Civilization is not unlike chess. It’s a turn-based strategy game where the opponent sees your every action and is able to react to it without haste. The major difference is the fact that here you are able to move all the pieces when it is your turn.
However, it doesn’t mean that you don’t need to mind the time. Actually, it is quite the opposite, since every single turn may prove crucial to reaching your objectives. For example, if you send your troops to a wrong tile, you may get surrounded by the enemy, or prevent yourself from reach the intended destination in time to stop an attack.
On the other hand, if you have been making the right choices about your policies, even surrounded soldiers might survive and form an important strategic stronghold.
These aspects are what makes the Civilization games fascinating, but also extremely hard to master. Let us help you get a firm grasp on the game’s mechanics.
Setting up your game
Each civilization is represented by a leader and has its specific bonuses and weaknesses. This means that each faction requires a different playstyle in order to succeed. Below you can find the developer’s official guide to selecting your civilization, but you don’t need to overthink your choice. As a beginner, simply choose the nation you sympathize with. Your first objective should be to simply get acquainted with the game’s mechanics.
Founding your first city
As you start the game, you will have two units at your disposal: settlers and explorers (a military unit). Don’t waste time and establish your first city right away. The first turns are extremely important and any delay may bring a significant disadvantage, since your enemy is not going to wait until you settle down.
Start creating more units and facilities as soon as you can, so you don’t have to order fragile settlers to explore the area. Usually at the start of the game you are placed at a quite beneficial place anyway, so the only excuse to move settlers before founding the first town would be to move them closer to a river or the sea, but not too far from other resources.
Now you can start exploring. You will see that there are ruins (in Civilization V) or tribal villages (in Civilization VI) pretty much everywhere. Finding them can give you a great starting advantage. Some of them will even provide instant technologies that would take many turns to research. You can also discover city-states that will pay you higher tributes if you are the first to meet them. Furthermore, you ought to map the barbarian camps around, because those will give you a big headache if you don’t pay enough attention.
It is so important to explore that we suggest making an extra exploration unit first (a scout). Other unit types can wait.
Keep in mind that you will be able to create more settlers and establigh more cities further in the game, so the exploration is also important to define your expansion strategy, considering the placement of your opponents and resources.
Winning the game
Explorating and developing your civilization serves a higher purpose of meeting the winning conditions of the game. There are many ways to succeed, but you shouldn’t focus on just one. Instead, work towards every single one of them from the first turn. Your goals are:
1 – Domination
This one is easy to understand but hard to perform: the game ends when one of the players controls the capital city of every other nation in the game. Achieving this kind of victory requires a strong military power. You will be constantly taking part in conflicts, one after other.
2 – Culture
The most difficult goal to achieve, with victory conditions varying in each version of the game. In short, it requires you to develop a culture that will dominate the world. You should generate as much Culture and Tourism as you can, so people are attracted to your civilization. We will take an in-depth look at strategies in the articles to come.
3 – Science
This type of victory also differs between the many versions of the game. In Civilization VI, for example, the player should reach three goals:
– Launch a satellite,
– Send a person to the Moon,
– Establish a colony on Mars.
It’s a kind of a race between you and the other players, and to win it, you should focus on generating Science points.
4 – Religion
If your start a religion and make more than 50% of the world’s cities follow it, you will achieve a religious victory.
5 – Time/Score
If none of the players achieve any kind of victory the year 2050 (500 turns in a standard game), the game will declare the civilization with the highest score the winner. In this case the most crucial factors are: wonders, research level and population.
Now you have the basic information needed to shine as a leader of a civilization. Many other aspects can be observed and learned in-game. Mind that this is only the first chapter of our guide, as Civilization is a complex. Get Civilization games on Kinguin and stay tuned for upcoming guides!