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Sid Meier's Civilization III

1 year ago

Feature: Changing history

Soren Johnson on challenging the norms of 4X games

“Sid [Meier] didn’t know he was inventing a genre back in ’91 - if he had he might have been a lot more careful. He was just making it up as he went along.” That’s how genres begin. By mistake. Somebody creates a set of rules and systems for the needs of a particular game, and then either people adopt and adapt those rules. Soren…

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2 years ago

Feature: Master of maps

Jon Shafer on designing Civilization 5, joining Paradox and making strategy games better

Jon Shafer was 21 years old when he became lead designer of Civilization V. Now working at Paradox on an unannounced project and on his own historical strategy game At The Gates in his spare time, he says he's learning from the likes of Spelunky along with the more obvious strategic influences. We spoke about how the second half of every Civ sucks, the part…

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3 years ago

Feature: Still clinging

Have You Played… Civilization III?

Have You Played? is an endless stream of game retrospectives. One a day, every day of the year, perhaps for all time. Civ III was the game that got me back into the Civilization series. Though, truth be told, I never got out of it - it's just that the years without a new release happened to coincide with my time at university, where booze,…

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Feature: A series of tubes

A Lament For The LAN Party

Before broadband and the connected world of information, we found different ways to mix our social life and our games. LAN parties. Where our PCs had a big group hug and let us kill one another in peace. Michael Johnson remembers those times. Growing up as a PC gamer in the 90's was a curious experience, the dawn of the internet age was upon us,…

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5 years ago

Feature: "It's the worst jello mold you've ever seen"

Firaxis On How Civ: Beyond Earth Really Isn’t Alpha Centauri

Someone's finally making an Alpha Centauri successor! Kinda. Civilization: Beyond Earth takes Sid Meier's famed turn-based strategy series (that Sid Meier only kinda works on these days) and flings it into the stars like a colonial frisbee. I got to play a little at a recent 2K preview event, but not enough to render much of a verdict other than, "I really want to see…

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Feature: Mohawks And Martians, Pt 1

Former Civilization IV Lead On Mars Game, Revitalizing RTS

Mohawk Games is an excellent name for a company. And so it is that former Civilization IV lead designer and Spore man Soren Johnson approaches me sporting the company haircut. It's a recent trim job for the old headshrub, he tells me, but he wears it well. However, the brain beneath the mohawk - the mind behind some of strategy gaming's greatest greats - is…

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