Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Review: Civilization V Gods & Kings (4/5)

This will be a review of both Civilization V and the recent Gods & Kings expansion in one.I've played Civ V on and off since it came out but since the recent Gods & Kings expansion came out I figured I would just review them both. Most PC gamers know and love the Civilization series and I know I at least have fond memories of Civ II from when I was a kid. Most games in the series were good but none really compared to Civ II in my mind, but I think Civ V comes closest.

To those unfamiliar with the genre it is a turn based strategy game where you build up your empire and technology. Starting with one city and agriculture you can use diplomacy, culture, technology, or war to build your empire up and win the game. You can win with one super developed city and a vote from the UN making you president of the world or something, or you can win with 100 cities by crushing your opponents. It is up to you.

Things I liked:
  • New combat system with one unit per tile actually makes strategy a little more difficult and interesting because you have to take positioning into account.
  • New hex grid is also nice and a little more intuitive to me anyways. Some don't like it but I find it easier to understand.
  • Gods & Kings adds spies which were always fun. They aren't quite as interesting as they were in older Civ games but they still add a little spice to the game.
  • The techs and buildings and civs are as fun as ever. The core gameplay is just fantastic.
  • Gods & Kings added some fun new units and buildings and improved naval raiding of cities which was nice.

Things I didn't like:
  • Gods & Kings also adds religion but I thought it was bland and didn't have a large effect on the game. Perhaps I wasn't using it correctly though.
  • Gods & Kings added a few new nations to the mix too but I didn't find any of them particularly interesting.
  • The end game gets a bit rough, especially if you are doing domination. Controlling so many units and cities can be tedious to me at times, but that kind of comes with the genre.
  • AI is pretty good but sometimes acts strangely and doesn't accept very reasonable trades. This is a minor problem though.

Overall: Civ V is a great game and I think totally worth picking up at any price. The replay value is just through the roof. There was a recent story on reddit of a man who has been playing the same Civilization II game for 10 years and got stuck in an "eternal war." It's a good read and I recommend it even if you don't play Civilization. Anyway, the point is you can play Civilization games for a very long time. I don't think Gods & Kings adds enough content for me to truly recommend it though unless you can get it for a quite a bit cheaper than $30. If you have Civ V and are just craving for more content though it will do the trick.

Final Score: 4/5


Paul Rice said...

I don't think I've ever seen an AI that knew how to do reasonable trades in a RTS. Maybe they don't want trading to be abusable, but still. Seems like there's been no progress since "1 set of clothes for 10 spare axles" in oregon trail.

That is my comment.

Chris Johnson said...

Haha fair enough Paul. You're right I haven't ever seen AI doing reasonable trades in other games either. I just hoped they would have made it further by now. I'd guess they err on the side of trades in favor of the AI so as not to let people abuse it, which is fair enough.

Do Hun Lee said...

If you use the religion correctly you can never lose or should I say, you can gain huge advantage.
As for the not-fair-enough trade. If you have huge influence or if the other nation fears you you can pretty much have your own way. Other than that, they ask for trades that are usually beneficial for them.