Sid Meier's Civilization: Beyond Earth PC

Sid Meier's Civilization: Beyond Earth Image
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81

Generally favorable reviews - based on 78 Critics What's this?

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5.5

Mixed or average reviews- based on 1013 Ratings

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  • Summary: Sid Meier's Civilization: Beyond Earth sends players on an expedition from Earth to lead their people into a new frontier to explore and colonize an alien planet, and create a new civilization.
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 65 out of 78
  2. Negative: 1 out of 78
  1. PC PowerPlay
    Nov 30, 2014
    100
    Beyond Earth is the finest thing that Firaxis has made and a game that we suspect we'll be playing for a long time to come. [Dec 2014, p.52]
  2. Oct 23, 2014
    90
    While the visual and stylistic choices may not prove to be to everyone’s tastes, there is plenty of both new and familiar to satisfy anyone willing to hop on aboard and see where Beyond Earth is able to take you.
  3. Oct 29, 2014
    88
    As first impressions go, Civilization Beyond Earth makes a staggeringly poor one. After a few games -- after you get your head around the affinities and the tech web and the dos and donts of living on an alien planet -- it becomes a gorgeous and engaging, if not revolutionary, 4X game.
  4. Oct 23, 2014
    80
    Civilization: Beyond Earth may seem a bit too familiar for a game supposedly set on a distant planet, but the roving packs of aliens and the new quest system make it an expedition worth embarking on.
  5. Pelit (Finland)
    Nov 15, 2014
    80
    Beyond Earth is a solid turn based strategy game, but playing it feels a bit too much like playing Civilization V. Compared to the classic Alpha Centauri game, Beyond Earth kinda fails to properly sell the feeling of colonizing a strange new world. [Nov 2014]
  6. Oct 24, 2014
    80
    Beyond Earth takes the solid foundation of Civilization to offer a more immersive experience, perhaps the best since Alpha Centauri, if not better.
  7. Oct 25, 2014
    40
    All the decisions I’ve made have snowballed into a massive unwieldy clockwork of inconsequence, lumbering towards an inevitable conclusion like a giant Katamari ball consisting of all those little decisions, none of them steering it in any meaningful way, but each of them lending the monstrosity a tiny bit of mass. Then the ball reaches the requisite mass and a screen tells me I’ve won and I’m back at the main menu. No recap, no score breakdown, no map to admire, no ranking. Poof.

See all 78 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 74 out of 330
  1. Oct 24, 2014
    10
    A great throwback for Alpha Centauri fans!
    The new mechanics and atmosphere really separate it from other Civ titles, and really the themes
    A great throwback for Alpha Centauri fans!
    The new mechanics and atmosphere really separate it from other Civ titles, and really the themes remind me a lot more of Alpha centauri. I feel like if this had come out and Civ 5 was not a thing, it would had been held as revolutionary. I think far too many will group it with Civ 5 for using the same engine. They are two quite different games though. I say this as a long time fan.
    I for one love that they made culture more useful in a game play sense, they made espionage what it use to be back in the old days... Awesome..

    The tech web is probably my favorites system, I have always been a large science player.. The web and technologies they have change everything. I find myself conflicted far more often than in civ, not to mention it can be very situation based. The affinity system is awesome, and I like how it mixes.

    Here is my wishlish for the G&K sized expansion that should be coming

    -More mixed affinity unit upgrades or units, more units for pure routes to compensate.
    additional Planet ecosystem types.
    -A couple more sponsors
    -A scenario with a sentient planet.
    -A few more wonders
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  2. Oct 24, 2014
    8
    Different enough from Civ 5 to not feel like an add-on, but still similar enough to make it feel familiar to Civ gamers. So with that in mindDifferent enough from Civ 5 to not feel like an add-on, but still similar enough to make it feel familiar to Civ gamers. So with that in mind if you like Civ 5 you will probably like this, and if you don't then you probably won't.

    I won't list every change and the things I think are better or worse in this game but here are just a few. And I will be comparing this to both Civ 5 and Alpha Centauri, you have been warned.

    Tech Web feels fun to explore. In Civ 5 by the end you had everything, all the techs fell in to place. In Beyond they don't. You have to make hard choices about what tech you want and what you don't. I feel this gave more flavour to my civilisation.

    Alien Life Forms are and aren't barbarians at the same time. In Civ 5 Barbarians were an aggressive annoyance, they turned up and tried to kidnap your workers and wreck your tile improvements. In Beyond the aliens are the dominant species, you are the aggressive annoyance turning up trying to steal the resources from their nests. And how you treat these native inhabitants determines if they decide to try and crush you out of existence.

    Units I felt were a bit weak in terms of their variety. I knew that I wasn't going to get an Alpha Centauri level of customising but I still feel more could have been done.

    Quests are enjoyable as they give some sense of your civilisation making decisions and shaping the way it wants to be. However sometimes I felt that these decisions came a little to often.

    Apart from that, Virtues are the new Social policies, Affinities are the new ideology, and the orbital layer works a bit like great people providing buffs to whole areas or temporary enhancements.

    Overall I am loving this game, it's not perfect, but I am sure I will once again sink hundreds of hours in to a Civilization game.
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  3. Oct 29, 2014
    7
    Disappointing, but still good.

    I've played a lot of Sid Meier over the years and love 4x games. Recently however, the games have been
    Disappointing, but still good.

    I've played a lot of Sid Meier over the years and love 4x games. Recently however, the games have been extremely lackluster before their expansions. First I'd like to address the ridiculous point that it's "just" a Civ 5 expansion. Yes, it uses the same engine, so looks and plays in a fairly similar fashion. The amount of difference in just about every concept of the game make it much more than an expansion though. New terrain features, new tech tree, new unit upgrade system, quest system, new barbarian ai, no natural wonders, orbital layer, and so on.

    -The good

    -The new tech web means you can't just dominate scientifically and collect all the wonders, coasting to an easy culture victory.
    -The quest system gives you constant mini-objectives which help new players learn without a long tutorial and provide nice little boosts for more experienced players to take advantage of.
    -Trading is quite a bit more meaningful, particularly between your own and independent cities(stations)
    -Aliens are a serious menace to expansion early on as opposed to the slight irritation barbarians were.
    -Explorers are useful, in place of natural wonders are excavation sites which can yield some great bonuses
    -It's fun. The choices you make are all small at the time, but have a huge effect on your late game. Particularly after building a new building. Some of them are pointless as one is obviously better, but most are well balanced.

    -The bad

    -AI is about the same as Civ 5, no real improvement
    -Units are set, AC fans will be disappointed they can't customise their units the way they wish.
    -Unit upgrades are forced upon you, if you reach level 4 in Unity, but want to give your unit the level 12 supremacy upgrade, you can't, you have to reach level 12 in supremacy first.
    -Lack of diplomacy options. Sometimes you'll be trading with a station and the AI will swoop in and destroy it, harming your economy. There's no way you can tell them to stop, the only solution is to declare war and destroy their units
    -Way too easy. The 3 affinity victory conditions are far to simple to pull off, you just research a small enough amount of tech and build something next to your capital and not lose for a few turns and you'll win. You can disable these, but then you are left with domination as the only recourse (I don't think having all the remaining players as allies even counts as a win).
    -Too much impassible terrain. On every setting, there seems to be a large portion of the map covered in mountains or chasms which are largely impassable.
    -Aliens rule the seas. Your ships always suck at melee battles and the aliens excel in it. They also seem to ignore the AI and focus every alien on the planet on your ships or troop transports.
    -It could have much more character. The techs and factions never seem to be all that different. The changes according to their affinity choices are quite subtle and when ever you research a new tech or build a wonder it doesn't have the little description, quote and/or video that made Alpha Centauri such a rewarding game to play.

    It's a fun game in and of itself, but fails to live up to its predecessors. I've sunk a good few hours into it already and enjoyed them immensely. Though I think it works better on marathon mode as opposed to quick or standard.
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  4. Oct 27, 2014
    5
    I'm giving this a 5/10 for now because it just does too many things wrong. Actually, the only positive change is the tech web - that isI'm giving this a 5/10 for now because it just does too many things wrong. Actually, the only positive change is the tech web - that is interesting and works well. But everything else is such a mess, from the civs barely being any different (tiny bonuses are all the variation you'll get), to leaders having no personalities to there being no victory/loss screen and many other issues, this game is just not good right now and I'd strongly suggest playing a modded Civ V with both DLCs over this for now. Expand
  5. Nov 7, 2014
    4
    I should start this review by saying that I love Civilization and I have played all games in the series since Civilization II. Although theI should start this review by saying that I love Civilization and I have played all games in the series since Civilization II. Although the vanilla version of Civilization V was rough, I loved that release as well - one unit per hex combat, new graphics and leaders full of character were refreshing enough to bear with the game until the expansions made it truly great (especially Gods & Kings). I believe Beyond Earth is somewhere at the stage where Civilization V was at the release gameplay-wise (much to be improved, but can be easily achievable with expansions and patches). At the core design level however, affinities (affinity decides the way you play the game - it is a philosophy deciding your path of progress and victory) have been separated from leaders and that is something that took all character from the game away. The leaders and writing are generic and dull, lacking any emotional connection known from previous games. Moreover, I believe this core flaw cannot be fixed unless many more affinities were introduced and linked to leaders somehow which I simply cannot see happening at all. The result is a bland game, with potential for growth mechanically, but lacking character and because of design decisions simply not capable of getting anywhere near the legendary status of Alpha Centauri, of which the game is supposed to be a the spiritual successor. I hope I am wrong and the designers will find a way of making this game alive but right now it is a pretty space game, with marvelous music, unpolished gameplay that will be fixed in expansions and zero character. Not worth £30 and not a must play. I'll wait for the expansions and I regret not buying it on sale. I guess most people buying this game wanted another Alpha Centauri and this is not it and probably never will. Even comparing to Civ5 with expansions, already cheaper bundle, this game simply cannot stand its own and such comparison is inevitable when the engine is basically the same and the game plays like a glorified mod. Expand
  6. Jan 20, 2015
    3
    C:BE is a difficult game to review negatively when played only for a short period of time. At first glance, you are offered a new CivilizationC:BE is a difficult game to review negatively when played only for a short period of time. At first glance, you are offered a new Civilization game with a completely overhauled tech tree, new units, new surroundings and a new setting. It holds promise until you have finished a couple of games and realize the truth behind this Civilization V reskin.

    Did I just say 'Civ V reskin'? Indeed. Every resource has been converted into a seemingly different, yet extremely similar mechanic. Gold has become Energy, for example, and Happiness has been changed to 'Health'. Sensible choices for the setting the game is in, but these design choices make C:BE feel, play and look like a reskin. The game is not helped either by the minimalistic UI and the complete lack of backstory or CGI movies, every pop up feels like a glorified text box with little flair or soul to it.

    The above is especially disturbing when you consider this is a 4X developed by Firaxis, a company that released a game such as Alpha Centauri. There are loads upon loads of hidden references to that game, but not one single moment does C:BE aspire to that level of greatness, polish or immersion.

    Every faction in the game feels like a lifeless husk dropped onto an alien planet with an odd and surreal backstory, supported by what is supposed to be the backbone of the game: Affinities. It is through this mechanic that you progress to stronger units with more unique abilities. Affinities can be combined, mixed and matched in any way the player sees fit; another example of a game mechanic that just hasn't really been fleshed out and thought over critically, because it results in every game becoming an 'affinity race' and having access to more than one at high level is always a huge advantage. End result? Every game is exactly the same: you rush a few cities, a few starting techs to boost production or fill the blanks in your economy, and the affinity race starts. Early game units are nowhere near strong enough to rush enemy cities or really make a lasting difference, since the alien population will most likely destroy those attempts completely, while becoming utterly worthless and underpowered once you obtain the first Affinity-based unit. Oh, and don't even think those aliens will ever be an issue, or the planet will ever be a threat to your growth and prosperity. There IS no threat in C:BE. There is only the 'next turn' button, which you will find yourself clicking like a madman to finish that affinity race and finish the game.

    C:BE misses the mark completely as an enticing, deep or challenging 4X. It looks nice, sounds good, and that about sums it all up. All the rest feels like an incomplete shell of rehashed Civ V mechanics that lack in every respect.

    My two cents: avoid like the plague, maybe revisit after it has been expanded and properly fleshed out. C:BE is a shameless copy of tried and tested concepts with a price tag of a whole new game, which it is clearly not. There are dozens of 4X games that do literally every single thing a lót better.
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  7. Jun 28, 2015
    0
    So from now on, after playing this one and Civilization V, I will consider Sid Meier's and their new games as . very good example of moneySo from now on, after playing this one and Civilization V, I will consider Sid Meier's and their new games as . very good example of money leeches (like a lot of other videogaming companies). They give up any attempt to make a good deep game.They're recycling any good idea they had in the past and they are doing it wrong they are killing the very essence of Sid Meiers. only after the money now. Huge dissapointment.

    Instead you should save your bucks and play again Alpha Centaury or Civilization II.
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See all 330 User Reviews