Sid Meier's Civilization IV PC


Universal acclaim - based on 50 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 50 out of 50
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 50
  3. Negative: 0 out of 50
Buy On
  1. 100
    A game with this much depth, this much strategy, this much replayability, and multiplayer is totally unheard of in this space. Civilization IV stands alone. No fan of strategy games should leave this on store shelves.
  2. The graphics are solid and sharply focused, while the cities that used to expand all too predictably now take on more organic growth patterns that spread to encompass land between cities more naturally.
  3. It is infinitely replayable, incredibly balanced and faster-paced. Combat has been improved, with the addition of both depth and simplicity, while peacemaking and cultural supremacy are more viable options.
  4. An incredibly addicting, engrossing, and incredibly well-designed inclusion. No stone was left unturned as the developers crafted this masterpiece and if you’re a fan of the previous installments of this game, you’re definitely going to enjoy this latest edition.
  5. Computer Games Magazine
    This is easily the best version of Civilization ever made. [Jan 2006, p.52]
  6. 100
    Civ IV isn’t quite light enough to captivate all gamers, but it is the most fun, most engaging, and most entertaining of the series.
  7. Civilization IV has a ridiculous amount of strategic elements packed into it.
  8. 100
    This really is strategy gaming at its very best and you'd be doing yourself a disservice if you skipped it. It's that good.
  9. A streamlined interface, a non-linear tech tree, impressive AI with 18 personalities, a new combat system (no more spearmen defeating tanks), amazing multiplayer features and narration by Star Trek's Leonard Nimoy all give the new Civ plenty of both flash and substance.
  10. The absolute best thing about Civilization IV is that previous experience with the series (or strategy games for that matter) isn’t necessary.
  11. Firaxis have, without a shadow of a doubt, created a monster hit. Civilization IV will stand head and shoulders above all other turn based strategy games.
  12. Not just the best game in the series–which says a lot on its own–but it’s also one of, if not the very best strategy games ever made.
  13. 96
    Firaxis have managed to thoroughly overhaul one of the classic games of all time and drag it up from its dark ages into the renaissance era. Even with its speedier gameplay Civ IV will be the cause of many sleepless nights and damaged relationships.
  14. Hands-down the best turn-based strategy game of the year. It is emotionally satisfying and addictive.
  15. Refreshes the Civ series and offers a great experience for newcomers to the series as well as seasoned veterans. It is immensely fun whether you play multi- or single-player.
  16. It’s hard to describe every facet of Civ IV’s gameplay without writing an epic, but suffice it to say, this is everything Civilization fans could hope for.
  17. The grandmaster series of strategy gaming spawns another game for the ages.
  18. Game Informer
    The added level of control that the Civics system gives you is an incredibly useful tool for managing your civilization. [Jan 2006, p.152]
  19. 95
    If you’re a Civ fan this game is a must, if you’re a fan of strategy games this also is a must.
  20. A virtual guarantee to keep you up into the wee hours, playing "just one more turn..." Flaws aside, any game that makes me see the sun come up is a great one.
  21. 94
    While the game hasn't lost any depth or detail, every aspect of the design has been streamlined to make it easier for new players to jump in and less monotonous for veterans. Die-hard fans will definitely find that the game offers up so much more variety this time around.
  22. Fundamentally, this is a much-improved version of the same Civ games we've all been playing and desperately trying to put down for years. And that's far from a bad thing. In fact, it's an awesome thing.
  23. PC Gamer
    One of the most compulsively playable strategy games of all time. [Jan 2005, p.72]
  24. One of the best games I've played this year - a true labor of love; perfectly scalable difficulty levels, great AI, in addition to all of the abovementioned improvements. A definite must buy.
  25. A great game and a fresh, new experience. Just about every single problem from previous titles, especially the lackluster "Civ III," has been adjusted or outright replaced. Whether it’s the endless city spamming, the lack of good multiplayer, or the AI cheating in obnoxious ways, it’s been addressed in Civilization IV.
  26. Pelit (Finland)
    No more micromanagement, diplomacy is finally easy to understand and combat is more rational than ever before. The graphics for camouflage units and advisors seem to be only half-finished, but it is still the best Civilization ever. [Dec 2005]
  27. It doesn’t revolutionize the series but the series is hardly is need of such a change.
  28. An incredibly fun and addictive addition to the Civilization franchise. Civilization IV brings back everything that makes this series great, and adds enough innovation to keep things fresh and approachable for both veteran and newcomer.
  29. The game is large and complex but all the elements interact with each other with such cohesiveness and fluidity.
  30. Civilization IV is exactly the sequel that fans of the series could have hoped for. This game is all about bringing more to the franchise.
  31. It's the best strategy game released this year, and if you don't like it, there's something wrong with you.
  32. Between the multitude of challenges that players must overcome in the single player campaign, the mods that can be made and played with the included World Builder and the ever-changing multiplayer scene, we’re happy to say that Civilization IV should hold the attention of the strategy gamer for months to come.
  33. Now, however, it's been nailed: simultaneous turns, variable game speeds, the ability to join a game on the hop by taking over an AI opponent and game dynamics that leave you despising your best friend. Quite frankly, you needn't buy another game for the entirety of next year - Civ will suffice, and it gets deeper each time you play. [PC Zone]
  34. PC Format
    It's the best strategy game released this year, and if you don't like it, there's something wrong with you. [Dec 2005 p.87]
  35. A rock solid game, both on a technical and design level (it is advisable however to install the v1.09 patch, which eliminates some video and memory leak problems).
  36. Civ IV is definitely one of the best strategy games of all times. Following three other classics in the series it has a great pedigree and manages to uphold the tradition of great gaming set forth by its predecessors.
  37. From start to finish this is a terrific, addictive, deep, rewarding turn-based affair. Its new engine and revamped multiplayer breathe new life into an old standby, leading to another winner for Sid.
  38. 90
    Firaxis shows an impressively consistent grasp of what to abstract and what to detail, and a remarkable talent for presenting large-scale strategic challenges in a format that's easy to digest.
  39. 90
    From the mellow sounds of Leonard Nimoy's narration to the polished world view that allows you to smoothly scroll from satellite view to up-close and personal, this is the consummate update of a classic.
  40. It’s good. Damn good. In fact, I’ll certainly go as far as saying it’s the best pure strategy game I’ve played this year, and that’s good enough for me.
  41. If you harbor any interest in strategy games and want something with more depth than the average mindless RTS, then you would do well to immerse yourself in Civilization IV and let it soak in.
  42. If you enjoy this game then the replay value for you is nearly endless.
  43. Civilzation delivers all the gameplay that fans expect from the series, although some of the more subtle details from previous games have been scaled down.
  44. AceGamez
    The game sticks to its roots but has dropped the dead leaves and found some new flowers to make a big enough change for it to be inviting to both newcomers and long-time fans of the series.
  45. 90
    There are still some strange sticking points--buried icons or inexplicable quirks--that leave room for improvement, and a more complete tutorial would also be helpful. But in the end, this is the tightest Civ yet.
  46. Yet another smash hit for Sid Meier and crew, combining deep elements of strategy, with improved graphics, and a stellar soundtrack. Anyone even remotely interested in history, turn-based gaming or anyone who even owns a PC should check this excellent title out.
  47. Highly enjoyable and infinitely replayable. It is easily the best game that I’ve played this year.
  48. A superbly detailed labour of love. The game really benefits from over 10 years of development, and is smooth and polished.
  49. games(TM)
    Even though stellar work has gone into making the game as accessible as possible, there's no escaping the fact that Civilization games are for Civilization fans. And fans won't be dissapointed with Civilization IV. [Dec 2005, p.96]
  50. The new interface may throw a few of the more institutionalised players off the scent, but it won’t be long before they settle down for another few years.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 906 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 42 out of 184
  1. MorganC.
    Mar 30, 2006
    This is, quite literally, the best game I've ever played. Will keep you hooked for hours on end.
  2. JimBo
    Jan 12, 2010
    Yup, great graphics and cool new stuff. But I can't care about all this anymore after some hours of gameplay of Civ4, while I could Yup, great graphics and cool new stuff. But I can't care about all this anymore after some hours of gameplay of Civ4, while I could spend days playing 3. Can't get hooked by all these new features because the game loses its power to immerse the player. Why? Diplomacy useless through centuries. No future: Once the map is covered into borders, change stops happening. You need long and boring wars to conquer territories that low culture won't allow to use before eons... So when taking a first "row" of cities, you need to destroy the next row in order to make your first ones' grow. The system seeks to prevent you from doing daring conquests. Then the only best option is tech race, while you resist a few defensive wars, and while your workers just stand for centuries on a territory all covered by roads and improvements (which also happened in Civ3, but late), waiting for a new tech that'll let them improve a tile or two. To sum up: fine innovations worth the try, not addictive at all once the learning curve has been climbed. Still, I'll be the first to buy Civ5... Full Review »
  3. Oct 2, 2010
    If you do not want to lose hours of your day without noticing... DO NOT get this game, but if you don't mind playing marathon sessions andIf you do not want to lose hours of your day without noticing... DO NOT get this game, but if you don't mind playing marathon sessions and being totally obsessed with conquering the world then this is the right game for you! Full Review »