creator Sid Meier said this week that he and his 2K-owned studio, Firaxis, are working on a project dubbed "Civilization Network
," a rendition of the strategy game for Facebook, due in 2010.
The announcement comes after the most recent franchise entry, Civilization Revolution
, a turn-based strategy game that appeared on consoles and handhelds that streamlined the traditional PC-derived hardcore Civilization
"I wanted to let you know we’ll soon be looking for beta testers to help us develop a unique new way to play Civilization
," wrote Meier
on the CivFanatics.com forum on Wednesday. "Ever since we finished Civilization Revolution
last year, I’ve been looking at ways of expanding the Civ
gameplay experience to include solo, competitive and cooperative play to take advantage of the uniqueness of social networks."
By creating a game for the social network Facebook, Meier and Firaxis are tapping into an audience that boasts 300 million accounts. It would be the first time that Firaxis enters the social gaming space, which is dominated by companies such as Zynga (Farmville
), PlayFish (Pet Society
), and Playdom (Sorority Life
Like typical Facebook games, Civilization Network
will be free-to-play, although Meier did not reveal any monetization methods, which may or may not include virtual item buys and advertising.
The full game is due to launch next year, preceded by a closed beta coming "soon." Firaxis has already set up a Facebook page
for the game at www.Facebook.com/civnetwork.
Meier, director of creative development at Firaxis, gave more details about the upcoming game: "Civilization Network
will allow you to join together with your friends to create the world’s most powerful, richest, smartest, or just plain coolest civilization."
"You can coordinate your strategy to win great battles, share your technology to jump ahead of your rivals, lobby your family and friends to form your own government and win vital elections, manage and grow your cities to maximize production and happiness, spy on your enemies, and work with your friends to create the great Wonders of the World."