Sid Meier’s Civilization® VI - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Alice O'Connor)

Summer is certainly upon us, and Civilization VI [official site] is celebrating this joyous season by encouraging you to stay indoors for just one more turn. Civ 6 launched its ‘Summer 2017 Update’ last night, packed full of balance changes, AI improvements, and bug fixes. As requested, it also added a ‘Restart’ button to regenerate a map and start over, and the ability to save game setup configurations for future games is in too.

If you want to pay money, a new DLC pack is out, adding the Nubian civilisation led by the queen Amanitore. The base game is on sale now and all. (more…)

Sid Meier’s Civilization® VI

Nubia joins Civilization 6's cast today, along with a scenario which pits the ancient Nile civilization against its neighbor to the north, Egypt. That DLC will set you back five bucks (or £4.50) if you don't have the Deluxe Edition, and will appeal to fans of slinging missiles: Nubia is graced with +50% Production toward ranged units, which also earn promotions at double the normal rate, and the Pitati Archer, a stronger, faster (harder and better) unit to replace the normal archer.

The complete civ description is available on the DLC's Steam page. For those uninterested in high-quality ancient arrows, there's more news: Nubia's release joins a patch that adds, finally, a restart button which regenerates the map, and a function that saves game configs so they can be reused. At least one mod can be unchecked now.

The update also brings a bunch of balance changes, such as a +10 price increase for archers (Nubia-related inflation?) and a 25 percent decrease to the cost for spies, as well as UI and AI tweaks. There might be another mod or two to untick, especially if the trade route chooser has actually improved. It now auto selects the last completed route, which is a start.

The full patch notes are on Steam. Though its base price hasn't yet dropped from $60, Civ 6 is currently 33% off.

Sid Meier’s Civilization® VI - Hinkle2K

The Summer 2017 update for Civilization VI is available now for PC players and coming soon for Mac and Linux. There’s one new feature, in particular, that a number of you have been asking for: A restart button to regenerate the map using your current game settings, and the ability to save game configuration settings for future games. In addition, there are balance changes to District costs, some civ-specific adjustments, and a warning when your cities can bombard nearby enemy units.

A complete list of the changes is below:

[NEW]

Nubia
  • Civ Unique Ability: +50% Production toward Ranged units. All Ranged units earn promotions 50% faster. Mines over strategic resources are +1 Production. Mines over bonus and luxury resources are +2 Gold.
  • Queen Amanitore Unique Ability: Kandake of Meroë - +20% Production on all districts rising to +40% if the city contains a Nubian Pyramid adjacent to the City Center.
  • Pitati Archer: Replaces the Archer. Stronger than the Archer with +1 Movement.
  • Nubian Pyramid: Improvement. +1 Faith. Receives additional yields from adjacent districts. +1 Food if adjacent to a city center. For all other districts that award adjacency bonuses: +1 of the appropriate yield if that district is adjacent. Desert, Desert Hills, Floodplains.
    Jebel Barkal Wonder
  • Unlocked at Iron Working. Awards 2 free Iron and +4 Faith to Cities within 6 tiles.
    ‘Gifts of the Nile’ Scenario
    The Nile River is the life-blood of not one ancient civilization, but two: Egypt and Nubia. Although these neighbors and trade partners shared a common river valley and supreme deity (Amun) they were often in direct competition if not outright war. In this head-to-head competitive scenario, you will take the role of one of these powers to see who can truly become the most worthy disciple of the great god Amun by being the first player to create 7 Temples in his honor.
  • Added Restart button to regenerate the map
  • Added the saving of game setup configurations to reuse when starting future games

    http://store.steampowered.com/app/645400

    WATCH our First Look video on Nubia below:
    https://youtu.be/lmYH3G0DIUQ
    SUBSCRIBE to Civilization on YouTube ➜ http://2kgam.es/CivilizationYT
[GENERAL BALANCE CHANGES]
  • Reduced the cost of the Aqueduct by 30%, and Sewers by 50%
  • Reduced cost of all other districts by 10%
  • Increased the discount for districts you have less of from 25% to 40%
    Increased costs of district buildings by 10% (except Aerodrome buildings), and increased per settler cost bump by 50%
  • Reduced cost of all spies by 25%
  • The Hanging Gardens now provides +2 Housing in city it is built
  • Walls now provide Tourism, and do not have Maintenance
  • Battering Ram and Siege Tower now upgrade to the Medic support unit, and no longer are functional against a city with Urban Defenses
  • Gave St George an additional Charge
  • Updated Monarchy's Medieval Wall bonus to: "+50% Production toward defensive buildings. +1 Housing for each level of wall."
  • Proselytizer Apostle Promotion only evicts 75% of existing pressure of other religions, not 100%.
  • Press Gangs will now unlock with Exploration and Native Conquest with Colonialism.
  • Increased Anti-Air strength values by 5 across the board. Increased Destroyer AA strength to match other units of the same era.
  • Balance Change to Archer (cost +10) and Maryannu Chariot Archer (cost -20, combat +2, ranged strength +2)
  • Increased cost to repair city outer defenses
  • Moved “Urban Defenses” from Civil Engineering to Steel
[CIV & LEADER SPECIFIC BALANCE CHANGES]
    Norway
  • Thunderbolt of the North gains +50% production of naval melee units
  • Stave Church gains +1 Production for all Coastal resources in the city

    Spain
  • Treasure Fleet civ ability has its gold for intercontinental trade boosted from +4 to +6.
  • Mission: increase from +1 Science to +2 Science if next to a Campus.

  • Scythia’s heal down from 50 to 30.
  • Kongo: 50% more Great People points rather than double.
  • Greece: Award an envoy whenever they complete an Acropolis.
  • France: Catherine’s Flying Squadron now awards a free Spy when the extra capacity is earned at Castles. All spies start as Agents with a free promotion.
[MAP GENERATION]
  • Aluminum may now appear on Plains
  • Increased Lake generation
  • Updated Bonus and Strategic Sea resource generation
  • Fixed river generation on Inland Sea maps
[UI ENHANCEMENTS]
  • Combat Preview UI has received multiple improvements
  • The Civilopedia now shows the number of spies/envoys granted by a civic
  • Multi-turn unit movement paths shown when unit reselected
  • Add Relationships tab to city state Intel Reports which displays that city state's at war status with other civs and city states
  • A popup box is now used to modify deal item values
  • Added leader dialog for Gifts and Demands
  • Scenarios no longer display extraneous UI screens
  • Reports now displays great works, adjacency, and districts information
  • Trade Route chooser automatically selects previously completed trade route
  • Additional improvements to the Trade Route chooser
  • Added a turn blocker notification when city ranged attack is available
  • Tech and Civic Boosts now additionally appear in the notification panel above the turn advancer.
  • A Toggle Strategic View keybinding has been added
[DIPLOMACY ENHANCEMENTS]
  • Added tooltips explaining why you can or cannot declare each kind of war or undertake another diplomatic action.
  • “Are you sure you want to denounce?” confirmation added
  • Liberation changes:
    - Liberating cities can now occur even if you got the city in a deal (peace deals are the most common case of this).
    - A case where the Persian player didn't see "(cede)" or "(return)" besides cities on the peace deal screen has been fixed.
    - When you liberate a city-state your military units are only kicked back from the first ring of hexes around the city; you aren't ejected from their territory entirely.
[AI TUNING]
  • Improved AI ability to move great works around to get theming
  • AI will now better handle air attacks
    - Bombers will attack Districts, Improvements, and then Units in that preference
    - Fighters will prefer to attack other air units
  • Improved desire to pillage cities
  • Improved city planning with regard to adjacency bonuses
  • During city attacks, concentrate unit attacks on more threatening units rather than spreading out
  • Fixed a bug that resulted in the AI overestimating the value of demand tribute
  • Adjust AI acceptance of embassies to be a bit more like what they already do for delegations
  • Specifically, they probably will reject it if they're unfriendly, will accept at neutral unless they have any other reason against it (close balance) and will generally accept it at friendly unless they have a strong reason against.
  • In evaluating deals, the AI will mark elements that are unacceptable at any price, and expose that to the player
  • Improve ability to utilize city-states, beyond just suzerainty
  • As a player approaches victory, AI will become less friendly and more aggressive
[MULTIPLAYER]
  • Improved stability after receiving a multiplayer join error
  • Fixed unnecessary host migration when exiting a LAN game
  • Fixed an occasional hang during wars in dynamic turn mode
  • Miscellaneous UI fixes and stability improvements
[BUG FIXES]
  • Fixed an issue where plot tooltips would show when we didn’t want them to
  • Fixed multiple issues with Air combat
  • City Banners were not reacting to population changed events
  • Barbarian camp art will now update as the game progresses into later eras
  • Fixed an issue where pillaged improvements lost their pantheon bonuses forever
  • District repair costs now computed properly based on both game speed and start era. Will always be 25% of the cost of creating a new district of that type.
  • Correct Alexander’s “To the World’s End” healing ability so it only triggers if the city has a COMPLETED wonder in it.
  • Wonders should always be repairable after they have been hit by a nuclear blast
  • Fixed issues with Reports screen totals not adding correctly
  • Additional bug fixes.
[MISC]
  • Added new visualization for desert mountains

Follow the conversation on social media by using the hashtag #OneMoreTurn, and be sure to follow the Civilization franchise on social media to keep up to date with the latest news and information on Sid Meier’s Civilization VI.

         
Sid Meier’s Civilization® VI - Hinkle2K

Amanitore, a Nubian Kandake (queen), was one of the last great builders within the Kushitic Kingdom of Meroë. She ruled an area between the Nile and Atbara rivers.

https://youtu.be/lmYH3G0DIUQ

Many Kandake are described as warrior queens who led forces into battle, but references to Amanitore also point to an unprecedented time of growth through building.  The sheer number of structures completed during her reign – the middle part of the first century – suggest this was a very prosperous time for the kingdom.

Amanitore was involved in restoring the large temple for Amun at Meroë and the Amun temple at Napata after it was destroyed by the Romans. Water retention reservoirs were erected at Meroë during her reign. Amun temples at Naqa and Amara were also built at this time.

 
UNIQUE UNIT: Pítati
Nubian warriors were widely respected as master archers (Pítati). In fact, the ancient Egyptian term for Nubia was “Ta-Seti,” which meant “Land of the Bow.” The Pítati were even used as mercenaries by neighboring kingdoms. The first recorded use of Nubian Pítati was by Weni of the Sixth Dynasty of Egypt during the Old Kingdom of Egypt, about 2300 BC. The Pítati replaces the Ancient Era Archer for Nubia. It is stronger and faster than the ancient Archer and upgrades to Crossbowman.


UNIQUE IMPROVEMENT: Nubian Pyramid
More than 200 Nubian Pyramids were built between 300 B.C. and A.D. 350. The Nubian Pyramid differs greatly from neighboring Egyptian edifices in that they are typically narrower at the base (measuring 26 feet, at most) and rise at a steeper angle (roughly 70 degrees) rising approximately 20-98 feet in height. An Egyptian Pyramid, by comparison, had foundations at least five times larger at 40-50 degree angles.

A Nubian Pyramid can be built on Desert, Desert Hills or in Floodplains regions. They provide Faith, as well as additional yields based on the adjacent District, or Food for the City Center.


SCENARIO: “The Gift of the Nile”
Nubia lies in modern-day Sudan, south of Egypt. So, for the new “Gifts of the Nile” Scenario, you lead either Nubia or Egypt to see who will control the Nile River. The winner is the first civilization to complete seven Temples dedicated to Amun in this 125-turn scenario.

Follow the conversation on social media by using the hashtag #OneMoreTurn, and be sure to follow the Civilization franchise on social media to keep up to date with the latest news and information on Sid Meier’s Civilization VI.

         
Sid Meier’s Civilization® VI - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Oliver Milne)

casablanca

RPS Suggests is where we put forward our own ideas for new games, or changes to old games, or anything else. Think of it like backseat driving for the games industry.>

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a strategy game possessed of turns, tiles, and pretensions of grandeur, must be in want of an espionage system. It is a truth less often acknowledged, that said espionage systems universally suck. In this edition of RPS Suggests, I d like to humbly describe how to completely fix this forever.

(more…)

Europa Universalis IV - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Oliver Milne)

Big, slow, sweeping strategy games expose their rules in a way no other game does. Call of Duty doesn t have floating numbers above enemy heads, telling you their movement speed, for example. But in most 4X and grand strategy games, there is no attempt to hide exactly how everything works: the stats, their interactions, are all laid out and plain to see. Yet these games are utterly dependent on their ability to evoke a sense of place, scale, and history they have to be much more than just a fancy chessboard, they have to feel alive, or they re just not much fun. How can these games survive and thrive under such conflicting pressures? I spoke to three of the world s top strategy game designers, from Firaxis, Paradox and Amplitude, to find out. … [visit site to read more]

Left 4 Dead 2 - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Brendan Caldwell)

The Steam summer sale is in full blaze. For a while it even blazed so hot that the servers went on fire and all the price stickers peeled off the games. Either that or the store just got swamped with cheapskates looking for the best bargains. Cheapskates like you! Well, don t worry. We ve rounded up some recommendations – both general tips and some newly added staff choices.

Here are the things you should consider owning in your endless consumeristic lust for a happiness which always seems beyond reach. You’re welcome.

… [visit site to read more]

Left 4 Dead 2 - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Brendan Caldwell)

The Steam summer sale is in full blaze. For a while it even blazed so hot that the servers went on fire and all the price stickers peeled off the games. Either that or the store just got swamped with cheapskates looking for the best bargains. Cheapskates like you! Well, don t worry. We ve rounded up some recommendations – both general tips and some specific staff choices.

Here are the things you should consider owning in your endless consumeristic lust for a happiness which always seems beyond reach. You’re welcome.

… [visit site to read more]

Sid Meier’s Civilization® VI

The Civilization series' endless modability is one of the reasons many of us are still playing it today. In a game all about replayability, being able to inject some user made variety into your world-dominating conquests can keep the game feeling fresh after hundreds of hours. From simple gameplay changes to total conversions, the best Civ mods around are truly things to behold.

And then there's the other guys. While some players mod in snubbed historical figures or their favorite videogame characters as new playable leaders and nations, other modders take a different route. We dove deep into the Steam Workshops for both Civ 5 and Civ 6—the latter of which only has one representative on this list as official modding tools and Workshop support just arrived at the end of February—and found the weirdest custom civs players have inexplicably decided need to be in the game. 

Guy Fieri of Flavortown

Steam workshop page

The spikey-haired host of the television show Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives gets to rule his very own country. Guy Fieri tops this list because it's a mod that goes all out in its unrelenting lunacy. It has custom graphics and text all throughout, and even has a synopsis and history at least five paragraphs long in the civilopedia. It also shouldn't be a surprise that all his unique abilities and buildings center around boosting both culture and food.

Antarctica 

Steam Workshop page

An Antarctica civ doesn't sound so crazy on the surface, but modder Methodialexis decided to take it in a very strange direction. A continent with essentially no human life, the leader is instead a "genetically enhanced Penguin named Pengu that is not only smarter than humans by a long shot, but has gained mastery over human mind control, and is seeking world domination." All of its Workers are replaced with human slaves, and the Granary is replaced with a 'Human Farm', because if you are going to make a civ of penguins why not really lean into the absurdity of it? 

I AM A MOD (Kanye Civilization)

Steam Workshop page

Not going to lie, half the reason this is on the list is because the name is just brilliant. The other half is because how on earth has Kanye West ended up as a civ mod? The civ also comes with Beyonce as a Great Musician, a Kim Kardashian unit, and a religion called Kanyeism. I also love that according to the Steam page, his first city is just 'Kanye', while the second is the also brilliant name of 'Westville'.  

KORAIL - KTX-Mini

Steam Workshop page

This may be my favorite of the entire list, and I have no idea why. Someone, for some utterly incomprehensible reason, has turned the Korean national railroad company into a playable civ. As you might expect, the entire mod is in Korean, but I'm not sure I'd really understand what was going on even if it was in English. Also as you might expect, KORAIL doesn't have to pay maintenance on Roads or Railroads and has improved Great Engineers.

Empire of Microsoft

Steam Workshop page

Lead, of course, by Bill Gates, the Empire of Microsoft is pretty much a reskin of the American civ with some small differences. The biggest being they generate Great Scientists and Generals faster, for which the rationale on the Workshop page is "so that Microsoft can invade other companies and recreate their products with their scientists faster I guess…" Bombers become 'Flight Simulators' and Walls become 'Windows Vista Defenders', which is sure to scare opponents away. 

Shia Labeouf

Steam Workshop page

Our only representative from Civ 6 on this list, Shia Labeouf is an alternate leader for the American civ. I was pretty disappointed to see how slim Civ 6's Workshop page still is, but I suppose Civ 5 is still the more-played game and has a longer lineage of weird mods to pull from. Shia's ability is 'Just Do It', which gives Builders more charges and improves your Theater Squares. 

John Madden's Moonbase Alpha

Steam Workshop page

It was upon finding this civ that I knew my hunt was not in vain. John Madden's Moonbase Alpha is a custom civ built around the incredible videos spurred by free-to-play game Moonbase Alpha's text-to-speech feature—for those out of the loop, this is essential viewing. John Madden leads the lunar-themed civ, which is complete with its own 'Singing Astronauts' instead of Great Musicians, and the unique ability 'Aeiou'. This mod is a gift.  

Boss Key Productions

Steam Workshop page

Why someone would want to play Civ 5 by controlling a nation themed after Lawbreakers developer Boss Key Productions wasn't entirely clear to me, but it was the story behind this mod that earned it a spot onto the list. Apparently modder Angeflo made it as part of their portfolio while applying for an Engineering Intern position at the studio back in 2015. The real kicker: four days after posting it Angeflo commented on the Workshop page saying he had been turned down, and the mod was never updated again. Pour one out for Angeflo, but at least now we can all play Civ as Cliffy B. 

Patrick Bateman's Civilization 

Steam Workshop page

"We salute you with a finger pointed squarely at the two-o'clock position," the intro for the great nation of 'Pierce & Pierce Mergers and Acquisitions' begins. A civ based on Christian Bale's character in the movie American Psycho is hardly the strangest one here, but I'm left wondering all the same how someone was struck with the idea to do this. Still, their attention to detail is admirable, with lines from the movie scattered throughout trade deals and dialogue options.  

Pootopia

Steam Workshop page

The only civ on this list with a content warning on the Workshop page, saying "DO NOT install this mod if you are likely to be offended. This mod contains mild bad language, sexual references and toilet humour." Basically, it's bunch of poo jokes, with the poo emoji itself as the symbol of the civ. It also has bonuses built around cows and sheep, and a 'Sewage Plant' that increases food and culture. I'm not sure why anyone would want to spend the duration of a civ game playing as poo, but to each their own. 

MUGEN

Steam Workshop page

Right up there with KORAIL in terms of confusing theme choices, someone went ahead and made a civ based on the fighting game engine MUGEN. The leader of the civ is developer Elecbyte, and all of its unique units and abilities are fighting game themes with a focus on military bonuses. Modder nomercyjeffc has at least a dozen other custom civs ranging from Minecraft to Markiplier, so I guess they just threw topics at a wall to see what stuck.  

Arnold Schwarzenegger Civilization

Steam Workshop page

This civ is essntially a bad montage of any and every movie Schwarzenegger has been in, pulling quotes and images from Conan, Mr. Freeze, Total Recall, and lots more. Arnold Schwarzenegger leads the land of Schwarzeneggeria, a predictably barbarous country that gets bonuses for pillaging and Great Generals. Similar to the Guy Fieri mod, just a little bit too much work has gone into making this civ, which may be why it still has nearly 10,000 subscribers three years after releasing. 

Sid Meier's Civilization® V - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Adam Smith)

Jon Shafer was 21 years old when he became lead designer of Civilization V. Now working at Paradox on an unannounced project and on his own historical strategy game At The Gates in his spare time, he says he’s learning from the likes of Spelunky along with the more obvious strategic influences. We spoke about how the second half of every Civ sucks, the part the series played in his life, the perils of boredom in strategy design, how much we love maps, and what the future holds for both Shafer and Paradox.

I began by asking how he ended up sitting at the Paradox Convention, in Stockholm, the city that has now been his home for two weeks: “It’s quite a long story, actually.”

That story begins in Denver, around 2003.

… [visit site to read more]

...

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