Curmudgeon Gamer
Curmudgeoning all games equally.
28 October 2005
Civ IV: Where's the personal touch?
I've been playing the Civilization series for a while, as the screenshot on this blurb I wrote a while back implies. It's been, to date, a great run.

But what's almost strangely missing in an era where football games let you decide what sorts of freebies to give away to entice fans to the stadium -- I'm using that to represent much too much detail in games where it isn't needed -- where are the minigames that allow Civilization leaders to interact, well, personally with other civ leaders? What if Queen Isabella has a, um, liking for Chairman Mao?

What the Civ series does is put the gamer in the privileged position of becoming the state in the same way kings (and a few queens) used to all but literally embody their kingdoms. Nevermind that the vassals/citizens are all virtual; that's precisely the beauty. Now we can all lead with the authority of [the] G/god[s].

What's missing, obviously, is the way the humanity of these holy/elected/powerful leaders influences all of history, and I don't just mean that Gingis Khan tends to get mad quickly. At some point, I'd expect the Civ series to get to the point that it at least offers the player a chance to interact personally (virtualy speaking) with other leaders, merging Sim with Civ to a degree, and some real learning (kinda like what I pitifully tried to talk about here) about how irrational the development of the world really is could take place.
--ruffin at 13:49
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