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If you are familiar with the other Sid Meiers PC versions of this sim game, there are a lot of similarities. You have sixteen civilization types to choose from including the Aztecs, French, Spanish, English, and China. Each has their own special attributes. Some offer a bonus to diplomacy, culture, military, economic or technology. Difficulty levels range from the very easy to impossible “deity” level.
When Civilization Revolution starts off, you are in the beginnings of an ancient civilization as an explorer. You will then establish your capital city. A map is randomly generated with four other civilizations. Resources and technology are limited, so creativity is needed. As more of the region is discovered, you will find resources, barbarians and other civilizations. Just like the PC Civilization games, it is a turn based system. All actions you need to take for your city and people are handled one at a time with a one button push on your Xbox 360 game controller.
Depending on your strategy, you will build up the areas that will work towards your goals. Cultural and technological progress attracts “great people” who can add bonuses to your city and give you extra advantages.
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Building your City
Each of your controlled cities has an interface that can be accessed with the Xbox 360 LB button. In it, you can instruct your people to build structures along with military personnel and their related weapons. The amount of money you have determines how quickly items can be built.
Building up your civilization also requires research. In Civilization Revolution, there is a screen that shows all available items and how they are tied in together. One item can be researched at a time, and your advisors will let you know when you are able to make another selection. Diplomacy is another way you can gain knowledge to improve your civilization. They may offer an exchange of knowledge or at a cost.
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Handling the Competition
How you handle competing civilizations depends on your sim game strategy. Choosing to eliminate all competition by force can be costly and will keep you on your toes. The rewards include a new city you can build and possibly some knowledge and technology you don’t have. If you are diplomatic, war can sometimes be avoided unnecessarily and you can trade knowledge. It is even possible to integrate them into your own culture without aggressive action. However, others will not always play nice and may make unreasonable requests that can result in military confrontation.
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Graphics and Sound
The graphics in the game (Xbox 360 version) are brightly colored with a basic clean look. It will not win awards for its visual appeal, but for this type of game it works. Unlike Civilization games on the PC, the navigation and motion is very fast and smooth. Even though the game is turn based, there is very little pause between actions. There is no intelligible voice conversation, as the game tries to mimic the accent and language of the specific civilizations when characters try to talk to you. All needed information is given by text.
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How to Win
There are four different ways to win in the Xbox 360 game version of Sid Meiers Civilization Revolution: By total domination, economic superiority, and by cultural or technological advantage. In total domination, you emphasize the use of military to defeat all other civilizations. Winning by economics requires the building of the World Bank and achieving a specific financial goal. A cultural win requires superiority in this area, building of “wonders” including the United Nations along with other items. For technology, you need build up items in this area and to be the first to reach Alpha Centari.