Mark your calendar for February 8th, 2018, Civilization 6 fans! Firaxis has just announced the first DLC and it appears to be jam-packed with new features. In a news post Anton Strenger, the DLC’s Lead Designer, introduces us to Civilization 6: Rise and Fall. A lovely summary trailer of the new features has also been included.
Golden, Dark, and Heroic Ages
One of the main new features in Civilization 6: Rise and Fall is the system of Ages. While Golden Ages have been part of the Civilization franchise for a while, they were never more than a very brief boost in productivity. Rise and Fall expands this system and introduces the idea of Dark Ages.
Having a Golden Age affords huge bonuses to Loyalty and other game systems, but makes earning future Golden Ages slightly more difficult.
Having a Dark Age hurts Loyalty in your cities and makes you vulnerable, but gives you an opportunity to earn a future Golden Age more easily. It also allows the use of special Dark Age policies and opens the door for an even more powerful Heroic Age.
The aim behind these new Ages is to add an additional element of challenge and variety to the series. Many times a play-through becomes stale and linear, where the only progression is controlled by the research tree and a civilization’s technological advances. The introduction of Ages should provide more ups and downs and a generally more interesting experience.
Alongside the inevitable swings provided by the Ages, comes the new concept of Loyalty. It is now no longer good enough to keep citizens fed and productive, as cities will develop their own independent Loyalties towards you. At an extreme, this means that a city may choose to leave your civilization if Loyalty is reduced enough. On the flip side, even an opposing player’s city may decide to switch sides and join you, if there is enough of an incentive for them.
In previous Civilization games, there were ways to “Culture Flip” another player’s city without military intervention. We felt it was time to reexamine this non-militaristic way to change borders, and expand territory.
Not only will the Loyalty system offer new challenges, but it may also offer alternative paths to victory. To support this new system, the concept of Governors has been added.
In the past, installing a Governor in a city meant giving it autonomy and being able to focus your attention elsewhere. In Rise and Fall, you will have the opportunity to send up to seven Governors to those cities or areas of your empire that require special attention.
As for the Governors themselves, they have unique personalities – even before you start choosing which ones to upgrade. Some thrive in taking an already established city to the next level, building Wonders and powering up trade routes. Others are more suited to new cities that are constructing their first districts and claiming their first bits of land.
Governors are earned and upgraded by earning Governor Titles through gameplay. They just become a standard part of the game’s progression, not unlike Great People, though with a longer lasting impact on the game.
Enhanced Alliances and Emergencies
Playing Civilization 6 with a group of friends adds a whole new strategic element to the game. In order to expand upon this, and to bring some of that feeling to the single-player game, Alliances are getting an overhaul in Rise and Fall. Alliances are now categorized into special types: Research, Military, Economic, Cultural, and Religious.
Let me give you an example of how an Alliance can evolve over time, specifically a Research Alliance. At Level 1, both allies receive Science bonuses to their Trade Routes. But as the Alliance develops, powerful and unique effects come into play. At Level 2, both allies still receive their Science bonuses, but also receive 1 Tech Boost at a regular interval. Level 3 is all of the above, plus bonus Science when researching the same Technology, or a Technology your ally had already researched.
These Alliances will come in handy when another new feature comes into play: Emergencies. These events are designed to provide a sort of checks-and-balances and often occur when one player gains a particularly large lead in one of the victory conditions.
When triggered, the game determines which other players can join in an Emergency against the target and each player can choose to join or pass. Joining can give permanent benefits, but only if the players are able to complete an Emergency-specific objective against the target in time, otherwise the target gets a benefit instead.
Historic Moments and New Leaders
Historic Moments are a new concept that will help you retell your civilization’s story. Over 100 of these mini achievements will be included in Rise and Fall and each time you unlock one, it will be recorded. Achieving them will also help raise your Era Score, which is used to attain Golden Ages.
And who better to achieve these new Historic Moments with than some new Civilizations and Leaders? Firaxis say they have nine new leaders and eight new civilizations ready for Rise and Fall, but they haven’t shared them yet.
We’ll keep an eye open for the upcoming announcements, so be sure to check back soon!