter. Without giving anything away these are probably what you would expect in a Civilization game. But they are so well designed and have had so much time and effort put into their character that you will start to think of them as a real leader. A leader you will want to work with and be diplomatic, make trades and so on. Or a leader who you feel, you will have no choice but to destroy! This really does help keep you pumped up as you play and dealing with certain leaders adds a real element of excitement and danger to the game.
Some Big Improvements To Gameplay
Civilization VI does what the games before it did, but it does it much better. The big game changer though is the “unstacking of cities” This basically means that you can spread your city out much further across the map and where you place things can have a positive or a negative effect on the way you progress. This aspect of the game makes working the map more important than it ever has been before. You cannot just plop a district in anyplace you want. For example, you may want to place a new city right on the coast, but you have to think about the future and how the area you have placed this city may change…. For the better or the worse. It means that you have to try and have a bit of foresight to make sure you do not put yourself in a vulnerable position later on in the game.
Like other Civilization games, tiles are where you will be building your cities, placing items and so on. But there is plenty of strategies involved. You see each tile has different factors and these factors depend on what you can do with the tile. For example, if you wanted to build pyramids then you would have to make sure that you are doing so on a desert tile.
It Sounds Far More Complex Than It Is
If you have played a Civilization game before then you will know what you are getting into. But for a player new to the series all this can sound very daunting and off-putting. Yes, Civilization VI does throw a ton of options your way. But the game has a very well designed user interface to make things as straightforward as possible. I would go as far to say that this is the most user-friendly Civilization game ever. The game, in general, has a very good feel to it and even something that sounds complex like trading or espionage, for example, manages to be in depth but also has some more laborious sections be automated.
Every Decision Matters
OK, so not every single decision you make is going to be a life-changing decision. The different districts and various wonders of the world will keep you busy as you have to decide where and what to build and also how to upgrade. But you cannot just give this your full attention as you have to work on diplomacy with other places. You will also have to set up exploration expeditions to find resources, new wonders and in general ways to make your society evolve. Plus there is also combat if you decide that the best way for your society to move forward is by flattening all the rest. Civilization VI really does make you think before you act. This is not because the game tells you a million times “are you sure you want to do this?” but because you get so attached to your “people” that you want to make sure what you are doing will actually work.
One of the new features added to the game which I had a lot of fun with was the Eureka Moments. These are quests that are added to the game and they have just a single objective. Each scientific and cultural research point can have a Eureka Moment. If you take the time to research them then you will be rewarded. These extra moments will give you something more to do while you play the game and while you may think that you won’t bother. Taking part in these can actually help you progress your civilization.
Civilization VI PC Gameplay Video
Civilization VI Final Thoughts
Civilization VI is the best game in the series. It adds many new gameplay elements that have simplified things to the point where you may find it hard to go back to the older games! Also, Civilization VI would serve as a great jumping-in point for a player who has wanted to get into the series but has felt it was too overly complex. Do not get me wrong, Civilization VI offers you a ton of different options so you can micro manage your civilization to the moon! But the fantastic user interface and streamlined process of many actions are what makes it a game that is very easy to get into. I am sure that this is going to be regarded as one of the best PC games of 2016!