Civilization Revolution was released in the summer of 2008 and is the latest game in the Civilization series. It’s the first Civilization title designed by legendary game designer Sid Meier since the original Civilization. It’s also the first Civilization title designed from the ground up for next-gen consoles and handhelds. The game is available on Xbox 360, PS3, Nintendo DS, the iPhone/iPod Touch, and the iPad.
Since the game’s release, numerous reviews have praised CivRev for its intuitive controls, streamlined gameplay, and great visuals. While the game is definitely simpler than Civilization IV, key elements that contributed to the additive Civilization gameplay are still there. The result is a fast-paced and action-filled game that’s very easy for first time Civilization players to pick up and play. Veterans will also find that the series’ famous “just one more turn” addicting gameplay remains intact.
Single Player and Multiplayer
Civilization Revolution supports both single player and multiplayer. For single player, players can play on randomly generated maps with four AI opponents. There is also a “Game of the Week” feature in which everyone can play on the same map each week and compare their scores on the leaderboards. The game also includes several scenarios.
For multiplayer, Xbox Live is used for the Xbox 360 version and GameSpy Arcade is used for the PS3 version. You can host private matches, play team games, and join free for all games. For Nintendo DS version, WIFI multiplayer is supported.
A typical CivRev game can last 3 to 4 hours, largely due to the streamlined gameplay, shorter tech tree, and smaller map. For example, the worker unit is eliminated. To build roads, now you simply open the city screen and spend gold to instantly construct roads between two cities. In addition, roads have unlimited movement in CivRev, but entering a city costs 1 movement point. Both changes helped reduce the amount of micromanagement.
Civilization Revolution contains 16 civilizations, each represented by a leader. Every civilization has special starting bonus and also era bonuses which they gain as the game progresses through the various eras. The era bonuses are cumulative.
There are unique units in CivRev for some civilizations but they only look different. Some unique units have stats increase, but that’s due to an era bonus of the civilization. There are no unique buildings although some civilizations have building related era bonus.
Unlike Civ4, in which units have a single strength value, units have separate attack and defense values in Civilization Revolution.
Most battles in Civilization Revolution are fought on the army level. When you have three units of the same type in the same square, you can form an army which has the combined strength of the three units. When a unit has achieved three victories, it becomes a veteran unit. Winning more battles will promote the units to elite level which allows the unit to learn special abilities (promotions). When a unit wins combat against another unit with equal or higher strength, there is a chance a Great General unit will spawn. A Great General provides +50% bonus to all units in a stack.
One major difference between CivRev and previous Civ games is that units can only be upgraded by using the Leonardo’s Workshop wonder, and if you are the Germans, you can also take advantage of the automatic upgrade for elite units. The Leonardo’s Workshop only upgrades units once. If someone built Leonardo’s Workshop before you, you can get rid of obsolete units by disbanding them to get some gold in return.
Civilization Revolution introduces the new concept of naval support. When a naval unit is adjacent to a land tile, it can provide naval support to units fighting on that tile in the form of an attack bonus or defense bonus. The amount of bonus depends on the strength of the naval unit.
Wonders and Relics
In addition to the familiar wonders of the world, Civilization Revolution introduces a new type of wonder-like structures called relics. They are scattered across the map and the first civilization that discovers a relic receives its benefits. It makes exploration more rewarding and important.
All the wonders except those related to the victory conditions (World Bank and United Nations) can be rush-built either by gold or Great Builder.
Six different types of Great People provide special abilities upon their appearance, and are generated by a civilization’s total culture output (as opposed to a city’s turn-by-turn collection of great people points as in Civ4). These powerful units can hurry production in a city, research a technology, or settle in a city, providing various per-turn benefits such as +50% gold production.
You can win a game in Civilization Revolution in four ways. The first way is domination victory, which is achieved by capturing all enemy capitals. This is different than Civ4 in which you need to have 2/3 of the world’s land and population.
The second way is economic victory, which requires accumulating 20,000 gold and also the World Bank wonder.
The third way is cultural victory, which requires a combination of 20 total cultural events: number of flipped cities, great people (settled in city), and wonders built. In addition, the United Nations wonder is required to complete the victory.
The last victory type is space race victory, in which you build a space ship composed of various parts. The first civilization whose spaceship reaches Alpha Centauri wins the space race.
It’s not Civ5
It’s important to point out that Civilization Revolution is not intended to be a follow-up to Civilization IV. Some of the major features introduced in Civilization IV such as religions and civics are not included. The resources and diplomacy systems in CivRev are also much simpler, more comparable to those found in Civilization II. If you expect it to be like Civilization IV, you will be disappointed. However, if you treat it as a different Civ game, you will have lots of fun and find it a refreshing change.
For more detailed info on the game, please check out the CivRev Info Center and the various Civilopedia reference pages using the links at the left.
- North America: July 8, 2008 for all three versions
- Europe: June 13th for Xbox 360 and PS3 versions, July 8 for Nintendo DS
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