Title: Sid Meier’s Civilization VI
Developer: Firaxis Games
Publisher: 2K Games
Platform: PC, iOS, Nintendo Switch
Category: Turn-based strategy
Release Date: October 2016 (PC), December 2017 (iOS), November 2018 (Nintendo Switch)
How we got the game: Bought it for the Nintendo Switch
I’ll be honest, I wasn’t quite sure what to expect from this game. I heard it was a simulation game, perhaps something similar to SimCity and the like but with an empire angle instead, which is what caused me to pick it up. I’m brand new to the Civilization series and, so far, it’s been an interesting ride.
Being a turn-based strategy game, Civilization VI gives the player the task of dominating the planet through military, technology, or culture might.
Each turn allows players to found cities under their chosen world leader. The player then cultivates and grows their empire with their citizens, making them into settlers to found new cites, scouts to explore the world, builders to craft different districts for the cities, warriors to defend the empire, and plenty more. Technology and culture trees allow your citizens to advance further in the periods of development as the world evolves around them.
The buttons aren’t too difficult to learn, but I did find myself accidentally ending my turn once in a while when I was first learning to play. During your turn, you choose everything, from what your city is currently developing to how far any citizens outside of the city are moving, from scouts to warriors. You can also communicate with the other world leaders and, depending on your friendship level, may be able to make deals or trades with them.
Or go to war. That’s a thing.
Mainly the buttons are the main A button or using the analog stick to move your citizens to where they need to go along the world map. Decisions on what your cities should develop tech- and culture-wise, as well as the number of turns they take, all need to be considered when plotting your path to world domination. It’s a lot of strategy and gives a great challenge.
I was impressed with the graphics of this game, both with the scenery and the models of the character avatars. It was a clean, crisp looking game, especially when one considers all of the different eras that a game goes through. The world map was beautiful, making it enjoyable for me to send out scouts — with their adorable dogs — to all corners of the world to see what they had in store.
The music itself wasn’t as memorable, however. Rather, it was soft, no doubt allowing players to concentrate on making the best decisions they could for their citizens during their turn. The music and sound effects were subtle, which was appreciated. The voice acting for the avatars weren’t too bad at all, though. I was impressed at the voice acting for the most part.
There does not seem to be one specific story line that this game follows. Rather, there are over a dozen historical world leaders that you can use as your avatar for your play through. With your leader, your task is to dominate the world throughout several eras of development while competing against other human or computer controlled leaders.
The story goes depending on how well you play. Want to go through the story and win with the mightiest army? You can do that. How about being the pinnacle of technology or culture? Sure. Navigating through the world and determining how you want to win depends on your actions as well as your reactions to the other players. Rival leaders may have special conditions and their A.I. may reflect some behavior that their real counterparts may have exhibited while ruling.
Replayability is this game’s middle name. With several leaders to choose from as well as multiple ways to run your empire and interesting AI players, no two playthroughs will ever be virtually alike. One playthrough can be a bit long, however, considering how many turns are in a game, so be mindful of the clock when playing. Time can pass by very quickly with this game!
Civilization VI gets…
4 out of 5 lives.