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Firaxis Announces Full-Scale  Civilization V  For PC
Firaxis Announces Full-Scale Civilization V For PC
February 18, 2010 | By Chris Remo

February 18, 2010 | By Chris Remo
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More: Console/PC



Facebook won't be the only place for more Civilization -- today 2K Games announced developer Firaxis Games is working on the next main entry in the long-running alternate-history strategy series, Sid Meier's Civilization V.

Due out this fall for PC, Civilization V will come roughly half a decade after the release of its predecessor, the highly-acclaimed fourth entry in the seminal series.

Last October, Firaxis founder and development director Sid Meier said the studio was going to "develop a unique new way to play Civilization," in the form of Civilization Network for Facebook, leading some series fans to question whether a new mainline PC entry was in the works.

Screenshots on the official site indicate a high level of unit and environment detail, as well as the surprising inclusion of hexagonal tiles, a first for the series. The logotype and graphic design treatment on the site suggests an Art Deco theme -- the predominant style of another successful 2K franchise, BioShock.

The newly-announced game is headed up by designer/programmer Jon Schafer, who joined Firaxis out of college as a long-time modder. He worked on Civ IV and was a lead designer on its well-received expansion pack, Beyond the Sword.

According to 2K, the game is built on a newly-developed engine which will again include multiplayer as well as offer considerable support for the modding community.

Civilization IV's lead designer, Soren Johnson, left Firaxis in 2007 to take a job with Will Wright's Maxis team, where he contributed to Spore and is now developing unannounced projects.

"Each new version of Civilization presents exciting challenges for our team," said Meier in a statement today. "Thankfully, ideas on how to bring new and fun experiences to Civ players never seem to stop flowing. From fully animated leaders and realistic landscapes, new combat tactics, expanded diplomacy and shared mods, we're excited for players to see the new vision our team at Firaxis has brought to the series."


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Comments


Billy Stever
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I'm looking forward to this. The Civ games have been some of my favorites for years. Since Civ 2. So much time spent building up arms and conquring lands. Good times.

Sean Parton
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Hex tiles eh? I guess they feel the advantages of using hexes for actual gameplay purposes outweighs the nostalgia rage/easy-to-grasp values of a square grid.



I'm interested to see what they bring to the table. One of the longest running series' I know that actually does improve with pretty much every installment.

Maurício Gomes
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Please, fix the boringness that happen lategame! Several Civ and Civ-like games I don't play to the end because near the end there are so much things to do, that it becomes boring (in some games, even the AI slows down...)

Brandon Layton
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The hex tiles thing seems like a great step forward. In the pictures it definitely seemed to make the terrain appear smoother and less tile-like. I'm curious if things such as unit direction and flanking will be available since this gives more control over positioning the troops. I read this though and my inner Civ nerd was jumping out of my seat, I can't wait.

Carl Chavez
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I estimate that I have spent over 1,500 hours over the past five years playing Civ 4, its expansions, and the Fall From Heaven II mods. I guess I'd better clear my schedule before fall hits...



In a way, this makes me think of the controversial "Nintendo Evergreen" analysis published earlier this week on Gamasutra. Never mind Nintendo's sales supposedly causing fewer available dollars for third parties; I start to think about how the most-played PC games (Civilization, WoW, Counterstrike, etc.) suck play time away from all other PC games, thus hurting PC game sales.

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Chris Remo
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Dave,



I think that the existence of Civilization Network as a totally separate product to Civilization 5 suggests Firaxis doesn't want to dilute the mainline Civ series. It seems like at this point we have the main Civ series, with the full depth of the franchise; Civilization Revolution on consoles, with the same basic structure toned down; and Civilization Network, for a likely more significantly simplified experience.

Jenn Bartlett
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As happy as I have been playing Civ IV, my family would be happier still if we could play 'hot seat' as in past editions. It is not economically feasible to expect a family to own more than one console and copy of the game to play against each other. As for Civilization Netowork, I hope it is not the equivalent of "Farmville" or "Mafia Wars" from Facebook .... those are utterly obnoxious. Here's to hoping for the best!

Tom Kammerer
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This will be a great addition to the series

Mike Jackson
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So how can the group of people that I still enjoy Civ4 et al with shout at Fraxis loudly enough to get them to prioritze network/multiplayer code. We're TIRED of OOS errors!!!! (Out of Sync) Pleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeease!



Thanks :)

Kevin Reese
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Thrilled with today's announcements. I have total confidence Civ 5 will be stellar! I've been playing the series since the first game, and have always loved the games.



I'm glad that they decided to have the console port and Facebook game was separate products, so they don't mess with the heart of the game: the PC series.



A good friend and I have been playing pretty much bi-weekly hotseat matches a night during the week. Great fun! Not to mention: cheap and healthy fun too! Please keep hotseat as a play option Firaxis :)



I also like how they announced the game so far into development. It really spits in the eye of the PC gaming norm these days of announcing a game 2 years prior to release, than delaying the game 3 times after that.

David Ravel
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Does anybody know who's leading the design on this?

Kevin Reese
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^^^ believe this addressed in paragraph 5 of the news story.

Carl Chavez
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@Jenn & @Kevin: on civilization5.com, they say Hot Seat is still an option.



@Mike: did you update to 3.19? I haven't seen any OOS errors in 3.19 (although I usually play multiplayer through LAN or hotseat, not over the Internet).



@Kevin: yeah, announcing a game when it's almost ready is definitely the right way to build positive hype. Announcing a game too early gives good early positive hype, but too many delays make the hype turn negative.

Gregory Kinneman
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Having just reinstalled Alpha Centauri, I must say I'm excited. However, I really haven't seen many changes since playing Civ I back in the early 90s. That's not necessarily a bad thing, it's just that the original was so innovative, and since then it's been a series of incremental improvements rather than dramatic changes. Hex tiles and more combat strategy seem like good ideas, and you don't fix what isn't broken, but let's see something really NEW from Civ 5.

Mike Jackson
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@Carl: 3.19 is definitely more stable. Up until a few months ago I thought the OOS errors we saw were due to internet play or playing with both Mac and PC players ... until we got a huge PC only game over LAN going. Granted, we're at the end of the tech tree and it's a huge map .... but the OOS errors happen every 10 turns now. :(

Josh Foreman
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Carl: "I estimate that I have spent over 1,500 hours over the past five years playing Civ 4"



I'm probably close. And now I'm old enough to seriously consider skipping 5 for that reason alone. I have a wife and kids who would like me around. Anyone else have Civ guilt?


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