|Sid Meier's Civilization Revolution|
|Release date(s)||PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
|Mode(s)||Single player, multiplayer|
Sid Meier's Civilization Revolution is a 2008 iteration of Civilization developed by Firaxis Games with Sid Meier as designer for the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Nintendo DS, Windows Phone, and iOS. A Wii version was originally expected but was put on indefinite hold. The lack of a PlayStation Portable version was attributed to a lack of development manpower.
A demo was released on Xbox Live Marketplace and the North American PlayStation Store on June 5, 2008. The demo allows players to play until 1250 AD on a fixed map as Cleopatra or Julius Caesar, and also allows multiplayer play. A similar demo (Civilization Revolution Lite) was released for iOS that allows play until the "Modern Era" as Julius Caesar, Abraham Lincoln, or Genghis Khan. It is also available on Xbox Live Marketplace as a fully functional game, without the use of a disc.
The main game of Civilization Revolution begins in 4000 BC, with a lone settler in the middle of a little-explored region. That settler has the capability to found a city, which, depending on its specific mix of geographical surroundings, begins harvesting food (for the continued growth of the city), production (for the creation of units and buildings), and trade (that can be then turned into either research points or wealth). In the early stages of the game, you will encounter uncivilized villages consisting of primitives such as barbarians and friendly villages. Over time, further settlers can be created, forming new cities; buildings can be built to improve each city's overall productivity; military units can be formed, focusing either on defense, offense, or exploration; technologies can be researched, allowing for newer buildings and units; etc. Buildings in a final category, "Wonders", provide major advantages to the civilization that builds it, either across their entire empire or just in the building city, depending on the Wonder. Meanwhile, rival civilizations are encountered, which can be both valuable trade partners, strategic allies, or dangerous enemies. Ultimately, each civilization competes for land and resources with the purpose of eventual military, technological, cultural, or economic domination.
Civilization Revolution is a turn based strategy game, with every "turn" representing the passage of several years within the game, which changes from 100 years in the beginning to two years by the end, reflecting the faster pace of contemporary society made possible by technological advancements. Later-era units and buildings are also more "expensive" to build (in terms of production points) than earlier ones, which is matched with cities' increased efficiency and population. Where the early game tends to be focused on exploring and expanding one's empire, the later game is dominated by the interactions forced upon the player by rival civilizations.
A victory can be achieved in four different ways. Unless specified in a scenario, all four victory conditions are open to be used. Different civilizations have distinct advantages over others depending on their bonuses.
- Domination: The player must capture all of the other civilizations' capital cities and hold them for one full round; but they do not need to destroy or capture every city.
- Culture: Obtain a total of 20 great persons, wonders, and/or converted cities in any combination, and build the United Nations wonder.
- Economic: Acquire 20,000 gold and build the World Bank wonder.
- Technological: Research all technologies necessary to build and launch a space ship, and be the first to reach Alpha Centauri.
If the player's civilization is nearing one of the above mentioned victory conditions, all other civilizations will declare war on them in an attempt to delay or stop them from winning. The construction of the World Bank, the construction of the United Nations, and the launching of the ship to Alpha Centauri can all be stopped by capturing the enemy's capital and palace.
Players can control one of 16 different civilizations, each with a different leader. Each civilization starts the game with a different special bonus that can be either a technology, a Great Person, or a special ability. As the game progresses through time, the civilizations also obtain new abilities after researching a specific number of technologies. In a given game each civilization can have up to four bonuses that vary from civilization to civilization. Many of the civilizations have specific specialized units that only they can build but unlike previous installments, these are for looks only. Special units do not possess stats beyond the normal unit but may have varying abilities.
There are also NPC barbarians who will declare war on any civilization they encounter, regardless of that civilization's strength or their own. In contrast to the barbarians in previous installments of the Civilization series, the barbarians in Civilization Revolution live in villages and generally attack from them, although they occasionally venture toward nearby units or cities. Also, the level of barbarian activity cannot be adjusted as in previous installments, although the level of barbarian activity changes in certain scenarios.
Civilization Revolution features multiplayer options, including match making and ranked games for up to four players (in free-for-all, one-on-one, and two-on-two team battle modes), as well as leaderboards and support for voice and video chat. Although many critics and players agree that the multiplayer is slow, there is an option to turn on a turn timer such as in chess to attempt to make the game go faster and one can only use the diplomacy panel and the city screen during other players' turns. Split screen multiplayer is not supported (you may move during other online players' turns but computer players will move when every human player has ended their turn).
For the Xbox 360, Nintendo DS and PlayStation 3 versions, each week a new Firaxis created scenario will become available to players for download. Players compete to earn the best Civilization Revolution leaderboard score for that scenario during that week. Firaxis has also released DLC for PS3 and Xbox 360 which includes wonders, relics, and even specific maps such as deserts, continent look-alikes and several others; new wonders include the Tower of Babel, the Leaning Tower of Pisa and several others which can be utilized in game like any other wonder.
On February 4, 2008 2K Games and Firaxis announced that the Wii version of Civilization Revolution was put on indefinite hold due to lack of manpower and no PlayStation 2 or PlayStation Portable editions of the game to share assets with. Firaxis programmer Scott Lewis explained, "CivRev was originally a Xbox 360/PlayStation 3 project and was in development for over a year before the Wii/DS platforms were added. The result was that the time and effort it would have taken to remake a game built for higher-end hardware from the ground up would simply have been too costly." On June 10, 2008, Sid Meier reaffirmed plans to develop a Wii version, stating that Firaxis had "no intentions of turning backs on the Wii version."
On 10 August 2009, 2K Games released an iOS version of Civilization Revolution in the App Store, available in various countries, including the USA, UK and Australia. Multiplayer support was added on 21 February 2013.
On 4 April 2012, it was released for Windows Phone.
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The game received mostly positive reviews by critics. As of October 30, Metacritic lists Civilization Revolution at 85% for the PS3, 84% for the Xbox 360, and 81% for the Nintendo DS. Average score for the iPhone version is 70%.
- Famitsu magazine scored the Nintendo DS version of the game a 28/40.
- GameInformer magazine gave the game a 9/10, stating that the controls work very well on the consoles, and, while the game is simpler than Civilization IV, the faster playability is very enjoyable.
- Game Revolution gave it a B-.
- GameSpot gave the 360 and PS3 versions a 9.0/10 and an editor's choice award, praising its gameplay and visual design but found the multiplayer to be slow.
- IGN gave it an 8.8/10.
- Official Xbox Magazine gave the 360 version a 9.0/10 as well as an editor's choice award. It also won Strategy Game of the Year from OXM for 2008.
- PlayStation: The Official Magazine gave the PS3 version a 4/5.
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- GameSpot News
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