Civilization IV is a fantastic game. In fact, any game starting with “Sid Meier’s” is probably going to be awesome. But the Civilization series in particular has always gripped me, and kept me playing for hours on end. There’s something so satisfying about finally taking over the world through an ideal combination of war, politics, culture, science and/or religion.
Or, if you’re like me, just war. If it weren’t for the silly things you have to do in this life to get by (like working, sleeping and eating), I’d probably be playing Civ a lot more.
I miss building my own (entirely useless) palaces, though.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve played Civilization games aplenty, and have more than once thought to myself: “God DAMNIT, the sun is coming up, and I haven’t even nuked Tenochtitlan yet!” But even with all of the experience that I have racked up in this game, I am embarrassingly terrible at it. Of course, at the “Settler” difficulty level, I am like a god. I command troops and cities, and bend other cultures to my will with a mere waggle of my finger. And while this is fun and all, it’s not so satisfying when my final leadership score is equivalent to Dan Quayle.
Ghandi is a total dick.
So it’s time to ratchet the difficulty level up a notch to “Chieftain”. This is where I run into problems. Suddenly, my tried and true method of attacking everyone in sight is failing me. I fall behind in expanding my empire, all the good land is taken, I make no friends because I have nothing of value to trade, and even the damn barbarians are ahead of me in technology! So embarrassing. Back to “Settler” for me, to get revenge on all those who wronged me in this game.
But it doesn’t end there. I thought maybe the difficulty levels had odd scaling, and maybe the computer cheats a bit here and there, and spawns the good resources near their towns. So I figured I’d try a game with a bunch of real live people. I’m a (relatively) smart guy, I can figure this out and at least hold my own against real people, right? Wrong. In my current game against fellow Mefighters (LODers? LODkos? I like LODkos), I am just barely beating the guy who hasn’t logged in in a month. And that’s only because of the generosity and kindness of a fellow player who I am pretty sure felt sorry for me, and helped me out with some much needed technologies. Ah well, I think now my mission is just survival, or, if things improve a bit for me, going down in a flaming nuke catapult of glory!