Video Games

Sid Meier?s Civilization: Beyond Earth – A New Gameplay on an Alien Planet

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Firaxis games is redefining the Civilization series with their newest addition ? Beyond Earth. After receiving positive reception at the E3 convention, 2K games just announced that Beyond Earth will be released on October 24, 2014. To clear things up, the game is set about 200 years from now wherein humans will attempt to settle on new planets; so the game in not about the future of Earth itself but more about the future of humanity ?beyond earth?.

With just a few months ahead, a lot of questions are arising in the minds of all Civ fans out there so let?s talk about the most fundamental issues in preparation for our venture to outer space.

In the previous games, you?ll have to choose civilizations from Earth?s history to represent your people. Will Gandhi and the others still be available in Beyond Earth?

The answer is no. When colonizing a new planet, you?ll have to make your own civilization. At the start of the game, you will be choosing a sponsor to fund your expedition into space. You will also be picking what kind of ship to take you to the new planet, what cargo will you take and what kind of people will your colonists be to start off your adventure. These early game choices will create your own custom civilization that will affect your strategies and gameplay later in the game.

Are there alien life forms on the new planet?

Yes. Just like the barbarian tribes and city-states of Civ V, the aliens will be like a third party player in Beyond Earth. But unlike the barbarians who are more of a nuisance in late-game, the aliens can turn into a serious threat or a powerful ally depending on your interactions with them throughout the game.

What happens to technology in this futuristic set-up?

Instead of the linear tech tree in the previous Civs, Beyond Earth will have what the developers call a ?Tech Web?. Modern day technology will still remain in Beyond Earth which will be the foundations of the tech web, but sci-fi or alien tech will eventually sprout from them.

Civ Tech Web



What are the victory conditions in Beyond Earth?

Before anything else, first let me explain about the ?Affinity? system. This system is more like philosophies for players regarding ?how they would interact with the alien planet and alien life. We have the Harmony affinity which aims to blend in with the alien world, we have Supremacy which focuses on machinery and cybernetics where humans will later become ?robots? themselves, and finally we have the Purity affinity where humans aim to remain ?human? as much as possible. So depending on the affinity you believe in, your choice will pave the way to which victory condition will be possible. The Harmony affinity for example, can win by discovering in late-game that the planet is sentient (in homage to Sid Meier?s Alpha Centauri) then be able to communicate with it ? redefining how humans view the planet and life itself.


Anything else that we would want to know about?

As you may have noticed, the custom civilization you make at the start will be different each time you start a new game. This applies to AI players as well. In the previous Civs, it?s easy to expect the characteristics of the AI based on who they chose to represent, whether it?s Gandhi or Montezuma for example. In Beyond Earth, you?ll have to constantly develop strategies on how to interact with these indefinite AIs as you can?t expect them to be the same every time you play a game.

Another point to take note of is the new Orbital Layer in the game. Aside from the land terrain you?ll have to develop, you?ll also need to set up satellites to help you in game. These can be military, economic or scientific satellites to help you in your conquest.

Some of you may think that that the game is too farfetched or too ?sci-fi? but the developers claim that the game attempts to remain plausible or realistic as possible. With all these new concepts, veteran players of the Civ series may find this very challenging and become ?beginners? once again.

So there you have it folks. Thank you for your time and keep an eye out for TheBitbag for more future updates.


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