Civilization Revolution is a fun and highly addicting game which will appeal to both new comers and veterans alike.
Civilization Revolution however has changed my opinion of Civ games. This is the newest addition to the series which premieres on the next generation of consoles (360, Ps3 and Wii) as well as the DS. And it certainly has a lot to offer.
Gameplay - 9/10
Gameplay in Civ Revolution has definitely changed since Civ IV. The gameplay is now more streamlined and ensures that the game is in fact much more easier for new comers to just pick up and immediately become immersed in. Long time veterans of the series may be disappointed in some of the cut backs that have been made e.g. lack of certain resources, shorter play time, less active players per match etc. However what the game does offer provides an enjoyable experience.
Players can assume the role of one of many leaders from Gengis Khan to Caesar to Abraham Lincoln. The leader you choose dictates the nation you play as and it is up to you to develop your civilization in any way that you see fit. Will you declare peace with your rival civs, or crush them into the ground? Will you share technologies and Intel or keep your knowledge to yourself? Will you be peaceful, scientific or a warmonger? What kind of government will you have? What kind of religion will you have?
These are just some of the decisions that await you through the course of the game, there are a number of ways of winning including destroying your rival civs in a domination victory, being the first civ to reach space and colonise a distant world in a space race victory, accumulating 20,000 gold pieces and constructing a World Bank for an economic victory or constructing several wonders of the world or attracting 20 great people from history to your civ for a cultural victory.
One neat feature is that some elements of micro management have been simplified, for example, workers will now automatically develop surrounding squares, whereas before you would need to order them around manually. You can however adjust what they are doing through the city management screen, instructing them to focus on certain resources or to balance their efforts. In addition, the espionage system has been improved, with spies now able to infiltrate a city and sabotage production or defensive units, or even abduct a great person and bring them back to your own city. These spies add humour to the game and are fun to produce and use, they can be produced quite early on which makes them a valuable asset to your civ.
Controls - 8/10
Controls in Civ Revolution feel so intuitive and responsive, menus can be easily navigated at the touch of a button and micro managing your civ is as easy as it ever was with a mouse. There are some occasions where you may find the controls a little awkward, but these are rare and for the most part the control scheme rarely falters. It is worth mentioning that adapting a PC game for a console is not an easy feat, and one which so many games have messed up. But not Civ Revolution;
Controls are simple; you move your cursor using the right analog stick and the face buttons to issue commands and select units. Once a unit is selected, the face buttons can then be used to issue an order such as to fortify a position (X button) or to hold position for one turn (B button) etc. The D-Pad allows for cycling between units or additionally the left and right bumpers can be used, the left bumper can also be used to bring up the city menu screen, at which point the left and right bumper buttons can be used to cycle through cities.
Visuals (Graphics) - 9/10
Visuals have been vastly improved and specifically tailored to the hardware of the next gen consoles. Units are now more realistic, cities look impressive as they develop, each additional building making your city look simply stunning. Visuals in turn are colourful, sharp and well animated, visuals such as these make the game all the more easier on the eye and a pleasure to play over protracted periods. Advisor's are both helpful (they will immediately tell you if something is wrong or make a suggestion that usually does help to progress the game) and amusing in the way they will pop up and barge each other out of the way, or they way in which they react to certain decisions. Also amusing are the various avatars that represent the various civs or the third party barbarian clan. It goes without saying that the avatars in Civ Revolution are far more larger then life then in previous installments.
As you progress and gain more cities and expand, visuals can however sometimes suffer in the form of things becoming too cluttered on screen, this can sometimes make keeping track of things slightly more difficult, however with the intuitive menu options, this is a minor problem.
Audio - 9/10
As with previous installments in the series, the music in Civ Revolution is of an excellent standard and really does give the game an epic/ movie feel.
Re-playability - 9/10
Numerous leaders to use commanding numerous civs each with their own unique bonuses. Not to mention the endless possible ways to play through a game and the addition of online multiplayer ensures that this game has a seriously high re-playability factor.
Conclusion - I would highly recommend this game to both veterans and fans of the series, while it may not appeal to everyone, this game does have a lot of potential and a lot of depth. Any Civilization game is a game which if done poorly could really suck the fun out of the series, this game fortunately doesn't fail in that area. Hopefully It will be the first of many installments of the series to grace the next gen consoles. A must buy!!