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f13.net  |  f13.net General Forums  |  PC/Console Gaming  |  But is it Fun?  |  Topic: Civilization IV - Firaxis - PC 0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.
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Author Topic: Civilization IV - Firaxis - PC  (Read 12449 times)
Samwise
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on: June 10, 2009, 04:31:37 PM

I was initially not going to write anything about my experiences with Civ 4 for fear of the ensuing nerdrage destroying the known universe, but after talking to a few people about it I think a public service announcement needs to be made.  If you are not already a Civ player, Civ 4 is not For You.  If you are not prepared to spend a lot of time and effort having other people help you have fun with Civ, and you don't want to devote your life to figuring it out on your own, Civ 4 is not For You.

If you are one of those people who does already like Civ because you were inoculated against it at an early age, this review is not For You.  Especially the rating at the end.

As for myself, I like the type of game Civ supposedly is, but I couldn't get into it.  The interface is clunky, and behind it I couldn't see a lot there.  Managing the military is a giant pain in the ass, but if you're not doing that you're just watching your cities level up so you can... I don't know what, I couldn't figure out what the point was to the cities besides building more military units that were a pain in the ass to control and only become more of a pain in the ass once I had a bunch of them for lack of knowing what else to do.  I did manage to make it through an entire round (which I apparently won by running out the clock or something) before uninstalling.

Rating: Avoid.

"Note, i am not saying you're wrong because you're stupid, that would be an ad hominem argument. I am saying you're stupid because you're wrong." - Goumindong
dusematic
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Reply #1 on: June 10, 2009, 04:49:52 PM

I don't think you "like the kind of game Civ supposedly is."  If you did, complaining about a steep learning curve wouldn't be the main thesis of your review.  That's the entire point of Civ:  a relatively deep strategy game.  Even still, Civ is about as intuitive as a game of its kind can be, there's an in-game encyclopedia that can be brought up by right clicking on anything in the game, automatically displaying the entry for that building, unit, etc.  

You "couldn't figure out what the point was to the cities?"  Wtf?  I can't figure out what the point is to this review.  There are multiple paths to victory in Civilization, including cultural, space race, and military.  All of these victory conditions are set by the player himself.  Look, there are a lot of fucking problems with Civ (especially Civ 4) but this review comes off as extremely ignorant even to a casual Civ player such as myself.  I mean why even bother posting a review like this?  Amateur hour.
Samwise
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Reply #2 on: June 10, 2009, 04:51:20 PM

This review is not For You.  Your commentary on it comes off as extremely ignorant.

Edit:  why so serious?
« Last Edit: June 10, 2009, 04:53:23 PM by Samwise »

"Note, i am not saying you're wrong because you're stupid, that would be an ad hominem argument. I am saying you're stupid because you're wrong." - Goumindong
Musashi
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Reply #3 on: June 10, 2009, 05:01:26 PM

Nerdrage ++

AKA Gyoza
dusematic
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Reply #4 on: June 10, 2009, 05:03:06 PM

I played Civ for the first time like 3 years ago.  Does that count as "inoculation?"  My commentary comes off like someone that has played the game a few times and has two brain cells to rub together. Your review reads like it was written by Simple Jack.  (DURRR what do cities do?) Implying that I'm some sort of rabid Civilization fanboy because I'm calling a spade a spade is one way to handle the situation.  








Paelos
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Reply #5 on: June 10, 2009, 05:07:31 PM

Did you play the other ones? If not, yeah it would come off as ridiculous.

I didn't like Civ 4 as much as the other versions because of the meaningless additions. They added religion, but they pussed out at the end and made them all homogenous beyond just picking a "State" religion. No benefits, no downsides, no special items or units. Just pick a faith and move on. I'd rather they just left that part out if they didn't have the balls to actually tailor it to reality.

I can understand what you mean about the military thing. I'm a cultural player and the military conquests usually just get in the way of my building shining cities on a hill. Some people LOOOOOOVE late game rounds where and an entire turn of moves takes 30 minutes. I hate those with an almighty passion. It's simply a style thing. I'm the defensive/builder type that never works in an RTS anywhere, but you can shine in turn-based strategy with the right technology curve.

Civ 4 didn't come off all that different from Civ 3 for me, which made me question it's existence. HOWEVER, and it's a big however, the modding community completely saved this game. Fall from Heaven 2 is widely regarded as one of the most fun mods for the game ever. For one, they fixed my problem with religions by making them very very different and special. Also it has a fantasy base. It's pretty badass overall.

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Samwise
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Reply #6 on: June 10, 2009, 05:21:11 PM

HOWEVER, and it's a big however, the modding community completely saved this game. Fall from Heaven 2 is widely regarded as one of the most fun mods for the game ever. For one, they fixed my problem with religions by making them very very different and special. Also it has a fantasy base. It's pretty badass overall.

I've heard this from a couple of people now, and it was a big part of what inspired me to write something up as a warning to people who don't know about the modding scene, or that it's better if you have someone else spend time showing you the ropes, or whatever.  The impression I'm getting is that people who rave about how awesome Civ is aren't mentioning that it's not awesome out of the box.  It was a rather unpleasant surprise for me since I expected to fire it up and have fun right off the bat.

"Note, i am not saying you're wrong because you're stupid, that would be an ad hominem argument. I am saying you're stupid because you're wrong." - Goumindong
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Reply #7 on: June 10, 2009, 05:23:48 PM

What is it, killing sacred cows week in BIIF?

Thursday: Diablo 2, why it is overrated
Friday: Portal, not all that

 why so serious?

To be more serious, my one real complaint about Civ 4 was that the games so short on the default speed that they stopped feeling like a Civ game, so I usually put it on 'soul grindingly slow' technology progression.

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dusematic
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Reply #8 on: June 10, 2009, 05:24:04 PM

Did you play the other ones? If not, yeah it would come off as ridiculous.

I didn't like Civ 4 as much as the other versions because of the meaningless additions. They added religion, but they pussed out at the end and made them all homogenous beyond just picking a "State" religion. No benefits, no downsides, no special items or units. Just pick a faith and move on. I'd rather they just left that part out if they didn't have the balls to actually tailor it to reality.

I can understand what you mean about the military thing. I'm a cultural player and the military conquests usually just get in the way of my building shining cities on a hill. Some people LOOOOOOVE late game rounds where and an entire turn of moves takes 30 minutes. I hate those with an almighty passion. It's simply a style thing. I'm the defensive/builder type that never works in an RTS anywhere, but you can shine in turn-based strategy with the right technology curve.

Civ 4 didn't come off all that different from Civ 3 for me, which made me question it's existence. HOWEVER, and it's a big however, the modding community completely saved this game. Fall from Heaven 2 is widely regarded as one of the most fun mods for the game ever. For one, they fixed my problem with religions by making them very very different and special. Also it has a fantasy base. It's pretty badass overall.


That's how you criticize Civ 4 in a meaningful way.
schild
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Reply #9 on: June 10, 2009, 05:24:26 PM

I like Civ 4, but comeon. Same category as Diablo 2 and Portal?

Maybe Civ 2 or Alpha Centauri, but 4? Ehhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh, stretch.
Samwise
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Reply #10 on: June 10, 2009, 05:25:30 PM

Thursday: Diablo 2, why it is overrated

If I ever reviewed a Diablo game I'm pretty sure schild would kill me with his mind.

"Note, i am not saying you're wrong because you're stupid, that would be an ad hominem argument. I am saying you're stupid because you're wrong." - Goumindong
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Reply #11 on: June 10, 2009, 05:26:07 PM

I like Civ 4, but comeon. Same category as Diablo 2 and Portal?

Maybe Civ 2 or Alpha Centauri, but 4? Ehhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh, stretch.

I thought comparing Assassin's Creed was much shakier ground really.  tongue Just hyperbole.

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schild
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Reply #12 on: June 10, 2009, 05:29:20 PM

Thursday: Diablo 2, why it is overrated
If I ever reviewed a Diablo game I'm pretty sure schild would kill me with his mind.
Actually, you'd probably die the moment your hand hit the paper. You wouldn't even have to write anything. The pen would jump out of your hand a blast a Bic shaped hole in your frontal lobe.
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Reply #13 on: June 10, 2009, 05:32:32 PM

I can see writing a review like this for an obtuse indie game.  But I really can't see the point of writing a review for a Triple A title like 3 years after it game out that basically says "didn't feel like spending the time to figure this one out, not my cup of tea."  Or at least, I don't see the point of front paging it.  Paelos wrote a better review in the comments section.  I'm not pro-Civ, I'm just anti-useless.
Samwise
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Reply #14 on: June 10, 2009, 05:39:42 PM

I can see writing a review like this for an obtuse indie game.  But I really can't see the point of writing a review for a Triple A title like 3 years after it game out that basically says "didn't feel like spending the time to figure this one out, not my cup of tea."  Or at least, I don't see the point of front paging it.

Every few BiiFs some chucklehead wanders in who didn't read the sticky at the top of the forum and asks "why did you even bother to review this if you're not going to spend a couple of weeks desensitizing yourself to its many torments?"  Here ya go:

Quote
To be blunt, this forum is going to be comprised of one thing: reviews. But not a regular review, but rather thoughts on the first few hours of the game. Old games, new games, demos, freeware, etc. The idea here is for people to put into words why they're going to continue playing a game or why they're done with it.

The point of this particular review, such as it is, is to warn off people like myself who might have been thinking "hey, Civ 4 is on sale.  I've never played Civ but I've heard it's pretty good.  And I like building/strategy/sim games.  Maybe it'll be fun."  If only someone else had written this review first, I'd have spent last night doing something more fun, like laundry, and my life would be better.  So now it's done and anyone else who wastes an evening trying to get into Civ unprepared will at least have been forewarned.

"Note, i am not saying you're wrong because you're stupid, that would be an ad hominem argument. I am saying you're stupid because you're wrong." - Goumindong
Rasix
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Reply #15 on: June 10, 2009, 05:48:35 PM

I can see writing a review like this for an obtuse indie game.  But I really can't see the point of writing a review for a Triple A title like 3 years after it game out that basically says "didn't feel like spending the time to figure this one out, not my cup of tea."  Or at least, I don't see the point of front paging it.  Paelos wrote a better review in the comments section.  I'm not pro-Civ, I'm just anti-useless.

BIIF is open to abuse by the author.  There is no burden on them to completely or even moderately explore the title.  They can play 15 minutes of it, write what they want and give whatever recommendation they want.  Fuck, they don't even have to play the main part of the game.  They could rate Smash Brothers purely on its story mode if they choose.

There is technically no such thing as a bad or useless BIIF, although I've seen plenty of them.  I've also been on the receiving end of getting lambasted for not giving Marvel: Ultimate Alliance the respect due a "classic RPG".  Sam's BIIFs may come across as someone that's extremely bored, irritated, and flippant to the point of carelessness; all while playing something he'd never like.  But it's his BIIF, and he's working well within the framework (I got an A- in "Backhanded Compliments 302: Complex Dickery")

Personally, I'd rather see the Buy, Rent, Avoid rating replaced with something a little more subjective like Liked it, Meh, Hated it. I wouldn't tell anyone how to spend their money on something I really didn't dive into.

edit: Seriously dude, bad week or something?
« Last Edit: June 10, 2009, 05:51:07 PM by Rasix »

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schild
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Reply #16 on: June 10, 2009, 05:50:27 PM

Quote
They can play 15 minutes of it, write what they want and give whatever recommendation they want.  Fuck, they don't even have to play the main part of the game.  They could rate Smash Brothers purely on its story mode if they choose.

That's a bad idea to give people. Anyone who abuses that, I want to remind them that I reserve the right to remove BiiFs.
Rasix
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Reply #17 on: June 10, 2009, 05:51:29 PM

Forza 2, dude. Forza 2.

edit: I'm saying "dude" too much.  I haven't watched Big Lebowski or played Disgaea anything in a while.  I swear.
« Last Edit: June 10, 2009, 05:54:02 PM by Rasix »

-Rasix
schild
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Reply #18 on: June 10, 2009, 05:54:22 PM

Forza 2, dude. Forza 2.
What about it? I just said anybody who abuses it, I'm not sure Azazel abused it there. So, I might be missing your point.
Samwise
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Reply #19 on: June 10, 2009, 05:55:28 PM

edit: Seriously dude, bad week or something?

I have no Internet, so I'm playing through my backlog of rainy day games.  I figured I might at least be able to give my suffering purpose by warning other people away from making the same foolish impulse buys I did.  

Tune in tomorrow for my thoughts on Roller Coaster Tycoon 3.  It might not suck!

"Note, i am not saying you're wrong because you're stupid, that would be an ad hominem argument. I am saying you're stupid because you're wrong." - Goumindong
Rasix
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Reply #20 on: June 10, 2009, 05:58:52 PM

Forza 2, dude. Forza 2.
What about it? I just said anybody who abuses it, I'm not sure Azazel abused it there. So, I might be missing your point.

We would be in disagreement then in regards to certain aspects of my statement.  Not a big deal.  I've beaten that horse enough.

Anyhow... I look forward to Roller Coaster Tycoon 3 BIIF.  Never played any of those games.

edit: Sam, your AC review was the third one for that game.  awesome, for real
« Last Edit: June 10, 2009, 06:01:25 PM by Rasix »

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Reply #21 on: June 10, 2009, 06:02:16 PM

I wonder if nominating games for people to review would lead to interesting results.

In hindsight, Alpha Centauri was the most enjoyable CIV for me.

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Samwise
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Reply #22 on: June 10, 2009, 06:08:19 PM

edit: Sam, your AC review was the third one for that game.  awesome, for real

They failed to convey exactly how wretchedly slow the game wants to you to walk around.  Something needed to be said.

"Note, i am not saying you're wrong because you're stupid, that would be an ad hominem argument. I am saying you're stupid because you're wrong." - Goumindong
Ingmar
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Reply #23 on: June 10, 2009, 06:10:38 PM

edit: Sam, your AC review was the third one for that game.  awesome, for real

They failed to convey exactly how wretchedly slow the game wants to you to walk around.  Something needed to be said.

This gives me an idea for an Eve review...

The Transcendent One: AH... THE ROGUE CONSTRUCT.
Nordom: Sense of closure: imminent.
dusematic
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Reply #24 on: June 10, 2009, 07:00:43 PM

I can see writing a review like this for an obtuse indie game.  But I really can't see the point of writing a review for a Triple A title like 3 years after it game out that basically says "didn't feel like spending the time to figure this one out, not my cup of tea."  Or at least, I don't see the point of front paging it.  Paelos wrote a better review in the comments section.  I'm not pro-Civ, I'm just anti-useless.

BIIF is open to abuse by the author.  There is no burden on them to completely or even moderately explore the title.  They can play 15 minutes of it, write what they want and give whatever recommendation they want.  Fuck, they don't even have to play the main part of the game.  They could rate Smash Brothers purely on its story mode if they choose.

There is technically no such thing as a bad or useless BIIF, although I've seen plenty of them.  I've also been on the receiving end of getting lambasted for not giving Marvel: Ultimate Alliance the respect due a "classic RPG".  Sam's BIIFs may come across as someone that's extremely bored, irritated, and flippant to the point of carelessness; all while playing something he'd never like.  But it's his BIIF, and he's working well within the framework (I got an A- in "Backhanded Compliments 302: Complex Dickery")

Personally, I'd rather see the Buy, Rent, Avoid rating replaced with something a little more subjective like Liked it, Meh, Hated it. I wouldn't tell anyone how to spend their money on something I really didn't dive into.

edit: Seriously dude, bad week or something?

Fair point.
Trippy
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Reply #25 on: June 10, 2009, 09:46:40 PM

As for myself, I like the type of game Civ supposedly is, but I couldn't get into it.  The interface is clunky, and behind it I couldn't see a lot there.
Don't agree with the "Avoid" rating but I do agree the interface is clunky. In fact I would say it's fucking horrific. All of the Civs have been like that and most of his other games too.
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Reply #26 on: June 10, 2009, 09:55:44 PM

My main complaint with Civ IV is you can't "Borg" like you could in Civ III. In Civ III you could assimiliate other cities culturally. In theory you are supposed to be able to do that in Civ IV too but I've never seen it, though I haven't tried the really high difficulties yet. In one case this one city was totally isolated from the rest of its empire (totally surrounded by foreign borders) and down to just a couple of squares of border and it *still* wouldn't switch sides.
Samwise
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Reply #27 on: June 10, 2009, 10:34:16 PM

As for myself, I like the type of game Civ supposedly is, but I couldn't get into it.  The interface is clunky, and behind it I couldn't see a lot there.
Don't agree with the "Avoid" rating but I do agree the interface is clunky. In fact I would say it's fucking horrific. All of the Civs have been like that and most of his other games too.

I actually liked Pirates (the recent one) quite a bit.  I don't remember the interface ever pissing me off.

I think I did borg a couple of neighboring cities in Civ 4, but as far as I could tell it wasn't because of anything in particular I'd done.  They just said "hey, we're on your team now," and I said "um, okay?"

"Note, i am not saying you're wrong because you're stupid, that would be an ad hominem argument. I am saying you're stupid because you're wrong." - Goumindong
Trippy
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Reply #28 on: June 10, 2009, 10:36:15 PM

I wonder what I'm doing wrong then.
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Reply #29 on: June 11, 2009, 12:23:06 AM

I thought that was a very fair review, and agree that the interface is clunky. I think Civ fans like clunky interfaces though. I think I'd hate Civ 4 if it was all streamlined and easy to grasp.

Civ 4 feels very different from Civ 3 to me, simply because I've never won a game of Civ 3 ever. I always DIE, no matter what I do. I have literally launched 20 tanks against one person phalanx and lost. If I go cultural, everybody gangs up and kills me. If I mind my own business, they find me and kill me. I must have gotten a hacked copy or something. Other people can finish a game of Civ 3 (or at least they SAY they can!).

I can win a game of Civ 4, so I like it. ^_^ Plus Fall From Heaven rocks.

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Rendakor
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Reply #30 on: June 11, 2009, 12:25:08 AM

I can't really argue with Sam's review, I'm a long time Civ player so it's Not For Me anyway.

Minor offtopic: Anyone know an easy way to turn off AI civilizations? And remove the time limit? I'd just like to explore and civilize a large, empty world, eventually building a space ship, etc. But there's always some chucklehead AI that builds on the only Stone spawn and I hate going into the World Editor to delete them.

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schild
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Reply #31 on: June 11, 2009, 12:26:22 AM

Quote
I think Civ fans like clunky interfaces though.

No one likes clunky interfaces.

But in the world of Civ and Civ-likes, your options are clunky and clunkier. Most of the gaming industry just tends to ignore the GUI as being important anyway. Particularly in the MMO/RTS/RPG/Strategy sectors. It gets even worse when genres are hybridized.

Edit: Huh. Civ without Civs would be a great mod.
Trippy
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Reply #32 on: June 11, 2009, 01:18:21 AM

Minor offtopic: Anyone know an easy way to turn off AI civilizations? And remove the time limit? I'd just like to explore and civilize a large, empty world, eventually building a space ship, etc. But there's always some chucklehead AI that builds on the only Stone spawn and I hate going into the World Editor to delete them.
Start a custom game, turn off all AI opponents (close their slots), uncheck all the victory conditions except for space race.
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Reply #33 on: June 11, 2009, 01:45:23 AM

Awesome, thanks Trippy. I've always just gone to Play Now! because I liked the more detailed starting options, but this definately works.

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Trippy
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Reply #34 on: June 11, 2009, 01:52:01 AM

Custom games actually give you more options, it's just presented differently.
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