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  • Sid Meier's Civilization IV

    Most of you have seen Magnum50 around the forums, either in his capacity as America's Army Game Officer, or as erstwhile reviewer and newshound.

    Besides his duties here, he also does the odd review for SimHQ, but this was the first full review he sent our way. About time!

    Originally, Magnum sent this as part of a 2 game review, pairing his review of Civ4 with a review of Shattered Union. In a naked attempt to pad the Game Review section, I exercised some editorial privilege and broke them into 2 seperate reviews. The second half will run next week.

    So, give the man a warm welcome! Take it away Magnum!


    Most gamers know of Sid Meier. He is considered by many as one of the greatest game makers in computer game history. He's most famous for the Civilization series, which now bears his name (along with every other game he now makes).

    In Civilization IV you still rule your empire through history from the dawn of man until much later in the future. You learn and implement new technologies, you wage war with your neighbors or you can be civil about it and develop diplomacy with them.


    And so the addiction begins!

    Your overall goal is to become the most powerful leader in the virtual world. Civilization IV has gone 3D along with a whole lot of changes and extras added to "up" the game play.

    You now have detailed environments where animals roam wild and become as big a problem as the much hated barbarians, which are also still here but now with their own little villages. If you don’t put them in check quickly, they reproduce and become more of a headache. The interface has received a much needed overhaul and looks and plays beautifully now.


    Live in your world, play in Sid's

    Some of the new features in Civ IV include the introduction of religion, the introduction of great people who can perform certain actions immediately for your civilization. Holy cities are introduced and culture is expanded. You have your typical air, land, and sea units that develop and improve with time and study.


    We're going to need a bigger boat!

    One of the features that never really seemed to work in Civ II or III was multiplayer. Well Sid got it right with Civilization IV.

    You can have a multiplayer that remains turn-based, one at a time, or you can set-it-up where you both take your turns at the same time and then it plays out. Or the newest feature PBEM: Play By Email. It takes forever to PBEM, but it’s always nice to play your turn when you want.

    What’s great about multiplayer is that you can join whenever and take over the AI. You can then leave and let the AI take charge until you return or until the end. Multiplayer is very well through in Civ IV.

    Civilization IV also comes with tools that any modder should need to make modifications, new missions, or even new units. Civ IV has been done in XML code, so it has become very modder friendly. Civilization IV even comes with a number of map mods, and about 4 scenario mods that are incredible — like the New America mod, and the Desert mod which is based on WW2 warfare in the deserts of Africa (Afrika Korp).


    The caption reads:I think your head would look good on the end of a pole.

    Civ IV in my opinion is the best in the series, and probably the best turn-based strategy game I have ever played. Civilization IV is still the King and with all its great add-ons, mods, and improvements it is a kick butt turn-based game. You’ll be able to find plenty of online action with Civ IV, and of course there will be user made mods, units, and missions.

    If you liked Civ II or any of the Civilization games for that matter, you’ll love Civ IV and I highly recommend you go out and buy yourself a copy. Alternately you can buy it as a download from Fileplanet’s Direct2Drive online store.

    I am addicted to it all over again. It's tough to stop playing.

    “Just one more turn, maybe two… OK, OK just going to go until the fighting starts then I'll save and exit for later… OK, just a few battles, then I’ll save my spot…”

  • #2
    Re: Sid Meier's Civilization IV

    Great job!! The game sounds realy good. I think I've played previous versions, but dont realy remember...
    birdie_in_Texas:ok..i feel stupid here..what is "NS"..? Wyzcrak:Natural Selection. Don't feel at a loss for not knowing the acronym. Feel at a loss for not having experienced the game.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Sid Meier's Civilization IV

      I have this game and it is really fun. The graphics are greatly improved over previous versions and it looks great. I've found that it is much more difficult to master than the previous versions (although Civ III was tough too).

      I look forward to playing Civ IV multiplayer on our servers.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Sid Meier's Civilization IV

        Nice review. Still missing one critical piece to me, how does it compare to Rome:Total War??? ;) (Though I've already decided I need both CivIV and the R:TW expansion for christmas, so maybe it's not that important).

        One comparison thread I found:
        http://www.octopusoverlords.com/phpB...8f4b7c755d0f73

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Sid Meier's Civilization IV

          Originally posted by Addict
          Nice review. Still missing one critical piece to me, how does it compare to Rome:Total War??? ;) (Though I've already decided I need both CivIV and the R:TW expansion for christmas, so maybe it's not that important).

          One comparison thread I found:
          http://www.octopusoverlords.com/phpB...8f4b7c755d0f73
          On CivIV, you don't have the ability to control the battle as you do in RTW. RTW, you place the troops, you break the walls, you set up the attack. In CivIV, you determine your resources and decide which plots of land you are going to use, which need mining, where to trade resources and which resources to trade. In CivIV, the time frame extends significantly into the future with technology from Warriors to Minutemen type, to Marines and beyond. With CivIV, spreading your culture, discovering religion and passing that on, and utilizing resources is much more important than in RTW.

          Good review!

          Lucky Shot

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          • #6
            Re: Sid Meier's Civilization IV

            Imagine, Lucky and Addict, how cool it would be to have a game that was essentially Civ IV with the Rome, Total War battle interface wrapped up into one package! It would probably take several years in real time to play a single game, but man would it be worth it!

            BTW, Anyone here ever played Alpha Centauri or Colonialization? I wish Sid would come out with a new version of both.

            Comment


            • #7
              Civ Iv Still Highly Unstable

              I would STRONGLY recommend anyone considering purchasing this game, take a good, hard look at your system, and google for "civ 4 1.52 crashes". 1.52 is the most recently released patch. It was released after a LONG period where many people who purchased the game couldn't even INSTALL it. The company, 2k Games, is a brand new company, and neglected to respond to people's cries for help regarding this software. Instead, they afforded people the usual cop-out, 'system specs'. My system is perfectly within specs, but is not top notch. However, I have seen many complaints from people's whos system is WAY above specs (capable of running F.E.A.R. or similar) and still have the same problems that I do.

              The symtoms include stuttering sound, bad video playback, excessive memory leak issues, and finally (and most commonly) BSOD or total reboot of system. When this happens to my system, the video card simply stops receiving information. In other words, screen goes black, the green light goes to standby, and the system stops responding completely. If I press the reset or power switch, nothing happens. The only way for me to get my system to work again is by UNPLUGGING IT.

              Once again, I want to emphasize I am not a minority, here. Almost everyone I've talked to about this game has this issue once the game progresses beyond about 1750AD (on a normal game). You will, perhaps, not see any negative reviews on E-magazines, because they either were paid off or because they simply did not play through a full game before they reviewed. Also, their systems are, im sure, gratuitously proportioned.

              That being said, it KILLS me that this game has so many issues, because it is SO DAMN GOOD. Even WITH the reboots, causing my system MAJOR stress, I still play the game! I mean, I have to reboot my damn computer every 20 minutes, but I still play!

              Sid, good work. Firaxis, or whoever is responsible for rushing the development, bad work. You've given the community the impression that you are using us as beta testers. Not cool.

              Here is a link to a thread from Civ IV's OFFICIAL Forum with (count 'em) SIXTEEN pages users with the same rebooting/crashing issues that I have. http://forums.civfanatics.com/showthread.php?t=149899


              "Who put the fun in dysfunctional? I." - Aesop Rock

              "Cuz you can choose to say 'Good morning, God! =)' or 'Good God, morning! =(" - Blackalicious

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Civ Iv Still Highly Unstable

                Originally posted by aesop rock
                Once again, I want to emphasize I am not a minority, here. Almost everyone I've talked to about this game has this issue once the game progresses beyond about 1750AD (on a normal game). You will, perhaps, not see any negative reviews on E-magazines, because they either were paid off or because they simply did not play through a full game before they reviewed.
                While I'll admit that the game had some multiplayer bugs, you're exaggerating a bit here. You might want to think otherwise, but I'm betting that you ARE in the minority. I've played with quite a few people here at TG that haven't had the problems that you're having.
                Become a supporting member!
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                • #9
                  Re: Sid Meier's Civilization IV

                  I have had some minor animation stutters and memory problems (plus the initial install headaches), but nothing that makes the game unplayable. Overall, it seems like they just skipped some Q&A steps, didn't polish or optimize the code or whatever. Disappointing. I don't doubt that there are a lot of complaints.

                  Kind of strange that such an established developer like Meier would end up with a rookie programming team.
                  In game handle: Steel Scion
                  sigpic

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                  • #10
                    Re: Sid Meier's Civilization IV

                    How is multiplayer?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Sid Meier's Civilization IV

                      I LOVE multiplayer, both over the net and hot seat.... Let's get a game together soon!
                      I heart TG.
                      xoxo

                      ~Sugar~

                      "Tactics at TG come from trust and friendship, not meticulous detail and rigid discipline." ~I saw this in Zephy'rs sig and I love it.

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                      • #12
                        Re: Sid Meier's Civilization IV

                        Bleh. I usually pay no mind to these games, but your review makes me think otherwise

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Sid Meier's Civilization IV

                          Originally posted by Fuzzy View Post
                          ..BTW, Anyone here ever played Alpha Centauri or Colonialization? I wish Sid would come out with a new version of both.
                          i'm still playing Alpha Centauri and sorry for the late reply!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Sid Meier's Civilization IV

                            To this date, I still play Civ4 (with expansion Beyond the Sword) almost every day with people I know (along with a mix of other games out there). All the old posts from 2005/2006 about memory and stuttering are virtually gone now, except when you have huge amounts of computer players on large maps (expected from a game then). This game can truly test your computer's capabilities, to which I am building a new computer for Civ5 (releasing later this year).

                            Civ4 probably provides some of the best balance between complexity and civilization building, with depth to economics and military strategy. It's still fun after all these years giving it more replay value than Diablo 2, Starcraft, Warcraft 3, DOTA, Counterstrike Source, and many more games that are exceptional when it comes to value. Its also amazing how many players of FPS games, RTS games, and MMORPGS also play Civilization series games.

                            There is no comparison to this series yet. Total War doesn't even come close. Nor does any 4x RTS, or simulation builders like Anno 1404/Settlers 7, or Hearts of Iron III series. The fact of the matter is that on my friends list in steam, there's almost always somebody playing civilization 4 (and its someone you know from Battlefield, or Arma, or some other place on TG). Ratings don't matter a whole lot unless its an outlier. It has a 94 on metacritics, which means its in the top 10 or something all time. It also was the game of the year (something you wouldnt expect from the reviews in this thread from 2006) for 2006. Many of its biggest critics were fans of the earlier Civilization 2/3 iterations. It took a while before they finally figured out the new game, and started enjoying it.


                            On Colonization: Civ4 did release a expansion called Colonization updated with the same engine. It was OK, but relatively short and unworthy as it was more of a copy of the original colonization concepts rather than an updated one.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Sid Meier's Civilization IV

                              if you guys love civ4 definitly check out the mod rise of mankind. It basicly puts tons of stuff into the game you would think should of gone into the game in the core. it plays differently too. it feels like a whole new game really. but civ5 is gona be awsome cant wait for that

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