You must be logged in to post messages.
Please login or register

Age of Empires / Rise of Rome / Definitive Edition
Moderated by Suppiluliuma, PhatFish, Fisk, EpiC_Anonymous, Epd999

Hop to:    
Welcome! You are not logged in. Please Login or Register.27 replies
Age of Empires Heaven » Forums » Age of Empires / Rise of Rome / Definitive Edition » Civilization: Call To Power - the perfect strategy game until AoK! (long version)
Bottom
Topic Subject:Civilization: Call To Power - the perfect strategy game until AoK! (long version)
Breydel
Clubman
posted 04-02-99 06:06 PM ET (US)         

Has any of you ever played the popular Civilization or Civilization II before? I must say I didn't. I only heard of the game before. Now the new Civ is out, Civilization: Call To Power (shorter CTP). I went to the local multimediastore today with the intention of buying Sim City 3000 (I never played any Sim City before either and felt like trying this one out). On the box it said minimum P166 (I got P133 ) which is quite crappy in my case and I could risk it since I'm going to buy a new comp soon anyway. But I didn't because I saw CTP in the store which really surprised me. I read about it in a mag b4 but didn't expect it to be released already. So I bought CTP instead of Sim3000. (CTP has minimum P133 and runs perfect on my machine.)

CTP is a TBS (turnbased) instead of RTS game. I never played TBS before except for the Battle Isle series which I really liked a lot. This one goes FAR beyond Battle Isle IMO.


Well I must say the game is great! The timeline goes from 4000 BC to 3000 AD which spans over all AoE games at once. You start with a single settler in the ancient ages and end up in the year 3000 where your civ can expand in space or build on earth under water. Now I know a lot of you guys don't like space *****(including me) but this one kept it as believable as possible. (You can research computers (internet), genetics, globenet, human cloning, robotics, jet propulsion somewhere in the very near future or present and wormholes, cloaking, space colonies and life extension in the futuristic ages for example. The techtree is much more complicated (read: interesting) than RoR and the game comes with a perfect huge fold-out for it. It is no longer a plain tech tree structure like in RoR but a tree with shortcuts in it. Meaning you can "skip" some techs in the progress to get newers but they are not exagurating of course (like getting a spaceship after a trireme LOL). Very kewl! For all you guys that don't feel like Everquest try out CTP. It's nice to play a TBS game for a change. It also supports multiplayer internet so you can contact me and we could play a game (I would love to play one with a fellow forumer ). (But I'm a hardcore CTP newbie at the moment ) Ooh did I mention yet that the graphics look very cool? Well they do!!! And the music : BEAUTIFUL!!!! Now this ES could learn a lot from! That music is what I call real kewl ancient music. I very much doubt the music in AoK can even touch what I heard. JUST AWESOME! So far I didn't get to hear "space" music but that's probably after I do some civilizing first . (newbie )


It has a lot of options and it won't get boring for the first months, I'm very sure. Victory conditions are PERFECTLY balanced. While diplomacy is heavily surpressed in AoE it is as real as it can get in CTP. Many possibilities for diplomacy - just can't be better IMO. Victories can be military, highest score at year 3000 (ecnonomically) or being to first one to create an alian being in your space laboratory . My guess is I will be playing this game (together with Tiberian Sun in a couple of months) until AoK hits the shelves.


The game has 65 different units or so and 35 different wonders to choose from. The wonders are really great and can't be built by more than 1 player. There is, for example, a wonder (forbidden city) that if you built it, all other players can't attack you unless you start attacking them first (which nutralizes the wonder's advantage and they can fight back of course). A fine wonder if you want to go for a technology victory IMO. Other known wonders are stonehenge and sfinx for example but also stuff like globesat, dinosaur park, Edison's lab, Hollywood and the internet. Wonders work so much better than in RoR. Here your civ isn't limited to only 1 wonder but can choose from the whole pack and build more than 1. Each wonder also gives specific advantages and when you get one, all other civ players can't get that one you just built. There are about 30-40 civs to choose from but they all go through the same tech tree and look the same I think.


To compare with RoR: if you count up all techs, buildings, units, wonders and stuff together I think CTP has about 5 times as much as ROR (like I said, 35 different wonders, 65 units, over 90 nodes of tech trees and lots of options in cities (like setting a government to democracy or communism or whatever u can have (choose from 12 in total) in a city)


It is harder in CTP than in RoR to adjust your economy as perfect as it can be (RoR is a lot more simplistic). There are so many options but still doesn't make you feel like "Ack! I don't wanna start with all the learning" - which is how I felt for Transport Tycoon II . So "easy playing" versus "too childish game" is perfect balanced. CTP also has a nice tutorial which helps you on your way and a detailed manual for further reference. It also has an online gallery with ALL units, techs, wonders, ... just everything in it. (It's more a database than a gallery actually ).


Will I still be playing RoR? I probably will but not daily anymore. I hope a few days/week and probably more in the weekends. (Since I'm a real rookie in CTP now I would like to play a game I know by heart too once and a while.) Besides RoR is still the best RTS game IMO and RTS is my favorite genre. I never thought I would like a TBS game as much as I like CTP.

P.S. My Roman guide will be delayed for a month or so. From April 12 I have to work abroad (Burmingham) for 4 weeks and I will finish it in my hotelroom if we're not going out daily as we are used to .


If anyone else got CTP, PLEASE post here and give me your idea's about it. Mine are first impression since I only went through the tutor and played 1 hour after that. I can repost here after a week or so if youi like and give my second opinion about CTP. See y'all I urgently feel liek playing some ore .

------------------
Breydel

"Of all Gaul, the Belgae are the bravest" - Julius Caesar, 58 B.C.

AuthorReplies:
Breydel
Clubman
posted 04-02-99 06:08 PM ET (US)     1 / 27       
Ack! Sorry for all the typos

------------------
Breydel

"Of all Gaul, the Belgae are the bravest" - Julius Caesar, 58 B.C.

Czar Peter the Great
Inactive
posted 04-02-99 06:19 PM ET (US)     2 / 27       
Where can I get a demo?
FanatiC KaBaN
Clubman
posted 04-02-99 06:34 PM ET (US)     3 / 27       
Oooo, i just got Civ 2 gold edition and its also awesome! I played The original Civ for like 4-5 years (my first game)...

The only reason i got AoE is cause Civ2 wasn't at the store when i went... and i got Civ2 gold cause i didnt find CTP ...

The screnarios kick ass in Civ2 Gold

Don't worry guys, i will play RoR... i will play a lot

Spam
Clubman
posted 04-02-99 07:24 PM ET (US)     4 / 27       
Can some old-time Civ veteran tell me if Call to Power is a significant improvement over Civ2 or not? I was completely unimpressed by Alpha Centauri for its lack of innovation (we waited nine years for THIS?) and I'm concerned that this game is just the same old thing.

Spam

Breydel
Clubman
posted 04-02-99 08:36 PM ET (US)     5 / 27       
Hi Spam. You may find what you're looking for at www.planetinternet.be/vermaak/spelletjesgarnaal/reviews/


The guy who reviewed both SMAC and CTP is a real Civ freak from Civ I on.


Don't let the Dutch language scare you. In the CTP review he compares CTP with both Civ II and SMAC. Try to read the Dutch words. Some are exactly the same as in English or you may find key words in some sentenses (like queing for example).


Hope this helps.

------------------
Breydel

"Of all Gaul, the Belgae are the bravest" - Julius Caesar, 58 B.C.

Breydel
Clubman
posted 04-02-99 08:37 PM ET (US)     6 / 27       
Oops, about the demo: I don't think there is a demo yet but some USA gamers should answer that. Here in Europe all games and movies run behind the States.

------------------
Breydel

"Of all Gaul, the Belgae are the bravest" - Julius Caesar, 58 B.C.

Saga
Inactive
posted 04-02-99 09:32 PM ET (US)     7 / 27       
Yeah can anyone say if CTP is worth the investment it looks a lot like civII.
_Saga
disciplejim
Clubman
posted 04-03-99 00:56 AM ET (US)     8 / 27       
I heard some much about Civ2 I finally picked up the Gold multiplayer edition around Christmas. It can be very engaging; I played for about two weeks straight. Then I hungered for something different and went back to AoE. After a few games I was thinking, "I gave this up for Civ2?" Then I bought RoR and haven't looked at Civ2 since. Sometimes you need a change of pace, bu Civ2 seems rather tedious now.
Calvin
Clubman
posted 04-03-99 01:45 AM ET (US)     9 / 27       
Hey, I got the game too! I know it would be more satisfying to take out someone with more status than I, but it looks like I, Calvin the Great from Greece(not literally of course), shall be your only challenger for the moment. Is there a chat option for Multiplayer? I hope there is, because I played one game online and it was very boring without anyone being able to say anything.

It takes a long time to advance through the years, and the highest tech I've seen in an actual game is Gunpowder. Oh yeah, is it just me, or are some of the people you meet in the Diplomacy screen demon-possessed (especially the Canadian guy)? It sure looks like it. The opening cutscene is awesome and I watch it every time I play. Hehe, I remember one time when I kept finding Settlers in ruins...pretty soon I had cities all over the place .

Oh, and here's a question of strategy. Should you build cities on forests for production or plains for food? I say forests, so you can build faster! But then again, if you sacrifice production for food you get more workers, so you can recuperate for your losses. Also, I don't start collecting Public Works (taxes by any other name) until 1000 BC. When do *you* think is the best time to start?

------------------
Calvin

[This message has been edited by Calvin (edited 04-03-99).]

Last_Knight
Clubman
posted 04-03-99 02:43 AM ET (US)     10 / 27       
I loved civ II (3-4 years ago), and I read that Civ CTP is a good game. Maybe I'll buy it.

------------------
Last Knight

Breydel
Clubman
posted 04-03-99 07:41 AM ET (US)     11 / 27       
LOL my first singleplayer game last night was a disaster. (I'm a Civ newbie you know, never played it b4 ). I didn't finished it cause of bedtime but after more than 2 hours playing (about 1000AD) I felt like I made only very little progress through ages.


FACTS:
1. ROR tactics don't work in CTP. While spreading out is a good strat in ROR, in CTP villies will be unhappy if they are too far away from the capital city. (nag nag )

2. While seeing all that futuristic power I only could get a Samurai as my best unit (somewhere 1000AD).

3. I better grab the manual while I play I think or completely read it first.

4. My economy sucked but I don't know exactly how to adjust it . YET! (hehe)

5. I played with Dutch before and then Vikings. The Vikings actually start with 2 settlers instead of just 1 but in a snowy environment thus not much food around.


QUESTIONS:
1. How come a Settler for example costs 5 turns at the start and 135 (ouch!) after playing over an hour? Note I say turns here, where can I see how much food they cost? And where do I see my food resources?


2. My capital had 9 villies working there (the blue number) and most others cities have only 1 vill. How can I get more vilies there? What if you discover other abandonned cities that you get, should you upgrade them too or just leave them?

3. How can I make faster progress?

4. What's the best strategy? Lots of pettyful towns or only a few but with many upgrades (granary, market, citywalls, ...)

5. Some overall strategy would be appreciated. Is there a website or forum where CTP strats are discussed?


6. Ooh, how do I build ships? Do I need a dock? Or are they build at the city?


7. Is there a website with some in game screenshots so I could see how a map "should" look after playing 1 hour


------------------
Breydel

"Of all Gaul, the Belgae are the bravest" - Julius Caesar, 58 B.C.

Indigo
Clubman
posted 04-03-99 08:13 AM ET (US)     12 / 27       
CTP looks good, I agree. I won't be playing it for at least 2 months, however, since my hd just doesn't have 320 MB free right now.
I wish there was some way to install 50 MB and run everything off the CD.

You're lucky Breydel, since this is your first civ-style gaming experience i'm a bit more critical towards these new civs since I can clearly see any similiarites between them and Civ2.

Let me give you a few tips, based on my Civ and Civ2 experiences. First i'll answer your q's.

1: very strange. Perhaps it is because you are building it at a city which does not have very productive squares. If you built a settler in 5 turns, then it took you 135 later on, and its in the same city, then this must be a really weird addition to the game.

2: Its because your capital city probably has fertile squares around it. You need farms/irrigation to increase food from squares. There is a limit for food collection, which should be represented in the city screen. Once food surplus passes the limit, you get a new villie. Its gets harder as the city grows. What I suggest is taking a look at your small cities, find out which of the city squares they use, and put a farm or irrigation there.

3: Make your people happy, and most likely there will be some sort of reward. In Civ2 it was a "We Love the King (or any other title) day". This usually enhances growth in the cities celebrating. Using it can help you get a high population fast. But, you will have to sacrifice your economy for it (unless you want to cut down on tech instead, which is not good). As a general guideline, tech is the thing that gives the edge in these games. You can increase happiness by increasing luxuries. I suggest a 30% increase, 20% is usually not enough to get them into celebrating mode and thus is a waste of budget which could be used to get more cash.

4: Booming the more cities you can found in the ancient era, the more chances you have of world domination later on. An empire with 50 cities will massacre any other empire once its production gets going. The earlier you found new cities, the better. As a general rule for quick expansion, each city should produce two settlers before it starts city improvement production. In rare cases, some cities should not build settlers at all (such as a city with little food to spare). Improvements like granary and library should get top priority. After you're done with them, city walls are a must.

6: Build a city with access to a water square (preferrably a water square connected to an ocean , you don't want to end up like I did in RoR, 30 ships in an inland lake). No need for a dock. Once you get a tech which allows you to build a naval unit, you'll see it on the build list of your coastal cities.

5 & 7: civilization.gamestats.com/ctp

I think the post is too long already, so I won't give you tips just now enjoy the game, and have fun trying to conquer the world

[This message has been edited by Indigo (edited 04-03-99).]

FWH_meo
Inactive
posted 04-03-99 12:04 PM ET (US)     13 / 27       
Where can you play CTP online? And do you have to pay for it?? I'v been looking for a game to distract me alittle till AoK comes out and it looks like this might be it.

zone name FWH_jethro

Breydel
Clubman
posted 04-03-99 02:17 PM ET (US)     14 / 27       
Meo:

You can click multiplayer -> internet -> and then it shows a list of servers all over the world from green (good ping) to red (bad ping). Just select one and you're off. Maybe the Zone could add it to their list too, donno.


Indigo:

Thanks a lot for the tips. I did some reading in the manual and played some more. Now I know what I did wrong, I didn't get enough villies which means little production and then I put lots of improvements in the queues => HUGE production shortage which leads to a lot of turns. Once production comes in nice the turns lower down again. A settler is build after 11 or 15 turns or so when you start off. My capital city was doing so good that I could get one in 5 turns (a lot better than 135 hé )

My first Samurai got out 2000 years earlier than the other game too . I even got fire triremes, longships and I was able to sneak into the enemies resources with a diplomat. I build a slaver and enslaved a city. I attacked and conquered lots of enemy cities. One enemy was afraid of me early in the game. He wanted a piece treaty so badly and offered me 200 gold I build only 3 cities for quite a long time but they were growing pretty nice. I'll try the booming you suggested here next time I play.

------------------
Breydel

"Of all Gaul, the Belgae are the bravest" - Julius Caesar, 58 B.C.

armagedn
Clubman
posted 04-03-99 04:40 PM ET (US)     15 / 27       
I was just at the local Best Buy today, and (surprise, surprise) it's not there yet. I suppose it's just as well... perhaps I should wait for some reviews before I buy it. I still enjoy Civ II (though I don't play it often anymore), and I wouldn't want to purchase CTP if it's simply more of the same.

Breydel - I'd appreciate it if you posted here how any multi-player games you enter play out. The only turn-based strat I've played online is HOMM II/III, and the turns drag on so long (even w/ a time limit) that the game is just a total bore (even though the single-player is wonderful).

Now don't forget that Roman guide, now!

Breydel
Clubman
posted 04-03-99 08:56 PM ET (US)     16 / 27       
Like I said I'm a Civ newbie. Before I even dare playing online I first gonna have to get some strategies and kick some PC opponents.


But you say you are afraid that it looks like Civ II. From the reviews I read I can say it's better than Civ II but the basic game purpose and stuff is still the same. But it has more units, wonders and a new interface. I read somewhere that the CivI&II players would have some adjusting to do to the new interface. But it definately is a lot better than Sid Meier's Alpha Centauri I read at lots of places! My advize to you: yes wait a little and check out several sites and forums if you are uncertain. My advize to people who never played any of the Civ series: BUY THE DAMN THING IF YOU LOVE AOE FOR IT'S HISTORY CONTENTS OR REAL LIFE GAMESTYLING !

------------------
Breydel

"Of all Gaul, the Belgae are the bravest" - Julius Caesar, 58 B.C.

Number 6
Inactive
posted 04-05-99 11:33 AM ET (US)     17 / 27       
Brey -

Well, that does it, i'm going to pick this up. I just loved CivII (my prior addiction), but it went by the wayside with the advent of my *multiplayer* AOE epiphany. Got another friend who's buying it this week. Hope games play quicker than Civ II though - which could be terribly long. Also, you can probably play this over the Zone LAN. I'll repost when pick it up.

Can you play more than 1v1?

O_Captian
Inactive
posted 04-05-99 01:23 PM ET (US)     18 / 27       
Brey,

I will look into it when I get the time away from my current vice. I totally loved Civ though was very bored w/ SMAC. I played it once for 6 hrs and that is it.

Indigo is correct though, the key to winning is do dominate as much land as possible in the beginning. Early boom and then strengthen structure later. One of my most successful tips delay spending money in the beginning.

Control your city size by building settlers and resource selection, don't build to many military units since they slow production. Get trade asap since you can then produce caravans and keep citys producing something that doesnt cost money to maintain or build units that lowers production. Then use the caravans to make wonders fast. Once you get a wonder that makes citizen happy, let your citys grow. That is just the first phase, but this allows you to get techs extremely fast.

Get monocracy and democracy as fast as possible. Get as many wonders as possible and spread them out except for wonders that build on each other.

Oh yeah, have each city covered by aleast one fast offensive unit (two is optium) that can get to it in one turn. That is build roads to each city and then have a chariot (not sure what they are in CTS) protect the city its in, and then the cities next to that one (think of a hub city, the outer cities as spokes). On a large land mass, hub cities can share spokes for double covered. Thus fewer military units, more production. Never have a city that you can't get a fast offensive unit to in one turn.

[This message has been edited by O_Captian (edited 04-05-99).]

Breydel
Clubman
posted 04-05-99 05:48 PM ET (US)     19 / 27       
Thanks for the tips guys.

Well I had a strange game today. (still singleplayer ). When I researched this new tech (age of reasons) that obsoleted a whole bunch of my wonders I went downhill and fast . My "ally" broke is piecetreaty and couldn't stop tresspassing although I asked him not to do it and the 2 other (which were unfriendly) became at war with me too. My people became unhappy, riots many times, even some revolts. Are there some techs/goverments that you must avoid using at all cost? I didn't made much progress and even had to cut down on musketeers/cannons/liners and go back to Samurais because they got too expensive. I established my first trade routes today . But my former partner had to mess them up . The stupid bastard! I'll kill him first thing tomorrow .


These are the things what I think that I have to get asap, correct me if I'm wrong:

-> ANY government asap since tiranny is the worse of all.

-> Wonders: Stonehenge (+25% food) and Labyrinth (free caravans for trading)

-> granaries: food bonus in that city

-> mill: for production

-> banks: gold bonus

And how can I reveal the maps better? Any tips for that? So many times everyone is sneaking into my backyard like it's their own. Mounted units cannot cross forests but for all the others? Do I really have to build so many units and put them on all the tiles? Damn I miss those RoR towers .


What I also seem to think is that spreading out is the worse I can do. Keeping all cities very close to each other with small trade routes in between works the best for me. When expanding my civ I then build from inside towards outside.


Damn those "ships of the line" look kewl. Really something different than those RoR triremes (for non-civ'ers: civ has triremes too, fire triremes and longships) This really is fun you know. I'm already playing all the units that are in AoK and AoD (pikeman, Samurai, knight, ...)

------------------
Breydel

"Of all Gaul, the Belgae are the bravest" - Julius Caesar, 58 B.C.

[This message has been edited by Breydel (edited 04-05-99).]

Calvin
Clubman
posted 04-05-99 11:34 PM ET (US)     20 / 27       
First things first: Chariots got turned into Mounted Archers in Call to Power.

Second, I decided to uninstall CTP 'cause I looked at "2703K left on hard drive" in C++ and said "This is ridiculous!"

Third, what about the Sphinx wonder? That frees up a lot of the production sucked out by your military units.

Fourth, how come I had squads of Knights running around in 2000 BC? :P

That's my little pointless post.

------------------
Calvin

Breydel
Clubman
posted 04-06-99 00:58 AM ET (US)     21 / 27       
Hey I got my economy in glory again. The sollution? COMMUNISM


Production goes so well then that u can get lots of city improvements.

------------------
Breydel

"Of all Gaul, the Belgae are the bravest" - Julius Caesar, 58 B.C.

eug1
Inactive
posted 04-06-99 01:04 AM ET (US)     22 / 27       
This is off topic but where can you play HOMMII online at? Just loaded it back up and kind of addicted right now (have pack with the expansion built in) Just wondering in case I have a few hours to kill one day
belltower
Inactive
posted 04-09-99 12:32 PM ET (US)     23 / 27       
one neat thing about Call To Power: it will be available for Linux, if it isn't already.
Breydel
Clubman
posted 04-09-99 11:07 PM ET (US)     24 / 27       
I found the following tekst at http://www.game-over.net/review/april99/ctp/index.html. These guys rate Civ:CTP at 97% (!!!)

Following a legend is a near impossible task and failure is not uncommon, however there is no shortage on attempts. Civilization Call To Power is doing just that, following the legends that are Civilization and Civilization 2, facing a near impossible task to even match the depth and playability of the previous titles. Alpha Centauri (AC) has already presented gamers with a sequel, be it unofficial, to the Civilization series, but its new setting (space and the future) failed to draw me in the same way the original two games did. I was not very excited about playing AC and when it finally came out it simply failed to perform in my eyes, despite the many over-zealous reviews it received from many large magazines, namely PcGamer. Following this disappointment I was left with only one last hope, Call To Power, and fortunately it presented me with an entirely fresh look at human history and an impression echoing that of Civilization and Civilization 2. Instead of being a mere sequel, Call To Power insists on creating an entirely different type of gameplay while still staying faithful to human history and turn based strategy.

As many others may have already experienced, my first impressions of Call To Power were in fact, negative due to the apparent similarity with Civilization 2 in graphic style and gameplay. Wrought with feelings of despair as yet another failure crossed my path I persisted in an attempt to reverse this seemingly endless cycle. For all those times I just ignored my school's motto I never expected that it would actually be valid, but in this case labor omnia vincit (for those of you who don't speak Latin, "work conquers all") is actually true! As gameplay progressed from the first cities into the first empires Call To Power's wealth of uniqueness began to display itself for my longing eyes to see. The primary difference between Call To Power and Civilization 2 is that Call To Power has a much greater focus on non-combat options ranging from the slaver and the cleric to the eco-terrorist and the lawyer. Other notable major differences include the introduction of all new wonders (that's not just a few, but every single one) and the extension of gameplay time by 1000 years into the future meaning you now have 7000 years to create the greatest empire known to man (4000BC - 3000AD). I implore anyone who started up Call To Power and dismissed it as a mere copy of civ2 after just a couple hours of play, go back and play some more, you will be rewarded with one of the best turn based strategy games ever made.

To more clearly differentiate between Civ2 and Call To Power gameplay I will go through a mock turn adding in comments on each specific action and explaining the improvement or novelty in gameplay that they offer. All of our opponents have moved and now it is our turn to begin carefully planning and executing our diabolical strategies. Firstly, any important events are displayed via small icons that appear on the left-hand side of the screen. You can left click on the icon for more details or right click to make it disappear. This seemingly meaningless innovation is actually a huge time saver as it eliminates having to click on endless windows for every event that happens in your civilization (for those of you who have played civ2 you know how bloody annoying that is in late game).

According to the message the city of Ur has completed its construction of the printing press (a new city improvement that increases science in the city). Rather than having to access a separate window for the city status, the tabs at the bottom allow for very quick and efficient manipulation of practically everything crucial to gameplay. At first this seems annoying but you quickly find out that it makes managing a large empire infinitely more fun. It seems that there are no new improvements to build in Ur so we will take some of the workers off the land and make them busy as scientists, greatly increasing our civilization's science output. Unlike civ2, the occupations that you can give your farmers are very useful and are not only used once each resource tile has been taken up. Additionally science is paid for with gold, which is generated through trade, certain types of resource tiles and increased by wonders and city improvements. Food is essentially the same as in civ2 except that your entire civilization takes its excess food and saves it in case of famine later on. Production however is considerably different, as there are more strategic subtleties to allocating it. The most noticeable difference is that tile improvements such as roads and farms are no longer created by settlers but are considered public works which can be placed depending on how much production you have allocated to public works. This production is taken equally from each city, until you get certain advances that allow more specification. Now that we have allocated our farmers in Ur as scientists we will queue up two musketeers for defense that will likely be needed during our current war with the Spanish.

Before we can begin our combat for this round we will place our public works improvements, which have increased in variety and quantity dramatically. Instead of just farms, roads, railroads, mines, and super farms there are now 27 different tile improvements including nets (for increased food production in sea squares), advanced mines, maglevs, assembly bays and radar stations. You are allowed to place as many as you have the public works production for but they take varying amounts of time to complete depending on what is being built and where. For example, building a road through a mountain takes far longer than building a road over a plain. Another thing to keep in mind, and in my opinion and ingenious addition, is that certain tile improvements can't be placed on certain tiles until specific advances are discovered, such as not allowing the construction of railways through mountains until explosives are developed.

Now on to the most important aspect of our turn, war (human nature sucks doesn't it?). Our first move is to take our 9 stacked units including 4 cannons, 3 cavalry and 2 musketeers and move them adjacent to Toledo, our next target. Stacks are a completely new item in the Civilization series and are implemented in Call To Power better than in any other turn based strategy game I have played. Each unit has a ranged attack, an assault attack, a defense and a movement score. Ranged attack units often have much stronger attack when accompanied with strong assault attack units as they get to sit behind the front lines and shoot without being hit. Ranged units also get to shoot first so if you have enough of them they can even completely wipe out an opposing force without any casualties. After the ranged attack round comes the assault round which simulates the time when the ground troops actually meet in hand to hand combat. After the assault round finishes casualties are removed and the combat sequence repeats. So as we are positioned next to Toledo we decide to soften it up before the actual invasion (which will take place next turn). Cannons are one of the special units that have the special attack type of bombard, which allows them to fire into an adjacent square without risking combat. This option however is less accurate but is great to soften up a well-fortified city or a large stack of enemy troops before actually engaging them in combat. The bombardment is a success and two enemy troops are killed (excellent, as Mr. Burns would say). As is evident from this description the combat in Call To Power is vastly altered and improved over that of Civ2 to create a much more realistic representation of combat as well as much more strategic depth as to which troops work the best with each other. We click the end turn button and eagerly await our capture of the great Spanish city Toldeo.

Unfortunately I can only give an incomplete description of the gameplay as it is far too detailed to write in a review. I can say however, that the entire system has been remade to fit the designer's own unique style and create a gaming environment able to stand on its own with great accomplishment and absolutely no hubris.

Graphically, turn based strategy and Civilization are not known to present anything exciting, but Call To Power shoves aside that overused excuse and bestows the gamer with superb 16-bit graphics and numerous animations that bring the game screen alive unlike any other turn based strategy game, except Heroes of Might and Magic. The animations are so numerous that a p-200 will experience lag in mid game and a p2-233 at end game. Notably the colour palette used is extremely large and vibrant far exceeding the bland red and green of Alpha Centauri. There is also no over dominant colour as seen in many games such as the brown of Quake2, or the red of AC. Units move smoothly when passing through squares and are great fun to watch when going into their attacking stance. Trade routes, tile squares and cities are all fully animated with great skill and variety. Even the static elements are so well done that you will never find yourself in a state of tedium due to the lack of graphical stimulation. Not only does the main game screen have great graphics but also the great library (the help section) includes animation for every advance, military unit, city improvement and wonder available in the game. Each wonder also has a custom movie, which surpass Civ2's in both quality and originality.

The soundscapes of civilization are vast and diverse and using them to their greatest effect is exactly what Call To Power does. To compliment the excellent graphics, Call To Power offers a great selection of music ranging from African chants, to Celtic arrangements to Baroque concertos. Accompanying the music are the sound effects, which were also created with great consideration to ambience and pleasing the human ear. Each unit has a very distinctive sound effect for marching and another for attacking. The crack of the musket sounds great alongside the great boom of the cannon. Ships gliding through water actually sound like ships gliding through water and not some poorly sampled sound clip. Call To Power raises the expectations for sound in turn based strategy and should be commended for being bold enough to do so.

Playing Call To Power multiplayer is admittedly somewhat slow (waiting for your turn) but the improvements to the interface make each turn much faster, and you can put a time limit on the turn anyway. Lag is non-existent on a 28.8 and anything above it, although if you still have an old 14.4 modem you shouldn't even be on the internet let alone be playing this game multiplayer. There is a large variety of options in multiplayer including the ability to deactivate certain advances and wonders or to change victory conditions. IPX and TCP/IP are supported so almost everyone should have no problem finding someone else to play with. Overall an excellent effort in implementing the multiplayer, although no massive innovations were made.

Call To Power is everything the sequel to Civilization 2 should be while not being repetitive. The entirely new style of gameplay along with the amazingly fresh graphics and sound create, in my opinion, the best turn based strategy game to come along since Civ2 and definitely the best game this year.

------------------
Breydel

"Of all Gaul, the Belgae are the bravest" - Julius Caesar, 58 B.C.

armagedn
Clubman
posted 04-11-99 12:39 PM ET (US)     25 / 27       
eug1:

Well, I don't know which sites (apart from Kali) support HOMM II (the zone now supports HOMM III!). However, you can probably find people who'd be happy to play you at this url: www.astralwizard.com.

Loads of great user maps there, too! And links to other HOMM sites.

For those of you who don't yet know - yes, Heroes of Might & Magic is absolutely the best single-player pc strat game on the market. (Still, if you wanna play any of the HOMM series as multi-player, you better have a LOT of time on your hands!)

Cait
Inactive
posted 04-15-99 06:31 PM ET (US)     26 / 27       
I just bought Civ:CTP and ilike it and all but its kindof confusing. How do you get goods on tiles other than the city? I discovered all these diamonds goods and built 7+ citties all over:>! And the big strategy guide (sold separately) has everything in alphabetical order instead of cronological order! I thought triremes came after storm marines until my sleepstarved brain figured it out! Other than those probs its great! I also dovnloaded the scenario editor. Its nothing like the AoE editor. You gotta change terrain one square at a time!


Regarding to movies and games being delayed 6 monthes in Europe, I gotta wait 6-24 monthes to get new Lindsey Davis novels here in the States>

Breydel
Clubman
posted 04-16-99 04:00 PM ET (US)     27 / 27       
Hi,

A quick answer from me (you don't see that every day ): go through the tutorial and if you already did, do it again. Resource management can be kinda confusing in the first few games but once you've got it under control you can fully enjoy the well thought out aspects of the game. Enjoy!

------------------
Breydel

"Of all Gaul, the Belgae are the bravest" - Julius Caesar, 58 B.C.

You must be logged in to post messages.
Please login or register

Hop to:    

Age of Empires Heaven | HeavenGames