All Conquering: Civilization V

An epic Civ V trailer sits below the click, and it contains plenty of game footage, as well as featuring the dev team talking about their plans for the fifth in the absurdly popular strategy series. Interesting that modding is at the forefront of their angle of attack this time, something that they say was inspired by modder responses to the previous game. Anyway, go have a look, I think this is one of the more interesting videos we’re going to get this week.


  1. TenjouUtena says:

    It looks nice, but it’s not Half Life Two Episode Three like Firaxis promised it would be!

  2. Peter Radiator Full Pig says:

    I am hugely excited about this game. Civ games have always held a facination for me.
    I may well fail some exams due to this game. :P

    However, diplomacy? Im not holding my breath. How many times have they tried to fix it?

    And “realistic graphics”. I cannot imagine a feature id like less than this. Totally suprefelous, and potentialy, stopping me from playing it on my laptop.

    I really hope there comes out a 2d mod for the game. Make it less taxing on my ageing hardware.

    • Centy says:

      They have said in some previous interviews that the engine is very scalable for your exact reason people like it on their laptops but it is nice to have nicer visuals for a main pc. Thing is though I think given each version of Civs graphics overhaul it has kept right its about what I think most people would expect. Plus they are really going to be pushing hard the Facebook version for people unable to run the full version.

    • Nesetalis says:

      one very good thing that came out of the creation of netbooks… lower powered gaming :D

    • Peter Radiator Full Pig says:

      If i had the greatest pc machine ever invented, i still would not wish for 3d graphics in Civ 5, and a lot of other games.
      Its just bloat, really.

      Like when medevial 2 had all those different models! Every character looks different! Different tunics, shields, emblems, hairs, eyelids!
      You can zoom in and just play spot the difference!

      Useless idea, that game was bloody huge, and im sure thats half the reason. Waste of time, processing power, graphics card, energy, coding and space.

      If there is a 2d version shipped, then when i buy the game, im going to look for an “illegal” version that hopefully rips out all that crap.

    • Grape Flavor says:

      I’m sorry, but get with the times. I’m sure some people complained when the SNES came out with its additional cost and wasteful bloat of additional pixels. As computing technology progresses, games will progress with it. No one is stopping you from playing Civ II or emulating old Atari games on your laptop. I’m sure the system requirements will be plenty reasonable for a game in 2010 – Firaxis has no track record of requiring ridiculous hardware.

      I still adore my N64, but I don’t sulk around holding grudges against game devs for not developing for it any more. Sounds like you might need to do the same.

    • Derf says:

      I’m not alone in the anti-3D world! It really is bloat in 95% of cases.

    • Vinraith says:

      When it comes to grand strategy games that are being played on what is basically a 2D map (eg. anything set on Earth) 3D graphics really are less functional and less attractive than well done 2D. The more hardcore strategy titles still haven’t transitioned for exactly this reason, but if you want to have any mainstream appeal at all the kiddies demand shiny 3D even if it makes no sense in this context. It’s a shame, really, especially given how well 2D graphics age compared to 3D.

    • Thirith says:

      I enjoyed the diplomacy options in Alpha Centauri a lot; the diplomacy in later Civilization games never quite lived up to that. I wonder why…

    • Dawngreeter says:

      I wish it was a board game, computerizing is a bloat. No minis though, cardboard chits all around please. I don’t have enough space on my shelves for minis.

    • Nalano says:

      Probably, Thirith, because the limitations on the market won’t allow it. SMAC and SMAX had sort of personality ‘archetypes’, which might not gel for AI leaders that are supposed to be analogs of real life historical figures, much in the same way Civ4 tiptoed around religion by basically making them all equal.

      Or, to put it another way, the leaders in SMAC had weaknesses – negative attributes. No leader in Civ4 has negative attributes, only positive ones.

    • Nalano says:

      Furthermore, the number of leaders in SMAC were capped. Civ4 has dozens – everybody and their mother wants their nation represented, after all – which leads to a lot of samey-ness when it comes to leadership.

  3. Bowlby says:

    I don’t really know how I feel about the UI and “ultra-realistic” graphics. :S

  4. correnos says:

    Generally, the graphics looks really nice. Not sure if I go for the new fog of war though (I’m assuming that’s what the thick clouds are).

    • Grape Flavor says:

      I’m pretty sure tiles are just darkened for FOW like they’ve always been, from looking at screenshots. I do wonder how the cloud thing works but I doubt Firaxis will let clouds obstruct gameplay.

  5. Rob says:

    That’s a pretty impressive text-to-speech demo they have there.

    • Jake says:

      Maybe they are trying for brand recognition in the way the game name is pronounced. Eventually everyone will say it exactly like that robot announcer.

  6. Schaulustiger says:

    Looks and sounds very nice, but I’m waiting for some hands-on experiences by people before I get all hyped up.

    • Jockie says:

      I’m a shameless Civ fanatic the words Civilisation 5 are enough to get me pretty badly hyped up.

  7. Sinnerman says:

    There is a good e3 preview of this over at the escapist. Think that this might be a good excuse for me to build a new PC.

  8. SirDorius says:

    Inlude an option for a mini HUD and this game can’t possibly fail

  9. Pox says:

    10km tall catapults and bright pink lines along international borders are “ultra-realistic”? :P

    • Peter Radiator Full Pig says:

      Sure, you laugh now. But back before modern technology, that was the only way.
      It took a 10km catapult to see where the pink lines were.

    • Riaktion says:

      You are aware that the purpose of trailers is the gratitious use of Hyperbole… yes?

      Feel free to get over yourself

    • Riaktion says:


  10. Sobric says:

    Looking good (although I suppose it’s a shame that the graphics might not allow some people to play).

    I love that they have focused on the mod community so much, as it is very strong. I played vanilla civ IV with SevoMod (as it gave the best experience at the time), but was surprised that by Beyond the Sword most of Sevo’s changes had made it to the game in some form or another. They really did listen to community input.

    Hopefully Civ 5 will take the core game from BtS and add on some new gameplay elements (like the hexes, better diplomacy perhaps, better civic system). But saying that I wouldn’t be upset at changes to the core mechanics, if they work well.

    • Chris D says:

      Does anyone else miss the advisors from Civ II?

    • Chris D says:

      That wasn’t actually supposed to be a reply this time, which is why it has no bearing on your comment whatsoever, sorry.

    • Sobric says:

      Only the military advisor:

      “We must BUILD MORE WALLS”

    • Chris D says:

      My favourite was when he’d wander on drunk and singing. They should totally bring him back.

    • Nick says:

      Let’s do lunch, sir.

    • Foxfoxfox says:

      Oh God yes please bring the high council advisors back!
      link to

      Not only the subject of much mirth but frankly a very colourful and clever way to offer tutorial advice.

  11. Mojo says:

    This looks like the biggest update to the Civ concept in over a decade. I’m looking forward to it.

    (Seriously, guys, what’s wrong with that captcha system?!)

  12. Jeremy says:

    I can’t wait to brag about scores.

  13. Splynter says:

    I don’t think there really is any question about a Civilization game being great. …Alpha Centauri 2 please?

    • Bowlby says:

      I would be so much more interested in an AC sequel.

    • Splynter says:

      Then again, they’d probably just reboot it as an FPS…

    • SanguineAngel says:

      I neeearrrly bought Alpha Centuri again today. I played the heck out of that game in my time.

      I would put down a LOT of money into a decent sequel.

    • Splynter says:

      There aren’t many games I’ve played as much as Alpha Centauri. I just recently broke my disc by stepping on it in the middle of the night… :( A new AC would be one of my most wanted releases.

    • jalf says:

      Crazy conspiracy theory:

      Remember how Colonization was remade as an expansion/mod for Civ4?
      Sooo, if they do something similar for Civ5, what game could they possibly remake?

    • CMaster says:

      Honestly, that would be a huge dissapointment.
      What made Alpha Centauri so interesting and special couldn’t be achieved in a Civ mod.
      The custom unit builder, the spectacular terrain + weather system, etc. Hell, I’m not even sure if you could pull off the fungus and feel of terraforming properly.

    • snv says:

      According to the FAQ on Firaxis they do not own the rights to Alpha Centauri :(

      Cases like these are why i hope that publishers will become obsolete faster.

    • yogSo says:

      Just wanted to add my voice to the chorus: We want Alpha Centauri 2, even if it has “ultrarealistic graphics”!

    • Thants says:

      They could still make Shmalpha Schmentauri.

    • Jhoosier says:

      “They could still make Shmalpha Schmentauri.”

      How about Beta Scorpii?

  14. Schizoslayer says:

    I’m with people on getting a smaller less obtrusive UI. The Civ 4 UI was good in that it gave you the information you needed with a minimum of fuss.

    Also the rivers look horrible compared to those in Civ 4 as they appear to be extensions of the ocean material and it just doesn’t look like a river.

    I’m interested in everything else they are doing though.

    I would also welcome a 2D version of Civ 5 that can be run on a netbook.

    • Jeremy says:

      I agree, it seems with the successful insanity of “casual gamers” or even how multi-tech everyone has become, it is necessary to have a few different outlets for a game to be played. Stardock I think has done a good job of implementing quality 2D options for its games to be played, most recently with Elemental development.

    • Bowlby says:

      They are doing a Facebook version of Civ, which I’m cautiously optimistic of.

    • Jhoosier says:

      I would potentially give up all my private info to be able to play Civ on Facebook. Not least for the hilarity of annoying all my family members who play Farmville.

      “Jhoosier has reached the Stone Age. Click here to help him reach the Bronze Age.”
      “Jhoosier is being overrun by barbs. Click here to send him an axeman.”

  15. CMaster says:

    I’m always saddened to see that they’ve never developed the fantastic terrain system in SMAC.
    In fact, I’m always somewhat saddened that a lot of the ways in which SMAC pushed the Civ games forward have been abandoned.

    Still, been playing a lot of Civ 4 latley, hope this one willl be great too (only Civ game I haven’t liked so far was Civ III)

    • Lukasz says:

      Yeah. WTH is all that about?
      SMAC had amazing terrain, ground breaking at the time if you forgive me the pun. The flat terrain is really a step back.

  16. Alisha says:

    Anyone know who the last civilization in the Civ 5 trailer is? I see the Egyptians, Vikings, Ottoman Empire, and the Japanese however the last group with the guy in white is the one I’m not sure about.

    • yogSo says:

      @ Alisha: You mean the sitting old man? I think he’s some kind of druid, so it would be the Celts, probably.

  17. Bigfoot_King says:

    to be honest I really don’t know what I want from a new civ game really enjoyed civ 4

    • Peter Radiator Full Pig says:

      AI, empasis on the I? Working diplomacy? Moddability? Better multiplayer?
      Free massages?

    • Garg says:

      For me the biggest reason why this looks to be a must upgrade from Civ4 is the way armies slug it out. Once people started getting mega stacks of units in Civ4 wars became a real chore. It looks like that has been fixed in Civ5, along with a ton of other improvements.

  18. Zoolooman says:

    Seriously excited. I preordered the deluxe edition back in May, and I’ve been poring over the improvements with my fellow Something Awful posters.

    Can’t wait. :)

  19. terry says:

    Why is Borderlands showing up in the related stories? I hope this is not an omen.

    Anyway, I am very interested to see how this turns out, although there wasn’t a whole lot on display there that made me go “oh neat” it looked pretty solid and didn’t seem watered-down at all. Quietly anticipating it.

    • Thants says:

      You haven’t heard that they’ve decided to turn Civ 5 into an FPS?

  20. Dinger says:

    The MLRS fires perpendicular to the direction of travel of the carrier, not directly over the cab. Why would you fire rockets directly over the cab?

    Realism fail. I’ll bet their churches don’t have the apse facing east either.

  21. lemmy101 says:

    I just did a nerdy spooge.

  22. A-Scale says:

    What was on that bloke’s shirt that had to be blurred out?

  23. UsF says:

    What is on that guys shirt (left side) and why is it blurred out?

    And why can’t I go foward in the video? ._.

  24. Jubaal says:

    Sadly there is no mention of Play-by-email. I really hope they keep that option in.

  25. Medina says:

    Looks like Civ IV and Massive Assault had a baby. Me likey.

    Really looking forward to the combat changes. Superstack armies of Civ IV got boring real quick.

  26. ChaK_ says:

    need a UI rework, so playskool

    other than that it looks great

  27. Clovis says:

    Weird. The pic at the top seems to show a fancy multi-rocket shooting thing on wheels, but aren’t those like WWI soldiers in front of it?

    What crazy game is this again?


  28. Pace says:

    Man, I think I’m going to have to go and start a game of Civ IV tonight.

  29. El_Capitan says:

    Eric Jorden – Tool programmer…

  30. El_Capitan says:

    Eric Jordan – Tool programmer…

  31. Hmm says:

    There two things I already don’t like about Civilization 5 – the HUGE, console-inspired interface and Steam requirement. What a nasty move by 2K and Firaxis, make it a Steam-only game…

  32. ChampionHyena says:

    Now that Will Wright’s no longer quite a member of the industry and Peter Molyneux has gone dog-barkingly insane, Sid Meier is one of the few “legendary” game designers left of whom I am still absolutely in awe.

    You can keep your UI nitpicks, graphics concerns, and wish-it-were-Alpha-Centauris as you like. Good God, I just want more Civilization.

  33. utharda says:

    I’m buying it for the art-deco touches in the menu and tech tree subsystems.

    • Noumenon says:

      Lol. Soren Johnson picked all kinds of ultra-modernist music to give the modern era its feel in Civ IV, but I’m pretty sure the trailer had better things to talk about, like religion and civics. Is there anything new in this one?

  34. Mil says:

    I just hope the AI doesn’t cheat.


    • Thants says:

      Really, they should just spend their entire development time working on the AI. It’s one of the most important aspects of a game like this. I’m guessing the vast majority of people only play Civ against the computer.

  35. mrpier says:

    I’m thinking there should be a Panzer General mod for this somewhere in the future.

  36. Web Cole says:

    Loving the talk about making more casual players aware of the mods. Good stuff :D

  37. Noumenon says:

    They didn’t mention Civilization:Revolution at all. I was really hoping they’d take some lessons from that game. Sid did a lot of the design on it, and it was a lot more fun than Civ IV — the barbarians, getting to name your rivers, the economic victory milestones. Civ IV was great, too, and had deeper strategy, but when you’re playing Civ Rev you can’t really notice what’s missing.

    • Grape Flavor says:

      They’ve mentioned it in other videos. They said they’re taking accessibility and interface lessons from CivRev and melding that in to the greater complexity of the main series.

  38. chann says:

    I concur, your excellency.

  39. Grandstone says:

    I like how around the 2:50 mark, it’s obvious that whoever made the trailer had seen Ran recently.

  40. adam says:

    I’m kinda confused as to what Civ V will actually bring that we don’t already have.

    Visually it kind of looks the same with some 3D scenes, but visuals aside… what’s going to be new?

    • seras says:

      Hexgrid map and one-unit-per-tile tactical combat with ranged fire are the most obvious changes

      game looks sick and I’m happy to see it come on to Steam.

  41. dexter says:

    I wonder if Civ V will require the original DVD to run – like IV does? I’d love to run it on my netbook.

  42. Camille says:

    Only till my natural death could I tell which of what I have been doing is right or wrong, so now I have to try to do well in everything, and then wait to die a natural death.
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