Pixel Perfect

Published on July 2nd, 2012 | by Matt

Civ V: Gods and Kings: Just one more Turn!

Matt explains what makes Civ V: Gods and Kings even more addicting than the original game!

I had told myself I would only play for 30 more minutes. I needed to get up for work tomorrow so 30 minutes should give me plenty of time to get ready for bed and wake up feeling refreshed.

My Korean civilization had been expanding its borders. Recently I had founded a religion, which, in a move I thought was more witty than it actually was, I had christened “Star Craft.” Korea would get a technology boost for spreading Star Craft to other regions. Just a few more turns and I would have enough research for a new technology. Only a few more clicks and my missionaries would get to their destinations. Just a bit longer and my spy would uncover what sort of evil plans the traitorous Spanish had to attack me.

The secret is in the science!

The Mighty Korean Empire, dutifully serving Star Craft for centuries.

The next thing I knew it was 2:30 in the morning and I was kicking myself. Again.

Civilization V: Gods and Kings is an expansion for Civilization V, the turn based strategy game from Firaxis and sequel to the long-running Civilization series by Sid Meier. While the game was released in 2010 this is the first major update to it other than small DLC packs that contained extra factions. The expansion reworks a lot of elements in the traditional Civ V experience. While it’s not quite a revolution, the basic game remains mostly the same, it provides an excellent excuse to dive back into the ridiculously addicting game play the original game had.

The main draw of the game is the constant mental whirlpool of “just one more turn…” that can drag you down for hours. My experience a few nights ago was not the first time this had happened, and probably won’t be the last. Gods and Kings provides more reasons to keep playing, as well as some balancing tweaks to make the original experience even more satisfying. Nine new factions are playable, old ones have been adjusted, new units have been added, and a few things have been removed.

The primary new aspect to Gods and Kings is in the title. The ability to found a pantheon and eventually a religion using prophets, missionaries, and inquisitors has returned to the Civ franchise. By generating the resource “Faith” you can purchase a pantheon, eventually founding a religion with a Great Prophet, and then improving upon the beliefs of the religion from there. Religions give you bonuses that you pick; some give you money, some extra production, some let you buy buildings or units with Faith. Although you can choose from real world religions, the name is meaningless, all the bonuses are chosen by you. For added fun you can name the religion what you want (say, Star Craft, if you’re as unoriginal as me.)

Isabella is a liar

Sure she’s friendly now, after trying to attack us five times.

Gods and Kings also includes espionage. After a certain point a spy is generated, which can be sent to other cities to do your bidding. Besides telling you what things are going on in your enemy’s (or ally’s) region, the spy can also steal tech from other factions. In city states you can rig elections in your favor, or even plan a coup. Placing a spy in your own territory will help capture or kill enemy spies, but beware, as other civs can do the same to you. Your spies can also uncover other factions’ troop movements, allowing you to prepare or warn the civ they’re plotting against. The spies are not an on-screen unit anymore, they’ve been streamlined into menus which makes the whole process easier and less annoying.

Besides the big changes Gods and Kings also reworks a lot of the vanilla game. Aside from adding some new units and removing some old ones, it also changes the tech tree that determine when these units can be spawned. Due to some new balances regarding navies in the game, factions such as the English or Ottomans, once the weakest civs, are now much stronger than they used to be. Extra wonders and buildings have been added as well.

In the NAVY

Naval combat is a much more viable option in Gods and Kings.

What this all means for us is an overall more balanced game. It’s not something anyone will immediately notice while playing, but it just makes Gods and Kings superior to the original game while keeping the same elements that made it so addicting. The new addition of the Steam Workshop means they’ll be no short of mods and user created levels to look forward to as well.

And addicting is the key word. Gods and Kings gives you more of a reason to keep clicking “next turn” and generally just improves the overall Civ V experience.

But be warned: Pixel Legends takes no responsibility for time lost due to excessive Civ V: God’s and Kings play.

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About the Author

Matt started Pixel Legends originally to cover E3 2011. Aside from video games Matt also enjoys books, wasting time on the internet, and being from England. He doesn’t have a British accent.

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