Civilization VI


Bingo. The AI just keeps shoving it’s ludicrous deficiencies in your face over and over. It makes it real hard to turn a blind eye to it when it keeps forcing you to deal with the incompetence.

My complaint isn’t that the AI in Civ5/6 doesn’t play at an expert level, it’s that it doesn’t understand the very basics of the game. I’m talking egregiously stupid shit, like declaring wars when it can’t reach you, leading an attack with un-escorted Great Generals for a long time in Civ5, or sending defenseless Settlers wandering through my territory shortly after declaring. Civ5 modders fixed these issues using the tools provided by Firaxis, which proves all it takes is some effort on their part.

Fixing glaring issues like that wouldn’t make the AI play at an expert level, but at least it wouldn’t be so embarrassingly neglected.


And they keep adding more and more fiddly shit that the AI couldn’t possibly understand and utilize, even beyond the tactical stuff over to the economic stuff. It still can’t even figure out how to generate tourism, you think it’s ever going to figure out governors or golden/dark ages?


I would point Ed to stuff like Sulla’s articles or any number of Realms beyond Civ threads.

There’s “obscure loopholes only hardcore experts would spot” (the great person or civil service slingshot in Civ 4), and then there’s “how the hell did this make it through a single play session, let alone prolonged testing?”

I don’t even think it’s all casual appeal. There’s nothing friendly about Civ6’s UI, casual or expert. The slow movement rule change is frustrating to both first time and expert players. The psycho diplomacy harshes people who just want to play Civ City and experts who want strategic competition choices.


One would hope that the difficulty levels would cover the needs of the casual and hardcore strategy gamer. If someone wants a pushover experience, set the game to beginner and have at it. Expert players should get a good challenge out of the highest difficulty and not just because the AI get artificial resource boosts.


Yeah, as I posted way up the thread, I agree that the military AI is just egregiously bad. The one problem with playing the Cree is that you then get to see more areas of the map, where your allies can see… and thus have to watch AI versus AI wars. I don’t know whether to laugh or to cry. You would think both sides had been paid to throw the fight.

However… From what you post, you are nowhere near as far along the spectrum towards “casual player” as you may be thinking. People like you and me might not be Civ militarists, but we have played the game so often that instead of getting the thrill of intense competition when two neighbors declare a joint war on us… well, we have seen this too many times to do anything but yawn. And so this flaw in the game affects us very differently than it affects new players (and very differently than it affected me the first time I played).

Assuming you are answering my post, I really don’t think you are understanding the conundrum I am describing. It’s not as simple as difficulty levels. The “more stuff” that they have added to appeal to players on early playthroughs ends up making it pretty much impossible to have a game that holds up well once players have transitioned from playing “Guide a Civilization through History” to “Sharp Use of Game Rules.” They have created a game with too much stuff for any conceivable AI that could be developed by a company of this size. And that is just part of it.


I agree with this completely. I’d so much rather play Civ V than VI. It’s not about one having some kind of abstract complexity more sophisticated than the other. It’s that CIv V actually seems designed - for better or worse - where Civ VI seems made by… a team that’s just… less… sophisticated of designers. It’s both more grognardy and completely dysfunctional, full of ironic choices and world-weary game making. I wouldn’t say slapdash? Civ VI seems to have a much worse intuitive grasp on how all the moving pieces fit together.


Actually I think @Telefrog might be onto something. I hadn’t really considered it before, but maybe they should have two different experiences. On beginner, you get the one with all these complex game systems that are fun for the player, but that the AI is unable to handle. But on Prince and harder, it strips away those systems and has a simpler game, but one that’s more challenging because the AI is better able to handle this simpler systems.


I’ll freely admit I am probably not a casual player by most definitions. I’m probably hardcore for most genres even, and yeah if I like a game, I don’t easily get bored with it, especially strategy/ city-builder, and I’ll play for years. I do think there is a group above me though, it’s not the speedrun or play 10 hours a day group, although they’re there too, it’s the I see an exploit and it ruins it group and the the only way to maximize your outcome or efficiency group that will say if you don’t build your 3rd city by round 60 might as well start over group.I can consciously ignore some exploits because I prefer to play the spirit of the game.

… but until recently it seemed like Civilization did what none of the Paradox games seem to really do, cater to the casual crowd, the top tier crowd and then those of us who are somewhere between those two ends.

My point is… I find this game not hugely enjoyable as a sort of middle tier, middle ground player. It’s not just that top group they’re losing, and I think that’s unfortunate. My sister has always been less picky about her games on some level, but at the same time, she played Dwarf Fortress for a couple of years, and I just didn’t touch it. She’s not really casual either but in many ways, more casual than I am.


Spring update available now.

  • Joint Wars
  • 12 new historic moments
  • End game summary screen
  • Balance and bug fixes


I got excited when I saw the end game summary screen, but alas it is new graphs. 3 new graphs that I’m sure are just as unreadable as the current crop of graphs.

AI development still looks lacklustre. Only one way to find out for sure. But at the same time, I have many other, better games to play.


A feeble stab at a halfway decent end game summary screen, 2 years after release.

This is so sad.


Lackluster end game screens are the least sad thing about Civ 6.


What happened to the Firaxis Civ group? It feels like they have no one on the team with roots going back to CIv IV who can say, “these things are important to our long-time Civ players (graphs, data, end game summaries amoungst other things). They need to be part of the game on release… in full and not half-assed”.

The abysmally slow patch schedules on top of this makes me wonder what’s going on there.


They haven’t made a new civ game “because they had a great idea” for a very long time. What happened to them is exactly what happens to anything creative that falls into a rut and only keeps getting made because you’re pretty sure it will sell.


I think people should earn some sort of merit badge just for making it to the end of a game!


I think 1UPT was a disaster, but I think it was “great idea” that in theory sounded like it could radically change the game for the better. I think they (and myself) were wrong and that it just doesn’t work, but it did feel like they were trying to take the series to new places. Unfortunately, it feels like the franchise has just been in milk mode since then, as you described.


This a hundred times.


Sometimes I think QT3 is in a disconnect from what happening regarding Civ and the wider gaming population.

Civ V currently sits at number 18 and Civ VI at number 22 on the Steam stats (most of the games above them are action games). For the longest time Civ V consistently held its place in the top 10 on current player stats.

I don’t have a major point or objection to what everyone is saying here, but those metrics don’t strike me as Firaxis just coasting by on their reputation and not giving a shit.

Firaxis is clearly making strategy games that have a large following. Maybe a lot of the players of V and VI are new to the series so they are experiencing the initial wonder that the old guard felt when starting with 1-3 and are less jaded after decades of Civ games. I’m not entirely sure.


While there are lots of new players, it doesn’t mean they should throw away many of the things the players who’ve been around since I-IV have loved so much. It’s unnecessary.


There’s a disconnect, for sure. We’re a forum filled with a lot of strategy game grognards. Steam is full of a lot of people which likely first played a 4X with Civ5. I think you can see a lack of some of that “fresh car smell” in the lukewarm reception to Civ6.


To be clear, I think Steam reviews are worthless as any sort of measurement of quality. But in terms of how the game is seen by the masses, I think the All Reviews category is a good metric (the Recent tends to often just be angry carpet bombers these days).