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Civilization IV


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I just downloaded a demo of this (you get 99 turns) and really enjoyed it. I want to buy it, but thought I'd harvest some opinions from on here before I do, because I don't think 99 turns is enough to get a real feel for the game. I didn't get into a war or anything - just R&D'd until I could build a library and a theatre. I looked for a thread and couldn't find anything, which is strange because I've heard this game get a lot of love.

So is it worth it? Is Civ III better? I'm not sure about the graphics at all - so much so that they put me off a bit. They're very clumsy. Is anything better just around the corner?

The last game of this type which I played was Populous II. So I've got a lot of learning to do. Will you teach me?

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I just downloaded a demo of this (you get 99 turns) and really enjoyed it. I want to buy it, but thought I'd harvest some opinions from on here before I do, because I don't think 99 turns is enough to get a real feel for the game. I didn't get into a war or anything - just R&D'd until I could build a library and a theatre. I looked for a thread and couldn't find anything, which is strange because I've heard this game get a lot of love.

So is it worth it? Is Civ III better? I'm not sure about the graphics at all - so much so that they put me off a bit. They're very clumsy. Is anything better just around the corner?

The last game of this type which I played was Populous II. So I've got a lot of learning to do. Will you teach me?

Civ4 is by far the best in the series, with Civ3 probably being the worst. You can pick up all four games for £20 in the Civ Chronicles box-set, aside from the Civ4 expansions, so you could always get the lot and decide for yourself what's best. ;)

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It was recently on amazon for about £12-£15, with Civ 1-4 in the collection. Worth it certainly.

Civ 1 + 2 also still play a cracking game.

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It was recently on amazon for about £12-£15, with Civ 1-4 in the collection. Worth it certainly.

Civ 1 + 2 also still play a cracking game.

It's really quite amazing how good Civ1 is these days. There was so much there from the beginning, and graphics have never played a massive part in the game's appeal.

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I was incredibly addicted to this last year, proper all-nighters for a couple of weeks. Since then I've barely touched it and have never been able to bring myself to play through a game again. I think I just had one marathon game of Civ in me.

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I just downloaded a demo of this (you get 99 turns) and really enjoyed it. I want to buy it, but thought I'd harvest some opinions from on here before I do, because I don't think 99 turns is enough to get a real feel for the game. I didn't get into a war or anything - just R&D'd until I could build a library and a theatre. I looked for a thread and couldn't find anything, which is strange because I've heard this game get a lot of love.

So is it worth it? Is Civ III better? I'm not sure about the graphics at all - so much so that they put me off a bit. They're very clumsy. Is anything better just around the corner?

The last game of this type which I played was Populous II. So I've got a lot of learning to do. Will you teach me?

I think it's the first proper sequel to the original civilisation. By that I mean it is the first one to add significant new elements that actually work while eliminating bad bits from the old games without destroying the essence of civ.

Civ2 might have been better than 1 but it was just an evolution the game itself was not moved on a whole amount. Three tried to innovate but they left in the old problems and the new additions were unbalanced and favored a single strategy. (That strategy being to spam out as many cities as possible)

With 4 the major additions are:

Religion

Civics

Health

The overhauls are on

Cultural influence

Resources

Trading

The fixes are on

civil disorder/happiness

So for a quick summary the religions offer some pretty sweet advantages such as extra happiness +25% building massive pluses for culture as well.

On the other hand of course all the time you spend on these sort of techs you aren't building guns.

It's easier to defend than before. But. Due to the way you can use bombarding units it never becomes impossible to take a city. Cultural influence means you need to leave a sizable garrison if you want to keep it and cultural influence also means that if you take a city in the middle of the enemies heartland then it will have no access to food etc so will starve thus being not a whole lot of use. So you need to move forward methodically if you want to succeed at warfare. Especially as your movement through enemy terrain is hugely slower than normal.

Now your city does not go into cicil disorder ever so no more going through each city every turn to make sure none will flip. If there are unhappy people then _those people_ simply don't work and the city remains as productive as before.

eg if you have a city that is about to grow but only has enough happiness producing buildings for the current population then when the growth occurs rather than flip into civil disorder and produce nothing the new person consumes two food as usual but is unhappy so does not work. Everyone else continues as before. To realise the production benefits of another worker you need to up the happiness of that city by gaining access to a new luxury through trade garrisoning more units (civic dependent) build more religious buildings etc and then you will gain the extra production from that person.

There are various governments that are good for different things. Police state is good for war as it halves unhappiness due to conflict. Democracy is awful as after about ten turns your people are so pissed off production plummets as war weariness kicks in.

The victories are

Cultural

Space race

time

domination

conquest

It's a super awesome game that really requires you to play a few games to get to grips with it.

For this reason I would always suggest do some quick games to get the hang of things on small/medium maps as you don't have the motivation to try out new strategies if it's going to take you years to find out whether they worked or not.

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4 > 2 > 1 > 3

Shirley?

Unless I am misremembering 2 still had the daft zone of control movement and home cities for units.

I think the addition of religion and the elimination of civil unrest clinch it for 4.

Lets hear your reasons why 2 rocks so hard then.

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If you get it, it's really, really not a good idea to start a long game after 11pm.

You will not sleep.

I was really addicted to it for about a month last year, despite being totally crap at it.

It's a really fun game ;)

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I haven't played it myself but apparently the latest expansion pack adds some really good elements too.

I've played them all and, while I really enjoyed 2 & 3, felt that 4 is the pinnacle of the series. Really wish I had mnore time to play on it! Well worth a buy if you even only slightly interested in these types of games.

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I'd never played any of the previous Civs before, purchased this on release and love it. I knew about Civ but just never gave it a chance. Civ4 is easy to get into for a beginner and the mechanics are easy to understand with the help of the Internet.

It is the kind of game I go back to when I have nothing else to play and get addicted all over again. Currently in that addiction phase at the minute.

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I've just gopt this myself, but am yet to install.

Given that I've not really played any of the series before (I played Alpha Centuri for a weekend and that was it), will I need to RTFM before I start or is it fairly easy to get the hang of?

I picked it up in about 15 turns, but I expect I missed out on a lot of stuff. I had loads of fun with my knowledgebase though. But there's certainly no need to trawl through manuals to have a quick game.

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Having been seriously addicted to Civ 1, 2 and 4, they are all cracking games.

However, there is something about 4 that made me feel it wasn't quite right. I've played it and 2 again in the last few months, and can now put my finger on it:

Warmongering is rather frustrating and not a fun as it should be.

This is for a lot of reasons:

- When you capture a city, it is in civil disorder for a number of turns before it becomes yours. Larger the city, longer the disorder. It can be around 10 turns or so - actually a very long time and removes any rush upon capturing.

- They've really reduced the distance units can travel. Roads used to triple distance (so things like knights with a movement of 2 could move 6 spaces a turn to really cover some ground) but this is reduced. Worse, roads don't work in enemy territory. So it takes much much longer to get your army to the enemy.

- Cities now get a cultural defensive bonus. Only way to reduce this is to bombard with siege weapons (catapult, artillery etc). You get to the stage where every enemy city has a 50-100% bonus and even with tech superiority (which isn't easy to get anymore) you won't be able to defeat their defenders. So, you have to bring siege weapons to actually get anywhere. This is boring - firstly their movement is shit so it take ages to get them there (rubbing in the above) and then a number of turns to reduce their defences to a manageable level. It really impacts the flow.

- Gaining a city has much less impact - in 2 you could take any tech advance when you captured a city, can't do that any more.

It's a real shame. 4 is so much better in so many ways, but the above just makes war mongering (face it, always the best part of the other games) much less fun.

I'm playing a scenario now with different tech, one of which gives 4+ road movement and it's amazing how much more enjoyable this has made the game.

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Having been seriously addicted to Civ 1, 2 and 4, they are all cracking games.

However, there is something about 4 that made me feel it wasn't quite right. I've played it and 2 again in the last few months, and can now put my finger on it:

Warmongering is rather frustrating and not a fun as it should be.

This is for a lot of reasons:

- When you capture a city, it is in civil disorder for a number of turns before it becomes yours. Larger the city, longer the disorder. It can be around 10 turns or so - actually a very long time and removes any rush upon capturing.

- They've really reduced the distance units can travel. Roads used to triple distance (so things like knights with a movement of 2 could move 6 spaces a turn to really cover some ground) but this is reduced. Worse, roads don't work in enemy territory. So it takes much much longer to get your army to the enemy.

- Cities now get a cultural defensive bonus. Only way to reduce this is to bombard with siege weapons (catapult, artillery etc). You get to the stage where every enemy city has a 50-100% bonus and even with tech superiority (which isn't easy to get anymore) you won't be able to defeat their defenders. So, you have to bring siege weapons to actually get anywhere. This is boring - firstly their movement is shit so it take ages to get them there (rubbing in the above) and then a number of turns to reduce their defences to a manageable level. It really impacts the flow.

- Gaining a city has much less impact - in 2 you could take any tech advance when you captured a city, can't do that any more.

It's a real shame. 4 is so much better in so many ways, but the above just makes war mongering (face it, always the best part of the other games) much less fun.

I'm playing a scenario now with different tech, one of which gives 4+ road movement and it's amazing how much more enjoyable this has made the game.

I actually prefer to play the game with as little fighting as I can manage. Possibly because I am a long-haired tree-hugging hippy and war is bad. So anything that makes it more difficult for the AI to walk over my underdeveloped armies is a welcome change in my opinion. Cultural victories are my favourite way of winning.

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I still play Civ IV loads, after picking it up at release, despite STILL being crap at it. I win on the default difficulty about half the time (Noble). It's definitely worth playing, if you get into it, it'll keep you happy for many, many hours.

My only gripe is that I find it hard to change the direction of the game when reaching the 'endgame' where territory has been pretty much settled, and other players are plenty far enough up the tech tree, so there's no easy pickings from a military perspective. I think the latest expansion may address that, so I'm looking forward to giving it a go.

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I still play Civ IV loads, after picking it up at release, despite STILL being crap at it. I win on the default difficulty about half the time (Noble). It's definitely worth playing, if you get into it, it'll keep you happy for many, many hours.

My only gripe is that I find it hard to change the direction of the game when reaching the 'endgame' where territory has been pretty much settled, and other players are plenty far enough up the tech tree, so there's no easy pickings from a military perspective. I think the latest expansion may address that, so I'm looking forward to giving it a go.

That's why you need to play on Terra. There's a whole new world out there. That said, you need to have a fucking good Navy to win, or brilliant luck and get to the new world first with an explorer in a Caravel, and get a settler from a village.

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A big shout out for the new expansion pack, Beyond The Sword. It adds a massive amount to the game and also fixes a few glaring holes in the original concept. It also includes almost all of the content included in the previous expansion pack, Warlords, making that pack effectively redundant. Vanilla Civ 4 now seems a bit stripped down compared to its Beyond The Sword incarnation.

I love Civ 4, as in fact I've loved all the Civilization games (including the Call To Power spin-offs, but possibly excluding Civ 3 which as others have pointed out was the weakest in the series by far). I'd go as far as to say Civ 4 may be my favourite game ever. I just never seem to tire of it.

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Is it worth my while investing in the new expansion pack before starting to play, then? Or should I start with the vanilla game, then upgrade?

I'm assuming there's not going to be a problem with me buying the expansion off Steam even though I have a shop-bought version of the game?

I would definitely recommend getting Beyond The Sword and playing that version instead of vanilla, but they're both worthwhile if you're a bit strapped for cash. Essentially they're the same game but Beyond The Sword slots bits into the original seamlessly - oh, and the AI is much better with the expansion too so you'll feel like you're playing smarter opponents rather than the usual slightly gormless computer opposition.

You can use the Steam copy of the expansion with either a Steam original or a box-bought original, no problems there.

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