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70 of 77 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Overall a pretty good game.
What there is to like:
-Combat is much more interesting than previous Civilization games, and it has completely alleviated the problem from previous games where you would simply build a massive stack of one unit and click on the enemy units until they died.
-Units have much more clear and differentiated roles. The ranged unit updates bring the game in line with...
Published on December 24, 2011 by Deedly

versus
111 of 133 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars BRUTALLY UNCIVILIZED
The working relationship between a game designer and his publisher is never a simple one. So I would not know where exactly to place the blame, Sid Meyer or 2K GAMES. But in the end, it does not matter. Because it is simply sad to see a great gaming franchise came to this.

THIS IS NOT A CIVILIZATION GAME
A great number of major features of this beloved...
Published 19 months ago by NeuroSplicer


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70 of 77 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Overall a pretty good game., December 24, 2011
What there is to like:
-Combat is much more interesting than previous Civilization games, and it has completely alleviated the problem from previous games where you would simply build a massive stack of one unit and click on the enemy units until they died.
-Units have much more clear and differentiated roles. The ranged unit updates bring the game in line with the traditional role of cavalry, infantry, and missile weapons in warfare.
-Civilizations are very different and can create a whole different game on different plays, especially if you prefer epic length so that you can get a proper war in each era.
-Landscapes and borders look more natural.
-The City-State system keeps you active in the early game, even when playing a cultural or scientific strategy.

What I do not like:
-I can see the reasoning behind separating the science from income with the increased importance of gold, but the change makes a focus on science less integrated into your top level strategy and more incidental. I don't feel like you have as many non-wonder options to excel at science.
-Overall the AI is pretty terrible at combat and only succeeds at higher difficulties because of numerical advantages built into the system.
-Balance between the civilizations is terrible across the board.
-Diplomacy with other civilizations is meaningless, they will betray you for no reason whatsoever if it looks like you might obtain a victory condition.
-Lag tends to bog down multiplayer games on maps larger than standard at the end.

Overall I think they're onto something, and I hope that they can polish the game out the same way Civilization 4 was polished out by its expansions.
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111 of 133 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars BRUTALLY UNCIVILIZED, January 8, 2013
By 
NeuroSplicer (Freeside, in geosynchronous orbit) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
= Fun:2.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Sid Meier's Civilization V Game of the Year - PC (DVD-ROM)
The working relationship between a game designer and his publisher is never a simple one. So I would not know where exactly to place the blame, Sid Meyer or 2K GAMES. But in the end, it does not matter. Because it is simply sad to see a great gaming franchise came to this.

THIS IS NOT A CIVILIZATION GAME
A great number of major features of this beloved series have been simply removed. A fellow gamer called this Civilization V, "Civilization For Dummies" and he is absolutely right.
There is no trading maps or technologies. There is no claiming resources outside your borders by building a colony. There is no need for transport ships as, apparently, units are now all..amphibious (and they need 15-20 turns to cross an ocean!). There are no city-growth milestone requirements (granary, aqueduct, refrigeration). There is no culturally conquering an enemy city (detonating a "culture bomb" by consuming a Great Artist will only get you extra territory tiles but no cities). There are no spies nor health/pollution balance. And there are no armies (please read on).

ARMY CASTRATION
Someone please tell me what was so wrong with armies that had to be yanked out? Napoleon almost conquered Europe with one army. Germany almost conquered the eastern hemisphere with three and the US still holds a two-and-a-half armies doctrine. How can a turn-based game be called Civilization unless one can emulate, well, a real civilization? Building an army, seasoning it on minor conflicts and then going for the enemy's capital was one of the most fun parts of any Civilization game. Why, Sid?

YOU MAY BE ABLE TO LAUNCH INTO SPACE YET CANNOT CLIMB MOUNTAINS?!
Movement should be hindered by rough terrain. Units that have 3 or 4 moves on the plains should not be expected to do more than 1 or 2 on a mountain, right? Well, no. Mountains seem to be those magical places no unit can climb or pass through (not even ...helicopters of jet fighters!). And I cannot see how this makes for more complicated strategic decisions than timing your movements, claiming the high ground and having a bonus for elevated artillery?

UNIT STAMPEDE
A major issue for me, this was what really ruined the game. For some unfathomable reason units cannot be stacked. A worker can coexist with a military unit but that's it. Artillery and shock-cavalry are very vulnerable to attacks and (with the new hexagon layout) one would need ...six defensive units to protect a single artillery battery.
As a result, units keep getting on each other's way (especially when ordered to move for distances that require more than a turn), they refuse to even pass through friendly units (!) and the "tactical" considerations that result from this are trivial. And whenever besieging an enemy city, one has to endlessly maneuver his units around it (while exposed to its bombardment) whereas wounded units are never easy to withdraw.
You cannot even garrison more than a single unit within a city. Not that it would make a difference, since the garrisoned unit is not automatically awaken to fight back when the city is under attack(!), the city is left to defend itself.

CAN YOU REALLY COMMAND WITHOUT A...CENTRAL COMMAND?
The economy is nose-diving into the red and you want to reduce the percentage going into research for a while to avoid having units of yours deleted one by one? The fickle people of your civilization are unhappy and you want to placate them by increasing their entertainment allocation? You have discovered conscription and you want to upgrade all your musketeers into recruits? Well, tough luck! There is not central command screen to do so. Only advisers that you have to thank for annoying you.
You have very little control of your cities resource distribution and zero control of your national economy. And units have to be hunted down and upgraded one by one.
Speaking of the economy, when are we going to see a Civilization game where one can run and manage a national debt?

NO FREE EYE-CANDY IN THIS UNIVERSE. NOT EVEN A STALE ONE.
The game does look new and polished and the units are well designed but not cutting edge and not without a steep hardware price. If you expect anything comparable to STARCRAFT II crispiness you will be disappointed - at my 1280x1024 resolution it is not easy to discern roads from railroads.
The system I am running my copy consists of a P7 920 on a MSI Eclipse with 3GB of RAM and an ASUS nVIDIA GTX-260. Even with a couple years old PC in a WinXP environment (I refuse to forgo my game collection for the latest Windows OS), apparently I cannot even try the highest DX9 settings (the game crashes at launch) but I managed to optimize them with a mix of high and medium. Even then, whenever I scroll to a different location of the map, I can see the image fleshing out, just like zooming in a Google-Earth map.
So one can only wonder: why should one need a Cray to run a Civilization game at full?

A CIVILIZATION SOLD LIKE A SALAMI
In slices. DLC slices, that is. So far there have been over a dozen DLCs (of which only 9 are included in this GOTY edition of the game). All are sold separately and each one contains a small portion of what was supposed to be an essential part of the game. Were there any Civilization games in the past that did not include the Babylonians or the Persians? No. And when was it that a Civilization game cost over $150 complete? Never.

STEAM OF WAR
The game requires OnLine Activation (and perpetual reactivation every few days) and has to be tied to a STEAM account. Effectively this means that the game is a piece of rentware the buyer never really owns and yet it is sold at full price. I realize that to some people this may not be a serious issue so, in case you are wondering, I deducted a single star from my overall rating of the game because of its DRM scheme. To every other gamer however, you can now make an informed decision.

This was a major disappointment. I never though I'd say this but I while playing the latest Civilization game I caught myself wondering if they would ever make...CALL TO POWER III.

New gamers, steer clear of this mess, this is NOT what a Civilization game plays like.
Seasoned gamers, we know better than to call this a Civilization game.

Sorry Sid, EPIC FAIL.
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70 of 86 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars GOTY Gets Together a Game of Ages, January 18, 2012
By 
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Sid Meier's Civilization V Game of the Year - PC (DVD-ROM)
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Update: 24 NOV 2012.

If you didn't know it from previous reviews, you know now that Brian Ranzoni has played *Civilization* from the first game, in the MS-DOS days on a POS 386. Once I joined the Windows 95 revolution, I bought Sid Meier's Civilization II at the San Diego "dry side" Navy Exchange, and ruled the waves over every title in the main PC series since. Even pursued the Call to Power for a while (though no facebook, mobile, console, or Alpha Centauri, sorry to say).

Of all I've played, Civilization V is the best in the series in several respects. Yet isn't enough of an advance over number IV to make it a must-have for every fan. The GOTY edition collects all of the download content into one package--though there are expansion, performance and DRM issues to consider.

---Web Alert---

On the back of the box, in bold italic type, glares the Steam internet activation notice. For concerned gamers, here are some salient points:

> Once Civ 5 is activated and up to date, neither net nor disc is needed for single player. Steam has an off-line mode that, yes, can be activated off-line.
> Steam saves your game to local disk by default, so don't worry about cloud access unless you've set the game to save there.
> Civ 5 can launch from the desktop game icon to bypass the Steam browser.
> You can also set the game to not update automatically.
> Once activated, users may uninstall and reinstall the game as often as you wish, and even lose the disc and the code and Steam will still have a copy of the game for you.

Note that there are general catches to Steam. Also, some developers can force their own DRM on top (such as in Command & Conquer 4). That isn't the case here, yet you cannot resell or return the download version, and the same also applies to this DVD-ROM once you have activated the game.

---Performance---

Civ V is hardware intensive even in the low-end DX9 mode with graphic features turned off. I played it for months on an Intel dual core system, with a GTX 9600 graphics card, and 4 gigs of RAM. Then my brother played the game for several weeks on an AMD Athlon quad-core, with an ATI HD card, and also 4 gigs of RAM.

Both the regular and the GOTY editions of the game cause our GPU fans to accelerate up to 100% at all times, a problem known, yet with no known resolution. Especially in late game or on large maps, texture-popping and loading problems persist; sometimes accompanied by frame or unit stutter. Dialing down the video options will postpone but not prevent these issues. Otherwise, Civ V has not suffered from the memory leak problems of Civ IV, allowing me to play every campaign to its conclusion without a turn-limit crash. It does take some time to boot from a SATA II drive, while saved games take an even longer time.

Since then, I run the game on a custom Intel quad core with 8 GBs Corsair RAM, the Radeon HD 6850, and a WD Caviar Black drive. The first time up, I had to let the opening video play all the way through. Once I got in, futzed with the options, and rebooted it a few times for the cache: the game now runs beautifully, boots swiftly, and loads faster on DX 11. While I still got the GPU fan racing when the card was installed in the old machine, there is no problem when running the Radeon off an Intel DZ68BC mobo.

---The Main Event---

Check out my original Amazon review to learn about the core game. This section is a follow up, because both single and multiplayer have been patched in all areas from interface to engine to gameplay.

Diplomacy is one pumped example. Patches restored the ability to read each point of behavior that pleased or PO'd your rivals, and have also bumped up trade options. Each civ has the ability to denounce rivals and enter into or break various secret agreements; they can even choose to postpone their participation in a military coalition, and then renege on the deal when the deadline comes. The execution gets to be a bit nonsensical as the game progresses, with computer civs becoming so entangled in obligations that close friends become worst enemies in the course of four turns. To that end, patched games even include a "Backstabbing" feature, in which your own suddenly ex-allies will taunt you with their betrayal.

With updates and DLC, the game still retains fundamental gaps. Including the lack of wonder movies; the void of religions, corporations, espionage, vassalage; and the absence of sickness and corruption that made Civilization IV so delightful. V went further to nix the end game charts and replays (since returned by patch), and also to replace era-specific soundtrack with motifs for each civilization.

Some missing pieces are balanced by new things: such as Natural Wonder tiles and Great People tile improvements, the ability to build more than two National Wonders in a city, boosting the civilization cap from 18 to 20, boosted city defenses and offenses, the addition of influence wars over city-states, and the ability to reduce the cost of expansion by turning captured cities into puppets.

---Modding---

The greatest strength lies not in these moderations, but in modder nation--Civ 5 has a full suite of game-bending tools. Such as the in-game utility to browse, download, and manage almost 900 free mods as of this writing, many of them made by CivFanatic veterans and developers. Once installed, each file can be activated or deactivated with a click, and includes tooltip warnings to let you know when a mod is mutually exclusive with others.

Outside the main game, load up the most complete development kit in the series so far. Civs III and IV required a lot of tedious tinkering with text files. Civ V gathers the map, scenario, and civilization editing tools under a single interface.

---What You See is What You Get---

Now we gather to decide the singular money question. For the GOTY edition, you get the core plus all of the official downloadable content. Including the digital soundtrack from the original Deluxe edition. This does not count the Gods and Kings expansion pack. You can read my review on that pack; the salient point here is that G&K significantly improves the game in some areas, but some may balk at paying for features that should have been present in the core game to begin with.

Getting back to GOTY, I wouldn't call the existing DLCs essential. Especially compared to the Beyond the Sword mega-expansion for Civ IV, none of them push the abilities of the game engine, taking players into science fiction or fantasy scenarios to boot. However, if you've played out the original civs, scenarios, and maps, these DLC packs will give you fresh faces.

Wargamers and modders will get the best use of this edition because of the powerful tools and major military changes at their disposal. Historical scenarios ought to appeal to counterfactual gamers as well. On the other hand, the complete *Civilization IV* set with BTS is a plenty diverse outing--mixing old-school gameplay with the most content, backed by a robust library of mods from an active community. If more casual gamers have stayed by this previous title, either wait for the price to drop, or for a bundle deal with *Gods and Kings* before you make the upgrade to Civ V.

---This is the End---

I concluded my first review by saying "With years of fan mods and official DLC down the road, it is too early to say how this edition will turn out." After about two years, *Sid Meier's Civilization V* has turned out an entertaining tactical experience. The best of the franchise in graphics and wargaming. Yet fraught with the kind of quirks that come with odd-numbered entries in the series.

The GOTY edition does its part by collecting the official titles into one convenient package. No bonus content. And like a lot of games-of-the-year, it requires internet activation followed by a convoy of patches. This edition will work best for those who initially resisted the jump--and for wargamers, modders, and historical players--because the collection does not pose a complete advancement over Civ IV + BTS. With Gods and Kings coming this summer to restore some missed elements, customers may wish to wait even longer and see if another bundle comes out in 2013. Nevetheless, Civ 5 continues to be a compelling inclusion in the franchise.
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18 of 23 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Annoyed at myself, February 19, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Sid Meier's Civilization V Game of the Year - PC (DVD-ROM)
I am so annoyed I ignored other reviews and bought this game. It REQUIRES Steam (an online access point) to play. They tell you it is not required, only to register, but it is required. Took all night to download the game, basically you might as well buy the download because that is what you are doing anyway even though they give you a box and a disc. They seem more worried about getting you on a STEAM account so they can show you ads than they are about the game working properly. Run away and don't look back.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Good game but not happy with the Steam platform, August 18, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Sid Meier's Civilization V Game of the Year - PC (DVD-ROM)
Game is good but does not represent a huge change over previous versions. The biggest change is that one is required to load and keep Steam on one's computer for the game to work. The fine print on the box says it is only required for activation, but the game doesn't work if one removes Steam. Game forums say that turning Steam into Offline mode will make it unobtrusive, but it keeps popping up and recommending that I play with the Steam community, and keeps trying to run updates on a service I don't even want. Stick to Civ 4.
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20 of 26 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Steam -- Just Say "No", March 27, 2013
By 
Craig (IL United States) - See all my reviews
= Fun:4.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Sid Meier's Civilization V Game of the Year - PC (DVD-ROM)
I started with Civ II, and have played through every version since. Civ V is a teriffic game, but it's association with Steam ruins it. I always considered Steam to be merely annoying, but that was when it worked. It doesn't work anymore, so I naively thought I could fix the problem by uninstalling it and reinstalling it on my pc. I quickly learned that the entire game is now permanently disabled. Steam will not allow me to reinatall, nor will Steam respond to my inquiries. Apparently, the only way to get the game back is to buy it again and hope that Steam will allow me to install it. And if I'm lucky, I can look forward to another year or so of being annoyed with Steam. I will never purchase anything associated with Steam again.
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42 of 58 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A reconsideration of the title only changes my opinion slightly, January 22, 2012
By 
Jvstin "Paul Weimer" (Twin Cities, MN United States) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
= Fun:2.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Sid Meier's Civilization V Game of the Year - PC (DVD-ROM)
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I bought the original version of Civilization V back in 2010. I gave it, to my reluctant chagrin, a one-star review. I've been playing Civilization since the first, and this latest iteration did not even rise to the flawed level of Civilization III, much less be near the near-perfection gem of Civilization IV.

I had the opportunity to try the Civilization V Game of the Year edition, with a bunch of new civilizations, some maps and scenarios, and most importantly, a year and change of patches and tweaks.

I'm not going to lie to you and say that this version is suddenly the bees knees. The problems I had with the design decisions have not changed. 1 Unit per turn is still implemented in a poor manner. The "every thing to every person" design decision to try and make small empires and large empires equally viable still means that this is a boat-car of the game.

The additional material isn't, as far as I could tell, even on the disk itself. You still need to install steam and log into your account to get the DLCs, and maps and all of the bonus content. And that bonus content is weak sauce compared to the expansions we had for Civ IV.

The game plays better than it did, those patches did make for a less frustrating experience, but its still not anywhere near what it could be, and the game can be awfully dull. Pressing the turn button again and again to get to something happening is NOT the recipe for a good strategy game.

So, I gave it 1 star for the original, there is enough change and improvement here to get the game up to 2 stars. It's now about on par with the clusterflock known as Elemental. I still don't recommend it, and expect that it is going to be soon gathering digital dust again.

I'd still rather play Civilization IV.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars DO NOT Purchase if expecting to be like previous Civilization Games, July 4, 2014
By 
John O'Neill (STEWARTSTOWN, PA, US) - See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Sid Meier's Civilization V Game of the Year - PC (DVD-ROM)
Steam is a PIA, do not order this game if you are expecting the same great experience you had with the previous versions (1-4). I will be returning my copy ASAP as I have spent the entire day trying to get the game to install properly. I guess I'll stick with Civilization IV and will forget about purchasing any future versions. Sad end to a once great line of games....
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Overly complicated, December 26, 2013
By 
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Sid Meier's Civilization V Game of the Year - PC (DVD-ROM)
They took a beautifully designed game (Civ 4) and made it overly complicated. The result is a game that is not user friendly. It also lacks some very basic features, like being able to stack units during warfare (something my husband, in particular, misses).

The graphics are beautiful, but it's not enough to make up for the vast changes they made that just don't click for us. We'll continue playing Civ 4 instead. Hopefully, when Civ 6 comes out, it will be better!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Continuing Civilization Goodness, May 10, 2013
By 
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Sid Meier's Civilization V Game of the Year - PC (DVD-ROM)
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Civ5 continues the franchise's tradition of keeping me awake until dawn

Early release problems have been ironed out in the "Game of the Year" edition and additional DLC/bonus material is added to the original package. The graphics are so much prettier than Civ4, and the music remains enjoyable-- not tedious, even after hours of listening. The UI has improved, and it's a little easier to avoid getting bogged down in management details, looking for units without orders, and so forth than it was in Civ4.

The game runs easily on my Intel i5 system on Windows7 with a mid-range Nvidia 460 discrete graphics card.

Many of the less favorable reviews here are based on early teething pains-- unfortunately, major software packages don't have the extensive beta period they really need, so almost all major games launch with some initial bugs.

Other problems center around Steam. Steam-style online-DRM schemes are difficult to escape today, so I don't penalize Civ for that either. Keep in mind if you have an earlier edition of Civ in your Steam account, adding this one will just update the first one, not give you the expected "two rights-to-use". Instead you need to set up a second Steam account if you have 2 valid copies of the game-- this problem bit me when I was trying to make it so the GF and I could each play Civ5 at the same time on different computers.

I'm an old-timer in the Civ world, all the way back to the first version (and every version in between). This most recent release is beautiful, playable, and has even drawn my newbie GF into the fold. Recommended.
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Sid Meier's Civilization V Game of the Year - PC
Sid Meier's Civilization V Game of the Year - PC by Aspyr Media (Windows Vista / XP)
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