TL;DR – Here, we have a beautiful game with a lot of promise but is not quite there yet.
Rating: 3.5 out of 5.
Disclosure – I paid for this game.
Humankind Review –
One genre of Video Games just clicks with me more than others, like on a deep physiological level. That genre is the strategy game, well, more than that. It is the particular 4X genre of strategy game where you eXplore, eXploit, eXpand, & eXterminate, and if it is turn-based, even better. I can spend hundreds of hours exploring the mechanics of each game, hitting each of those four X’s. In the realm of the historical-empire-builder 4X world, there has been one crown, Civilization. Well, today, we take a look at a game that is coming for that title, and while it doesn’t quite get there, it does come close.
The first thing I want to mention is just how beautiful this game is. When you first jump into the game and see a river crashing over the cliffs into a valley full of lush jungle and red earth, Well, it will take your breath away. A lot of care has gone into everything feeling as if it is a natural part of this world. Part of what helps is a mountain of terrain features that make even areas that could be dull, like the frozen poles, still feel interesting to explore. I also like how they have introduced height to the game, making the world feel more grounded. You can see the legacy of Endless Legend throughout this game in the design of the terrain, but it has been tailored to be like Earth but stylized, and I think they get that balance right. To add to this, while watching this stunning game, you also get to hear a soundtrack that I have yet to get sick over these[redacted] hours that I have played, and I am listening to it now as I write this review. If I had to pick my favourite track from the game, it would be Mercury, but they are all great.
We are getting a new expansion for Civilization VI, well, not quite. Over the next year, we have a season pass, the New Frontier Pass, which will give us several new Civilizations and Game Modes(which you can find out more information HERE). The final new Civilization has been announced, so let’s dive into Portugal.
João III of Portugal Overview
Civilization Leader: João III Preferred Religion: Catholicism Civilization Capital: Lisbon Civilization Bonus: Casa Da Índia – International Trade Routes can only reach cities on the coast or with a Harbour, +Yields on International Trade Routes. Trader units get +range on Water and can embark from the start of the game. Leader Bonus: Porta Do Cerco – All units get bonus sight, bonus trade route when you meet a civilization for the first time, Open Borders with all City-States. Unique Unit: Nau – Cheaper maintenance, Starts with one free promotion, has two charges to build Feitorias. Unique Tile Improvement: Feitoria – +Gold, +Production, Portugal gains +Gold, +Production to all trade routes to a city with one. Must be built in a foreign city with Open Borders on the coast next to a bonus or luxury resource. Cannot be removed. Unique Building: Navigation School – Replaces the University, +construction of Naval units, +science for every two Coast or Lake tiles in the city, +Great Admiral Points. Cities: Viseu, Évora, Faro, Guimarães,
TL;DR – Conflict on a planetary scale that combines orbital mechanics with the chaos of Worms
Rating: 3.5 out of 5.
Disclosure – I paid for the game.
Interplanetary Review –
When you play online games with a group of friends occasionally, there will be the call of “what does everyone have?” followed by everyone scanning through their Steam lists for options as a suggestion after suggestion gets vetoed by a different member of the group. Last week this happened with my friends and them someone threw out the request Interplanetary, a game that I played a bit when it first came out in 2015 but hadn’t thought much of it since. Then we discovered that Interplanetary had an Enhanced Edition and well we loaded it up and cried havoc and let slip the dogs of war.
So to set the scene, Interplanetary is a game set in what I would assume is a very dystopian universe. You play the role of one of the planets in a solar system that has just descended into war. You don’t have access to space ships, but you can build railguns on your planets and rain down fire across the solar system. From a mechanics perspective, Interplanetary is a turn-based artillery –focused strategy game. In your turn, you can build new weapons, resource, or defence buildings. You can pick research to boost your attack, and most importantly, you can fire your weapons. This is a game that takes a lot of inspiration from Hard Science Fiction so where you position your weapons on your planet is essential as it rotates, as it orbits around the sun. To attack, you will need to set an orbital insertion path while taking into account the orbits and gravity of every other planetary body in the solar system.
TL;DR – So how well does Civilization 6 capture Ethiopia with its new entry? It’s raining faith Halleluiah, its rain faith, amen
With the drip-feed of content coming out of Civilization VI’s New Frontier pack we have already gotten a look at the Maya, Gran Colombia, and now Ethiopia. Given that Ethiopia is the first of these civilizations that has grabbed me, I thought it best to sit down and have a look at just how well they have implemented it in-game. After that, we will also spend a little bit of time looking at the other additions to the game. But to refresh ourselves, let’s take a look at Ethiopia’s bonuses.
TL;DR – A good improvement to the game that fixes a lot of the issues I had with Season One.
Score – 4 out of 5 stars
Last year the good folks over at Firaxis Games did something I won’t ever have called, they released a Battle Royale mode for Civilization VI. At first, it sounded absurd because a turn-based strategy game is not the place you would expect to see this kind of mode. However, the more I thought about it, the more it did make sense because isn’t Civilization just one extended Battle Royale mode? Only instead of the growing wall of doom, you have Alexander and all his horses. You can find our review for Season One HERE, but with the announcement of Season Two, we thought it was time to jump back in and see the improvements first hand.
For those who have managed to miss that Fortnite world domination over the last few years, a Battle Royale style game is when you start dropped on a map with very few resources. You need to arm yourself and expand your abilities and quickly because everyone else on the map is doing the same thing, and there are only so many loot drops to go around. However, this is not a mode you can turtle in because a wave of horror, in this case, fallout, is closing in making the map smaller and smaller and slowly forcing people to crash into each other and then it is last one standing. The thematic paint that Red Death puts on this is that nuclear weapons have destroyed the world and there is one spaceship taking you to safety. The only problem is that everyone wants a seat of the last ride out of town, but there is only room for one.
TL;DR – A game that sits in the middle between Civilization and Total War, taking things that work from both.
If there is one genre of games that I will always been drawn to, it is the 4x (EXplore, EXpand, EXploit and EXterminate) strategy genre. It can be in space, in a fantasy realm, in the past, or somewhere completely new, I don’t care just hook it up straight to my veins. When I heard that Soren Johnson, the lead designer of Civilization IV, was diving back into the genre my interest was peaked and now that I have had a chance to play the game I can see why. One thing I do need to point out before we proceed, this is an “early access” game in that it is not yet finished. This means that this is only a first look, a first impression of the game and not the full review, which is why there is not a score above.
So to set the scene, Old World (or as it is styled Ōld World) is a game set in the past charting the dawn of civilization through the classical era to almost the medieval era. In it, you play one of seven civilization/leaders from the dawn of time. Ashurbanipal of Assyria, Nebuchadnezzar of Babylonia, Dido of Carthage, Hatshepsut of Egypt, Philip of Greece, Cyrus of Persia, and Romulus of Rome. However, unlike Civilization and other similar games, you don’t just hold on to the one leader for the whole game, because like in real life, leaders get old and die. This means as well as maintaining your expansion you need to make sure your heirs are ready to take over. This brings the game a little of the way into the territory of the popular Total War series. On the whole, I quite liked the dynastic politics in the game, however, has the game goes on and your heirs and siblings etc start popping out multiple babies a turn, it can be a bit hard to keep track of. Which is just about when your sister kills you in your sleep for ascending to the throne over her as what happened in my first game. You also need to keep different dynastic families from squabbling, giving you potential problems from afar and within.
TL;DR – Today we chart out the Civilization VI City List in Map from the Rise and Fall Expansion
We continue our tradition of looking at Firaxis Games Civilization VI by charting the cities of their new expansion Rise and Fall. If you would like to see our original map looking at the base game you can Click Here, our mapping of the expansion Click Here, and if you would like to see the cities for each civ in the base game Click Here. Now before we start, I just want to point out that these city locations are not meant to be pinpoint accurate, the groupings and questionable locations of some cities make that impossible. Just think of this more of a general guide to where they are located. Also for our mobile guests, there will be a lot of images incoming, so even though I have tried to keep them small, now would be a good time to check that you are using wi-fi and not data.
TL;DR – It takes the formula of Civilization VI and adds to it in very different and unexpected ways boosting the core game and adding some new flavour to the experience
Score – 4 out of 5 stars
If there is one thing that you can almost reliably count on is that a Civilization game is going to get an expansion at some point (and hopefully more than one). It is one of those gaming truisms, like there will be a controversy with each Grand Theft Auto game release, or Nintendo is going to Mario up every console it makes, the things that help make life that little bit more predictable in a world of chaos. So today we are going to explore Civilization VI’s (see review) first expansion pack Rise and Fall, which both describes some of the mechanics in the game but is also a homage to the popular mod Rhye’s and Fall.
TL;DR – We continue to chart Civilization VI as we dive into the new expansion pack and map out all the new civilizations.
For today’s map, we looking at the new Rise and Fall expansion for Civilization VI. So we are including everything in the base game of Civilization VI, as well as what was included in the Poland, Viking, Australia, Persia/Macedonia, Nubia, and South East Asia DLC packs, and today we are adding upon that the Rise and Fall expansion pack. If you would like to see our original map looking at the base game you can Click Here, if you would like to see the cities for each civ in the base game Click Here. A big thanks to everyone over at Civfanatics who helped by collate all this information in their Features Thread. Now there are going to be a number of large images after the page break, so if you are on a mobile device and need to watch your data, now is the time to jump onto Wifi.
TL;DR – Persia and Macedonia are great new additions to Civilization 6, even if they do raise some questions about ‘civilizations’
So the Spring Patch and new DLC for Civilization VI has been out for a week and now that I’ve had a chance to give Persia and Macedonia a play through I thought I would look at how well they have been implemented in the game. So to do this we will first chat a bit about the changes made in the latest patch to the game as a whole, we’ll then look at Persia and Macedonia focusing at how well they have been represented as well as, how well they have been implemented in the game, and then finally we will take a moment to look at the issue of ‘civilizations’ that this new DLC raises.