Sweeping The Nation: Civilization V Demo

Hello, my lovers!

Clearly, we didn’t mention the Civ V demo last night because Alec’s opinion carries much more weight than your own. Why would you need to “try before you buy” when Alec has crafted the one true objective opinion* to guide your buying hand? No reason at all. Therefore, this Steam-requiring demo is of no interest to anyone. The launch trailer beneath the cut is equally uninteresting, for it can convey nothing which has not been conveyed in the definitive Wot I Think. Quake before our majesty.

*Quinns offers a secondary one true objective opinion over at Eurogamer.


  1. BT says:

    Cheers boys. Downloading now!

  2. pakoito says:

    I’d tap that. In fact, I did last night. Well-cut stuff.

  3. The Dark One says:

    I haven’t tried the demo yet, but the way combat works in Civ V sounds almost exactly like it does in the Pirates! remake, aside from the hexes.

  4. c-Row says:

    I said it before, but I will do so again: this is as close as we will get to another Battle Isle/History Line game, folks. :-)

  5. Daave says:

    Or you could eat some delicious Yorkshire toast.

    • Alexander Norris says:

      Isn’t that just coal jammed in the toaster in the hopes of heating the house up a little, but which failed to burn properly and is now being eaten covered in lard for want of butter?

  6. Batolemaeus says:

    It feels like the demo has some kind of elaborate cliffhanger algorithm to end just when it starts getting really interesting.

    • Rob Hale says:

      I know the 100 turn point seems to be just when things really start to get going.

      If you try hard enough you can have a mini-war but the likelihood of actually destroying another civ in 100 turns is pretty low.

    • Simon says:

      I managed to eliminate 2 civs and have the capital of the third one surrounded by the end of the second playthrough of the demo (as greece at Prince aka Normal difficulty).

  7. qx says:

    I fucking hate that we have to wait til the 24th to play this in Europe. I have it pre-loaded. It’s right here on my hard drive. And I can’t play it.

    • d32 says:

      Same here. What’s even more hate-worth is that it costs 50 of Steam Standard Currency ie $50 = €50.

    • Ramong says:

      Honestly in this day and age, with globalization and steam there really ain’t much of a excuse to release the game later in Europe and for a higher price…
      Seems like discrimination to me :(

    • Alexander Norris says:

      The “globalisation” we got was never about creating a really international market for all to benefit; it was about creating a system to facilitate corporations doing whatever they want while keeping the old barriers in place for consumers so they’d be forced to play the corporations’ game. :P

      Why would a business not want to charge 50€ in lieu of $50 if they can get away with it?

    • Ginger Yellow says:

      It’s (mainly) a bricks and mortar thing. For whatever reason, retailers in Europe (the UK at least, which is the biggest European market) like to release games on Friday. And to keep the retailers sweet, most publishers don’t let Steam release the game before bricks and mortar.

    • qx says:

      d32: Actually I bought it for $50 on Direct2Drive, but it’s required to download throught Steam, so it was a win-win for me.

      link to direct2drive.com

    • Rinox says:

      @ Gingeryellow

      Isn’t Germany the biggest games market in Europe? Not that it changes much.

    • mrmud says:

      I have friends who are playing it right now using VPN connections to trick steam into believing they are in the states.
      Havent bothered with it myself since im writing an AAR for AI War but if you want the game really badly its always an option.

    • Edgar the Peaceful says:


      I tried that. It seemed to work to a point – I got through to the US version of Steam; prices in Dollars etc. – but it wouldn’t let me decrypt the files and still had a release date of 24 September.

      To quote Airplane: What a pisser.

  8. UncleLou says:

    It’s annoying alright. Don’t mind pre-loading and fixed release dates/unlocking as such, but staggered release dates like this are just frustrating.

    To add insult to injury, I’d have two free nights now where I could play the game, but probably won’t be anywhere near a PC from Friday to Monday.

  9. Bossman says:

    Well, if you really want to play it right now you can just use the VPN trick:

    link to gamesync.net

    It does work but it might be against the EULA so Valve could ban your account if they find out.

    • Archonsod says:

      Possibly, though how Valve would be able to tell you were behind a VPN for nefarious game unlocking purposes and not say because you worked for an American corporation who insisted on using their US based proxies for access I don’t know. Nor would I know why Valve would actually care; it’s not like they themselves have anything to gain by staggering the release date.

      Only time I’ve known it to be a cause of problems is if your billing address indicates a different country when you buy something, but they seem to have calmed down with that now, presumably sick of receiving emails from annoyed Europeans pointing out we can cross national borders in less time than it takes them to drive to work.

  10. Dozer says:

    I’ve never really understood if there’s a downside to using seperate Steam accounts for every game you buy. After the MW2 cheater-ban epidemic of July ’10, I started to think it might be a good idea.

    Haven’t done it though. All my steamy eggs are in one basket (or egg-poaching pan?).

    • Celkiasian says:

      If you were VAC banned you would need to purchase that game again for full multiplayer but your games would still work. For a steam account ban I’ve only ever heard of it happening because of a charge back and with that aside you’d think the risk is statistically insignificant.

  11. MonkeyMonster says:

    I really really must not buy this. I am a firm follower of the 3am “just one more click” mantra and would lose some serious time to this. The new strategy required with armies and hexagons does make it look and sound really rather awesome. Anyway… back to minecraft

  12. drillerman45 says:

    I can’t understand why people pay £29.99 for a digital d/l only version of CIV5 when you can buy a physical boxed version pre-order at GAME for £22.49. Shouldn’t it be the other way round?

  13. Talorc says:

    Demo only goes for 100 turns. Cant buy full game in Australia till Friday.


    Aaaargh, seriously I have been considering for the last 5 minutes playing all sorts of VPN tricks to buy the game over the net and unlock RIGHT NOW GODDAMIT. I need to patiently wait for my nice special edition….

    Demo was great fun, and now I want to save my little save game to continue playing in the full version (hopefully you can)

    • Sabin says:

      I hoped to be able to import a demo save. My wife played the demo last night, and to her horror it ended at turn 100 but all went well as she immediately declared we need to buy this NOW. I was more than happy to comply.

      After the full client finished downloading we started it up and I expected to see our two demo saves in there, but it was not so. Googling for a way to get the old save didn’t help either.

      Oh well. My wife started a new game and is enjoying that just as much. Now that I have the game, I just need to figure out when I’m going to get a chance at it.

    • Willis says:

      There might be a trainer out there to help you with that. Wink wink nudge nudge say no more.

  14. DrGonzo says:

    People’s reaction to an 8/10 score is rather hilarious. My flatmate said to me last night, ‘Oh just read the Eurogamer review of Civ V and it’s not meant to be very good.’

    What?! An 8/10 is a great score and the review is very positive. Nowadays you can’t criticise a game in it’s review without people thinking your saying it’s shit.

    • stahlwerk says:

      It really is, isn’t it? Especially the comments that go “Oh up until the second to last paragraph this read like a 10/10, but then you trash on it needlessly, and that’s just not fair. Why u hatez, Eurogamez?”

      If the AI is problematic to the brink of randomness, why shouldn’t it weigh the score down? Especially in a game where such a huge part of the immersion is due to the “global community”? I don’t get the internet.

  15. Coins says:

    Demo has sold this. Ye gods this is so good.

  16. LionsPhil says:

    Ennnh. This is not a great demo, because even set to “I am a complete moron who has never touched a computer before” mode, the tutorial features just aren’t there.

    Another civ comes up to me and asks for a Pact of Secrecy against someone. What does that mean? My advisors are silent. I must give an answer.

    I try to pick a site for a new city. In Civ IV, when you held to move, the action buttons would dim if they were not valid at the target location. In Civ V, this is gone, and upon getting there I find it’s too close to a city-state (which I could already see—I just didn’t yet know the limits in this new world of hexes).

    I set my scout to auto-explore. It blunders into a city-state’s territory and pisses them off. So I can’t trust automation either.

    And the whole thing kind of feels…somehow fuzzy and imprecise, at the same time as feeling like an animated cut-to-the-bone boardgame. It’s not a good impression. Civ IV did a lot more handholding to get you used to the new changes it made.

  17. Satanicus says:

    I always knew there is good reason why I don’t use Steam. Seams I was right :D

  18. Vodos says:

    No, it sEEms you’re just an ignorant fool. The staggered release is not Steam’s doing, but the publishers/retailers. The retailers want to release games on Fridays in Europe, but the US ones do their releases on Tuesdays. They also don’t want Steam to sell the game before they do, therefore the publishers force Steam to do these stupid staggered releases.
    The prices are also set by the publishers.

  19. Willis says:

    There might be a trainer out there to help you with that. Wink wink nudge nudge say no more.

  20. artofme says:

    I agree that tutorial aspects are close to non-existant in this game. However, if one does not mind reading about the concepts in the Civ-o-Pedia (or whatever it’s called), the learning curve is not too steep.
    This is my first attempt at a Civilization game ever and I’ve fully succeeded in gaining an understanding of the game mechanics without a “hand-holding” tutorial intro.
    While I agree that, in this day and age with a VERY wide segment for these games, a thorough and user-friendly introduction is in order, the lacking of one in this game, still makes it playable. Albeit with a little patience.