Civilization series goes down the drain
First of all, let me say that I played Civs two through four, and loved them all. Civilization 4 may be my favorite game of all time. Right from the beginning, however, it was clear that Civ 5 was a different kind of game.
First, having to deal with steam. I don't care for steam and was disappointed that I needed it. Then, it was evident from the start that the game had been poorly streamlined. I would even say dumbed-down, rather than streamlined. Civ 4 was a perfect example of what a PC game could do, with so many ways to customize your game and a really complicated set of tools to use in building your civilization. I felt like I could play Civ 5 with a joystick, and like it had been custom made for a less intelligent audience. I was also disappointed by the world builder tools. I had used the Civ 4 worldbuilder extensively, and couldn't get the three separate programs your supposed to use for Civ 5 to do what I wanted. Finally, although this is the least important, I felt like the graphics improvements and the new hex tile world were just unimpressive attempts to make the game fresh without actually having to bother with new ideas.
Maybe if I had never played a previous Civ game, I could have found some value in Civ 5. Since I had, however, I feel like this game was a colossal waste of my time and money. Sid, I want my 50 bucks back.