2K Games and Firaxis have celebrated the 25th anniversary of the Civilization series of games by announcing Sid Meier’s Civilization VI. The game will become available on PC from 21st October this year, and is already up for pre-order on Steam to committed Civ enthusiasts.
The new game promises to provide players with "new ways to interact with your world" and new ways to expand your empires in the face of competition against the greatest world leaders in history. In a bullet pointed list, as published on the official site, the highlights of the upcoming civilization building strategy game are said to include:
- EXPANSIVE EMPIRES: See the marvels of your empire spread across the map like never before. Each city spans multiple tiles so you can custom build your cities to take full advantage of the local terrain.
- ACTIVE RESEARCH: Unlock boosts that speed your civilization’s progress through history. To advance more quickly, use your units to actively explore, develop your environment, and discover new cultures.
- DYNAMIC DIPLOMACY: Interactions with other civilizations change over the course of the game, from primitive first interactions where conflict is a fact of life, to late game alliances and negotiations.
- COMBINED ARMS: Expanding on the 'one unit per tile' design, support units can now be embedded with other units, like anti-tank support with infantry, or a warrior with settlers. Similar units can also be combined to form powerful 'Corps' units.
- ENHANCED MULTIPLAYER: In addition to traditional multiplayer modes, cooperate and compete with your friends in a wide variety of situations all designed to be easily completed in a single session.
- A CIV FOR ALL PLAYERS: Civilization VI provides veteran players new ways to build and tune their civilization for the greatest chance of success. New tutorial systems are designed to introduce new players to the underlying concepts of Civilization so they can easily get started on a path to victory.
The newly published YouTube trailer, above, doesn't give a lot away but it's admittedly stirring, hammering home the concept and ambition behind Civilization VI.
In an interview with lead game designer Ed Beach, Polygon learned that there are big changes in the new game, compared to Civ 5. Cities will be different, in "as big a change for the economic side of the game as unstacking the armies was with Civ 5," says Beach. "We want to throw different things at the player at different times and make them have to adapt." Outside the cities you build you will control districts, for military encampments and farms etc (12 kinds of districts supported).
Changes to cities and the city planning you do may be the most noticeable new aspect of Civ 6 but there will also be changes as outlined above in the bullet points, impacting your gameplay and strategy. In the new game you will also see a distinct difference in the strategies of the AI opposing world leaders, with their strong historical agendas. In other changes religion, trade and tourism are going to be back.
If you are new to Civ, or need a refresher or introduction to all the new stuff, the game designers have lined up plenty of tutorial missions to build up the complexity seasoned players appreciate.