- Civ 5 Which Is The Best Scenario
- Civ 5 Scenario Mod
Civ 5 Which Is The Best Scenario
One of the historical scenarios that I have always enjoyed playing through has been the Fall of the Roman Empire. It is a relatively popular topic game-wise, and has made appearances in the Civilization series, the Total War series, and the Age of Empires series (and probably still others that I have not encountered). As one of the major transition points in Western Civilization, the Fall of the Roman Empire has quite a lot of material to work with. It is thus always interesting to see what elements individual games choose to focus on.
Civ 5 Scenario Mod
The Fall of Rome scenario was added to Civilization 5 as part of the Gods and Kings expansion pack, the first major pack released for Civilization 5 that changed fundamental aspects of the game. G&K altered aspects of unit combat, implemented a religion/faith mechanic, and added some new civilizations to the game such as Byzantium, Carthage, the Celts, and Ethiopia. The Fall of Rome scenario took advantage of some of these changes by pitting the Roman and Byzantine civilizations (representing the Western and Eastern halves of the late Roman Empire) against 6 enemy civilizations: the Picts, the Vandals, the Franks, the Goths, the Huns, and the Sassanid Persians. The scenario was relatively simple and straightforward: the two Romans civs existed on the same team in charge of a very large number of cities in a massive territory, while their enemies started with small territories, but large and powerful armies. The goal of the scenario was to control the most Imperial Roman cities, thereby earning Victory Points, with the winner being the civilization with the most at the end of 70 game turns. The scenario largely disabled fundamental mechanics like science, religion, and diplomacy, choosing instead of focus on war and combat. Cultural advancement remained, but in a very interesting altered context, that I shall address in more depth shortly. While simple and fun, the scenario’s largest problem for me was the fact that playing as one of the Roman players meant that turns took FOREVER, both for you to play and for the computer to process.
Fall of Rome Play as either Eastern Rome or Western Rome trying to fend off the barbarians OR as one of the barbarians themselves. (Webhallen, Official) Both Eastern and Western Rome have to pick Social Politics, that have negative effects. This is supposed to reflect the political decay and decadence. As may some of you know, the 'Pax Romana Aeternum' achievement (currently 3rd rarest in civ with 0,23%) is awarded for having all your initial cities as east or western Rome at the end of a game in the Fall of Rome scenario, and at the same time winning it ( having the most points after turn 70), all on deity difficulty.
Of the many changes the designers made to the base Civ game to create the scenario, two in particular caught my attention. These two changes were made by the developers to create the unique play experience of the Western Roman Empire. The first change involves the special characteristics assigned to the West Rome faction that give it some strengths that other factions do not have. In Civ 5, all factions have 3 special characteristics: a passive ability, a unique unit, and then either another unique unit or a unique building. In the scenario, the unique units for Western Rome are the same as the normal Roman faction from the base game. This in itself is not massively interesting, though the scenario does put the player in a different situation than a player in the base game. The unique units, the Legion and the Ballista, are very useful in the base game as they are strong units for their time period. The Roman player can use them for some early aggression as they provide a powerful combat advantage. In the scenario, however, the other factions all have equally strong units at the same time, negating any sort of military advantage. Additionally, since the player starts with an empire in place, there is much less room for offensive military actions early in the scenario.
What was changed for the Roman faction to make it into the Western Roman Empire, was the faction’s unique ability. The unique ability for the Western Romans is called “Barbarian Enrollment” – in the context of the game, it means that any enemy unit that is eliminated by a Western Roman Legion unit in combat will be essentially resurrected on the spot to fight for the Western Roman player. This is a great ability in game play terms, and a pretty interesting one from a historical perspective. In game play terms, this ability is very strong because the math changes from simply subtracting one enemy unit to subtracting one unit and adding one friendly unit. Sort of a zombie strategy. It’s also quite fun because it allows the Western Roman player to acquire a rather diverse army over time of unique units from the surrounding enemy factions.
In a historical context, the idea of “Barbarian Enrollment” represents the Roman practice of recruiting “barbarian” bands and tribes into the Roman military as foederati – allies of Rome who provided military service to the empire. While Rome had always made use of foreign contingents in her armies, the late Empire saw an increased reliance on armies composed of larger and larger percentages of foreign contingents. Some contingents would be acquired via peaceful negotiation, while others would be coerced from cowed or defeated forces. It should be noted that the coercion of defeated soldiers to serve in one’s army is remarkably common throughout history. The fact that the game designers decided to focus on this aspect of Roman military history is one of the things that I really appreciate about the scenario. It is a great example of a fun game play mechanic that also effectively communicates how diverse Roman armies were during this period of history.
The other major change that caught my attention was the altered Cultural Advancement mechanic. In the base game, culture is a resource that you can accumulate over time and spend on Social Policies. Social Policies are passive boosts to your faction that can help you in a variety of ways based on your play style. Want to focus on the military in your society? Purchase social policies that provide combat bonuses, or speed the production of military units, or give you rewards when you win a battle. Want to focus on Science, Commerce, Diplomacy, or Expansion? Social policies exist for those desires as well. Civ 5 is nicely designed in such a way that each policy evokes a historical/sociological concept. For example, do you develop a Warrior Code, or set up an Oligarchy, or expand Citizenship – all can be chosen, ignored, and implemented at the same time, though there is no removing a policy once it is enacted.
In Fall of Rome, the Cultural Advancement mechanic is heavily changed in purpose, though not in implementation (culture is still a resource you gather and spend). The first part of the change is that the factions are preselected to only have access to certain Social Policies of a completely reworked policy tree. All “barbarian” factions – Goths, Franks, Vandals, etc. – share one set of potential policies, the two Roman Empires share another set, and the Sassanid Persian faction has one set to itself. On the surface, this is a nice way to demonstrate the idea of a shared culture, though the lumping of Goth, Germanic, Hunnic, and Celtic tribes into one grouping is a bit ham-handed to say the least. The real purpose of the culture groups, however, is to essentially establish a narrative. This narrative is simply that during this time period, the Roman Empire was beset by corruption, decadence, and decay, while Persia and the Barbarians were strong and full of vitality. The bonuses the Persians and Barbarians have access to are strong……like really, really strong. Unfairly strong. The Roman policies, on the other hand, are all penalties, something that is VERY new for Civ 5. The Roman factions receive culture passively, and every time they lose a city – an extra punishment so to speak. Every time they acquire X amount of culture, they must pick a policy…….a policy of pure pain for the player. Combat penalties, money penalties, production penalties, etc. Bad, bad stuff. If you don’t have a preset plan for how you will navigate the policies, they alone can do more damage to your empire than the Barbarian hordes.
By themselves, I actually enjoy the Roman Penalty Policies – they’re a new approach and do a good job of communicating the idea that the Roman Empire was suffering from some particular internal problems that exacerbated the threat posed by the Barbarians. My main complaint would be that they over simplify the internal challenges faced by the Roman Empire and hew a bit too closely to the idea that the Roman Empire declined into “an age of darkness and barbarism.” Such an idea is overly romanticized since the reality was that while the Empire itself split up, Roman civilization continued as part of the “barbarian” kingdoms that took its place.
All told, the Civ 5 scenario has a lot to recommend it as a starting point for any discussion of the Fall of the Roman Empire.
Gods and Kings adds 52 new achievements to Civilization 5. Here is the list of the achievements, directly grabbed from the official Civ5:G&K website:
| Austrian Succession || Beat the game on any difficulty as Maria Theresa. |
| Dancer, Actress, Empress, Victor || Beat the game on any difficulty as Empress Theodora. |
| No White Flag Here || Beat the game on any difficulty as Dido. |
| Celtic Thunder || Beat the game on any difficulty as Boudicca. |
| Colonize This || Beat the game on any difficulty as Haile Selassie. |
| Scourge of Everyone || Beat the game on any difficulty as Attila. |
| Baktun the Future || Beat the game on any difficulty as Pacal. |
| Silent No More || Beat the game on any difficulty as William of Orange. |
| Defender of the Faith || Beat the game on any difficulty as Gustavus Adolphus. |
| Et tu, Brute || Win the Fall of Rome scenario. |
| Modern Major-General || Win the Empires of the Smokey Skies scenario. |
| Nobody expects… || As Spain, Use an Inquisitor to remove another religion. |
| From Russia with Love || As Russia, kill an English spy. |
| The Last Crusade || Capture the city that built Petra using a Landship. |
| Holy Father || Select the Papal Primacy Belief and Ally with 12 city states. |
| Capture of Brielle || Capture a Spanish Coastal City with a Dutch Sea Beggar. |
| Hannibal's Crossing || As Carthage, Attack a Roman Unit with an African Forest elephant from a mountain tile. |
| Gimme Your Lunch Money || Bully 3000 gold from city states across any number of playthroughs. |
| Richard the Lionheart || As England, conquer Jerusalem on Emperor or Above in Into The Rennaisance Scenario. |
| Never take our freedom! || Win as the Celts on Emperor or Above in Into The Rennaisance Scenario. |
| The Yokes on the Mongols || Win as Russia on Emperor or Above in Into The Renaissance Scenario. |
| Reconquista Who? || Win as Almohads on Emperor or Above in Into The Renaissance Scenario. |
| Quite Accomplished || Retain control of the same honorable title for the entire length of the game it is available in the Empires of the Smokey Skies scenario. |
| Gentlemen's Agreement || Share intrigue with another player in the Empires of the Smokey Skies scenario. |
| Sky Admiral || Destroy an enemy unit with a flier based at a sky fortress in the Empires of the Smokey Skies scenario. |
| Gad Zeus || Found a Pantheon. |
| Propheterring || Found a Religion. |
| Sticky Fingers || Use a spy to steal technology from a competitor. |
| Junta for Red October || Use a spy to successfully stage a city-state coup. |
| Smoot Talking || Use a spy to gain influence with a city-state. |
| Whack a Mole || Find and kill an enemy spy. |
| Access Denied || Construct the Great Firewall wonder. |
| Missionary Man || Spread your religion to an opponent with a missionary. |
| Holier Than Thou || Become the dominant religion in an opponent's holy city. |
| We are Family || Become the dominant religion in every capital city on a standard-size or larger map. |
| Indoctrinated || Lose dominant status in your holy city to an opponent's religion. |
| Renaissance Man || Win the Into the Renaissance scenario. |
| RAM Usage || Research Satellites while playing as Atilla on a huge map. |
| Lion of the North || As Sweden, Start a turn with your great general stacked with a Hakkapelitta. |
| Rastafari Messiah || As Ethiopia, earn 5 great prophets. |
| Greek Fire || As Byzantines, sink 10 Greek ships with a dromon. |
| Longest. Name. Ever. || Have the city of Llanfairpwllgwyngyll in your empire. |
| Yoink! || As Austria, replace another civ as allies with a city-state and acquire the city-state through diplomatic marriage in the same turn.. |
| Apocalypse Now || As the Maya, nuke a city in the year 2012. |
| Intelligence Network || Share intrigue with a player who previously shared intrigue with you. |
| Turks Shmurks! || Capture Constantinople as any enemy power in the Fall of Rome scenario. |
| Double KO || Capture both Rome and Constantinople in the same game in the Fall of Rome scenario. |
| Gotta catch 'em all! || Capture and recruit all the barbarian unique units using Western Roman Legions without any of them dying in the Fall of Rome scenario. |
| Pax Romana Aeternum || Play in the game as Eastern or Western Rome on Deity and have all your original cities under your control in the Fall of Rome scenario. |
| I missed that day in history class || Capture any Sassanid city as the Celts in the Fall of Rome scenario. |
| I Sunk Your Imperial Capital! || Capture Rome as the Vandals using a boat in the Fall of Rome scenario. |