Generally favorable reviews - based on 32 Critics What's this?

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Mixed or average reviews- based on 81 Ratings

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  • Summary: In Colonization, players lead one of four European nations on a quest to conquer and rule the New World. Players are challenged to guide their people from the oppressive motherland, discover the New World, and negotiate, trade and fight with both the natives and other nations as they acquire power and fight for freedom and independence. As a complete reimagining of the 1994 classic, Colonization is a total conversion of Civilization IV that combines Civilization's addictive "just one more turn" gameplay with all-new graphics and features that add more depth to the franchise. New features include brand-new interface, improved diplomacy options and the included modding tools. Colonization does not require the original Civilization IV product in order to be played. [2K Games] Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 28 out of 32
  2. Negative: 0 out of 32
  1. 100
    What really makes Colonization a classic turn-based game is the amount of distinct character. This isn't just a Civ 4 mod; it's its own beast, with its own rules and its own sense of charm and history, carved out of a New World brimming with native settlements, tobacco, and furs, waiting for your people -- people, mind you! -- to conquer it, plunder it, and/or cultivate it.
  2. Not quite as awesomely mindblowingly epic as "Civ IV," but it's not far off. [Dec 2008, p.78]
  3. Colonization is exactly my type of turn-based strategy. I don’t miss the tech trees, and love the focus on economics and trade.
  4. If you don't know the original game from 1994, you should play at the easiest level to understand the complex economy. There are three other nations competing with you to colonize the New World, the native Indians and, last but not least, the King of your nation in the Old World. The Independence War is one of the most entertaining ways to end a campaign ever seen in this genre. The game may not be perfect, but it's a motivating and challenging strategy game.
  5. 80
    While it's unlikely to convert anyone who can't see the fun in slowly nudging swarms of candy-coated numbers in positive directions, Colonization is a great addition to the Civ IV stable. And who needs sleep anyway?
  6. 80
    Colonization adds a great layer onto the Civilization IV gameplay. If you like Civ-style games but also enjoy the trading and exploring aspects of games like Pirates! or, erm, Pirates of the Burning Sea, this is a game for you. However, if your strategic tendencies lean more toward building large armies than building thriving economies, just keep on sailing past this one.
  7. 50
    This game may be cheap but it often feels even cheaper. It's not just the simplistic mechanics at work but the rough edges which begin to cut once the initial lubrications of happiness at replaying a classic title have worn away. From icons that shift slots on the UI to redundant information screens being favored over the existence of useful ones, Colonization 2008 feels more like an intern project than a game that should be sold to the public.

See all 32 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 14 out of 27
  2. Negative: 7 out of 27
  1. Jun 7, 2013
    I don't really understand all the negative criticism, because I for one love this game. I purchased Colonization about a year ago and then decided a few months later to purchase Civ IV: The Complete Edition, and I actually enjoy Colonization more. Everyone has their own opinions and I respect that, but don't flame a game just because you don't like it or it didn't meet your expectations. This is a super fun game with lots of replay value. Great job Sid! 10/10. Expand
  2. Nov 20, 2012
    I was a big fan of the original Colonization, and this remake did not disappoint. It's based on the same engine as Civ IV, so definitely a graphics upgrade. The gameplay is similar, perhaps not quite as deep as the original Colonization in some areas, but better in others. Overall, if you liked the original, get this version for sure. If you never played the original, your in for a treat with this. Expand
  3. Jan 9, 2013
    I'm a fan of the Civ franchise, so I bought the Civ IV game with all the expansions. I really like this one because it lets me focus on one era and I always wanted to stay in the same time period. I don't have to worry about science upgrades, that way, I know that the other guys have the same stuff as I do. The only reason I didn't give it a higher score is because I bought it on steam and it doesn't have a manual and the tutorial is basically pop up that happen as you figure stuff out. No really a walkthrough. Sure it's not a perfect game and the king can be annoying, but it's not hard and can be a little educational. I noticed some people found some stuff about the game that I think is a little over analytical for a game, but some people like to nit pick over everything. Overall I would recommend it if you didn't buy the complete package like I did. Expand
  4. JasonB.
    Sep 24, 2008
    Certainly a departure from the Civ IV franchise. The graphics have improved somewhat (the water most of all). But there's a steep learning curve from starting out the game. When I played my first game, I didn't know what the hell I was doing. After a couple of games, I finally realized I had to import all the specialists I needed to actually get my colony to thrive. But the game makes it extraordinarily difficult since cities expand really, really slowly and their influence never increases (so far as I've seen). So the hardest part is trying to find a colony that's a good balance between food production (which is essential to getting new citizens and maintaining a colony) and goods production (which gets you the essential money you need to buy specialists and pay those pesky tributes to the King). I was also disappointed that you couldn't be any of the native civilizations, you only can choose between four European nations. All in all, things take forever to get going, but once they do, the game starts to gain a little steam. I have yet to figure out how to produce military units yet, but I'm sure that'll come soon. If you're looking for a really difficult challenge and a complete departure from the Civ IV experience, then Colonization is your game. If you're looking for something familiar, you're going to be disappointed. Expand
  5. BillH.
    Oct 5, 2008
    This game has critical design errors in gameplay mechanics and many half-finished features. It's hard for me to say it's a product of laziness on the part of Firaxis as they have clearly upped the ante of the graphics for the Civ IV engine, however, it seems like that was their main focus, as they then failed to smooth out too many rough edges to make it worth mentioning in this review. I've played it through to victory for over a week straight, something in the neighborhood of 92 hours. My feeling is that they screwed up many gameplay aspects that needed to be updated to such an extent that it would've been better to leave it the way it was in 1993. It's great first, but as you continue playing and realise the many many small problems add up to a deeply flawed game, you find yourself cursing Sid Meier for sucking at the tit of another incomplete cash cow. My hope is they patch many of the problems as they did with Civ IV, but I'm not holding my breath on it. Another running problem I have with the Civ games is they have removed the capacity of Artillery/Cannon to bombard units and cities in the realistic fashion present in Civ II-thru-III. This is just a personal pet peeve and would've been forgivable if it were not simply one more problem in a sea of problems with this game's design, but I really do wish game developer's could get their head's wrapped around how you use Arty and why you would want it in the first place, rather than making it into an infantry unit that charges the front lines. Expand
  6. PedroD.
    Oct 5, 2008
    Is it too much to expect that 'some' changes be made to a classic game to evolve it into 2008 standards. I loved the classic version and to be honest there's not much different, the graphics are nice but the trading system and ai i think have moved backward. This got about 30 mins of excitement and by now I'm ready to give up. Expand
  7. ehtehtG
    Nov 11, 2009
    the original civ 4 was an amazing step up from civ 3, and the other expansions added a lot of cool new features, and then came colonization. They introduced a completely new gameplay with no tutorial! I don't know what made them think that was smart at all. I know it's called an expansion, but this was an implosion. from over 30 civs down to 4 playable Sid Meier. And as far as I can tell they also scratched the concept of technology from the game already sucks, but wait there's more! There are even less turns then in the previous games. You can no longer travel the entire world, instead now the border of the map is "europe". And if europe attacks you, guess what, you can't do anything but fight them off and let more come because they aren't a destroyable civ. That's ok though because if you let them be your allie they suck the llife out of you in gold, and nobody else has to deal with it. There even less types of tiles!!!! There is only one type of ocean, and even less resources, and less terrianes...why....? Also the scenarios are all real places, but since they take up only parts of America now, the concept of seperate continents is gone now, so it's possible to meet every AI from the start.....great, but wait it's not so bad because there are only 3 other civs....genius. The only good things about this game are the very slightly improved graphics (oh joy) and the fact that the barbarians aren't always at war with you and have trading capabilities (the 1 actual good thing worth shit). On top of everything I perfer starting from ancient times, but that's just me. So, overall they butchered the game down in every gameplay view, and tried to make up for it with graphics, because graphics make the game sooooo much better (-.-). I think sid was high while making this because this could have been a decent game had he not taken out every last feature possible, but even then I still wouldn't like it because I like Civilization, not Colonization. Above all though a tutorial at least would have made my vote a 1 not a 0, but no Sid had to be high while making this. Expand

See all 27 User Reviews