Civilization has always been an exciting topic.
Learning the culture, society and way of life of a particular area is indeed a pleasant experience. It’s interesting to know how we have turned from primitive human being to civilized people. Learning is one thing, but how about having the first-hand experience of doing so? Would you believe me If I say you can build your own empire or civilization through a video game?
Yes, you have read it right. If you want to have an immersion in building civilization, play a strategy game called “Civilization”. Created by Sid Meier and Bruce Shelley for MicroProse in 1991, the main objective of this game is to “Build an empire to stand the test of time”. Civilization takes you back to 4000 BC and your role as a player is to attempt to expand and develop your empire through the ages from the ancient era until modern and near-future times.
If you aren’t sold of this game, below are some of the reasons that should convince you why playing Civilization for hours is worthy of your time and effort.
It is a Global Learning Experience
This game is a global learning experience in two ways. First, you get to acquire tidbits of information regarding arts, science, culture and history. Second, you get to know different historical characters and unique cultures all over the world. You get to know more the world that you live in without even stepping out of your house.
Let’s admit it; learning could sometimes be a bore. This game adds f-u-n to the learning experience. Voiceovers from renowned personalities such as Morgan Sheppard and Leonard Nimoy are featured in this game.
What’s even admirable about this game is that it’s been used by several academic institutions as their teaching tool in the classroom. This just proves that Civilization has a strong potential capability to educate. While many are contesting on the efficacy of these implementations, the series encourages students to do their own research about different civilization topics. If you’ve never heard of modern production methods, the technology trees featured at the end stage of this game will surely spark your interest on this subject.
Experience Building an Empire without the Stress
I can imagine how hard it must be for politicians to build an empire of community. It must be stressful to keep the community in order given that the residences have different type of personality and behavior. Civilization lets you experience the joy of building your own empire, albeit without the accompanying stress.
There is no doubt that empire-building games are indeed enjoyable and addictive. The lack of fast reflexes though is one of the reasons why some gamers don’t feel the same enthusiasm. In Real Time Strategy (RTS) games, the demand for “clicking and dragging” and being super-fast with your keyboard can be overwhelming. Your empire won’t even make it beyond the pre-historical era if you don’t have this skill.
Civilization is a different story. Since it is turn-based, you won’t need much of your reflexes. You can take as much of your precious time as possible to fiddle, contemplate and research before making a decision. Excellent strategic planning requires more time and deliberation and not how fast you can click and drag.
It Gives You a Taste of Real-World Grim Realities
This might scare off some gamers. After all, we play games to somehow escape from our real world and be transported to a world full of entertainment and adventure.
Yet, you will have far more memorable gaming experience if there is a right balance of fantasy and reality. Civilization got this balance right as the fantasy side of the game is somehow closer to the reality. These realities are presented in the form of diplomacy challenges and unhappiness. As the population grows, cities are suffering from increasing unhappiness. Each stage of the game presents a challenge to maintain the increasing population for economic and defense purposes, while doing everything possible to keep the citizens contented.
You must also handle diplomacy challenges well if you want to win the game. These challenges could be presented in the most unexpected moments. For example, a war can be suddenly declared by a total stranger. Your ally neighbor might turn against you because he was bribed.
These real-world crises could upset some gamers. However, you must understand that human race is very complex. This game does not only open your eyes to these complexities but it also teaches you to be strategic and patient.
It Features an Epic Music
Civilization is famous for its soundtrack. If you’re into classical or ethnic music, your ears would surely experience a “soundgasm”.
You will hear classical masterpieces by Brahms, Mozart and Dvořák in Civilization IV. These masterpieces accompanied the Industrial Age and Renaissance segments of the game. A more ethnic approach was chosen in Civilization V.
Playing this game will take you into an immersion experience in the world of music. Music lovers would feel that they are in a world festival, with different masterpieces serenading your soul
There is a Huge, Active Community of Mods
Some gamers would measure the worth of a game by the number of mods written by fans for it. With Sid Meier’s Civilization, you can find literally hundreds of mods written on different platforms. Many of these are even expertly and elaborately scripted. The list could include additional civilizations, additional leaders, tech-trees, new battle units, wonders and improvements and so on.
Having a huge, active community of mods empowers incredible variety of playing the game. Just imagine, how many ways can you play the games with hundreds of leaders, each with unique personalities, weaknesses and strengths?
And who says you can’t even make your own mods too? As long as you have the necessary skills, you can add your favorite world leader to the list and see how he would fare against other leaders. Every session has endless ways of becoming unpredictable and unique. This alone is more than enough reason for you to start playing this game.
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Life simulation video games have recently taken the video gaming world. A lot of people are getting hooked to this game. Why not, having the ability to manage your own restaurant or take care of your virtual farm is indeed addicting and enjoyable.
The Sims has been one of the most played life simulation strategy game since the first installment of this huge franchise was released. I remember a friend who talked nothing but his virtual people every time we hang out. It baffled me how she’s worried that her people may not be well-fed or any desired unfulfilled while she’s having her own real lunch with real people.
If you’re one of the million people who have been hooked to this game, you need to know everything there is to know about this successful franchise. As the latest franchise, The Sims 4, was released on 2014, you need to know the ins and outs of this game.
If you haven’t tried playing The Sims4 yet, below are some of the helpful tips that will come handy.
- Taking Care of Your Sim’s Needs
Just like its predecessors, you need to meet the needs of your Sims in this latest installment. You have a total of 6 categories to watch out for. These needs are displayed with a green bar as the game starts. You would only want the color to be green at all times. As more needs are neglected or not fulfilled as the day progresses, the bar will turn to yellow, then orange and red if things get worst. There are some serious consequences when you get a red bar so you must do everything to avoid this from happening.
How do you know that all the needs of your Sims are met?
Click on the smiley face that is in the bottom right corner of the screen.
- Understanding Their Aspirations
What are aspirations?
These are long-term goals that will help give your Sim something to work toward. It’s also the choice that you will have to make right from the “Create-a-Sim” screen so it’s important that you make a good decision from the start. Here’s the catch though. Just like how you can change your aspirations and goals in the real life, you also have the command to change the dreams and hopes of your Sims mid-game should you feel that something is not right. With just a click on the star in the bottom right corner, you can conveniently change your Sim’s aspirations.
How can aspirations impact the lives of your Sims?
First, it has an impact on their personalities. It also has a weight when it comes to choosing what skills or careers they must have. For example, choosing a knowledge aspiration can expedite the leveling up of your skills whereas fortune aspiration can cause your Sim in earning more money. When you feel that the aspirations are not paying off, you always have the liberty of switching it.
Click here to view the full list of aspirations available.
- Understanding Relationships + Social Lives
Socializing is not optional in The Sims 4. It’s the most basic needs of every Sim in this game. Regardless of what type of Sim they are, they feel the need to go out of the house and socialize with others. As a result, two different types of relationships are formed in socializing.
Basic friendship is the first type of relationship formed. This type of relationship will exist with every Sim that you will meet. Romantic relationship is the second one and this can only happen to a few Sims. Just like with real life, you can be friends with everyone but only a lover to someone, right?
You must ensure that you’re on top of your Sim’s relationship aspect as it plays a huge role in the game. You can gauge your relationship needs as you interact and mingle with others. You can also click on the smiley face in the bottom right to view your Sim’s social needs. Click on the Long Term Relationship window at the top of the screen to have an overview on where you stand socially and what you need to do to be on top of your Sim’s social needs.
- Prioritize the Emotional Well-being of your Sims
Just like how emotions have a huge impact on our daily life, so it does in your Sims. Just like the events in our lives can alter how we feel, your Sim’s emotions are also proportionate to the events in their daily lives.
For example, if you let your Sims take a long, steamy shower, they will come out of the bathroom feeling flirty. A brisk shower, on the other hand, will leave them refreshed and energized. Get to know your Sims better and do as much things as you can to put them in a positive emotional state.
- Learning + Developing Skills
Just like with its predecessors, skills are an important factor in The Sims 4. There is a variation when it comes to handling learning skills though. For example, Sims that are older or on their teenage years don’t have any skills at the start but they can quickly acquire those in their daily routines. They may initially cook inedible food; however they can quickly learn how to cook mouth-watering dishes by studying the food that they eat.
This is where the different levels of skills come into play. Let’s take cooking for example. Your Sim may learn to acquire a skill in cooking, but this skill needs to be developed until they reach level 10 or master. What’s good about it is that batch of new options are made available as they level up. Say your Sim has reached level 5 in cooking skill, gourmet cooking skill is unlocked. This new skill is instrumental until your Sim reaches the highest level.
Don’t be fooled. The Sims 4 may look easy, but it’s a complex game that needs more time and practice to master.
Click here to read more tips and information about strategy games.
Video games are not just time-killers.
Most of us play this kind of games because we want to feel the excitement and adventure. We also want to jump into another world where you get to experience living as someone else. If you want to stretch your mind to its limit, strategy games are your best option.
What are the best strategy games out there? We have compiled a list of the top of the crop on this game genre.
- Card Hunter
This browser-based flash game uses a combination of digital collectible card game with a table-top board game. It features Gary as the game master as he guides the players through a tabletop role-playing game, using dungeon modules similar to those of Dungeons & Dragons. In this game, Gary is still on the process of fully learning the ins and outs. At the start of the player’s career, Gary is using the more powerful characters of his older brother Melvin to show the core mechanics of the game. Melvin takes these away at the later stage of the game which would force Gary and the player to start anew.
Though majority of this game is about card play, it’s similar to a board game as well – with blocked vision and terrain that will require you to position your characters well and the success of armor cards and shield are based on visible dice rolls. This results to enhancing your adaptive strategy skill.
It’s fast-paced yet detailed at the same time. You are faced with plenty strategic options and the difficulty rate of this game will require you to start creating different strategies.
- DEFCON: Global Thermonuclear War
This real-time strategy game was created by Introversion Software, an independent British game developer. It’s reminiscent of the “big boards” that visually represented thermonuclear war in films such as Fail-Safe, Dr. Strangelove and especially WarGames.
Players of this game are given a 1980s vector graphics computer-themed world map, and a varied arsenal of conventional and nuclear weaponry. What’s the main objective of the game? You have to destroy as many of your enemies as possible while having as much little of your own population being destroyed. A typical game would have millions of civilian casualties while players are trying to annihilate their opponents.
What makes this DEFCON a great strategy game?
This game is not all about launching nukes at your enemies. You will have a bigger kill count than every other game that you have played combined. Though you can’t help but have a big grin at the end of your winning streaks, you will have millions of casualties under your belt. You need to create an efficient strategic plan to reduce the number of these casualties. After all, won’t you feel guilty if you have taken the lives of million souls?
Making strategic decisions on how to manage your fleet is also critical in this game. Should you send all of your fleets to attack a nearest neighborhood? Or should you allocate them all to defend your territory? Decision-making like these will have a huge impact on the outcome of your game. You just can’t afford making a wrong decision or weak strategic planning.
Click here to know more about this magnificent game.
- Civilization IV
Want to take control of the world either through war or diplomacy?
This award-winning series strategy computer game will let you do exactly like that. This fourth installment of the Civilization series uses the 4X empire-building model. Your main objective is to create your own civilization using very limited initial resources. In order to finish the game, you have to pursue these 5 default objectives: conquering all other civilizations, gaining control of the majority of the game’s population and land, building and sending the first sleeper ship to the Alpha Centauri star system, increasing the “Culture ratings” of at least three different cities to “legendary” levels, or winning a “World Leader” popularity contest by the United Nations.
What sets Civilization IV apart from other games is that there is no single “right” way of playing it. The graphics of this series has been tremendously improved, with everything now in full 3D. Unique animation is equally impressive, so as the attention to small details. If you are a newcomer, you’d be happy to know that a fully comprehensive tutorial is provided.
In this game, it’s critical that you know how you are going to tackle a particular game from the outset. If you’re taking too much time in deciding whether you will go for a conquest victory or scientific course, you will find it very hard to achieve anything at all during the end-game. Civilization IV showcases the very best that the turn-based strategy genre has to offer.
- The Sims 2
The Sims 2 is a 2004 strategic life simulation video game and is a sequel to The Sims. Just like its predecessor, The Sims2 is a simulation to real life where you control the Sims in various of their activities and create relationships with others. Gameplay is open-ended as it does not have a defined final goal.
Just like with real people, Sims have their own fair share of needs and fears as well as life goals. Being able to fulfill these needs will have a positive outcome on your game. All Sims age and has the maximum life expectancy of up to 90 sim days, depending on the degree of how their aspirations are fulfilled.
The Sims 2 is surely addicting. You will most likely develop a relentless obsession with your virtual people, always thinking about their health, relationship, abilities, welfare and even sleep patterns. Sims 2 has now more complex emotions, relationships and needs. Even their appearance looks more lovable too.
No wonder it’s a massive commercial success, with one million copies sold on its first 10 days. It has also received positive reviews from fans and critics alike, having 90% score from aggregators Metacritic and GameRankings.
Don’t let your brain become stagnant. Push your brain to its limits by playing strategy games. Not only you will find massive enjoyment, you would also enhance your analytical and strategic planning skills. Click here to read more about strategy games.
Strategic planning is a crucial element in our everyday life.
We need to have a strategy in everything that we do, even in the simplest activity of riding a subway train. You would need to think of a better method to get on the train fast and get a comfortable spot. Strategic planning is also very important in your professional aspect. You won’t be able to create and present that report if you don’t know how to strategize in the first place.
Now that it’s been established that you can’t get much success in life if you don’t have strategic skills, do you know that you can practice this skill by playing video games? Yes, you heard it right. There are games that have been created to help you create or plan strategies and improve your analytical skills. Read on to know more about strategy video game.
What Are Strategy Video Games?
Strategy video games are a genre of video game that helps you achieve victory by emphasizing on planning and skillful thinking.
One of the most popular goals in this game is to reduce the forces of enemy. To achieve this goal, the player must create a plan of action against one or more opponents. If you want to become victorious, it’s a must that you should have exceptional planning skill. There’s not much of an element of chance or luck in this game, so you have to make sure that every action you make is carefully planned.
In most strategy video games, the player is given a godlike view of the game world and has indirect control game units under their supervision. The element of warfare to varying degree is very common in most strategy games. The game also features a combination of strategic and tactical considerations. Aside from combat, strategy video games challenge your ability to explore or manage an economy.
Though most of the action games require strategic thinking, they are seldom classified as strategy games. The main emphasis on strategy games is your ability to outthink your opponent. They are typically larger in scope and do not involve much physical challenge.
Although they involve tactical, strategic and sometimes logistical challenges, they are far from puzzle games. Puzzle games call for planning in isolation while strategy games call for planning around a conflict between players.
Click here to view all the list of strategy video games.
If you want to trace back where turn-based strategy games started, we have to go as far back as the times of ancient civilizations found in places such as Greece, Rome, the Levant, Egypt and India.
One of the earliest games in this genre is Mancala, a game originated in Samaria approximately 5000 years ago. One form challenges two opposing players to clear their side of a board of mancala pieces while adding them into their opponent’s side and thereby preventing the opponent from clearing their side.
Chess is another game that has stood the test of time. Many believed that chess originated in India around the sixth century CE. It’s a game of tactics and skill which forces the players to think two or three moves ahead of their opponent just to keep up.
Learn more information and tips about other strategy games here.
Do you wish you could play more strategy games? Or do you simply have the dream to become the best strategy player out there. If so, there are 5 games in the strategy category that you simply must play.
1. A galactic adventure with Stellaris
If you are bored with the strategy games that are based on land, then Stellaris is a game you have to play. A different kind of strategy, you battling in the middle of the galaxy, with two game modes: offline and online.
Paradox’s goal was to create a game that is really customizable so that you can plan everything and take matters into your own hands. Besides that the game is a real-time strategy, for the effect of you really being in the moment.
2. The combination of Total war and Warhammer
If you are familiar with strategy games then you must know both Warhammer and Total war games. But what is the thrill of this one? They combined both of them into one amazing game! They took the best features of both games and made an incredibly playable and fun game.
From giving the emphasis on different factions and giving them all different abilities, to leveling-up and customizing your story as you like; they created a game you simply must try
3. Want to be a king
If you want to build your own civilization and create a strong kingdom, then Crusader Kings is for you. As many strategy games you have two games in the franchise. And don’t you stop and think that this is a usual strategy game.
The developers tried hard to make your gameplay as special as it can get, adding different rulers and conflict, the game really needs you to think on how to be the best king out there.
4. The story of the settlers
The Settlers is a game known to have many releases, making each a unique experience for the player. Similar to Age of Empires, the Settlers is a strategy game where you have to create your own civilization, fight for food and resources and battle for the land around you.