For the first time in over a decade, console gamers can get their hands on a Sid Meier's Civilization game. Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One owners now have access to the full-fat version of 2016’s Civilization VI. The interface has been overhauled, the control scheme reworked for gamepad, and it both looks and runs well, even on base hardware. However, while the game has been competently ported to consoles, Civilization games have always thrived on the PC rather than console; the glacial pace of both solo and multiplayer modes can often feel antithetical to the console experience.
I was never the biggest fan of the core Civilization games on PC, but poured hundreds of hours into Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri, and a hundred more when the streamlined spin-off, Civilization Revolution, release on last-gen consoles in 2008. Unlike the core games that were continuously growing in complexity, Civilization Revolution reigned in several cumbersome mechanics, streamlining research trees, build orders, and unit movement, while introducing a strong multiplayer component that catered to shorter games. Conversely, the Civilization VI port, revels in its complex systems - especially if you own the expansions - and offers an immense amount of customisation when setting up solo or multiplayer matches.
The colonisation of the New World commenced later than expected, when the British Empire finally established the city of Liverpool alongside Hudson Bay in 1944. Welcome to Civilization.
As with its predecessors, Civilization VI is a game about crafting your own alternative history and future for your chosen civilisation. You pick from a myriad of leaders, each representing a civilisation with unique units and tech abilities to give them a leg up in certain ages, then start out with a humble settler, pick a spot to build your first city, and begin your journey, turn by turn, towards victory through military, scientific, cultural, or religious supremacy.
Moving hex by hex, you expand outwards looking to create new cities in areas of abundant resources or strategic strength, expand the infrastructure and unit-producing abilities of your existing cities, pick a government type or religious doctrine, pick your research path through gigantic tech tress, garrison military units to defend your own cities, or use them to encroach on your neighbours. That said, anyone who’s played a Civilization game before will appreciate that’s a gross simplification of all total activities on offer and the turn-by-turn decisions you’ll be making.
...navigating unit and building production lists, selecting upgrades along your research tree, and handling diplomatic encounters is quick and intuitive with a gamepad.
Developing your cities and industries, while consuming natural resources, affects the world’s climate...
It’s best to organise a schedule for multiplayer sessions with mates beforehand or use the local “hotseat” mode if you want to see a match through to completion.
Enjoys games with awesome stories and characters, along with new and interesting hardware. Dislikes day-one patches and driver updates.
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PC, PS4, Xbox One, Switch
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