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Civilization: Beyond Earth

First Contact In Civilization: Beyond Earth

Civilization: Beyond Earth takes the series to a new world with its own dangers and opportunities. Starting out a civilization is hard enough, but doing it on truly foreign soil is another matter.

I'm no Civ expert, but by Firaxis' own design, the beginning turns of Beyond Earth are a little harder than usual. Part of the reason for this is the indigenous life. I spent many turns repelling waves of beetles near my home city. Despite this early antagonism with the planet's inhabitants, it won't always be like this. Some creatures will treat you with indifference unless you attack them, or only turn on you if you're too near their nest or some other faction riles them up.

Your attitude towards the indigenous life will likely be shaped by any affinity you align your faction with as you chart a course around the game's Tech Web (as opposed to the old Tech Tree). However, even if you choose to pick up some bonuses aligned with one of the game's three affinities (Harmony, Supremacy, or Purity), the Web is flexible enough – as are the Victory conditions – that you don't have to hem yourself in with a particular affinity.

Whether you choose to tame the planet or live in harmony with it, making use of the game's new orbital layer is a must. Satellites can naturally be used for military purposes against your enemies, but in terms of your relationship with the planet itself, they can be used to destroy dangerous green miasma gas fissures that damage your units if you end your turn on them, control the weather, help your crops, and more.

I didn't get very far with my civilization before the demo ended; spending many of my turns focused on clearing the indigenous life from my borders (go on, judge me). I think I just realized which affinity I am...

For more on the game, take a look at our previous preview, as well as the franchise's new website.

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  • This all sounds pretty neato. Now, if it will let me recreate Starship Troopers, than I am sold. (I say that, but I am sold already).

  • I can't wait to get my hands on this game. Civ 5 is such an amazing game and I love playing it, even though I'm quite terrible at it.

  • I kind of wish GI would have sent someone to get a first impression of this who had Civ5 experience. Matthew treats the indigenous life like it's a new mechanic (at least that's how it comes across) when it sounds like they're a combination of City States and Barbarians (rampaging). I don't understand some of the new mechanics yet - I just know I'm anticipating this game and I can't help but to feel that someone familiar with the franchise would have gotten more out of this demo. No offense to Matthew Kato personally, just my opinion.
  • This looks pretty cool.

  • ...O.o sooooo much hype.

  • Wonder how much input Sid has with these new games.
  • I cannot wait. I have played the last three Civilization games and regard them as masterpieces, and I hope that Civilization: Beyond Earth follows in their footsteps.

  • So basically they are remaking Alpha Centaurui but with a different name. Im down with that i hope they include some of the features they had in Alpha like the The Planetary Council thing.

  • Sounds cool. Only thing I am concerned about is whether they will improve their horrid MP structure.