Sid Meier's Civilization IV PC

User Score
8.3

Generally favorable reviews- based on 947 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 88 out of 947
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  1. Jun 4, 2011
    9
    Great game. Other than some issues with the ATI card I had at the time, I've thoroughly enjoyed this game. Definitely the high water mark of the series.
  2. Sep 1, 2011
    10
    Awesome game. One of the best Civs. If your trying to decide between this one and Civ 5 get this one Civ 5's a dumbed down peace of **** Also Ian277 is a retard.
  3. Jun 30, 2012
    8
    Strategy gaming at it's finest. People may argue that the graphical development has taken precedence over gameplay in Civ 4 (the culture system a bit hit and miss, and the end game can end up a bit of a quagmire) but for me the game play is still exceptionally addictive.

    If you enjoy games that make you think before you act, Civ 4 is for you.
  4. JasonL.
    Jan 7, 2006
    9
    This game is so much better than Civ III. They have left out all the tedious micro-management and enhanced the areas which make it more fun. Obviously they have listened to players gripes and recommendations and produced a work of art. Fantastic.
  5. Jul 6, 2012
    10
    Review includes both expansion packs. This and Master of Orion 2 are the best 2 strategy games I have ever played and everything else I compare to them.
  6. Dec 22, 2011
    9
    A revolutionary game for its time, Civ IV is still good nearly 7 years later. By far a better game than Civ V, IV is complex and engaging with more to learn every time you play. If you buy this game, there is a strong chance you will become obsessed and spend hours on end playing. So long as you have the time, Civ IV is much more worthwhile than many of the newer, more expensive games out now.
  7. Aug 31, 2011
    9
    One of the best strategy games ever. The realistic and a little complex gameplay makes this game a masterpiece. The music is awesome, the graphics is acceptable and it has a great technology tree as well. I only don't like the limited rounds.
  8. Jun 27, 2013
    9
    I can't say I really enjoy strategy games that much. Admittedly, I usually pick them up, and get bored of them really fast. However, I still play them anyway because despite how bored I get of them, I can often see where people who love this genre to death would love these games. That was the case with this game. While I got bored of it and hopped right back into Skyrim, I can totallyI can't say I really enjoy strategy games that much. Admittedly, I usually pick them up, and get bored of them really fast. However, I still play them anyway because despite how bored I get of them, I can often see where people who love this genre to death would love these games. That was the case with this game. While I got bored of it and hopped right back into Skyrim, I can totally see where strategy gaming fans will love this game. It truly is a fantastic game. It takes turn-based strategy to whole new levels. There is no real story to this game, however, it does not even need one. The story is really your own. You get to choose your own famous civilization, and set out to conquer the world through one of six victory conditions. You start out in ancient times with only one warrior and settler in most games. However, you will soon progress further to make giant civilizations that will span across the globe. The graphics and sound are also quite good. There is not a lot of detail in the graphics, however, there does not need to be any detail. The graphics are fine just the way they are. You can easily distinguish how everything looks in this game, so detail is not needed. Everything sounds just the way it should too. The game has a beautiful soundtrack, and the units also sound good. The gameplay is also very good. The game works perfectly as a turn-based strategy game. You make your decisions in turns, so you and your opponents (other civilizations) will each get a fair fight as if it were a more complicated game of chess. However, that's not to say the game is too complicated. The truth is, while this game is very advanced, it is simple at the same time. If you are unsure of what to do in the game, you can just set the difficulty level to its lowest setting, and the game will give you help by recommending certain options over others. It's one of those games that is easy to learn, but hard to master. That is probably the best thing about this game's gameplay. However, there is much more to it than that. The decisions you make can positively or negatively effect your civilization over time, and there is an almost limitless amount of decisions you can make in this game. You can form an alliance with other civilizations in hopes of having a peaceful victory in the end, or you can go to war with them to achieve a conquest victory. You can choose which technology your civilization should advance in, what landmarks it should have, what religions it should practice, and much much more. Believe it or not, there is even more to the gameplay than this. The game is also loaded with extra features. It has an encyclopedia, telling about every unit in the game, along with the history of every civilization (and yes, the history is 100% accurate). This makes the game a nice little history lesson. There are also several mods included with the game that change the way the game is played. There are some mods that follow history, such as mods that are made to completely recreate it, or a specific part of it such as World War II. There are also mods that tell a completely different story, such as a war going on between Russians, and mods that have absolutely nothing to do with history, and instead focus on a kind of fantasy. These mods included really change the game for the better. Overall, despite how bored I get of this game, it really is fantastic. I believe that every strategy gamer will love this game, and it is well deserving of a 9 out of 10. Expand
  9. Dec 28, 2012
    9
    This is a really decent game. I've "only" played civilization 1, 4, and 5 and 1 and 4 were my best experiences. This isn't a review for the other civs, so I will try to limit it to this one. The graphics look better than the screenshots suggest so don't let something like that deter you. What makes this game and civ 1 so great is the level of complexity that goes into your relationshipsThis is a really decent game. I've "only" played civilization 1, 4, and 5 and 1 and 4 were my best experiences. This isn't a review for the other civs, so I will try to limit it to this one. The graphics look better than the screenshots suggest so don't let something like that deter you. What makes this game and civ 1 so great is the level of complexity that goes into your relationships with other countries and your many choices to make during the course of gameplay. Most things you don't like you can turn off. There are only 2 things that bring this game down from a perfect score for me.

    First, is the %'s that the game tells you that you have of winning a fight. It will say something like 98.9% chance for victory... and you lose more like 1/3 of the time. This makes combat a bit frustrating - you never really know your odds of victory and what you resort to doing is saving before a fight so that you don't have to rely on luck to win. If these percentages were accurate I might choose to live with the consequences, but they aren't.

    The other downside and perhaps one that is merely opinion - but I feel enough people agree that it's worth mentioning anyway... is that the game is difficult. I play on the lowest difficulty settings and without feeling like a total wimp (for example giving myself more allies than the enemy has) I usually don't win. I don't play with barbarians anymore, but when I did having them around made the game MUCH more difficult. You can turn them off but it's something to be aware of.

    The first flaw is the only one that feels like a major pain though.. win or lose I still have quite a bit of fun playing.
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  10. Oct 1, 2012
    10
    Actually the best installment of the series. With improvements over earlier titles and not being dumbed down as V, it stands solid and on the pedestal of strategic gaming. Better graphics, improved diplomacy, governments and religion, strategic resources plus goodies... And modding. Such power of modding that has never been seen before in Civilization series. I have honestly played thisActually the best installment of the series. With improvements over earlier titles and not being dumbed down as V, it stands solid and on the pedestal of strategic gaming. Better graphics, improved diplomacy, governments and religion, strategic resources plus goodies... And modding. Such power of modding that has never been seen before in Civilization series. I have honestly played this game for so many hours, and tried so many mods that I can't give it less than a perfect score. It would be unjust. Expand
  11. Nov 29, 2012
    9
    The best turn based strategy ever (in my opinion), better even than any of the empire earth games! A great game that keeps me entertained to this day.
  12. Apr 4, 2014
    10
    The Sid Meier's Civilization series is a classic, hooking you with strategy that will keep you on the edge of your seat.

    There are many civilizations to choose from that are historically accurate.
    Many combinations of settings allow you to get a unique experience from the game every time.
  13. BalazsC.
    Jul 7, 2008
    10
    Civ 1 was a revolutionary game. Civ 2 was a worthy successor. Civ 3 was well.. a step into a new direction. This game however. This game gives you the greatness of civ 1, the streamlined feeling you had in civ 2 and if that wouldn't be enough, civ 4 manages to do the impossible and takes the game even further. The only real negative i could mention in regards of this game is the Civ 1 was a revolutionary game. Civ 2 was a worthy successor. Civ 3 was well.. a step into a new direction. This game however. This game gives you the greatness of civ 1, the streamlined feeling you had in civ 2 and if that wouldn't be enough, civ 4 manages to do the impossible and takes the game even further. The only real negative i could mention in regards of this game is the fact, that it will completely take over your life. Other than that, its 10/10 +. One of the titles that truly deserve the maximum score. Expand
  14. HarmLokesz
    Nov 7, 2005
    10
    This is a perfect game. Didn't play Civ 2+3 because I started with Call to Power and that wasn't the best version of Civ. Realy love Civ 4 though. It is easy to get started and you can learn more strategic depths while playing. The choice of music is also very good. I like the music before 1700. I also played it on my P4 1700 laptop with an ATI firegl graphics card. did not have This is a perfect game. Didn't play Civ 2+3 because I started with Call to Power and that wasn't the best version of Civ. Realy love Civ 4 though. It is easy to get started and you can learn more strategic depths while playing. The choice of music is also very good. I like the music before 1700. I also played it on my P4 1700 laptop with an ATI firegl graphics card. did not have any performance issues. Thats very nice. Found a few technical issues with the graphics but I must admit I didn't install the latest drivers. Don't expect too much from the graphics. It is just there to present the gameplay. And the gameplay is superb. Expand
  15. BillC.
    Feb 19, 2006
    10
    This isn't Quake or Half-Life or Far Cry. It is a strategy game. If you can't handle strategy then don't buy this game. However, if you enjoy thinking and planning then you can't go wrong with Civ 4. Like others here Civ 3 was a let down in my eyes. However, Civ 4 storms back and is just awesome. Have completed the game three times now - each with a different This isn't Quake or Half-Life or Far Cry. It is a strategy game. If you can't handle strategy then don't buy this game. However, if you enjoy thinking and planning then you can't go wrong with Civ 4. Like others here Civ 3 was a let down in my eyes. However, Civ 4 storms back and is just awesome. Have completed the game three times now - each with a different strategry. There is tons of flexibility for just about any type of player. Trust me - you'll get your $50 back in gameplay. Hours and hours of fun! Expand
  16. TobyM
    Dec 30, 2009
    9
    Whatever people say about the game being bad is likely because in all honesty it's not just insanely tough, it's also hard to get into. But i give this game a 9 because once you do get into it, it is one of the best strategy games i play to date, the indepth of the culture aspect of the game leads to a whole new way of getting victory, why kill your annoyingly AI oppents when Whatever people say about the game being bad is likely because in all honesty it's not just insanely tough, it's also hard to get into. But i give this game a 9 because once you do get into it, it is one of the best strategy games i play to date, the indepth of the culture aspect of the game leads to a whole new way of getting victory, why kill your annoyingly AI oppents when they can kill your tank with archers (which i've tested and isn't true) when you can expand your cultrual borders into theirs and then before they know it! The city is yours! Expand
  17. Zac
    Nov 20, 2005
    10
    A great improvement on the other Civ games, and that's saying a lot. The changes from Civ3 make the gameplay smoother and more emersive.
  18. MakaH.
    Nov 9, 2005
    10
    Civ 4 da best!!!!
  19. Nic
    Dec 30, 2005
    10
    I never liked Civilization games before, but this one pulled me in. The graphics are superb and it's easier than ever for newbies. It's deeper and overall more satisfying.
  20. JussiA.
    Oct 2, 2006
    10
    I had thought my playing habits were falling for good as I more and more rarely found myself playing long hours of any game. But Civilization 4 took me by suprise. I got it at 11 'o clock when I was just about to goto the lecture. The lecture was skipped and after 16 hours I finally went to sleep. Also the next day I skipped all the lectures that day. Even now after a year I still I had thought my playing habits were falling for good as I more and more rarely found myself playing long hours of any game. But Civilization 4 took me by suprise. I got it at 11 'o clock when I was just about to goto the lecture. The lecture was skipped and after 16 hours I finally went to sleep. Also the next day I skipped all the lectures that day. Even now after a year I still find myself playing the famous "one more turn" all over again. But nowadays I only play on my leisure time. Civanonymous video was so funny, because it was true. Expand
  21. May 6, 2012
    10
    This game's genre is not my kind of thing, but I have to give it props for having the most meticulously balanced design and variety of paths to victory.

    The definitive turn-based strategy game of all time, and will continue to be considering the dismal failure that was V.
  22. Apr 13, 2017
    10
    A thousand times better than Civ 5, a million times better than Civ 6. Definitely the best of the series, and nostalgia has nothing to do with it. Buy this game.
  23. MorganC.
    Mar 30, 2006
    10
    This is, quite literally, the best game I've ever played. Will keep you hooked for hours on end.
  24. Oct 2, 2010
    10
    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 and being totally obsessed with conquering the world then this is the right game for you!
  25. Mar 22, 2012
    10
    The best Civilization game of them all. If you can only play one of them, this is it! Note that this review was written AFTER Civilization V has been out for quite a while already. Yes IV is that good.
  26. Nov 29, 2013
    10
    This game has exceeded my expectations after Civ3. I really don't think that this can be beat by almost any game. This is one of those games you can just play over and over and over, and have a completely different experience every time. Honestly, this is a game that would be in almost anyone's top 10.
  27. Nov 14, 2014
    10
    I'm really amazed that anyone could rate this game below an 8 for any reason. IMHO Civ IV is the standard that all other strategy games must be measured. Even Civ V is a step backward. The flexibility, the options and different strategies you can employ is simply staggering. I've now played through at least 50 times, and will keep at it as long as other games fail to measure up.
  28. Nov 11, 2013
    10
    Still, by far, one of the best games in the series, and one of the best games ever made. Don't play this game if you do not wish to spend hours upon hours conquering the world.
  29. GreatGamer
    Nov 26, 2009
    10
    Best Civ game ever made. Great technology tree, culture, military, superb graphic, music and the best gameplay in strategic games. There are "only" 18 nations (civilizations) but additional are added in the next addons ;P My score is 10-/10, but there are no "-" scores availabele, so i score maxumim ;)
  30. Oct 1, 2013
    10
    Best game of the series.
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  31. RobertN.
    Mar 29, 2006
    10
    The ultimate in strategy. If you
  32. PaulT.
    Nov 4, 2005
    10
    Very addictive game. If you like Civ you will like this. Note to Julio: 'You're a blank'.
  33. DavidL.
    Sep 27, 2006
    10
    Civilization IV is a great game, it is very addictive and requires alot of skill to play and win. When playing Civilization IV it teaches you about history and it also makes you have fun at the same time!
  34. Aug 9, 2011
    10
    This game never gets old. It is now six years since the game came out and I am still playing. This is one of those games that beats its successor. Civ V cannot stand up to this game. This game has the right amount of complexity to keep it interesting.
  35. Oct 15, 2013
    9
    Sorry, went to the wrong game lol and reviewed the wrong game sorry. Can someone perhaps delete my previous one?...ugh...oh well! Off to visist the Civ 5 one!
  36. May 25, 2013
    10
    ....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more turn... one more turn... one more turn....one more Expand
  37. HenryM.
    Oct 27, 2005
    10
    Brilliant, brilliant, brilliant. Sooo much better than AOE3. If you're an AOE fan but never thought you had the brain for CIV, then this is for you.
  38. CarloR.
    Jan 16, 2006
    8
    Good game. Potentially addicting for spurts of time, but also potentially repetitive, predictable and tedious. A 9.3?? Alongside such classics as Baldur's Gate II, Quake or Civ 2?!! Ridiculous. I was blown away by Civ 2, dissapointed w/ Civ3, and found this one to be good, but not deserving of the effusive praise seen here.
  39. PaulClarke
    Jan 17, 2006
    9
    Excellent game - after the dissapointment of Civ III (The day I bought Civ III ended with me re-installing Civ II) This game has everything.

    People her say you can't micromanage the cities...Oh yes you can - you just don't have to (it's an option) LIkewise the autoexplore etc YOU CAN DO IT YOURSELF IF YOU LIKE.
  40. EddieB.
    Jan 8, 2006
    9
    I must say I really enjoy this game. I have been playing Civ since 1993. Oringal Civ was good, Civ II was excellent, Civ III had some neat ideas but cheated a lot and was a bit of a bummer although the "Conquest" expansion made it a bit better it still wasn't close to the excellent Civ II. Now there is Civ IV and I must say after playing two games for a total of 25 hours that I quite I must say I really enjoy this game. I have been playing Civ since 1993. Oringal Civ was good, Civ II was excellent, Civ III had some neat ideas but cheated a lot and was a bit of a bummer although the "Conquest" expansion made it a bit better it still wasn't close to the excellent Civ II. Now there is Civ IV and I must say after playing two games for a total of 25 hours that I quite like it. The game works very smooth for me, I have a Ati 9800 but have no problems at all. The game (version 1.09) has crashed once and with the new patch (1.52) it hasn't crashed at all. I love the fact that you can set it at Marathon now, the game takes a lot longer and you really have time to build up an army and go to war. In the past it happened a lot that by the time you were ready to attack your units were obsolete already. Non of this in marathon setting. The in game music is great also. I only don't like the 3D graphics, it's to hard to get a good view of your part of the world, and the in game movies are still a let down compared to the fantastic Civ II in games movies (classical music and very unique little movies). I highly recommend this game. Expand
  41. EricS.
    May 3, 2006
    10
    Long time Civ fan and this is far and away an improvement on every level. The graphics, the playability, the new interface.
  42. BrettL.
    Jun 6, 2006
    10
    Absolutely awesome - 100% improvement on Civ III
  43. NickU.
    Jan 8, 2007
    10
    I've been playing Civ since Civ I and Civ II was always my favorite. Now along comes Civ IV and it is the perfect upgrade. It brings back the fun of Civ II with a pretty face and removes some of the tedious stuff that brought Civ III down. Great game.
  44. AdamS.
    Mar 12, 2007
    9
    I have always enjoyed the civilization series and I think this is a great addition.
  45. Barlog.
    Jun 27, 2007
    10
    Perfect Game. I felt like an accountant in Civ 3 and II. The first one made me feel like the real ruler and warlord. In Civ4 i feel a ruler again. Thank you Sid for finally making a good sequel for Civ 1.
  46. M.A.
    Jul 2, 2007
    9
    Once this one arrived, i knew my private life will have to go on hold for quite some time.
  47. JonathanM.
    Sep 30, 2007
    9
    I think this may be one of those games where fans of the previous titles in the series will either love this one or hate it, with few exceptions. I, for one, played Civ 2 Gold for days and weeks on end. I adored that game, yet I barely touched Civ 3. After being pushed into playing the 4th, I rediscovered my love of the Civ series, for the most part. One thing all fans of Civ 3 who read I think this may be one of those games where fans of the previous titles in the series will either love this one or hate it, with few exceptions. I, for one, played Civ 2 Gold for days and weeks on end. I adored that game, yet I barely touched Civ 3. After being pushed into playing the 4th, I rediscovered my love of the Civ series, for the most part. One thing all fans of Civ 3 who read this must be aware of is that this is **much** different from Civ 3. Go to www.civfanatics.com (biggest Civ fan site) and look for articles comparing the two, especially the one that specifically addresses Civ 3 players who are having a miserable time with the game. The gist of the article is this: **This is not Civ 3, and if you play it like it's Civ 3 YOU WILL LOSE**. Most agree, after getting over that, that Civ 4 is the far superior game. I won't go into all of the details; you can look those up for yourself. There IS an issue with Civ 4's formula for barbarian activity, however, that should also be made known in these reviews so that no one will be disappointed. **The bigger your map is and the more civs you add, the worse the barbarian problems will be.** Don't start off on a huge map with lots of civs. Start small and learn what's different in Civ 4 first. Ok, have I moved past all of the necessary disclaimers yet? I forget. I hope so. Civ 4 is a deep, interesting, and fairly balanced strategy game. We've come along way since the 2nd and certainly since the 1st. Civ specific units are in from the last one, as well as special buildings. The biggest difference on the front end, though, are the leaders. Yeah, they're historical, but, more importantly, their various abilities (more added in the two expansions) become specialized tools for however the player would like to play the game. Strategies have never been more diverse in the series. Hannibal sure as heck ain't gonna play like Gandhi. These strategies make use of everything: old and new concepts. To keep this from becoming much longer than it already is, I'll just say that everything is much improved and evolved over the previous iterations, and readers would be wise to give a good Civ strategy site a look to get the hang of the finer points of the game and its various strategies. Hmmm, well, then why did I give it only a 9? Civ 4 lacks the ocean of mods and scenarios that the previous versions, especially the 2D versions, had. That's a no brainer, of course. Not as many people have or would like to take the time to develop the skills necessary to do that in a 3D game like Civ 4. It's sad, but it was inevitable, too. Still, Civ 4 is a Civ title in all the glory a fan would expect. Great game. Expand
  48. SaschaP.
    Nov 1, 2005
    8
    It's no Alpha Centauri, but better than Civ 3 at any rate. I would greatly prefer a classical iso perspective, but every game has to be 3D nowadays, whether it makes sense or not.
  49. BoydS.
    Nov 17, 2005
    10
    One of the best games i have ever played!
  50. JamaalJ.
    Nov 2, 2005
    10
    This is a huge step forward. Adding new gameplay, cutting out the boring parts, making the game accessible to newbs while streamlining everything is perfect. The problem is that you have old grumpy people who want civ1. if that's what you want, go play it. kudos for taking some risks.
  51. RyanP.
    Nov 23, 2005
    10
    Give the game time.. a lot has changed since civ3. Contrary to what some of the other reviewers have said there IS city-micromanagement. After i played my first game i thought it was garbage.. after another one i can barely put the game down. Also artillery can attack conventionally, but they don't have the imbalanced no-retaliation attack they did in civ3.
  52. EarlG.
    Nov 5, 2005
    8
    Ok, did some extensive "testing". The game is really impro?ved and immersive - in general. But... - As already said, the eras pass too fast and your units get obsolete before you can use them. - Religions need to be improved by patches. Christianity and Islam are almost never adopted as state religions. There is no incentive for the AI and the player to do so. - Streamlined gameplay also Ok, did some extensive "testing". The game is really impro?ved and immersive - in general. But... - As already said, the eras pass too fast and your units get obsolete before you can use them. - Religions need to be improved by patches. Christianity and Islam are almost never adopted as state religions. There is no incentive for the AI and the player to do so. - Streamlined gameplay also causes the cities to get easily idle. To few buildings to build. - The PC can't keep up with the late game on a standard map. The delays and lag can become horrible. The same when you zoom out on a messy map. (CPU 2,8 and 512 RAM) Obvious pros: - Religion adds a new layer. - Culture conversion is a viable option, but not too easy achieved. - Civics are nice. I'm not sure if I am happy with the graphics. From a perspective of functionality 3D was surely not necessary. And it's a drain on system performance. On the other hand... well, I don't know. I guess you get used and grow fond of them. All in all a good game. I hope it will get better with patches. Expand
  53. ROL
    Nov 6, 2005
    10
    If you expect to use the same strategies as civ 3 you'll hate this, it is quite different so takes a while to readjust. More factors complicate the strategy making it less formulaic. Some people have complained of slow performance, sound problems, and firaxis really should release a demo so people can see if this effects them. But my system is quite puny [AMD 2000, 512MB, FX5200] and If you expect to use the same strategies as civ 3 you'll hate this, it is quite different so takes a while to readjust. More factors complicate the strategy making it less formulaic. Some people have complained of slow performance, sound problems, and firaxis really should release a demo so people can see if this effects them. But my system is quite puny [AMD 2000, 512MB, FX5200] and it runs things fine on a standard map slowing down slightly at the end game but nothing drastic. Good game if you are willing to learn new strategies.; a really good game. Expand
  54. DavidD.
    Nov 7, 2005
    10
    This game is absolutely stunning. One warning: you will get the chants stuck in your head with about 6 hours of play! This is one of the best games out there, but there are huge bugs on the MP. However, this will be fixed within the week.
  55. CG
    Oct 18, 2005
    10
    Civ Rocks! Is the very best game ever!!!
  56. Scott
    Nov 8, 2005
    10
    The bets of the Civ games. The biggest problem with the older games in the series was overall game length. Its been fixed with many other great improvements.
  57. Ralph
    Nov 8, 2005
    9
    Like a breath of fresh air. I can't wait to get home from work and play some more. IN fact I might take off a few days to really get stuck in :) No problems with getting it to work out of the box even though I have an ATI 9700 pro video card.
  58. DanM.
    Oct 26, 2005
    10
    Best civ ever, and now its noob friendly... too bad ill have to drop out of college now...
  59. [Anonymous]
    Oct 26, 2005
    10
    One of the best games of ALL TIME.
  60. Sam
    Oct 27, 2005
    10
    I've played em all and more or less left the series after the last was such a flop. I cannot harp enough on how great this game actually is...I have never played a Civ game as good as this. Has the charm of the original matched with new game improving features. I couldn't have asked for more.
  61. DavidS.
    Oct 28, 2005
    10
    Amazing. The games are of the right length, not too long that you can't try out new strategies, but long enough to make it feel important. The epic Spearman vs. Tank battles don't happen AS much, but it's still an issue. Much easier on the eyes. The interface is streamlined, the bottom left has a box with info depending on where you're clicking. Best in Civilization Amazing. The games are of the right length, not too long that you can't try out new strategies, but long enough to make it feel important. The epic Spearman vs. Tank battles don't happen AS much, but it's still an issue. Much easier on the eyes. The interface is streamlined, the bottom left has a box with info depending on where you're clicking. Best in Civilization series and contending with AC for best TBS. Expand
  62. ShawnK.
    Oct 29, 2005
    10
    IF I could give it a 9.9 I would because of some technical issues involving on-line play that caused me and three to completely lose a three hour game. Other than that, perfect this far in my view.
  63. Frank
    Oct 31, 2005
    9
    Good game overall. Could be better. I think the pace of the game is too fast. You can't actually enjoy the feel of an Era, because tech progress goes so fast. Even on Epic, the time you spend building an army to crush an ennemy makes your units obselete before the end of the war! At the end of my first war, i upgraded archer for marines!!! Need more playing maybe...
  64. WalterR.
    Oct 30, 2005
    8
    I'm a big fan of the series but this time around I'm left wondering why such a big departure from the others. I still rate Alpha Centauri as the best and still play it on occasion. Most of what disappointed me about this one is the combat units... too big for one, no reliable way of knowing defensive strengths and why the bowman is such a defensive powerhouse. The graphics are I'm a big fan of the series but this time around I'm left wondering why such a big departure from the others. I still rate Alpha Centauri as the best and still play it on occasion. Most of what disappointed me about this one is the combat units... too big for one, no reliable way of knowing defensive strengths and why the bowman is such a defensive powerhouse. The graphics are beautiful but sorry to say they aren't easier on the eyes, leaves me cockeyed really and why the change from left to right click for unit movements. Here's hoping for Alpha Centauri II... Expand
  65. RonnyE.
    Oct 31, 2005
    10
    An easy 10. Hard to find any flaws with it. I even liked civ3, but this is much better.
  66. JasonW.
    Oct 31, 2005
    10
    Note to David P. - You didn't give the game a 10 because "1) lesser units can still destroy greater units, e.g. cavalry destroying an Apache helicopter." If you look at the actual odds of this happening it would be extremely rare. Like one in a million. Even if you have a severely damages gunship vs. a heavily fortified and upgraded cavalry, the gunship will still usually win. I Note to David P. - You didn't give the game a 10 because "1) lesser units can still destroy greater units, e.g. cavalry destroying an Apache helicopter." If you look at the actual odds of this happening it would be extremely rare. Like one in a million. Even if you have a severely damages gunship vs. a heavily fortified and upgraded cavalry, the gunship will still usually win. I don't see the problem. You also said "why are the units so large? Tanks and soldiers tower over cityscapes. I'd love to see a more realistic sense of scale, so that the game itself takes on a greater sense of scale." Well it wouldn't make any sense to have units actual size. You would not be able to see them at all on the map. You are basically viewing the world from outer space. It would make no sense at all to have the units represented to scale on the map. Expand
  67. JakeL.
    Jan 13, 2006
    10
    Great game! They have fixed all of the problems with the old game and made this one much better!
  68. EdoardoD.
    Jan 2, 2006
    8
    Excellent game! Not as complex as Civilization 3, but there are some new things to compensate! I don't understand the need for a 3d world, it makes the game graphic quite heavy and slow down everything, especially in multiplayer. Nevertheless the best Sid Meyer's Civilization!
  69. AndrewR.
    Oct 23, 2006
    10
    Fantastic game! Multiplayer is absolutely amazing. Definately get it if you're a fan of strategy games.
  70. Bass
    Jan 6, 2006
    10
    Seriously, if you have not already go and buy this game right now. I could literally talk for hours about how amazing and addictive this title is but you can never truely understand such things until you play it for yourself. I was unlucky enough to miss previous installments in the Civilization series, and was overjoyed when this forth game was finally announced. Incredibly accessible Seriously, if you have not already go and buy this game right now. I could literally talk for hours about how amazing and addictive this title is but you can never truely understand such things until you play it for yourself. I was unlucky enough to miss previous installments in the Civilization series, and was overjoyed when this forth game was finally announced. Incredibly accessible and overflowing with depth and creativity, Civ 4 is easily the game of the year for the PC, and overall the series of Civ titles are with out a doubt some of the best games ever made on any platform. Expand
  71. MurderousEmu
    Feb 26, 2006
    9
    I can't believe some of the reasons people have for giving this game a bad rating. Ok, the steep system requirements and buggy initial release are valid, but wanting the scale of units to be more accurate? You idiots. How would you be able to see them? Then there's the gripe about the game playing itself. It has 7 or 8 difficulty levels, try a harder one if it's too easy I can't believe some of the reasons people have for giving this game a bad rating. Ok, the steep system requirements and buggy initial release are valid, but wanting the scale of units to be more accurate? You idiots. How would you be able to see them? Then there's the gripe about the game playing itself. It has 7 or 8 difficulty levels, try a harder one if it's too easy for you, or just turn off the tips and City Governors. I agree that it suggests some pretty stupid moves, but a 10 second look through the Options menu solves that problem you retards. And finally, my favorite; "Why isn't there a difference between religions?" Gee, let's think about this for a minute. I really can't see any problems coming from that. Who would get offended or argue over differing views on something as trivial as Religion? (That was sarcasm). Besides, does it really matter? You can still create a peaceful, loving civ, or a nation full of war-mongering fanatics. What you call the god that you do these things in the name of is just a formality really. Civ IV is a great game that shows an honest effort by Firaxis not to rest on there laurels, but to improve upon an already great formula. If you don't think they accomplished that, at least come up with a good reason. Expand
  72. G.I.
    Apr 26, 2006
    10
    The best Civ ever. Much improved in every aspect. I can't believe all the nay-sayers. They shouldn't lose time with TBS anyway if they can't appreciate Civ IV.
  73. BradR.
    May 26, 2006
    10
    Unit promotions and inventive new wonders push the strategy to a new level. AI is improved as well. it waits until it has an optimal amount of units before advancing, rather than immediatly sending new units into battle, no matter the odds. I'm still waiting to for them to ressurect the advisor's screen in Civ2 where you have Elvis and Co.
  74. MattB.
    Jul 11, 2006
    10
    At first it was hard to transfer from Civ3 to Civ4, but once you get how to play a great experience. The online can be slow when loading, but once you get going its real fun. A great strategy game and well improved.
  75. PeterM.
    Jul 2, 2006
    8
    Great game, although it stops in 2780 AD. Probably my civ is too large. At end turn, the game stops.
  76. ChrisC.
    Feb 24, 2007
    10
    Hated this when I first played it. I'd been a big fan of all three previous Civilization versions and just could not believe what they'd done to the latest version. The maps seemed smaller, a lot of things appeared to be simplified, etc. However, a few hours later I was hooked - this is by far the best of the series. The unimportant stuff's been automated and some new key Hated this when I first played it. I'd been a big fan of all three previous Civilization versions and just could not believe what they'd done to the latest version. The maps seemed smaller, a lot of things appeared to be simplified, etc. However, a few hours later I was hooked - this is by far the best of the series. The unimportant stuff's been automated and some new key elements added such as religions. If you like strategy games, this is a must. Expand
  77. JohnD.
    May 19, 2007
    10
    Amazing strategy and just the incredible amount of variablity.
  78. MikeC.
    Jul 23, 2007
    10
    Back in college, i'd play civ 2 for fifteen hours, only getting up from my chair to pee. i have been a huge civ fan for over a decade. i loved civ2, didn't care so much for civ3; as for civ4...oh my god, this is the best video game ever created, hands down. Woohoo!!!
  79. ZachF.
    Jan 2, 2008
    10
    To all the people who say "this game sucks", "you can't build more than 6 or 7 cities because the economy crashes", and other things, tell me which is more realistic: 1. 30 tiny little towns all based around one big city, which is constantly having people go make more tiny little towns. 2. 6 or 7 large, well developed cities, with little tiny towns (the civ 4 way, not the civ 3 way To all the people who say "this game sucks", "you can't build more than 6 or 7 cities because the economy crashes", and other things, tell me which is more realistic: 1. 30 tiny little towns all based around one big city, which is constantly having people go make more tiny little towns. 2. 6 or 7 large, well developed cities, with little tiny towns (the civ 4 way, not the civ 3 way of towns) growing into more large, well developed cities. To elaborate, the civ 3 towns, in my view, are size 1 and size 2 cities, and civ 4 towns, in my view, are the "town" culture improvement. Expand
  80. NealV.
    Feb 26, 2008
    9
    Very good and addicting gameplay. Fans of the genre will spend hours replaying with different civilizations and options. Difficulty allows players of different abilities and investment to play at a challenging level. Only drawback is ok AI and tedious micromanagement near the end of the game. Expansion packs help with the AI.
  81. JohnM
    Jan 25, 2009
    10
    I've played a lot of turn based strategy games. This one is the best, particularly with the expansions. Tremendous replayability. The AI is fairly challenging. There are many different paths to victory and each is completely different. More than 3 years after this game was released I am still playing it regularly.
  82. JustinSt.J
    Oct 31, 2009
    9
    Excellent game. Enormous replay value. Great online play. There is tons going on and tons of factors to consider... perhaps too many. The game has a good reference guide built in yet this guide is constantly lacking critical information.
  83. EP
    Nov 13, 2005
    9
    This is easilly the best civ game ever made. The quantity of viable options and strategies available has exploded while issues with the arduous micro management and boring end game have been all but erased. I will have to deduct a point from my rating for two things, though: Firstly, while the new graphics look nice, I find them somewhat superfluous and unnecessarily restrictive. I'd This is easilly the best civ game ever made. The quantity of viable options and strategies available has exploded while issues with the arduous micro management and boring end game have been all but erased. I will have to deduct a point from my rating for two things, though: Firstly, while the new graphics look nice, I find them somewhat superfluous and unnecessarily restrictive. I'd love to play this game on my laptop as well. Secondly, some areas of the game, such as the civilopedia and the advisor screens, lack a bit of polish. I'm sure official patches or fanmade mods will address these issues eventually. Expand
  84. ClaudC.
    Nov 29, 2005
    8
    It improves on some points of the game such as getting rid of waste/corruption and replacing it with a city maintenance cost. But I would have to agree with some of the other people here that they broke the civilopedia, and not being able to trade resources and tech is silly. To Lee H. what civ have you been playing in the previous versions of civ the combat animation consisted of a guy It improves on some points of the game such as getting rid of waste/corruption and replacing it with a city maintenance cost. But I would have to agree with some of the other people here that they broke the civilopedia, and not being able to trade resources and tech is silly. To Lee H. what civ have you been playing in the previous versions of civ the combat animation consisted of a guy swinging a sword or firing a gun real "in-depth". To Ed "If you've never played a Civ before, you should, but once you've played any one of them, you've more of less played them all" if you tell me you played civ 1 and then civ 2 and you think they are all the same then you were sleeping when you played 1. Wel I think this game is an improvement overall even though they did break some things so it get an 8. Expand
  85. A.D.
    Nov 3, 2005
    10
    This game is keeping with the classic Civ's. Adding new aspects to the game that really keeps you on your toe's. Something going on every turn.
  86. KonstantinT.
    Nov 7, 2005
    10
    I've played a LOT of strategy games, but this is the most AMAZING game i've ever had the pleasure of playing.
  87. Alpha
    Dec 15, 2005
    10
    Easily game of the year, not even BF2 comes close. When people say this game has great replay value, they're not lying. The multiplayer function is great, if you ever get bored of the single player (you shouldn't anyways), there's always the option of kicking someone's ass online. Contrary to what the others are saying, the game is very well balanced and runs very Easily game of the year, not even BF2 comes close. When people say this game has great replay value, they're not lying. The multiplayer function is great, if you ever get bored of the single player (you shouldn't anyways), there's always the option of kicking someone's ass online. Contrary to what the others are saying, the game is very well balanced and runs very stable, haven't crashed once. Definitely a lot better than Civ3, and just as good (if not better) than Civ1-2. Great game. Expand
  88. Christo
    Dec 20, 2005
    10
    Game of the Decade...so far. Small bugs will be worked out soon. Firaxis is good at that.
  89. Ben
    Dec 23, 2005
    10
    The real successor to Civilzation II - a blast to play, and a really marvelous soundtrack. All factors combine to create more than just a game - it's a real experience. Depth - as many reviewers have noted - is the key.
  90. AllisonS.
    Dec 27, 2005
    10
    Just plain gorgeous! I'm never going back to clunky old Civ 2
  91. G.C.
    Dec 30, 2005
    10
    All I have to say to the whiners complaining of it being dumbed down is, use your brain and turn off the automation. This is still the best game ever, and while the concept wouldn't change (shy should it?), they've made some adjustments that seem to make the game overall more intuitive and workable.
  92. Matthias
    Oct 23, 2005
    10
    Civ has always been one of the greatest games in a league of its own and this one surpases all hopes with a multiplayer that works, along with amazing improvements to all other aspects of gameplay.
  93. SouravM.
    Oct 26, 2005
    10
    Superb. Best in the civilization . Very nice gameplay.
  94. JohnK.
    Oct 29, 2005
    10
    Fantastic. Best game I've played since Civ 2, Or Frontier.
  95. S.Omer
    Feb 19, 2006
    10
    Best game ever. AI is really good, alot of depth AND great graphics (after patching). Buy this game. Period.
  96. MilesL.
    Dec 28, 2007
    10
    I have never spent so much time on a game, even though i only played single player
  97. YannickB.
    Oct 29, 2007
    9
    It's a great game with a whole range of concepts and stuff, you can spend hours creating your empire, it's just sad there's only a turn-based mode, i'd love to play without the turns.
  98. MarkV.
    Jan 24, 2008
    10
    This game is a huge improvement from the last versions so I give this a ten.
  99. Oyster
    Jun 18, 2008
    8
    This game is very fun to play, but it's pretty unbalanced.
  100. DavidM.
    Jul 14, 2008
    10
    I love simulation games, and this is undoubtedly my favorite and, in my opinion, the best out there!
Metascore
94

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
  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.