Posts Tagged ‘Sid Meier’s Civilization: Beyond Earth’

XCOM And Civ Aplenty In Humble Firaxis Bundle

While Adam is larking about in XCOM 2, I’m replaying XCOM: Enemy Within to demonstrate how totally fine and unbothered I am that he has access and I don’t. It’s still really fun! Last night I ordered a cyberlady to punch a robodino so hard it exploded.

If you want to join in with not feeling bitter, the latest Humble Bundle is a cracker. It’s a big merry load of cheap Firaxis strategy games, with your XCOMs and your Civilizations and your Pirates! and your Starships and so on for not very much money at all. We can all be unbothered together.

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A Brand New UI: Alpha Centauri Redux

Alpha Centauri is one of the best strategy games ever made. It casts a long shadow, such that a game like Civilization: Beyond Earth [official site] cannot escape comparison, even though it wasn’t intended to be the direct spiritual successor many saw it as. But how would you improve on Meier and Reynold’s sci-fi masterpiece? Keegan Chua has some ideas. His Alpha Centauri Redux project is a fully documented attempt “to completely redesign the look and feel of the user interface in the Sid Meier classic”.

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Civ BE Rising Tide Patch Makes Peace Less Ridiculous

Oh, Civilization: Beyond Earth [official site], how sad you make me. You work so very hard to make me love you but… well, maybe you’re fundamentally unlovable. The Rising Tide expansion, that was a good try. You became more alien, less like your dad trying to wear a spacesuit, but gosh, you made a pig’s ear of Diplomacy, didn’t you? Bugs and bonkers design decisions queered the pitch.

But maybe it’s not too late. I hear there’s a big new patch intended to address one of your biggest problems; what flowers are you bringing to my door this time?

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Warpals – Civ: Beyond Earth’s Rising Tide Diplomacy Fix

When our Alec told us wot he thinks about the Rising Tide expansion for Civilization: Beyond Earth [official site], he grumbled about a nasty bug in its overhauled diplomacy system – a very playground bug. When you declared war on someone, your allies might not back you up. “Yeah, go on, I’ve got your back,” they’d say, “go on, ‘it ‘im!” Then you’d ‘it ‘im. Then your pals would turn their backs and start whistling as a Siege Worm thundered towards you.

Relax! That bug is now fixed, thanks to a swift-ish hotfix.

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Wot I Think – Civilization: Beyond Earth – Rising Tide

Rising Tide [official site] is the first, and some might say much-needed, expansion pack for Beyond Earth, the sci-fi Civilization V spin-off which met a somewhat muted reception. It’s out tomorrow, but I’ve spent the last few days with it.

It’s so much better. It’s so much worse.

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Over An Hour Of Civilization: Beyond Earth – Rising Tide

In our initial preview of Beyond Earth’s Rising Tide expansion [official site], Firaxis were keen to make it clear that the expansion would have a heavier sci-fi focus than the base game. They also spoke about the new diplomacy system, in which you interact with the leaders of opposing factions in hopefully more realistic ways. That’s what has been detailed in not only a new trailer but a full, hour-long livestream that took place yesterday, heralding a free weekend for the base game. Both videos and all the details are below.

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Watch 7 Minutes Of Civilization: Beyond Earth’s Rising Tide

Let's agree to call the expansion CIVBERT.

A rising tide lifts all boats, it’s said, and there’s some hope that the watery Rising Tide expansion will lift all of Civilization: Beyond Earth‘s [official site] systems and not simply provide a new shimmering surface for the same old ideas. Find out whether that seems likely via a video demonstrating some of the oceanic mechanics below.

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Interview: Civ Beyond Earth Devs Reveal First Expansion, “Nudging The Game Further Into True Sci-Fi”

‘Wait for the expansion’, is what RPS’ feeling about Civilization’s sci-fi spin-off Beyond Earth boiled down to. Well, now that expansion has been announced. Sid Meier’s Civlization: Beyond Earth – Rising Tide is due for release ‘this Fall’, and brings water construction and combat, a revamped diplomacy system and two new factions into play. A few days ago, I had a chat with Will Miller and David McDonough, Co-Lead Designers on the turn-based strategy title, about what’s planned, whether Beyond Earth was too conservative both in terms of breaking the Civ template and in its science-fiction, how war shouldn’t be a surprise any more, and whether this is considered redemption.

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Big 2.0 Update To Fix ‘Conservative’ Civ Beyond Earth

looking anything like its concept art might have helped, actually

Civilization: Only Very Slightly Beyond Earth, more like. While perfectly serviceable, Firaxis’ sci-fi themed strategy spin-off proved far too reluctant to step out of Civ V’s shadow for my tastes, and I haven’t been at all tempted to go back. Conventional wisdom had it that an add-on might add the verve and variety it needs, but it turns out there’s a 2.0 update planned which may (or may not) get Beyond Earth back into orbit.
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Sid Knows Best: Poppa Meier Builds Starships

Pew pew

Do you worry you’d call Sid Meier “dad”? A half-hour stream over the weekend with the Civfather showing off Sid Meier’s Starships (not anyone else’s) has been saved for posterity under the name ‘Sid Meier shows you how to build a Starship’ and I can’t help but imagine you, dear reader, sitting on his knee. “Can we put cannons there?” you ask. He smiles, a knowing twinkle in his eye, and adds some. He sneaks in a stealth system you didn’t ask for, knowing it’ll help turn this ship into a long-range sniper sort of thing, but you’re happy: you wanted lasers and Daddy Sid added some. This is getting awkward. I’m going to embed the video now. Let’s move on.

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Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Seeing Starships Footage Now

Sid Meier and Firaxis’ new thing, Starships, was announced last week, but all we got to see was a cinematic. Fortunately, Unca Sid did a talk at PAX South a couple of days back, in which he showed off the game proper. Those who could not drag themselves to a sweaty hall in Texas may now be similarly indulged. There are some bits and pieces of Civ in there – perhaps striving for commonality with Beyond Earth, which it shares a setting/fiction with – but primarily it’s about customising spaceships then making ’em fight.

Meier also tackles the thorny question “how do you put maps in space?” and clarifies that people who call themselves ‘marauders’ don’t tend to be terribly friendly.
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Sid Meier Announces Sid Meier’s Starships

There’s few game designers whose names alone perk my interest, but Sid Meier is one of them. He’s the videogame industry’s avuncular Werther’s Original dispenser, popping sugary, plastic-wrapped hexes into the hands of young designers everywhere. I met him once and I can’t remember if he was sat in a rocking chair, but let’s assume that he was.

I am now rocking because Firaxis have announced Sid Meier’s Starships, a new game set after and within the same fiction as the recent Civilization: Beyond Earth. Speaking to Gamespot about the announcement, Meier explained that it would be st in space, would feature “dynamically generated tactical combat”, and that the focus would be “starship design” and “interstellar adventure, diplomacy and exploration.” There’s an animated trailer below.

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Civ: Beyond Earth & Saints Row IV Steam Free Weekends

Loading SR4 up to take a shot for this post, I was surprised by how sensible my Boss looks.

Civilization: Beyond Earth does have a demo, but it’s limited to 100 turns – not many to feel how a Civ game ticks. Given lukewarm responses to it, you might want to see more. Here’s your chance: the full game is free for everyone to play on Steam until Sunday evening. Saints Row IV is also running a free trial weekend but surely you already know whether you’d like to be a superpowered scamp flying around cyberspace and punching aliens. Both are on sale too.

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Wot I Think: Civilization – Beyond Earth

“They should have sent a poet,” says astronaut Jodie Foster, struck dumb by wonder upon encountering alien intelligence at the end of the film Contact. It’s easy to feel the same way about Civilization: Beyond Earth, the latest iteration of Sid Meier’s venerable and mighty Civilization franchise. C:BE takes the player to the ostensibly virgin soil of a new planet, but it’s not long before one questions exactly how new this new world really is. Just to mix up the out-of-date science fiction references – is that the Statue of Liberty’s head protruding from the hex-grid ahead? You maniacs! It was Civilization V all along!

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Above And Beyond: Rediscovering Alpha Centauri

As we prepare to cast judgement on Civilization: Beyond Earth, Firaxis’ latest voyage into the unknown, we cast out minds back to Alpha Centauri’s treatment of humanity’s future. With a stronger emphasis on narrative, rigid factions and a malleable Planet, Alpha Centauri changed the Civ formula significantly and to great effect. We asked author and Icon deputy editor Will Wiles to examine the impact of future past.

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Sid Meier’s Demo For Sid Meier’s Civilization: Beyond Earth

A new life awaits you in the off-world colonies.

Civilization: Beyond Earth is, as I understand it, an alternate ending to Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome. What happens after the kids reach Tomorrow-morrow Land? Does Aunty Entity rebuild civilization? Will Max return? And what about supposed sightings of Ironbar Bassey with a gentle brute bearing more than a passing resemblance to Blaster?

You can find out now, if you aren’t already playing, as Firaxis have released a demo. Click that ‘Download Demo’ button over on Steam. I’ll give it a go too, actually.

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What Are You Playing This Weekend?

PLAY HARD with revengeance

It’s time to wrap up warm, RPS – thank goodness you’ve got just so many fetching scarves. The winter months are rolling in, which makes for the perfect excuse to build an intricate blanket fort around your chair and go into a weekend games-hibernation. It’ll be a tough life of hot chocolate and mince pies, but I believe in you and think you’ll come out the other side stronger than ever before. Or, at least, sated by the blood/love of your digital enemies/friends.

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Civ: Beyond Earth’s Intro Recreates Science Victory

Maybe we're not just awful lumps of meat!

A science victory in Civilization is awfully anti-climatic. Thousands of years of research, exploration, art, diplomacy, trade, war, survival, and human progress, and all you have to show for it is a little spaceship popping out your city then flying off the top of the screen. It’s nice, but lacks drama. That’s where Civilization: Beyond Earth begins, exploring what happens after humanity reaches the stars, so its intro movie offers an extended take on that blastoff. It’s all hope and fear and EMOTIONS. Imagine this next time you win a science victory, and try to hold in those little sobs of pride.

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Civilization Beyond Earth: 200 Turns On The Final Frontier

A whole new world. A new fantastic point of view.

…I’m so sorry.

However, I am pleased to report that sci-fi strategy game Sid Meier’s Civilization: Beyond Earth is not simply Civ V with green face paint on. It has the same hexes and it does have much of the same infrastructure as its historical-themed predecessor, but its transformation into something alien goes far more than miasma-coated skindeep. The essential framework of Civ remains, but the final frontier – for the 200 turns with beta code I’ve spent there – requires a very different sort of thinking.

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