Civilization 6: Rise and Fall in Test – Class extension with old issues
Civilization 6 ( buy now for 26.50 € ) already offered a wealth of gameplay mechanics and features in its release in October 2016. The round strategy game appeared in its basic version already with many elements, which made the predecessor Civilization 5 only in the course of its two Add ons to the outstanding play. In addition, the developers have expanded the concept with the districts and other features. For the first expansion of Civ 6, the creators had to come up with a series of exciting innovations that bring a fresh breeze into the game.
In good and in bad times
Even more central is the story that you write through your actions with your civilization. Events and events that have barely been considered by the player now trigger special historical moments. You were the first people to make contact with a city-state, you built a miracle, you were the first civilization to circle the world – all of that and much more is now directly affecting the historical heritage of your people. These moments are captured in a chic, reminiscent of a parchment scroll overview.
These events, however, are not just a follow-up to your previous civilization achievements. Each of these moments also grants you a certain number of so-called Age Points. These become important as the world community advances into the next age after a certain time. The transition from antiquity to classical and the following ages is no longer strictly based on their own research successes, but globally.
So each game is divided into several small sections. When the age change takes place then the settlement. Anyone who has done little in recent years falls into a dark age with his people and has to accept disadvantages in terms of growth, production and loyalty. In return, particularly capable civilizations make it into a golden age and get paid bonuses. With time points not only for military success, but also for a multitude of peaceful events, ways of playing away from military conquest will finally be rewarded. The advantages and disadvantages of a golden or dark age have a clear effect and can have a significant influence on the respective empires. But a dark age does not feel like a punishment and does not automatically mean doom. Instead, the player is only faced with exciting new challenges, from which he can emerge with a little skill also significantly stronger.
The effects of the current age on the loyalty of your cities are most apparent. Especially in border regions, the lost confidence in a dark age combined with the influence of the nearby cities of neighboring civilization can become a problem. Similar to religion, every city now has a loyalty value that puts some pressure on surrounding settlements. The culture of your empire and the distance to the capital also play a role. It is therefore advantageous to build a coherent empire. Far scattered settlements are much more difficult to control. Thus, Civilization 6 also creates a good reflection of world history. Broad empires, such as the British Empire,
n the game, the loss of control affects the fact that cities without sufficient loyalty renounce their ancestral realm and become free cities. If the influence of another civilization is great enough, they peacefully join the other people over time. In this way, a civilization can also expand without direct war against its neighbors. With the help of spies, the process can be helped if necessary. This way of playing does not work as easily as, for example Civilization 4, where cultural pressure has allowed you to expand your boundaries in a big way. The new system is much more comprehensible.
Those who are not completely averse to the use of military, but also has quite simple goals with the free cities. Without having to start a war against another civilization, these cities can be taken for their own empire. But the original people can also force these cities back into the Reich with the help of their troops. To prevent the loss of a city, one should take measures to increase loyalty. First and foremost, it should be ensured that the inhabitants are satisfied and provided with sufficient amenities. It is also helpful to install a governor in the cities concerned.
Seven of these powerful new characters are introduced with Rise and Fall. Each governor clearly reinforces the loyalty of the city in which he is stationed. In addition, everyone has their own special strengths. While Victor gives various military bonuses, Pingala specializes in research. Diplomat Amani can even be deployed in a city-state to improve relations there. In this way, individual cities can specialize even more in specific areas. This strengthens once again the strategic depth in urban planning.
To appoint a governor, you need so-called governorship. These are earned via the registration research tree. You can then use the titles to appoint a new governor or to promote existing ones. Each of these special characters has five upgrades each, which further enhances its special features. Since the number of governors’ titles is limited, it is always before a strategic decision. This gives the player with his decisions again stronger influence on the development of his civilization.
Friends with Benefits
The same applies to the alliances. Although you’ve been able to form alliances with particularly friendly civilizations in the main game, Firise’s developers have significantly expanded this system with Rise and Fall. Five different types of alliances are now available to you. Depending on whether you choose a military, research, economic, cultural or religious alliance, you and your ally will receive different bonuses. It also depends on the Allies, which form of the alliance can come about.
In addition to the specializations of the covenants, these also increase in up to three levels. For this purpose, a score will be built up over the duration of the alliance. Once a certain threshold has been reached, the level and thus the bonuses that result for both partners from the connection increases. This is a reward for players who cultivate long-term relationships with other peoples. Thus, the new alliances give the feeling of a closer relationship with the ally, creating a better atmosphere of cooperation between civilizations. Another building block in this effort to promote more ways of playing away from mere militarism.
Help for the little ones
However, the game should not mutate into a completely pacifist event. This is ensured by the new international emergencies that may arise from time to time. A city-state was overrun by a powerful civilization, a holy city would in a foreign religion
converted or a small civilization is about to be wiped out. In such situations, an emergency can occur in which the peoples in a coalition stand together against a danger. Again, developers have been clearly inspired by historical incidents to create new challenges in advanced games.
The emergencies represent a good way to engage civilizations in major conflicts. In addition, they are a chance for repatriated peoples to weaken a hurried competitor. For the player emerge through the emergencies developments in the AI opponents in the center of attention, which he otherwise might have paid little attention. However, the system also suffers from the fact that it depends heavily on the AI. Because the computer opponents are not good team players. Either they are too indispensable to even respond to the emergency, or they pursue the set goal inadequate. Frequently, the chances of success are therefore rather low and a refusal of the emergency usually smarter so as not to strengthen the opponent even more.
Meaningful expansion with known quirks
The main drawback of the expansion is therefore that it does not manage to eliminate the largest construction site of the main game. The developers have made a few improvements to the AI with the patches since release, but this is still not really satisfactory. We are still denounced for completely absurd or incomprehensible reasons. So an AI player complained to us that in
A dark age even though it was in a dark age. Even the classic that we are denounced for missing spies, even though espionage is not yet explored, continues to occur. Also declarations of war remain not always understandable and sometimes quite arbitrary.
That said, Rise and Fall delivers exactly what you’d expect from a Civilization extension. The gameplay was expanded with many very well integrated features and the strategic depth thereby increased noticeably. It has been particularly successful in developing the game from too strong a focus on military style to more diversity. The development of one’s own civilization is again more in the hands of the player, who has more choices as to how he wants to deal with his people. We also liked that Rise and Fall gives more importance to individual moments and phases of the gameplay. So far, the expiration of a game Civilizaition 6 was very predictable, the add-on provides for more momentum, which is the game only too well.
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