Sorry. It has been a long couple of days. If it isn’t the schedule then it is a tragedy that cuts into my schedule. But hopefully I will be able to put it beside me for the moment and get a review written. So here we are and here we are looking at one of the most anticipated games to come out in 2014. Anyone who is a fan of turn based strategy (which includes myself if you have seen my top 20 favorite video games) has been waiting in anticipation for the latest edition of one of the greatest franchises in the genre’s history; the Sid Meier Civilization games.
This recent edition Civilization Beyond Earth takes us away from our primitive pre classical era beginnings and takes us once more into the future into a world of wonder and excitement in the sci-fi future. While it doesn’t have a lot of the bells and whistles Civ V, anyone who is a fan of the series will find it a very satisfying play to say the least.
Set in the distant future, Beyond Earth is the story of Firefly. Earth got used up and eight companies from Earth have set out to colonize a new home for the human race. Once they land on one of the many planets, it becomes your standard Civ. Diplomacy, domination, and mastery over science and the planet are key to winning the game.
This game feels like a Civilization game. In the construction of the cities, the development of the land, and the serious threat of the other players along with the harsh environment. Not to mention the open-ended nature of the game allows you to play out scenarios in your mind, to create your own history and become as invested in the game as you wish to be.
Civilization series is one of those games that as long as you stick to the core principles and expand on the base model then there are very few ways that you can go wrong.
Sci Fi Civ is the Best Civ
I love it when Civ goes science fiction. There are just so many possibilities and stories that can come from it. One of the weirdest things about playing a game like Civ V; though it isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but the game seems to go on a sort of alternative timeline. A time when Babylon and the Maya can be members of the United Nations and can vote on a world leader. Kind of feels weird when the world goes on such a different tangent.
But when it comes to a science fiction civ game, you make the future and you gain the feeling that you are watching it transpire before your eyes. Not to mention you get to see the cool science fiction world play out around you and see what could be the future of our world. A very cool concept as looking to the future always seems to be the forefront of the Civilization series.
Only 8 Civs
I’m sorry, but after coming from a game like Civ V that had dozens of unique and playable characters, having 8 Civs just isn’t enough to satisfy me. Sure you can customize them to your liking, but one of the best parts of Civ V was choosing Venice because you liked their diplomatic power or choosing France because of their amazing culture. This system does not improve upon the previous system but instead takes away the identity to them.
For the first time I going to say that customization is not a good thing. I can get behind a lack of playable systems if each of them had their own unique identity. If you have each of the eight civs that would lend themselves to a certain type of victory it would make me want to play with them more. Instead of that, I just choose on what area of Earth I want to play from; pacific islands, Brazil, North America, and so forth.
And before someone says that they will add DLCs to add more Civs later, then that is the wrong mindset to be in. Because if the developers had that in mind then it means that they put out an unfinished game in the hopes of finishing it later. Either case it is a major con of the game.
It Just Doesn’t Have that Addictive Character that Civ V Possessed
One of the best things about the past Civ games is that they were so addictive. You need sleep, you need to run errands, and you just keep saying… One… more… turn… Before you know it is five in the morning and you are still going strong. This has happened to me time and time again when playing Civ V. The game even makes fun of this with its end screen even saying Just one… more… turn… And it is the damn truth!
This game however, I am sad to say never once gave me that feeling. I was never once saying that I need to take one more turn to create this farm, build this building, or take over this other civilization. I could leave the game whenever I want with a proud sense of ‘eh… I do have Crusader Kings 2 or Team Fortress 2 to play.’ It is a good game, yes. But ‘just one more turn’ it most certainly is not.
Overall, Sid Meier’s Civilization Beyond Earth is not the best game in the Civ series. It just doesn’t have that must play again value and it just flat-out not as memorable as some of its predecessors. However this is still a fantastic game. It is fun, the turn based strategy is still there and as long as they put together a Civ game in the same fashion as the others and gave it a unique science fiction flair. If you are a fan of the series or turn based strategies this game is a must own to be sure.
Final Score 3.5/5
Thank you for reading and understanding my schedule. Look for another post from me this Tuesday and Thursday. Until then, have a good night and please like and subscribe for more.