Civilization V: Brave New World Preview - Shaka Returns

Joshua Vanderwall | 12 Apr 2013 12:00
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The new Culture victory option was created to be more active than the current path. The new Culture victory is based on the idea of Tourism which reflects your cultural influence around the world. You create Tourism with Great Works, well known paintings, songs, and pieces of literature, like Starry Night or Macbeth, created by the unique Great Musicians, Writers, and Artists responsible for the work. Your Culture buildings, like Museums and Opera Houses, will act as the home for these Great Works, so you'll need to make sure you've always got the space to accommodate new works to bolster your Tourism.

If you're looking to win with the new Culture victory, your goal will be to produce more Tourism than each other civilization's collected Culture. If you wait too long to get started, however, this will prove a serious challenge, as the other civs will have centuries worth of Culture that you'll have to catch up to, so it's best to start early with your Tourism. A delightful nod in this system is the Indiana Jones-esque Archeologist unit, available once you have a University. The game will track every battle that happens and turn certain locations into dig sites, such as a battle from a war with the Assyrians in 480BC, which your Archeologist can dig up and turn into an Artifact, another source of Tourism. If you've got a sufficiently long memory, you might even remember the specific battle that you're digging up later in the game.

If you don't make the grade in Diplomacy or Culture, of course, late game military dominance is going to be your friend. To this end, Brave New World introduces a new late game upgrade to the Paratroopers in the form of the XCOM unit. This crossover unit allows you to air drop it practically anywhere on the map, unlike the more limited Paratroopers, and they're even sporting the quintessential weapon of advanced XCOM tech; Plasma Rifles. This addition isn't going to change much of the game, given how late it comes along, but the developers have great expectations for what the modding community might be able to do with it. At the very least I'm imagining Barbarian encampments churning out Sectoids, Mutons, and Ethereals, but I'm confident that the dedicated modders out there will do so much more than I can even conceive.

With the addition of international Trade Routes, a new path for Culture victories, and the ability to trade for votes to win a Diplomatic victory, Brave New World might just change the way you play Civ V. Given the detailed complexity of the new systems, however, you can rest assured that you'll still be playing the Civilization you know and love.

Sid Meier's Civilization V: Brave New World will be available on July 9th in North America, and July 12th internationally.

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