Imagine if all of the well known world leaders through history had to battle one another for world domination? That’s the neat basis of Civilization Revolution, which is a deluxe turn based strategy experience that has gained a huge fan base. Now, there’s Civilization Revolution 2, which builds upon the original with a new graphics engine, new world leaders, new technologies, and new military units. The heart of the game is still the same as you try to build up your settlements, military units, and technological advancements to take on other world powers.
The game begins in BC times, and advances to present day with technologies, and military units that go along with the different time periods. There a couple of ways to play beginning with a random map to provide a unique strategy set-up every single time. There are also pre-built scenarios based on major world events, which are the most intriguing part of the game, as you dive into the action much quicker. No matter which style you choose, it comes down to building up your forces to then go out, and explore the map. Each new encounter has the potential to lead to a partnership, or conflict, and the game gives you a constant supply of decisions to make. Whether you’re building up your settlements, and going face to face with an enemy’s army, you need to strategize as to the best route to build up your civilization.
There’s a whole lot of depth to explore, but with that said, the sequel doesn’t necessarily add that much. It’s essentially the original with a new coat of paint, streamlined touch controls, and a few new features. If you’re familiar with the original, you will likely be more disappointed to see such little change. Even if you have never heard of the original, you may be disappointed just in the set-up of the sequel. The game gives you very little insight on how to play, and the majority of the game is simply figuring out what various features do, and what your best plan of action is. For example, the game doesn’t explain upgrading units, stealing enemy settlements, the benefits of different technologies, or even the caravans. It’s not that hard to figure out, but the bare bones tutorial leaves quite a bit to be desired for first time players.
Another surprising aspect of Civilization Revolution 2 is how tedious some matches can be. Once you have a number of units out on the play field, it becomes a hassle to move each one with a spread out map, and no clear path to victory. The random maps take a long time to develop, and the specific scenarios shoe horn you into either conflict, or exploration tactics. There’s a lot to get to, but it takes awhile just to figure out everything that’s going on, and then you have to be patient enough to stick with the game. It seems the developers tried to make Civilization Revolution 2 for iOS more accessible than other versions, but Firaxis has done a much better job with their Ace Patrol series in that regard, and Xcom in terms of deluxe strategy. Civilization Revolution 2 seems to be caught in the middle between aiming for deluxe strategy, and accessibility leaving a rather uninteresting experience in its wake.
Civilization Revolution 2 ($14.99, Universal) just doesn’t live up to the price tag for fans of the series as it doesn’t add much at all. It’s also not that appealing for newcomers as it falls off the tight rope of in depth strategy, and accessibility making it one to skip.